me lu ju'i lobypli li'u 17 moi

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                       Number 17 - January 1993
          Copyright 1993,  The Logical Language Group, Inc.
          2904 Beau Lane, Fairfax VA 22031 USA (703)385-0273
  Permission granted to copy, without charge to recipient, when for
                purpose of promotion of Loglan/Lojban.

                  Lojban International Conversation

                  New Lojban Writing Project Starts
                       DETAILS IN NEWS SECTION
     ju'i lobypli (JL) is the quarterly journal of The Logical
Language Group, Inc., known in these pages as la lojbangirz.  la
lojbangirz. is a non-profit organization formed for the purpose of
completing and spreading the logical human language "Lojban - A
Realization of Loglan" (commonly called "Lojban"), and informing the
community about logical languages in general.
     la lojbangirz. is a non-profit organization under Section
501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.  Your donations (not
contributions to your voluntary balance) are tax-deductible on U.S.
and most state income taxes.  Donors are notified at the end of each
year of their total deductible donations.
     For purposes of terminology, "Lojban" refers to a specific
version of a logical human language, the generic language and
associated research project having been called "Loglan" since its
invention by Dr. James Cooke Brown in 1954.  Statements referring to
"Loglan/Lojban" refer to both the generic language and to Lojban as a
specific instance of that language.  The Lojban version of Loglan was
created as an alternative because Dr. Brown and his organization
claims copyright on everything in his version, including each
individual word of the vocabulary.  The Lojban vocabulary and grammar
and all language definition materials, by contrast, are public domain.
Anyone may freely use Lojban for any purpose without permission or
royalty.  la lojbangirz. believes that such free usage is a necessary
condition for an engineered language like Loglan/Lojban to become a
true human language, and to succeed in the various goals that have
been proposed for its use.
     Press run for this issue of ju'i lobypli: 150.  We now have about
750 people receiving our publications, and 250 more awaiting textbook

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                        Contents of This Issue

     Important: Your mailing label indicates the last issue of your
subscription.  If that issue is JL17, we need to hear from you,
preferably with money for another year's subscription (US$28 North
America, US$35 elsewhere).  For overseas subscribers, this is the last
grace issue before our subscription policy takes effect for you - we
need to hear from you soon if you want to keep receiving JL; we will
be far more likely to support a subscription for an interested
overseas Lojbanist than a US Lojbanist, but we cannot do so unless you
request to keep receiving JL.
     This issue features a discussion of the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis,
including a fairly detailed explication of how it is understood and
interpreted by linguists by Bruce Nevin.  Also featured is a long
section on the new effort to start creating an original Lojban
literature.  We invite all Lojbanists to participate in defining this
project, which involves a group writing against a shared common
setting which is predesigned.  Several writings in both Lojban and
English appear in this issue to kick off the project.  Not all of the
writings are translated into English.
     Also included in this issue is a longer story translated by Ivan
Derzhanski from a Bulgarian original.  Extensive footnotes in
commentary are provided, discussing some of the stylistic issues in
translating, but also showing how you can get an understandable and
interesting story even if some of the details of your language use are
not understood as you intended.
     Technical discussions include debates on Lojban's suitability as
an intermediate language for machine translation, and a discussion of
types of ambiguity found in language, and how Lojban avoids them.
     As will usually be the case, this issue contains much material
derived from the Lojban List computer mailing list on the Internet.
Nearly all such material has been edited, revised, and corrected from
the original.
     Note the new network address below for the Planned Languages
Server if you wish to obtain electronic copies of our materials.

                          Table of Contents

Brief Glossary of Lojban Terms                                ---3
  Status of JL, Subscriptions                                 ---3
  Finances, Athelstan's Status, Bob and Nora's Adoption       ---4
  LogFest 92 - Activities, Business Meeting, Negotiations with TLI,
     Forthcoming Books, Baseline Status/Language Design, Next Year    
  Other News - DC Class, Bradford Group, First International
  Conversation, Phone Game, News from TLI                     ---7
Language Development Status - gismu, lujvo, Grammar, Morphology, rafsi
Structural Ambiguity in English and Lojban                    ---9
Lojban Fluency?                                              ---11
Lesson from Another Constructed Language                     ---13
A Lojban Pangram                                             ---13
An Alternative Orthography for Lojban                        ---14
Criticisms of Lojban as a Tool for Machine Translation       ---15
Discussions on the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis (several pieces, note
  especially:)                                               ---21
  Summary of Linguistic Attitudes on Sapir-Whorf, by Bruce Nevin---22
  Additional Sapir-Whorf Bibliography                        ---29

The Lojban Kalevala Project                                  ---30
  Veijo's Summary                                            ---31
  Condensed Papers - Collected Significant Writings on the Project    
  Text and comments elucidating further description of Scenario #2
  (Lojban and English texts)                                 ---46
le lojbo se ciska - Ivan's Translation le lisri be le serti, Nora's
  Operettina le ci cribe                                     ---52
Translations and Commentary for ckafybarja writings and le lojbo se
  ciska                                                      ---57
  Veijo's First Text (57), Nick's Text (58), Veijo's Second Text (60),
  Iain's First Text (61), Mark Shoulson's Text (62), Iain's Second
  Text (commentary only - 64), le lisri be le serti (65)

                       Computer Net Information
     Via Usenet/UUCP/Internet, you can send messages and text files
(including things for JL publication) to la lojbangirz./Bob at:       
              (This supersedes the prior
"snark" address.)
     You can also join the Lojban List mailing list (currently around
70 subscribers).  Send a single line message (automatically processed)
containing only:
"subscribe lojban yourfirstname yourlastname"  to:     listserv@cuvmb.
If you have problems needing human intervention, send to:   lojban-
Send traffic for the mailing list to:
     Please keep us informed if your network mailing address changes.
     Compuserve subscribers can also participate.  Precede any of the
above addresses with INTERNET:  and use your normal Compuserve mail
facility.  If you want to participate on Lojban List, you should be
prepared to read your mail at least every couple of days; otherwise
your mailbox fills up and you are dropped from the mailing-list.
FIDOnet subscribers can also participate, although the connection is
not especially robust.  Write to us for details if you don't know how
to access the Internet network.
     A good portion of our materials are available on-line from the
Planned Languages Server (PLS).  See JL16, or send the messages "help"
and "send lojban readme" to the server address:
This is a new address since JL16 was published.

  The following explicitly iden-      lujvo - compound words built
tifies people who are referred to   from rafsi;
by initials in JL.  Note that         le'avla - words borrowed from
'Athelstan' is that person's real   other languages;
name, used in his public life, and    brivla - Lojban predicate words,
is not a pseudonym.                 consisting of gismu, lujvo. and
  'pc' - Dr. John Parks-Clifford,     tanru - Lojban metaphors, the
Professor of Logic and Philosophy   most productive and creative
at the University of Missouri -     expression form of the language;
St. Louis and Vice-President of la    sumti - the arguments of a
lojbangirz.; he is usually          logical predicate;
addressed as 'pc' by the commu-       selbri - Lojban predicates which
nity.                               indicate a relation among one or
  'Bob', 'lojbab' - Bob             more sumti.  A selbri is most
LeChevalier - President of la loj-  often a brivla or tanru; formerly
bangirz., and editor of ju'i        called "kunbri" in error in some
lobypli and le lojbo karni.         of our publications;
  'Nora' - Nora LeChevalier -         bridi - Lojban predications, the
Secretary/Treasurer of la lojban-   basic grammatical structure of the
girz., Bob's wife, author of        language; a bridi expresses a
LogFlash.                           complete relationship: the selbri
  'JCB', 'Dr. Brown' - Dr. James    expresses the relation and the
Cooke Brown, inventor of the        sumti express the various things
language, and founder of the        being related;
Loglan project.                       selma'o - grammatical categories
  'The Institute', 'TLI' - The      of Lojban words; the basis of the
Loglan Institute, Inc., JCB's       unambiguous formal grammar of the
organization for spreading his      language.  Traditionally and
version of Loglan, which we call    erroneously called "lexeme" in the
'Institute Loglan'.                 Loglan community.  These
  'Loglan' - This refers to the     categories typically have a name
generic language or language        derived from one word in that
project, of which 'Lojban' is the   grammatical category; the name is
most successful version, and        all capitals, except that an
'Institute Loglan' another.         apostrophe is replaced by a small
'Loglan/Lojban' is used in          letter 'h'.
discussions about Lojban where we   
wish to make it particularly clear                 News
that the statement applies to the              Status of JL
generic language as well.           
  'PLS' - The Planned Languages       Well, I (Lojbab) seem to be late
Server, a no-charge computer-       again in getting ju'i lobypli out
network-accessed distribution       the door, though not quite as late
center for materials on Lojban      as last issue.  I do have a bit of
(and other artificial languages).   an excuse.  On very short notice,
See pg. 2 for email address.        I had to go to Russia to become a
                                    father (more on this later).  Now
  Brief Glossary of Lojban Terms    back, and somewhat settled down,
                                    I've gone back to work, and have
  Following are definitions of      taken steps to make it more likely
frequently used Lojban terms.       that JL will be able to come out
More complete explanations are in   on time in the future.  This issue
the Overview of Lojban.             is hopefully out the door around
  cmavo - Lojban structure words    the first of January.  I will be
  gismu - Lojban root words;        preparing JL18 starting on 5
currently 1342;                     March, with an intended publi-
  rafsi - short combining-forms     cation date of 1 April.  Issue #18
for the gismu;                      is already more than half done,

using material that would not fit   maybe those who try to write such
in this issue.                      texts.
  JL17 more Lojban text and         
commentary on the text than                   Subscriptions
previous issues; from now on, the   
portion of each issue devoted to      If you are receiving this, then
Lojban text will continue to grow.  probably you either have returned
Starting with this issue, I have    a subscription form, you have a
adopted a new editorial policy      large balance and were already
whereby other Lojbanists who have   receiving JL, or you have ordered
demonstrated competence in the      a package of Lojban materials that
language will be reviewing and      includes a sample issue, or you
editing Lojban text that is         are an overseas subscriber
submitted.  No longer will I        receiving your last grace issue.
(Lojbab) be the bottleneck in         If you have paid for a
getting Lojban text in print.       subscription, this is the first
Instead I will putting my time      issue under the subscription
into getting the Lojban books       policy, and the issue will have
published, and keeping JL coming    cost you either US$7 (US/Canada)
out consistently on time.           or US$8.75 (other countries).
  A result of this policy is that   Those receiving JL via Major in
published Lojban text may have      Australia are doing so by
varying degrees of quality.  All    arrangement with him at a price
text will have been verified by     that he is setting.
the Lojban parser to assure that      If you did not return a
it is grammatical.  However, we     subscription form and pay for a
all know that not all grammatical   subscription, then this issue is
text is easily understood (anyone   being charged to your voluntary
who has read legal documents or     balance at a higher price than for
tax forms can testify to this).     paid subscribers:  US$9 for US/-
Instead of me checking all texts    Canada and US$10 for other
for a consistent level of quality,  countries.  If you were a JL
published text will have been       subscriber and had enough balance
approved by two Lojbanists who      to pay for this issue at this
have demonstrated competence in     higher price, then you are
the written language.  This will    receiving it even though you
presumably mean that at least they  haven't returned the form.
understood the text.  These edi-      If you did return a form, but
tors, labelled by Nick Nicholas as  did not have enough money in your
"editors de jour", are described    balance to pay for a subscription,
in more detail in the ckafybarja    you are receiving this issue
papers below.                       anyway, in reward for having
  Because I won't be checking and   responded.  We hope that you will
preparing the text, there will no   eventually contribute to your
longer be detailed translations of  balance to offset the price.  If
the sort that I have prepared for   not, you will probably be switched
Lojban text in JLs prior to now,    to receiving le lojbo karni as of
unless the authors or one of the    issue #18.
editors prepares them.  We will be    Having received only $170 in
trying to include a list of any     donations earmarked for the
special vocabulary words, and will  support of those who cannot afford
include any translations that are   subscriptions, we have allocated
provided.                           some of that money to supporting a
  On the other hand, the increased  few nonpaying volunteers who have
volume of Lojban text, some of it   been particularly active.  Pri-
original writings, will hopefully   ority was given to people who have
convince more of you to join the    shown evidence of having tried to
ranks of those who have learned     learn Lojban, and to non-US
enough Lojban to try to read the    Lojbanists.  This money has been
texts without translations.  And    allocated in the form of prepaid

2-issue subscriptions.  We did not  sufficient to make our non-profit
have enough money to support sub-   status permanent.
scriptions for all who requested      We are now paying some $30 per
assistance.                         month to maintain Master Card/Visa
  As of the publication date, we    processing capability, though we
have 122 prepaid subscribers, and   are looking for a cheaper way to
another 13 are receiving this       offer this service.  Our Master
issue as a grace issue.  Since      Card/Visa fee to you is being
some people did not send money      raised to 10% pending our finding
with subscription forms, the        an alternative.  If finances get
number of subscribers will drop to  any worse and we have not found a
around 100 for JL18 (unless we      cheaper alternative, credit card
hear from those listed as expiring  ordering services will be dropped.
this issue), and seems likely to      With the successful ending of
stabilize at around that level      the legal battle with The Loglan
until books are published.  This    Institute, we are getting close to
is not enough to qualify for        paying off our legal bills, and
reduced postal rates, so our costs  expect to do so sometime in 1993.
are higher than they have been for  Since Lojbab and Jeff Prothero
recent issues.  However, US         have been donating funds to cover
recipients are getting their issue  those bills, the money has not
by first class mail and hence       come out of other la Lojbangirz.
probably far more quickly than      funds; thus paying the bill off
previous bulk mail issues.          won't really improve our financial
                                    situation (though we will have a
             Finances               good credit reference, at least).
                                    Legal costs have totalled over
  We lost money in 1992, as in      $12,000.
previous years, a net loss for the  
year of around $1300.  End-of-year          Athelstan's Status
cost savings, including delaying    
JL17 and LK17 until 1993, reduced     There has been a good deal of
this from an earlier deficit of     support and sympathy expressed
$3000.  We will need to have a      about Athelstan's accident.  Early
fund-raising drive in 1993 in       in December, he completed a course
order to have money to publish the  of recuperative therapy, and has
new Lojban books (as well as to     moved out from his parents' house,
support our continuing              is working part-time, and is
operations).                        starting to rebuild a life of his
  As of the end of December,        own.  This will take some
income for the year was $8646.54    considerable time, and Athelstan
and expenses were $9999.01.  This   will have to live a fairly
leaves about $2500 in the bank, of  structured life for a while to
which somewhat over $1000 will go   have his best chances for long-
for JL17 and LK17.  ($5500 of       term recovery.  He also continues
income was donated by Jeff          to need major dental work, since
Prothero and Lojbab, and went for   he has lost nearly all of his
legal fees.  Thus, actual project   teeth.
income and expenses were only a       Athelstan attended the LogFest
fraction of previous years',        in August of 1992, for a few
around $3100 and $4500,             hours, and participated in a
respectively.)                      couple activities, and is doing
  Our IRS 501(c)(3) provisional     some studying of the language on
status, authorizing us as a tax-    his own.  However, it is clear
free non-profit organization (and   that he will not be up to his pre-
making your donations tax-          accident skill with the language
deductible), is up for review as    for quite a while, and we do not
of the end of 1992.  We expect      expect him to resume his
that your support has been          leadership role in the community
                                    at any time soon.  Projects that

he was working on, including the    slowly - they do spontaneously use
Lojban mini-lesson, continue to be  "coi" and "co'o" to Lojban-
delayed indefinitely.               oriented guests, though).  Being
                                    forced to use a language in this
     Bob and Nora's Adoption        way has been a real education in
                                    language acquisition, and I have
  The biggest news out of Bob and   much more recognition of what
Nora's house has little to do with  things help in self-teaching a
Lojban except to help explain why   language.
so little is getting done.            This will no doubt improve the
  On extremely short notice (an     teaching quality of our materials
hour after they told me it might    when they come out.  I know that
take 6 months), the adoption        it has certainly changed my ideas
agency called in late August to     what needs to go into the
tell me that they had found a pair  textbook.  The proto-textbook that
of children for us to adopt from    we've been working on won't be
Russia, and that they wanted us to  affected, and indeed nothing I've
travel immediately.  All of         written for this draft of the
September was taken up with rushed  textbook will need significant
travel preparations for a trip      rewrite, but new sections to be
that seemed continually to be       written in the future will
scheduled for "next week some       incorporate the lessons in lan-
time".  These preparations were     guage learning that I've acquired
complicated by previously-sched-    the hard way.
uled surgery for Nora (who came       Lojban got a bit of a boost from
through quite fine and is fully     my trip:  Ivan Derzhanski did a
recovered, but the surgery meant    high quality translation of the
that she could not go to Russia).   Lojban brochure into Russian on
  Finally I left for Russia on      short notice (copies available on
October 2, returning on October 18  request); while in Russia, I was
with 2 beautiful and healthy        able to arrange to have it
children, brother and sister.       published in a journal in Russia,
Angela is 6 1/2 and Avgust is 5.    probably next autumn; the title is
They are energetic, intelligent,    something like the "Transactions
and there have been almost no       of the Society of Eastern and
problems in their adaptation.       Oriental Languages".  This will be
However, from late August until     the first academic publication
the kids started school in          about the Loglan project other
November, we got almost no Lojban   than book reviews, which don't re-
work done, hence the delayed        ally count (Scientific American is
appearance of ju'i lobypli.         considered insufficiently academic
  I've resumed work, but at a       to have it count in Loglan's
somewhat lower pace.  It took most  favor, and having an academic
of a month then to get caught up    publication record is important in
on mail and paperwork that had      seeking grants).  Special thanks
lagged during that time; hopefully  are given to my Russian linguist
the last of the backlogged orders   consultant, Mikhael Maron, of the
are going out in the mail with      Institute for Russian Language in
this issue.  I expect a lag of      Moscow.
some 3-4 months in the publishing     On Friday, October 16, I
of Lojban books, but John Cowan,    presented a 'seminar' on Lojban
Nick Nicholas and others have made  (basically a short talk with
tremendous efforts to keep the      question-answering) to about 20
ball rolling on book preparation.   people at Moscow State University
  These days, we mostly speak       Dept. of Philology and
Russian at home, despite the fact   Linguistics.  These included three
that neither Nora nor I speak it    professors, Mikhail Maron (who
nearly as well as we speak Lojban.  arranged the talk with department
The kids are learning English very  chairman Professor Polikarpov),
slowly (and Lojban even more        and several graduate students who

are studying theoretical            helped present Nora's operettina
linguistics and also taking a       "le ci cribe" (text in le lojbo
'practical English' class (Their    ciska below), for lojbo verba of
teacher saw this as a good          all ages.  As with the previous
opportunity to practice, but the    effort of this kind, Cinderelwood
students seemed genuinely           (1989), our low budget, low
interested).  A couple of students  practice, production group set a
and the professors as well,         new standard for lojbo draci, but
especially department chairman      aren't about to hit Broadway in
Polikarpov, seemed particularly     the near future.  The Lojbanic
interested, and I made arrange-     lyrics went well with the
ments to continue discussions by    collections of children's songs to
electronic mail.  There were many   which the playlet was set, and
regrets that I could not stay       some hasty but serious practice
longer in Moscow, arrange further   efforts before the presentation
discussions and visit               meant that the actors sang their
laboratories, but the purpose of    lines without stumbling.
the trip was primarily for the      Athelstan the critic gave it a
kids, and they most certainly had   thumbs up before departing; we'll
to come first in my planning.       be looking forward to his next
  I also had discussions with the   visit.
Academician leading Russia's          Another Saturday activity was
efforts in machine translation.     the discussion of the Lojban
There was some interest, but his    Kalevala project (see separate
group right now must put financial  article).  All in all, we tried to
concerns first - they have to find  keep Saturday a little bit light,
a way to commercialize (i.e.        knowing that Sunday's business
attract Western money), and there   meeting was likely to be long and
is little likelihood that we are    emotionally draining (as have all
going to be able to help in that.   of our annual business meetings).
                                    Thus, discussions stayed in
            LogFest 92              English, and ranged over a wide
                                    variety of topics related to the
  The second (and main) LogFest 92  Lojban effort.
took place the weekend of 14-17       Business meeting - The business
August 1992, and included the       meeting started at 9:30AM Sunday
annual meeting of la lojbangirz.    morning.  We had several key
16 people attended.  As usual,      people missing, as pc had business
Friday night was arrival night,     matters in Arizona to take care
with socializing and people coming  of, John Hodges' car broke down at
in the door until well after        the last minute, and Art Wieners
midnight.  Lojban-related activi-   was called back to work from
ties started on Saturday and        vacation for a crisis that made
continued through Monday.           him unavailable all weekend.
  On Saturday, the Lojban           However, all of these people had
community welcomed the return of    made their positions clear on the
Athelstan, who was able to attend   issues at hand, and the meeting
for a few hours with the            proceeded surprising well. The
assistance of his parents.  It      following summarizes the results
will be a while yet before          of the meeting:
Athelstan can resume the major        Organizational - Nick Nicholas
contributions to the Lojban effort  and Colin Fine were elected as the
that he was making before the       first non-US voting members of
accident, but having him show up    LLG.  We consider all of the
at LogFest was a real morale        Lojban community to be part of
booster for us, and probably also   LLG, but we have to have a clearly
for him.                            defined voting membership for le-
  Athelstan was able to stay and    gal purposes to manage
serve as 'critic' while the summer  organizational matters.  Also
'92 DC Lojban class and John Cowan  added were David Young, Sylvia

Rutiser, and David Twery.  Jeff     committed to Lojban, which is a
Taylor, who hasn't actively         much superior version of the
participated for the last couple    language, and we have a larger
of years, was dropped as a voting   group of people actually doing
member.  To make clear the nature   something with the language.  The
of voting membership, a resolution  membership showed extreme distrust
was passed explicitly stating on    towards TLI, voting to insist on
the record that voting members      two key preconditions to further
should consider themselves as       negotiations:
representing the community at-        a) Both organizations must sign
large, and not just themselves, in  a binding agreement preventing
matters that are decided.           legal action resulting from
  Several bylaw changes were made,  further negotiations; the members
all relating to procedures          want to be sure that TLI's offers
involved in holding members' and    to negotiate are bona fide and not
Board of Directors' meetings when   an attempt to set us up for a law-
we are so geographically dispersed  suit.
and several members cannot be         b) TLI must drop its 'trade
physically present for the meet-    secret' protection on all aspects
ing, especially the overseas        of its design for its version of
members; we do not want inability   the language.  LLG being committed
to attend LogFest to prevent        to the freedom of the Loglan
people from participating in the    community to freely use the
LLG decision-making, especially     language howsoever they choose,
such major technical contributors   the members felt that a 'secret'
as Nick and Colin.  These bylaw     grammar is anathema to the concept
changes are an evolving process,    of a large community of people
as we adapt to LLG's continuing     using a constructed language,
growth and international spread;    especially one intended for
every year, we seem to need a few   scientific research.  It is felt
more changes to meet new problems   that no real progress can be made
that have arisen.  Copies of the    on possible merger of the two
current LLG Bylaws are available    languages while TLI continued to
at cost to any member of the        keep theirs secret where neither
community.                          TLI nor LLG supporters could see
  Bob and Nora LeChevalier, John    the language details and evaluate
Cowan, and pc were re-elected to    them on their merits.
the LLG Board of Directors, and in    The voting membership seems open
a brief meeting of the Board after  to negotiations provided that TLI
the members' meeting, Bob was       demonstrated bona fide intent by
reelected President of LLG, pc as   meeting the preconditions.
Vice President, and Nora as         However, there is little sentiment
Secretary/Treasurer.                for significant change in Lojban
  Negotiations with TLI - The       as part of a merger of languages;
major political issue at the        we collectively believe that the
meeting was the determination of    Lojban design is far superior to
LLG policy towards The Loglan       anything the TLI designers might
Institute and JCB, now that the     have come up with in the past
legal battle over trademark status  couple of years since the last
of the name 'Loglan' is over.       good information about their
There have been some initial        version of the language.
efforts towards a negotiation         I proposed a strategy for
between the two groups, with both   remerger of the efforts starting
sides expressing an interest in     with the adoption of alternative
reuniting the effort behind a       ways of writing the two language
single version of the language.     versions so that they resemble
  The efforts haven't gone far,     each other in appearance, thus
since TLI wants LLG to disband and  making cosmetic appearance not an
merge into TLI behind its version   issue (as it appears to be for
of Loglan.  la lojbangirz. is       JCB) when the two languages are

essentially the same in the         move fast if they wish to have any
structures that determine how the   significant chance of influencing
language looks on paper.  John      the direction of a future combined
Cowan has proposed an alternate     effort.
orthography for Loglan/Lojban,        (Initial signs are not
allowing it to look in print very   optimistic for further reduction
much like TLI Loglan. (see          in hostilities.  TLI formed a
separate article).                  public mailing list similar to
  Following such an initial step,   Lojban List on the computer
each organization would study in    networks, but then apparently went
depth the two language versions     to considerable lengths to prevent
looking for similarities and        Lojbab from participating,
differences.  We would try to       eliminating the public nature of
convince TLI to adopt our changes   the list and virtually shutting it
into their language, and they       down - apparently for fear that
presumably would try to convince    some of their trade secrets will
us to adopt their design where we   get to me.)
differ.  Vocabulary lists are         Forthcoming Books - There was
likely to be the major              lengthy and emotional debate on
unresolvable issue under this       the continuing delays in getting
approach.  When the review is       the prototype and baseline books
completed, the decision of which    out.  Many Lojbanists are waiting
vocabulary list and which version   for the books, convinced either
of any unresolved differences to    that they cannot learn the lan-
go with would be voted on by the    guage without the books, or that
supporters of each version.  If     the language will change after
one version wins the vote in both   they've learned it, if they learn
organizations, then the language    the language before it is set down
versions have remerged.             in the books.  Our very
Otherwise, the two organizations    conservative baseline approach
go their separate ways, but with    does not satisfy these people;
languages presumably much closer    only the books will do.
together.                             The voting membership thus
  It is the collective belief of    forced John Cowan and me to more
the LLG membership that if no       strongly commit to getting the
merger takes place, that TLI will   books done as quickly as possible,
fade away eventually.  LLG members  and to avoid changes to the
expressed an unwillingness to       language definition except insofar
accept changes in Lojban that in    as glitches come to light during
any way detract from the current    book writing.  We expected to have
design - any evolution of Lojban    the proto-dictionary done before
would have to be a positive one,    the end of the year, with the
and we have no reason to believe    proto-textbook and introductory
that there are any differences be-  book following soon after.  (This
tween the two languages wherein     was before the kids came along,
changing Lojban to match TLI Log-   forcing a few more months delay).
lan would enhance the language.     John Cowan's papers will be assem-
  Faced with lengthy negotiations   bled into a reference grammar to
even if TLI meets our necessary     conclude the initial design
preconditions, the voting           documents.  We are trying to have
membership reiterated its intent    all 4 books done within a year,
that we publish the books defining  though John's book will be the
the Lojban design that are          slowest to be completed.
currently in preparation, noting      John believes that after these
that as each book is published it   books are completed, there will
will further cement us in a po-     likely be no further changes to
sition wherein we cannot accept     the language, and we will go
changes to the language in conces-  immediately into the long-term
sion to TLI.  Thus the ball is in   design-ending baseline.  I
TLI's court and they will have to   (Lojbab) continue to intend to

produce a real textbook and         that we missed in the place
dictionary (of which the first two  structure simply because we made a
books are indeed 'prototypes')      promise not to change.  There are
that will define the baseline, but  known weaknesses in other aspects
John and others doubt that this     of the Lojban design, but no major
will happen in a timely manner,     ones, and those known are not
and that the proto-books will be    considered open for change because
the ones used in the baseline.  I   of our baseline commitment to
have agreed that the bottom line    avoid change where possible.
on the book publication will be       The two gismu proposed in JL16,
how fast we can get them written,   vukro and slovo, were added to the
coupled with the finances of        gismu baseline, along with four
publishing, and not my goals to     new gismu for metric prefixes
produce more 'perfect' non-proto    reflecting their addition to the
versions of the books.  This, and   international metric standard.
a renewed commitment to stop          As part of the rafsi review in
fiddling with the language design,  progress, there emerged strong
mollified some very frustrated and  feeling that the gismu for
impatient Lojban supporters.        "daytime" as distinct from "day"
  The conclusion is that the        (= 24 hours) should have good
community very strongly wants the   rafsi, which was not possible
language to be done, and usable,    without severe tradeoffs given the
and does not care whether the       word (dinri) that resulted when
language is any closer to perfect   the word was generated last year
than it currently is.  I stand on   using the word-making algorithm.
record as recognizing that          As was done in the case of "less
sentiment of the community as       than", which was changed last year
expressed by the membership, that   from "ckamu" to "mleca" because of
has elected me to lead the effort.  the need for a good rafsi, the
  Baseline Status/Language Design   membership approved that this word
- The membership voted to update    be changed, disregarding the
the grammar baseline as of the      scoring algorithm if necessary.
proto-dictionary publication, to    This was considered acceptable
include changes approved by the     only because the word is a new one
technical committee that has been   added just last year and is
reviewing those changes (which are  neither in common use yet nor even
all considered relatively minor by  reflected in our published lists.
the members).  The rafsi and cmavo  To minimize relearning difficulty,
lists will also be baselined when   John Cowan and I opted to change
the book is published,              only a single letter, and the
incorporating the current reviews,  gismu for 'daytime' is now
and the intent is to baseline the   "donri", with rafsi "dor" and
morphology algorithm published in   "do'i".  The membership approved
JL16 after updating it for wording  this change.
errors found when we coded it up -    That was it for the members
John Cowan wants to have the        meeting.  We also had two
algorithm fully coded and verified  committee meetings, one to
before making a baseline            correlate the results of the rafsi
commitment, and we are still        review, and the other to allocate
working on this.  With all of       the $142 received last winter in
these baselines, the only           donations specifically to support
significant language feature that   active, non-paying Lojbanists who
will not be baselined are the       cannot afford to pay for
gismu place structures, although    materials.  The money was
it is believed that the simple      allocated toward 2-issue sub-
fact of putting those into the      scriptions for several people,
book will effectively baseline      with the hope that our finances
them as well (the difference to me  have improved after 2 issues and
is that I don't want to feel        more money is available to help
obligated to defend a stupidity     such people out at that point.

