just for fun

Mark_Mandel at DRAGONSYS.COM Mark_Mandel at DRAGONSYS.COM
Mon Aug 16 21:22:53 UTC 1999

This was forwarded to me under the Subject line "Unfit for Publication" by a
chain of friends. I pass it on here by permission of the author (vide infra).

-- Mark


Dear WESSies:

The following "news item" was rejected for the Personal & Institutional
News column of the upcoming Fall WESS Newsletter for the very simple
reason that it is fictional.  But you need to see it anyway:


Our colleague Hypo Kondria, Third Assistant Vice Chair Pro Tem in one
of the minor departments at the library of the Institute for Really Ancient
Greek Political and Polygraph Studies at the Winnemucca Campus of the
University of  North Central Nevada (WC of the UNCN), has just had his
book-length manuscript, "The Birth of Democracy from the Spirit of
Olive Oil," rejected for the 153rd time.  In what his sister Meta
deems a "brilliant politico-linguistic study," he theorizes that the word
"oligarchy" was first devised as "olivarchy" and referred to the few
really big olive grove owners who monopolized early politics on the
Peloponnesian plateau.  Then, due to the "Fourth Phoneme Phenomenon,"
the voiced labio-dental fricative /v/ of "olivarchy" transmogrified
to the voiced velar plosive /g/ in a stunning confirmation of "Gerner's

Likewise, says Hypo, the word "democrat" came from the many poor
olive sellers who would "demo" their wares which they carried in "crates."
These early "demo-crates" became "democrats."  Those who reaped olives
and took the profits, he explains, were known as "reap-olivans,"
which morphed to "republicans."  His latest manuscript rejection was at a
Greek linguistics trade show in Salt Lake City where a tornado thoroughly
shredded it before carrying it away.  Having had his manuscript rejected
by numerous vanity publishers in Reno, Las Vegas and Elko, Hypo is now
going to submit his stunning etymologies to some prestigious university
presses in the Northeast.

Richard Hacken
European Studies Bibliographer
Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 84602, USA
e-mail:  Richard_Hacken at byu.edu
phone: (801) 378-2374
webpages: http://www.lib.byu.edu/~rdh/

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