Curses, Foiled Again!—A Letter from the Editor-in-Chief SpecGram Vol CLXXXV, No 2 Contents University News

Letters to the Editor

Dear Editors,

Your July puzzle inspired me to put together a matrix-themed variant for the classroom. You can find it online, but you’ll be appalled at some of the results that pop up when you search for “Dominatrices”.

Anyway, gotta run. Mistress Vela takes it out very hard on you if you’re late!

Prof. Solomon Lappert
Sussex Linear Algebra Program

P.S. Does this count as a submission?

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Dear Slappy,

Coincidentally, the symbols in the Dominasals grid are a transcription of our last session with Mistress Vela. They’re only approximate due to restraints constraints on our articulators at the time.


P.S. We’d call it more of a gag letter.

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Dear Chaps,

In a recent editorial your mouth(off)piece wrote, “And just as the date of Arbor Day varies from state to state of the Union and province to province of that kind of empty space further north...” I’m sorry to inconvenience you at such an unfortunate time as you must be having, what with being reduced to peddling such tripe and all, but in the interests of truth and fair play and all that, I would like to remind you chaps that Canada doesn’t have Arbor Day (Nova Scotia excepted, as they always are, and Newfoundland, because of course they do, and I seem to remember something about Edmonton, but they always go their own way). We have National Forest Week, during which we celebrate Maple Leaf Day. In any case, we are happy to accommodate any Chomskyans who wish to find religious significance of any sort in these celebrations.

Gordon Gagnon
Magog Agricultural, Politeness, & Linguistic Extension

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Dear Mr. Lightfoot,

Well, what else can you expect from a country with so many more trees than people?


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Speculative Grammarian accepts well-written letters commenting on specific articles that appear in this journal or discussing the field of linguistics in general. We also accept poorly-written letters that ramble pointlessly. We reserve the right to ridicule the poorly-written ones and publish the well-written ones... or vice versa, at our discretion.

Oi, Ya Big Numpties!

Did you know that wug is the only noun in English to keep all its case markings? Thus:

A wug (nom. sing.) crossed the road. Two wugs (nom. pl.) watched patiently. The car swerved to miss the wuge (acc. sing.). It nearly hit the wuga (acc. pl.) who were watching. The driver heard angry noises coming from the wugat (gen. sing.). The police took a witness statement from the wugam (gen. pl.).* Next to the wugo (loc. sing), the police found important evidence. They then proceeded to find papers on the wugea (loc. pl.). Now aware of the fact that all three wugs (nom. pl.) were filming the entire incident as a viral YouTube stunt, he spoke to the wugovat (dat. sing.) and to the two wugami (dat. pl.). Oh wæg (voc. sing.), oh waga (voc. pl.), don’t you have anything better to do?

Jock Tamson
Professor of Wuggitry
Auchterturra University

* Incidentally, this explains the etymology of the name of the police chief in The Simpsons, who is “Chief of the Wugam”.

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Dear Belter Barry,

You’ve blown our collective minds! Your etymology is pure magic. We’re totally wugging out over here!


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Hwæt, Ċeorlas!

In your latest editorial missive, the phrase “sclerotic deadwood” appears. That reminded me that I had been reading some of your archives, which reminded me that I have just one question: Why? Granted, nothing straight ever was built from the crooked timber of humanity, but one would think in the centuries of supposed extantness of your journal that the timber would have straightened out somewhat. Sadly, in fact you convey nothing so much as the image of a wicker chair made from a single wormwood branch that grew that way, with perhaps a hybrid of poison ivy and kudzu growing on it.

Doremi Fasola Tido
Professor of Saxo-Ænglisc
The Musicolinguistical Institute of Italy

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De-Dear-Dear-Dear De-Doo-Doo-Doo,

You don’t read very thoroughly. Inside the wicker chair can be clearly seen horned frogs and a couple of armadillos with leprosy.


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Curses, Foiled Again!A Letter from the Editor-in-Chief
University News
SpecGram Vol CLXXXV, No 2 Contents