  John Cowan has put together a       DC Class - During the summer we
new parser based on the current     held a weekly class in Lojban here
set of proposed grammar changes,    in Fairfax.  Five students
which are expected to be approved,  participated, although two of
and it will hopefully be tested     them, Sylvia Rutiser and Tommy
thoroughly in coming weeks by some  Whitlock, were primarily
key people who write a lot of Loj-  freshening up their skills.  Of
ban text.                           the other three, two completed the
  Sunday night and Monday were      class and have continued actively
spent in more Lojbanic activities,  participating in Lojban weekly
a little conversation, and going    conversations.
over a writing effort by David        DC Weekly Group - After the
Twery.  By then everyone was        conclusion of the summer class,
exhausted, as another busy and      the DC conversation group resumed
successful Logfest came to an end.  weekly meetings, continuing even
  Next Year - We're not sure what   through Nora's recovery from
LogFest will be like in 1993,       surgery and Lojbab's trip to
given the patter of little feet     Russia.  Typically, activities
around here, and haven't set a      split 50/50 between conversation
date for LogFest 93.  We hope that  each session and discussions of
there'll be more in-language        texts written by the group members
activities, and at least one of     or on Lojban List.  When less
the books should be out by then.    experienced Lojbanists are
Given the addition to our family,   present, we assign one-on-one
we're hoping others coming to       "mentors" who aid them by coaching
LogFest will bring their families   them in what people are saying,
too.                                and helping them say what they
  There's a possibility for a       would like in the language.  Thus
weekend gathering in 1993 which     everyone gets to participate.
will be an all-Lojban affair, with    More recently, since Lojbab's
no English permitted.  This is an   return from Russia, some (rather
ambitious undertaking - the         light-hearted) efforts have been
language is ready for it though.    made to introduce our two kids to
The major factor will be the        Lojban; this is necessitated by
effect of our kids on our time.     their domination of everyone's
At the moment, Nora and my Lojban   attention until bedtime.  We
skills have deteriorated in favor   suspended meetings for the
of Russian.                         December holiday season, partly in
  But the critical factor in such   order to get the kids better
a weekend is vocabulary,            settled so that we can focus more
vocabulary, vocabulary.  The        on the language during weekly
summer Lojban class here covered    sessions, and partly to try to ar-
most of the grammar in seven 2-     range a more convenient schedule
hour sessions, but no one had       for participants.  After the first
nearly enough vocabulary command    of the year, weekly sessions will
to converse.  Hopefully with this   resume, probably on Monday or
weekend gathering as a goal, those  Tuesday evenings.  Lojbanists in
of the community who want to see    the DC area may contact Lojbab at
the language brought to life will   703-385-0273 if you would like to
get to work on their word lists     visit or start regular
and LogFlash, and try to be here    participation in this group - you
if we can put this weekend to-      need not have significant skill in
gether.  If we don't manage it in   the language to gain from par-
1993, we will surely try in 1994,   ticipation, but you should in that
when Nick Nicholas has threatened   case be planning some self-study
to visit from Australia.            at other times during the week.
                                      Bradford Group - Colin Fine has
            Other News              started a study group in Bradford,
                                    England, the first regularly meet-
                                    ing Lojban group outside of the

US.  I don't have many details on   spoken language on two continents.
numbers of participants, but the    There is no doubt in my mind that
group has produced a significant    the sralo accent on the other end
amount of Lojban text.              of the line was speaking quite
  First International Conversation  good Lojban, and at a fluency that
- I am pleased to report a major    would stand him well in our weekly
milestone in the Lojban project -   sessions in Washington DC.  (Nick
a most surprising one indeed at     has promised to visit us in 1994,
the time it happened.               when he completes his degree work
  One Monday evening in September,  in college.)
I received a telephone call.  I       After the shock slowly ebbed
had been studying Russian about 10  from my mind, I got enough
hours straight at the time I got    presence to suggest that this
this call.  And what do I hear on   would have worked better if the
the line but a collection of traji  call had been the following night,
cizra (superlatively strange)       when the weekly DC group met.  So
beeps and clicks and this unusual   I was told that I should prepare
bunch of words coming at me.  They  people for just such a call.
weren't Russian (and this itself      Here is Nick's recollection of
was baffling, because I'd already   the actual conversation, with
gotten 2 calls today from people    commentary:
with heavy Russian accents who
were offering me information and       Robert LeChevalier?    Yah.
advice related to my forthcoming      [Lojbab:  A good answer in all
trip, in response to a computer       three languages.]  .i mi'e
network posting).                     nitcion.  nikolas.  i mi fonxa
  It finally dawned on me that        tavla ra'i la australias.  mu'i
someone was talking Lojban at me.     lenu rinsa do pu lenu do cliva
Except for intermittent sentences     la rusko.
in an otherwise English                (The "cliva" is wrong,
conversation, no one has ever         obviously, and "ra'i" isn't very
spoken conversational Lojban to me    smart, but hey, I'd been walking
on the telephone except Nora, and     a lot :)
she was sitting next to me.            Thereupon Goodman LeChevalier
  Alas, I was attempting to           said "... a couple of words of
understand, and my Lojban totally     that sound vaguely familiar;
failed me, partly from shock, and     please repeat."  I did; this
partly from the fact that as I        time I was la nik. nikolas, ra'i
attempted to form Lojban              la sralo...
sentences, Russian words kept          Ladies and Gentlemen, Robert
creeping into them in my mind, and    has learnt his cmavo well:  his
this hodgepodge of jborusko           ".ua" was as good as any
(Lojbanic-Russian) just wouldn't      exclamation James Brown (let
be communicative; but I couldn't      alone James Cooke Brown) could
tune out the Russian.  Finally I      come up with :)  Duckcall-like,
asked the other end of the line to    in fact :)
repeat, and I made out the words       I started chuckling
nik. nikolas. and sralo, and I        ("hehehehe"), then quickly cor-
suddenly understood all the clicks    rected myself: ".u'i.u'i.u'i"
and beeps.  The first                  A good thing too that Bob's
international telephone call in       brain wouldn't click into Lojban
Lojban, and I was talking to Nick     mode, because, as I said to him
Nicholas in Australia.                (er... four times, the fourth in
  I'm afraid we never got more        English :), mi na djuno da poi
than a couple of sentences            mi bilga lenu cusku ke'a (once
exchanged - my brain just would       more, in writing that would be a
not click into Lojban mode.  But I    "ledu'u mi bilga lenu cusku
can testify that Lojban now has       dakau", but whatever).
people who have demonstrated           Stunned silence followed, then
conversational competence with the    a bit of small talk, then I

  talked to Nora, and it went a       a position of linguistic
  little bit like this:               expertise, but minus the actual
   coi    coi noras .i ?xu do         expertise... :)
  kanro [an IDIOT question in          Oh yeah, that's the other thing
  Lojban, but cut me slack            I said, when he mentioned the
  already, I'm new at speaking the    Russian on the mind:  "Ya ne
  damn language :) ]                  gavaryu pa-ruskii" :)
   .i mi kanro .i ?xu DO kanro      
  .i pe'i go'i                        The following night, Colin Fine
   [I really aspirated them         joined in the act, calling about
  apostrophes; I can't remember if  an hour before Nick made his
  Bob or Nora did.] .i mi jinvi     second call (which was
  lenu do xagmau mi lenu cusku [I   considerably more communicative
  think it was "cusku"; I remember  than the first one.  Thus in one
  at being surprised, not so much   night we had three continents
  at the lujvo, as at the fact      speaking Lojban.  Again,
  that it was followed immediately  international beeps and whistle
  by a pronoun, without a pre-      gummed up the conversation, but
  position.  Two years of written   Colin was quite understandable (if
  Lojban, and now I notice the      a bit briefer than Nick, who
  absence of "than"?!]      .i      seemed to be feeling rich to want
  .u'i ?xu go'i .i mi ruble go'i    to talk so long).  I have to say
  [I'm trying to be a smartass in   that Nick has a jump on Colin in
  Lojban, and it's not quite        fluency of speech, but nothing a
  working.  The word I was looking  little practice won't make up for,
  for was "ru'e".]                  and Colin does have some people
   Mind you, the bad acoustics and  local to him to practice with.
  my lack of familiarity with         [On aspiration of ': in some
  spoken Lojban meant that I had    words I heavily aspirate it, like
  to search a bit to determine      co'o, and other vowel pairs with
  what was being said (by Bob, at   matching vowels.  In others I
  least).  From what I remember     aspirate a bit less.  Nick
  though, I got through all right.  enunciates his vowels far more
   Lojbab, I believe, farewelled    clearly than most of us speaking
  me with a "co'o" (ah yes, he      the language.]
  does aspirate them heavily), and    I didn't feel so bad at not
  I responded with a "co'osai".  I  parsing Nick's sentences after he
  didn't mean by that that I was    confessed the mistakes he made.  I
  glad to be rid of you, honest!    am particularly bad at correcting
  :)                                others' errors in spoken Lojban,
   We'll have to have something to  especially at conversational
  talk about for me to be           speed.  This is one major failing
  convinced that we can converse    I have at teaching the language.
  intelligibly.  I can see why the  If you screw up, I don't
  differences between Washington    understand you, because I am
  and net Lojban exist though:      parsing in my head, translating to
  good phrasing just doesn't come   Lojbanized English and then
  to you spontaneously, much less   understanding.  The wrong cmavo,
  good bracketing.  I'm not going   or even one no one has used in
  to let this worry me about the    speech to me before (which Nick
  future of the language yet, mind  did several of), brings the parser
  you...                            in my head to a screeching halt,
   The kind of halting Lojban I     but Nick kept going.  (I have the
  was getting from Fairfax          same trouble with spoken Russian:
  reminded me of the Esperanto      I hear a word I don't recognize
  beginners I occasionally tutor.   right off, and I completely lose
  The kind of Lojban I was getting  the next 2 sentences trying to
  out of myself reminded me of the  figure it out.)
  aplomb with which I used to face    Colin Fine offered that any
  Esperanto when finding myself in  Lojbanist who wanted to try a call

was welcome to call him.  His         Preliminary discussions have led
telephone number is currently       to a "truce" in our disputes, with
(+044) 0274-503168.  Nick Nicholas  a possibility that there will be
noted that those with access to     future interest in negotiating an
the Internet can effectively        active reconciliation and remerger
practice conversational Lojban by   of our efforts.  Unfortunately, at
computer, using a software system   this time both sides remain far
called "IRC" (Internet Relay        apart on how such a reconciliation
Chat).  For those with such ac-     might be accomplished.
cess, it might be useful practice;    Details on la lojbangirz. policy
the speed of conversational typing  with regard to negotiations were
is far less than the speed of       discussed at LogFest and can be
talking, and not as prone to        found in the article on that
errors in hearing.  Contact us by   meeting.
e-mail at the address on page 2 if    We intend to continue to fairly
you are interested in IRC           report on what we hear from TLI,
'conversation and have access to    and hope that our non-hostile
that service on the networks.       demeanor will cause TLI's people
                                    to more actively seek
  Phone Game - The "phone game", a  reunification within the Loglan
computer network Lojban activity    community.
described last issue, made it                        
through three rounds, but then         Language Development Status
stalled on the fourth round - one
person who signed up dropped out                  gismu
after the game started, and sev-    
eral of the more experienced          Six gismu were added at LogFest,
people participating in previous    as described in the article on
rounds had other activities to      that meeting.  Other than these
occupy them in summer.  By the end  changes, there have been no new
of August, we decided to suspend    gismu proposals, and indeed, the
the game, since a replacement       draft set of revised place struc-
activity, the Lojban coffeehouse    tures has generated little
project described below, had        criticism.  Thus, we consider the
captured everyone's imaginations.   gismu list stable enough for book
We may start new rounds at some     publication.
future time when we get some new
people interested in                              lujvo
                                      Nick Nicholas has spent a lot of
  The Loglan Institute - After our  time in the last 6 months doing a
victory in the appeals court in     thorough review of some 2700 lujvo
LLG's trademark dispute with The    that have been used or proposed
Loglan Institute (see last issue),  for use in Lojban text.  He has
there remained the possibility      analyzed these by origin,
that TLI would continue the legal   indicated their quality (and occa-
battle.  We are happy to report     sionally proposed better
that this seems not to be the       replacements), and analyzed them
case, and the trademark issue is    to determine probable place
dead.  People may use the word      structures based on analysis and
"Loglan" freely in talking about    actual usage.  As a result, the
all aspects of our 37 year old      proto-dictionary will likely have
project, including Lojban, without  many more entries than we had
needing permission from TLI.        originally planned, since I intend
Indeed, it seems that both          to incorporate as much of Nick's
organizations will now be able to   work as possible.
turn away from the legal system as
a method of resolving our dis-                   Grammar
agreements over the course of the   
Loglan Project.

  The grammar is of course            Has anyone conducted an
baselined and frozen until we make    experiment to verify that word-
updates and republish it in the       boundaries are identifiable,
Lojban books.  Because we want the    even if you don't know what the
books to reflect the grammar after    words mean?  If I were to hear a
the books are done, we do our         recording of rapid spoken
writing based on that next revi-      Lojban, could I, equipped only
sion of the grammar.  Indeed, most    with the word segmentation
of the change proposal come out of    rules, identify all the word
the detailed analysis that John       boundaries?
Cowan does in writing his           
reference grammar essays.             Yes you could.  Ideally a
  There are now 27 minor changes    computer could.  If you cannot, it
planned for that revision, all but  is due to human limitations in
5 being extensions to the lan-      analysis, not to ambiguity in the
guage.  Because of the delays in    algorithm.  These limitations
publishing books and the fact that  might prove to be real, since
many active Lojbanists are          there are some obvious ways to
incorporating new features in       concoct utterances that will lead
their Lojban writings, JL18 will    a listener down a primrose path:
include a revised E-BNF and a com-
plete summary of all the changes    mi viska le prenu  is a valid
since the last baseline.  John      sentence  /miVISkalePREnu/
Cowan believes that only a couple   miviskaleprenus    is a name
more changes of even this minor     /miVISkalePREnus/
scale are likely prior to
baselining for book publication;    but you can't distinguish them
his estimates are reasonable,       till the end.
since he is the one who has           No we haven't tested the
proposed almost all of the ones in  algorithm in any rigorous or
this set of changes.  Of the        experimental sense.  There have
changes listed, only one was        been informal analyses, and of
considered by experienced           course we have people conversing
Lojbanists to be important.         who have no problems.
However, even that change was         The short form of the algorithm
easily taught to students last      is:
summer within one class session.
                                    1.  Pauses are word breaks.
                                    2.  Identify names by going
  Last issue, we printed the draft  backwards from 'consonant + pause'
Lojban formal morphology            to preceding "la" or "doi" or
algorithm.  Nora has been working   "lai" or word break/start of text.
to implement and text the
algorithm in software, and has      3.  Among remaining text, start
found several errors in the         from the left looking for
algorithm as printed in the issue.  consonant clusters which mean that
The problems are not with Lojban,   you are in a brivla (predicate
but rather are errors in the way    word).  Any number of leading CV
various steps are worded.  The      and CVV syllables fall off a
dictionary/reference book will      permissible initial cluster, each
have a version of the algorithm     forming separate cmavo.  In a
that passes Nora's software analy-  brivla, find the stressed
sis.  Meanwhile, we print a short   syllable, then, since that is
discussion that gives a simpler,    penultimate, take one syllable
plain-English rendition of the      more, ending in a vowel.
And Rosta asks:                                      

  The analysis of Lojban rafsi,      Structural Ambiguity in English
mentioned in the discussion of                  and Lojban
LogFest above, was not completed      by Dan Maxwell and John Cowan
until just before publication of    
this issue, primarily due to Bob's  [Dan is an Esperantist, linguist,
travels.  We intend to publish a    and programmed on the DLT machine
lengthy article and the revised     translation project.  John Cowan
list with JL18, so that all people  is an LLG leader, and responds to
can switch to the new baseline at   Dan with the indented notes.]
that time.                          
                                    It is obviously true that words
                                    which never change their form are
                                    easier to handle than ones which
                                    do change their form, but at the
                                    level of the sentence it is often
                                    the case that the forms of words
                                    are useful indicators of the
                                    relationships between the words.
                                    Here are some examples of
                                    structural ambiguity in English,
                                    some of which could be solved by
                                    more "signposts" on the words.
                                        Here are various Lojban
                                            translations, showing how
                                            Lojban resolves the
                                            ambiguities of the English
                                            examples.  Lojban words
                                            never change in form for
                                            grammatical purposes,
                                            although many root words
                                            have shortened forms for
                                            use in making compounds
                                            (the underlying roots can
                                            be uniquely reconstructed
                                            from the compound).
                                    1.  I saw the linguist with the
                                    binoculars ('with the binoculars'
                                    can be taken with either 'saw' or
                                    'linguist'.).  This problem comes
                                    up quite often, although context
                                    or the meanings of the words often
                                    serve to disambiguate for human
                                    beings but not for computers.
                                      1.1) mi viska le banskeju'o
                                           sepi'o le reldanvistci
                                           I see the language-science-
                                           knower using the two-far-
                                      1.2) mi viska le banskeju'o pe
                                           sepi'o le reldanvistci
                                           I see the language-science-
                                           knower which-is using the
                                        In 1.1, the prepositional
                                            phrase (tagged sumti, in

        Lojban jargon) is attached    2.1) le sonci cu to'ercitno
        to the entire predication.         nanmu ja ninmu
        In 1.2, the relative-              the soldiers are-anti-young
        phrase particle "pe" glues         men or women
        the prepositional phrase      
        to the preceding noun         2.2) le sonci cu ke to'ercitno
        phrase.  Of course, other          nanmu ke'e ja ninmu
        interpretations are                the soldiers (are-anti-
        possible, each with its            young men) or are-women
        Lojban expansion:             
                                      2.3) le sonci cu to'ercitno bo
  1.3) mi viska le banskeju'o joi          nanmu ja ninmu
       le reldanvistci                     the soldiers are-anti-
       I see the language-science-         young-men or are-women
       knower joined-with the two-    
       far-see-tool.                    Normally, logical connection
                                            binds more tightly than
    This denotes seeing the two             simple modification in
        objects jointly.                    Lojban, so 2.1 means "old
                                            (men or women)".  To
  1.4) mi viska le banskeju'o poi           change this rule, we may
       kansa le reldanvistci                use the explicit
       I see the language-science-          parenthesis words "ke" and
       knower who accompanies the           "ke'e" as in 2.2, or the
       two-far-see-tool.                    high-precedence infix
                                            marker "bo" as in 2.3.
    Here the linguist is "with"             Lojban often allows both
        the binoculars in the               forethought and
        sense of carrying them or           afterthought forms of
        being near them, not using          expression; parentheses
        them.                               are more general but
                                            require more preplanning
2.  Old men and women ('old' can            and may be more difficult
be taken with either 'men' or 'men          to use in colloquial
and women').  This is perhaps the           speech.
second most frequent type of        
structural ambiguity in languages   3.  Army demands change (Is
like English.  Signposts on the     'demands' a noun or a verb?).
words can solve some classes of     This problem comes up in all
this problem, i.e if the two nouns  languages in which words do not
are singular and the adjective      have different forms for different
when taken with both is plural.     parts of speech or a given marker
                                    like English 's' is ambiguous.
    Since Lojban is a predicate     
        language, I will recast         I would star this example as
        this example as a                   dubious English:  it is
        predication, which                  really "headlinese" and
        involves changing the               depends on omitting the
        "and" to an "or", thus:             article.  But even after
        "The soldiers are old men           revision to "The army
        or women."  Using "and"             demands change", it is
        would limit the soldiers            still ambiguous.  The
        to such individuals as are          Lojban versions are:
        both old men and women;       
        since no individual is        3.1) le jenmi cu cpedu lo
        both a man and a woman,            nunbinxo
        that translation would be          the army requests an event-
        incorrect.                         of-change
                                      3.2) le jenmi se cpedu cu binxo

       the army-type-of requested-  inflected relative pronouns might
       thing changes                be able to avoid this type, at
                                    least if the two nouns are not in
    "binxo" signifies a             the same class.
        transformative change, as   
        when ice changes to water.    6.1) le pixra be le tadni poi mi
        A mere change in the               nelci ke'a
        amount or intensity of a           the picture of (the student
        property, on the other             such-that I like him)
        hand, is "cenba".             
    "cpedu" is "A requests/demands    6.2) le pixra be le tadni be'o
        B" and "se cpedu" is "B is         poi mi nelci ke'a
        requested/demanded by A",          the (picture of the
        so "se cpedu" is needed in         student) such-that I like
        3.2 to refer to that which         it
        is requested rather than      
        the requester.                  Note that Lojban relative
                                            clauses are of the Hebrew
4.  Flying planes can be dangerous          type, with a marker at the
(Does 'flying' modify 'planes', or          beginning of the clause
is 'planes' the object of the               ("poi") and a pronoun
gerund 'flying'?).                          within the clause
                                            referring back to the
  4.1) lo vofli vinji ka'e ckape            relativized argument
       some flyer-type-of                   ("ke'a").
       airplanes can-be perilous        6.1 and 6.2 differ by the
                                            presence of the right-
  4.2) lenu vofli be lo vinji ka'e          bracket word "be'o".  An
       ckape                                omitted right-bracket word
       the event-of flying some             acts as if it appears as
       airplanes can-be perilous            far to the right as
                                            possible; thus 6.1 is
    Lojban's careful distinction            equivalent to:
        between concrete and ab-      
        stract arguments pays off     6.3) le pixra be le tadni poi mi
        here.                              nelci ke'a be'o
5.  The hunting of the tigers (Are      In both 6.2 and 6.3, the
the tigers the hunters or the               "be"..."be'o" construct
hunted?).                                   indicates the subordinated
                                            argument of the
  5.1) lenu le tirxu cu kalte               subordinated predication
       the event-of the tiger(s)            "is a picture of".  In
       hunting                              6.1/6.3, the argument is
                                            "the student such-that I
  5.2) lenu le tirxu cu se kalte            like him" whereas in 6.2,
       the event-of the tiger(s)            the argument is merely
       being hunted                         "the student" and the
                                            subordinated argument is
    These may be collapsed to               then cut off, leaving
        compounds:                          "such-that I like it" to
                                            modify the whole (top-
  5.3) le nuntirxykalte                     level) argument.
  5.4) le nuntirxyselkalte          Sentence 1 would not be ambiguous
                                    in Esperanto, since there happen
  6.  The picture of the student    to be two different prepositions
that I liked (Does the relative     ('kun' and 'per') in this case.
clause go with 'picture' or         But this general type of ambiguity
'student?')  Languages with         is found in Esperanto as well.

