Hu on base

Pointer from Dan Everett on Facebook to this image:


An allusion to perhaps the most famous American comedy routine, Abbott and Costello’s “Who’s on First”. From Wikipedia’s extensive article:

“Who’s on First?” is a comedy routine made famous by Abbott and Costello. The premise of the sketch is that Abbott is identifying the players on a baseball team for Costello, but their names and nicknames can be interpreted as non-responsive answers to Costello’s questions. For example, the first baseman is named “Who”; thus, the utterance “Who’s on first” is ambiguous between the question (“Which person is the first baseman?”) and the answer (“The name of the first baseman is ‘Who'”).

A video: Who’s on first (#2)

Many allusions to the classic, including on this blog, here.

One Response to “Hu on base”

  1. Speech act ambiguity | Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] Readers will recognize this ambiguity as a cousin of a famous speech act ambiguity, in the Abbott and Costello comedy routine “Who’s on first”. A video of the routine, along with a brief analysis, here: […]

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