SpecGram Vol CLXXIII, No 3 Contents Letters to the Editor

The Fishing Linguist

A Letter from Executive Editor Keith Slater

There are, quite probably, some linguists who do not enjoy fishing. I’ve never met anyone who actually admitted this, in so many words, but now and again when I’m chatting someone up at a conference I sense just the slightest hesitation, an extra few milliseconds of pause, before an unnaturally enthusiastic “yes, the weedless hula popper is my favorite bass lure, too.” The semantics is all felicitous, but metalinguistically, I can tell we’re not really on the same page.

Eberhard Klein, Françoise Pouradier Duteil, & Karl Heinz Wagner (eds.), 1991, Betriebs­linguistik und Linguistik­betrieb. Tübingen: Niemeyer.

Chiasmus of the Month
July 2015

It’s odd, if you think about it. Fishing is just about the most appropriate pastime I can imagine for a linguist. Why wouldn’t we all love it?

In case you don’t agree with me yet, here are just a few of the features of fishing that have obvious parallels in academic linguistics:

As a reader of Speculative Grammarian, you can see the parallels instantly. If you can’t, though, it means you need to dust off your fishing gear and get out to the lake right away. Really, if you don’t understand fishing, you can’t expect to understand linguistics, and that means you can’t really expect to understand yourself.

Letters to the Editor
SpecGram Vol CLXXIII, No 3 Contents