Thursday, February 4, 2016

Who Started All This?????

Sometimes I take Xanax.  Usually just a half.  (I found out the hard way that taking a whole one makes me sleepy when I didn't have my glasses on and thought I was taking an acid reducer tablet.) Whenever I have to go to some kind of group function where there's going to be strangers..and sometimes even when it's people I know, if it's a large gathering to celebrate some real or imagined occasion I get a little twisted inside.  I usually try to avoid these type of situations but sometimes they're unavoidable. The only reason I bring this up is the name...Xanax...pronounced Zan-ax.

Why did they put an "X" at the beginning of this name?  Why not a "Z"? And if they had to use an "X", why not pronounce it Exa-nax? Wouldn't that have made more sense?

I read somewhere that Benjamin Franklin proposed getting rid of the letter "X" and I'm with him. Is it really necessary? The only time it's pronounced as an "X" is at the end of a word.  When it's at the beginning, it's pronounced as a "Z". Who would make up a word, decide to start it with an"X", and pronounce it like a "Z"? Was it just some schmo trying to be clever? Like parents who think they have to change the spelling of their kids name to something "unique"? So something simple like Sue becomes Sou?  And while I'm bitchin' about names, why is Zoe pronounced Zoey? And why isn't there a "y" at the end of Chloe? Parents just cause problems for their children growing up because for the rest of his or her life, the kid always ends up having to correct people for misspelling his or her name.

Why does the English language have to be so complicated?  Who decided how things should be spelled?  Or what letter should have what sound? How come some combinations of letters sound the same as a single letter? Is there really a reason for having two options when one would work fine? Other than confusing first graders in spelling class?

Why is bologna pronounced baloney? Shouldn't it be bo-log-na? You know how I know how to spell bologna?  I sing the Oscar Mayer song in my head from the 60's or 70's...I can't really be decade specific here because I'm old and I don't really remember which one it was.  But I know it was a long time ago..."My bologna has a first's O S C A bologna has a second name" remember? And I can still see the little boy with the curly dark brown hair singing it.  I see the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile in my head too but I don't think it was from the same commercial. (I grew up watching lots of TV. Probably explains my tendency toward Couch Potato-ness...or maybe I'm just lazy.)

Do we really have to use "ck" instead of just "k"? Why isn't rock just rok? When did they decide to put an "h" after a "w" to spell "when"?  Wouldn't "wen" have been easier? And if the "h" is so fucking important, how come "win" isn't "whin"?

Years ago I was in a Sunday School class and the teacher was having us all read verses from the Bible.  It was a girl named Elizabeth's turn to read. She was reading about some Old Testament One Per Cent'er who had lots of livestock that were being described, oxen, goats, sheep...etc.

The exact verse escapes me but this is the gist of it...

Elizabeth:  "and he had 200 she goats and 300 eee-wees"...of course, I laughed out loud immediately. Then, because she was embarrassed, I felt bad for laughing and I got nervous which made me laugh even more.  But it really was funny, even if it was embarrassing for her.  To this day, I still think it's funny...and I still laugh about it.  But if you're a kid and you see the word "ewe" why in the world would you think it would be pronounced "you"?  And I did get my comeuppance years later when having to read aloud, I pronounced stenographer...sten-oh-graffer.

It's probably not normal to get bugged by stuff as trivial as this. I can't change it so why do I let it annoy me?  It's the Stoopidist Thing...

P.S.  In protest from this day forward I'm going to pronounce Xanax..Exa-nax.  Pretty fuckin' rebellious, don't ya think?