31 Comments

  1. The natural go-to for this joke is Caulfield, but I doubt he would say “Valentimes.”

    So another student was used for the joke. And in a school where Caulfield exists, it’s not too hard to believe she exists there as well.

  2. Oh, so this comic gets a whole thread of its own, so I guess I’ll repeat what I wrote in the Random Comments thread: he missed a chance for some word play: “Valentine performed the banned Banns” (Yes, it doesn’t make much sense if you’re doing it in secret to announce it, but hey…)

  3. OK, so now what is wordpress wroughting? I think my last comment is in moderation, but I don’t gt the usual “Your comment is awaiting moderation” thing — is this a result of them no longer having a cookie for me? The comment seemed to just disappear into the aether after I submitted it, no notice and no sign it was ever submitted. Yet, it is listed on the recent comments tab, but when you click on it, it’s not there…

    So wow, fustercluck these idiot developers are creating: they track me based on my username/email (that’s how they continue to provide me the same avatar–when I’m posting it shows a completely different avatar until I enter my email), but that tracking isn’t used to keep track of me for telling me my comment is in moderation, that was the discontinued cookie. So they both know who I am and don’t — the best of all worlds! [sarcasm] So now they are tracking me, but not providing any usefulness or utility to me or other users of the site from that tracking…

  4. You can think of it as the girl was unintentionally mispronouncing “pendant” and Frazz is the one making the observation. … or not…

    Other than the first crushing “No, you did not” I have to feel a bit of sympathy for the teacher. Yes, you get denigrated to kill-joy pendant to the child’s eternal memory while the janitor gets remembered as the cool one, but you have to do it anyway because you know if you do it enough times it will rub off.

  5. “So wow, fustercluck these idiot developers are creating: they track me based on my username/email (that’s how they continue to provide me the same avatar–when I’m posting it shows a completely different avatar until I enter my email), but that tracking isn’t used to keep track of me for telling me my comment is in moderation, that was the discontinued cookie. So they both know who I am and don’t — the best of all worlds! [sarcasm] So now they are tracking me, but not providing any usefulness or utility to me or other users of the site from that tracking…”

    That happened to me the very first time WordPress stopped allowing my email address from identifying a guest but now being an indicator of a WordPress User (I don’t WANT to be a WordPress User!) who needs to log in.

  6. larK, The priest didn’t publish the banns, he performed the ceremony. See, I can be pedantic, too. Or pendantic, if you’re a fan of the Skeptic’s Guide to the Universe.

  7. “Banned from proclaiming the Banns, he married them in secret instead.”
    “Banned from proclaiming the Banns, wedding bands were exchanged in secret.”
    …and the band played on.

  8. “The only way to get that is to not be a Gravatar user. ”

    Did I *say* I wanted to be a Gravatar user?

    And actually that isn’t so. You can be a gravatar user without having a WordPress Account as I had in the past. And I was just *FINE* not being a Gravatar use.

  9. “she’s too young to pronounce “Valentine’s” correctly, yet she knows the difference between “pendant” and “pedant.””

    Perhaps in a scene not shown, just prior to the final panel, Frazz told her what a pedant is.

  10. James, perhaps in the penultimate panel of many Frazz strips, Mrs. Olson teaches Caulfield what the word “defenestration” means. But if Mallett didn’t publish it, it didn’t happen.

  11. Going pedantic about a mispronunciation ordinarily would totally be something Frazz would do. Or Caulfield would, and Frazz would back him up.

  12. Do people mispronounce it as Valentimes? I have never heard anyone do that.

    Every year Robert has to listen me to recite the first 3 lines of my speech from my 3rd grade play – the only one I ever had a part in which I had lines of my own to say – unfortunately the third line ends leaving it sounding as if Valentine was a pedophile.

    Play was about setting the length of the various months by Father Time (yes, I know he had nothing to do with it) and the various months, each of whom want more days. February offers to have only 28 days to make it all work out. In return for her being so giving and nice Father Time gives her the leap day and also “more holidays than any other month”. Each of the holidays in February is described by a different person in a small vignette. I had to wear a bed sheet draped with safety pins into the shape of a toga (yes, I know that is Greek – this was what the teacher wanted). “Valentine was a real person. One of the first Roman’s to believe in one God of love rather than the twelve stern gods of Rome. He loved Children….” Supposedly he gave a gift to his jailers young daughter and said it was from her Valentine, which adds to the romantic end of the holiday.

  13. “Do people mispronounce it as Valentimes? I have never heard anyone do that.”

    The cartoonist likes to make up people making errors so that Frazz can be superior.

    I’ve never heard anyone say “Expresso” either but he milked that for over a week.

  14. I remember “Valentimes” being a common (but not pervasive) “little kid” error, although generally among children younger than Caulfield’s age (more like preschoolers and kindergarteners).

