White Knight's Song Gotcha

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zo djan. cmene mi
and not
la djan. cmene mi

The latter would be giving your name a name - John, and would in effect be saying my name is called John.

The Gotcha title is of course an allusion to the Lewis Carroll anecdote in Through the Looking Glass illustrating this:

"Is it very long?" Alice asked, for she had heard a good deal of poetry that day.

"It's long," said the [White] Knight, "but it's very, very beautiful. Everybody that hears me sing it - either it brings the tears into their eyes, or else -"

"Or else what?" said Alice, for the Knight had made a sudden pause.

"Or else it doesn't, you know. The name of the song is called 'Haddock's Eyes'."

"Oh, that's the name of the song, is it?" Alice said, trying to feel interested.

"No, you don't understand," the Knight said, looking a little vexed. "That's what the name is called. The name really is 'The Aged Aged Man'."

"Then I ought to have said 'That's what the song is called?'" Alice corrected herself.

"No, you oughtn't: that's quite another thing! The song is called 'Ways and Means': but that's only what it's called, you know!"

"Well, what is the song, then?" said Alice, who was by this time completely bewildered.

"I was coming to that," the Knight said. "The song really is 'A-sitting on a Gate': and the tune's my own invention."


Martin Gardner's annotations point out that the claim beginning "The song really is" is illogical, because its object is merely another name. To be consistent, the White Knight should have actually sung the song at this point.

For a Lojban translation, see [1], with the inevitable flame from Ivan Derzhanski: [2] (echoing a similar flame by pc: [3]).