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Spoonerisms: Twisted Tongues and Mangled Words

Updated on June 6, 2010
Dr. William Archibald Spooner
Dr. William Archibald Spooner

What is a Spoonerism?

A spoonerism is “the accidental transposition of initial sounds or syllables of two words, usually with humorous results, as roaring pain for pouring rain.”  The word is derived from Dr. William Archebald Spooner (1844-1930), an apparently nervous reverend/teacher. While spoonerisms are commonly slips of a tangled tongue, they can be employed intentionally as a humorous play on words.

His most renowned spoonerism was supposedly at a church service, when the congregation overheard him say to a parishioner, “Mardon me, Padam, but this pie is occupewed—may I sew you to another sheet?”   It is very doubtful that Dr. Spooner said this, as many such spoonerisms were attributed to him which he insisted he did not say.

A spoonerism is a transposition and a form of malapropism, which is defined as an absurd or humorous misuse of a word, especially by confusion with one of similar sound ("A witness shall not bear falsies against thy neighbor." - Archie Bunker in All in the Family.)  Indeed, a malapropism does not have to be amusing or surprising, nor be based on a cliché, nor does it have to be intentional. There need be no play on words nor hint of deliberate pun.   In a Time magazine essay on slips of the tongue, Roger Rosenblatt says many malapropisms are "uninteresting," but that "spoonerisms are a different fettle of kitsch."

Who is Doctor Spooner?

Spocter Dooner...er...Doctor Spooner was a warden – comparable to a university or college president – of New College at Oxford University, who is credited with having made many such transpositions. He first arrived at New College as an undergraduate and remained for more than sixty years, serving as Fellow, Lecturer, Tutor, Dean, and finally Warden. His lecture topics included ancient history, divinity, and philosophy.

Spooner was an odd looking man, but was extremely well liked and respected. He was described as an albino, small, with a pink face, poor eyesight and a head too large for his body. His well-earned reputation was that of a genial, kindly, hospitable man.

curd tart, Zach_ManchesterK, http://www.flickr.com/photos/zach_manchester/2852190893/
curd tart, Zach_ManchesterK, http://www.flickr.com/photos/zach_manchester/2852190893/
"Para Sailin' Sarah Palin," makelessnoise,  http://www.flickr.com/photos/makelessnoise/2945024014/
"Para Sailin' Sarah Palin," makelessnoise, http://www.flickr.com/photos/makelessnoise/2945024014/

The History of Spoonerisms

Did the first English spoonerism date back to the days of King Arthur? Many people believe so, beginning when young Lancelot couldn't afford a horse and rode a St. Bernard instead. He supposedly was told, “I wouldn't send a knight out on a dog like this.”

In truth, Henry Peacham (the younger) is credited with documenting the first spoonerism in print in his 1622 manners book, The Complete Gentleman, when he recounted: “A melancholy gentleman, sitting one day at a table where I was, started up upon the sudden, and, meaning to say 'I must go buy a dagger,' by transposition of the letters, said: 'Sir, I must go dye a beggar.'"

Throughout 19th-Century England, creating puns and word transpositions was enjoyed as a lively game. Some humor historians propose that the fad began around 1854 following the publication of a series of novels by Cuthburt Bede (a pseudonym for Edward Bradley) about a student at Oxford who often spoke with accidental reversals, such as “poke a smipe” for “smoke a pipe.” Medical students in London particularly enjoyed the game, and the transpositions were known as “Medical Greek” or “Hospital Greek.”

Transpositional humor was also popular in the U.S., particularly in the West, and even Abraham Lincoln was reportedly fond of them. In one Lincoln manuscript, he begins, “He said he was riding bass-ackwards on a jass-ack through a patton-crotch.” What is not clear is whether Lincoln authored the piece or simply copied it.

Today, however, we call these transpositions “spoonerisms.” Dr. Spooner loathed his reputation as the premier utterer of the transpositions that bore his name, and continually denied having said them. Once when a group of students had gathered before his window to hear him speak, he refused, saying, "I know what you're here for. You want to hear one of those...things." In his later years, however, he softened to his reputation, even granting permission to publish some of them as attributable to him.

To that, we may all say, "Yank thou, Spoctor Dooner."