  15. ‘I had to wear a bed sheet draped with safety pins into the shape of a toga (yes, I know that is Greek – this was what the teacher wanted).’

    Togas are Roman…though, to be fair, the popular image of the ‘toga’ looks more like the bastard child of an actual toga and a Doric chiton.

  16. ” But if Mallett didn’t publish it, it didn’t happen.”

    That’s a pretty limited approach.

  17. Here’s a “common pronunciation problems” article that does list “expresso” (no. 13).

    https://www.thoughtco.com/hard-to-pronounce-words-4156950

    I’m torn between ridiculing/dismissing this article for its own problems (pronunciation spellings are very seat-of-the-pants and ambiguous — and some naivety about phoniology — at no. 14 for example the two indicated pronunciations are identical tho spelled out differently) , and celebrating it for agreeing with me on a couple unpopular points (no. 15, forte meaning strong point is monosyllabic!).

  18. Mitch4: I’d go with your first instinct. It’s basically just a list of one person’s preferred pronunciations, with very little rhyme or reason other than “that’s how I first heard them”. I was already wary at “Alias”; “Hegemony” tipped me to the edge, and I basically stopped reading at “knell”. It’s not because I necessarily agree or disagree, it’s just that it was so unexamined and uncritical, and very obviously “this is how I first heard it”. Is the correct pronunciation of “Saint John” “Sinjin”? Well, if you are an elitist anglophile (or have that as your surname), then probably; for anyone else, obviously not! Is “Raymond Luxury Yacht” pronounced “Throat Warbler Mangrove”?
    Why I stopped at “knell”: yes, I agree most people pronounce it “nell”, but it has a living breathing connection to its Germanic roots, and it still has the “k” in its spelling, so it’s pretty clear that the deviant dropping of the “k” sound is very historically recent; yet (s)he insists on “e-pit-o-me”, even though that’s ancient Greek, and like “hyperbole”, I’ve been hearing it pronounced as it’s spelled in English quite a lot. (I guess you could have a rule that you should never pronounce a word as it’s spelled…) So why does ancient Greek pronunciation have to be shoe-horned into modern English, but Germanic pronunciation in English is “wrong”?

    And (s)he didn’t even include my two top peeves: kai-yoat and poygih-nant (I think my strong bias is that I heard Julianne Moore say both of those, and I irrationally, viscerally, don’t like Julianne Moore, plus, of course, I don’t say them that way…)

  19. ‘Is the correct pronunciation of “Saint John” “Sinjin”? Well, if you are an elitist anglophile (or have that as your surname), then probably; for anyone else, obviously not!’

    In one of Martha Grimes’ books, the aunt from Milwaukee who tries her best to be more British than the Brits has a real problem with names . . . Ruthven is SUPPOSED to be pronounced Revven, but she doesn’t. One of the other names she has problems with is St. John . . . and she says something like, ‘If St. Francis of Assisi were British, would you pronounce his name “SinJinAss”?’

  20. I’ve heard “chimbley” and “Moonlight Sinatra” and “obbiously” but never “Valentimes.”

  21. @ larK – One major reason that English spelling is so irregular and illogical is that printing technology reached England before there was a general concensus about how things “should” be spelled, so each publisher could (and did) invent its own “standards”. Variations abounded, often in a single book or even page. Many words retained their initial forms long after their pronunication had shifted to the point that the spelling no longer matched the spoken form (see for example the purported “rhyme” between “water” and “after” in “Jack & Jill”).
    P.S. German had the “advantage” that Luther was very uniform in the spelling he chose to use for his translation of the Bible. In addition to being one of the first books ever published in Germany using movable type, it was so widely available that it became the de-facto “standard” for German typography.

  22. P.P.S. @ MiB – As a small kid, one of my siblings used to say “bas-getti” (instead of “spaghetti“). I made the mistake of telling my kids about it, and they have started saying it on purpose (mostly just to annoy me).

  23. Even in the late 18th century spelling was not set. It was Noah Webster and his dictionary in the 19th century that set spelling.

    Since spelling was not set, when old writings are studied they can figure out the accent was in different areas as the spelling would reflect how words were pronounced in the area that the writer lived as rules were not set for spelling. One cannot tell today pronounce words by how they are spelled. For example we pronounce roof “rue ff” . In the Lancaster, PA area it is pronounced “rough” but we all spell it roof. Before spelling was set someone from here might write rueff or roof and some one from Lancaster might write ruff or rough.

    One of the character interpreters in Colonial Williamsburg would talk about having seen certain words written two different ways.

  24. Also by the late 18th century the long s is falling out of use. (This is when what should be an s looks like an f – it is actually a letter called a long s and is shaped differently than an f.) Apparently the printers are starting to drop the use of the long s as it requires them to buy more type that if they used a regular s instead. It hangs around though in handwriting longer into the 19th century.

    I also just read that designation of shillings and pence with a slash was a simplification/corruption of the long s that originally separated the two.

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