As I show above, the 'per'          and the form of the root never
interpretation is possible even if  changes.  So it would be more
"linguist" is taken to be the       accurate to say that Esperanto is
attachment point, giving something  an agglutinative language like
like "I see the linguist who is     Turkish or Japanese.  The
doing something with (using) the    essential difference between
binoculars".                        Esperanto and Glosa [ed.: another
Sentence 2 would indeed be          artificial language] is that in
ambiguous in Esperanto, at least    Esperanto many of the signposts
in the most usual translation.      are written as part of the same
Sentence 3 would definitely not be  word, whereas in Glosa they are
ambiguous, because different parts  always written as a separate word.
of speech are marked by different   But in both languages the
endings.  Sentence 4 would also     signposts have exactly one form.
not be ambiguous, because           
participles have different endings      Lojban function words may be
than nominalized verbs.  In 5, it           written free or compounded
depends on how careful the speaker          as a mere matter of
is being.  There is a tendency to           orthography.  Lojban con-
use the same preposition in both            tent words (predicates)
cases, but there is also a                  may be compounded and
commonly used alternative for the           taken apart again
subject reading.  The translation           unambiguously, but the
of 6 would be ambiguous in                  compounds are not
Esperanto as well.                          identified with their
                                            underlying word sequences,
    As shown above, none of these           although there is
        are ambiguous in Lojban,            naturally a close semantic
        and all of the Lojban               relationship.
        forms given above are nat-  
        ural unstrained forms.      Parsing algorithms started out
                                    with a simple L-R sequential
Inflection-based grammar developed  approach, because this is the way
in historical times; it is          language works, at its basic
probably an example of the way the  level.
human mind seeks complexity.  Any   I guess it's usually true that
language, including Esperanto,      programming languages operate
that developed prior to the  emer-  sequentially, but they also have
gence of Information Technology,    braces and so on to tell us what
is 'historical' in this  sense.     goes with what.
The formal grammar and agreement    
present in such pre-computer-era        Lojban has braces of various
languages has proved to be almost           sorts, but achieves nat-
impossible to process.                      uralness (unlike most
Esperanto, especially our modified          programming languages) by
version of it in DLT, was much              a systematic mechanism for
easier to parse than English, due           eliding right terminators
largely to the ways of avoiding             where no ambiguity (as
ambiguity in sentences like the             rigorously tested by a
ones mentioned above, among oth-            parsing algorithm) can
ers, even though English is                 result.
presumably less inflection-based    
than some consider Esperanto to     Function words in natural
be.  Actually, Esperanto is not     languages are not generally as
inflection-based in the sense that  specific as the devices used by
Latin, Russian, and German are.     programmers.  "that" (if you know
There are certain morphemes which   it's not the pronoun) tells us
are written as one word with the    that a new clause is beginning,
root, but these morphemes do not    but doesn't tell you what this
vary according to noun class, etc.  clause goes with or where it ends.

I think this kind of problem can    A friendly comment: this project
be found to varying degrees in any  [Lojban] ought also to be of
constructed language invented so    interest to linguists concerned
far.                                with universals.
    Except Lojban, where there is       It ought, oughtn't it?
        never any doubt.            
                                    It would be of interest if human
This is nevertheless not a serious  beings could learn to speak and
problem for speakers, because they  understand it fluently; it would
have context and meaning to help    be of even greater interest if
disambiguate (most of the time).    children could acquire it from
But if we are constructing          their parents.
languages which can be used by      
computers as well as humans, then       If it is true that natural
we have to make our signposts more          (and planned but natural-
explicit or we have to wait until           like, such as Esperanto)
computational linguists like me,            human languages are
the AI people who work on human             learnable only because
language, and our programmer col-           they are built upon a
leagues find ways to make                   hardwired structure (Uni-
computers understand meaning and            versal Grammar), then
context as well as humans do.               Lojban should not be
These are the real stumbling                learnable in the natural
blocks for computers much more              way, as it violates much
than complex declensions and                if not most of what is
conjugations.                               currently thought of as
                                            being universal.  I'm
    Agreed.  Lojban provides an             afraid that we won't get
        unambiguous syntax to               away with running an
        clear away questions of             experiment, though, as its
        syntax early, thus                  side effects may include a
        allowing the effort to be           few language-impaired
        spent on semantics, the             kids, if my expectations
        true heart of language.             are correct.
[In response to further comments    I dunno - consider A. N. Prior, a
that English and Esperanto can      guy who has written a lot on tense
also make disambiguations parallel  logic: he uses symbolic logic in
to the Lojban versions, it was      the Polish notation, which is sort
explained that the key point is     of like Japanese syntax backwards.
that not only are the Lojban        With a little practice, you can
versions unambiguous, but that      start thinking in it in a sense -
these are the simple and natural    you become "fluent" in it, as he
expressions to be used and that     is.  (You have to, to read his
furthermore there are NO versions   works.)
of these sentences in Lojban that   No natural language has a syntax
DO express the ambiguities of the   like an SOV language backwards (go
original sentences.]                ahead, somebody, pounce; note that
                                    it wouldn't be like the rare VOS
         Lojban Fluency?            type at all).  Yet you can learn
                                    to process it.  Ditto for master
  Ken Miner (a linguist at the      programers.  All that's lacking is
University of Kansas) made the      a spoken form...
following comment about Lojban on   
the computer news-group                 Certainly you can learn to
"sci.lang".  Lojbanist Ivan                 think in it (and you can
Derzhanski, also a linguist,                become fluent in it), but
responded [indented]:                       the kind of learning it
                                            takes is quite different,

        isn't it, from a child's    That's a very interesting datum.
        acquisition of his first    I wonder if anyone or any group
        language.  I'm not          became fluent in the earlier
        convinced that you could    Loglan?  When you consider that
        have learned symbolic       this project has been around since
        logic in your mother's      1955, and that some of its primary
        lap, using the same         goals sort of depend on this very
        miraculous language         thing...
        acquisition mechanism that  I'd like to hear more about this.
        you used to learn English   Does LeChevalier himself say he
        ("for although we've been   does not really qualify as fluent,
        talking since we were       or is that your judgment, and if
        three, / how anyone can is  the latter, roughly what criteria
        a big mystery").  Neither   for fluency were you applying?
        am I convinced that you     
        couldn't; I'm just          [I responded with the following:]
    And it just might be the case       Bruce is correct that no one
        that you must use the         is fluent in Lojban, and that I
        first few years of your       am the most fluent in the
        life to acquire some          language, but not really
        natural or natural-like       'fluent' in the sense that
        language, and if you          linguists use the term.
        don't, you'll never be          The state of the art improves
        able to learn any later             all of the time, of
        on.  I'm not sure that a            course.  I can state
        child whose only native             rather categorically that
        language is symbolic logic          there was no real fluency
        won't grow up as a live             in any previous version of
        computer, fluent in that            Loglan.  Indeed, Lojban is
        system, but unable to deal          the first version to
        with natural language.              really support the needs
        Again, I'm not sure of the          of conversation.  JCB
        opposite either.  Project           reports having had
        "Mowgli", anyone?                   conversation sessions back
                                            in the late 70s, but I've
Maybe some people have learned to           talked to participants in
speak Lojban fluently.  That alone          those 'conversations', and
would be interesting.  It certain-          I think heard some tapes
ly ought to be worth fooling                once or was told about
around with.                                them.  Basically a lot of
                                            dead silence with sounds
    So far all of those who can             of paper shuffling,
        generate and understand             because no one other than
        Lojban text have learnt it          JCB had enough vocabulary
        as a foreign language,              solid to even make a
        moreover, as an                     sentence without looking
        incarnation of predicate            up one or more words in a
        logic, to which all have            word list.  There was
        had a prior theoretic               'conversation' only that
        exposure.  That's not how           there was no resort to
        we learnt our respective            English.  The bulk of the
        first languages.                    sessions was groping, in
                                            Loglan, to find the right
[Bruce Gilson then noted that               words that someone could
Lojban is not actually spoken               understand.
fluently by anyone, even by             That was 15 years ago.
Lojbab.  Ken commented:]                In 1987, after only 6 months,
                                            my wife and I reached the
                                            same point with the then-

        budding Lojban version.             sation participants to the
        On our honeymoon, without           weekly group for fall
        word lists, and each of us          1992.
        knowing around 300 words        Basically the reason why there
        (but often not                      is no fluent Lojban speech
        overlapping), we were able          yet is two-fold:
        to 'converse' for about an      1) for almost no one is there
        hour with no word lists,            an opportunity to use the
        using repetition,                   language often enough to
        pointing, and paraphrase            gain fluency; only here in
        to get across the words we          DC have we gotten people
        didn't know.  It seemed             to even try to sustain
        very much like the process          conversation, much less do
        whereby one might learn a           so regularly.  My wife and
        language my total                   I probably could run our
        immersion.  But we tried            household in Lojban and
        it only once.                       quickly become fluent, but
    In 1989, 5 of us sustained              I have some specific
        conversation, with word             reasons for avoiding this
        lists, for about 4 hours.           - I don't want our usage,
        By that time I knew the             already rather dominating
        vocabulary well enough              in the community learning
        that I rarely used the              the language, to become a
        word list.  A couple of             de facto idiom; instead I
        months later, we had                want several people able
        several such sustained              to speak the language and
        conversations, while                write in it, thus devel-
        driving from Washington to          oping a more natural
        Boston, but with Nora and           idiom, even if it takes
        I both not using word               longer.  There is also the
        lists.  Early in 1991, we           emotional and mental drain
        started having weekly               to be considered - I'm al-
        conversation sessions in            ready putting most of my
        Lojban, typically 1-2               time into the language,
        hours, in which relatively          and I need a break once in
        little use of word lists            a while, at least until
        occurred by the 4 main              others have gotten up to
        participants.  However, we          the level where I am at.
        usually had at least one        2) because there has been
        less skilled person                 relatively little advanced
        present, and not using              usage, Lojban remains a
        word lists did not mean             pidgin.  We have about
        that people didn't have to          2000 solid vocabulary
        stop typically once or              words, which is enough to
        twice in each sentence to           converse and communicate,
        think of the word they              but not to converse
        wanted, and repeat things           fluently.  We have the
        once or twice for those             means to make any
        who missed something.               additional words for con-
        These conversations lasted          cepts that we need, but
        until one of the 4 was              making up words is not a
        injured in an auto                  fluent language activity.
        accident last Feb.,                 I am quite skilled at
        leaving us with only 3              coming up with communica-
        regulars, which we have             tive and productive usages
        found makes for too sparse          on the fly, but not at
        a conversation.  We have            fluent speeds.  Hence my
        just finished a new Lojban          working vocabulary is 2000
        class, which will add               words, though I probably
        another couple of conver-           have used perhaps 3000-

        4000 different words in my          speakers because there are
        Lojban speaking career.             no fluent speakers to
        These words are going to            learn from.  Those of us
        have to be recorded in              bootstrapping the language
        dictionaries, and in                are the examples for
        written usages for the              everyone else, but who do
        mass of Lojbanists (most            we learn from.  In writing
        of whom are not local to            we can learn from each
        me) to learn about.  In             other, which is why Lojban
        addition, I suspect that            writing has progressed far
        vocabulary level needs to           beyond speech in skill
        reach more like 5000-               level, but until we have a
        10000, with most of the             cluster of people in one
        words on spontaneous re-            location who are willing
        call, before fluent                 to make the commitment to
        conversation will be                use Lojban at a much
        sustainable.  Given the             higher level than 1 hour a
        great amount of technical           week, we won't achieve
        and specialized vocabulary          fluent speech.
        that pervades most              We are in the process of
        conversation that I                 publishing the first books
        experience (and which is            about Lojban, and when
        necessary to keep a                 those are available, I
        conversation going for              suspect that there will be
        hours - you can only say            people willing to make
        so much about the weather           that commitment.  So this
        today zo'o), I could not            situation may change
        comfortably talk for hours          within the next year or
        without having such a               two.  Our experience 5
        vocabulary on tap.                  years ago on our honeymoon
        English speakers                    has convinced me that
        vocabularies are estimated          there is no reason that
        as being much larger than           Lojban itself is
        this, of course, but                insufficient or incapable
        Lojban gains some                   of being spoken fluently.
        considerable efficiency         (By the way, to avoid the
        from its predicate                  inevitable comparison, I
        structure wherein words             should note that Esperanto
        serve as nouns, verbs, and          also did not catch on
        adjectives                          until there was a book to
        interchangeably.                    learn from.  It grew much
    The obvious question is "why            faster because its
        is it taking so long?"              vocabulary is so strongly
        The answer is that it               derivative of the European
        hasn't been a high enough           word stock, whereas
        priority for very many              Loglan/Lojban by intent
        people.  Secondary reasons          must not be so derivative.
        for this include the                Even so, I have heard that
        geographical dispersion of          the watershed moment when
        Lojbanists (our best                Esperanto really
        writers are Nick Nicholas           'succeeded' did not come
        in Australia, Ivan                  until something like 1904,
        Derzhanski in Scotland,             when people at their
        Iain Alexander and Colin            international conference
        Fine in England, Veijo              discovered to both
        Vilva in Finland, John              pleasure and surprise that
        Cowan in New York, and              the language was finally
        myself in Washington DC).           well enough known to such
    But another key point is that           a degree that the meeting
        there are no fluent                 could be conducted in

        spontaneous and fairly          Exactly, and even worse, given
        fluent Esperanto.  That             that I myself have been
        was 17 years after                  monolingual English
        Zamenhof's book, and I've           speaker (whereas Zamenhof
        heard that Esperanto was            and his associates were
        in formation for at least           predominantly polyglots to
        8 years before the book             start with), I recognize
        was published.  While               that relying on my usage
        Lojban has recaptured all           to set the patterns is
        of the research benefits            particularly risky for
        of the earlier Loglan               cultural neutrality.
        developments, we basically      In written usage, we seem to
        started the language                be meeting your goals.
        definition process from             With the major people
        scratch in 1987.  I don't           writing in the language
        think we will be waiting            including a Greek-
        17 years for spontaneous            Australian, a Finn, and a
        fluent speech.)                     Bulgarian polyglot with
                                            professional linguistics
[Ken responded, leading to the              training, our stylistics
following exchange:]                        is developing somewhat
                                            independent of myself.
  ... I ... probably will have              Further, by recognizing
further reaction, but for the               the importance of cultural
moment:  while comparisons with             neutrality, I am very
Esperanto (which I have spoken              forward about indicating
fluently since my youth, but not            which of my usages are
natively) are indeed inevitable, a          tentative, and in
better comparison would be with             screening myself for
VolapЃk, Esperanto's predecessor,           cultural bias.  "malglico"
which while naturalistic was less           (damnably-English-like)
so than Esperanto, having I think           was one of the first
more case endings than Finn-ish             compounds to gain
yet allowing Germanic-type                  widespread use, and I'm
compounding.                                proud of having coined and
This whole area of how new                  pushed it.
languages "get going" is            
fascinating.  It relates to modern   Lesson from Another Constructed
Israeli Hebrew as well.                          Language
Re what you said about not wanting  
a small group to fix usage too      [The following, translated from
soon:  that seems to be what        Esperanto by Don Harlow from the
happened to Esperanto, maybe on a   referenced article, indicates the
larger scale.  I don't know         dangers of uncontrolled change
whether you're an Esperantist but   and/or change in a constructed
I and others have often been        language controlled by "people who
impressed by the extent to which    were linguistically very undisci-
Esperanto became "a real European   plined".  Novial was a major
language" when it had the           artificial language invented by
potential, and the theoretical      one of the most noted linguists of
underpinnings, to develop along     his time, and for a while
completely different lines.  I see  attracted a significant following
that as the problem with Lojban.    (it basically supplanted Ido, the
You need speakers, early in the     major splinter from Esperanto),
game, with diverse linguistic       but it apparently died from
backgrounds.  Otherwise it's going  uncontrolled change.]
to develop along the lines of       
"standard average European."        The following comes from
                                    Carlevaro, Tazio:  "Mondlingvaj
                                    akademioj", in Haupenthal,

Reinhard (ed.):  "Li kaj ni",       tional.  "." may only be placed at
Antwerp-La Laguna:  Stafeto, 1985,  a required pause, though.)
pp. 389-390:                          - It must be a grammatical
    The well-known Danish linguist    - No fair using zoi (non-Lojban
  Jespersen, who had already        quotes) or lo'u/le'u
  collaborated in the creation of   (ungrammatical text quotes) to
  Ido, in 1928 proposed a new neo-  throw in nonsense to get tough
  Latinoid language project Novial  letters.
  (Nov International Auxiliari        - No experimental or unknown
  Lingue).  In 1929 a handful of    cmavo, of course.
  ex-Idists joined it, along with
  the otherwise well known Ido
  magazine Mondo.  In 1934
  Jespersen decided to radically
  reform the language to bring it
  nearer to Occidental.  But it
  became obvious that the
  Novialists were people who were
  linguistically very
  undisciplined, and for this
  reason, and perhaps also because
  Jespersen didn't have the time
  to get very deeply occupied in
  his project, the Lingual Jurie
  del Novalistes was founded
  (1937) and proposed new
  improvements and changes.  This
  did not, however, reduce the
  linguistic chaos in the movement
  itself, because this committee's
  decisions were not mandatory but
  only indicative.  Novial,
  together with its language
  committee, disappeared during
  the second world war.
         A Lojban Pangram

[Mark Shoulson issued a challenge
on Lojban list for a Lojban
'pangram', a sentence as short as
possible that contains all of the
letters of the Lojban alphabet.
Examples from English include "The
quick brown fox slyly jumped over
the lazy dog." and "Pack my box
with five dozen liquor jugs."
Mark wrote:]

  Here comes the quest for the
Lojban pangram.  Guidelines should
  - No cmene or le'avla.  Cop-out.
  - All Lojban symbols except ","
(which only happens in cmene and
le'avla) must appear (not counting
such optionals as ";" or ":", but
counting ".", even though it's op-

Desiderata:                         (They're) antarctic gloves of two
  - It should be a bridi (a         Malay-relative living things.
complete Lojban sentence), not      
just a bare sumti or a string of      To add the missing symbols:
exclamations.                         "." uses up one or two vowels -
  - It should not have sumti in     either [selma'o] I or UI
undefined places, if possible         "'" uses up two vowels.  We can
(e.g. nothing in the x6 place of    combine these in UI, or in a cmavo
"prenu" or whatnot, even though     or lujvo.
that parses).                         "y" requires a lujvo (if we are
  - It should have some sort of     not using letterals or hes-
comprehensible meaning, though it   itation).
may be nonsense (i.e. the meaning   
needn't be reasonable, but it         1) Minimising use of lujvo:
should be capable of being            Two strategies suggest
understood in some fashion).        themselves for this goal.  Either
  - It should be as short as        use a (single) consonant-rich
possible.                           lujvo of the form "CVCyCCV" and
  - It shouldn't use letterals      use UI for the other two.
just to get letters in cheaply.     Inserting (a single instance of
In fact, avoid letterals if you     the form) ".V'V CVCyCCV" covers
can, except maybe to get "y".       4C, 4V at a cost of 11 characters
  - lujvo should be used            altogether, or use a (single)
sparingly, and if used, should      CVCyCV'V-form lujvo and a V cmavo:
make sense somehow.  You can get    ".V CVCyCV'V" covers 3C, 4V at a
"y" using hesitation or letterals,  cost of 10 characters altogether.
but don't turn down an otherwise    The latter approach is shorter,
good sentence because of a lujvo.   but since the total number of dif-
                                    ferent consonants is 2 mod 3,
  The desiderata are roughly in     would require two cmavo, giving a
order of importance.  I'd imagine   total length of 34, against 33 for
it's a little easier to find a      the first strategy.  Therefore the
pangram in Lojban than in English,  minimal solution with only one
although finding a good one (where  (two-element) lujvo is of form
"good" is defined something like    ".V'V CVCyCCV CV gismu gismu gismu
above) isn't easy in almost any     gismu" (with the order of these
language.                           elements completely free)
  Have fun with it!                 
                                      .e'u zadyfra pa baxso ckini
[Colin Fine responded with the           jmive gluta (33 characters)
following admirably-complete          Let's react more to a Malay-
analysis:]                               related living thing's glove!
  Assuming Mark's rules, but          2) Allowing free use of lujvo
avoiding letterals or hesitation:   CVC rafsi have the highest
  There are 17 consonants and only  consonant/vowel ratio possible in
5 vowels.  All brivla are more      the language, so the answer is
consonant-rich than all cmavo.  So  clearly going to involve one or
use as many brivla as possible.     more long lujvo with lots of
  Ignoring, ".'y", the best ratio   CVC's.  An obvious strategy is
you can get in a sentence with      (CVC)n-CV'V = 2n+1 consonants, n+2
gismu only is 3 consonants/2        vowels,   Thus with ".i" at the
vowels; 17 consonants requires 6    beginning (we can't use any other
words, for a total length of 30.    V word unless we have some sumti),
Using 2 CV cmavo instead of one     and one juncture requiring "y", we
gismu improves this to 29.          get:
dzipo gluta fe re baxso ckini         .i CVCCVCCVCCVCCVCCVCCVCCVCyCV'V
jmive                                    (31 chars.)

  .i cabjagnixtulroskazdempafyva'i  minimum of relearning to be able
  The currently-resulting girl's-   to start participating in the
     leg prose has the quality of   Lojban community, should such an
     dense father value" (or        orthography option be part of the
     something)                     resolution of our differences.
                                      The alternate orthography is
  Once you've got the structure,    thus a mapping from Lojban back to
they're easy to concoct, and I've   the original orthography of
no doubt somebody can come up with  Loglan, with a couple of things
better ones.                        that JCB added after the split
                                    like the doubled letters for
[The challenge to the community is  syllabic consonants.  Thus, JCB
to propose some better pangrams     used "ao" for the diphthong that
using any of these forms.  I know   we write in Lojban as "au".  JCB
of at least one Lojban poet         doesn't use apostrophes in non-
(Michael Helsem) who will probably  diphthong VV pairs.  (He has never
have a field day with this kind of  addressed the problem that we
challenge.  We will print the best  resolved through the devoiced
submittals in a future issue of     glide).  He uses 'h', but 'x' as a
JL.]                                distinct phoneme is found only in
                                    names, whereas historically,
  An Alternative Orthography for    Loglan considered our 'x' to be an
              Lojban                allophone of 'h'.]
          by John Cowan             
                                      NOTE:  This document is not an
  [Editor's note:  This is an       official policy of the Logical
optional alternative to the cur-    Language Group and has not been
rent Lojban writing system, not a   endorsed by the LLG or its Board
change or replacement.  In short,   (to which, for my sins, I belong).
this proposal is a way to write     Still less is it endorsed by any
Lojban so that it looks more like   other non-profit organization con-
any other version of Loglan, and    cerned with the development of
hence be more palatable to JCB.     logical languages.
  I don't think that any Lojbanist    This note proposes an
considers the alternative more      alternative orthography for Loj-
desirable than what we do now - we  ban.  The orthography here
made the current Lojban             described is not intended to re-
orthography in order to better      place the existing standard
reflect the way people will learn   orthography.  Nothing in this note
and speak the language (although    is intended as a proposal for
the use of doubled consonants for   change either in Lojban's
syllabics might actually be an      orthography or its phonology.  The
improvement if used throughout the  purpose of the alternative
language - TLI Loglan uses this     orthography is to provide a way of
convention only for syllabic        writing Lojban which visually
consonants in borrowings, and not   resembles the conventions used by
in lujvo.)                          earlier versions of the Loglan
  However, having an orthography    language, including the version
that looks more 'normal' to JCB is  proposed in the 4th edition of
an advantage in trying to reach a   Loglan 1 (1989).
long term solution to our           
differences - something that we       The standard Lojban orthography
have long sought.  By having a set  makes use of 23 letters of the
of standard mappings between the    Roman alphabet, viz. a b c d e f g
two orthographies, it becomes       i j k l m n o p r s t u v x y z,
relatively trivial for someone to   plus the three signs:
write a program that can convert      apostrophe "'" for a voiceless
text written in one orthography to  intervocalic glide roughly similar
the other form.  Thus TLI           to English /h/;
Loglanists would have to do a

  comma "," for a voiced                    i,e i,i i,o i,u u,a u,e
intervocalic glide;                         u,i u,o u,u.
  period "." for a pause or
glottal stop.                         4) Capitalization is used for
Capitalization is used to repre-    the first letter of names, and for
sent abnormal non-penultimate       the cmavo ".i", which is written
stress in names:  the syllable to   "I".
be stressed is capitalized in its     5) Periods before words are
entirety.                           dropped.
  The letters i and u are used in     6) Periods after words are
three ways:  as full vowels, in     replaced by comma.  This comma
the falling diphthongs ai ei oi     cannot be confused with the comma
au, and in the rising diphthongs    of 3b and 3c, because that cannot
ia ie ii io iu ua ue ui uo uu.      appear at the end of a word.
The rising diphthongs appear only   However, periods at the end of
as stand-alone words and in names   names are dropped.
and borrowings.                       7) Syllabic r l m n are written
  The letters r l m n are used as   rr ll mm nn, and need not be set
normal consonants and as syllabic   off by comma.
consonants (in names and              8) Other uses of comma are
borrowings only).                   retained.  When doubt arises
  Double letters are never used     whether a comma represents a
for any purpose.                    voiced or a voiceless glide, the
                                    voiceless glide is preferred.
  The alternative orthography         9) Stress is indicated by an
[approximating the TLI system]      apostrophe following the vowel of
makes the following substitutions.  the stressed syllable.
  1) The letter "x" is replaced in  
all uses by "h".  It is useful to     Obviously, the alternative
emphasize here that this does not   orthography is much more "context-
represent a change in               sensitive" than the standard
pronunciation.                      orthography.  Two consecutive
  2) The diphthong au is replaced   vowels in the standard orthography
by ao.                              always represent a diphthong; in
  3) The apostrophe, which in the   the alternative orthography, they
standard orthography is used only   may represent a diphthong, two
between vowels, is replaced in the  syllables with a voiceless glide,
following ways:                     or two syllables with a voiced
    3a) In a'a a'e a'u e'a e'e e'o  glide, depending on the particular
        e'u o'a o'e o'o o'u, it is  two vowels and on the kind of word
        dropped, producing aa ae    in which they appear.  On the
        au ea ee eo eu oa oe oo     other hand, the difference between
        ou.                         syllabic and consonantal r l m n
    3b) In a'i a'o e'i o'i, it is   is clearly marked in the
        replaced by comma (sym-     alternative orthography.
        bolizing the syllable       
        break that accompanies the    Here is a passage of Lojban
        glide) producing a,i a,o    (written by Nick Nicholas) in both
        e,i o,i.                    orthographies:
    3c) In i'a i'e i'i i'o i'u u'a
        u'e u'i u'o u'u, it is      mi na certu le se zajbrnatleta
        dropped, producing ia ie    .iku'i mi co'a jimpe lenu mi poi
        ii io iu ua ue ui uo uu;    xelso cu no'e snada tu'a le la
        except that when these      olimpik. nunjvi pe vi la tokios.
        diphthongs appear standing  .isa'unai mi nu'o zmadu
        alone (as cmavo of selma'o  zo'epeca'aku leni snada  .iti'e le
        UI), or in names and        mulno nizyji'a cu te zmadu mi le
        borrowings, it is replaced  gugdrkore'a kuce'o le
        by comma, producing i,a     gugdrnafganistana kuce'o le
                                    gugdrkenia kuce'o le

gugdrtrinidada kuce'o le xanto      attain a community of native
denci xaskoi gugde  .iku'i mi       speakers, these pauses will be one
zmadu .u'a le gugdrlixtenctaine     of the first things to disappear.
.i lenu go'i cu pluka nuzba  .i
zmadu pluka fau le nu'o nu le           Lojban pauses need not be the
gugdrlixtenctaine cu se nunjvi la     kind of pauses used by
olimpik.                              separated-word speech
                                      recognizers; a glottal stop is a
                                      sufficient equivalent of pause.
mi na certu le se zajbrrnatleta       The two main uses of pauses are
I kui mi coa jimpe lenu mi poi        after names and before words
xelso cu noe snada tua le la          beginning with a vowel.  In the
Olimpik nunjvi pe vi la Tokios   I    first case, nothing will be able
saunai mi nuo zmadu zoepecaaku        to do much better; existing
leni snada   I tie le mulno           speech-recognition systems
nizyjia cu te zmadu mi le             simply punt on names in general,
gugdrrkorea kuceo le                  unless the name has been hard-
gugdrrnafganistana kuceo le           wired into the system as a word.
gugdrrkenia kuceo le                    Glottal stops before words
gugdrrtrinidada kuceo le xanto              beginning with a vowel are
denci xaskoi gugde   I kui mi               common enough in the
zmadu u,a le gugdrrlixtenctaine             world's languages:
I lenu go,i cu pluka nuzba   I              consider German, which
zmadu pluka fao le nuo nu le                does not notate such
gugdrrlixtenctaine cu se nunjvi la          glottal stops but whose
Olimpik                                     speakers (of the standard
                                            dialect, anyway) invari-
                                            ably produce them.  Not
Criticisms of Lojban as a Tool for          everybody speaks like
       Machine Translation                  anglophones - "English is
                                            the language you speak
[Rick Morneau posted some criti-            without moving your
cisms of Lojban as a language for           mouth", as my mother
machine translation (MT).  John             (native German, near-
Cowan responded to these, which             native English) used to
led Rick to try to clarify his ob-          say.
jections.  John Cowan then re-
sponded to the clarifications.            In some cases this is true,
The result is an excellent summary      especially when one word ends
of a number of the most common          in a vowel and the next starts
criticisms of Lojban, and the ar-       in a vowel.  However, there
guments that we believe refute          are some cases where a glottal
them.]                                  stop will not work:
                                          1. if a word ends in a
Here are the reasons why I feel         voiced nasal and the following
that Lojban is poorly suited for        word starts in an unvoiced
use as an interlingua in machine        fricative, stop or affricate.
translation:                              2. if a word ends in an
1. Lojban claims that its words         unvoiced fricative and the
are self-segregating.  Obviously,       following word starts in an
this feature is not needed for the      unvoiced fricative, stop or
analysis of written language, but       affricate.
it can greatly simplify the               In these situations a
analysis of continuous speech.          glottal stop will either be
Unfortunately, Lojban requires the      impossible to detect, or will
use of pauses in certain places in      be eliminated through normal
order to fully implement this           phonological processes.  If,
feature.  Enforced pauses are           however, these juxtapositions
unnatural and, should Lojban ever       can not occur in Lojban then I
                                        withdraw my criticism.

