[tlhIngan Hol] QochHa'

Will Martin willmartin2 at mac.com
Thu Aug 15 12:00:58 PDT 2019

It’s ironic, in that it’s a cultural explanation for how to use certain words, and you often and vociferously have objected to the idea that we should look at the language through the filter of “What would a Klingon say?”…

But it is based on canon, so it’s clearly valid.

charghwI’ vaghnerya’ngan

rInpa’ bomnIS be’’a’ pI’.

> On Aug 15, 2019, at 12:03 PM, SuStel <sustel at trimboli.name> wrote:
> On 8/15/2019 11:23 AM, Will Martin wrote:
>> By defining “Agree” as {Qochbe’}, we lose the ability to casually express that we neither agree nor disagree. We lose what we have for pretty much every other verb in the vocabulary. The mere negative becomes the antonym, and so the actual expression of the antonym becomes meaningless.
>> In other words, every other verb has a “be true” value of 1 (no negation), 0 ({-be’}), or -1 ({-Ha’}), but this verb uniquely has only the values 1, -1. There is no zero.
> A long time ago I was involved in a discussion about "default" Klingon qualities: how in some words English uses as "default" word a word with a positive connotation, while the negative state is described by modifying the word (e.g., happy vs. unhappy). Klingon has a lot of words where what we'd consider the negative connotation is the default, and you add a suffix to get the positive (to us) connotation.
> Okrand weighed in (http://klingonska.org/canon/1998-03-02a-news.txt <http://klingonska.org/canon/1998-03-02a-news.txt>) and said that with the word par dislike, the word parHa' undo-dislike, misapplied-dislike is more common than parbe' not dislike. He suggested that "this may be a hint at the usual way a Klingon looks at things." In other words, the presence of parHa' but not parbe' in the dictionary may be because it's more common among Klingons, not because there's a positive-neutral-negative scale going on. It's normal for Klingons to dislike something, and fairly normal to really like something, but not as common for them to be tepid in their reactions.
> So look at Qoch. Since Qochbe' and not QochHa' appears in the dictionary, we can speculate that this is another hint of Klingon attitudes. The idea goes: they consider disagreement (Qoch) a positive state, a lack of disagreement (Qochbe') a common neutral state, and strong agreement (QochHa') a somewhat rare and awkward state. Basically, Klingons don't like to go any farther than "Yeah, sure, whatever" (Qochbe') if they don't have to.
> If this is the case, and it's just fairly wild speculation, then Qochbe' is not an error, it's a cultural preference against strong agreement. Qochbe' and QochHa' mean what you think they mean, but English doesn't really distinguish between these words in a quick gloss, so the common one came out as agree and the unusual one was left out.
> Or to put it another way: if a Klingon tells you he doesn't disagree with you (Qochbe'), assume it's the best you're going to get, and accept it.
> -- 
> SuStel
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