LINGUIST List 13.1106

Sun Apr 21 2002


Editor for this issue: Karolina Owczarzak <>


  • Richard John Harvey, LINGUIST LIST KIDNAPPED! Breaking News
  • Richard John Harvey, T-SHIRTS TOTE-ALLY TRENDY

    Message 1: LINGUIST LIST KIDNAPPED! Breaking News

    Date: Sun, 21 Apr 2002 16:00:12 -0400 (EDT)
    From: Richard John Harvey <>
    Subject: LINGUIST LIST KIDNAPPED! Breaking News

    *** EXCLUSIVE!!! ***


    (Read this issue online at, or at


    Breaking news has reached the desks of the MaLingua team that the famous and global reaching LINGUIST List website disappeared last night in mysterious circumstances, leaving behind only a blank page. Then terror was struck into the hearts of the LINGUIST List crew when this morning detectives investigating the case discovered a crudely written ransom note confirming everybody's worst fears: the site had been kidnapped. The note was signed by the International Front for Website Equality (IFWE), and was written in the IPA.


    Helen Aristar-Dry, moderator and longtime stalwart of the list told MaLingua in an exclusive interview "I was shocked! I couldn't believe my own eyes. I came in to work this morning as usual, switched on my computer and the site was gone. I was devastated." Things escalated when at 11am a phone call was received at the office from the perpetrators of this heinous crime, ordering Anthony Aristar to step outside the building alone and pick up a package that had been left by a trash can. Inside this package was the severed left sidebar of the website, proving beyond a doubt that the kidnappers were far from kidding. As the tension grew and fingers started to be pointed, detectives initiated one of the biggest site-hunts in the history of crime solving, in the hope that more damage to the site could be avoided. Agencies involved include FBI, CIA, KGB, SAS, Interpol, LSA and LAGB. However, as of yet the search has returned no matches and the search engine has now gone offline. The focus of investigation has centered around several prominent suspects: SIL, well known for the outrageously luxurious conditions in which their field linguists are known to gather data; who are reported to be extremely jealous about the sheer coverage that LINGUIST List gets; and the Freudian Institute of Underground Psychology, who have been heard to explicitly state on numerous occasions "Why don't we have a site like LINGUIST List in psychology?" However, revelations have come to the attention of the crack reporters at MaLingua, leading to the conclusion that this is in fact an inside job. We have in our possession certain photographs that clearly catch the kidnappers red-handed. A group of disgruntled student editors, fed up with the draconian working conditions and constant whippings dished out on an hourly basis, decided to take matters into their own hands, breaking into the office with cat-burglar like stealth, and snatching the site while the moderators were sleeping. They also took two color printer cartridges, an electric fan (possibly connected to the sudden spell of clement weather in Michigan) and a collection of pens. They also took nearly all of LINGUIST List's stock of trendy T-shirts and tote bags, causing a panic as these were to be sent out to generous linguists all around the world as gifts. Luckily Helen Aristar-Dry's forethought saved the day on this one as she had stashed a secret supply behind various candy and drink vending machines in the office, fearing that something clandestine was in the works. It is the stolen T-shirts that have proved to be the downfall of the kidnappers, believed to be run by the Polish defector student Karolina Owczarzak, whose dark and mysterious manner has often caused a shiver down the spines of many an honest linguist. The pictures we have detail Owczarzak, now going under the alias Agent O, with her trusted second in command Richard 'I use my second name John all the time to try and impress people' Harvey, selling the loot to a shady looking character who is believed to be the local gangster boss Steve Moran, who runs his operation out of Milan, MI. The pictures capture the exchange of the booty for $35.00 and ten packets of instant noodles, a veritable student feast.


    Other members of the IFWE are thought to be; Heather Taylor-Loring, who allegedly last year stole all the staples and caused havoc with the LINGUIST List job process; Michael 'Gan Canny' Appleby, whose cunning deception had us all fooled because everyone thought he was such a nice young man, when in reality he only organized this year's Fund Drive to line the pockets of IFWE; and Karen Milligan, whose connections to the Russian Ballet are believed to be a front for illegal Phoneme and NP importing. All efforts to trace IFWE, however, have proven fruitless and it appears obvious that if LINGUIST List wants its site back without further damage, they are going to have to give in to the kidnappers and pay the ransom. IFWE have demanded an extortionate $48,000. So far, in a desperate attempt to raise the cash, Prof. Aristar-Dry has sold her cat Percival to a circus as he is exceptionally talented with a unicycle, Anthony Aristar has sold most of his hair to a wig-maker, and everyone has delved deep into their tattered pockets for loose change. The total raised is $226, 1. 2s. 3d., 25 rupees and a mothball. If the cash isn't raised soon, student editors still loyal to the List will have to sell their organs. One of these students, James Yuells, said he would organize a sponsored levitation, and Naomi Ogasawara said she would stop using candles when she was working late, although how she will see to do stuff is as yet undetermined as the editors are refused access to light switches.