        These juxtapositions can      
      occur only if the first word    2. Lojban syntax is too complex.
      is a name, and (as I said     Regardless of the syntactic
      earlier) names are            formalism you swear by
      notoriously intractable.      (transformational grammar,
      They can violate the          government/binding theory,
      phonotactics of the language  generalized phrase structure
      in which they are embedded    grammar, lexical functional
      in random ways, and existing  grammar, home-brew grammar, ad
      word-based speech processors  nauseam), a natural language minus
      simply punt on them.          its idioms and irregularities can
        Lojbab adds:  This item     be represented with an equivalent
      seems irrelevant to the       of fewer than three dozen
      issue that Rick says he is    production rules.  If I remember
      arguing.  If he is solely     correctly, Lojban syntax requires
      concerned in his criticism    about ten times that number.
      with Lojban's suitability as  Lojbanists claim that it is ma-
      an interlingua for machine    chine-parsable, and I'm willing to
      translation of other          take their word for it.  However,
      languages, then               an MT interlingua (IL) should have
      recognizability of pauses in  a syntax that is as simple as
      a Lojban speech stream is     possible.  A simple syntax not
      irrelevant because a machine  only makes it easier to parse the
      translator would not be       IL, but more importantly, it makes
      processing Lojban speech.     translating from the source
      Mandatory phonemic pauses     language to the IL much easier.
      affect how humans speak the
      language and not on how           As simple as possible, but no
      difficult it is to translate    simpler.  The Lojban grammar is
      it.                             a phrase structure grammar - it
        Answering the issue for       does not have any transformation
      the case of a machine           (T) rules or their more modern
      attempting to understand        equivalents.  Chomsky introduced
      spoken Lojban, I note that      T rules, way back in Syntactic
      our statement is that a         Structures, because he didn't
      glottal stop is a sufficient    want to have to deal with phrase
      allophone of the phoneme        structure grammars with (by
      "pause".  If phonological       guesswork) 104 to 105 rules.
      processes cause a glottal       Lojban's 600-odd rules look
      stop to disappear, then         pretty simple by comparison.
      under those circumstances a       The existing parser generates
      Lojban speaker will need a            a complete parse of a
      more exaggerated 'pause'.  A          1600-word short story
      proper Lojban speaker will            (with some pretty hairy
      have sufficient pause in his          grammar - it's a
      or her dialect to separate            deliberately complex
      the words.  But errors in             translation of a Saki
      speech will occur.  To say            short story) in about 15
      that such errors in speech            seconds on a '386 machine.
      are a burden on the machine           The existing program is
      is a truism; we can also say          not optimized for speed
      that it is a burden on the            worth a damn - I
      machine if the speaker                concentrated on
      lisps, slips in voiced con-           maintainability.  On a
      sonants that are unvoiced,            'Real Computer', parsing
      or speaks with stops that             effort will be absolutely
      are insufficiently                    negligible.
      distinguished, all things
      that often happen in natural        Your response puzzled me.  A
      human speech.                     fast computer is not adequate

    justification for creating in-          [Lojbab adds:  Rick is
    efficient code, especially            making a big issue out of
    when the MT application itself        rule counts that are
    will be grasping greedily for         specific to the format in
    every cpu cycle it can get.           which they are presented -
    Also, Lojban's 600-odd rules          the language of input to the
    (twice as many as I thought!)         YACC processor that verifies
    is still almost twenty times          their unambiguity.  Another
    as much as needed.  So,               rule format describing the
    compared with a syntax                same language, the E-BNF
    designed explicitly for an MT         included with this issue of
    IL, Lojban's parser requires          JL, has only about 80 rules.
    only 20 times as much code as         Of the E-BNF rules, 15 are
    minimally necessary.  This is         associated with the grammar
    quite a selling point!                of mathematics (MEX), and 12
                                          are associated with the
        600 rules is for the full         tense system (described in
      language.  A pure in-               John Cowan's paper that ac-
      terlingua application would         companied JL16), leaving
      be unlikely to generate the         perhaps 50 to cover the
      full language.  A "core             whole remainder of the
      subset" could be constructed        grammar.
      that would be far more rigid          By comparison, Rick in a
      but far smaller, and yet            separate posting gave a
      truly be a subset.                  sample E-BNF set of rules
        However, I would also             for what he considered an
      point to an argument given          extremely "simple" grammar
      in The Elements of                  for a constructed language
      Programming Style.  A tricky        which has at least 40 E-BNF
      way of initializing a               rules, but not specifying
      identity matrix in FORTRAN          any MEX or tense grammar,
      is given, and the text              even though all language has
      explains why it works.              at least some rudiments of
      However, it then points out         each.
      that the time taken to                For an interlingua
      initialize such a matrix is         translation system, mathe-
      always insignificant.  In a         matical text would be
      program with small matrices,        translated notationally, not
      the time is insignificant in        in words, and hence MEX
      an absolute sense; in a             would not need to be part of
      program with large matrices,        a machine translation sys-
      the time is insignificant           tem.  Thus MEX is an example
      relative to the time spent          of John's statement that
      in all other matrix                 machine translation using
      operations, which are               Lojban would implement only
      typically n2 to n3 expen-           a subset of the Lojban
      sive.                               grammar.
        Furthermore, for IL                 Tense is an example of one
      applications there is no            of the many features of
      real need to keep the Lojban        natural language that are
      in text form; the conversion        not easily represented in a
      from tree form to text form         very simple language.  You
      is absolutely trivial.              might end up with an optimal
      (Lojban has no "obligatory          language for internal data
      transformations" in the             processing, but it is so
      sense of early Chomsky, so          cumbersome to use for humans
      you print out the tree and          that they cannot
      strip the parentheses.)             significantly input or read
                                          the internal texts.  Lojban
                                          tenses, expressing re-

      lationships in space and      In most natural language
      time about the referents of   processing applications, a
      the sentences they occur in,  sentence is represented using case
      could easily be expressed     frames or a close equivalent.  (In
      using expanded predicates     brief, case frames are a practical
      (and the conversion from      and elegant implementation of
      tense to predicate is         basic X-bar theory, which, in my
      probably trivial for most     opinion, gives tremendous
      cases that would occur in     credibility to its claim of cross-
      natural language), but the    linguistic applicability.)
      resulting text would be       Lojban's inflexible place
      longer and no easier to       structures and [selma'o] BAI
      convert to the tense          bandaids are not only
      structure of another          counterintuitive, but they force
      language.                     the computer to treat language
        Clearly.  Lojban is not     structures differently when they
      "20 times what is needed",    are essentially the same.  Each
      but rather is probably        predicate, in effect, has a built-
      fairly close in size to       in irregularity which requires
      Rick's 'minimal' grammar.     extra processing by the computer.
        Rick also misinterprets
      John's statement that he did      The present list does not do
      not design the parser for       the fact justice, but there are
      speed, and he jumped to a       in fact cross-predicate patterns
      false conclusion.  John's       of place structures.
      parser was designed for         Furthermore, it was believed to
      maintainability, to minimize    be more important to get each
      programming time, which is      word as nearly right as possible
      our critical resource these     than to shoe-horn the words into
      days.  "Inefficient code"       some existing framework.  There
      has plenty of "excuse" when     is simply a lot more complexity
      it gets the job done without    in the Real World (TM) than
      affecting critical              typical Schankian frames allow
      resources.  But Lojban can      for; lots and lots of idio-
      have faster processing:         syncrasy.  Still and all, 1300
      Jeff Taylor's earlier           place structures is simply not a
      parser, limited in text         whopping amount:  even given
      capacity, could do 1/4 of       that we don't believe it's
      Saki in about 5 seconds on a    possible to derive the place
      much slower 286 machine.        structures of compounds
        Finally, of course, Lojban    algorithmically from the place
      has the advantage of being      structures of the underlying
      usable both for internal        roots, those roots do constrain
      processing as well as by the    the resultant place structures
      linguists/natural language      to a marked degree.
      processing people who are
      building the knowledge              John interpreted my use of
      engine (see our DARPA             "case frames" as synonymous
      proposal in JL16).                with Schankian scripts.  Actu-
                                        ally, the two are not related
3. Lojban's predicate logic is not      at all.  My mention of X-bar
very "logical" in the way it is         theory should have clarified
used to represent natural               the matter, except, of course,
language.  (It may be "logical"         to those who are unfamiliar
for testing the Sapir-Whorf             with X-bar theory.  My
hypothesis, but this has no             apologies.
bearing on its use as an MT IL.)          In a case frame
It's assignment of place                representation, each node can
structures is too arbitrary and         be represented by a head and
inflexible for use as an MT IL.         its modifiers.  This is the

    essence of X-bar theory.              heuristics have not yet been
    Thus, a frame representing a          defined.)
    noun phrase would have the              To take an English
    main noun as its head and the         example, "I see the dog"
    modifiers as adjuncts that            involves a predicate "see"
    follow the head in the frame.         and two arguments "I" and
    (A modifier can also be a             "the dog".  The definition
    complete relative clause, in          of "see" determines which of
    which case it would be rep-           these is the seer and which
    resented by the equivalent of         the seen, but Lojban treats
    a separate sub-frame).  A             them as syntactically
    sentence would have the main          identical.
    verb as its head, and noun      
    phrases that are arguments of   4. Lojban's list of concept
    the verb would, in effect, be   primitives (gismu) is inadequate
    its modifiers.  These           and lacks semantic motivation.
    structures, of course, are re-  Now, I've read hand-waving
    cursive.  Note that,            arguments claiming that the gismu
    syntactically, all elements in  are not semantic primitives.  Yet
    a frame that modify their       that is exactly the way they are
    heads are treated equally.      used.  The fact is, an awful lot
    Note also, that these case      of work has been done in both
    frames are simply an easy way   computational and theoretical
    to represent syntactic trees    linguistics in the search for a
    in a computer.  Lojban predi-   meaningful set of semantic
    cates and their designer-       primitives.  A few examples are
    selected, pseudo-thematic       Silvio Ceccato's semantic
    place structures force          hierarchies (circa 1950-1960),
    arguments to be treated dif-    Yorick Wilks semantic primitives
    ferently when they are          (circa 1977), Roger Schank's
    essentially the same.  In       primitive ACTs (circa 1977),
    other words, some branches of   Donald Fass's comprehensive genus
    the tree will require           classification (mid 1980's), Anna
    different code to handle than   Wierzbicka's semantic primitives
    other branches.  Nothing is     (1970-1980), and, most recently,
    gained except counter-          Kathleen Dahlgren's knowledge
    productive complexity.          representation work (1989).  Any
      So, although Lojban's         one of these systems could be used
    predicate structures do not     as is, or modified for use in the
    make the job impossible, they   design of an AL.  And any one of
    do make it much more difficult  them would have provided a solid
    than it has to be.              foundation for the semantics of an
                                    AL.  Now, I realize that Loglan
        I do not understand this    got its start before most of the
      argument.  There seems to be  work I mentioned above.  However,
      a shift between talk of       Loglanists and Lojbanists have
      syntax and talk of            been modifying and repairing their
      semantics.  The arguments of  languages since then, and, as far
      a Lojban predicate are        as I'm concerned, if something is
      syntactically all equal;      broken it should be fixed.  This
      semantically, each one plays  is especially true if Lojban is to
      a specified role.  Which      be suitable for use as an MT IL,
      role can be determined by     and if its semantics are to be as
      looking in the dictionary,    "logical" as its other features.
      or if the word is a compound
      which is not in the diction-      The best indication that none
      ary, by applying a set of       of these "semantic primes"
      heuristics.  (Despite sev-      systems is fully adequate for
      eral efforts, those             mapping the real world is the

  very fact that there are so many        everything? Lojban's gismu
  of them.  The empirical                 list is a posteriori and
  derivation of the gismu list is         merges semantic lists from
  admitted.  Some of the words do         several different sources.
  not belong in any list of               It may not be the most
  semantic primes, and others             tractable possible list, but
  exist for historical reasons            it is a usable list in a
  only.  We do repair things, but         deep sense.  Furthermore,
  only when they are demonstrably         the same consideration
  broken; there has been no effort        mentioned under syntax
  to reduce the number of gismu en        applies here.  There is no
  masse.  We in Lojbanistan (he           reason to suppose that the
  said) simply do not believe that        IL generator will have
  there exists any truly                  sufficient smarts (or re-
  comprehensive semantic system           sources) to generate text
  for mapping the immense variety         that involves every one of
  of real-world predicates into a         the 1300-odd root words.
  categorical or hierarchical sys-
  tem.  Instead, the gismu are              [Lojbab adds:  That there
  meant to blanket semantic space,        is no semantic theory in our
  ensuring that what needs to be          selection of basic roots
  expressed can be expressed.             need not be a failing - one
  Even so, large areas of                 has to show that some
  semantically "shallow" but              semantic theory is
  "broad" space are underserved:          universally enough true to
  foods, cultures, materials,             give a better result.  But
  living organisms.  These                since we contend to be able
  semantic areas will be covered          to express most any concept
  by borrowings from natural lan-         within Lojban, it doesn't
  guages.                                 really matter what our set
                                          of roots are.]
      Of course there isn't a
    system, otherwise linguists           If you're still not
    wouldn't be working on it.          convinced, then consider this:
    What I failed to make clear         there is not yet a single
    was that there's no need for a      comprehensive theory of
    comprehensive, unchallenged         syntax.  Did this lack of a
    theory on which one could base      comprehensive theory prevent
    the design of an AL.  Keep in       the Lojban designers from
    mind that linguists are trying      designing a rigorous, machine-
    to develop a theory that will       tractable syntax?
    correctly describe and explain
    the totality of human                   The history of the Loglan
    language.  An AL designer             Project shows that the
    needs only a single, simple           rigorous machine-tractable
    system that can be applied            syntax was not actually
    rigorously and that is suffi-         achieved until a systematic
    ciently robust to allow any           re-design of the grammar was
    human language statement to be        undertaken using YACC as an
    accurately converted into the         indispensable tool.  I do
    AL.                                   not mean that the language
                                          was changed to make YACC-ing
        "A single, simple system          easier; the only changes
      [of semantics]" - ah,               made were those forced by
      there's the rub.  How can           the goal of "0 shift-reduce,
      you be sure that your               0 reduce-reduce conflicts
      "single, simple system",            found".
      presumably designed a                 If the theory and practice
      priori, really does cover           of LALR(1) parsing was not

      so well understood, I doubt     house for inhabitants who are
      that Lojban would have a        blue, a house that is blue in
      "rigorous, machine-tractable    the appropriate way for houses,
      syntax".  There is simply       a house for people who are
      nothing comparable in the       slowly turning blue,...  Since
      semantic domain for checking    the first requisite of Lojban is
      the correctness and             that it be speakable (it is a
      completeness of a design.       human language, not a code), not
                                      all ambiguity can be weeded out.
5.  Lojban's process of creating      Lojban works on removing
compound words from its set of        structural ambiguity so that the
primitives seems to depend on con-    real problems of semantic
textual disambiguation for proper     ambiguity can be openly faced.
understanding.  In other words, it
is as "illogical" as the same           lo cimni ka satci cu se jdima
process in natural languages.  (I       lo cimni ni valsi
believe that Jim Carter has             the-thing-which-is-an infinite
criticized Loglanists for this          type-of quality-of preciseness
lack.)  In computer translation,        has-as-price the-thing-which-
the computer will often run into a      is-an infinite type-of
situation where a compound word in      quantity-of words
the IL does not have a counterpart      The price of infinite
in the target language.  In this        precision is infinite
situation, the computer must be         verbosity.
able to break up the word into an
equivalent phrase or clause.  In          I failed to make clear that
other words, the computer must be       such a compromise can be
able to generate a paraphrase of        achieved along with the
the relationship between the more       reversible compositionality
primitive components of the             that is needed in machine
compound.  You can, of course, put      translation.  For example, the
this information in the                 English compound "houseboat"
dictionary, but this solution is        can be decomposed as "boat
not at all practical if you want        which functions as a house".
to keep your dictionaries simple,       The compound "windowpane" can
and if you want to have one             be decomposed as "pane which
dictionary per natural language         is part of a window".  In a
usable for both source and target       machine translation
translation.  I could say much          application, the relationships
more on this extremely important        "which functions as" and
topic, but to do so would take          "which is a part of" must be
more time than I have, and this         explicitly stated in the
thing is already too long.  In          compound word.  This can
summary, though, an IL designed         always be done with the addi-
for use in MT must be maximally         tion of a single morpheme
and reversibly compositional.           which would, in effect, link
                                        the component morphemes and
    There are two separate points       indicate the relationship that
  to sort out here:  the mapping        exists between them.  This
  of compounds to phrases, and the      would normally mean an
  explication of phrases.  Every        additional syllable (and, of
  compound can be mapped to a           course, an appropriately de-
  phrase, and potentially every         signed morphology), and
  phrase to a compound, unambigu-       apparently many people would
  ously and reversibly.  What is        object to this for esthetic
  left ambiguous is the precise         reasons.  However, one
  set of compositional rules.           additional syllable is a small
  Does  "blanu zdani" (blue house)      price to pay when the
  mean a house that is blue, a          potential reward is so high.
  house part of which is blue, a

    Without this simple                     languages, forces
    "sacrifice", your AL will be            ambiguity to be squeezed
    useless as an IL.                       out before a correct
                                            translation can be
        Lojban compounds (whether           generated.  (I am not
      closed or open) are by                referring here to the
      design semantically                   problem of translating
      ambiguous.  However, there            intentional ambiguity, as
      are always paraphrases which          in poetry, which is surely
      disambiguate them.  An IL             far beyond the state-of-
      generator would presumably            the-art of any computer-
      not generate ambiguous                based technique.)  If all
      compounds.                            languages without
                                            exception deviated from
6. Finally, a logical language is           predicate logic in the
inherently unsuitable for                   same ways, then the need
representing natural language.              for a neutral medium would
Lojban is called a logical                  not exist - but they
language for good reason.  It               don't.  For example,
forces a speaker to express                 Lojban can be neutral
himself according to various rules          among languages that
of logic.  Natural languages do             affirm a negative question
not require a speaker to be                 with "No" (like English),
logical in the same way.  As a              with "Yes" (like Russian),
result, when translating from a             and that repeat the
natural language into Lojban, the           negated verb (like Irish).
computer will often have to fully
understand what the speaker is            How can "being equally
saying (to "fill in the gaps", so       foreign to all natural
to speak), which is well beyond         languages" be anything but an
the capabilities needed for normal      impassible barrier?  An
disambiguation.  It is also well        interlingua designed for use
beyond the capabilities of              in machine translation must
computers.                              be, as much as humanly
                                        possible, a reductive and
    But is it "well beyond the          fundamental distillation of
  capabilities needed" in all           the essential features of
  cases?  It seems to me that           natural language.  Not even
  given two languages A and B, and      the slightest degree of
  three meanings a, b, c, that          "foreignness" can be
  language A expresses a and b          tolerated.
  with an ambiguous sentence,
  whereas language B expresses b            "The" essential features?
  and c with an ambiguous                 Which are those?  Unless you
  sentence.  If meaning b is              have a theory (or at least a
  intended, then translating              set of heuristics) telling
  ambiguity with ambiguity is a           you the essential features,
  safe procedure - but in                 your project will be
  translating a from A into B, or         inherently parochialized by
  c from B into A, the ambiguity          the particular case you
  must be tackled and resolved.  A        choose to debug it with.
  system that does not "fully un-         Lojban is intended to
  derstand what the speaker is            provide a framework which
  saying" will inevitably make            minimizes metaphysical
  blunders of this type.                  assumptions; thus S/W is
    The neutral framework of              assumed as a hypothesis (its
        predicate logic which Loj-        falsity is the null hy-
        ban employs, being equally        pothesis to be rejected).
        foreign to all natural            Therefore, the assumptions
                                          of the original must be

      spelled out in the Lojban             Anyhow, I meant to use the
      version, which can then be          aphorism rather than
      interpreted and reduced by          mentioning it; I was
      the process that composes           pointing out that if Lojban
      the translation.                    is confined to fully
                                          explicit semantic forms, it
      John wrote the Lojban for           will be unspeakable because
    "The price of infinite                too verbose.  Even your
    precision is infinite                 glosses like "boat which
    verbosity."                           functions as a house" are
      This is such a simple               not really enough.  Pre-
    statement in English (and             cisely which of the
    equally simple in Swahili and         "functions" of the house are
    French and Indonesian and how         provided by the houseboat,
    many others?), yet how complex        and which are not?  For
    and convoluted it is in               example, one of the
    Lojban!  I shudder at the             functions of a house may be
    thought of designing software         to serve as a recipient of
    that is smart enough to know          mail, but a houseboat
    that "infinite precision" must        typically does not.  So you
    be paraphrased as "the-thing-         need something like "boat
    which-is-an infinite type-of          which functions as a house
    quality-of preciseness", and          in that it provides shelter
    that "infinite verbosity" must        and a fixed platform for
    be paraphrased as "the-thing-         engaging in normal domestic
    which-is-an infinite type-of          behavior".  Each word in
    quantity-of words".  I'm not          this expansion itself re-
    even sure it's possible.  The         quires further expansion; in
    degree of understanding needed        particular, "fixed" with
    to generate these paraphrases         respect to what?  Obviously
    may be required by natural            not the shore of the river!
    language understanding                  [Lojbab adds:]  In case
    systems, but not by machine           the motivation for John's
    translation systems.                  last point isn't clear, I
                                          want to point out that there
        It is an aphorism of              may not be a word
      Lojbanic culture (such as it        corresponding to "houseboat"
      is), making use of the full         in every natural language -
      resources of the Lojban             or that might be more than
      language.  The literal gloss        one, with significant minor
      is complex and convoluted,          denotation differences based
      but that is because Lojban          on exactly which functions
      is not encoded English.             are performed.  Would the
        Somewhere or other,               Chinese word for the boats
      Jespersen has translations          that people live on in the
      of "First come, first               rivers and ports of China be
      served", an aphorism which          an accurate translation for
      is simple and terse in              English "houseboat" in every
      English, into French and            instance of the latter's
      Danish.  The French isn't           occurrence.
      bad, but the Danish is                I'm not sure that a
      incredibly verbose and              successful machine transla-
      downright baroque.  I can           tion system can be anything
      just imagine what the Danish        less than a full-featured
      (Swahili, Bahasa Indonesia,         natural language system,
      ...) for "The more the              unless you intend to have
      merrier, but the fewer the          substantial human translator
      better fare" looks like!            verification of every single
                                          word choice made.

