Weekend Trivia -- Sunday

midnightsmum (Z4, ON)July 22, 2012

Happy Sunday Morning, Cottagers!! It clouded over yesterday afternoon, but still no rain. Now they're talking about tomorrow, maybe today!! It just skids away from us, so we'll see.

It was a long week at work!! I am so glad to have my Sunday morning, when I can rise and do as I please. My headset at work was wonky, so I was having trouble hearing the customers correctly, which is endlessly frustrating for me, and for them!! It turned out not to be the headset, but something else far more technical, which was finally corrected. Now I have a day to myself, with no big plans!! Yea.

Well it is a word that was coined in 2000, to fill what some saw a gap not only in English, but other languages too. American writer Sylvia Wright coined the term, 'mondegreen'. In his article on mondegreens, Steven Connor explains the theory that mondegreens are the result of our brains' constant attempts to make sense of the world. Hmmm, have I given it away already? Did you already know? Kind of a cool thing, this. I'll be back with clues!!

Nancy.

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thinman(Z5 MI)

The answer to this is somewhere in my brain. I know it is. I have definitely read about it in the fairly recent past and I'm trying to shake it loose from some cranial crevice. I think it may have something to do with songs. Maybe.

TM

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:20PM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

Waiting for more clues.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:29PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Well, yes TM, songs, poems. Things that tend to be listened to, or repeated by rote, as opposed to read.

Ho, what a day!! It is still hot, I forget that sometimes. It just takes my energy away. I finally got my old turntables hooked up!! Going to kick back, listen to Hendrix, and maybe have a tequila later!!

Nancy.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:40PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Yikes - I just saw the time I posted the original question - I am sorry to be so late. I was sure it was around 9 am, but I am so stupid with this heat....

Nancy.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:55PM
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thinman(Z5 MI)

I remember listening to CCR a lot and trying to figure out exactly what the heck John Fogerty was saying. That boy was not big on diction, but he could sure pick and play. Still can.

TM

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 4:00PM
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thinman(Z5 MI)

I meant pick and sing. Pick and play? Kind of the same thing.

TM

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 4:03PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Yep, there is a bathroom on the right, TM!!

Nancy - as a side note - have you seen the new series last year, The Finder?? 1st episode is about someone stealing Fogarty's favourite guitar!!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 4:33PM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

Think I've got it now. Has to do what one thinks vs what is, right? I've never been a big fan of native son Dylan because I had no idea what he was singing.

The Pledge of Allegiance is one said by rote and kids often get wrong.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 5:16PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Interesting bit of trivia about Dylan and the way he pronounced, or didn't pronounce lyrics!! He did it to emulate his hero, Pete Seeger, only to find out he sang like that for a time cause he'd had a stroke!

There are also some Bible verses people get wrong, as well. Sadly, the only thing I know about your Pledge of Allegiance comes from a Star Trek episode, where they travel through time to a place where only children exist. They kids repeat a 'nonsense' verse, till Kirk figures out it the Pledge of Allegiance. Interesting, says Spock!

Nancy - I'll wait to see if Annette stops by before the reveal~~

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 5:31PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Late to the game, I've been outside pulling pea vines, weeding and all kinds of neat stuff. It started to pour so made it as far as the greenhouse, stayed there until it let up a bit, then dashed for the house. Right now it's thunder and lightening so I guess that's the end of gardening for today.
I'm in the dark as to what the answer is today, the light bulb doesn't seem to want to turn on :(.

Annette

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 6:38PM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

I don't know why it is called a mondegreen. One makes up words or phrases for those that are not understood or heard correctly. In the Pledge some say invisible instead of indivisible. Can't think of any examples personally though expect that I did the same with songs as I've loved to sing since I was a wee lass.

I am also a Trekkie so know the show you are referring to, Nancy. Spock probably said "Interesting" as often as Bones said, "...I'm a doctor, not a....".

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 3:47AM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

Oh, also the trivia about Dylan's muddled lyrics was...interesting! My kids are big Seeger fans. Will ask them tomorrow if they know that bit.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 3:52AM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

Well, here I am late again today. The heat has seeped into my brain!!

A mondegreen is the mishearing or misinterpretation of a phrase as a result of near homophony, in a way that gives it a new meaning. Or, an aural malapropism. It most commonly is applied to a line in a poem or a lyric in a song. American writer Sylvia Wright coined the term in her essay "The Death of Lady Mondegreen," published in Harper's Magazine in November 1954. "Mondegreen" was included in the 2000 edition of the Random House Webster's College Dictionary. Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary added the word in 2008. The phenomenon is not limited to English, with examples cited by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, in the Hebrew song Hava Nagila (Let's be Happy, or in my case, have a tequila)", and in Bollywood movies.
A closely related category is the soramimi, which are songs that produce different meanings from those originally intended when interpreted in another language.

