I was more nervous about giving the presentation than I should have been. I am not as out of practice at public speaking as you'd think, since I teach or give presentations at church all the time. Still, I wasn't sure I'd be able to throw off the motherhood mantle completely enough to avoid slipping into the tone of voice I use with my kids. Do you ever have those moments where you happen to not be with your children (imagine!), but something in your surroundings triggers a certain automatic reaction and you can't stop yourself from being a mom? Like maybe you're watching a movie, and a horse gallops into the picture and you say, out loud, in a very sweet, teaching-moment voice, "oooh, look at the horsie!!!!"
Yeah. I just didn't want anything like that to happen during my presentation.
And it turned out OK. The only thing that went wrong was that I came thiiiis close to being late. (I underestimated the time it would take to walk to class in high heels, which I was wearing to help me feel more professional and less like the person Magdalena had peed her pants on earlier that day while sitting on my lap.)
Also in class, as part of our study of morphology, we were talking about acronyms and how sometimes we pronounce the individual letters (NAACP) and sometimes we pronounce them as words (NASA, NAFTA, MADD). It got me thinking about my days at the BYU. While some buildings were called a proper name (the Wilk, the Testing Center, the library), a lot of the buildings on campus were known by their acronyms, and usually it worked out pretty well. You had the ASB, the JSB, the HRCB, the JKHB, etc., which were pronounced as their individual letters. But then there were gems that we pronounced as words even when the result was contrived and ridiculous:
Spencer W. Kimball Tower - SWKT - "swikkit"
Foreign Language Student Residence - FLSR - "flisser"
Harris Fine Arts Center - HFAC - "aychfack"
Martin Building - MARB - "marb"
Jesse Knight Humanities Building - JKHB - "juhkuh-hub" (OK, that was just Jeremy and me)
National Middle Eastern Language Resource Center - NMELRC - "enemy-lurk"
Museum of Art - MOA - "mowa" (at least I said it this way in my mind - anyone else?)
and the perennial acronym-name-pronunciation FAIL:
Smith Family Living Center - SFLC - "syphillis"
Let it be known that when they tore down the SFLC and built a new building, they named it the Joseph F. Smith Building, JFSB, an acronym that cannot be construed as an STD.
That's it for our linguistics digest this week. Did I miss any good BYU acronyms?