A Horse By Any Other Name

Why was it that some folks frequently butchered names of persons, places, and things?

For example, “Hokyo,” instead of Tokyo, “Thighland, instead of Thailand. An older couple in a restaurant, referred to jalapeno peppers, as “Joplins.” Perhaps, it was a way to make the unfamiliar make sense.

Foreign words are perhaps the easiest to stumble over.  Some French words are a mystery to me.  I’m most familiar with American English–as it applies to someone raised in the Midwest.

Something as personal as someone’s name, could be unfamiliar.  It’s less embarrassing to ask how it’s pronounced, rather than mess it up completely.

Those raised in other parts of the country, called water fountains “bubblers;” referred to carbonated soft drinks as “pop” or “soda pop;” called grocery shopping carts, “buggies.”

If in doubt do as the locals do.  Although, a hardware store caller mystified me, when working there.  She asked for “moronic acid.”  Upon further examination, she wanted muriatic acid–a heavy-duty cleaning product.

Redd Foxx, in the TV show, “Sanford and Son,” called hors d’oeuvre, “horse divers.”  It was comedic butchery, and a deliberate put-down of French cuisine.

A horse is still a horse, no matter what it’s called.  No matter where it’s from.