A bunch of cunts, mostly in the Australian sense. Except that one guy.

How do you pronounce "coax"?

As the word "coax" or as a shortcut for "coaxial"?

Neat.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shibboleth

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 5th, 2005
Depends upon the context. I don't know if it really qualifies as a shibboleth.
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
Without context I would have gone for "cokes". Does that make me an outsider?
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Same as Mat.

It's a funny assertion, but not a technically correct one.
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
When I saw "shibboleth" all I could think of was H P Lovecraft's "At the Mountains of Madness" but that will tell you more about my mind than anything else.
Permalink Joel Goodwin 
August 5th, 2005
Also I knew what a shibboleth was without reading the Wikipedia entry, do I win a prize?
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
You get Yoey's free coke.
Permalink Joel Goodwin 
August 5th, 2005
There was a whole episode of the _West Wing_ about (and titled) shibboleth, which included the phrase "Faith is the true Shibboleth":

http://www.crossings.org/thursday/Thur0426.htm
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 5th, 2005
When using it as a short form of coaxial, I tend to spell it "co-ax". It does tend to be context specific.

I rarely try to 'coax' an animal out of a hole, but if I did I'd pronounce it 'cokes' as others have said.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 5th, 2005
I learned what a shibboleth was from Boy's Life magazine, probably back in 1985 or 1986.

I even remember the story it was in now, jeez. It was about androids invading some sort of human colony somewhere and the only way to determine who the intruders were was to ask everyone "What rhymes with orange?". Humans would of course answer that nothing did, but the androids would keep processing the question until their brains overheated and they shut down.

Kind of a lame plot device actually but to an 8/9 year old it was genius. :-)
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
+++I rarely try to 'coax' an animal out of a hole, but if I did I'd pronounce it 'cokes' as others have said.+++

I know what you mean, Allan. Once the gerbil has died it's more a matter of seizing and pulling (often with forceps) rather than "coaxing". Although I guess you could describe it as "coaxing" if you were being gentle about it (but where's the fun in that?)
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
Joel: I gave away my free Coke to a coworker.
Permalink Yoey 
August 5th, 2005
Sponge.
Permalink Philo 
August 5th, 2005
Sponge?
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
To my ears, that doesn't rhyme with orange.
Permalink Joel Goodwin 
August 5th, 2005
I pronounce it correctly, naturally, in all contexts.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
In what dialect of English is 'orange' one syllable and/or pronounced without a short 'e' sound (shwah?) in the second syllable?
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
Unless you mean that sponge is a shibboleth.
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
"In what dialect of English is 'orange' one syllable and/or pronounced without a short 'e' sound (shwah?) in the second syllable?"

In every dialect where a semicircle isn't 180 degrees. [grin]

In the meaning of "direct phonetic matching" then sponge and orange aren't close enough for most pedants. But for use in poetry (generally what's going on when the question is asked), there are far worse matches that have made it into classics.

Prithee, I love you, your face round as an orange
The sun glistens, my heart races, now hand me that sponge.

Nah, maybe not. [g]

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 5th, 2005
"Syringe" is the closest rhyme I can think of (although that all depends on your accent; I pronounce it with a hard O, but if I had a mid-western drawl it would be more like "ahhhhrange") I'm fairly certain there is at least one *actual* rhyme for orange; Stephen Fry mentioned it on an episode of QI, but I can't for the life of me remember it.

If we allow two words, "door hinge" is pretty close, and there are hundreds of half-rhymes...

Now, what rhymes with "monitor"?
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Merrimack.
Permalink Peter 
August 5th, 2005
"Bonnet 'er", as in, "Throw her in the trunk."
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
Oh wait you people call that a boot. The bonnet's on the other end isn't it?

Ah well scratch that.
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
Now, what rhymes with "monitor"?

Auditor
Permalink bpd 
August 5th, 2005
auditor?
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
Blast!
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
Prithee, I love you, your face round as an orange
The sun glistens, my heart races, now hand me that sporran. G,
I must adjust my kilt, the wind hast overcome me.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
Auditor rhymes with monitor? You must pronounce one (or both) of those words *very* strangely. So, is it "odditor" or "mornitor"?

Americans are weird...
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Actually, it is "odditor", at least in the midwest U.S., which is technically supposed to be accent-less. At least for the U.S.

I spent a semester in London, but don't think I've had the priviledge of hearing someone say "Auditor." How do you pronounce it?
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
I pronounce it "Orditor." Like "plausible", "cause", "plaudits", and so forth.

Odditor? Oddball, more like... :)
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Wow, inserting consonants into words always confuses me.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 5th, 2005
> Auditor rhymes with monitor? ... Americans are weird...

There's a story I remember of John Wayne playing a centurion at the crucifixion ... he's supposed to speak his line when the skies are rent and so on:

JW: - "Truly, this man was the Son of the God!"
Directory - "No, no, John: put some more *awe* into it."
JW: - "Aw, truly this man was the Son of God!"

