Tuesday, November 23, 2004


For over a decade, I've been fiddling about with a novel based on the concept of an alternate universe in which everything that happens on TV actually takes place. At times this little opus of mine has threatened to overtake my apartment as well as my life. Maybe, like Grady in Michael Chabon's "Wonder Boys", I'd be better off if the pages all flew off into the river.

I toyed with the idea of creating a fantasy species for this world but with sci-fi elements - a sort of "Elves from Outer Space" concept. And I may yet use them if I ever get around to future stories set in this new world.

And I wanted to create the semblance of a language for them (Yes, I was a Tolkien geek from way back!), but one which deliberately used the names of actors from the Real World for their words. I would have intentionally used names that best reflected an easy grasp of what the word meant in English. For instance, "Burr" would be the word used to denote cold weather or snow.

Here are just a few other examples:

Aykroyd - mechanical man; robot
Duhamel - a beast of burden from the elf/alien homeworld
Eubanx - a newly married couple
Radner - a charismatic leader
Wendt - verb for 'to go'
Zmed - bodily waste; fecal matter; insult. "You're full of zmed!"

"Pei tyrFalc, Pei tyrBrekk, Pei tyrTorq!" - A blessing or invocation to a trio of godlings/spirits/saints in the elf/alien religion.

I bring this up because in the last few weeks I've been watching 'The West Wing' and they've introduced a character played by Kristen Chenoweth. It looks like she'll be the new press secretary for the Bartlet administration.

I've never seen Ms. Chenoweth as an actress before. I went to see 'Wicked' back in March, but she was out that night. (I was mostly interested in seeing Idina Menzel and Joel Grey, so I was fine with that.) And somehow I missed her limited-run sitcom when it aired.

So this was my first exposure to her. And to her voice......

The elf/alien vocabulary has just been expanded.

Chenoweth - root canal.


"Be true to your teeth, and they won't be false to you."
Soupy Sales
'The Soupy Sales Show'

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