As a child, Wright heard the lyrics of The Bonny Earl of Murray (a Scottish ballad) as:

Ye highlands and ye lowlands
Oh where hae you been?
Thou hae slay the Earl of Murray
And Lady Mondegreen

It eventually transpired that Lady Mondegreen existed only in the mind of Sylvia Wright, for the actual lyrics said that they "slay the Earl of Murray and laid him on the green." And to this day Lady Mondegreen's name has been used to describe all mishearings of this type!

Common Mondegreens:

~Surely Good Mrs. Murphy shall follow me all the days of my life ("Surely goodness and mercy" from Psalm 23)

~The wild, strange battle cry "Haffely, Gaffely, Gaffely, Gonward." ("Half a league, half a league, / Half a league onward," from "The Charge of the Light Brigade")

~"where the grapes of wrath are stored" was misheard as "where the grapes are wrapped and stored"

~"Gladly, the cross-eyed bear (from the line in the hymn "Keep Thou My Way" by Fanny Crosby, "Kept by Thy tender care, gladly the cross I'll bear") Carroll and many others quote it as "Gladly the cross I'd bear".

~There's a bathroom on the right (the line at the end of each verse of "Bad Moon Rising" by Creedence Clearwater Revival: "There's a bad moon on the rise")

~'Scuse me while I kiss this guy (from a lyric in the song "Purple Haze", by Jimi Hendrix: "'Scuse me while I kiss the sky").

~"Blinded by the Light," a cover of a Bruce Springsteen song by the Manfred Mann's Earth Band, contains what has been called "probably the most misheard lyric of all time". The phrase "revved up like a deuce" (altered from Springsteen's original "cut loose like a deuce") is frequently misheard as "wrapped up like a douche".

~Jack Lawrence's misinterpretation of the French phrase "pauvre Jean" ("poor John") as the identically pronounced "pauvres gens" ("poor people") led to the translation of La goualante du pauvre Jean ("The Ballad of Poor John") as The Poor People of Paris, which in no way hindered it from becoming a major hit in 1956.

~The title of J. D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye comes from the main character, Holden Caulfield, mishearing a sung version of the Robert Burns poem Coming Through the Rye: the line "Gin a body meet a body / comin' through the rye" is understood as "Gin a body catch a body / comin' through the rye."

Reverse mondegreen:

There are compositions which appear nonsensical but which can be interpreted homophonically as a rational text.

A prominent example is "Mairzy Doats", a 1943 novelty song by Milton Drake, Al Hoffman and Jerry Livingston. The lyrics are a mondegreen and it is up to the listener to figure out what they mean.
The refrain of the song repeats nonsensical sounding lines:

Mairzy doats and dozy doats and liddle lamzy divey
A kiddley divey too, wooden shoe

The clue to the meaning is contained in the bridge:

If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, a little bit jumbled and jivey,
Sing "Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy."

The listener can figure out that the last line of the refrain is "A kid'll eat ivy, too; wouldn't you?", but this line is sung only as a mondegreen.

Anyways, I could go on and on, but you get the idea!! Fun with language.

For TM and Bobbie:

Thanks for playing!! We'll see you next week, same time, same station!! And Bobbie, we used to have a DJ on the local rock station who would wittily say,"Closed captioned for the Dylan impaired"!!

Nancy.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 11:35AM
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thinman(Z5 MI)

Fun stuff, Nancy. Thanks for providing it for our viewing and thinking pleasure.

TM

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 1:35PM
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midnightsmum (Z4, ON)

And we got rain yesterday!! A friend and I drove down to the Seaway yesterday afternoon, and as we drove back, it stormed and rained - a pretty good rain too. It won't bring the aquifer back, but they say maybe more tomorrow!!! Yea!!!

Nancy.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 10:34AM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

Thanks for the many examples, Nancy. While digging through the attic as a kid we found a stash of piano sheet music from my mother's piano lessons days. Included was "Mairzy Doats' which we found hilarious. Mom later taught us how to sing it and it still pops in my head every now and then.

Closed captions indeed!

Our heat and humidity is supposed to break tomorrow. We've had over an inch of rain this past week with rain during the evenings and most of yesterday. Looking forward to a visit to the MN Arboretum on Friday when high temp is to be only 79 degress F.

Bobbie

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 4:52PM
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