July 26, 2018
What kind of a person writes dictionaries for a living? It helps to have what Steve calls "an early awareness of language." It's Old Home Fortnight at Fiat Lex, where Steve and Kory talk about growing up around other languages, studying German and Czech during the fall of Communism, which dictionaries they grew up with (Random House '66 REPRESENT), and why it took Steve decades to learn the English word for "wooden spoon." While wandering through the highways and byways of language, we also touch on the minutiae of preparing for a career in lexicography, then promptly crush the dreams of hopeful lexicographers everywhere.
- "Whom! WHOOOMMM!"
- "Máte ústřední topění!"
- Steve and Kory talk about what horribly inappropriate things they read as tender and impressionable youth, which explains a lot of this podcast.
- Stamper Mispronunciation Index: none, though Kory makes a "much" for "many" mistake, so don't bother writing in to tell her. And yeah, she knows her Finnish is terrible.
July 12, 2018
Think you might be good at this lexicography racket? This episode will change your mind--or, at least, it should if you had any sense whatsoever. A good chunk of the job is mastering some of the most mundane publishing details imaginable, and that includes the subject of today's episode: the dots in the mid·dle of the head·words in your dic·tion·ary (or dic·tion·ar·y, depending on which of the damned things you're using). Steve and Kory discuss what those dots are and why they matter; Steve goes full nerdcore while dropping some head-smackingly obvious etymology; and Kory shares a major discovery which will alter the very fabric of lexicography as we know it!1
1 Not really, but it sure is fun to think such a thing is both possible and interesting enough to merit an exclamation point.
- What the hell is that weird logo we use on Twitter? Steve has all the answers and they involve the word "fricative."
- Kory pretends to sing and it only sounds a little bit like a kazoo rendition of Penderecki's Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima.
- Sick of political arguments? Here's a point-counterpoint you can invest in.
- Mispronunciation Index: NONE, ABSOLUTELY NONE. Not even the one that Kory assumed was an error.