tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sat Jun 20 14:23:44 2009

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Re: Once more into the ship in which I fled

Doq (

Weighing in late on this one...

The idea is interesting. If you'd like to discuss it as an interesting  
idea, presenting it in a less presumptive style would probably have  
been more successful.

Presenting it in a lengthy, well-reasoned, but excessively  
authoritarian style makes it seem like you wish to either have the  
idea accepted whole cloth without modification, or you are ready for a  

Holtej has more than a history in this group. He has a very  
respectful, unassuming attitude. When he speaks, he actually does seek  
discussion more than either "respect for his obvious genius and  
superior insight" or a fight.

I respect his diplomacy. He is far better at it than I am. I aspire to  
improve toward his superior example.

Meanwhile, it is quite true that your idea has no authority behind it.  
Okrand could make it true with a wave of his magic wand, like the word  
{'I'}. Or not. The rest of us can't.

People who try to append the grammar and usurp Okrand's position as  
the single authority over it have come and gone through the years on  
this list. For the most part, they don't last. Those who remain, for  
the most part, have fun with the language and accept the grammar as it  
is given to us.

Also, as it has been pointed out, you are fixing something that isn't  
broken. We can express the ideas you are trying to translate with more  
than one sentence. This is quite normal in Klingon, as Okrand said in  
the original description of the grammar in the first version of TKD.  
It's quite normal to repeat words in Klingon where you wouldn't in  
English, and to translate single, complex sentences in English into  
multiple simpler ones in Klingon.

Your idea is interesting in a meta-Klingon sort of way, but it will  
not become an accepted grammatical construction until Okrand  
explicitly accepts it. Likely, he would not do so unless he either  
felt a need to expand the grammar beyond his current description of it  
(ghaytanHa') or if it were presented to him in a way that appealed to  

Unfortunately for you, the idea isn't funny in a way that fits the  
sense of humor that dominates much of Okrand's approach to Klingon. He  
had fun making up this language. He has had a lot of fun appending it.  
Just look at his words for "birds" of various kinds. He added piloting  
terms out of respect for the loyalty that one particular pilot had  
shown to the language. It was a friendly thing to do.

Okrand is friendly and witty. He's not authoritarian and doesn't have  
a lot of interest in those who approach the language in an  
authoritarian way. He did this to have fun and to offer that fun to  
others. Check out any of his interviews (like the radio show where his  
translation of the Klingon word for "goodbye" was the sound of his  
chair scraping the floor as he pulled it back, stood up and walked  

He probably made a few bucks while he was at it, none of which were  

Enjoy the language. Don't try to own part of it. Paramount has lawyers  
who don't like that, either.

Lighten up. This isn't a joust. It's a cooperative venture.


On Jun 20, 2009, at 4:35 PM, McArdle wrote:

> --- On Sat, 6/20/09, David Trimboli <> wrote:
>> From: David Trimboli <>
>> Subject: Re: Once more into the ship in which I fled
>> To:
>> Date: Saturday, June 20, 2009, 9:13 AM
>> McArdle wrote:
>>> That strikes me as less a solution than a
>> rationalization for not
>>> finding a solution.
>> No, it's a solution which says that Klingon doesn't do what
>> you're
>> asking at all, or at least if there's a way it is unknown
>> and probably
>> unknowable without input from Okrand.
> In its own way, this is fascinating.  The responses to my suggestion  
> have mostly clustered around "you're wasting your time with this."   
> The last time this topic was raised (by Holtej last October), there  
> were a number of responses discussing the merits of his proposal,  
> and none at all suggesting that the whole discussion was pointless.   
> You yourself mentioned that MO hadn't found a way to solve the  
> problem, but went on to leave the door open by adding "I don't think  
> that comes
> directly from Maltz, however."  I took this as an indication that  
> the question was still open and further discussion might be  
> warranted (or, at the very least, not actively rebuffed).
> I understand that Holtej has a history and a standing with the group  
> that I don't, but still the difference in the responses is curious.
> Qapla'
> mI'qey

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