Friday, April 01, 2005

The World's correctors

It seems that Le Monde, France's most respected news source, (a la NY Times) provides its online readers an additional service, a blog that corrects what the paper gets wrong. In true French fashion this means roughly that Le Monde has its own language police. While this could seem dry and boring, it occasionally leads to the rather humorous inclusion of information that you hadn't really that of before - like the two definitions of prostate.

Si la prostate du prostate refuse de fonctionner, il peut toujours remplir sa mission diplomatique, mais pour la fonction corporelle, c'est Miction impossible.

[If the prostate of the prostate refuses to function, he can still fulfill his diplomatic mission, but as for the bodily function, it's miction (urination) impossible.]

These competing definitions remind me of the difficult lyrics to the popular hymn that we often mis-sang as children:

All hail the power of Jesus' Name,
Let angels prostrate fall,
Bring forth the Royal Diadem
And crown him LORD of all.

Diadem, itself, posed a problem to us as children. But prostrate was a real conundrum since all we knew of prostate was that certain uncles and grandfathers had to have surgery on theirs. Why the Angel's prostate should be falling, we had NO idea.


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