Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Least Useful Phrasebook of All Time

In a comment over on the Conlangs group on Facebook, I composed a sentence in ea-luna containing only vowels, which, coincidentally, was also composed entirely of  two-letter words: ai ui ia ue ea-au. This means "The snake wakes up again at noon."

I am not sure under what circumstances I would utter such a thing, but it has inspired me to go back and look for other sentences that could be added to The Least Useful Phrasebook of All Time. (That's not a real thing, but it should be.) So, here are some other things that might go into it:

I think I bought a pregnant mouse. (Something that turned into a sentence to translate on CONLANG, which was actually just a statement of fact to begin with.)
My canoe is very large. (Suggested by my son, Nick, and posted on the Kenakoliku forums when they were active.)
I'd love to help you, but just at the moment, I believe my pants are on fire. (Suggested by Adam Walker on Facebook.)
I don't live a practical life. (My son, Liam, as a response to the suggestion that his grandmother would be willing to buy him a practical gift.)
When you turn this key, the future turns into a chicken. (My daughter, Elaina,  circa 4 years old.)
Poetry is the path to unimaginable wealth and power. (Actually, no... But it sounds good, doesn't it?)

This is a work in progress. I am going to continue to collect odd sentences and to translate them into ea-luna, Nevashi, and whatever other conlang I start sketching up. Please, if you are reading this, feel free to make some suggestions.

And I'd love to see your translations.