But such misspoken pronouncements are active, vocal. Misheard words are passive, aural - like ''woolly'' and ''stress'' from the song ''Try a Little Tenderness''. Often-repeated anthems, prayers and pledges have produced often-repeated howlers like ''Gladly, the cross-eyed bear,'' ''deliver me to Penn Station'' and ''from the mountains to the fairy.
People who read know about the Heimlich maneuver. People who listen will easily grasp what a little boy named Brent Meldrum of Lynn, Mass. He used what he called the ''Time-Life remover.
What is a 'Spoonerism'?
Errors that are a result of misreading have close parallels with errors that come from mishearing. Linda Wertheimer, a political correspondent for National Public Radio, recalls this example. A newscaster, too young to remember those missing in action in Vietnam and the attempts of their relatives to find them, reported on Congressional hearings about ''the Mia families. Adam Clayton Powell 3d, a news executive at the radio station, quickly pointed out the mistake.
The incident reminded him of the time in the 's when, as a student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he had to inform the college radio station that the speaker that day was not Malcolm the 10th but Malcolm X. The danger of mishearing words on television has already been dramatized, on television, notably by Gilda Radner's bumbling ''Saturday Night Live'' character, Emily Litella.
She would call up, for instance, to assail the broadcasters for giving so much attention to ''endangered feces. The question remains: What name should be given to such odd, audible errors? Oddibles, perhaps.
Or better still, in the tradition of Mrs. Malaprop, Radnerisms. On first hearing, the computer term wysiwyg pronounced wizzy-wig sounds like a general gee-whiz description for computer wonders. It is reported that in conversation he referred to the well known two-wheeled vehicle as "a well-boiled icicle" and to a friend's new cottage as a "nosey little cook. She poke the broint of her pencil. You figure it out. It was a well-boiled icicle.
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Continue on the back of the. A well-boiled icicle well-oiled bicycle. You were fighting a liar in the quadrangle lighting a fire. Let us raise our glasses to the queer old dean! Apr 11, Although he was a well-respected scholar and reputedly a very intelligent town was on his well-boiled icicle that is, his well-oiled bicycle. What was intended. Spoonerism Well-oiled bicycle: Well-boiled icicle. Madam, will you make tea?
What is "icicle"
Have you, my brethren, ever nurtured in your bosom a half-warmed fish? A well- boiled icicle. You have hissed all my mystery lectures. You have tasted a whole. An utterance such as a well-boiled icicle. Since Spoonerisms are phonetic. Spooner talked of 'a well boiled icicle', 'a blushing crow' and 'a half-warmed fish'. Please leave Oxford on the next down train. Let us raise our glasses to the queer old dean! Someone is occupewing my pie, please sew me to another sheet.
As to spoonerisms unambiguously invented by others, they are legion. Here are a few:. Annual shower flow annual flower show Bad salad sad ballad Bass-ackwards ass-backwards Bat flattery flat battery Bedding wells wedding bells Belly jeans jelly beans Birthington's washday Washington's birthday Blushing crow crushing blow Bowel feast foul beast Britannia waives the rules Britannia rules the waves Bunny phone funny bone Cat flap flat cap Chewing the doors doing the chores Chipping the flannel flipping the channel Cop porn popcorn Crawls through the fax falls through the cracks Damp stealer stamp dealer Fight in your race right in your face Flock of bats block of flats Flutter by butterfly Full bottle in front of me full frontal lobotomy Guard hoeing hard going Go help me sod so help me God His nose was Roman; his grin pure cheek chin pure Greek Hiss and leer listen here Hypodemic nurdle hypodermic needle I'm shout of the hour I'm out of the shower.
Keys and parrots peas and carrots Know your blows blow your nose Lack of pies pack of lies Lead of spite speed of light Mad banners bad manners Mad bunny bad money Mean as custard keen as mustard Mend the sail send the mail My zips are lipped my lips are zipped Nasal hut hazelnut Nicking your pose picking your nose No tails toenails Pit nicking nitpicking Plaster man master plan Pleating and humming heating and plumbing Ready as a stock steady as a rock Rental deceptionist dental receptionist Roaring with pain pouring with rain Sale of two titties Tale of Two Cities.
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Sealing the hick healing the sick Shake a tower take a shower Sir Stifford Crapps Sir Stafford Cripps Soppy cheese choppy seas Soul of ballad bowl of salad Tease my ears ease my tears The rutting season for tea cosies the cutting season for tea-roses This is the pun fart this is the fun part Tons of soil sons of toil Too titty to be a preacher too pretty to be a teacher Trail snacks snail tracks Wave the sails save the whales.
Home Search Phrase Dictionary Spoonerisms. Browse phrases beginning with:. Spoonerisms What is a 'Spoonerism'? If you aren't familiar with spoonerisms this 'doctored' nursery rhyme should give you a better idea: Little Muss Miffet Tat on a siffet, Eating her words and kay.
What's the origin of the word 'Spoonerism'? The term 'spoonerism' was known colloquially in Oxford in his lifetime and was first written down in this piece from the London newspaper The Globe , February To one unacquainted with technical terms it sounds as if the speaker were guilty of a spoonerism. As far as can be ascertained, the only example of a spoonerism actually said by Spooner is: You will find as you grow older that the weight of rages will press harder and harder upon the employer.
More reliable are the accounts of ideas or words that demonstrate the occasional transpositions caused by his mild mental disorder: On one occasion he spilt salt on the tablecloth and poured claret on top of it. The Lord is a shoving leopard loving shepherd A well-boiled icicle well-oiled bicycle You were fighting a liar in the quadrangle lighting a fire Let us raise our glasses to the queer old dean!