Archive for the ‘Compounds’ Category

Morning: spanakopita

February 23, 2017

Spanakopita was the morning name some weeks ago, and then this morning the bon appétit site offered instructions on how to “make spanakopita pie”, with a yummy photo:

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The full instructions, which are pretty complex, amount to:

make the spinach filling (using frozen spinach), prepare the phyllo pastry (using frozen phyllo), assemble, bake

The result, seen above, is spanakopita:

(in Greek cooking) a phyllo pastry stuffed with spinach and feta cheese. ORIGIN modern Greek, literally ‘spinach pie.’ (NOAD2)

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Understanding the comics

February 22, 2017

Once again, I return to the question of what you have to know to understand a comic strip or a cartoon, with two recent cartoons in my comics feed, a Rhymes With Orange and a Bizarro; in both, understanding requires that you supply a word that isn’t in the text of the cartoon:

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Objects in compounds

February 22, 2017

A recent One Big Happy:

Ruthie has heard her father use the N + N compound student loan but doesn’t know the conventional meaning of the compound (in which the first N functions as Indirect Object: ‘a loan (of money) to a student’), so she (erroneously) gets another possible reading for student loan (in which the first N functions as Direct Object: ‘a loan of a student (to someone)’.

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Stud Finder

February 18, 2017

(Discussion of men’s bodies and male-on-male sex in mostly very plain language, so not for kids or the sexually modest.)

Today’s playtime viewing began with a compilation video of scenes from porn flicks featuring Trenton Ducati, beginning with an especially nicely crafted scene from the 2012 TitanMen Stud Finder, involving Jed Athens, Ford Andrews, and Ducati. Well, yes, a bit of titular word play, combining carpentry / construction work and hot men.

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The DVD cover, with Ducati in the middle

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Meaty matters

January 19, 2017

(Mostly about language, but male bodies and bodyparts play significant roles.)

Yesterday, a posting about a fantasy agency supplying male hustlers, featuring two meat + N compounds: meat market ‘sexual marketplace’ and meatmen ‘men considered as sexual objects’ (as bodies as wholes, but especially as assemblages of sexual parts — cock, balls, and ass).  The interplay of two senses of meat here (the body, especially the male body, as a whole vs. the central masculine bodypart, the penis) led me to two joking uses of meat, in a Pat Byrnes New Yorker cartoon from 2001 (in which the ‘animal flesh as food’ sense of meat is central) and a piece of advice on the Usenet newsgroup soc.motss from Joseph Francis some years ago (in which the ‘body as sexual object’ sense is central).

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And venison is from Venus

December 19, 2016

Marsupials are from Mars, according to Ruthie in One Big Happy:

Faced with marsupial, which looks like it has Mars as its first element (and sounds pretty close to that), Ruthie chops out the Mars and comes up with a second element upial. So she’s treating the whole word as a N + N compound, which means that upial is the head N, and if the compound is as simple as possible, it’s subsective: a marsupial is then a kind of upial — a variety from Mars.

Ruthie has then given marsupial the demi-eggcorn treatment, analyzing Mars in it and flying with the possibility that upial is an English noun (with a meaning she doesn’t happen to know).

Language Sunday in the comics

December 12, 2016

Four in my comics feed Sunday morning: a One Big Happy with the derived adjective quotatious; a Zippy on pangrams; a Mother Goose and Grimm with an ambiguity in marine biologist; and a Doonesbury nominally about pronoun choices, but about much more.

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Calvin in chains

December 10, 2016

Today’s Calvin and Hobbes replay:

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Calvin gets a chain letter directed right at him.

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Blue-Emu

November 20, 2016

Being heavily advertised on cable television: Blue-Emu spray for pain relief (a relatively recent addition to the company’s line of ointments). You can watch baseball great Johnny Bench flogging both the spray and the original emu oil creme in the video here. The spray:

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Originally I thought this must be a joke: emu oil? blue emu oil? But no.

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A compound puzzle

August 21, 2016

Thursday on ADS-L, a report from Wilson Gray, with his baffled reaction (shared by others in the mailing list):

Headline of political ad: “Meet TPP Champion [Name]!”

Body of political ad: “Among a handful of shining examples of fighters for social, economic, and environmental justice stands [Name], who has opposed the TPP and TTIP since before most of us had even heard about them!” [TPP: Trans Pacific Partnership; TTIP: Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership]

Is this headline meant to convey the idea, somehow, that [Name] is a “TPP champion” not in the obvious sense that he champions the TPP against the left, but, instead, in the opposite sense, that he champions the left against the TPP?

How are we to interpret X champion? It’ll be helpful to get away from the particulars of this particular example by introducing an X that (I hope) will have no political associations for my readers: Fosdick. What might Fosdick champion refer to? In NPs like:

a Fosdick champion, the Fosdick champion, our Fosdick champion

an early Fosdick champion, the celebrated Fosdick champion, our greatest Fosdick champion

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