Archie Campbell & Betty Boop in Rindercella

Spoonerism Examples

Most of the spoonerisms attributed to the good doctor are apocryphal. The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations (3rd edition, 1979) lists only one substantiated spoonerism': “The weight of rages (rate of wages) will press hard upon the employer.” Interestingly, Spooner himself claims only having uttered one, and it is different than the Oxford quotation: In reference to the hymn The Conquering Kings, Spooner said “The Kinquering Congs.”

Most spoonerisms were probably never uttered by William Spooner himself, but rather made up by colleagues and students as a pastime. Whether he uttered them or not, they are fun to read. Below is a list of some spoonerisms attributed to Doctor Spooner.

"Three cheers for our queer old dean!" (dear old queen, referring to Queen Victoria)

"Is it kisstomary to cuss the bride?" (customary to kiss)

"The Lord is a shoving leopard." (a loving shepherd)

"A blushing crow." (crushing blow)

"A well-boiled icicle" (well-oiled bicycle)

"You were fighting a liar in the quadrangle." (lighting a fire)

"Is the bean dizzy?" (dean busy)

"Someone is occupewing my pie. Please sew me to another sheet." (occupying my pew...show me to another seat)

"You have hissed all my mystery lectures. You have tasted a whole worm. Please leave Oxford on the next town drain." (missed...history, wasted...term, down train)

“We all know what it is to have a half-warmed fish inside us.” (half-formed wish)

“When the boys come back from France, we'll have the hags flung out. (flags hung out)

Can you make a spoonerism out of this?  daphneanne, http://www.flickr.com/photos/48902212@N00/384060282/
Can you make a spoonerism out of this? daphneanne, http://www.flickr.com/photos/48902212@N00/384060282/

Colonel Stoopnagle

In the 1930s and 1940s, F. Chase Taylor – under his pseudonym of Colonel Stoopnagle – wrote many spoonerism fairy tales which appeared both in print and on his radio show. The original ones were printed in the Saturday Evening Post and he eventually published a collection of the stories in 1946 – a book which is now sadly out of print and much sought after. However, we are pleased to bring you a number of these stories on Fun-with-words.com, by Colonel Stoopnagle and other authors: Titles you can read here include:

Prinderella and the Since by Colonel Stoopnagle

Beeping Sleauty by Colonel Stoopnagle

Ali Theeva and the Forty Babs by Colonel Stoopnagle

The Pea Little Thrigs by Mark Fitzsimmons

Goldybear and the Three Locks

Sources

Donald Davidson, "A Nice Derangement of Epitaphs," in Philosophical Grounds of Rationality, ed. R. Grandy and R. Warner, 1986; The straightdope.com; grammar.about.com; and those as mentioned in the text.

Spoonerism Generator

You can generate your own spoonerisms with the help of this free spoonerism generator. The name itself is a spoonerism: Fablebish.

Comments

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    • Twilight Lawns profile image

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Do you know his (famous) last words?

      I think one of his best epigrams... but, please excuse me if you already know him, I think Saki (H. H. Monroe)was evem more of a wit.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
      Author

      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      Twilight: He may have, or at least wishes he had. He did, after all, say so many clever things.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      A million comments and all complementary. I have a lot of catching up to do. Great hub. I've always liked Spoonerisms since I first used one when I was seven... I can even remember it. (Don't worry, I'm not going to relate it it... too childish) Howzat? (Cricket term, not a Spoonerism)

      But, as i was reading through and I got to: 'I must go buy a dagger,' by transposition of the letters, said: 'Sir, I must go dye a beggar.'" it made me think, "Would that famous Irish pederast Oscar Wilde, on his deathbed, have said, " I must die a bugger"?"

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      rcrawford: Thanks for the comment. Yes, I am fascinated by this kind of thing!

    • rcrawford profile image

      rcrawford 7 years ago from NE Ohio

      Thoroughly enjoyed the article, being a big fan of word play. I heard "Prinderella and the Cince" many years ago and am pleased to discover there are more in the series. Thank you for the delightful read!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      Beth: Hey! Well, I think Spoonerisms are perfectly charming!

    • Beth100 profile image

      Beth100 7 years ago from Canada

      Nah, that's just me being me! :D

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      Beth: I'm glad, cause I look so good when you're smiling! Hey, that was a good Spoonerism. Have you been practicing?