I've known British people have a hard tme asking for a coke in North America, as the way they say it can sound like "kike" or "keook".
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 5th, 2005
So consequently, is a 9600 baud modem a 9600 bored modem? Or an Audi TT on Ordi TT?

I don't know why "odditor" would be odd, as there is no "r" in it. It's like when my grandmother says "Worshcloth" instead of "washcloth." :)
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
s/Directory/Director
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 5th, 2005
I used to have a friend from New Jersey (sorry, Noojoizey) who pronounced "water" somewhere between "wudder" and "wooder", and I can imagine him saying "odditor" too, although I suspect it would be closer to "oddiduh".

(On reflection, I think my "auditor" is probable closer to "orditter"; I may be a poncy southerner, but I'm not that bad. :D
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
"bored" and "owdi". There may be no R at the start of auditor, but it's OR none the less. How about "caught"? Does that rhyme with "fort" or with "pot"?
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Caught rhymes with ought which rhymes with awt.
Permalink muppet 
August 5th, 2005
And Coke is pronounced like C-oh-k; the only people who would say "kike" are Americans doing a Dick Van Dyke abomination... The O may be a bit more rounded than the US equivalent, but it's still an O!
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
Muppet, you must be from the [north]east. Caught definitely rhymes with pot.
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
Mat,

With the R's thrown in there, it sounds almost more Australian to me. Though, I understand there's a huge range of accents in the UK.

When I was there, we had to get a plumber to fix some pipes in our flat. Our conversation consisted of me understanding about 1/5th of all of his sentences, then him laughing, then me laughing so as to not look like an idiot. He had the thickest Cockney (I think?) accent I have ever heard. It was wild.
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
When I was in the US I was mistaken for Australian one more than one occasion. The three accents form a sort of triangle -- to me an Australian accent sounds more like a vaguely southern US accent, with "right" pronounced somewhere between "riyt" and "rahht", but apparently to American ears it's more or less the opposite. The added "ah" sound in "right" stands out to me, but to an American I guess the added "iy" sound is more obvious...
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 5th, 2005
It's *very* common for Englishmen to be asked if they're Australian in the U.S. Sorry about that. :D

It's not a problem for me now, having been there for a bit. But as I recall, some Kiwis were upset at being mistaken for Australian, but I wouldn't stand a chance at differentiating between the two.
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
I once insulted a man from Wales by telling him I liked his English accent. Go figure.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 5th, 2005
I can imagine some Cornish or West Country folk being confused with some other colonial lot, since they make up a large part of the basic accent. Quite a lot of dialect english of any kind would be difficult for many Americans to understand, tha' knows.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
The basic difference between an Aussie and a Kiwi I once found that whilst an Aussie will drink your house dry he'll bring along sufficient replacement the next day whereas your Kiwi will just drink your house dry before you've washed your hands for dinner.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
So what you're saying, is that if I'm ever in doubt, I'll just have 'em over for a beer. :D

Of course, then I'll have to endure the *endless* insults about American beer that have been done to death.

Total digression, but in Rome I got into a Guiness pint-chugging contest with an Australian. He beat me by .5 seconds, but then he immediately threw up in his hand whilst I held mine down. Who won?
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
Did he conceal the chunder immediately afterwards and then get a refill?

If not then he may have been an emigrant, probably from East Anglia (pointless and specious derogatory remark about yet another region).
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
>> Did he conceal the chunder immediately afterwards and then get a refill?

Yes, as a matter of fact, he did. And when I say "threw up" he didn't actually let fly with all of the day's sustenance, it was basically just a small handful. Which he threw on the ground, wiped on his pants, and shook my hand with.

It had already been a very long evening. :)
Permalink Pseudo Masochist 
August 5th, 2005
Definitely an Aussie.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 5th, 2005
Watching "professional" eaters on ESPN when that happens it's called a reversal. LOL.
Permalink RAH's Love Child 
August 5th, 2005
Um, what about sporange?
Permalink Jack of all 
August 5th, 2005
Why "humourous"? Of course it's pronounced "co-ax".
Permalink argon 
August 5th, 2005
There's no way we could coax you into pronouncing it some other way?
Permalink Mongo 
August 5th, 2005
>But as I recall, some Kiwis were upset at being mistaken for Australian, but I wouldn't stand a chance at differentiating between the two.<

Pseudo, try the limus test - a card with "Fish&Chips" printed on it:

Ozzie: Feesh 'n' Cheeps (at least to a Kiwi).
Kiwi: Fushunchups. (at least to an Ozzie).
Permalink Underarm bowler 
August 5th, 2005
Or you could show them a picture of a sheep:

Ozzie: "Sheep"
Kiwi: "She busy Saturday?"

Philo
Permalink Rev. Philo 
August 6th, 2005
<obscure>
Brekeke kax co-ax co-ax
</obscure>
Permalink Snark 
August 8th, 2005
> obscure

Aristophanes' chorus of frogs.
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 8th, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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