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August 05, 2013

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carbon based lifeform

And doubtless Ms Fernandez Rojas is intimately familiar with the spelling and pronunciation of every name of every employee at her local Chinese restaurant.

A fiver says she doesn't know one name there. Another fiver says she won't get the connection.

Tom Foster

Ah yes, I spotted and enjoyed Icess' heart-rending piece, and even remember the original from the put-upon Aminetta. Splendid stuff.

Unrelated apart from its infeffable Guardian-ness, here's another good one:

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/04/travel-misery-tours-voyeurism

Mr Moran is just back from his hols and he's deploring… something or other. I'm not quite sure what as he doesn't really make it clear. But he did visit Osborne House on the Isle of Wight, and that gets him thinking. So how about this for a classic sentence?

'But as we commoners solemnly shuffled past the velvet rope that separates riff-raff from things the royal behind might once have rested on, I caught my wife's eye. A thought flashed between us: "Why are we woolly liberals worshipping relics of a woman who benefited from the oppression of around half the people on Earth?"'

rjmadden

like the goddess,

I bet she is.

ajf

I thought that Microsoft Word allowed you to add words to its dictionary. If so, then she could quite easily avoid the perpetual anguish of seeing her name defaced by the red squiggly line. Am I wrong about this?

rjmadden

I thought that Microsoft Word allowed you to add words to its dictionary.

It does. But the whining must go on.

Horace Dunn

“Silence and a farrowed eyebrow.”

The woman’s eyebrow gave birth to piglets? What strangeness!

“She was not related to the more infamous Riccitelli, however.”

So her friend is infamous, just not as infamous as Victor Riccitalli. Well, I’m glad she has some standards.

And I assume that when she says “proper pronoun”, she means “proper noun”.

Do they have subeditors at the Guardian?

Dr Cromarty

Since she can barely write English, it may be a fairly safe assumption that her verbal skills aren't brilliant. I pity the poor barista dealing with her mangled pronunciation and allusions to ancient mythology. As an aside my son's name, Ruairi, usually needs spelling out to English people, never mind Hispanics. Get over it.

BenSix

I've gone through my life having to spell my name for people, and I've found that it helps to have a clear, concise explanation. It is unhelpful, in other words, to assume that ageing Starbucks employees will be acquainted with Egyptian Gods and old CBS programmes. Especially when you've muddled up your references. The Secrets of Isis wasn't a cartoon.

I agree that it's polite to ask after to spelling and pronunciation of unfamiliar names, though. There's a certain type of person who assumes they're brilliant at judging them. They never are.

Trimegistus

Hell, given all the weird variations people can come up with for names like "Mary" and "Will" it makes sense to ask for the spelling every time.

I have a weird last name, so my wife and I picked fairly ordinary first names for our children. But that, ironically, makes them both unique among their friends -- especially my daughter. About half of my son's pals have names like Jack or Thomas (the other half are mostly cod-Celtic or cod-African). But ALL of my daughter's friends have unspellable agglomerations.

By giving my children common names I have made them unique.

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

I've got a family name of German origin that's simple for German speakers, but difficult for English speakers. It's no big deal to have to tell people the correct pronunciation of my family name.

And then there was the semester I spent studying in Russia. Cyrillic has the letters to transliterate my last name the way it's pronounced in English, giving Russian speakers no problem! Huzzah! That is, until everybody put the stress on the wrong syllable. And don't ask them to pronounce "Theodore", since Russian doesn't have the "th" sound. :-)

JuliaM

I shall add 'Icess' to my list of #chavnames forthwith!

R. Sherman

Heh. My mother has an unusual first name from the American South. At some point in the distant past, she just started usung her middle name. She didn't bitch about the unfairness that Yankees had never heard the name before. I need to have her write an op-Ed to complete her life. Finally, liberation at age 85!

The Cowboy Online

So the author of the article has this to say;

"If we truly want to become an inclusive society, if we want to celebrate our uniqueness, it begins with a name."

So if your name is unique - and God knows it isn't just being part of an increasingly splintered, sorry, multicultural society that's leading to an explosion in names in which there's no longer an expected familiarity in spelling - then everyone ought to make a real effort to learn how to spell and pronounce your unique name, with its unique spelling. Really, is the author just padding a throwaway comment - "people sometimes spell / say my name wrong" - to make an article, or do they really have that chip on their shoulder?

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

Trimegistus:

I find that I'm generally the only "Ted" most places I go, which is quite nice.

Dr Cromarty

Even the CiFers are giving her a doing and telling her to get over it.