      In summary, I feel that an      of data is needed to capture the
    interlingua for use in machine    "total" meaning of a statement.]
    translation must be as close    
    as we can come to the elusive   In summary, I do not feel that
    "universal grammar".  In        Lojban (or Glosa, or Esperanto, or
    attempting to provide a test    Vorlin) is suitable for use as a
    for the Sapir-Whorf             machine translation interlingua,
    hypothesis, Loglan designers    in spite of claims to the con-
    have had no choice but to go    trary.  Most importantly, I see
    in exactly the opposite         nothing in Lojban that would
    direction.                      facilitate the most difficult
                                    aspect of machine translation:
By the way, most of the claims      translating from a natural lan-
I've heard about Lojban's           guage to the interlingua.  What I
suitability for use as an MT IL     do see is an AL that has so little
seem to be based on its underlying  in common with natural languages,
predicate structure.  Now, many     that translating between it and a
(most?) linguists and logicians     natural language will be con-
are of the opinion that predicate   siderably more difficult than
logic is not suitable for repre-    translating directly between
senting natural language.  Some,    natural languages.  And this does
however, disagree and have created  not surprise me at all,
a school of semantics usually       considering that Loglan/Lojban was
called Montague semantics (other    designed to test the Sapir-Whorf
names and minor variations are      hypothesis.  Such a language, by
model-theoretic semantics, truth-   its very nature, would be the
conditional semantics and           antithesis of what is needed for
possible-worlds semantics).  These  an MT IL, no matter how "logical"
linguists are attempting to do      it is.
what Loglanists claim to have       Finally, I realize that much of
already done; i.e., developing a    what I've said is potentially
formal and unambiguous method for   flammable.  However, I'd like to
representing natural language.      make it clear that I have no
So, if you do in fact make this     intention of angering anyone, and,
claim, then you might want to test  if I have, please accept my
it on the people who count the      apologies.  I can even admit the
most - the Montague semanticists.   possibility that I've
Show them how predicate logic and   misunderstood some of the features
its accessories can be used to      of Lojban that I've criticized
represent natural language.  If it  (although I doubt it).  Also,
means learning their lingo (and it  please keep in mind that I've only
probably will if you want to get    criticized one aspect of Lojban -
their attention), then do it!  The  its claimed suitability for use as
burden of proof, however, is on     a machine interlingua.  In most
you.                                other respects I find Lojban to be
                                    a fascinating language, and, if I
    [Lojbab responds:  pc studied   were not committed to learning
  semantics under Montague at       other languages as part of my MT
  UCLA, and is quite capable of     hobby, I would probably be
  speaking the lingo.  But Loglan   studying Lojban (in spite of its
  does not claim to unambiguously   ugly consonant clusters :-).
  handle semantics of natural
  language; indeed I claim that         Lojbab:  I would not be angry
  semantics is impossible to          with Rick Morneau for what
  handle unambiguously because it     appears to be an honest
  is dependent on the whole of the    difference of opinion.  Nor do I
  speaker's and listener's            say that Rick's arguments are
  background experiences as well      ones that cannot or should not
  as on the current context, and      be raised.  I believe that some
  thus a virtually infinite amount

  of them do not apply to Lojban,           important to the
  some do not apply to Lojban as            translation.
  it would be used in an MT             For example, the English
  application, and some are simply          phrase "ship which is
  irrelevant, or at best matters            faster than light", which
  of opinion.                               may also be expressed as
    In some matters of opinion,             "faster-than-light ship".
        there is not always an              Does an interlingua for MT
        'ironclad' method of                need the capability to
        refuting them.  The rule-           separately distinguish the
        counting game is an                 two forms, which probably
        example, since comparing            mean almost identical
        rule counts is so                   things, if not totally
        dependent on how they are           identical in meaning?
        stated, and what features           This is a design decision,
        of the language are                 not a theory decision.  If
        included in the not-yet-            the target language offers
        designed Lojban machine             equivalent forms to the
        translation system.  Which          two English variations,
        rules would be used is              then preserving the form
        going to be determined by           of the original is
        the MT system designer              valuable in achieving a
        based on factors that are           natural-seeming style in
        not knowable now.                   the output of the
    Lojban features such as the             translation.  If merely
        tense system each reflect           the information is to be
        things that occur in                transferred, then such
        natural languages, and to           stylistic preservation is
        eliminate one means that            wasted.  Lojban has rules
        the translator will have            that support both forms.
        to use software to                  An MT system designer that
        simplify or paraphrase in           did not care to support
        translation into Lojban,            both forms could easily
        though it might then                leave out one rule from
        simplify the processing             the Lojban interlingua.
        out of Lojban thereafter,           But in a 10-language
        when the Lojban has to be           system, this potentially
        processed.                          means that you must write
    Indeed in writing this last             10 input processors to
        sentence, I realize that I          decide that such ordering
        believe the opposite of             information is to be
        Rick.  The basis of an              simplified out into the
        interlingua-based MT                single remaining Lojban
        system is to minimize               (or other interlingua)
        language-specific                   form, and then you need 10
        processing for source and           output processors that
        target languages, which             will decide based on some
        processing expands at a             criteria which of two or
        higher degree polynomial            more output forms in the
        of the number of languages          target language will
        in a non-interlingua                reflect the single Lojban
        system.  An interlingua             form.  Clearly, in such a
        which is ultra-simplified           situation, an
        requires that the source            oversimplified Lojban or
        language be paraphrased in          other interlingua
        an ultra-simplified manner          increases the processing
        which may lose significant          required.  The better
        information that could be           interlingua is the one
                                            that can convey the
                                            maximum amount of complex

        information across the      mailing list
        language boundaries.        "", Lojbab
    As an example of one of Rick's  wrote:
        claims that is an ir-
        refutable argument, look    Michael Kac says:
        at the claim that natural     On the basis of unsystematic
        languages are too complex     observation and impressionistic
        to be modelled by a           judgements which are confirmed
        logical language.  If         by all other linguists I've
        there is more that I am       consulted, it would appear that
        missing, I apologize.  But    the view that one's world view
        this is an argument by as-    is determined by the language
        sertion, since Rick has       one speaks is nearly universally
        not posed any specific        accepted by educated people who
        natural language feature      aren't linguists.
        that cannot be modelled by  
        a logical language - he       I'll concur, as well, and my
        has merely argued from      primary interaction is with such
        assumptions.  That these    people. The exceptions to this are
        assumptions are plausible   correlated with politics, with
        does not mean that they     some people (usually 'left')
        are correct.  While Rick    considering linguistic relativism
        states that logical         to be racist. However, even these
        analysis has failed in the  people are inconsistent, since the
        case of Montague grammar    arguments about gender and pro-
        semantics, another poster   nouns/language-gender (including
        noted that Montague         the recent one on Linguist List)
        grammars have been used in  inherently assume some form of
        MT systems.                 language effect on world-view, or
    Whether natural languages are   it wouldn't make any difference.
        too complex to be modelled  Note that the occasionally emotive
        by a logical language is    arguments in this latter dis-
        probably indeterminate.     cussion shows that even linguists
        For every example Rick      may to some extent assume what
        poses, I may be able to     they claim they don't.
        find a counter, but this      Factors in the continuing belief
        does not stop him from      include:
        claiming that there are
        many more that I have not     a) what people mean by 'world
        covered.                    view' and 'determined' is
    Since Lojban does not embed     different. Sapir-Whorf is
        any particular semantic     generally understood to have
        theory into its design,     strong and weak versions, with the
        attacking Montague          strongest form almost certainly
        grammars doesn't say much   false because translation IS
        about Lojban anyway.  To    possible, and the weakest form
        say that our design is      true to the point of triteness.
        inadequate, you have to       b) the field of semiotics is
        show how it fails.  Rick    heavily dependent on assuming
        has not.  I would contend   linguistic relativism, and most
        that he cannot, without     educated people are more exposed
        getting much deeper into    to literary criticism than
        the Lojban design than he   linguistic theory.
        probably cares to.            c) the continuing identification
                                    of political issues with the
  Discussions on the Sapir-Whorf    linguistic relativity assumption.
            Hypothesis              As such, people are continually
                                    exposed to the assumption in daily
  In a discussion of Sapir-Whorf    life without it being explicitly
on the Linguist List linguistic     identified as a hidden assumption.

  d) I believe certain areas of     conducted in the 50s truly settled
anthropological linguistics still   the issue.  Supporters of the
accept Sapir-Whorf to some extent,  hypothesis seem to think that
especially where the researcher is  linguists abandoned the issue ei-
in the anthropology department      ther because they could not prove
rather than the linguistics dept.   it one way or the other, or
My source of this is Reed Riner at  because the idea became unfash-
U. of No. Arizona, but I think I    ionable or even non-P.C. with the
heard something similar from John   rise of Chomsky's ideas.
Atkins who was at U. of               If unambiguously true, the
Washington.                         hypothesis itself is uninter-
  I've used the phrase 'linguistic  esting.  Until the bounds of its
relativity' because when actually   truth are explored, the philo-
pinned down, many people will say   sophical implications will
that they aren't sure whether       continue to be profound.
language determines world-view or     I think there is some
vice versa, but that there is       considerable correlation in atti-
obviously a relation.               tude on linguistic relativity and
                                    language prescriptivism.  In the
  I guess I don't find that         latter area as well, linguists
  particularly strange (a lot of    tend to have a considerable dis-
  my friends, however, consider ME  agreement with the educated-
  extremely strange for being       populace-at-large, who consider it
  skeptical on this point);         a truism that there is a right way
                                    to speak and use a language and
  The Loglan (artificial language)  other usages are wrong.  This as-
project has the goal (among         sumption is also considered
others) of testing the 'Sapir-      'obvious', and when its fallacies
Whorf hypothesis'.  Those of us     and philosophical implications are
working on the project, linguists   pointed out, also considered pro-
or not, are assumed by many to      found.
'believe in' the SWH, though we     __________________________________
are predominantly agnostic or                    _______
skeptical like you.  I think it is                   
again an unquestioning assumption   A lively debate ensued, partly in
that the concept holds, with        response to these comments.
little analysis of the              
implications, that leads to this    Niko Besnier, Department of
assumption.                         Anthropology, Yale University
                                    <UTTANU@YALEVM.BITNET> replied:
  I do find it somewhat odd that
  people who accept this view seem    The reason why linguistic
  to think that it is (a)           anthropologists "still" believe in
  obviously correct, and (b)        some version of the Sapir-Whorf
  profound, a contradiction in      Hypothesis (SWH) is not that they
  terms.  I welcome further data    know less about language than
  and insights.                     mainstream linguists (many fields
                                    have much to say about language,
                                    and it is a delusion to think that
  Again, I think people assume the  any one field has a monopoly on
concept to be obviously correct in  the subject), but that they focus
some 'weak' form and also intu-     on language in a different way
itively realize that it breaks      from linguists.  The prototypical
down in some stronger form.         anthropological paradigm focuses
  The profundity is due to the      on diversity, on the particular,
never-ending political and          and builds theory on the
philosophical implications of the   particular, looking at, for
assumed-true concept.  That the     example, relational patterns
hypothesis isn't even well stated   between the particular in language
means that none of the tests        and the particular in society and

culture.  This contrasts with the   are in fact very different from
avowed universalism extant in most  areas that Whorf is usually said
linguistic paradigms.  Having been  to have claimed to be
"brought up" in the latter          deterministic.  I'd point to work
paradigm, to then move to some      like that of Elinor Ochs as
version of the former, I am at a    example of where determinism is to
loss to decide that one is          be found between language and
"better," more intellectually       habitual thought: the shape of,
worthwhile, etc., than the other.   even the presence/absence of baby
I doubt that mud-slinging           talk in a speech community,
("butterfly collector!"             provides a pretty strong
"universalist-schmuniversalist!")   deterministic "lesson" to language
will get either field very far.     acquirers about the relationship
  There is room for the SWH in a    between structure (= institutions)
particularistic approach to         and agency (= person) extant in
language. But what it has to be     the society, i.e. about the type
grounded on is a careful reading    of things that social theorists
of poor Whorf, who must be on the   worry about.
most misread (unread?) thinkers of    This posting is already too
the century. Interpretations of     long, but I'd like to point to
Whorf extant amongst mainstream     Alan Rumsey's (1990) paper,
linguists have little to do with    "Wording, Meaning, and Linguistic
what Whorf actually wrote, and      Ideology," American Anthropologist
this had led linguists to call the  92:346-361, for an excellent
man by all sorts of names (e.g.     discussion of where Whorfianism
"weekend linguist" - Geoffrey       works.
Pullum in NLLT).  It is telling,    
for example, that in my linguistic  __________________________________
training at two institutions I was                ______
never required to read a single                      
original text by Whorf.  To a       [Bruce Nevin gave a very detailed
certain extent this is under-       and informative discussion of the
standable, since Whorf wrote in an  Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis.  He has
opaque, dense style.                given us permission to publish the
  John Lucy ("Whorf's view of the   entire text which is part of a
linguistic mediation of thought,"   longer work-in-progress.  The I,
in Semiotic Mediation, ed. by       II, and III perspectives listed in
Elizabeth Mertz & Richard           the text are not his but as cited.
Parmentier, Academic P, 1985)       Following is Bruce's relevant
shows that one of the important     background.
aspects of the SWH missing from       Bruce Nevin received his AB and
laypersons' accounts (i.e.          AM degrees in linguistics from the
accounts by those who have not      University of Pennsylvania in 1969
read Whorf) is that Whorf is not    and 1970.  From 1970 through 1974
talking about determinism by all    he did extensive fieldwork on
of language of all aspects of       Achumawi, a Hokan language spoken
world view.  Rather, fashions of    in the northeastern corner of
speaking determine habitual         California.  He resumed PhD ma-
thought.  Fashions of speaking are  triculation at the University of
broad patternings of grammatical    Pennsylvania in 1987, intending to
categories and discourse            use the Achumawi material in the
strategies in a language, across    dissertation.  He has been em-
what Whorf calls overt and covert   ployed as a writer by Bolt Beranek
categories.  Areas of language      and Newman (BBN) in Cambridge,
where one should seek "weak"        Massachusetts since 1982.
determinism (the strong version of    The following is Copyright 1991
determinism was never advocated by  by Bruce Nevin, <>.]
Whorf, but by subsequent linguists  
who never seem to have read Whorf)

  I want to outline the views of      in which different societies
Sapir and of Whorf on linguistic      live are distinct worlds, not
and cultural relativism as I          merely the same world with
understand them and survey some of    different labels attached."
what has been done with these
ideas, both as deriving explicitly    It was in this sense that he
from their writings and as arising  made his famous assertion "The
from less clearly articulated       fact of the matter is that the
cultural and intellectual an-       'real world' is to a large extent
tecedents that it is difficult for  unconsciously built up on the
any of us not in some measure to    language habits of the group."
share as we grapple with            (Preceding quotations all loc.
universals and idiosyncrasies of    cit.)
language and culture.                 The core of the matter for
  These ideas arose for Sapir in    Sapir, however, was an iden-
the context of his work on          tification of language,
language typology on the one hand   specifically grammatical cate-
and psychology on the other.  In    gories, with thought:
the background lay social
Darwinism, or at least the            "I quite frankly commit myself
pervasive evolutionist perspective    to the idea that thought is im-
of 19th-century anthropology, and     possible without language, that
in this respect Sapir's interest      thought is language."  (In a
here was a continuation of Boas'      letter of 8 April 1921 keeping
restitution of "primitive" lan-       Lowie abreast of progress on the
guages as on an equal footing with    manuscript of Language; quoted
the languages of familiar literate    in Darnell 1990:99.)
cultures, and an all-important
entree into "the network of           In other places, Sapir severely
cultural patterns of a              divorces language from culture,
civilization," which "In a sense    but in this he appears to mean
... is indexed in the language      material culture, the "inventory"
which expresses that                of cultural artefacts.  The
civilization."  (1929:162)          correlation of these things with
  In his conception of the          associated vocabulary he regarded
relation of language, personality,  as trivial.2
culture, and "the world," Sapir        Whorf may have been a
distinguished between social        Theosophist.  His philosophical
reality:                            interests attracted him to Sapir
                                    and to linguistics, and his
  "Language is a guide to `social   fascination with the "hidden
  reality.' ... it powerfully con-  metaphysics" of languages remained
  ditions all our thinking about    always the central thing for him,
  social problems and processes     for which the tools of linguistics
  ... the world of social activity  were subordinate means.  From the
  as ordinarily understood"1

and objective reality, as had       ____________________
Durckheim and others, and affirmed
of the former that:                 2Darnell (1990:434 n) says:
                                    Sapir's strongest relativity
  "No two languages are ever        statement was a brief note titled
  sufficiently similar to be        "Conceptual Categories of
  considered as representing the    Primitive Languages," an abstract
  same social reality.  The worlds  of a paper read to the National
                                    Academy of Sciences in 1931.  This
____________________                was published only after his
1Hoijer, in the 1953 conference     death.  Her bibliography lists it
proceedings, adduces passages of a  as appearing in Science 74:578.  I
similar sort in the writings of     have not seen it and cannot
Boas.                               comment.

point of view of an emerging          organization which may concen-
profession, then, he was quite        trate systematically upon
literally eccentric, in that          certain phases of reality, cer-
specific sense.  His ideas began      tain aspects of intelligence,
to crystallize with preparation to    and may systematically discard
teach a course at Yale during         others featured by other
Sapir's leave in 1937-38.  His in-    languages.  The individual is
tention was to "excite [students']    utterly unaware of this
interest in the linguistic            organization and is constrained
approach as a way of developing       complete within its unbreakable
understanding of the ideology of      bonds."  (256)
other peoples" (letter to Spier).
He would focus on "a psychological    Since:
direction, and the problems of:
                                      "if a rule has absolutely no
  "meaning, thought and idea in       exceptions, it is not recognized
  so-called primitive cultures,"      as a rule or as anything else;
  aiming to "reveal psychic           it is then part of the
  factors or constants" and the       background of experience of
  "organization of raw experience     which we tend to remain un-
  into a consistent and readily       conscious.
  communicable universe of ideas
  through the medium of linguistic    In the background always is
  patterns" (to Carroll; both       Theosophy, as in The Voice of the
  quoted in Darnell 1990:381).      Silence:

  Whorf developed his ideas about     The mind is the great slayer of
  linguistic relativity during        the real."  (Quoted on p. 253)
  Sapir's illness and elaborated
  it after his death, so Sapir        His views were recast in terms
  never had a chance to comment.    more acceptable to prevalent
  Whorf died in 1941 at the age of  conceptions of operational test
  forty-four, leaving less          and verification, as by Eric
  sympathetic colleagues to pursue  Lenneberg in 1953, summarized by
  the implications of his work.     Roger Brown (Reference:  In
  (Darnell 1990:375)                Memorial Tribute to Eric
                                    Lenneberg, Cognition 4:125-153):
  Sapir had confined the
constitutive role of language to        I. Structural differences
social reality. Whorf went            between language systems will,
farther, and developed the claim      in general, be paralleled by
that:                                 nonlinguistic cognitive dif-
                                      ferences, of an unspecified
  "It is the grammatical              sort, in the native speakers of
  background of our mother tongue,    the two languages.
  which includes not only our way
  of constructing propositions but     II. The structure of anyone's
  the way we dissect nature and       native language strongly influ-
  break up the flux of experience     ences or fully determines the
  into objects and entities to        world-view he will acquire as he
  construct propositions about."      learns the language. (p. 128)
                                      Behind this was the assumption
  The identification of language    (presumably "part of the
and thought takes an adversative    unconscious background" of every
twist:                              student in the Boas-Sapir
                                    tradition, and indeed of virtually
  "[T]hinking ... follows a         everyone as has been argued on the
  network of tracks laid down in    LINGUIST list) that:
  the given language, an

  III. Languages, and hence         other than color perception, in
  cognitive systems, can vary       particular domains (they mention
  without constraint.               religion) where characteristics of
                                    peripheral neural mechanisms like
  Proposition II has generally      those of color perception have no
been presumed to be untestable      bearing.
because of the identification of      A parallel tradition of research
language and any means of           into aspect I of the hypothesis
communicating one's world-view.     has been carried out primarily by
Attempts to verify or falsify the   psychologists, and Kay and Kempton
hypothesis have concerned           (1984) is a continuation of this.
themselves either with I or III     They cite Brown and Lennebert
(with indirect evidence for II      1954, Burnham and Clark 1955,
sought from III).  It would be in-  Lenneberg 1961, Lantz and Stefflre
teresting to see a resumption of    1964, and Stefflre, Castillo, and
attention to II; e.g. employing     Morely 1966.  This line of
techniques developed for study of   research seeks a correlation
non-human communication.            between a linguistic variable
  A conference organized by Robert  (codability and communication
Redfield in 1953 drew together a    accuracy) and a nonlinguistic
relatively small number of lin-     cognitive variable (memorability)
guists and anthropologists with     within a single language, and is
the aim of defining problems        thus a weak form of I.
related to the hypothesis,            After initial claims of success
reviewing work undertaken and       in finding a positive correlation
plans for future work relating to   between the memorability of a
it, and attempting to establish a   color and its value on a
minimal framework of institutional  linguistic variable, Rosch showed
support for these research inter-   that both memorability and the
ests. Their proposals concerned     combined variable of codability
mostly methods for getting at I.    and accuracy of communication is
Their conclusions were cautious,    determined universally by focality
as noted above, in keeping with     or perceptual salience.  The
the temper of the times.            assumption that the linguistic
  Kay and Kempton (AA 86:66),       variables of codability and
perhaps somewhat parochially but    communication accuracy differ
truthfully as regards empirical     across languages (III again) was
research, claim that most of this   falsified by this research, and
research has been in the domain of  therefore any correlation between
color.  They give citations of      memorability and a linguistic
work bearing on III beginning       variable was not relevant to the
about the time of the Redfield      hypothesis.  Lucy and Shweder
conference (Ray 1952, Conklin       determined that the problem of
1955, Lenneberg and Roberts 1956,   focality or salience was an
Gleason 1961, Bohannan 1963), and   artefact of how the color chips
probably the best known study,      were presented, and devised an
their own (Berlin and Kay 1969).    array by repeatedly re-randomizing
They remark that "studies before    chips from the initial array so
1969 tended to support III; those   that there is no relation between
since 1969 have tended to           focality and findability.  By this
discredit III" (loc. cit.)  They    means they have reinstated the
accept the finding of Kay and       earlier correlation in favor of I
McDaniel (1978) explaining uni-     with respect to color categories.
versal constraints in color         There remain problems of
classification in terms of the      interpretation and relevance to
neurophysiology of human color      the broader aims of the
vision, and discrediting III with   enterprise, as unfortunately often
respect to color.  They affirm of   happens in narrowly empirical
course that research into II and    work.
III is an open matter for domains

  Research of a broader sort has    practical techniques of reframing
gone on in many fields.  In social  and use of metaphor, and an
and cultural anthropology it is     understanding of human systems in
difficult to find anything that is  cybernetic terms, as therapy
absolutely irrelevant to the        (particularly the field of family
Whorf-Sapir hypothesis, though the  therapy).
latter can be made irrelevant to      Lastly, I must mention the
some forms of anthropological work  resurgence of feminism in all its
essentially by legislating a        many forms, especially as a
rather narrowly realist, anti-      scholarly concern in anthropology.
constructivist perspective for        I will describe in a little more
science.  Among clearly relevant    detail a new test of aspect I of
issues I name questions of sym-     the hypothesis devised by Kay and
bolism, including especially money  Kempton (1984) so as not to be so
and symbols of political and/or     restricted in interpretive scope
religious stature, magic and cargo  as the previous communicability/-
cults, studies of kinship systems   codability studies had been.
and their role in the construction  Speakers of Tarahumara (a Uto-
of interpersonal and social         Aztecan language of northern Mexi-
relations, and work in social cat-  co) lack the basic lexical
egories.  To this must be added     distinction between green and blue
work of more obviously linguistic   (as do various other languages,
nature, such as projection of       including Achumawi).  Aspect I of
prehistoric cultures from           the hypothesis predicts that
reconstructed proto-languages,      speakers of English will polarize
Studies of the bases of prejudice,  their perceptions near the border
of stereotyping, and of national    of green and blue, but speakers of
character in a more genuine sense   Tarahumara will not.3  In the
(as pioneered by Gregory Bateson)   first experiment, English-
... the list is seemingly endless.  speaker's judgements reflected the
  The fields of ethnolinguistics    division of green against blue in
and sociolinguistics, themselves    29 trials out of 30; Tarahumara
extremely broad and diversified     speakers responded even-handedly
(and themselves polarized rather    with 13 out of 24, extremely close
as the right and left hemispheres   to a 50-50 split, vindicating the
of the brain of the archetypal      hypothesis.
anthropological linguist), have       These experiments involve
obvious bearing on the hypothesis.  discriminating among three chips.
Hymes has urged a reinterpretation  In the first experiment, the
of the hypothesis, investigating    subject had an opportunity to
patterns of language use rather     assign a color name to the
than of language structure per se.  intermediate chip, and this may
  The perhaps contentiously named   have prejudiced the later step of
field of cognitive linguistics has  the experiment, when the alternate
a strong constructivist bent.       comparison was made.  The second
Work in psycholinguistics in        experiment made the comparisons
general often has clear bearing,    with the three chips adjacent in a
though the direction of interest    box with a sliding cover that
(and funding) to linguistic
universals has tended to obscure    ____________________
investigation of linguistic         3This phenomenon of polarization,
idiosyncrasies that might           by the way, is the reason speakers
correlate with cognitive            of English can disagree so
differences.                        strongly about the assignment of
  From Bateson's work on            marginal colors to either green or
communication and learning and in   blue.  A slight difference in
particular the discovery of the     idiosyncratic placement of the
double bind in relation to these    boundary makes a large difference
have developed lines of clinical    in categorization. This would
research that have developed        provide the basis of an
                                    interesting study relating to I.

