The Atishu Tribe—Dr. Gus Huntaight SpecGram Vol CLXVI, No 1 Contents Obituary: Simon M. Tating

From the Ministry of Silly Sounds

A Public Service Announcement

The Ministry of Silly Sounds wishes to inform the public that the following sounds have been collaboratively developed in EU laboratories or successfully replicated from aberrant non-major languages. All of them will soon be released to the public and thus become available for borrowing or wholesale phonological restructuring projects. As some sounds may have detrimental effects on either speakers or speaking targets, a modicum of caution is suggested. Select sounds are tentatively scheduled for official promulgation and may be required in future dialects of English.

Ambi-Articulated Syllables: Segments characterized by distribution across multiple speakers; most often produced by monks, barbershop quartets, and boy bands (but see Yaramery, Smeep, and Voletampler 2010 for arguments that these are not, in fact, distinct groups).

Apico-Narinasal Consonants: This class of consonants is realized with the tongue tip touching the tip of the nose or inserted into one of the nostrils; these consonants belong to the larger class of linguo-protensional sounds and morphemes consisting of this sound usually carry some irrisive meaning.

Bronchiolar Egressive Affricates: While this class of consonants is usually produced during respiratory disease, it has become fashionable among certain segments of the younger population to implant devices (rather like miniature bottle mouths with a spring-held lid) to produce these sounds at will. Mechanisms to ensure the reliability of conscious control of the sound have progressed to the point that we at the Ministry consider it a useful expansion of the human speech system, and their use will be mandated in stages over the following decade to ensure the homogeneity of the speech community.

Chesty Lark Registers (a.k.a. Birdsong Prosodic Universal): Once hailed as the most consummate, first rate, articulate and innate twittering versatility ever encountered in human beings, they were recently found exclusively among intonational junkies who had had hypodermic syrinxes permanently implanted in their thoracic cavity.

Flubber-Gubber Vowels: These vowels comprise at least four F0 traces, and can only be produced simultaneous to imbibing hot liquids rapidly in large mouthfuls.

Hyper-Aspirated Ejective Alveolar Clicks: These HEACs appear to result from an alveolar click, followed by a glottal stop, followed by a (usually triplicated) burst of aspiration, usually the result of receiving news that a particularly time-consuming or tedious set of homework problems has just been assigned... the ‘co-articulated’ eye-roll appears mandatory in some dialects.

Loogie Fricatives: Several words containing semi-nativized nasal egestive sounds, borrowed from one or more Xoŋry dialects, have been reported in half a dozen major world languages. Side effects include a decrease in social approval and an increase in sinus infections.

LOOOOW-ExtraHigh Pitch Contours: When subjected to instrumental analysis, it is advised to use the highest rate available on your recording device in order to catch the entire sequence of pitch movement. Older researchers may have difficulties hearing the target frequency in the region of 40,000 Hz and above. Reduplicated, retriplicated, or requadruplicated forms of this intonational pattern are not unheard of. It also repels mosquitoes.

Proleptic Nuclei: Also known as “vowel crunching”; results from the same principles that produce vowel harmony, but is realized as an attempt to say both vowels simultaneously rather than simply imposing some features of one on the other. Produces a hypermoraic stressed syllable with randomized diphthong. Not to be confused with the “Proleptic Augment” used by speakers of Doric Greek to indicate that they already knew what the aspect of the other speaker’s verb form was going to be, e.g. when Nestor would just not shut up already (surviving in Modern English as the rapid-fire /æʔ:æʔ:æʔ:æʔ:æʔ:/ used to head off someone’s unwanted comment).

PureNasals™: In this communication mode, the resonances inside the nasal cavities are excited through airflow through the nose. The vocal folds stay in their normal breathing position. These sounds are modulated through velocity and pressure level variation in airflow. Utterances of this type are structured by rhythmic variation of sound duration and pauses. Since PureNasals™ may have a secondary nariputent component they might have a repellent effect on the olfactorily sensitive.

Unvoiced Axial Fricative: Usually only encountered in male language, this production may be an attempt to duplicate the often-encountered, but rarely cataloged, voiced anal plosive, or its more “deadly” version, the voiceless anal fricative.

Voiceless Bilabial Stops: For obvious reasons, the voiceless bilabial stop [p]the most prurient of all stopsis to be avoided, though its regular usage is widespread and quite troubling.

Voiceless Bilabio-Alveolar Trill: the double-articulated trill has been observed in otherwise dignified persons forced by circumstance to play with sparkly pretty pony toys in the company of particularly cute small female children.

The Atishu TribeDr. Gus Huntaight
Obituary: Simon M. Tating
SpecGram Vol CLXVI, No 1 Contents