Date: Mon, 9 Jan 1995 15:06:34 EST
From: Larry Horn LHORN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]YALEVM.CIS.YALE.EDU
Subject: Re: Euphonizing (?) proper names
Speaking of Ms. Penix and the Fuchs families, one of my favorite ball-players
was the Yankee (et al.) utility infielder Rusty Kuntz. Pronounced, of course,
"Kyoonts" (what was his alternative?). Speaking of athletes, though, I've al-
ways wondered why there seem to be so many UNmotivated, NON-taboo-avoiding
failures of correspondence between pronunciation and orthography. Here are
some examples of this phenomenon:
Brett Favre (Green Bay Packer quarterback): pronounced "Farv"
Haywood Jeffires (Houston Oiler receiver): pronounced "Jeffries"
Isiah Thomas (Detroit Piston point guard): pronounced the way
Isaiah is, [ayZEYuh]
Malivai Washington (U. S. tennis player): pronounced "MaliVEEya"
Unlike the motivated cases (where the closest non-taboo pronunciation is
evidently the goal), these generally involve metathesis. But why?
(By the way, re Edith Juan: I assume it is indeed "eat-a-thwan", the
eatee being the waterfowl of the thame name. Not quite as neat as Mike
Hunt, perhaps, but if anyone wants to collect these, there are some long lists
available at the alt.tv.simpsons site,since one of Bart Simpson's many con-
tributions to the cultural milieu of Springfield is the covertly obscene
phone message left with the proprietor of Moe's Tavern.)