Overheard in the Linguistics Student Lounge—Chesterton Wilburfors Gilchrist, IV SpecGram Vol CXCIII, No 2 Contents Of the Abnegation of the Institute of Imladris—Found among the papers of J. R. R. Tolkien by Deak Kirkham

Press Conference of the Association of Overly Honest Linguists

Mo Data (Press Operations Officer Presiding): Welcome to this press conference. Before we begin, I’d like to introduce our team. On my left, we have Luce M’Thods, Assistant Associate Adjunct Professorial Research Fellow at the University of Flashy Projects. Please do leave a few coins in the hat in front of him as you leave as his university’s decision to build a new hotel and spa resort instead of classrooms has meant cutting 25% of staff salaries from everyone not in the President’s Office. Staff such as Luce now teach from rusty shipping containers found on the beach.

On my right is Will Regret-Diss, head of linguistic operations at BigTech Inc. Please speak slowly when asking Will questions since, being a coder, he has now evolved to search the Internet, including GitHub, before writing or saying anything. We are hoping for basic functions to be automated in the next beta release. You may now ask questions.

Journalist: Si Fi, Celebrity Fluff magazine. With recent films portraying linguists as the saviours of humanity, could you comment on linguistics becoming more fashionable?

Mo: As you can see from all three of us wearing matching sweater vests, comedy ties and leather trousers, linguists have always been at the height of fashion. As you can tell by University budgets, our departments are also commonly recognised as the hub of research innovation. Do you two have anything to add?

Luce: Yes, I think it’s important to note that Untimely magazine recently called formal semantics the field “most likely to lead to people changing the subject at parties” beating strong competition from theoretical accounting, urology and ‘something funny happened to my toenail, wanna see?’ That should count for a lot.

Another journalist: Cap Tilatist, WhatJob website. Could you say something about the job prospects for linguistics graduates?

Will: [long pause] Linguistics is the scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. A job, employment, work or occupation, is a person’s role in society. More specifically, a job is an activity, often regular and often performed in exchange for payment (“for a living”). I think that says it all.

Mo: There are excellent tools for planning linguistics careers. We would refer you to them.

Journalist #3: Random Intern, Speculative Grammarian Corp. Could you say something about accusations that linguistics is just an excuse to fly to exotic places?

Mo: I got to go to a hotel with a flushing toilet once.

Luce: What’s a hotel?

Will begins to type.

Mo & Luce: Will, no!

Press Conference ends.

Overheard in the Linguistics Student LoungeChesterton Wilburfors Gilchrist, IV
Of the Abnegation of the Institute of ImladrisFound among the papers of J. R. R. Tolkien by Deak Kirkham
SpecGram Vol CXCIII, No 2 Contents