    • Beth100 profile image

      Beth100 7 years ago from Canada

      These are great and as always, you have me smiling. I speak these all the time, but can't pen one down for the words look too odd and it goes against all my senses. So, I'll keep my words trwaight but my mind is milled with fessed and swisted words!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      AC: I don't know about "epic," but I had a lot of fun writing it. I'm not really up on my Winnie the Pooh (unless you count House at Pooh Corner by Loggins and Messina), but that seems like something the owl would do. Now that I think about it, that owl looks a lot like Spooner. I wonder....

      I owe you an email. Should be coming tonight. Been real busy.........

    • ACSutliff profile image

      ACSutliff 7 years ago

      There's something about your hubs that always makes me want to think of a citting womment. Since I'm wot nitty, I have to leave you all these soony spillerisms instead. On another note, you might find it interesting to know that this hub is so epic, I had to refresh it because the comments section didn't load correctly, and when I did, the mormat was all fessed up. I've never seen such a hangled mub, which is rather appropriate for a hub about wangled mords. I've been trying to leave a comment for a while now, and it's wust not jorking.

      Didn't the Owl in Pinny the Wooh always spoonangle his words? My favorite ones are: "Para Sailin' Sarah Palin," and "Someone is occupewing my pie. Please sew me to another sheet."

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      Hey, Epigramman, yes, those were good times. Thanks so much for the kind words. Surely, I don't deserve them. I appreciate your creative commentary...oh that it were true. Thanks!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 7 years ago

      ...it took me so long to scroll down to the bottom of this screen I forgot the witty comment that I was going to make!

      ..so what I did was put it on auto-scroll - I went out for a swim in the lake, came in and had a barbecue and here I am just back in time ..... well I can see why you have 8 million followers - women find you cute and adorable and men wish they had your good looks and charm .... speaking of which - your hubs are skillfully put together and artfully done - you a master of your own hub kingdom!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      Kelly: That's a good one and you shouldn't feel too embarrassed about it. A good Spoonerism is a great thing! Thanks for reading and the comment!

    • profile image

      Kelly 7 years ago

      LOL! I made a really embarrassing-but-funny spoonerism today! I was with my Mom and Dad and we were going to this local town here in California. (Handford, CA to be exact.) On the way, we passed by a Smart & Final. I pointed it out to them and accidentally called it "Fart & Sminal!" We all got a good laugh out of it and my Mom jokingly said to my Dad, "You want to go to Fart & Sminal?" LOL! I felt like a total dork!

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 7 years ago from South Africa

      Bucking frilliant, mate! Have linked it to high mub on se thubject!

      Pove and lease

      Tony

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      itakins: Sell waid! Thanks!

    • itakins profile image

      itakins 8 years ago from Irl

      Hate grub.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Yes, Janetta! Now when people laugh at your toungled tang, you can tell them it's a Spoonerism and you did it on purpose. Then you can tell them they are an idiot. I'm just sayin'. Thanks for the visit!

    • profile image

      Janetta 8 years ago

      wait...you mean there's an actual fancy schmancy word for that thing I do all the time!?! I'm always wipping flords! All this time I thought I was losing my mind but turns out I was just being clever! :D

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Leon: Very amusing stuff on your site. Thanks for the comment!

    • profile image

      Leon 8 years ago

      Very interesting, never knew it had a name/definition.

      I myself create words that make me smile. You might want to check them at http://www.fun-words.com/ (I don't sell or promote anything, this is strictly for fun).

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 8 years ago from Canada

      I am a big fan of the docotr, bless his tripping tongue. My best bud in college was blessed with an auntie who was an inveterate, natural spoonerizer. She once corpsed all the patrons at an apres ski party by asking the bartender for a "Horny Wallbanger". Thanks for the great hub.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      dianacharles: Thank you so much for the nice comment. Happy to have given you the chuckles. Thanks!

    • dianacharles profile image

      dianacharles 8 years ago from India

      Oh your hub had me chuckling away. I remember when I was in school and had a poem with spoonerisms, which all of us loved. This brought back nostalgic memories. Thank you.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Thanks for the comment, Janie. I appreciate your visit. I am a big fan of our language too!

    • JanieWrites profile image

      JanieWrites 8 years ago from Arizona

      Thanks for an excellent article on spoonerisms. I love our language and it is really fun when we can discover how it can get twisted around!

    • The Captain profile image

      The Captain 8 years ago from The Carribean

      Ok, mayhmong.

