Archive for Names

Fifth Third Bank

Wikipedia explains that the Fifth Third Bank's name "is derived from the names of both of the bank's two predecessor companies: Third National Bank and Fifth National Bank, which merged in 1908". But despite the fact that "[t]he bank operates 1,154 branches and 2,469 automated teller machines in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, Georgia, and North Carolina", I've managed to travel extensively in those states without ever encountering the name, until this building presented itself to us on our way to dinner last night in Toledo OH. The name seems odd at first but I guess it's memorable as a result.

Are there any other examples of names combining two ordinal numbers as the result of a merger, like the "Second Third Presbyterian Church"?

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Sorrbucks

Paul Midler submits this one from South China:

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Burp Bowl

Eating establishment near Baruch College in New York City:

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Long words

I'm in Hamburg for lectures and meetings this week.

The first day I was here, in the afternoon I went out for a walk.  After taking about 50 steps from the front door of my hotel, I saw this lettering on the glass facade of a nearby building:

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Uyghur basketball player

Article in NBC Sports (6/22/18) by Drew Shiller:  "Report: Chinese prospect Abudushalamu Abudurexiti will play for Warriors in Summer League".

Quips heard around the Language Log water cooler:

Geoff Nunberg:  "It’ll give the announcers something new to chew on, now that they’ve learned to toss off Giannis Antetokounmpo."

Barbara Partee:  "If that article has the pronunciation anywhere near right, then I'll bet his nickname will be Budu-Budu. I like it."

For sure, it's gonna be a challenge for NBA announcers to rattle off his name, but let's see what we're really dealing with.

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Makudonarudo

Here's an amusing Japanglish song by a Malaysian Chinese hip hop recording artist who is called Namewee:

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Honey Oligosaccharide Spice Chicken

Sign in the window at Green Pepper, a Korean restaurant at 2020 Murray Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA:

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Chinese nicknames for NBA players

Quite an amazing thread:

[To access the complete thread, click at the top of the tweet near the author's name.]

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Backformation of the day (with bonus trademark-law speculation)

EmbroidMe is the world's largest promotional products franchise. We help organizations create an impact through customized marketing solutions that bear a name, image, brand identity, logo or message. Our specialties are embroidery, garment printing, custom apparel, promotional products, screen printing and personalized gifts at more than 300 resource centers throughout the United States, Canada and Australia.

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Trump(et) king mushrooms

Yuanfei Wang, who sent in this photograph of a menu from a Chinese restaurant called Chef Jon's (Chú wáng 厨王) in East Hanover, New Jersey, refers to it as a rèdiǎn 热点 ("hot spot"):

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"Subway" in Chinese

Jeff DeMarco saw this sign in Chengdu:

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Mud season in Russia: Putin, Rasputin

A couple of years ago around this time I wrote about the "Schlump season" (3/21/15) at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.  Now, as Dartmouth is becoming enmired in the early spring mud, Pamela Kyle Crossley, who teaches there, told me that she thought of the Russian word for this season:  rasputitsa.  And that made me think of the Russian word for "way; path; pathway; route; track; road":  путь, which I suppose is cognate with "path".  Another form of the word is путин, which reminds me of "Putin" ("road" — I think [see below]) and "Rasputin" ("broken / obliterated road").

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Naming Nihonium

The naming of the recently discovered synthetic chemical element Nihonium offers an interesting opportunity to reflect upon the policies, practices, and principles of scientific terminology.  Nihonium has the atomic number 113.  It was first reported to have been created in 2003, but it did not have a formal name until November, 2016, when "nihonium" was made official.

"Nihonium" is an internationally recognized term, but what is it called in various languages having diverse phonological and scriptal characteristics?

French — Nihonium

German — Nihonium

Italian — Nihonio

Spanish — Nihonio

Vietnamese — Nihoni

Russian — Nikhoniĭ Нихоний

Japanese — Nihoniumu ニホニウム

Korean — Nihonyum 니호늄

Chinese — Nǐ 鉨

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