September 5th, 2004


Fruity day

I spent yesterday fruiting. Okay, I wasn't fruiting, but I was taking advantage of a number of deciduous plants in the area that were fruiting. [Why can't I say fruiting here -- berrying is okay...].

At 10 am, the local Vietnamese church started up with their seasonal outdoor festivals, which seem to involve thousands of watts of amplification and poorly-trained singing -- I can't chalk all of the mismatches up to a tone-language and a harmonic scale I'm not familiar with. It's just not possible that it's that bad.

Luckily, A. had planned a blueberry-picking expedition and invited a lot of people. This expedition overlapped directly with a large regional music festival, so only a few people came along with us.

K. and A. and I picked 12 pounds of blueberries in about half an hour -- mostly K. and I, because A.'s arms and hands are acting up again, and we got to see a few friends (including some tech activist folks).

We came back to the house, after dropping off a present for a friend of A.'s, and made blueberry crisp and played board games with A's boss (V) and a friend of hers (M); A. took off halfway through because she was late for a dinner date with S., which was awkward for the boardgames, but once K. and I had successfully ushered V & M out, the house was ours again. K. and I picked plums from the tree in our backyard, using an ingenious device designed and built last year by _dkg_ and lapartera, which involves about ten feet of light, strong PVC piping, the bottom half of a 3-liter clear plastic soda bottle, and a goodwill fork. We picked nearly 100 plums, and wound up making five jars of syrup and fruit mash -- it was originally intended to be jam, but the fruit was too ripe and sweet. I'm not really complaining -- plum syrup over pancakes sounds pretty good to me.

The VCC kept up their gala -- louder and louder, it seemed -- for hours. At 7, the sun started to set, and they cranked it up louder. At 9, I called the local police number:
"Police and fire."
"I'd like to make a noise complaint."
"oh, between [street] and [street], roughly between [avenue] and [avenue]. I think it's the Vietnamese Catholic church; they've been doing highly-amplified karaoke for something like eleven hours."
The dispatcher laughed once, and answered immediately., "right, well, they have a permit until 10:00 tonight."

I guess I wasn't the only one calling to make a complaint. At least they only do this once or twice a year. I spent the next hour counting down the minutes.

[UPDATE: at 10:15 this morning they started again. I have got to get out of the house...]

[eggcorn sighting]: "out of bounce"

I've found another eggcorn.

In the documentation from how to create panoramic views from multiple digital photographs on Linux:

Click on a significant point in the picture on the left, then look for the same point in the image on the right. If your second click is out of bounce Hugin will tell you so and you can reclick.
(emphasis mine). Surprisingly, this phrase gets very few gHits (647 gHits), but it seems to be used as a pun on the first few links. (The standard "out of bounds" receives 318 KgHits, which suggests that "out of bounce" is not about to catch on as a reanalysis.) However, the fourth link Google suggests is from a Java user group, using "array out of bounce" (heh!) and the sixth is flag football rules, where "the last minute of each half being stop time if the player goes out of bounce", and the eleventh is this editing horror: "A basketball player purports to of been dissapointed when, at a critical time, a misteak made the ball go out of bounce", which turns out to be a writing professor stunting a la Richard Lederer, so it has been observed in the wild before.

This eggcorn sees to follow the standard pattern: a phrase that is non-compositional or completely-lexicalized to at least some speakers (I suspect this Linux programmer didn't see the word "bounds" as a word like "boundary"), who reanalyze it to some other homophone or near-homophone.

Eggcorns are marvelous stuff, and they turn up everywhere.

  • Current Mood

more books I want

I'm totally intrigued by the Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books described in Language Log.

Yes, I'm the kind of dork who finds this sort of dialogue entertaining:
"Take the first had had and that that in the book by way of example," explained Lady Cavendish. "You would have thought that that first had had had had good accasion to be seen as had, had you not? Had had had approval but had had had not; equally it is true to say that that that had had approval but that that other that that had not."

"So the problem with that other that that was that ... ?"

"That that other-other that that had had approval."

"Okay," said the Bellman, whose head was in danger of falling apart like a chocolate orange, "let me get this straight: David Copperfield, unlike Pilgrim's Progress, had had had, had had had had. Had had had had TGC's approval?"

I don't know how I haven't come across these before. Has anybody else read them?