The defense and the illustration of the English Language.

Not 1549, but 2014.

I previously wrote two articles, here and here, about the efforts of France (and Québec, since we’re on the subject) to keep their language unspotted. Many Gallic purists will point at the magna carta of La Pléiade, “Défense et illustration de la langue française,” as reason enough to fight against the encroachment of other, less worthy tongues into the only true language; in view of the recent flap over English as the language of America the Beautiful, really nothing more than a tempest in a teapot promulgated by the intellectually challenged and those devoid of any sense of humanism, I present here a dictionary of terms which must be avoided and their acceptable English alternatives.

The Xenophobe’s Dictionary List of Words for Folks who Don’t Like Outlanders.

Ketchup (from k’ē chap, Chinese for “tomato sauce”): Tomato paste with vinegar and onions and other stuff what makes it a vegetable for school lunches.

Kangaroo (from Australian aboriginal): Big Jumping Rat that makes fine eating.

Cola (from West African languages (Temne kola, Mandinka kolo): That brown drink what goes good with rum.

Coca-Cola (From from Quechua cuca and “cola” above): Something from that liberal-ass un-American company what right-thinking ‘Murcans won’t touch with a 10-foot pole. Even “Big K” has better stuff.

Jukebox (possibly from Wolof and Bambara dzug through Gullah + box): Record-player thingy what you put quarters in.

Candy (from Arabic قندي qandī, sugared): Dayum, you mean mah lemon-heads wuz invented by the A-rabs? Sumbitch, I’ll just have to switch to chawin’ terbacky. Say, Clem, gimme a chaw.

Tobacco (From Taino, a Caribbean language. Said to refer either to a roll of tobacco leaves or to the tabago, a kind of Y-shaped pipe for sniffing tobacco smoke also known as snuff, with the leaves themselves being referred to as cohiba): Stuff you roll up and stick in your mouth and then set on fire. [1]

…..

Well, you get the idea. In fact, purging our English language of all foreign influence would be an exercise in futility, for even Old English was liberally infused with Latin as the result of a 400-year Roman occupation, as well as being a combination of dialects prevalent in the area, including the languages of the Celts, the Angles, the Saxons, and the Jutes. There is no “pure English,” and if you tried to take away all the foreign influences our language has not only survived but reveled in over two thousand years, we’d be reduced to speaking in grunts and belches. Oh wait, a lot of people haven’t got much farther than that anyway.

The Old Wolf has spoken.


[1] Thanx and a tip of the hat [2] to Bob Newhart
[2] Thanx and a tip of the hat to Bill Holman