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The [??] attribute

From:Roger Mills <romilly@...>
Date:Thursday, September 5, 2002, 20:16
    Steg Belsky wrote:
    On Thu, 5 Sep 2002 00:35:49 -0400 Roger Mills <romilly@...> writes:
    > These are, alas, all alive and well in Am.Engl.  The only one I find 
    > at all
    > amusing is _momento_; somday there will be a collection of photos on 
    > my
    > website, to be called "Precious Momentos".....don't fail to miss 
    > it!!
    I don't get it... what's amusing about the word "momento"?
    When it's a substitute for "memento". 
 There is also a sicky-sweet commercial series of drawings/statuettes (I forget
which) called "Precious Moments"-- lots of goopy mother/child scenes, children
and puppy-dogs etc. The 90s equivalent of the Keane paintings of sad-eyed
    (momento:  Span., Engl., a point in time
    memento: Lat. 'remember!', Engl. 'souvenir, keepsake')
    There's a nice overlap.... "This is a momento [=memento]  of my trip to Europe".
 That's the context I where I first heard it uttered publicly-- by Johnny
Carson no less, one night in the late 70s/early 80s-- it really jumped out at
me, because Mr. Carson was generally not one to murder the Engl. language. I
wondered at the time-- was it a slip of the tongue, or deliberately ironic?
    Apparently I'm a pedant-- I distinguish both words quite clearly in pronunciation.


Arthaey Angosii <arthaey@...>