Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Aug 20 18:08:59 UTC 2008

At 1:43 PM -0400 8/20/08, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>At 8/20/2008 06:21 PM, Lynne Murphy wrote:
>>Larry--no, 'anus' isn't really said any differently--but if you say
>>something differently from/to/than how others say it, they'll find a reason
>>to mock it.
>And if they seek, they shall find.  At a summer camp in New York when
>I was 10, a clique led by a slightly older Bostonian decided to call
>me "Birdshit".  When there were no counselors around, of course.  (It
>was not pleasant, but I was able to dismiss it as uninspired.)
And certain last names (e.g. "Horn", to take a random example) don't
require nearly as much creativity.

(As for (non-rhotic) "Viner", there's also "Regina", which has pretty
much been excluded from the U.S. inventory of given names by taboo
avoidance, and when I've heard it spoken (hard to avoid when you're
referring to the capital of Saskatchewan) it's often rendered with
the Italian /i/ (as in Gina) rather than the English /ay/.   This
isn't true for the heart condition of _angina_, which does however
figure in various puns and jokes (especially when figuring in the
collocation _acute angina_).


The American Dialect Society -

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