David

Cowboy Online,

Really, is the author just padding a throwaway comment – “people sometimes spell / say my name wrong” - to make an article, or do they really have that chip on their shoulder?

It’s quite hard to care one way or the other. But I suppose the outpouring above counts as a display of identity politics, a subject that does tend to attract narcissists and then makes them even less aware of their own absurdities.


Horace,

And I assume that when she says “proper pronoun”, she means “proper noun”.

According to her blog and tweets, Ms Fernandez Rojas is a creative writing graduate with “an alphabet soup full of degrees,” and now teaches others how to be “amazing writers.” She’s also “Latina – but not in the typical way you might think.”

Darleen

Oh my ... I've somehow managed to live my life gently accepting that many people misspell my name (normal spelling is Darlene) without shedding tears into my caramel macchiato.

Or felt like I needed to slink home to bed to curl up in a fetal position around my pillow and wail after someone paused over or made a humorous comment about my last name "Click".

Maybe Icess should just change her name to Bob (can't spell it wrong in either direction) and let the stress go.

Or maybe that will interfere with her next article about the unfairness of people not being sympathetic to her teary, puffy eyes.

Severian

Ahhh, The Guardian, singin' the First World Blues.

I'd say it has a great beat and you can dance to it, but that's probably racist.

David

I’ve somehow managed to live my life gently accepting that many people misspell my name… without shedding tears into my caramel macchiato.

“The Guardian: Eradicating stoicism since 1821.”

Anna

All I really wanted was a venti,

That's not how you spell 'attention'.

Torquil  Macneil

"I thought that Microsoft Word allowed you to add words to its dictionary."

Presumably she was too emotionally exhausted to use the function. I sometimes think no-one on this blog has any natural human compassion at all.

Torquil  Macneil

"I've gone through my life having to spell my name for people"

That's from BenSix, but surely even with the collapse in educational standards of recent years most people can still spell 'Ben'. Or perhaps Mr Six is from Liverpool?

rxc

I thought that they write your name on the cup so that they can keep the orders straight. It is amazing how low some people set their insulted/disrespected/offended triggers. Maybe they can't figure out any other way to attract attention.

David

I sometimes think no-one on this blog has any natural human compassion at all.

I know. I’m continually aghast. [ Does aghast face. ]

Mags

I can't wait for her to visit Finland.

the wolf

Imagine the confusion if she had ordered an iced coffee.

dicentra

Am I wrong about this?

To add a word to your local dictionary, right-click the underlined word and select Add to Dictionary.

To enable or disable this feature, click the Word icon in the upper-left corner (we tech writers LOVE it when Microsoft makes their interface features SO abstract that they have no name), and then select Options.

In the left pane, select Proofing and go to the When correcting spelling and grammar in Word section. Clear the Check spelling as you type check box, and then click OK.

Hey, this is fun! I could do it all day!

Wait. I already do…

mojo

"A dead man's just a corpse. Nobody cares what his name was."
-- "The Steel Helmet

Ol' Sammy Fuller had a way with words, didn't he?

dicentra

Someone in the comments over there mentioned "Fry and Laurie," so I figured I'd post the link to the appropriate sketch: Your name, sir?

Liessa

So basically she's complaining that not everyone is familiar with every name that has ever existed, or could conceivably exist. Oh, the humanity.

People mispronounce my (Jewish) surname all the time. (To be fair, the alternate pronunciation is also fairly common, as are several alternate spellings.) It's never occurred to me to get upset about it, but then I'm not a Guardian columnist.

abacab

Oh, I guess I have been being oppressed all these years living in Foreign where people have difficulty with the name "Mike". I've had "Maik", and all manner of ungodly variations. And my surname has occasionally grown an umlaut, thereby denying me my birthright of Anglo culture and heritage.

The scales have fallen from my eyes. I am now a "victim" and in consequence more righteous than the rest of you unoppressed who need to CYP post haste.

AC1

Read the article with this on.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QI4O8byPw7g

Brian, follower of Deornoth

A Jenny is of course a female ass. Unlike an Icess.

D

My wife is foreign and most people wouldn't be able to pronounce her first name. She picked a nickname she likes that has a meaning for her and uses that.

I think she's probably complained about it less than I have about people mispronouncing/misspelling my last name. But she's Asian, I guess stoicism is still expected of them.

LS

At a takeaway restaurant years ago:

"My order is for takeaway; the name is Jeff."

"Is that spelled with a 'J' or 'G'?"

"It doesn't matter as long as you pronounce it the way I just did."

Rafi

“The Guardian: Eradicating stoicism since 1821.”

Also numeracy, facts and logic.

