Date: Wed, 14 Jun 1995 04:37:57 -0400
From: "M. Lynne Murphy" 104LYN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]MUSE.ARTS.WITS.AC.ZA
Subject: Re: new phrase
One problem, abstruse as it may, with "email" sans hyphen or cap E, is that it
looks too much like the French word for enamel, as in those beautiful Limoges
plates in the Frick (for you New Yorkers) and elsewhere. Anyway, the pattern
would presumably call for a hyphen and/or cap E. After all it's D-Day, not
dday, g-man (perhaps a better fit, since that's a description like e-mail
rather than a name like D-Day), K rations (not krations),... I think it's
productive, too: I've seen b-day and B-day (for birthday).
but...i (and those in my great sphere of influence) use bday and cmas
(christmas)--the former is quite wide spread among those who mark the
joyous season of lynneukah (otherwise known as the 8 days of lynne's
bday). (only 110 shopping days left! shop now and avoid the rush.)
these are better than "krations" because, in english, you'd have to
syllabify the "b" before "day" and the "c" before "mas", but the
"kr-" works as an initial cluster. (the k rations e.g., is kind of
cheating, though because it's not hyphenated in the first place.)
similarly, email will work because you can pronounce it as spelt.
i'm trying to think of other things that might start with hyphen-
separated vowels in order to test this but cannot. aline (a-line)
skirt would not work, but the spelling indicates that the "a" should
be short, so that might explain that. we'd need other cases where
the spelling rules don't conflict with the dehyphenization.