    A final-straw decision was made seconds before we went to press, namely that a plea should be put to subscribers of LINGUIST List, as it is well known that linguists are among the best paid academics in the world. Not much hope is being held on this course of action because an incredible 500 or so have already given recently, which is a huge proportion of the total 15,600 subscribers that we have: it is suspected that the linguistic community is now skint, flat broke, penniless, destitute etc. If you can help with the LINGUIST List Ransom Fund, or you have any information on the evil IFWE, please contact the WEBSITE POLICE at:

    You will be treated with the utmost confidentiality and you may be eligible for a reward.


    Date: Sun, 21 Apr 2002 16:02:10 -0400 (EDT)
    From: Richard John Harvey <>


    Fashion Report From Milan

    At the last week's fashion show in Milan, MI, one of the biggest and most influential gatherings of haute-couture designers in Michigan, where everybody who aspires to be somebody has to come (in the front row we spotted the great Milan entrepreneur Steve "The Boss" Moran, who is whispered to have sponsored this year's Gucci and Prada collections), a few surprising trends for Spring/Summer 2002 have emerged. Navy blue seems to be the new black of the season, appearing both in garments and accessories. Models paraded on the catwalk wearing scarcely anything but extremely sexy navy blue T-shirts with a yellow sun, or possibly an orange, and some kind of unrecognizable logo in front (our sharp-sighted reporters swore that two big L's could still be discerned among the pattern). Michael Chen, a new oriental talent designing for Gucci, thus summarized their collection: "We tried to capture the essence of the summer season. The navy blue brings to your mind the calm waves of the Mediterranean, whereas the sun, or the orange, as the case might be, symbolizes the warmth and freshness of all life awakening in spring. The two L's are just... hmm... an abstract graphic design." The collection was received with more than enthusiastic reviews. "I'm just dying to have one of those T-shirts," confessed Dina Kapetangianni, the rising star of the catwalk, with tears in her eyes, "Unfortunately, the whole batch is going to be sold at Gucci salons for $5,000 a piece, and we are not even allowed to keep the ones we were wearing at the show today." Another item that awoke a great sensation was the new tote bag presented by Prada. Prada seems to have picked up the obligatory navy-blue trend, and even the symbolism of sun/orange with double L graphic design. Gayathri Sriram, a chief fashion editor for Vogue and a great connoisseur of accessories, was ecstatic when the tote bags hit the runway. "I cannot believe that something so simple could be so in," she said, "I already started saving money for one of them." This might take some time, because the price tags on the tote bags start at $2,000. The pictures from the show can be seen at:


    Date: Sun, 21 Apr 2002 16:07:13 -0400 (EDT)
    From: Richard John Harvey <>


    Following the series of recent attacks on various web-sites, including LINGUIST List, by the notorious Unicode bomber, another terrible incident has happened yesterday morning when all involved were least expecting it. Marie Klopfenstein from Detroit, MI was in shock as she discovered that the website of her favorite grocery store had turned to little squares, and she swore the machine blew a raspberry at her when she tried to reboot it. Mrs Klopfenstein, full time domestic engineer and mother of five was outraged, "It's a disgrace, that nasty Unicode man should be put behind bars!" The Unicode bomber, believed to be a member of the outlawed UTF-8 organization, has been known to target naive individuals and organisations who in their quest for development and a pat on the back from the ISO, try in vain to input funny, non-English characters into their web-pages. A typical course of action for this scary gremlin is to wait until everyone has gone home then sneak inside your computer via the outlet fan. There he sits in wait until you switch on, and BAM, all your data turns to squares and the little beastie is laughing his socks off. Normally people are so shocked that he has ample time to get away unnoticed. In his last anonymous phonecall to MaLingua, he expressed his ideology in these words "[] [] [] [] [] []."