• Twitter
  • Facebook
News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Praise be

Here's a line from a story in the Richmond paper,

Richard Bryant ordinarily accepted his kudos for victories on the football field as coach of the Red Devils

and a quiz. What's wrong with the following sentence? The kudos received by the coach is much deserved.

Give up? Nothing. It was a trick question. You know, if it weren't for newspapers, that word would have died out a long time ago.


Harl Delos
Thu, 07/17/2008 - 9:25am

You know, if it weren

Thu, 07/17/2008 - 3:24pm

" ... or if you

Leo Morris
Thu, 07/17/2008 - 3:45pm

The "s" and the "z" are close together, so maybe we ought to cut Harl some slack. Unless, of course, he really IS talking about "sulu time," as in "I'll get right on that tomorrow, if you don't mind, Capt. Kirk -- today, I'm exploring my sexuality."

Harl Delos
Fri, 07/18/2008 - 12:16am

But Leo, Bartleby has a point - that typo does sound really dumb.

I've never investigated. Doesn't "Zulu Time" derives from "zero-based time", just as they use D-Day, H-Hour, etc.? In the NATO phonetic alphabet, it's alpha, bravo, charlie... and zulu for z. In the Western Union phonetic alphabet, it's adams, boston, chicago... and for z, they use zero.

The late John W. Campbell, about 40 years ago, was writing about Navajo code-talkers in WWII, and suggested coming up with a phonetic alphabet where the spelling disagreed with the sound, as a way of confusing furriners who were eavesdropping.

That is, something like knight standing for k, mnemonic standing for m, opossum standing for o, pneumatic standing for p, etc. He asked for readers to mail in suggestions, but he only ever came up with suggestions for about 20 of the 26 letters.