David Gillies

This is really just a form of peacocking: a flamboyant display meant to showcase right-on credentials to the like-minded. It's worth noting that in non-traditional Latina Icess Fernandez Rojas's native tongue, a peacock is 'un pavo real' or Royal Turkey.

Ken

Ms. Fernandez Rojas' problem is rather like the "Raymond Luxury Yacht" / "Throatwobbler Mangrove" sketch from Monty Python's Flying Circus. It's not a lot less silly, either.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyQvjKqXA0Y

sk60

And even Microsoft Word recognised Jenny as a proper pronoun, a proper person, over me;

She's being unfair to Microsoft. I'm not convinced she's a proper person either.

David

No, you mustn’t mock. Ms Fernandez Rojas just wants to “celebrate her uniqueness” by seeking “validation” from a spellcheck programme. And by inflating the trivial to sociological proportions. And by sounding like every other arrogant and whiny Guardian columnist.

Jason Bontrager
ACTOldFart

By and by, Icess sighs for nine fine iced chais.

tempdog

I'm sure Dr Muralidhar, who's NY state coworkers shortened his name to Morelli, would bleed for her.

Here's a thought, Icess: You are not a princess; it's not our problem if you have an odd name. Live with it or change it.

rabbit

I'm sure Icess is a very fine woman and only writes as if she's a spoiled hyper-sensitive princess keen to take umbrage at the slightest provocation.

Rich Rostrom

Having a slightly odd name that is continually misspelled (or worse yet, "corrected") is indeed a lifelong annoyance.

Having an odd name no one knows how to spell is probably less irritating than having a name that people will assume is misspelled.

I wonder how much hassle Peter Oborne has gone through in his life.

It is of course a "first-world problem" - unless it leads to something like a fatal medical error, or being arrested.

Is the lady really howling at the moon, or just venting over a perpetual genuine annoyance?

Heck, I vent when anyone misspells "Rostrom". (It's my sore toe.)

Namespace construction is an actual issue. One wants each entity's name to be unique, easily spelled, and clearly distinct from all others. Anyone figures out how to do that, let me know.

WTP

Wait a minute...I thought it was spelled Isis. From The Secrets of Isis, and according to wiki: Isis can command the elements of earth, air, fire and water and can control the weather. . So why can't she make her own damn coffee?

Rob

Not even a First World Problem, but a "Progressive Grievance", an issue whose relevance or importance is so microscopic that only Guardian readers can see it.

Also, simple solution when they ask for your name, do what I do, say politely "you don't need to know my name, thank you" and hey presto, you still get coffee. However, you won't get 800 words of pure victim hood out of that.

David

I denounce Rob for his uncomplicated and therefore privileged name, and for his willingness to get on with life.

sackcloth and ashes

'a lifetime of having my name misspelled and mispronounced'

I'm Welsh, and my first name gets regularly mangled by the Sais-son.

Dry your eyes out, princess.

Connor

Our Guardian columnist just wants to “celebrate [her] uniqueness” in an “inclusive society” and her spellchecking software, the subtleties of which apparently elude her, is dashing those hopes. She isn’t being “validated” by Microsoft Word. It’s how utopias die.

Thank you, David, for making me laugh on a dull afternoon.

David

Thank you, David, for making me laugh on a dull afternoon.

Well, we live in strange times and Ms Icess Fernandez Rojas is far from alone in her lack of moral proportion. For many young people, especially those who’ve been exposed to the arse-end of academia for longer than is wise, whininess is now regarded as a virtue. It’s how some people hope to make themselves interesting, if only to other idiots. Apparently stoicism is terribly old hat. Whingeing is what the sexy and enlightened people are doing now. And so by some accounts, nothing is too small or banal to be unjust or oppressive, or emotionally crushing, from hairstyles that are racist to the traumatic names of nail polish colours. Apparently these things are “microaggressions” that are “extremely triggering” and making the intellectuals of tomorrow weep into their pillows.

And as I’ve said before, this farcical unrealism is being taught and cultivated.

WTP

Rob reminds me of a trick my father used to use. He figured that whenever you went to an Italian restaurant, you give an Italian name, you might get seated sooner. German restaurant, German name, etc. etc. Seems the goddess Icessss could use her imagination a little. She's supposed to be of the creative bent, after all.

Cyrus

All she needs to say when asked is that her name is spelt like "ice", as in frozen water, with a double "s" on the end. It doesn't strike me as that hard. Although that wouldn't allow her the opportunity to link herself to a goddess, which I imagine she finds important.

As with Private Eye's recent "Woman has Baby" cover, most CiF articles can quickly be reduced to their real meaning: "Woman with unusual name has mild trouble ordering ludicrously specific coffee, whinges".

