Archive for the ‘Phonetics’ Category

Wading with Vladimir and Estragon

February 19, 2019

That, at least, is where it started, with this bit of playfulness on Facebook:


One among a great many available versions of Wading for Godot (like this one, hardly any have an identifiable origin, but just get passed around on the web, along with jokes, funny pictures, and the like: the folk culture of the net). I’m particularly taken with #1, as a well-made image and as a close reworking of lines from Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot:


Imperfect rhyme, part 3

October 6, 2018

Previously on this blog:

on 9/30, “AZ on imperfect rhyme” (part 1 of a series): an inventory of publications of mine on half-rhyme and phonological similarity

on 10/1, “Imperfect rhyme, part 2”: an inventory of postings on this blog that discuss particular examples of half-rhyme

And now, part 3, the last: an inventory of publications that cite the papers of mine on imperfect rhyme in part 1 — mostly the first, the 1976 rock rhyme paper.


Imperfect rhyme, part 2

October 1, 2018

First installment: my 9/30 posting “AZ on imperfect rhyme”, an inventory of publications of mine on half-rhyme and phonological similarity. Today, the second installment, an inventory of postings on this blog that discuss particular examples of half-rhyme. To come: an inventory of publications that cite the 5 papers of mine on imperfect rhyme, especially the first, the 1976 rock rhyme paper.


AZ on imperfect rhyme

September 30, 2018

I’ve been assembling a bibliography of my papers on rock rhyme, half rhyme / half-rhyme, imperfect rhyme etc. and of other work springing from these. This is the first part, on 5 papers of mine.


Adam atom

July 8, 2018

Today’s Bizarro plays on Adam vs. atom and on the ambiguity of bomb:

(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 11 in this strip — see this Page.)

The sentence Adam bombs, with intransitive bomb ‘fail miserably’ — hey, it’s a really tough audience — in the pres. 3sg. vs. the (plural) compound N atom bombs.


Mister Muntz

June 11, 2018

The One Big Happy from May 15th:

Months, Muntz, let’s call the whole thing off.


Merer, merer

May 29, 2018

The One Big Happy from the 2nd, with Ruthie dealing, once again, with a word she’s at best vaguely acquainted with:

The word Ruthie and Joe’s father is aiming at — readers of the strip know this, because the word is spelled for us in his speech balloon, but Ruthie and Joe don’t — is the Adj mere, a relatively infrequent item, certainly much less frequent in the kids’ experience than the N mirror. Then we stumble into a gigantic rat’s nest of massive variation on a large assortment of phonetic details.


Annals of casual speech

March 9, 2018

The One Big Happy from February 9th:

in other words > nudder words. Part of this is just ordinary stuff in connected casual speech. Then there’s the [d] for standard [ð] in other.


Morning tetrameter naming

December 27, 2017

The morning began with:

Xenophon Bellerophon

Two Ancient Greek names — the philosopher, historian, and soldier Xenophon and the mythical hero Bellerophon — together making a line of trochaic tetrameter (when the secondary accents on phon are treated as accented in the poetic line).

As a linguist, I had hoped that the phon in these names would be the Greek ‘sound’ stem, so that Xenophon would be equivalent to an English noun xenophone, referring either to someone who speaks a foreign language (parallel to Anglophone and  Francophone) or to a non-native sound, from a foreign language (like the voiceless velar fricative [x] in relatively German-faithful pronunciations of the noun Bach in English).

But apparently not (though the etymologies of the names seem to be uncertain). My hopes are dashed.


twicker tweet

October 31, 2017

Today’s (Halloween) Zits, with a big “Aww” response from Jeremy:

Unlike trickle treat (reported on here in a 11/27/14 posting), which has a syllabic r (in casual-speech trick or) misheard as a syllabic l (so that trick or is misidentified as trickle), twicker tweet is entirely a matter of production (rather than perception), with [w] for English approximant r [ɹ̠] in child phonology.