We were disappointed to read N. Elix’s recent balderdash of an article, “Generative Grammar Proves the Existence of Aliens”, which attempts to conflate Generative Grammar and Scientology. One of them is a vicious cult founded by a charlatan, the other is... hmm, we’re beginning to see Elix’s point.
We’ve become aware of other eerie correspondences: X-bars and X-enu, for example. Could it be a coincidence??? Anything is possible, but we think it unlikely. The influence of the “c-c org” is apparently not limited to Generative Grammar.
We are equally suspicious of computational linguistics, as it uses n-grams, which are awfully close to engrams. We have heard that one of their lesser-
Also: Dianetics, diachronics; suppressive person, superessive case; E-meter, para-
With a newfound sense
of sincere paranoia,
Connie Spirantze & Deepak Stative
Tittles N’ Foibles Illustrated, Hattaras
Dear Deep State Conspirators,
Thanks for throwing us into the deep end of your conspiracy theories!
For readers not familiar with the alleged* “c-c org”, it’s an allegedly common abbreviation for the alleged “c-command organization”, which is allegedly a “linguistically nonexistent” Generative Grammar para
As for the computational linguists and their “Hello, world” ambitions, last we heard their efforts to come up with a consistent definition of what constitutes a language as opposed to a dialect was still stuck in committee. Not being real members of the Humanities, they’ll never escape that quagmire. As a side note, a similar project, known as “The Nine Billion Names of God” (see Clarke, 1953), is on a shorter deadline.
* Allegedly, none of this is true, so don’t sue us for allegedly repeating what we allegedly heard.
Recent correspondence in this venue has repeatedly suggested that Dr. Pepper is a desirable beverage to imbibe when in Lubbock, Texas. This may be true, but why choose the mere good when the excellent is available? I refer, of course, to that regal beverage, RC Cola, preferred by Southern hostesses by a wide margin over DP. A mere doctorate simply does not compare with a Royal Crown.
Claude A. Hatcher
P.S. I have never been to Lubbock myself, on the advice of my physicians, but this fact is irrelevant to the point under discussion.
That is probably wise. They do say that Lubbock puts the “yawn” in the Llano Estacado.
I am outraged.
In the October 2018 issue, your alleged “editor” produced the following abomination: “Think about how you wasted last evening, reading some vapid (or possibly brilliant) piece on linguistic theory...”
It is difficult to know where to begin to attack this monstrosity, which expresses caustic disdain for all that we Linguists hold dear. Linguistic writing is never vapid, and hardly ever brilliant; and in any case, no reading of said writing could in any sense be “wasted.”
Your publication continues to plumb heretofore unimagined depths of anti-
Sincerely glad no
longer to be yours,
Loquatius Lecturatus, D. Phil.
Institute of Linguistics, University of Upperlipstiff, Netherenglands
Dearest Professor Kumquat,
Your wish would be our command if we were in the habit of imperatives. Favoring softer moods, as we do, we may venture only to say “may it be so.”
Speculative Grammarian accepts well-
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