    • mayhmong profile image

      mayhmong 8 years ago from North Carolina

      Yo Christopher!

      Need an opinion on the Extreme hub makeover!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Very relevant, LondonGirl. Thanks for the visit!

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 8 years ago from London

      I was talking to my mother earlier, and realised that one family phrase we all use is relevant - "feak and weeble" instead of "weak and feeble"

    • cindyvine profile image

      Cindy Vine 8 years ago from Cape Town

      You amaze tee moo?

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      AE: Don't say that outloud! I thought we were gonna keep that a secret? You amaze me too.

    • AEvans profile image

      Julianna 8 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      uhhhuhhhh, *wink* you never cease to amaze me...:)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Hi, AE. Glad to entertain you for a minute! Captain? Where? Who?

    • AEvans profile image

      Julianna 8 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Oh my goodness , it took me 5 minutes to get down the page to comment, well I love spoonerisms and "Yank Thou Spoctor Dooner?" comical..... another enlightment from our wonderful Christoph AYE Captain...!!! Lololol:)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      CC: Glad you're feeling better. See you!

      Cindyvine. ha! That reminds me of the name song....Chris Chris, bo bis, banana fanana fo fiss...etc. My brother's name was Chuck. haha!

    • cindyvine profile image

      Cindy Vine 8 years ago from Cape Town

      This makes me think of a Trivial Pursuit question in the days when we used to play Trivial Pursuit. "Which Robin Hood character should never be spoonerised?" And the answer, which I remembered guessing at the time, is Friar Tuck!

    • profile image

      C. C. Riter 8 years ago

      Thanks Chris. Hope yer well. I'm feeling a lil better now. had to come check on ya. Lots of people here, great. hubbers are wonderful people, love 'em all, mostly haha

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      CC:  Thanks for Boming Cy.  Always sood to gee yo!

    • profile image

      C. C. Riter 8 years ago

      Twoonerisms: Spisted Mongues and Wangled Tords, gery rood vead

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Ag: Yes. I did mean "butter" be interesting. Thanks for pointing out my typo. And, uh...what bondage? Was that part of the movie? I was only 16 when I saw it so that was like.....uh...100 years ago.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chris are you sure you dont mean it "butter" be interesting? I did not think bondage was your "thing". Or was that bound as in "beaps and lounds".

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Yeah Ag. Spryte and I still have to work out the details of the butter thing, but it's bound to be interesting.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      BT: That's a GOOD one!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chris it looks like spryte may need a butter knife? Or should that be a spreader?

    • The Captain profile image

      The Captain 8 years ago from The Carribean

      Say, what's all this about oonerspisms? I spean moonerisms. Arrggghhh. I'm sying to tray spoonerisms. There. Aaarrrrrgggghhhh.

    • B.T. Evilpants profile image

      B.T. Evilpants 8 years ago from Hell, MI

      You guys are a couple of fart smellers, aren't ya?

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Hay I resemble that remark!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
      Author

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Ag, you're a huckin fumorous guy!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chris. no wucken forries!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      AG: Glad you iked lit. You have actually demonstrated it as a great way to include some great curse words in comments without actually doing it. Thanks, Ag!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chris. my old mate it's taken my a wucken feek to read this Hub, but you are such a pheasant plucker I just had to read at ill!

      Gloody Breat Hub.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Mr. Nice: Thanks for coming by and your comment. It's appreciated!

    • Mr Nice profile image

      Mr Nice 8 years ago from North America

      Hi christoph!

      I really like your writing style. Thanks for sharing your knowledge about spoonerism. I found it very interesting & amusing.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Ha,ha! Sorry I disappeared. Knock on the door.

      Yes, awfully close.

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      *whispers in Christoph's ear*

      He was awfully close when he said the word "but"...

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      I can understand how you wouldn't want to tell the Captain - after all, he IS a stranger - but you can tell me. We're the bestest ever friends in the whole wide world!

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      *presses lips together firmly and shakes head in a negative manner to indicate a firm resolve not to say anything further*

    • The Captain profile image

      The Captain 8 years ago from The Carribean

      ...consumable food product? ...part of this nutritional breakfast? ...sexual aide for Marlon Brando, but me as well?

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I was in my twenties when first introduced to this film by a over-educated film lover who thought it was one of the most erotic pieces of cinema ever created...