covered the chip on one end.  In    the conventional categories of
the setup stage, the subject        one's shared language and culture.
agrees that the middle chip is        In formal linguistics, Zellig
greener with respect to one chip,   Harris and his co-workers have
and then that it is bluer than the  come full circle to the work on
other.  It thus has both names      information structures in
associated with it when the         discourse that opened the whole
subject is invited to alternate     field of transformational grammar.
views as often as desired, and      Harris, Ryckman, Gottfried et al.
judge which difference is greater.  The Form of Information in Science
In this experiment the              (1990) develops a representation
polarization effect disappears.     of the information immanent in a
  This accords with an              body of texts written over a span
interpretation by categorization    of years in the history of a sub-
(experiment 1) versus an            field of a science (immunology).
interpretation by discrimination    Changes in this structure
(experiment 2).  An exact parallel  correlate transparently with
could be made with the fact that    historically well-documented
people can discriminate             changes and developmental stages
differences between sounds with     of the science during that period,
indeterminate fineness              although the structure was deter-
(phonetics), but discriminate       mined by clearly defined formal
relevant differences that make a    means and without reference to any
difference in small numbers of      knowledge of that historical
categories (phonemes, contrasts,    context.  In this way, they have
distinctions) and displaying        demonstrated strongly that
characteristic polarization         structures found in the sub-
effects at the boundaries.  A       language of that science (and not
culturally/linguistically           imposed a priori on it) correlate
determined contrast can be re-      on the one hand with aspects of
peated, a difference requiring      the social reality of the science
perceptual discrimination can only  and on the other with the
be imitated.                        structure of the real-world domain
  Kay and Kempton interpret these   which is the concern of that sci-
findings as disconfirming what      ence.
they call radical linguistic          The latter correlation is
determinism, in which "human        reflexive, however, in the sense
beings ... are very much at the     that, as the structure changed, it
mercy of the particular language"   (and the understanding of the
(Sapir, quoted previously).  Be-    scientists writing the original
cause the polarization associated   research reports on which the
with naming can be made to dis-     analysis was done) over time came
appear simply by not naming, we     into closer conformity with a
are not hopelessly at the mercy of  reality whose nature was in
our language.  To this I would add  process of being discovered.
that it is difficult to do many     Before that change and that
sorts of things cooperatively with  concurrent discovery, certain
other human beings or with social   characteristics of reality could
consequence and recognition         not be stated or thought;
without employing the categories    afterward, they could.  But the
inherent in language.  The excep-   discovery and the change in
tions, it seems to me, are in the   structure were simultaneous
realms of art, of religion, of      (though of course the writing down
play and creativity.  These are     for publication was not).  No
the domain of the pleroma in        better confirmation of Sapir's
Bateson's terms, the realm of       intuition of the essential unity
cybernetic explanation, as opposed
to the creatura, the realm of
forces and impacts dealt with in

of language and thought could be    to come to recognize and un-
offered by one of his students.4    derstand, and not possible to
  To illustrate this point          communicate; she claims that with
further, I should like to adduce a  the proposed new terminology it
recent contribution to the          is.5
enormous literature in the study      Thus, while providing an
of kinship categories, always a     illustration of Whorfian effects
favorite topic in anthropological   within a sub-field of a science,
linguistics.  Wierzbicka, in        she proposes to overcome such
Semantics and the interpretation    effects by devising a perfect
of cultures:  the meaning of        metalanguage for that sub-field.
'alternate generations' devices in  Since the sub-field concerns an
Australian languages, proposes a    area that is by nature a matter of
new set of metalanguage terms for   social convention and so in social
discussing the alternate sets of    reality rather than physical
pronouns used in many Australian    reality (to make that Durckheimian
languages.  She urges that the      distinction again), she may be
terminology of "generation          able to get away with it.  I do
harmony" and "disharmony" that has  not doubt the creativity of human
become traditional in anthropology
is arcane and psychologically ar-   ____________________
bitrary, does not capture native    5This is part of Wierzbicka's
speakers' meaning and does not      ongoing work on natural language
make that meaning accessible to     semantics based, ultimately, on a
people from other cultures, and     proposed set of universal semantic
claims that her new terminology     primitives, including:  I, you,
provides a better fit.  This work   this, someone, something, want,
illustrates a Whorfian effect in    don't want, say, think of,
the sub-language of a spe-          imagine, know, become, part,
cialization within the science of   place, and world (Wierzbicka,
anthropology.  With the             Semantic Primitives (1972), Lingua
traditional terminology, aspects    Mentalis (1980).  Be it noted that
of aborigine culture are difficult  Harris denies there can be a lin-
                                    gua mentalis or any metalanguage
____________________                external to natural language.  For
4The confirmation is equivocal,     one thing, were there such one
however, since the work clearly     would need to account for the
demonstrates (as Harris stated at   grammar and semantics of that
the end of Mathematical Structures  metalanguage, and off we go in an
of Language (Wiley, 1968)) that     infinite regress of grammatical
language is not identical with      and semantic metalanguages.  For
thought but instead provides a      another, Harris has demonstrated
rather rigid channel for thought.   that the information structures
This corresponds precisely to the   immanent in texts account
observation above that the          precisely for the information that
discovery and the language for      the texts report, so that, like
talking about it co-evolved.  By    LaPlace, he has no need for this
using this term I refer             additional hypothesis.  But
specifically to the common          Wierzbicka's proposal here,
misperception regarding biological  however it may be guided by her
evolution that e.g. eohippus        broader theoretical interests,
evolved into the horse in response  concerns only a sub-language of
to environmental changes, when one  English serving as metalanguage
must instead acknowledge eohippus   for a sub-field of anthropology,
and its pre-grasslands environment  and as such is unobjectionable.
co-evolved into the horse and its   The semantics of this sub-language
grasslands environment.  Synec-     inhere in its informational
doche is fallacious in both cases.  structures, per Harris, rather
The claim, then, is of the unity,   than in its use of vocabulary from
but not identity of language and    a supposedly universal lingua
thought.                            mentalis.

cultures, however, and would build  hypothesis, we tested only one
in means for the sub-language to    question:  Do the lexical
evolve.                             categories of a language affect
  An abiding interest of Harris,    non-linguistic perceptions of its
as of his teacher Sapir, has been   speakers to a non-trivial extent?
the question of refinements and     (P. Kay & W. Kempton, "What is the
possibly extensions of natural      Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis?", American
language that foster international  Anthropologist, vol 86, No. 1,
scientific communication.  In his   March 1984.)
analysis, language-particular         Considering the complexities of
characteristics due to the          prior research efforts, our
reduction system (extended morpho-  primary experiment was simple:
phonemics) of one language or       Present three color chips (call
another are partitioned from        them A, B, C) to speakers of two
operator-argument structures that   languages, such that colors A and
`carry' information, which are      B are slightly more different in
remarkably uniform from one lan-    terms of (universal) human visual
guage to another.  This uniformity  discriminability, whereas B and C
becomes very close indeed in the    have a linguistic boundary
grammar of a science sub-language,  separating them in one language
where classifications and           (English) but not the other
selection restrictions are much     (Tarahumara, a Uto-Aztecan lan-
more closely constrained than in    guage).  As noted earlier, the
other domains.  But even in         English speakers chose C as most
nontechnical domains Harris has a   different, whereas the Tarahumara
great deal to say about linguistic  chose A or split evenly (there
universals6, and about the          were actually eight chips and four
distinctions between what is        sets of relevant triads).
universal in language and culture     I'll add a couple of points of
and what is idiosyncratic and       interest that were either buried
therefore pertinent to the Whorf-   in that article, or have not
Sapir Hypothesis.                   appeared in print.  First, as the
__________________________________  speaker of a language subject to
             ________               this perceptual effect, I would
                                    like to report that it is
[One of the researchers on color    dramatic, even shocking.  I
terms mentioned above then posted   administered the tests to
some additional notes on his        informants in Chihuahua.  I was so
research:]                          bewildered by their responses that
                                    I had trouble continuing the first
Willett Kempton                     few tests, and I had no idea
<willett@Princeton.EDU>:            whether or not they were answering
                                    randomly.  In subsequent analysis
  I'm a coauthor of the Kay and     it was clear that they were
Kempton study discussed in several  answering exactly as would be pre-
earlier messages.  (I don't follow  dicted by human visual discrim-
this newsgroup regularly, but a     inability, but quite unlike the
colleague passed on the thread.)    English informants.
As pointed out earlier, from the      An informal, and unreported,
tangled cluster of hypotheses       check of our results was more
referred to as the Sapir-Whorf      subjective:  I showed some of the
                                    crucial triads to other English
____________________                speakers, including some who had
6See e.g. Language and Information  major commitments in print to not
(Columbia 1989) and A Theory of     finding Whorfian effects for color
Language and Information (Oxford,   (several of the latter type of
1990), which is a more              informants were available on the
philosophical companion volume to   Berkeley campus, where Kay and I
A Grammar of English on             were).  All reported seeing the
Mathematical Principles (Wiley

same effects.  We tried various     powerful conversion experience
games with each other and           unlike anything I've experienced
ourselves like "We know English     in my scientific career.  Perhaps
calls these two green and that one  this all just goes to affirm
blue, but just looking it them,     Seguin's earlier quote, as
which one LOOKS most different?"    applying to us as both natives and
No way, the blue one was REALLY a   as theorists:
LOT more different.  Again, the
Tarahumara, lacking a lexical         "We have met the natives whose
boundary among these colors,          language filters the world - and
picked "correctly" with ease and      they are us."
in overwhelming numbers.  The
article includes the Munsell chip   __________________________________
numbers, so anyone can look them
up and try this on themselves.      
  Some of the triads which crossed  [One linguist on Linguist List
hue and brightness were truly       added comments to those of Bruce
unbelievable, as it was             Nevin, specifically noting that
perceptually OBVIOUS to us English  Sapir and Whorf did not
speakers which one was the most     necessarily believe in the 'Sapir-
different, yet all the visual       Whorf Hypothesis'.  As noted in
discriminability data were against  JL16, Alexis Manaster-Ramer has
us.  (The article did not mention   become interested in potential
the hue/brightness crossovers for   linguistics research applications
the sake of simplifying the         for Lojban.  This interest derived
argument in print.)                 in part as a result of these dis-
  Our second experiment, like the   cussions.]
original visual discrimination      
experiments, showed only two chips  Alexis Manaster-Ramer writes
at a time.  We additionally made    <Alexis_Manaster_Ramer@MTS.CC.WAYN
it difficult to use the lexical     E.EDU>:
categories.  And we got visual        In several recent messages there
discrimination-based results, even  are references to Whorf or Sapir
from English speakers.  So there    and Whorf together as having
are ways to overcome our lin-       originated the idea of "human
guistic blinders.  (Which we knew   thinking patterns being relative
already, or the original visual     to the inventory of the available
discriminability work could not     language system" (to quote one
have been done in the first         contributor).  However, like the
place.)  I don't feel that the      story of the Eskimo words for
differences across these tasks was  snow, this story about Whorf and
adequately explored, and represent  Sapir is not factually correct.
a golden opportunity for a            First of all, it was Sapir who
research project or thesis.         fought against such simplistic
  I didn't expect to find this.     language-thought claims of earlier
The experiment was a minor piggy-   scholars such as Uhlenbeck (one of
back on another project.  I         the guys who claimed that certain
believed the literature and the     "primitive" folks don't have the
distinguished scientists who told   same perception of action as we do
me in advance that we wouldn't      because they speak ergative lan-
find anything interesting.  The     guages and that some of them also
experiment was going to be dropped  have trouble distinguishing
from the field research, saved by   between themselves and their body
a conversation at a wine party      parts because they speak languages
with a "naive" sociologist (Paul    in which possessors of subjects or
Attewell) who had read Whorf but    objects are sometimes treated as
not the later refutations.          subjects and objects).
  A simple experiment, clear data,    Second, it is true that Whorf
and seeing the Whorfian effect      took for granted (as did almost
with our own eyes:  It was a        everybody else at the time) the

idea that the structure of a        in fact to support the Un-Sapir-
language can be taken literally as  Whorf hypothesis.  However, it
giving the underlying ontology      should be noted that these results
(not that it causes it, mind you,   do NOT show a causal relation
but that it does reveal it).  We    going from language to cognition.
know for example that Whorf was     Indeed, the often-noted fact that
much impressed with the claims (I   color terminologies seem to become
forget whose at the moment) that    more and more complex as the
Chinese has no relative clauses,    speakers' material culture becomes
only things that were rendered as   more and more complex would argue
Jack build-ish house (i.e., the     for precisely the opposite caus-
house that Jack built).             ality:  People find they need to
  Third, all of Whorf's claims      distinguish more colors because of
about Hopi are quite explicitly of  material, nonlinguistic reasons,
this same variety:  He does not     and then devise the necessary
assert that the structure of the    linguistic means to formalize the
language causes the world view,     distinctions.
merely that it reveals it.  He        I would also like to address
also does not claim this            briefly the question of a
connection between the ontology     connection with Humboldt.  As I
and the language to be a new idea.  noted in my first message on the
He presupposes it.  That is a big   subject of Whorf, Whorf (like most
difference, of course, because      of his contemporaries) PRESUPPOSED
Whorf is often accused of claiming  the existence of a connection be-
such a connection without giving    tween language and cognition, a
any independent evidence about the  connection which Humboldt was one
ontology.  But in fact he did not   of the first (if not the first) to
make any such claims, he merely     make.  The issue is very simple,
assumed that there was such a       really.  Before Humboldt and
connection because everybody        others like him, the standard way
around him assumed it also.  His    of describing languages was in
contribution (as he saw it) was     terms of how they would be glossed
entirely different:  it was to      in some Western metalanguage like
show that the way people view       Latin or Spanish.  This is why
time, events, quantities, etc.,     people were perfectly happy to
can be culture- and hence lan-      describe ergative constructions
guage-specific.                     (in e.g. Greenlandic) or "active"
  What I find particularly          ones (e.g., in Huron and Guarani,
surprising about the need to re-    see Mithun's recent Language ar-
iterate all this is that the        ticle) without noticing anything
relevant writings of Whorf's are    odd.  They would just say that the
all reprinted in a widely           subject and the verb had different
available collection, and that      forms in transitive as opposed to
Sapir's writings are hardly         intransitive constructions.
obscure either.                     People like Humboldt came up with
                                    the revolutionary idea of de-
  _____________________________     scribing languages in their own
                                    terms, which meant that the
                                    superficial patterns of each lan-
  At another point, Alexis also     guage had to be taken at face
wrote:                              value.
                                      Hence, Humboldt's argument that
  I am very grateful to those who   Malayo-Polynesian verbs are really
have written in to note that the    nouns, for example.  Or later
so-called Sapir-Whorf hypothesis    arguments by various people that
was NOT what Whorf (or a fortiori   ergatives are really passives (or
Sapir) maintained.  And also to     other things).  But that then made
those who have written in           it imperative to explain why
reminding us of the results, such   exotic peoples say things that we
the Berlin and Kay ones, that seem

would not, e.g., why do they use    a mistaken one" and he cites some
"nouns" instead of verbs or         arguments.
"passives" instead of actives.        Thus, I believe that Whorf made
And the explanation, of course,     a clear distinction between
was that they THINK differently     culture (behavior) and language,
from us as well.  Whorf, like       but he did not make such a
almost all his contemporaries, was  distinction between language and
steeped in this way of thinking,    thought.  As I said before, he
but certainly did not originate     presupposed as did almost everyone
it.  As I noted before, his point   else at the time that if people
to show just HOW EXOTIC languages   speak a certain way then that
could get, and this he tried to do  reflects the way they think.  He
by discussing the Hopi treatment    took it for granted for example
of time, events, and quantities.    that if the Hopis pluralize the
    __________________________      word for cloud (oomaw) the way
                                    that they normally pluralize
Alexis provided evidence for his    animate nouns, then they must
claims in the following:            think of the clouds as animate.
                                      Of course, this view is naive,
  Since many of the readers of      as Joseph Greenberg pointed out in
LINGUIST are from Missouri, I       the fifties, since languages make
thought I would provide some        all sorts of arbitrary
evidence for my recent assertions   distinctions (or fail arbitrarily
that Whorf's position has been      to make them in certain
widely misunderstood.               environments) without any apparent
  In "The relation of habitual      conceptual consequences.
thought and behavior to language",    Essentially, I think the
Whorf says among other things:      connection works one way, namely,
                                    if a language makes a distinction
  "That portion of the whole        which cannot be described in
  investigation here to be re-      purely structural terms, then we
  ported may be summed up in two    must ascribe to the speakers the
  questions:  (1) Are our concepts  ability to perceive or imagine or
  of 'time', 'space', and 'matter'  whatever the corresponding
  given in substantially the same   distinction in the world.  Thus,
  form by experience to all men,    when Greenberg points out that
  or are they in part conditioned   nothing important hinges on the
  by the structure of particular    fact that the French use an
  languages?  (2) Are there trace-  ordinal in Napoleon Premier but a
  able affinities between (a)       cardinal in Napolean Deux, that's
  cultural and behavioral norms     OK, because the choice here can be
  and (b) large-scale linguistic    made w/o reference to the world.
  patterns?  (I should be the last  The rule is purely linguistic.
  to pretend that there is          And, of course, this could be the
  anything so definite as "a        case with the Hopi word for cloud
  correlation" between culture and  and its plural.
  language, and especially between    On the other hand, if we find
  ethnological rubrics such as      that speakers of Polish
  'agricultural, hunting', etc.,    systematically use a different
  and linguistic ones like          genitive ending for place-names in
  'inflected', 'synthetic', or      Poland (and other Slavic
  'isolating'."                     countries) than they do for other
                                    place-names, and do so PRO-
  In a footnote on the same page    DUCTIVELY, then it IS reasonable
(p. 139 of the Language, Thought,   to conclude that they are capable
and Reality book), he says em-      of a conceptual distinction
phatically that "The idea of        between Poland (or Slavdom) and
"correlation" between language and  the rest of the world.
culture, in the generally accepted
sense of correlation, is certainly

  The distinction between these     was quite typical for the time
two kinds of cases is what seems    (though not for the 17 or the 18th
not to have been entirely clear to  century).
Whorf, and that, as far as I can    _________________________________
see, is where he came to sometimes  
came to grief.                      Finally Alexis wrote, in a fourth
  It is also quite clear that he    posting:
was not claiming any originality
about the relation of language and    Setting aside for the moment the
thought per se, rather he was       question of why so many people
trying to show just how different   continue to insist on attributing
the language/thought of one         to Whorf and Sapir views they did
culture could be from that of an-   not hold (or at least did not ex-
other in the case of such basic     press), I would like to say
ideas as that of time, although he  something about the results which
points out (p 158) that there is    are claimed to support the
not a comparable difference be-     hypothesis that language and non-
tween Hopi and Standard Average     linguistic behavior (behavior, for
European regarding space.           short) exhibit certain close
  As to culture, Whorf was          connections (which people seem to
faithfully following Sapir in       want to interpret as involving
claiming that there is no more      causality going from language to
than an "affinity" between          behavior).
language and culture, but no          (1) Even if we find certain
"correlations or diagnostic cor-    correlations between language
respondences" (p 159).  For, as I   structure and patterns of
noted earlier, Sapir was one of     behavior, this does NOT (as I
the staunchest critics of the late  think I noted earlier) indicate
19th century and early 20th         the direction of causality (as
century linguists who propounded    indeed Whorf himself noted at one
such theories as the "passivity"    point).  The color terminology
of peoples whose languages use the  business shows, if anything, that
ergative constructions, and such    the complexity of a color
like drivel.                        terminology seems to depend on the
  Incidentally, much of what I      complexity of the culture, there
have said about Whorf's intent in   being, for example, no industrial
bringing the Hopi vs. the SAE       or post-industrial cultures whose
treatment of time and matter can    languages use two or three color
also be said about Sapir's work on  terms.  There has also been specu-
the psychological reality of        lation about the fact that the
phonemes.  Today, we emphasize the  lateness of terms for 'blue' may
psychological reality part, but     be connected with the relative
actually in his time, the novelty   scarcity of blue objects (other
was the phoneme.  Claims about      than the ubiquitous sky) in
psychological reality about in the  nature.
second half of the 19th century       This would suggest very strongly
and later (and we find them in all  that the linguistic pattern comes
of Sapir's as well as Bloomfield's  second, as a reflection of a cul-
early writings).  The idea of the   ture's need to make certain
psychological vs. the grammatical   distinctions.
subject after all originated in       (2) All the studies that claim
that period.  And, to take one      to show a connection between
example our of thousands, when      language and behavior that I have
Platt wrote in the 1870's that the  seen mentioned seem to deal with
Urdu speakers perceive certain      two or at any rate a small number
constructions in their language as  of languages, e.g., Tarahumara and
active even though they look        English.  Likewise, I have seen
passive (these are, of course,      studies by Alexander Guiora on
ergatives again!), he was           Hebrew and English and other such
expressing himself in a way which   small sets, which I don't think

have been cited on LINGUIST so        From this end of your postings,
far. Yet, since the claim being     I'd say that you've made your case
tested is correlation between       that the two did not believe in
linguistic structure and nonlin-    'their' hypothesis, at least
guistic behavior, the relevant      insofar as it is generally
population is languages (not        understood by others.
individual speakers), and you
cannot seriously talk about           (which people seem to want to
correlations for populations of       interpret as involving causality
two (or three or whatever small       going from language to
number is involved).  What we         behavior).
require is a study involving a
dozen or a hundred languages that     I agree that this is not
have the Tarahumara color system    evidenced in the writings.  I note
and a dozen or a hundred that have  by the way that Jim Brown, who
the English one before we can say   invented Loglan, also cites F. S.
anything at all about correlations  C. Northrop (1946) The Meeting of
and things.                         East and West as proposing a
  Having said this, I would         cultural effect of language inde-
predict that we will find such      pendently of the presumed
correlations but I would also       interpretation of S and W, but he
predict that at least some of them  never cites quotes.  I also have
will turn out to have the opposite  read a book in the 80s, The
causality from that suggested (or   Alphabet Effect, by a follower of
a more complex one than either of   McLuhan, that claims cultural ef-
the simple unidirectional ones).    fects from orthography.  Certainly
  Is there anybody out there who    the concept "the medium is the
would like to collaborate on        message" significantly underlies
putting together such a mass        most interpretations of the SWH.
cross-linguistic study?             Perhaps it should be call the
                                    SWMcH %^).
     _______________________          I do not know where John Carroll
                                    fits in the historical setting of
                                    the SWH, whether he knew Whorf or
  Lojbab responded privately to     Sapir, etc.  Carroll WAS involved
Alexis's last message with the      in Jim Brown's formulation of Log-
following:                          lan throughout the 60s and 70s,
                                    and presumably found Brown's
You write:                          assertions to not be inconsistent
                                    with his own writings on SWH.  So
  Setting aside for the moment the  I would ask you whether you
  question of why so many people    believe that Carroll has said
  continue to insist on             anything (presumably in his
  attributing to Whorf and Sapir    comments on the collection of
  views they did not hold (or at    Whorf's essays or elsewhere) that
  least did not express) ...        misinterprets those writings?
                                    Although he is retired, I could
  Note that when we talk about the  ask Carroll to respond.  It seems
Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis in Lojban    that the issue is ripe for such
writings, we are using the common   discussion.
name for the hypothesis, not in
particular attributing the            (1) Even if we find certain
formulation of that hypothesis        correlations between language
that we use to either Sapir or        structure and patterns of
Whorf.  That formulation is of        behavior, this does NOT (as I
course more complex than simple       think I noted earlier) indicate
'cultural relativism', and there      the direction of causality (as
seems to be no other good name,       indeed Whorf himself noted at
much less one that is known to        one point).

  Agreed.  One reason we are        direction of response should be
working very hard on Lojban before  easy to measure.
proposing a specific test is that
we want to be able to predict a       Is there anybody out there who
causal effect of language that is     would like to collaborate on
clearly not part of the cultural      putting together such a mass
milieu.  The drastic differences      cross-linguistic study?
between Lojban and natural
languages make it more likely that    I obviously would be interested
we can identify a way to determine  (especially if funding can be
both a relation and a causal        obtained) but note that I can't
effect, if one exists.  This may    contribute much in understanding
then tell us how to look for con-   of the other languages.  I also
firming data in the natural lan-    would like to see such a study,
guages.                             even if it must include colors due
                                    to the popular associations of
  The color terminology business    colors with SWH, find one or two
  shows, if anything, that the      other areas of language that are
  complexity of a color             more believably independent of
  terminology seems to depend on    biology.  I've heard that kinship
  the complexity of the culture,    terms is another area of com-
  there being, for example, no      parison that might be considered.
  industrial or post-industrial     My own preference would be an
  cultures whose languages use two  analysis of words for emotions,
  or three color terms.  There has  emotional expressions, and
  also been speculation about the   linguistic and para-linguistic
  fact that the lateness of terms   ways of expressing emotions, as
  for 'blue' may be connected with  well as perhaps on time and
  the relative scarcity of blue     spatial relations  (e.g. do
  objects (other than the ubiq-     languages with 2 distinctions of
  uitous sky) in nature.            distance in demonstratives this/-
                                    that have any correlations in
  I think that color terminology    culture not found in those having
is the worst place to look for a    three this/that/that yonder?)
SW effect, since it seems patently
obvious that color recognition is     Essentially, I think the
going to be dominated by the basic    connection works one way,
biological process of recognizing     namely, if a language makes a
color which would mask more subtle    distinction which cannot be
linguistic effects.  Indeed, if       described in purely structural
one presumes that biology was         terms, then we must ascribe to
directed by evolutionary              the speakers the ability to
requirements, there may be some       perceive or imagine or whatever
environmental reason that we are      the corresponding distinction in
not aware of that causes certain      the world.  Thus, when Greenberg
colors to seem more basic or          points out that nothing
important than others.                important hinges on the fact
                                      that the French use an ordinal
  This would suggest very strongly    in Napoleon Premier but a
  that the linguistic pattern         cardinal in Napolean Deux,
  comes second, as a reflection of    that's OK, because the choice
  a culture's need to make certain    here can be made w/o reference
  distinctions.                       to the world.  The rule is
                                      purely linguistic.  And, of
  I agree that this also occurs in    course, this could be the case
language, and in constructing new     with the Hopi word for cloud and
artificial languages, especially a    its plural. On the other hand,
language like Lojban where nonce      if we find that speakers of
new word creation is easy and         Polish systematically use a
favored, the scope of this

  different genitive ending for     mean the only contribution of his)
  place-names in Poland (and other  I know on this subject).  Let me
  Slavic countries) than they do    reemphasize:  Whorf and Sapir did
  for other place-names, and do so  NOT argue for a correlation
  productively, then it is          between linguistic and
  reasonable to conclude that they  nonlinguistic behavior (although
  are capable of a conceptual       they saw connections) and they
  distinction between Poland (or    simply did not see the question of
  Slavdom) and the rest of the      a correlation between language and
  world.                            thought in the way that we do.
                                    This is NOT to say that, like in
  This sounds like you would see    the case of language and non-
value in finding out what types of  linguistic behavior, they held
productive distinctions are made    there was no correlation. Rather,
in an artificial language where     they did not see clearly that
structure and concept are strongly  there was anything to correlate,
separated and it is relatively      since they assumed that language
easy to recognize native language   and thought go hand-in-hand.  And
reflections (pollutions?) because   this they almost certainly did
of the drastic structural differ-   because the same idea was
ences.  The obvious question is     generally accepted at the time.
where you would look for such       So, I would not say that Sapir and
distinctions.                       Whorf did not believe in the
  Lojban is only one language, but  Sapir-Whorf hypothesis.  Rather
perhaps we might detect             they did not consider it a
correlations between native         hypothesis.
language features and con-            ______________________________
ceptualization in Lojban when
those people learn Lojban.  Do      [Note:  We will endeavor to pass
people with AN structures lose      along to the respective authors
that pattern in a language where    any comments on the above
the AN distinction is blurred (I    discussions that readers may send
find myself in Lojban often ex-     us.]
pressing things in the form of        ______________________________
house-big, as well as big-house,
but would not presume to try to       During the course of the
find any correlations yet?)  My     discussion of the Sapir-Whorf
wife and I have devised several     Discussion, several references
possible experiments related to     were mentioned, which can be added
this concept, but have long fig-    to bibliographies on Sapir-Whorf,
ured that it will be a while        such as those which have appeared
before there's an opportunity to    in previous issues of ju'i
even do a detailed plan, much less  lobypli.  I've collected these
conduct the experiments.            together, sometimes including the
                                    comments of the person who
__________________________________  mentioned the work:
                                      John Lucy ("Whorf's view of the
                                    linguistic mediation of thought,"
Alexis responded:                   in Semiotic Mediation, ed. by
                                    Elizabeth Mertz & Richard
  Thank you for your extensive and  Parmentier, Academic P, 1985).
thoughtful responses.  ... I would
love to be in touch with Carroll.     Alan Rumsey's (1990) paper,
He certainly knew Whorf, but is     "Wording, Meaning, and Linguistic
not a linguist.  How he interprets  Ideology," American Anthropologist
Whorf is not always clear from his  92:346-361, for an excellent
intro to Whorf's selected writings  discussion of where Whorfianism
(which is his only contribution (I  works.

