June 5th, 2003


The Mangling of Names...

See mdlbear's post about the use of names for where this started. My response got very long, so I decided it needed to be a post to my own journal.

My last name (O'Halloran) is fairly long, but actually fairly simple by Anglo/American pronunciation rules. Even when there is a choice, the alternate pronunciations come out fairly close.

O {full stop} Hal - lor - ran (preferred)
O {full stop} Hall - or - ran

I'll even accept (as not all folks recognize the apostrophe as full stop):

Oh - all - or -ran

Every letter is used and there are no implied sounds.

So how do folks come up with:

Hull-er-en -en -en (yes, some folks echo the last wrong syllable and where did the O go?)

Hill-er-en (What's with substituting of e for o and a?)

Ah-hor-ro-ron (Hmm, Will all the O sounds added, where did the leading A come from).

And a few more that I'm now sure how to even spell out.

When I'm in a really sadistic mood, I'll let a sales droid, telemarketer or checker dangle, as they attempt to pronounce it two or three different ways.

I've actually told sales droids "If you can't even come close, how do you expect to sell me anything?"