tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Fri Jan 04 11:44:14 2002

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> >At this point, nobody has presented me with an example of QAO that makes 
> >sense...
> >The truth is, if Okrand ever uses QAO or explains to us how it could be 
> >used, we can use it. Until then, we can't. There are too many 
> >counter-examples for this to be a simple matter of "Well, it's okay to do 
> >it; Okrand just hasn't gotten around to it yet."
> In this sense of 'counter-example', it seems to me that the (hypothetical) 
> fact that I've never seen a bird or bat means that there are no flying 
> animals.  To me, saying that Okrand has not used it is not a 
> counter-example.  (I guess we'll just have to disagree on this point.) The 
> example I provided of the suffix {-'e'} shows that there is at least one 
> thing Okrand didn't 'get around to' until after Klingon speakers began using 
> it.

When Okrand gave us an example using the verb {SIv} in a Sentence As Object, he 
did not, as expected, have it follow a question. He made a point of explaining 
that from a Klingon perspective, this made sense. While I don't remember the 
specific example, I do remember that it was something very similar to:

pawpu' HoD 'e' vISIv.

"I wonder if the captain has arrived."

The point of note here was that he explicitly said it would NOT be of the form:

*pawpu''a' HoD 'e' vISIv.*

*"Has the captain arrived? I wonder about that."*

This struck me as a clear message that while Okrand reserves the right to come 
up with some QAO example in the future, for the time being, a prime example of 
an expected possibility of QAO was dismissed as invalid. This is, in my 
opinion, a counter-example. It is more than a mere omission of an example.

> >Wouldn't it be better if we just learned how to speak Klingon better? If 
> >that task were achieved already, we wouldn't be writing about Klingon at 
> >all. We'd be writing IN Klingon. We are so far from that goal that now, 
> >whenever someone DOES write something in Klingon, people complain because 
> >they can't understand it.
> Well, ignoring the fact that we lack the necessary vocabulary to discuss 
> this kind of thing in Klingon, yes, it would be better.  And it is a pity 
> that people get upset when someone writes in Klingon.

I got my real start working with the language when Krankor, then the only 
grammarian on the list, got fed up with people yammering in English, often off-
topic and only accasionally even ABOUT the language, and made a vow to write 
only in Klingon for a month. He appointed me as his translator.

Note again that Krankor was the only grammarian on the list at that time. 
Whenever anyone had a question about the language, he answered it in Klingon 
and I had to follow up with an English translation.

My skill at using Klingon went from near nothing to very nearly the expertise I 
have now all in that one month because suddenly I had a large supply of well 
written Klingon that I had to translate. Things started making sense that had 
been confused before, since before that time, as often as not, if something was 
written in Klingon on the list, it was written badly by someone who was either 
a beginner or simply thought they had more skill than they had. Krankor was 
neither of these.

But back to the point: Krankor was the only grammarian on the list. He answered 
beginners and held up his end of advanced grammatical discussions, all using 
only Klingon with less of a vocabulary than we have now.

If you think we couldn't have this discussion in Klingon, you are probably 
wrong, and possibly just a little lazy about figuring out how to do it. The 
only reasons I'm using English are:

1. I'm not sure you could keep up with me in the discussion and I would not 
want to make my experience with the language give me an argumentative 
advantage, since I respect you enough to want to meet your argument on your 
grounds, not mine.

2. It takes time. While I have a lot of skill at expressing myself in Klingon, 
my vocabulary skills are weak and I have to look a lot up. I wind up reviewing 
what I've written a lot of times. I am not conversationally good with the 
language. I write slowly.

'ach maja'chuqtaHvIS tlhIngan Hol Dalo'qangchugh, DIvI' Hol vIpoQbe' 'e' tob 
HoD Qanqor.
> >We don't need QAO.
> >That's the billboard-sized fact you ignore.
> >We don't need it.
> We don't need the noun 'hop' in English.  We can say 'little jump'.  That 
> way lies Newspeak. 

You miss my point once again. The English verb "hop" is useful. QAO is not.

> I think any language is enhanced by having multiple ways 
> to express an idea.  Of course, if somebody punched me in the nose every 
> time I said 'hop', I'd probably drop it from my vocabulary and stick to 
> 'little jump'.

There's a big difference between a punch in the nose and anything I say here. 
It's been a long time since I was punched in the nose, but I do remember what 
it felt like.
Of course, if you are extremely emotionally sensitive or if you've had a 
physically sheltered life, you might lose the ability to distinguish between 
these two event types, since for you, a punch in the nose is an abstract 
concept and not a distinct memory.

> Of course, that's not a very Klingon way to act.  I guess the proper Klingon 
> solution to the QAO problem for those who support it would be to use it and 
> let all the complainers go jump in the lake.

More accurately, we'll mostly just roll our eyes and otherwise ignore you.
> I don't think anything short of a prohibition from Okrand will convince me 
> that QAO is invalid. 

qatlh jISaHnIS? You seem to suspect that your significance is such that now 
Okrand has to send you registered mail before you'll start speaking decent 

Go ahead, start your own dialect. jISaHbe'. ghaytan QIvmo' QIchlIj nIyajHa' 

> Then again, I don't think anything but an endorsement 
> from Okrand will convince me to use QAO on this list.

How many other places do you speak Klingon?
> Also, you're absolutely right that this is a purely academic debate for me.  
> I don't use QAO, and I don't intend to use it unless Okrand okays it.  I 
> enjoy debate and logical discourse, and linguistics is one of my hobbies.  I 
> certainly don't intend to cause fragmentation in the community.  I think 
> we're all mature enough to deal with disagreement.  I think we all gain by 
> the open debate of this (or any other) topic.

vuDlIj neH 'oH. Holvam vISaHbej. majatlhlaHchu' Hoch vIneH. jIngachqang 'ach 
jIngach pIjHa' 'e' vItIv. ghomvam Dub mangachtaHghach 'e' vIHonbej. puSqu' 
jeSwI'pu' 'ej muS HochHom latlhpu'. bep nuvpu' law'. lugh bepwI'pu'.

We can be friends here, celebrating this extraordinary gift offered us on a 
whim by a linguist with a delightfully twisted sense of humor. We can laugh 
together. I believe that you waste this opportunity for community by needlessly 
arguing points you can't win, stubbornly evoking negative emotions over and 
over again, all for the sake of a point that you admit is not important.


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