  There's a nice discussion by        Garro, Linda.  1986.  Language,
Roger Brown of the Brown &          memory, and focality:  A
Lenneberg work in his old book      reexamination.  American
Words & Things, in 2 different      Anthropologist 88:128-136.
chapters separated by another
chapter.  There is one article I      Another attempt at an empirical
know of that provides some          test is Alfred Bloom's book The
evidence for the strong version of  Linguistic Shaping of Thought.  He
the hypothesis, by Carroll &        found that Chinese speakers had
Casagrande on object                more difficulty comprehending a
classification by Navaho vs.        text full of counterfactual
Boston suburban kids. It's in an    conditionals than English
early psycholinguistics anthology   speakers, and attributed this to
(Saporta's??)                       the lack of explicit coding of
                                    counterfactuals in Chinese.
  Berlin & Kay's (1969) study of    However, Terry Au and Lisa Garbern
color-term universals was indeed a  Liu in Cognition (1985?)
real breakthrough, although I also  replicated the experiment trying
believe again that it attacked      to avoid cultural bias, and found
what Whorf did not maintain, but    no significant difference.
rather what was imputed to Whorf.
However, there has been work since    A more recent reference on Whorf
then which has examined Berlin &    and color terms is a paper by Paul
Kay (1969) closely, and has come    Kay and Willet Kempton called What
up with some pretty damning         is the Sapir Whorf hypothesis? in
evaluations.  One of the main       American Anthropologist vol. 86,
problems with the study is the      1984.
inaccurate data that it used (but
then again Whorf has been shown to    Brown, R. L. (1967). Wilhelm Von
have misunderstood the structure    Humboldt's Conception of
of Hopi), and the criteria used in  Linguistic Relativity.  The Hague:
determining when a color term is    Mouton.
basic and when it's not, and when
a color is focal or not.  Chapter     Rheingold, H. (1988). They Have
4 of Geoffrey Sampson's (1980)      A Word For It, Los Angeles: Jeremy
School of Linguistics, (Stanford    P. Tarcher, Inc.
University Press) is one reference
that comes to mind.                   Saporta, S. (1960) (Editor)
  There are also pretty careful     Psycholinguistics : A book or
experimental studies on the         readings,  Holt Rinehart.
recognition of and memory for
color terms which have come out in    Newcombe, etc. ?? (1958??)
favor of both Whorfian relativism   (Editors)  Readings in Social
and determinism.  See:              Psychology.
  Lucy, John and Richard Shweder.
1979.  Whorf and his critics:         Vygotsky, Language and Thought
Linguistic and nonlinguistic
influences on color memory.           Kuhn, T. (1960?),  Structure of
American Anthropologist 81:581-     Scientific Revolutions (2nd
615.                                Edit.).
  Lucy, John and Richard Shweder.
1988.  The effect of incidental       Aarsleff, H. (1982). From Locke
conversation on memory for focal    to Saussure. Minneapolis:
colors. American Anthropologist     University of Minnesota Press.
  The first paper was critiqued by    G. Pullam's book, The Great
Linda Garro (reference below), and  Eskimo Vocabulary Hoax, essays by
the second paper is an answer to    Sir William Jones and by W. D.
Garro:                              Whitney, Carter and Nash's Seeing
                                    Through Language, Coupland's

Styles of Discourse, and            Finnish Kalevala, the sagas of the
Freeborn's Varieties of English,    Nordic nations, and the myths of
and works by philosophers such as   the Greeks, were not written by
Austin, Searle, Grice, and Stal-    one person at one time.  (Indeed,
naker.                              these stories and poems were not
                                    originally written, but probably
  Helmut Gipper, whose office       transmitted for centuries as oral
sported an oversized poster of      tradition.)  Instead, these are
Einstein formulated an explicit     collections of stories with a
link between the principle of       more-or-less common context.
relativity in theoretical physics     But as with Chaucer and
and a similar principle in          Shakespeare, these collections are
linguistics (Helmut Gipper, Gibt    more than stories; they are among
es ein sprachliches Rela-           the oldest works in their
tivitaetsprinzip?:  Untersuchungen  respective languages and hence
zur Sapir-Whorf-Hypothese, Fischer  serve to define the earliest
1972).                              memory for most speakers of the
                                    language: of how the language was
   The Lojban Kalevala Project      at its earliest known formation.
                                      As a modern example of how
  A most exciting project has       collective authorship in a common
commenced, starting at the first    context can work, the successful
LogFest this year, crystallizing    science fiction/fantasy series
at the second one, and evolving     Wild Cards edited by George R. R.
thereafter on Lojban List.          Martin, shows how people can write
  This project is an attempt to     such stories using each other's
develop a work of coherent          characters as well as a common
original Lojban literature, one     context (later volumes of the
which would have the formative and  series show how editing can weave
perhaps normative effects on the    stories written by many indi-
language and its style that         viduals into a seamless novel
various epic works have had on the  which bears the stylistic elements
languages that they were written    of the contributors, but in a way
in.                                 where you cannot clearly tell what
  For several years, I've used a    pieces were written by which
reference to Chaucer and his        authors).
Canterbury Tales in describing the    Lojban would be better off with
context for such a project          such a body of stories (indeed it
(Chaucer's work effectively         would become, in a sense, alive,
defined the change from the era of  at that point), and would be
'Old English' to what is now        better served by having the
called 'Middle English), though     stories written by a collective
I've also mentioned Shakespeare     authorship composed of people from
(whose plays similarly gave birth   as broad a cultural spectrum as
to Modern English) in the same      possible.
context.                              At the August LogFest, a concept
  These might serve as good         for such a project was developed,
exemplars of the goal of such a     along with a basis or methodology
project: to make the Lojban         for common authorship.  Lojbab
language come 'alive', but it is    assembled the concept into a
unlikely and probably undesirable   proposal, and posted it to Lojban
for one single author in one        List, getting several people to
single work to set the norms for    express active interest.
Lojban.  We are trying to avoid       The project since has taken off
embedding the ideas of only one     on its own, though possibly in
person or of only one culture as    some ways changing from what was
the basis of Lojban.                originally envisioned at LogFest.
  Thus, when I spotted a better     Lojbab has pretty much stayed out
exemplar, I started using it.  The  of the discussion since then,
                                    except to try to point out the in-

terests of people who had no        - First, Veijo Vilva, a Finnish
access to the computer networks,    Lojbanist who has taken a
and hence could not defend their    leadership role in the project,
own interests.  This must be a      briefly summarizes what he sees
project of the community, and not   the project to be, its current
his project.                        status, and where he thinks it
  The people discussing the         should go in the future.
project, have chosen to use more    - Then follows a longer
prosaic names that reflect the      compendium, assembled by Veijo
specifics of the effort, rather     (with some additions by Lojbab),
than the paradigmatic goals.  We    that embodies the essential
will let the project continue with  discussions that have taken place
the several names it has acquired,  in the last several months.
remembering the multi-authored,     - Then follows the first
multi-faceted, multi-cultural       submissions for a collection of
spirit in which it is envisioned.   English language texts written by
  We want all of you who might be   people to serve as descriptions of
interested in this project to       the common context for the
speak up.  Now!  You do not need    writings of the project.  These
to be a original, creative, writer  may serve as examples of what we'd
- another hallmark of these         like to see from people proposing
ancient collections is that many    additional descriptions of
of their stories are retellings of  characters or setting (though
earlier legends and tales,          please don't feel that you have to
sometimes of a different culture    match the sometimes elaborate
(examples: some scholars think      style of these writings).
that the Bible story of Noah and    - Mingled with the English texts
the flood is a retelling of an      (in the order in which they were
earlier story, that of Gilgamesh,   originally posted, since some of
Shakespeare's Julius Caesar was     the stories rely on 'earlier'
obviously built on the legends      texts for information, or react to
that the Romans evolved about that  things mentioned in the earlier
leader, and most of his other       texts) are the most recent
plays had plots plagiarized from    revisions of all Lojban writings
other plays of the Middle Ages -    written by people in conjunction
plays since forgotten because they  with this phase of the project.
did not have the literary power     Some of these writings have been
and influence of Shakespeare.)      attempts to help develop the
  But you don't need to be a        common context in Lojban rather
Shakespeare either in quality or    than in English, some experiments
in volume of work, in order to      in trying to write within the
make a contribution.  You just      context as it is known, and of
need to do the best you can on a    course, all are attempts by the
piece of the whole - a piece whose  authors to improve their own
size and nature you can determine,  Lojban abilities in the best way:
whether it be a paragraph, a poem,  by writing in the language.
a page, or a longer work.  Indeed,    Currently the goal is to define
there is some room for              the common context, and we want as
contribution from people who have-  many inputs as possible for this.
n't yet learned Lojban, in          As noted in the longer
contributing ideas for the common   discussions, we are looking for
setting.  (But we hope that most    text (in English, or in Lojban
people who participate will do so   with English translation for those
with the intention of eventually    who can't easily read Lojban text
writing some Lojban text in         yet) that a) further elaborates
contribution to the project.)       the common setting of the stories,
  The following several pages       a 'coffeehouse' that will be
define the state the project has    defined with rich enough detail
reached in the last few months.     that people can tie their stories
                                    into the common context by

referencing these hooks, and b) to  quarterly rate).  This may make
define the major common characters  the proposal moot, or may cause it
that can be used (so long as non-   to be a longer-term milestone that
destructively and consistently      will occur only when the Lojban
with the provided details) by any   community is large enough that
writer who wants to contribute.     people write enough text to
  We need you to act immediately    support a separate journal, and
and send us your ideas (on paper,   enough people are interested in
diskette, or via email).  JL18      reading such text to make a
(current deadline March 5) will     journal economically viable.
contain as many additional            Where this project goes after
writings and character              JL19 is up to the community.  A
descriptions, in either language,   separate publication may be spun
as we can fit.  We will hopefully   off.  Someone may choose to try to
have more character descriptions    edit the best writings into a
submitted than we intend to actual  publishable book.  Or ... - well,
use, in which case there will be a  you decide!
period of comment and voting until    Here's Veijo.
JL19 (current deadline June 5).
(Additional ideas and proposals     
may also be submitted for this        The Purpose of The Ckafybarja
issue, but they will be at a                     Project
handicap in any voting.)
  Hopefully by the time JL19 comes    The purpose of the project is to
out with the results of this        encourage people to create
voting, the dictionary will have    original Lojban stories which have
been published, and people will     the following common features:
have a common language definition     - as already stated the stories
with which do begin writing.  The   are original Lojban stories, not
extra 6 months and the large        translations from other languages;
volume of Lojban writings that        - they are closely connected
will hopefully be appearing will    with a coffeehouse which is
also help more people learn of      described in detail in a set of
enough of the language to be        English documentation available to
willing to try to write in the      all;
language.                             - the stories either take place
  There is a proposal for a         or are told in the Cafe.
separate publication to contain     
only Lojban writings.  As this        The proposed Cafe Newsletter
proposal evolved, it grew away      would widen the scope of material
from the concept of the Kalevala    eligible for publication and make
project, expanding to be a journal  it easier for the beginning Lojban
of in-Lojban writing.  The merits   writers to produce something
of this proposal are also for the   worthwhile.
community to decide, but I have     
taken this proposal more                         History
immediately to be a criticism of
the excessive backlog in getting      The project has gone through
Lojban text printed in ju'i loby-   several stages during the last few
pli, the relative infrequency of    months.  There were some
ju'i lobypli, and perhaps a sense   preliminary postings concerning
that text appearing in ju'i         the lack of Lojban text -
lobypli represents an over-         especially original text, not
centralized attitude of what the    translations from other languages.
language should be like.            It was noted that actually very
  I have thus taken action to       few people did produce Lojban text
change JL's editorial policy to     or use Lojban in communicating
reflect these implied criticisms    with other Lojbanists.  The ideas
(as well as get its publication     culminating in the project were
frequency up to the intended        formulated during the summer

LogFests and the ensuing            limbo and some are waiting comment
discussions on the net.             from the non-netters.
                                      The 'Kalevala' was quite soon
   The Lojban Canterbury Tales      dropped from the name of the
                                    project as there was no actual
  The first [1992] LogFest          reason for the reference.  I
formulated the idea of encouraging  proposed the name 'la jbotur'
people to write original Lojban     instead but it was never adopted
stories with some common features.  by anybody else.  The name of the
The basic idea was that there       Cafe was 'la *jbolaz' for a while
would be a place were people would  but this has turned out to be an
gather to tell stories to each      invalid form [hence marked with an
other like in the original          asterisk whenever it occurs
Canterbury Tales or in The          herein].
Decameron.  The Finnish national    
epic Kalevala was also mentioned              Controversies
as a possible source of ideas and
there were some discussions           When the Cafe Project proposal
concerning the possibilities.  The  (The Lojban Kalevala Project) was
parts of these conversations which  posted on the net there was some
affected the development of the     disagreement concerning various
Project are included in the         aspects of the plan.  The main
Papers.  The discussions were at a  reason for this was the fact that
very general level and nothing      none of the most active netters
concrete was done at this stage.    had participated in the initial
The name 'Kalevala' was used in     formulation.  Some of the ideas
the headers of most of the          presented on the net contradicted
postings which gave rise to the     the original plan so some non-
first name of the project proper.   netters might feel that the very
                                    active netters were trying to
  The Lojban Kalevala Project ->    dominate.  The views of the
      The Ckafybarja Project        netters (or of the most vocal of
                                    them) are being presented to non-
  At the second LogFest the Cafe    netters in JL17; there has been no
idea was adopted and also the idea  response yet.  The conversation on
of having a detailed description    the net has quieted down.
of the locale and the personnel.      The most controversial question
This description would be in        was the characterization of the
English in order to be readily      Cafe personnel - especially the
accessible to everybody.  It would  proposed national heterogeneity.
serve two main purposes:            The main views presented are
  1) the stories by various         included in the 'Condensed Papers'
writers would obviously describe    [found afterwards] and I am not
the same Cafe;                      going to reiterate them here.  As
  2) the less creative writers      far as I can see this question is
would be able to concentrate on     still open - in all the others at
the plot instead of also having to  least some kind of a consensus was
invent the settings.                achieved.
  Three different settings were                      
described but description #2 was              Basic Settings
the favourite already before the
plan was posted and there was         A more detailed description of
actually no further discussion on   the settings is included in the
the net.                            Condensed Papers.
  There were differences of           The Cafe - A small cafe in rural
opinion concerning various aspects  surroundings (not visible from the
of the description.  Most of these  inside).  Predominantly Lojbanic
have been resolved but some are in  clientele gathers there to tell
                                    stories.  Some netters have
                                    already arrived.  Nick advises to

avoid interaction for the time        These stories have resulted in a
being (cf. Condensed Papers)        very active conversation on the
  The Personnel - Multinational     net concerning various linguistic
personnel, Chinese manager and 5    aspects - grammar, semantics, and
others representing the source      pragmatics.  One very challenging
languages of Lojban.  Detailed      task for the future is the
characterization isn't available    collection, editing and
yet so avoid adding details in the  publication of the accumulating
stories.  All the views presented   theoretical material so that the
on the net concerning the           results of these conversations can
characterization ought to be        be used by the whole Lojban commu-
studied most carefully by all       nity.
potential writers.  We need well    
thought-out characterizations            The Newsletter Proposal
which take into account the views
presented by Ivan and others          Nick Nicholas posted a proposal
concerning the difficulty of real-  concerning a Cafe Newsletter which
istically portraying national       would publish all kinds of Lojban
characteristics and the need to     text connected with the Cafe.  The
have recognizably non-American      proposal is included in the
characters as desired by Lojbab     Condensed Papers.
and some non-netters.  Mark           The newsletter would actually
pointed out that the characters     widen the scope of the Lojban
must be such that later writers     texts compared to the original
can live with them.  They are       plan.  The original plan called
basically background characters     for stories about the Cafe or
but writers may want to use them    stories told at the Cafe - the
in their stories.  Others may       Newsletter would accept all kinds
choose to ignore them in which      of original Lojban text connected
case the characterizations don't    with the Cafe, e.g.  small studies
really matter very much.            like my 'etudes' would be eligible
                                    for publication.  This would be
       Accumulated Material         the first purely Lojban journal -
                                    all the theoretical material with
  English Descriptions - There      English explanations and glosses
isn't very much new descriptive     would be published in ju'i lobypli
material as the project hasn't      as would selected Lojban writings
actually started yet - in spite of  not connected with the Cafe.
the posting of the first              The main purpose of the
preparatory Lojban texts.  Nick     Newsletter would be to encourage
Nicholas has added detail to the    and help beginning writers.  The
original Description #2 of the      second raison d'etre would be to
locale, David Bowen has described   show that we have advanced so far
a Cafe manager, and I (Veijo) have  that Lojban can be used without
proposed a Cafe worker.             English glosses.  Perhaps the most
  Lojban Text - Altogether 6        advanced stories wouldn't be
Lojban stories have been posted -   accessible to everybody but there
a proper story by Mark Shoulson, a  would probably be a much greater
longish 'rant' by Nick Nicholas, 2  number of easy and intermediate
short 'etudes' by Veijo Vilva and   articles.  I also think that
a 'rant' and a short tale by Iain   having the stories without English
Alexander.  [A 7th piece, a 3-part  glosses would be advantageous as
character sketch by Nick, was       the structure of Lojban -
posted but Nick has indicated that  especially 'Lojbanic' Lojban - is
he intends to substantially         so different that providing an
rewrite it], Only the stories by    English version may actually
Mark and Iain contain storytelling  hinder understanding or at least
along the lines indicated in the    slow down the learning.
plan, the others are more           
preparatory.                               To would-be writers

  1.  Start writing NOW!            sentence.  Lojban IS different.  A
  2.  Don't set goals that are too  tanru, a lujvo, a sumti with
ambitious.  Remember that the       attachments, a "ko" at a
published stories do not set a      unaccustomed position may all be
standard which you ought to match.  very difficult to express
Your first stories can be very      naturally in English.  Just accept
short and use simple sentences.     it.  Utilize it.
As an example, my first attempt,      10.  Start writing.
after minor corrections, may be                      
found below [page 46].                     The Condensed Papers
  3.  Start with simple things, do
experiments with the language.        This is a record of the
Try to avoid formulating the ideas  Development of the Ckafybarja
in English - otherwise you may      Project, the Main Ideas, the
have difficulties with              Conversations and Differences of
astonishingly simple expressions.   Opinion concerning the
  4.  You may find to your          Characterization of the Cafe Per-
surprise that it is often actually  sonnel.
easier to express something in        This is not a straight record of
Lojban because you don't have to    the conversations on the net.  I
cope with the relatively free       have deleted a lot of material -
structure of English.  Just drop    either redundant or not essential
the words to the proper slots and   for the project at the present
the unambiguous grammar of Lojban   stage.  I have also taken the
takes care of the rest.             liberty of making some minor
  5.  Don't force yourself to       changes to the text following the
invent a story - it doesn't work.   deletions so that the resulting
The story either comes or not.      joints are more natural.
Pick up something and start           Sometimes only first names
writing about it - but do it now.   appear in identifying comments.
  6.  The story isn't very          Full names for these people are
important at this stage.  It may    Veijo Vilva, Nick Nicholas (alias
be quite banal or even non-         la nitcion.), Iain Alexander,
existent - if you find a Lojbanic   Lojbab (Bob LeChevalier), Colin
way of expressing something, write  Fine, Mark Shoulson, Nora LeCheva-
it down.                            lier, Andrew Smith, Ivan
  7.  There is no stylistic         Derzhanski.  We've tried to spell
tradition, you are completely free  everyone else's name out in full.
- within the dictates of the                         
grammar, of course.  If you end up  __________________________________
expressing your thoughts in a way   
which doesn't resemble anything        A.  Lojbab's original Lojban
you ever read, it's quite alright.      Canterbury Tales proposal
  8.  Don't be afraid of simple
sentences.  Lojban IS different.      Lojbab:  This LogFest was a fun
Writing a complex sentence which    gathering, and not one for work.
doesn't fall apart doesn't prove    Nothing really accomplished except
you know Lojban well - it is just   to teach people a bit more of the
a trivial exercise.  Don't write a  language, use it a little, and
sentence which you can't readily    socialize, learning more about
understand yourself - even next     each other.  One topic of
week.  You ought to be able to      discussion was how to get more
understand your sentences without   people doing something with the
parsing/analyzing/translating - at  language.  The topic segued into
least the structure even if you     literature, original Lojban lit-
don't remember all the words you    erature.  One long thought-about
had to pick from the word lists.    idea that was discussed again was
  9.  It doesn't matter if you      an interactive role playing
can't find a natural English way    project of the type often con-
of expressing the idea of a         ducted at science fiction

conventions, based on a Lojban-re-    One rule - if you have a
lated scenario.  Learning a little  specific story idea, whether you
Lojban would give actor/players of  want to write it or not:  don't
the scenario an advantage.          talk about it in English.  The
  But a better idea surfaced, one   stories are to be Lojban stories,
that can get more involved.         and whatever appeal they have, as
  The germinal start of English as  the first Lojban literature, will
a literary language was Chaucer's   be emphasized by their not
Canterbury Tales, and someone       existing in English first.  If you
mentioned that Italian has a        have trouble with the language,
similar medieval literary           you can ask how-to-say-it
landmark, the Decameron.  Perhaps   questions on Lojban List, or send
other languages as well.  The       messages privately to Nick, Ivan,
essence of the Canterbury Tales is  Colin, John Cowan, Mark Shoulson,
that they are a bunch of 1st        or me.
person tales, rich and colorful,      Less experienced Lojbanists
often bawdy.  Why not write some-   might team up on a story, in which
thing similar for Lojban, or at     case you can talk privately with
least start to do so.  We can get   each other in whatever language
a lot of people involved, who need  about your story, or if necessary,
only commit to writing a single     with one experienced Lojbanist
short tale - a page long would be   that you interact with from the
fine.  A couple of the more expert  above list.
Lojbanists - Nick, Ivan, and Mark,  
for example, might do some longer     Chris Handley:  Some points to
tales, perhaps about characters     remember about both Canterbury
that might have a more complex      Tales and the Decameron:
story.                                1) They were written by one
  One charm of the Canterbury       person (and a genius at that);
Tales is the variety of per-          2) They were written fairly well
sonalities of the characters - we   into the flowering of the
can achieve that by having many     language.
authors.  Stylistic consistency       In my opinion neither of these
isn't necessary, since different    conditions apply to Lojban at the
people have different ways of       moment, which should not stop us
talking.  If you are relatively     doing something.  Certainly a
unskilled, you might want to        collection of stories along a
choose a less-well educated         central theme would be a great
character, but even this might not  start to the language.
be a constraint.                      Another suggestion would be
  The question is how to devise a   another parlour game.  One person
scenario around which people can    starts off and writes part of a
write these short-short stories.    story (a para, a sentence,
Canterbury Tales takes place where  whatever).  This is then passed to
travellers gather - an inn or bar.  the next person in the list to
Do we tell tales of the people of   continue, and so on.  (In the
mythical Lojbanistan?  Or do we     normal version, you stop in mid
presume a modern or post-modern     sentence, but that may be a tad
society, with people much like the  difficult).
spectrum found in the world today?  
One possibility proposed would be     Lojbab:  I think the continued
people on a space station, thus     story idea is a good one, but you
appealing to the SF fans among us   need really cooperative people to
- an international space station,   have it work.  We did try it once
wherein people like Ivan and Nick   with Lojban, but a certain person
can bring in tales from other       (who shall remain nameless) made a
cultures.  Some could be tales of   point of striving for truly
earth, while others could be high   strange twists in the story at
adventure in space.                 every opportunity - strange enough
                                    that there was no possibility that

the result could be interesting     People have felt almost no urge to
(as opposed to the process - which  use Lojban for logical expression,
can be interesting in spite of      any more than they feel the urge
strangeness, or because of it).     to use English for it.  Usually
                                    the ones want to do so use
  Randall Helzermann:  So is        symbolic logic.
Lojban going to be the first          I understand your point, but
language in which the "classic      there really is no one who would
novel" was defined by a committee?  write the book, and more
  Before going to the "great        importantly, probably no one who
lojbanian novel" why not build a    would read it.  It seems like the
lojbanic tradition from the roots   same kind of idealistic project as
up?  The first thing that should    the occasionally proposed Lojban
be written in my opinion is a       dictionary, written entirely in
primer on logical and critical      Lojban.  Such a book could be
thinking.                           written, I think, but would be an
                                    exercise to prove a point and
  Lojbab:  This might be nice,      would probably not be very good,
but:                                or much-used.  Maybe some day, but
  1) people seem to want to write   not nearly yet.
creatively, and I will encourage      But thanks for the compliment.
any writing in Lojban for any       I'm glad someone thinks I do
reason                              things logically and clear-
  2) I don't know anyone competent  thinkingly around here zo'o.
to write a primer on logical and
critical thinking in English, much    My main reason for suggesting
less in Lojban.  Maybe Lojban will  the Canterbury Tales approach is
lead to the development of such a   that we are currently being
genius (if the Sapir-Whorf          flooded with translations of a
Hypothesis is true), but right now  variety of materials from other
all we have is rather normal        languages, but almost no one
mostly-English native speakers      (except Michael Helsem) has
writing non-fluently in a not       attempted significant original
quite living language.              writing in Lojban.  Since
                                    translation always involves some
  Randall:  What?!? you yourself    amount of interlingual compromise
must have done an incredible        (as we've seen in the phone game),
amount of thinking about "logical   only original writing in the lan-
and critical thinking" when         guage will lead to the development
designing Lojban, a language        of true Lojban stylistics -
ostensibly made to encourage such.  something near and dear to Nick's
  How about a tractus on            heart, if not others'.
elementary logic then?                By making the length be at the
                                    writers' options, we can get
  Lojbab:  I did surprisingly       people like Nick, who could
little thinking about "logical and  probably write a good, longer
critical thinking".  Remember that  story, but also maybe encourage
I didn't design Lojban from         Chris, who has never posted longer
scratch, but built on the original  than words and sentences, to
design by JCB.  John Parks-         contribute something.  The
Clifford (pc) and others have       advantage of having a common
contributed significantly to the    context for the stories, is that
'logical' aspects of the language,  it is possible in such a context
and pc is probably the most         to tell a little anecdote in as
competent in the intersection of    little as a paragraph or two that
logic and Lojban.  As for myself,   can form part of the compendium as
I nearly flunked logic in college,  well as a longer story.
and rely on my wife and others      
when logic issues come up in          Lojbab (paraphrased):  Those who
Lojban, which frankly isn't often.  have trouble coming up with plot

