Cheese or font?

From Will Leben, via the Stanford linguistics department newsletter (on November 6), a pointer to the entertaining site Cheese or Font?, where you are given proper nouns and asked to decide whether they refer to cheeses or to fonts. Something of a challenge.

Lots of people have noticed that names of diseases and names of plants are often very similar, but I don’t know if anyone has put together a Plant or Disease? test.

For visual material, there are several X or Y? tests and games out there. For several years, various versions of Gay or Eurotrash? have been available on the net, often billed as a test of gaydar. The player is offered a set of photos (usually of young men) and asked to decide whether the person in the picture is gay or Eurotrash.

(In case you’re not familiar with Eurotrash, or eurotrash, according to the March 2009 draft revision of the OED‘s Euro- entry, the term is originally and chiefly U.S., is “depreciative”, and refers to “rich European socialites collectively, esp. those living or working in the U.S.” The deprecatory tone comes from a suggestion that these socialites are living an idle and dissipated life. The OED has cites from 1980 on.)

Then there’s the series of X Face or O-Face? tests in Details magazine a few years ago, reported on in a Language Log posting here. The player is given a display of faces, some of them of people in a moment of exertion or great emotion (for instance, athletes, American Idol contestants, guitarists), some of them of people at the moment of sexual climax. The player’s task is to decide which photos show X Face (Game Face, Idol Face, Guitar Face) and which O-Face.

(Why, you might be wondering, did the topic come up on Language Log? Because of the term O-face, which seems to be a relatively recently coined, or at least recently popular, alternative to the older term come face. Details on Language Log.)

3 Responses to “Cheese or font?”

  1. m Says:

    There used to be a game where you had to match the photos of household items and furniture with the Ikea name. Impossible!

  2. Bob Says:

    Recently I learned about a similar site: http://www.steakhouseorgaybar.com

  3. mollymooly Says:

    The UK TV series Eurotrash featured trashy, camp, and vulgar titbits from European low culture; in which sense, “Gay and Eurotrash” is a far from empty intersection.

    MTVs “Remote Control” gameshow had a “Dead or Canadian” round featuring B or C list celebrities.

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