[tlhIngan Hol] bom tIQ vItu'

Mark E. Shoulson mark at kli.org
Mon Nov 1 16:54:41 PDT 2021

On 11/1/21 18:52, SuStel wrote:
> On 11/1/2021 6:39 PM, Mark E. Shoulson wrote:
>> (I know, I don't usually answer here.  Fact is, I hardly ever even 
>> see posts from this list _except_ ones from SuStel, which for 
>> whatever reason aren't sorted into the right mail bucket.  But just 
>> something to mention.)
> chaq .name par QIn pojwI'lIj.
chaq; jISovbe'.

>> On 11/1/21 11:54, SuStel wrote:
>>> We have different words for the noun /wind/ and what it does, 
>>> /blow./ I'm not sure Klingons would say things like *SuS SuS* /the 
>>> wind blows,/ because it's just saying the same word over again. I 
>>> suspect they'd say something like *SuS 'e' DaQoylaH'a'*/Can you hear 
>>> it blow?/ meaning, sort of, /Can you hear that it is windy? /This is 
>>> just my guess.
>> Not that there's anything wrong with your suggestion, but do note 
>> that "just saying the same word over again" is not all that uncommon 
>> or strange-sounding in many languages.  You can live your life or die 
>> a horrible death; W.S. Gilbert's Judge in _Trial by Jury_ sings of 
>> how he "danced a dance," or you can sing a song.  OK, these are not 
>> _precisely_ the same words, but you could probably find examples like 
>> these that have the same word.
> That's true, and I'm probably overreacting. But I think it's the exact 
> repetition that bothers me.
> "Excuse me, darling, but what is it exactly that you do do?"
Yes, "do do" is a known howler, as we use "do" as an auxiliary verb a 
lot and particularly for emphasis (because we always use it for 
negation, and dropping just the negation part leaves a marked form of 
the verb.)  And "doo-doo" is a funny word with cultural loading and 
that's important too.  We don't have a problem with "had had", or even 
"that that" ("He had had an idea that that which had been bothering her 
was beyond his comprehension.") I sometimes try to train myself to say 
"indeed do" instead of "do do" for those emphasis situations, with mixed 
results.  And "danced a dance" only fails the identical word test 
because of tense; if it happened in a different tense or mood, you could 
easily ask if someone could dance a dance on the tightrope.  You can 
also "walk the walk and talk the talk," though that is definitely a 
special phrase and colloquial.  Less common ones might be, I dunno, you 
could sneeze a tremendous sneeze or... well, actually it is completely 
normal and common to smell a smell ("a smelly smell that smells... 
smelly.")  Eh, whatever.  I don't think the duplicated word is 
necessarily going to sound marked (though surely people would notice it, 
even as we can notice these.)  And there could be quibbles about the 
agentless use of SuS.  Does a wind blow the same way that kindling 
burns?  If so, that's probably not so great in Klingon, having it as the 

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