[tlhIngan Hol] Punctuation

Will Martin willmartin2 at mac.com
Wed May 22 05:41:45 PDT 2019


I’m often impressed at how good we are as a group at arguing about things and insulting each other unnecessarily. 

I know that sometimes, the insults are unintentional, stemming from the poor capacity of typed text for carrying the emotional subtleties of spoken language, and this is exacerbated by our majority male population. 

As men, we have to deal with the emotional side effects of our natural addiction to testosterone, a substance toxic at excessive levels. I, for one, didn’t ask to be bald (though I don’t mind the beard so much). I also didn’t ask to be as angry as I get sometimes, and I certainly did not intend to get in as many arguments on this list as I have. It’s like I have a personality, and then there’s a layer of testosterone poured over it, like syrup. If poured on too thick, you can’t taste anything but the testosterone.

I’m reminded of the movie scene where Thor and The Hulk have just successfully finished a battle together, and The Hulk casually blind-sides Thor with a punch that knocks him out of view of the camera. Unexpected and funny? Yes. Probably very painful for Thor, who didn’t deserve it, given how hard he just worked to do his part in battle. But hey, we’re guys, right? This is how we treat each other.

Even that is exacerbated by the warrior culture of the fictional Klingon race, which we empathize with as we learn and use their language.

Even this is exacerbated by the classical vs. romantic rift of our political decision-making here. Classical: Let’s restrict everything to being exactly what we know to be right. Romantic: Let’s move in new directions and develop a wider scope of possibilities. Art movements and politics everywhere have this struggle.

So, within the context of so much natural conflict, let’s keep in mind exactly what we are arguing about here:

1. A fictional race of aliens

2. Their spoken language — we don’t really know their written language

3. A human’s phonetic representation of their spoken language.

4. Punctuation use in the phonetic representation of the language spoken by a fictional race of aliens.

5. A publicly accessible guideline as to commonly used punctuation within the human phonetic representation of the spoken language of a fictional race of non-humans.

I don’t read the wiki as laying out the law in classical terms of restricting romantic people from using punctuation different from the rules. Instead, I see guidelines for newcomers who want to know how they can write using punctuation in the phonetic representation of the spoken language of a fictional race of aliens in a way that assists others in being able to understand what they’ve written.

You don’t have to follow the guidelines, but if you boldly go in some other direction, you might not be understood, and if you want the KLI to publish whatever it is that you’ve written in Klingon for some KLI project, you may face editorial review by an editor who would prefer that your work appear more consistent with the existing works of others, which has tended to follow the guidelines laid out in the wiki.

We don’t really need to fight about this. Use the guidelines, or ignore them, but don’t insult someone for their many hours of honest service to the community to try to provide us with reasonable guidelines for the use of punctuation in our human representation of the spoken language of this fictional, non-human race.

That’s just punching Thor out of the picture.

charghwI’ vaghnerya’ngan

rInpa’ bomnIS be’’a’ pI’.




> On May 22, 2019, at 5:20 AM, Lieven L. Litaer <levinius at gmx.de> wrote:
> 
> Am 21.05.2019 um 21:36 schrieb SuStel:
>> I know I used that term. I meant it. Whoever wrote that message about
>> Klingonists agreeing didn't perform any kind of survey or study that I'm
>> aware of; they just kinda figured that enough Klingonists used
>> punctuation that they could say Klingonists "agree" on it.
> 
> It was Holtej, obviously, who wrote that into the FAQ, but I have no
> idea on what that is based on.
> 
>> And I'm not disputing that. I'm saying I don't know of any official
> [...]
>> Do you know of any such survey?
> 
> Even if there were a survey, it still wouldn't mean anything. I made a
> survey proving that 90% prefer "Klingon" over "Klingonese", but that
> will not stop anyone from using the word "Klingonese".
> 
>> First of all, I wasn't originally talking to you; you butted in when you
>> read your name. Calibrate your words before offering them.
> 
> Well, still I somehow felt offended somehow, or at least, saying more
> neutral, I felt addressed. Each time you refer to the Klingonwiki you
> name it "Lieven's wiki", as if it were just a worthless toy that I just
> made up. Of course I was the one who set it up, but I still wish it to
> be "our" wiki, not "mine".
> 
>> Third, Wikilobbying:
>> http://www.cc.com/video-clips/6p6df7/the-colbert-report-the-word---wikilobbying
> 
> I cannot access that video from my place, but the subtitle of it makes
> clear what it's about.
> 
>> Klingons speak Klingon words. Klingons don't use English punctuation.
> 
> Klingons also don't use English letters.
> 
>> Okrand DOES use punctuation for Klingon in one place in TKD:
> 
> Just for the record: Okrand uses Punctuation in KGT, TKW, Monopoly, and
> when using long sentences in his messages.
> 
>> list mandates any punctuation beyond marking foreign terms that have
>> been transliterated, but if it does that mandate shouldn't be kept on an
>> editable wiki page.
> 
> Tell the list owner.
> 
> PS: Would it change anything to you if I lock that page?
> 
> --
> Lieven L. Litaer
> http://www.klingonwiki.net/AboutEn/Why
> _______________________________________________
> tlhIngan-Hol mailing list
> tlhIngan-Hol at lists.kli.org
> http://lists.kli.org/listinfo.cgi/tlhingan-hol-kli.org

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