I Can Has Dichotomy??

The Daily Kitten’s chat room is becoming a mother lode of source material!  I have Arcalian to thank for this one–gratitude FUZZ!

LOLBAT saves the day!
LOLBAT saves the day!

So how in the name of Merriam-Webster can I support this obvious abrogation of proper English grammar and spelling?  Simple–it’s funny!

Let’s face it, would Al Jolson have had as much impact if his one spoken line in The Jazz Singer been “You haven’t seen anything yet”?  Would we UGa alumni get as fired up shouting “How about those dogs?”  If Huckleberry Finn had used proper English, who would have been absorbed in his adventures, or would he have had them at all?

Don’t get me wrong.  I still believe that if I could find the person or persons responsible for developing text message slang, that as an English teacher, my slow, torturous cold-blooded murder of them would be found to be justifiable homicide in any courtroom for all the remedial teaching I have been forced to do–with HONORS students, no less!

That doesn’t mean we can’t have fun with our language, as long as it’s done in the right place–sites such as I Can Has Cheezburger are a great example!  It all started with HappyCat.

The animal species expanded with the very next post–there are now lolbunnies, and lolhamsters.  Most famously, the lolruses stay in search of their stolen bukkit–a saga that has not only inspired a movie but even an invented storyline for 24 (that has, sadly, been removed from YouTube).  A lolcat version of religion has even emerged.

As popularity grew, ICHC branched out as well.  There are now sites for loldogs (or “goggies,” as the lolcats refer to them),  funny graphs, political humor, doppelgangers, and (most recently), an outsider’s view of English.  Checking out “lol”s brings joy to me, and often makes me say “Dang, I wish I’d thought of that!”

And that’s not entirely a bad thing….

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1 Response to “I Can Has Dichotomy??”


  1. 1 Instinct August 29, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    I would say that it’s not the fact that the English language is subjected to this kind of treatment, it is funny. It’s about breaking the rules.

    It’s perfectly acceptable to break the rules when you understand them. Once you have a functional understanding of the language then you are free to do whatever you like because you understand how it is supposed to work in the first place.


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