Conscious of the need to improve the positive social impact of our organization, we’ve decided it was time to branch out further into studies that could improve the lot of the average linguistic researcher. We thus had our interns submit 10,000 funding proposals each to different funders around the world. We could have carefully analysed the content of successful and unsuccessful proposals and highlighted specific words, sentences and phrases linked with rejection. Instead, we gave the interns the weekend off and here present part 1 of 2 of a hodgepodge of disastrous, fruitless and ill-
In addition to the woeful snippets, the first of a trio of fuller examples is included at the end of the collection, should your will to live hold out that far.
No prior study has ever included data from drunk lemurs.
The objective of this research is to make sure I don’t need to have contact with the outside world for two years.
I will be investigating the hitherto unexplored field of patient-
To the best of the author’s knowledge, no research has yet been done on the linguistics of the English language.
We will investigate the use of psychedelic substances to enhance the ability of cetaceans to learn English.
Despite being one of the first controlled studies of language acquisition, and its foundational importance to the theory of Universal Grammar, nobody has hitherto attempted to replicate the work of Psammeticus. Our study will rectify this oversight.
We’d write something about language acquisition but actually, we just like to play with babies. We find them to be more fun than the staff in our department.
We would like to reassure the Foundation that we have completely forgiven you for your responses to all of our previous funding requests. No hard feelings. Really.
Background: I will be studying the communicative abilities of domestic felines, canines, and avians because, let’s be honest, humans suck.
Aim: to cultivate a bonsai tree that follows strictly binary branching.
I have found a wonderful proof of Universal Grammar but this form isn’t long enough to contain it.
Utterances will be recorded on an Edison cylinder.
Data will be gathered by means of an Ouija board.
There is little to no data on the relationship(s) between satirisationalisation of linguistics and desire for world domination. Five contributors to the three largest satirical linguistics online magazines (Satirical Linguistics Quarterly, The Linguistics Satirist, and the little-
Through six failed pilot studies, we have exhaustively ruled out inadequate methodologies; the methodology proposed here is therefore proved to be adequate for the purposes of our research question.
Subjects may be offered the option of a pain-
To facilitate efficient data collection in case of participant noncompliance, enhanced interrogation techniques may be employed.
Prior to designing the data collection tool, I will read the relevant literature (if there is any) and consult any specialists who are willing to talk to me after the last conference I attended.
Subjects will be trained to answer the questionnaire in a way consistent with my hypothesis.
This project will cause several generations of grad students to go extinct.
Informants will be granted immunity from prosecution.
Your prompt acceptance of this proposal is needed in order to avoid the denial of my tenure application next month.
The materials budget for this informal linguistics education proposal is large because we expect to go through many permanent markers as we go from store to store crossing out all the apostrophes that shouldn’t be there and adding the ones that are missing.
We are budgeting for some lovely welcoming gifts to hand out when we first meet the Sentinelese.
The budget for makeup, hair, designer clothing and sunglasses for this study of Instagram influencers is outlined in Appendix B.
Our home institution’s support for this research is underscored by the fact that our Office of Research has offered a discount of 10% off the normal overhead charge of 350%.
My home institution has agreed to adopt the cost-
The attached equipment list ensures adequate tools to incapacitate the local bureaucrats who narcissistically cut short my previous field trip before I could collect any data.
The £10,000 hospitality budget is necessary to ensure the approval of the Ethical Oversight Committee.
Research will be published in the East Dogsnot Journal of Esoteric Languagey Stuff.
Excluded reviewer: Please do not let ___ review this proposal, as he wouldn’t know real talent if it bit him in the ass. There was also an incident involving my dog Talent...
I wish to acknowledge the role of my supervisor, Professor X. Selent, Chair of Writing Successful Funding Proposals at the University of Great Sooksess, as well as my father, Dr Neap O’Tism, author of Getting Your Kid That Dream Research Project (favorably reviewed by many noteworthy literary commentators), both of whom
wrote the whole thing for me offered substantial support gave me a hand from time to time offered occasional ad hoc assistance with formatting.
Application: To date, little to no work has been undertaken on the naturalness of Hobbit-
Gandalf spoken interactions in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings. We build on previous work on Luke Skywalker — Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader) spoken interactions in The Empire Strikes Back, which are generally taken to be indistinguishable from ‘real world’ spoken interaction (e.g. Smith & Wesson 2017 on London pub conversations; Weeves and Jooster 1932 on hostage negotiation scenarios). Focusing on particular aspects of interaction (pauses; use of fillers of ‘sarcastic surprise’ (Jeez, no WAY bro, [juh] whaaaaa:t?); overlaps of 1.5 seconds or greater; and other- initiated continuations of (philosophical) question ~ (irrelevant) response adjacency pairs), the study intends to empirically demonstrate the authenticity (Hide- Ranger, 1998) and naturalness (O’Kay, 2000) of Hobbit- Gandalf spoken interactions, thereby making the argument that Jackson’s trilogy was both ‘really, really good’ and ‘ace’ (Al- Rond, 3012), not only cinematographically and in scope and design and execution but also in terms of the linguistic beautness of its scriptwriting.
Impact: We get to travel to New Zealand.
Investigator profiles: Dr Sam Wise and Professor Jan Delf. Between us we’ve watched LoTR and The Hobbit trilogy more times than Gandalf pulls a deus ex machina. We have limited experience in spoken interaction of any kind other than about sci-fi and fantasy films, but feel that in talking to each other about this funding application, we have gained sufficient experience to understand experientially and intuitively what ‘conversation’ is.
* We also could have presented a smorgasbord of effective, productive and successful models from our corpus, but we’ve got to hold on to some sort of edge over the competition.
|The SpecGram Linguistic Enhancement of English Project (SLEEP)|
|SpecGram Vol CLXXXVIII, No 1 Contents|