Date: Tue, 12 Apr 1994 13:25:00 MST From: Garland Bills Subject: Re: ink pen Responding to Larry Horn's query, my dialect (North Texas, NOT a Valley boy) merges /I/ and /E/ before nasals (not just /n/ -- and these lax vowels do not occur before the velar nasal, by the way), and I have never used 'ink pen'. If disambiguation is needed I would likely say 'writing p_n' (stereotypically contrasted with a 'sticking p_n') or some circumlocution such as 'what you write with'. So for me, only repair; no 'ink pin'. Garland Bills University of New Mexico gbills[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]