Phonetically correct sports

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Mar 15 16:40:15 UTC 2007

At 9:43 AM -0500 3/15/07, Jim Parish wrote:
>Michael Quinion wrote:
>>  A subscriber e-mailed me as follows: "I was recently with some friends at
>>  a trivia evening. One question was 'What is the only correct phonetically
>>  spelled sport?' It turned out to be 'Golf'". Your follow-up question:
>>  explain what's wrong phonetically with "rugby" and "cricket".
>Completely off-the-wall suggestion: could it be that "Golf" is one of the
>words in the other International Phonetic Alphabet - the one that begins
>(I think) "Able, Baker, Charlie"?
>Jim Parish
Good catch, Jim.  There are a couple of different alphabets, and
according to one post on the web, the relevant one isn't "Able,
Baker" (which has George for the G) but

Alpha, bravo, Charlie, delta, echo, foxtrot, golf, hotel, India,
Juliet, kilo, Lima, Mike, November, Oscar, papa, Quebec, Romeo,
Sierra, tango, uniform, Victor, X-ray, Yankee, Zulu.

for the "international phonetic (Roman) alphabet"

Sure enough, "golf" is the only game (I know of) on this list.


The American Dialect Society -

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