No. 2549: New word order
The journalist Peter Lubin coined the word ‘sesquilingualist’ to describe people who have a smattering of a foreign language. You are invited to find a gap in the language and plug it, explaining the etymology of your coinage (150 words maximum). Entries to ‘Competition 2549’ by 12 June or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Competition No. 2546 you were invited to submit a dialogue between unlikely pairs from real life or fiction who happen to share the same surname. I would pay good money to eavesdrop on an exchange between the truculent Fall frontman Mark E. Smith and the father of economics, Adam Smith; or guardian of moral rectitude Mary Whitehouse and the boundary-pushing comedian Paul Whitehouse. But there was more than enough in the way of fruitful pairings to keep me happy in the entry this week. G.M. Davis subjects Gary Cooper, whose monosyllabic replies speak volumes, to a barrage of verbal diarrhoea courtesy of Henry Cooper. And in a similar vein, J. Seery pits Jesse James, man of few words, against Henry James, man of many.
Commendations go to John Plowman, John O’Byrne and Mike Morrison, while the winners, printed below, get £25 each and Adrian Fry pockets £30.
Gordon Brown: Now William, perhaps we could profitably utilise the time studying the rudiments of economics, commencing with prudence.
William Brown: I don’t know this Prudence, but if she’s anything like that Bott girl what hangs around my Outlaws, I’m not interested.
GB: Prudence isn’t a girl, William; it’s a form of self-discipline.
WB: Why should I want to discipline me? It’s never me what thinks I’ve done anything wrong.
GB: Let’s explore another avenue. Imagine you’ve a bag of bullseyes in your pocket. You wouldn’t consume them simultaneously, would you?
WB: I couldn’t, could I? Not if they’re ’maginary like you said.