Date: Mon, 10 Mar 1997 23:50:25 EST From: Larry Horn Subject: recently attested items 1) on register, context, and l-lessness: On the ABC World News Tonight Friday, Vice President Gore--a Tennessean, of course--was doing one of those tours-to-see-how-devastating-the-devastation-was along the flooded Ohio between Kentucky and Ohio. He promised that "we"--the Federal government--"will hep you". I was struck by the l-->0/__p as used by Al Gore; somehow it seems unlikely that he would have been ready to offer to "hep" the Bosnians restore peace to their land, or to "hep" schoolchildren gain better access to the information highway. I think it's also relevant that he was wearing jeans and a sport shirt for the flood tour, while the "hep"-less contexts would be ones in which he'd be wearing a suit and tie. 2) on mock- or faux-Spanish (no problemo, etc.): another formation I've come across recently is the superlative-forming -mondo, e.g. the use of both "correctamundo" and "perfectamundo" in a currently-airing radio commercial for RCA. I tried tracking them down via Nexis, and traced the former back to 1989, where the first (of 19) citations included a reference to the popularizing of the term by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Evidently, though, "correctamundo" has outlived Raffy, Leo, Mike and Don. "Perfectamundo", on the other hand, had just two cites, the earlier in 1992. Did this suffix derive from a perverse blend of -mente and mundo? Best not to know, perhaps. 3) some evidence that positive "anymore" is indeed spreading outside of its original area, even among non-linguists: The speaker is a sportscaster on local New York all-sports radio WFAN, Joe Benigno. Joe is, like me, a native Noo Yawka, and wears it proudly, r-lessness and all. He's actually a guy who used to call in so regularly that he was given his own show to host, albeit one that starts at 1:00 a.m. or so. So anyway here he is complaining about how inconsistently the home town basketball team, the New York Knicks, have been playing, just following the post-game show after "another agita special". What he says is "The Knicks are a different team from quarter to quarter anymore". Only, given the regional loyalty, they're "a different team from kwawta tuh kwawta anymaw". (Sorry for the transcription; ascii doth make dialect novelists of us all.) Somehow the combination of the indigenous vocalic clusters and the very much non-indigenous use of "anymore" struck me as particularly incongruous. Any thoughts? --Larry