tripping over one’s tongue

I ran into an ad for a Christian festival of some sort called “Lifest.” Now, my first reading of that word is as an odd sort of superlative – which I suppose is apt enough, but probably not what the organizers intended. I suspect, instead, that they’re running together “Life” and “Fest” – but spelling it “Lifest” puts a burden on anyone pronouncing it out loud, since it will most likely sound exactly like “Lie-fest” – a festival of lies – which is hardly what a Christian organization would want to be thought of, I’m guessing. Sure, you can pronounce both Fs to distinguish…but that would be a far likelier result if the word had been spelled “Life-Fest” – or even (and they’re getting a special dispensation in relation to my normal policy regarding intercapitalization) “LifeFest.”

A similar sort of pronunciation stumbling block seems to have escaped whoever came up with the name for the AmericInn chain of hotels. I get it: they’re combining “America” or possibly “American” with “Inn”…but try saying it out loud. Either it’s indistinguishable from “American,” and thereby loses the pun – or you have to push hard on the “Inn” and put a sort of stop after the “k” sound. Both possibilities (or the two combined) sound odd and unnatural. I suppose I could find out if and how they surmount this issue by calling their switchboard – but that would be too much like research, and that in turn would be too much like work.

And I am lazy.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “tripping over one’s tongue

  1. yellojkt

    I think I have stayed at an AmericInn once. I can’t decide whether they are a really nice Motel 6 or a crappy Hampton Inn. I wonder what uber-travel chain really owns them.

    And I assume LifeVest is a Christian rock version of the Warped Tour, but there’s no telling.

  2. Anonymous

    it will most likely sound exactly like “Lie-fest” – a festival of lies – which is hardly what a Christian organization would want to be thought of, I’m guessing.

    I don’t think ANY organization would want to be thought of in such a way.

    Well, maybe satanists; I don’t know what the story is with those guys.

  3. Editrix

    I would almost expect it to be run by the (horrifyingly puffy) Greg Kihn.

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