not quite eggcorns

Arnold Zwicky zwicky at STANFORD.EDU
Mon Dec 22 16:09:57 UTC 2008

On Dec 19, 2008, at 8:10 PM, Victor wrote:

> ... 2.    [Leafing through the animal picture book] -- Sharks eat
> fish, like
> mackerel. -- Yeah! it's the *macaroni fish*. -- Macaroni fish? -- Yes,
> if you slice it and fry it, you get macaroni and cheese.


a fair number of "macaroni fish" hits, but only a very few that seem
to refer to some kind of fish.  most are for dishes (like "macaroni
fish pie") that have both macaroni and fish as ingredients.  a few for
a post-WW2 British "austerity dish", the nature of which i can't quite
determine, though i'd guess it was macaroni somehow treated as mock
fish.  plus a few for "macaroni fish" as a crafts project -- pieces of
dry pasta glued together to make a fish.

but then there are a few sites (from evident non-native speakers) with
things like the following:

KITP - Egypt [EG]
Want to buy Fish, Butter
Dear Sir
We are a company deals in field of food stuff and we would like to
import the following items:
1- Haring fish.
Origin: Netherlands - Norway
Specifications: 3-5 fishes / 1 kgm.
2- Mackerel fish.
3- Macaroni fish.
4- Natural butter.
Origin: Australia - New Zealand - Netherlands
Specifications: Not salted
Please send your price and specifications.
Best regards,
Adel El Mohandes


clearly "macaroni fish" here is not mackerel, since "mackerel fish" is
also on this (short) list.  so it's puzzling.


The American Dialect Society -

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