      I found it rather dull too....but I never forgot the line, "So....do you like butter?" It left no doubt what Marlon Brando planned to do with that butter. NOT that I'm saying that would be how YOU would use butter...but just that butter isn't simply a....oh never mind. I'm confused now.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      I'm not sure I get that butter reference. I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, you know. Are you saying I seemed cold, and now I'm hot, hot, hot?

      I used a fake idea to get into Last Tango way back yonder. BOR-RING!

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Hmph....and all this time I thought butter would never melt in your mouth and you've been more of a "Last Tango in Paris" kinda butter user.....

      I HAVE BEEN DECEIVED!!

      LOL :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Why, Spryte. I don't know what you're talking about. (wink)

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Oh no....I KNOW you weren't Christoph when you posted that last comment so don't you be trying to make me think I'm insane!!!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Hi spryte! (Christoph waves to Spryte.) Great to see you, as always and as I always say, but it's so true! Glad you could fit me in to your busy hubreading schedule. Your spoonerism jokes are hysterical! Thanks for adding them! What a hoot.

      If you have a chance to fit it in, read this hub. I don't know who wrote it.

      https://hubpages.com/literature/The-Captain-and-Ch...

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      *waves to Chris*

      Finally getting around to reading some hubs that were published recently...but I'm still plate to the arty.

      When I think of spoonerisms I think of jokes like...

      What's the difference between a group of intelligent pygmies and a woman's marathon team? One is a band of cunning runts.

      Or...what's the difference between mononucleosis and herpes? You get the first by snatching a kiss....

      Bad, I know...VERY bad...but they make me laugh cuz I'm rather sick that way.

      Okay...back to my list of hubs to read :P

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Glad to hear it, Shady Lady, that your trip was fab, I mean. Yes, normal life sucks. Welcome back just the same.

    • Shady Lady profile image

      Shady Lady 8 years ago from here and there

      It was fabulous!!! Sad to return to normal life, though. Good night!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Sleepy and on my way to dreamland. We are just ships passing in the night. I hope your trip went well and you had some fun! Glad to see you around!

    • Shady Lady profile image

      Shady Lady 8 years ago from here and there

      I am, indeed! How are you this evening...um...morning?

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Hey! Shady Lady! You're home!

    • Shady Lady profile image

      Shady Lady 8 years ago from here and there

      So now I know what to call it whenever anyone says anything about "The whole fam damily"!!! Thanks for this, Christoph!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Mr. Torpey: I had only thought about Google in terms of the sub-headings, which is why I gave the correct spellings in parenthesees. I hope the rest doesn't throw them off. But really, you can't do a spoonerism hub without doing some spoonerisms. Hmmm. I'd better get some links! Thanks for joining my fan club. I've never heard Stoopnagel, nor even heard OF him until I researched this. I wish I could hear him. Thanks for coming by and the comment.

    • William F. Torpey profile image

      William F Torpey 8 years ago from South Valley Stream, N.Y.

      Christoph, I hope you're on good terms with Google because when they read this hub and the comments, with all the Spoonerisms and Pig Latin, they're going to think it's all gibberish! Personally, I always enjoyed Dr. Spooner and his twisted tongue, and I enjoyed Stoopnagle, too, when he appeared on the Fred Allen Radio Show feature called "Allen's Alley." I was shocked to see I was not a fan of yours, so I've corrected that poste haste. Sorry I'm late to the party, but I've fallen way behind in my hub reading -- or should I say rub heading?

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 8 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      BT....is that what the kids are calling it these days? :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Laughing Mom: Yes. Teresa's is good, but from a man's perspective, a hard man is not good to find. Kind of scary, actually. Unless it's yourself which is a different matter.

      So, yes. From now on just say you did it on purpose and explain spoonerisms to them. They will think you are a genius! And you may call me RC or CR or WTF or anything you like!

      Jewels: An interesting concept. Kind of an actual, physical spoonerism. I don't think they have a clever name. Maybe we can name it Julesism?

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 8 years ago from Australia

      I can't recall spoonerizing, but I did put a hot pot of tea in the fridge once!

    • Laughing Mom profile image

      Laughing Mom 8 years ago

      I liked Teresa's spoonerism that she used in class.

