Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Thursday, October 12, 2006

A Rose By Any Other Name . . .

By Julie Coulter Bellon

I have always loved Shakespeare. When I first started reading it, I was amazed at the imagery of his words and the compelling stories that tugged at your morals. I understood it, I identified with it, and I loved it. That was part of the reason why I wanted to become a writer, to be able to create something beautiful that others could identify with, and to tell a story that had bite to it.

The language has changed somewhat from when Shakespeare was alive. Instead of, "But soft what light through yonder window breaks? It is the east and Juliet is the sun," it's more like, "Yo, that's a phat looking light you got going on behind you. Let's get your flirt on." I wonder if Shakespeare would cringe or embrace the language as it is now.

As I teach my journalism class at BYU, I am also fascinated by how many internet acronyms make their way into the papers that are turned in. Instead of wanting to create something beautiful, it seems to me that the norm of the day is to abbreviate as many words and expend as little effort as possible. If I were to take their lead, my next novel (if it had Batman and Robin in it) might go something like this:

Batman pressed the phone closer to his ear. "AYT?"

"Yeah, HCB AYT?" Robin's voice cracked as he moved away from Batwoman. She cornered him and began to run her fingers through his hair.

"I'm HLOLARAWCHAWMP watching you on the Bat-video-phone. You look nervous. Are you GTKHB?" Batman said. "Women, TADT, DYK?

"TAFT, don' t you think?" he said, TIC hoping to USAT.

"S, TMIKTLIU, but I'm TOY," Batman said with a BEG. "GTG. ST-TNG is on."

"Okay, B4N, but when you BAB or are BAC, LMK. Until then LLAP." Robin said.

"CMIIW, but that's not ST-TNG, that's ST," Batman snapped. "CUL8R."

"Okay, C4N." Robin hung up the phone and turned back to Batwoman. "DYJHIWTH?"

As a teacher and a writer, it's interesting to me how fast-paced life has become and sometimes we seem to miss the beauty of creation whether it's creating a story, creating a painting, or enjoying the creations of those around us, or especially appreciating the creations of God. Are we so abbreviated in our lives that we've lost the true savor? Maya Angelou said that she takes time every day to just sit and ponder and look out her front window. I like to do that, too, because is slows everything down for a moment and dissolves the clutter for me and lets me feel. I don't want to abbreviate my life into fast-paced busy-ness. I still want to feel inspiration and vision that ignites the imagination within. I don't want to be reduced to an IAD.


Acronym Dictionary (for those of you who don't know and might want to try to look cool in front of your teen's friends.)

AYT-Are You There?

HCB-Holy Cow Batman

HLOLARAWCHAWMP--Hysterically Laughing Out Loud And Rolling Around While Clapping Hands And Wetting My Pants

GTKHB-Getting to Know Her Better

TADT-They All Do That

DYT-Didn't You Know

TAFT-That's a Frightening Thought

TIC-Tongue in Cheek

USAT-Use Some Avoidance Techniques


TMIKTLIU-The More I Know The Less I Understand

TOY-Thinking of You

BEG-Big Evil Grin

GTG-Got to Go

ST-TNG-Star Trek-The Next Generation

B4N-Bye for Now

BAB-Build A Bridge

BAC-Back At Computer

LMK-Let Me Know

LLAP-Live Long And Prosper

CMIIW-Correct Me If I'm Wrong

ST-Star Trek

CUL8R-See You Later

C4N-Ciao For Now

DYJHIWTH-Don't You Just Hate It When That Happens

IAD-Internet Acronym Dictionary

EOD-End of Discussion


At 10/12/2006 12:12 PM, Blogger Ian said...

I think it is sad that our language is degrading. I personally avoid acronyms for the most part. I don't mind taking a couple of extra seconds to type out the whole thing. Besides, who actually is "Hysterically Laughing Out Loud And Rolling Around While Clapping Hands And Wetting My Pants" as they write the unruly HLOLARAWCHAWMP acronym. Who has time to memorize that one anyway?

Is it sad also that the only acronyms that I understood were ST and ST-TNG?

At 10/12/2006 12:25 PM, Blogger RobisonWells said...

You know, the acronyms that bug me most are the ones used by otherwise-normal people (ie, not text-messaging teenagers).

My most hated are those that refer to family members: BIL, SIL, and MIL are bad, but there's no internet acronyms that make me pray for apocalypse more than DD, DS, and DH (and also the child-number abbreviations, like D4 or S8). Holy crap.


Post a Comment

<< Home