David

most CiF articles can quickly be reduced to their real meaning: “Woman with unusual name has mild trouble ordering ludicrously specific coffee, whinges”.

See also Black Man Eats Truffles.

JeremiadBullfrog

This Ann Althouse post seems tangentially relevant: http://www.althouse.blogspot.com/2013/08/feminist-blogger-suspects-that-ap-meant.html

She coins the fabulous phrase, "bolus of feminism", and says the following:

"Scan stories for minor details relating to gender, then highlight them, and make grandiose statements about the perpetuation of oppression. When the evidence is flimsy, lubricate the bolus with the notion of the subtlety of the oppression. It might be swallowable."

Replace "stories" with "your own life experiences", and "gender" with whatever the flavor of the month is, and we have the template for all unfalsifiable grievance-based Leftist fake reasoning.

Arthur Wrongly

My name is often pronounced wrongly, so get over it.

Hal

Lessee . . . someone having problems with a name. The rest of us recommending a placard to help with desired spelling and pronunciation. I've heard this before!

See http://notwithoutmyhandbag.com/blog/category/badbabynames/page/65/ and read forward . . . Very recommended . . .

cm

“I-c-e-s-s. You know, like the goddess, but spelled like ice,” I explained. “What?” she asked again.

Had she held firm at the first full stop, the whole thing would have been a non-event.

I-c-e-s-s

"What?"

"I-c-e-s-s".

Job done.

Egyptian goddess references just confuse things.

Rex Munday

It's spelled I-s-i-s. So, not only were her parents cruel, they were also stupid

David

Apparently, sniggering at the spelling errors of Starbucks baristas is now a thing among Guardian readers, who seem to imagine a ten-second interaction with someone whose own name they don’t know, and don’t care to know, is equivalent to a relationship with a dear friend or close family member. Next week in the Guardian: laughing at dyslexics and people for whom English is a second language…

Though I did quite like this dissenting comment: “This is a bit of a pot-and-kettle situation. A few weeks ago this newspaper ran, on its front page, the headline marquee ‘Plane carrying Bolivian president, Eva Morales, rerouted to Austria.’ There was no mention of when Bolivian president Evo Morales had announced a sex change.”

Marcia

Next week in the Guardian: laughing at dyslexics and people for whom English is a second language.

I bet the person serving the coffee earns a lot less than the Guardianistas laughing at them. You've got to love those class war credentials.

CJ Nerd

Darleen suggests:
"Maybe Icess should just change her name to Bob (can't spell it wrong in either direction) and let the stress go."

Unfortunately Rowan Atkinson has made the name "Bob" inherently funny- yet another form of oppression!

Liessa

Apparently these things are “microaggressions” that are “extremely triggering” and making the intellectuals of tomorrow weep into their pillows.

Yes, this is the logical consequence of the whole concept of 'microagressions'. The term originally ment 'small instances of prejudice which minorities deal with on a daily basis', but it's inevitably come to mean 'small, trivial irritations which pretty much everyone deals with on a daily basis, but only minorities get to whinge about'. And so whining about trivialities becomes acceptable, and you get people demanding 'trigger warnings' for anything that might possibly offend or annoy them in some way. Ironically, they'll often cry 'first world problems' whenever someone else complains about things they don't consider important.

AC1

As a solution she should manufacture a disposable cup with a microphone and speaker so she can say her own name and have it repeated back without the oppression of spelling intervening.
It should only double the cost...

John D

Apparently, sniggering at the spelling errors of Starbucks baristas is now a thing among Guardian readers

In a paper so notorious for typos it's got the nickname 'Grauniad'.

David

You’ve got to love those class war credentials.

Quite. But I fear the project was always destined for inadvertent comedy. I mean, the author of the article is a creative writing graduate – one with “an alphabet soup full of degrees” - who now teaches others how to be “amazing writers.” And this colossal talent, this punctilious corrector of error, is exasperated by the red squiggly lines that appear beneath her name as she types it. In fact, not only is she exasperated, it offends her politically. It makes her feel excluded, exhausted and invalid. And yet, despite this deep emotional trauma - one that’s presumably repeated day after day - she still hasn’t figured out how to get rid of those red squiggly lines.

Which I can’t help feeling is rather symbolic.

me.yahoo.com/a/QfRD2ls61Igx39LrOhu6fp6ovFBO

She should change her name to 'Bitch'. Pretty much everyone knows how to spell that.

Doubting Rich

So this idiotic woman who uses a word processor for a living yet does not know how to add a word to the dictionary in Word?

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