      So, Christoph, when I screw up and say something like this, I can just pretend I am doing it on purpose? The problem is, I can apparently SAY them, but can't UNDERSTAND them. They make my brain hurt.

      These are all very funny. And I think I'll call GM 'MindyGwom' from now on. Does that make you 'RC'?

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
      Author

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Teresa: Hey, no problems. I wasn't going to say anything, but the U of N is developing a virus that is designed to infect the Internet and "spoonerize" everything! But you hidn't dear that mrom fe.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      It sounds like a veritable orgy of Tracying is going to be going on.

    • Teresa McGurk profile image

      Sheila 8 years ago from The Other Bangor

      I wasn't opining, complaining, nurping, or whinging -- I just thought it hilarious. You're correct, of course -- it's a really well-phrased definition, and now I feel silly at having mentioned it, but then I wondered if there were some special reason why perhaps Nebraska Department of Education was known for its Spoonerismal activity (say, around the spring eqinox or Mayday). And why the hell should you have to defend the choice? Accept my heartfelt apologies. And this beautiful bouquet of flowers. . . (dang, dropped them, sorry.)

    • B.T. Evilpants profile image

      B.T. Evilpants 8 years ago from Hell, MI

      That watch is wicked awesome! I wanna Tracy someone too!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      No reason.  I mean...it means what it means...no reason for an "authority" at all, but their definition thoroughly explained spoonerisms, whereas other sources, say Websters, didn't really explain what they were fully, I didn't think.  I agree it looks and sounds weird, but, what the hell.

      Compare Websters, "a transposition of usually initial sounds of two or more words," to Nebraska Department of Education, a spoonerism is “the accidental transposition of initial sounds or syllables of two words, usually with humorous results, as roaring pain for pouring rain.” 

      In short, I just like it better.

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 8 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Gang Tracy'd....gee, I dunno, sounds violent.

    • Teresa McGurk profile image

      Sheila 8 years ago from The Other Bangor

      I ask merely for information, buy why is the Nebraska dept. of Education an authority on Spoonerisms?

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Woo hoo! There's a whole group of people who want to Dick Tracy you!

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 8 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Yay! I haven't been Dick Tracy'd in a while!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
      Author

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Then we can Dick Tracy each other!

    • blondepoet profile image

      blondepoet 8 years ago from australia

      Me too.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      I want one!

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 8 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Psst!  Gwendymom and Christoph!  Go here -->  http://www.amazon.com/Fossil-Wrist-Smart-Direct-FX...

      Looks like we have to wait for stock.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Randy: The name does make it sound less "dorkey." And to find out Spooner was such an intelligent guy, that's pretty good dorkey company! Thanks for commenting!

      raiderfan: Well, nobody expects a Raiders fan to be able to spell so don't be too hard on yourself. Thanks for reading!

    • raiderfan profile image

      raiderfan 8 years ago from Arizona

      dude I thought I spelt bad

    • Randy Behavior profile image

      Randy Behavior 8 years ago from Near the Ocean

      My Dad does this ALL the time, I'll have to find out if he knows there is a name for it. Some how having a name makes it less dorkey. And no C.C. is not my Dad!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Blondepoet:  Somethings got my tongue, that's for sure.  Just can't seem to get any thoughts out of the ol' coconut.   And you can return my tongue at your earliest convenience.  RRrrrrrr.

      Blondepoet:  You like me twice!

      Peppermint:  That's great and it's an example of a perfect spoonerism!  Thanks for sharing it, and thanks for coming by and leaving your hysterical comment!

    • Peppermint Thrift profile image

      Peppermint Thrift 8 years ago

      I really liked this hub and learned a new term, "Spoonerisms." I remember when I was a kid and staying with a friend, her mother mentioned something about whether her father packed his "caving shit," instead of his shaving kit. I have never forgotten that and still giggle when reminded of that incident.

    • blondepoet profile image

      blondepoet 8 years ago from australia

      oops sorry Chris I hit the post comment box twice.

    • blondepoet profile image

      blondepoet 8 years ago from australia

      Haha Chris is that all you got to say. Cat got your tongue eh....

    • Christoph Reilly profile image
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      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      BP: Ha,ha,ha,ha,a,ha,ha,ah,ah,ah,a,ha,h,ah,a,h,ah,ah,ah

      CW: I see your point with already so much to learn. Thank you, CW, so nice to here from you. We should meet more often!