lines can take stories from the       I don't think the way to
great mythologies, and use their    founding original Lojban liter-
plots as the basis for Lojban       ature can be found in emulation.
stories.  There are many little-    It takes great literary talent to
known such stories.  For example,   transform an existing story into
Veijo, could we use stories from    something worthwhile - not a mere
the Finnish epic, the Kalevala, as  imitation.  A literature arises
the basis for Lojbanic stories.     from an existing cultural and
                                    linguistic background and the only
  Veijo:  ... about the             thing we have at hand is a half-
possibility of using The Kalevala   baked language.  This is the fact
as a starting point for the Lojban  we must start from.  If we are to
Canterbury Tales.  It has taken me  lay the foundations of a liter-
a while to sort things out as I     ature we must look at the world -
didn't want to give a hasty         the language - we have.  What is
answer.  It's been quite a while    the world of Lojban like?  What
since I read Kalevala - and not a   sets it apart from the rest?  If
total edition at that - and I had   you take Lojban sans tanru, lujvo
to do a quick sampling of it.  I    and le'avla it presents a
also read through a few reviews.    remarkably Platonian view of the
I feel it's not much use taking an  world.  The most distinguishing
odd plot from Kalevala and trying   feature of gismu and many cmavo is
to elaborate on that as Kalevala    that they describe a very ideal
covers the whole spectrum of human  world, every word brings out the
life and the stories are not very   essence, the underlying principle
unique.                             of a class of phenomena.  In most
  One outstanding feature of        natural languages the general is
Kalevala is, however, the way       described in terms which are
mythos permeates everything in an   either alien or complex, in Lojban
almost pantheistic way.  The scale  the opposite prevails.  This makes
is continuous from an almost        it possible to present a distilled
imperceptible presence to           view of the surrounding world
personified entities - not quite    without resorting to unnatural
Olympian in power but more on par   expressions and also to contrast
with the main characters of the     the general and the particular in
story who themselves cannot always  a single utterance or even a
be distinguished from the mythos.   single bridi.  The avoidance of
There is also a strong faith in     tanru and lujvo can be thought of
the power of words - not any        as another form of controlled and
single, magic ones but prolonged    recognizable ellipsis - only the
singing which can drive an          essential is expressed and the
opponent up to his armpits into a   particular is suppressed.  Other
swamp or build a boat, singing of   areas where Lojban excels are the
real men, not mere boys nor of      tense system, the attitudinal and
those feeble in body or character.  emotional indicators and of course
Words do not offer a quick way out  the connectives.  We have a very
of a tight spot and at a crucial    rich apparatus offering unprece-
moment the vital words may be       dented opportunities for
missing and must be sought for.     expression but do we have some-
Words are the key to the duality    thing to say?
of the world - or even more as the    I think we mustn't hurry.  We
metalevel of the poems is           need the stories, the literature,
sometimes quite tightly interwoven  but we must not push things.  We
with the subject matter.  It's a    must first try to see the world -
world which is very difficult to    a slice of the present, some
portray convincingly in a           particular past, the future -
different language - or even in     through Lojban 'glasses'.  The
present-day Finnish which isn't     literary world we eventually
any more so rich in metaphor.       create must have a distinct Lojban
                                    flavour to it, it mustn't be a

mere re-representation of some      which point the student suddenly
other world.  It doesn't suffice    started to write and produced a
to avoid translation, the world     quite respectable essay about the
must be conceptualized in a Lojban  brick in no time flat.  We may
way from the ground up.  I don't    have to take a similar route to
think the stories need much of a    get started.  But for now - let's
plot, the settings give enough      start looking around.
opportunities for fruitful          
utilization of the language.  Even    Nick:
quite ordinary things can form the    Wow.
scaffolding around which the story    I mean that quite sincerely.
unfolds.  If you read the stories     I mean, when I bemoan Lojban
by e.g.  Ray Bradbury, quite many   stylistics, I usually see the
of them have a negligible plot.     trees - the complexities of
The something hangs in the          nesting, the uncertainties of
atmosphere, in many little things.  place structures in flux (lujvo
That, of course, takes great        and gismu), the markedness of
talent.  I don't know whether any   attitudinals.  You, Veijo, seem to
of us can muster that but we ought  have struck at the essence.  It is
to be able to utilize Lojban for    absolutely true that Lojban (and
the necessary special effects -     any language) sustain their own
with due constraint.  The thing     world (it is also true that one
mustn't be overdone, we are not     should not be too flashy in
aiming to produce a linguistic      pursuing the manifestations of
fire-works.  The language ought to  this world, as happens often in
be utilized subtly to produce a     Esperanto literature); it is also
mosaic of shadow and sun-light,     true that exploring this world is
soft generalizations against which  the great task awaiting Lojban
sharp detail can be engraved, the   literature.  And it is even more
dull monotonous every-day or        true that my translations so far
whatever described in a few, quick  have not done any such exploration
indicators and the richer moments   (interestingly enough, David
of life in ever increasing detail   Twery's ckafyzda diary did - not
using the full array of tools       just because it was original
available for the task.  If we      writing, but because it looked at
don't try to reproduce the world    the cafe in the staccato, explicit
in the way we are accustomed to     way we will come to expect of
see it, to use the imagery of our   Lojban...).
respective native languages - or    
our secondary languages - but try     John Cowan:  On substantive
to see our surroundings through     matters, I associate myself with
the Lojban glasses I think we may   everything that Veijo says, and I
find quite many things worth de-    express my immense admiration for
picting.                            the way that he says it.  I, too,
  Perhaps we don't need the past    believe that language naturally
or the future to provide the        leads to mythology, and that
alienating background but can       mythologies are not really
contemplate the present in the      transferable.  (Tolkien started
stories.  It may even be more       inventing his conlangs for the
fruitful to start with something    pure "philological" pleasure of
small.  I once read a book called   it, and found that they led him
'Writing the natural way' where     inexorably to mythopoetic.)
the author told about a student of  
hers who had trouble in writing an    Lojbab (written in December):
essay about her home town.  She     Notwithstanding Veijo's excellent
told the student to concentrate on  points, the idea I intended in
successively smaller and smaller    raising the Kalevala as an example
details until finally they were     is that plot ideas for short
down to an individual brick in the  stories of classic interest are
wall of a specific building at      easy to find.  Many of the plots

of stories in classic literature      On the other hand, I am
are not original plots; for         recommending this primarily to
example, most of Shakespeare's      people who think they cannot come
plays are unoriginal plots, based   up with something more "original".
on either on history, or on         Original stories are fine, and
retellings of tales that were       indeed are especially encouraged.
already set into plays or verse.    If you develop a story naturally
The intent is not to encourage      out of simply narrating in a
translation of the untranslatable   Lojbanic manner, you will have
epic of a national culture, but to  achieved what we are seeking from
point out that anyone who reads     this effort, and bring Lojban
can take a story they've seen in    alive as a language.
another language, in another form,  
and retell the plot in their own      Veijo:  One of the first things
words, perhaps inventing some new   we'll have to do when we start to
characters.  For example, one of    use Lojban creatively is to chart
my kids just brought home a         the most obvious ways of twisting
children's book, retelling the      it in our quest for expressive
classic fairy tale of Jack and the  ability.  Although a language has
Beanstalk from the first person     an unambiguous grammar and words
point of view of Jack (who sees     with but a single meaning, it must
things perhaps a little dif-        somehow allow for linguistic sur-
ferently and from a more childlike  prise - otherwise something is
perspective than the impersonal     lost.
narrator of the classic version).     The regularity of the language
The story, even while being told    will force us to find the
in a simplistic children's "see     materials for the element of
Spot run" manner (and not very      surprise in the choice of words
well, in my opinion), conveys a     and metaphors - and also in some
sense of Jack's motivations that    kind of contrapunctive
would seem out-of-place in a        juxtaposition of syntactical
third-person narrative.             structures, perhaps in a wise
  Thus, one suggestion, for         choice of modals or imaginative
someone who feels that they cannot  personal tenses.  Quantification
come up with a plot idea to write   of expressive power in a language
about:  take a story, perhaps a     is probably something quite
fairy tale or legend, that you      unattainable.  Even though we can
have read or heard, figure out      make sure that the Lojban grammar
some way that the events of the     covers all the necessary aspects
story, or something akin to them,   and are pretty convinced that
might take place in a modern or     tanru and lujvo can expand the vo-
post-modern environment, and        cabulary to the required extent,
attempt to retell it as a first     we cannot have any short term
person narrative, conveying some    certainty in this respect.
sense of the emotions experienced     Expression is a two-way process.
by the storyteller using Lojban     It is no use having an elegant
attitudinals.                       expression if no one can really
  The story will not be a simple    feel what you are trying to say.
English (or Finnish) story          In English - or any other living
anymore, nor necessarily a mere     language - we build our
imitation of the original, because  expressions to rest on the solid
you will have added some original   foundation of the linguistic
point-of-view.  And if the result   imagery which forms large parts
is not great literature, but        even of the unconscious mind of
merely "a pale imitation" anyway,   the potential readers.  In Lojban
because your writing skill isn't    we have nothing like this
that great, I say that even a pale  available.  Even the most advanced
imitation of some of the greatest   of us will have to struggle -
of literature is likely to be a     probably for years to come - to
better-than-average yarn.           attain a level of competency where

reading is no more an intellectual  comparison to that relatively
exercise but a living experience.   unknown mythic collection.  I'll
To really feel the language         leave it to people to come up with
requires that it flows in you       a suitably jingling name to
relatively effortlessly.  You must  supplant "The Kalevala Project".
have a background against which to    With the impending completion of
contrast the author's way of        the first Lojban dictionary, it is
saying things.  Esperanto is so     time for people to write
much like the mainstream Indo-      originally in Lojban (rather than
European languages that the early   in translation from other
literary efforts could build on     languages) and hence to explore
the existing imagery.  Lojban is    the unique point-of-view and style
conceptually so different that we   that Lojban's unusual nature might
have no such easy way out of our    bring to narrative (the assumption
predicament.  The imagery will      of the uniqueness of this point-
have to be different otherwise we   of-view actually assumes Sapir-
may end up using modals to rebuild  Whorf is true, but we'll ignore
the alien imagery.  At this stage   that problem for now).
translations may contain seeds of     We had a long discussion at
peril as we don't yet have a        LogFest, and Veijo's comments
living tradition to protect the     about basing the story(s) on a
language from the dominance of      uniquely Lojbanic world-view,
external influences.  I don't       coupled with Nick Nicholas's
implicate that we ought to exclude  identification of what writings
these influences totally.  The      seemed to him to best represent a
language needs the common imagery   budding Lojban culture, underlay
of the whole mankind and perhaps    much of the discussion and its
even large sections of the          current resolution.
heritage of the main cultures but     The goal is Lojban stories
this imagery must trickle in in a   written from a common narrative
controlled way, not as an           starting point, written by as many
avalanche.                          different people as possible, each
                                    of varying Lojban skill levels.
__________________________________    Quickly ruled out was a scenario
                _                   involving medieval times, which
                                    would severely restrict the scope
B. The Lojban Kalevala Project =>   of stories that could be told, and
      The Ckafybarja Project        a space travel scenario, with
                                    people travelling together telling
  Lojbab:  On Lojban List, there    stories of their home worlds.
has been discussion for the last    Unfortunately, this type of
month on what I once called the     scenario would require a lot of
Lojban Canterbury Tales.  Several   what SF people call "world-
major cultures trace their          building" - every story would need
earliest cultural and linguistic    the added baggage of devising a
identity to a collection of         believable 'world' wherein it
stories written in the language.    takes place, and making that
These include Chaucer's Canterbury  unique world come alive.  Even the
tales, which basically defined the  better SF writers often fail at
birth of Middle English,            the 'world-building' game, and it
Shakespeare, who did the same for   seems too much to ask of the non-
Modern English, the Decameron for   expert writers who will be trying
Italian, the tales of the Arabian   to bring Lojban to life, to ask
Nights for Arabic.  Veijo Vilva's   them to bring totally new worlds
moving comments about the           to life as well.
necessary birth of a Lojban           Still the idea is to bring
stylistics through original         people together in a situation
literature, written under the       where they will tend to tell
subject title of "The Kalevala",    stories, a process that takes time
seems to have shifted the focus of

when a lot of stories are to be     are SF fans, to get inspiration
told.  In modern society, people    from a variety of similar ideas
are simply not thrown together in   used in SF stories, including the
numbers sufficient for such         "White Hart" tales of Arthur C.
storytelling.  There was a          Clarke, and the Callahan's Bar
suggestion of a scenario involving  tales of Spider Robinson.  For a
a story-telling contest of some     brief while we had the compromise
type, but this didn't fire          situation of a coffee house on the
people's imagination.  In           edge of the sand pits, allowing
retrospect, I think such a com-     both indoor and outdoor settings
petition would have caused          for storytelling, but the anti-pit
problems in that some of the        people eventually came up with a
short-shorts that beginning         better approach.
Lojbanists might write won't be in    We devised an interesting,
the same story-telling league as    Lojban-allegorical coffeehouse
longer stories told by more         which is interesting enough to
experienced Lojbanists.  I'd        serve as the subject of stories,
rather see people write well what   as well as a backdrop for the
they feel comfortable at writing    telling of stories.  The concept
about, and not try to compete with  is a coffeehouse with an
other Lojbanists, better or worse,  international flavor in which
which I think a competition theme   Lojban is spoken.  The atmosphere
would naturally lead to.  The goal  is vaguely contemporary, but
is Lojban stories written from a    somewhat timeless.  Indeed, one
common narrative starting point,    idea was to leave the outside of
written by as many different        the coffeehouse, i.e. its locale,
people as possible, each of         essentially unspecified.
varying Lojban skill levels.          Description #2 below, the
  We came up with a scenario that   current strong favorite, is
allows, and even encourages, a      probably in a rural or mountainous
motley collection of stories of     setting, since it suggests that
varying lengths.  We decided to     the sandpits are nearby if not
draw on the limited range of        immediately present, but unlike
'Lojban culture' that exists        our starting premise, the sandpits
today.  The first such element      are not essential to the
identified was the "Jimbob" 'rant'  description (though they clearly
(as David Twery labelled it) that   inspired the climbing equipment).
we published in JL16.  We talked    But people voting for description
of the stories that the Jimbobs     #2 in many cases specified that
might tell each other while         they wanted the windows removed
"working in the sandpits" while     from the description, so that the
the Esperantists climbed their      outside remains undefined.  What
wall and the apes came abseiling    will likely happen is that we will
down.  Several people liked this    see how things develop from what
idea, but others objected           we have, and add more details as
violently.  To them, the Jimbob     needed by specific authors as the
allegory makes for a distracting    culture of the coffeehouse becomes
setting for telling a story - it    further defined.
is a story in itself and not a        The coffeehouse has 6 employees,
setting; it is also a humorous,     each a representative of a culture
indeed ridiculous setting, and      using one of the source languages
might ruin a story with a serious   for Lojban (There was a lot of
tone.                               debate over whether to use a
  Then we turned to David Twery's   British or American representative
coffee-house (ckafyzda) text        for English, and I would have sug-
[hopefully to be published in       gested Australian in honor of
JL18], which Nick has identified    Nick, but people settled on
as the first authentic-seeming      American because unfortunately the
"Lojban world-view" text.  It also  majority of Lojbanists, who are
allows Lojbanists, many of whom     mostly Americans, may be familiar

only with American culture, and we  and rely upon to the finest
don't want to shut people out of    detail.
this effort for cultural              Indeed the coffeehouse
blindness.)                         description will be described and
  We were able to identify a        finalized in English, to make sure
number of "roles" to be filled in   that everyone understands all the
a coffeehouse:  manager, cook,      details in a consistent manner.
waiter/waitress, busboy, cashier.   It also allows people to use a
[clarification: the American        variety of Lojban expressions and
English word 'busboy', or perhaps   forms to describe the English-
'bus-person' cleans tables at the   defined setting.  Thus the
end of a meal and prepares them     descriptions by various authors
for new patrons.]                   will not read exactly the same,
  But some of these are seen as of  yet the place they are describing
a lower, subservient nature as      will obviously be the same place.
compared with others.  Rather than    We welcome and indeed encourage
risk association of some culture    people to write descriptions in
being seen as stereotypically sub-  Lojban, recognizing that the
servient by tying a character of    description will have to be
that culture to a particular role   translated into clear English.
(e.g., the Chinese busboy), the     But this gives people something to
workers rotate jobs, giving the     write about in Lojban, and you can
job of cook to a different person   if you choose use your Lojban text
each night, with the effect that    as a starting point for an even-
the menu is both international,     tual story for the collection.
exotic, and a bit unpredictable.      The third phase of the scenario
The manager was assigned to the     definition is to define the six
Chinese character, based on         characters in enough depth that
Chinese as the most populous of     people can include them in the
the Lojban languages.               backdrop to their stories and have
  A friend of Karen Stein's who     them recognizably be the same
came to LogFest, Phil, wrote up     people.  The details should range
three descriptions based on this    from gender, age, and appearance,
concept.  Description #2 was        to personality, distinctive
favored provided that the windows   mannerisms, and outside interests
were removed from the description,  that might serve as jumping off
and thus the need to describe what  places for a story when the
is outside the windows.             indicated person comes up to the
  Meanwhile there is further work   table with a tray of food, or
to be done, some of which requires  coffee.
knowledge of Lojban, some that        This phase will be conducted in
requires only imagination.  More    the manner of a contest followed
details of the setting need to be   by a vote.  Write a character
worked out, eventually giving       sketch of one of the characters,
enough information that a detailed  putting as much or as little
floor plan of the coffeehouse can   detail into your description as
be drawn, with locations of         you care to.  The contest will be
everything marked, so that people   announced in JL17 (but I'd like to
writing stories can be consistent   have a couple of samples by then),
in describing the scene wherein     and thus people have plenty of
the story is told (given that the   time to write good descriptions
exterior environment is undefined,  before a voting a couple of months
there is no particular need for     later, with the results of all
consistency, or even implied        phases of this introductory work
truth, in the stories themselves,   appearing in JL18, I hope.  All
but it was felt that this col-      those who submit any ideas, text,
lection, being written by a large   description, or otherwise indicate
number of authors of varying        definite interest in participating
styles, needed to have some one     in the project will be eligible to
thing that all authors could share  vote.  Again, character descrip-

tions can be written in Lojban,     carpet might be made brown to hide
but we will also need English       coffee stains.
  However, the polycultural                   Description #1
polylinguistic background of the
characters has led me to identify     My eyes had to adjust to the
a fourth task that the more         difference in lighting.  The light
skilled Lojbanists can start on     in the place came from the twelve
now, independent of the actual      stain glass tiffany lamps which
descriptions of the characters (or  hung from the ceiling over a
at least it may be so).  Each of    table.  Low wattage bulbs cast a
our 6 cultural representatives      pale light around a place which
will be a native speaker of their   measured some 10 meters in length
own language - Lojban is the        and some 5 meters across.  The
lingua franca that all share, and   tables have four chairs set around
the lingua franca of those who      each of them, and as I sat down in
patronize the coffeehouse as well   the green cushioned chair I was
(hence stories told in Lojban       shown, I had a chance to survey
therein).  But Lojban has many      the rest of this place I found my-
possible styles, and some of these  self.  The table settings had
styles will be dependent on the     white linen napkins with an
native language of the speakers.    embroidered design of a type
Thus, the Hindi speaker may be      unfamiliar to me.  The silverware
prone to SOV-order sentences, the   was of a plain though excellent in
Chinese speaker to strange-to-      quality, in addition there was a
English-speakers tanru, and the     set of chopsticks incorporated
Arabic speaker to flowery meta-     into the traditional place set-
phor.  The Russian speaker may      ting.  There were no coffee cups
choose lujvo forms that are heavy   set out on the tables.  [Along the
in consonant clusters, whereas the  walls hung pictures, and many of
Chinese speaker will minimize       these were of people whom I did
clusters and maximize vowels.       not recognize, and always with the
  I don't pretend to know enough    same person, presumably the
of the non-English source           manager of this establishment.]
languages to try to describe them   Each picture had a gold frame, and
in any detail, but some Lojbanists  the expressions in the pictures
like Ivan Derzhanski probably do;   ranged across every known emotion.
others might be willing to          The floor was carpeted with a
research.  The result will be       green shag of similar shade to the
perhaps a short sample of Lojban    chairs, as a result the only
"conversation" and of "narrative"   sounds that one hears is the
styles for each of the six          gentle flapping to the door going
characters (perhaps each of them    into the kitchen, and the whispers
describing the same scene to make   of conversations occurring at the
for ready comparison), along with   nearby tables.  [The place was
an English language description of  quiet, still, at peace, as the man
the essential linguistic            in all the pictures is approaching
ingredients that comprise the       me. ...]
style, so that others can try to      _____________________________
emulate the styles when writing.
The ideal will thus be, along with    Description #2 is the current
distinctive personalities for the   favorite, having references to
6 characters, a distinctive style   existing Lojban texts that might
of Lojban speech that will          somehow be worked into the
identify the characters and also    stories-to-be-told, possibly with
lend authenticity to the style.     modification.  The main objection
  Here are the proposed             is to the windows, that would
descriptions.  For #1, the offen-   require a description of the
ding-to-some picture sentences are  outside.  (The outside might, but
bracketed.  Someone suggested the   need not, be in a mountainous

rural area where rock climbing is   was the inscription:  "Members of
done - or sand pits.  We didn't     the first sandpit expedition to
want to be stuck with Don Harlow's  find the first digger, or traces
El Capitan reference of the         thereof - 198?"  The table also
original Jimbob story - not ev-     bore other marks of former patrons
eryone knows what Yosemite looks    who had drank their selections and
like, and who says that the         transcribed their feelings with
coffeehouse is even anywhere in     pitons.  The walls were littered
America.)  A possible modification  with climbing apparel and debris
would be to make the windows high   in what might charitably have been
up, or frosted so that people       termed a collage.  There were the
can't see through them.  This       rusting remains of pitons and
provides the light without the      hooks abutting practically new
undefined scenery.                  lengths of the latest high test
  [Note:  This is not the original  rope.  Opposite the door from
text prepared by Phil.  The stairs  which I had entered was a ladder -
from Ivan's story printed in this   a climbing ladder, of course.  The
issue were originally               ladder reached to the ceiling, and
misunderstood to be a ladder, and   a solid-looking trap door that
a ladder was therefore added to     made me wonder of the unknown
the description.  Though we've      relics that lay beyond, and the
learned that the ladder in the      stories they might hold.
coffeehouse bears no resemblance    Underneath these visible artifacts
to the marble stairs of Ivan's      were the dour reminders of the
story, the concept in a room fur-   primary business of this
nished in climbing equipment, of    establishment-coffee.  There were
using a climbing ladder to access   full wooden bins of coffee from
a trap door (presumably leading to  just about every place in the
the attic, wherein other artifacts  world, with or without caffeine.
may be found that could inspire     The cook was visible to all and in
more stories) fits the scenario     the process of developing the
even if the specific association    latest creation on the current
with Ivan's story is excluded.      menu, and not without some debate
Indeed, someone of Ivan's culture   about the amount of spice the
might see the ladder, and use it    particular dish required.  This
as a lead-in to tell that story.    happy riot provided the
That is the purpose of having       counterpoint to the hissing, and
detailed decor with potential       boiling of a near endless stream
heavy symbolism - it allows people  of coffee beans in response to the
hooks to hang a story on, either a  always cold, often frustrated, and
new story or one from their native  very determined clientele.
          Description #2                            _

  As I walked under the crossed       #3 is a distinctly unsavory
climbing axes, and into the cof-    place, or savory indeed if that is
feehouse, I felt I was in a place   the type of place you like.
designed to give one the feeling    People seemed to feel strongest
of putting on an old comfortable    about this one, in both positive
pair of shoes.  [The large arched   and negative directions.
windows filled the dining area
with light, and since all of the              Description #3
booths were lined along the
outside, every booth had a superb     The current dart game was in
view of the .] The benches were     progress, with its normally furi-
made of old soft oak, in which      ous dispute about scoring from its
many tales and symbols had been     very stressed participants.  I had
carved.  On the bench I was seated  walked in for my usual pot of

Jamaican Blue Mountain, this being  cultural imagery self-conscious
the only place I could get it       and flimsy.  But this project is
every day, and I sat down in my     just perfect for us.  We can get
usual table, one of the few which   cosy in it; we can all write like
had a level table, and reasonably   Twery :), in that detached,
sound chairs.  I reviewed the       detail-seeking chain of sumti I
familiar surroundings.  Aside from  find so endearing; we can
the dart game, which had a wall in  concentrate on the tiniest details
which the number of dart holes ap-  (Lojban is ideally suited for that
peared to compromise the            tutorial application Veijo
structural integrity of the build-  mentioned - start writing about a
ing, there was the varnished        town by writing about a single
hardwood floor, which was again     brick in a building in the town).
showing the effects of the heavy      We should not be afraid to put
traffic of the numbers and shoes    into the story that which we are,
of the customers.  The place        either.  No need to exoticise or
closes for a week once every three  aggrandise our late-20th-century
years, just so the management can   mundaneness and splinter interests
refinish the floor.  The other      (the exotic is not unwelcome, of
tables were showing their wear      course).
from the customers.  Some of the      The unsympathetic outsider might
tables were still in good shape,    also scoff at our attention to
but most were worn out from the     detail (the colour of the
life that seemed to pour out of     carpet?!) - but no, this all
the customers and into the          matters.
furniture, the poor furniture was     It's right to reject Jimbobs as
not designed for this.  As a        a story basis; a bit too self-
result, these old maple and pine    conscious, and intended as a
pedestal tables had not only seen   cliquey thing.  Still, veiled ref-
better days, they had seen better   erences to current pitwork
years.  However, like the dart      wouldn't help, and would allow a
game, the often refinished floor,   lot of therapeutic mutual ego
and the old sunbeam coffee ma-      massaging :)  What with the
chines, and cast iron cooking       allegory really being Don Harlow's
utensils I have often seen          brainchild, I wonder what
cleaned, they are irreplaceable.    reference we make to the
There is an identity to this        Esperantists going up the mountain
place, that while the customers     - and in general, how much we let
may come and go, this place will    the outside world (including
be what they share in common.       merko) impinge on the Cafe goings
          ______________            on.
Chinese - Manager; Russian -          I have a couple of thoughts on
  Cook/Wait/Bus/Dishwasher;         the Cafe personnel and the decor;
  American - Cook/Wait/Bus/-        I'll get back to you.  My
  Dishwasher; Arabic - Cook/Wait/-  jimbobism makes me go for #2, with
  Bus/Dishwasher; Hindi - Cook/-    #3 as an alternative.  Do we go
  Wait/Bus/Dishwasher; Spanish -    for equal ratios of men and women?
  Cook/Wait/Bus/Dishwasher.         Do we have any minorities or
Rotating Menu, With Chinese         "deviations" in the personas, or
  overtones because of manager      keep them mainstream? [Clarifying
International Menu                  later:  Actually, I was thinking
                                    sexual minorities.  I expect we
            Discussion              can also assume homophobia to have
                                    been eradicated in Lojbanistan.]
  Nick:  This is a most capital     Hm.  We shall see.
suggestion.  I'm for it full          Dang, this WILL be fun :)
throttle.  I mean, sure, the
unsympathetic outsider would find   The names will have to be native
our scampering for any hint of      Lojban (rafsi):

  .u'isai.u'uru'e mi pu nalmorji    colourless - in fact, they are as
lenu cusku lei se stidi cmene.  We  colourful as anything - and they
could have                          are not in the least Russian in
{cic.} ("Wildman")                  culture (that is Grin's own
{cis.} ("Hot Pants")                nationality).
{cit.} ("Kid")                        [On sexual minorities:] ... Now
{ciz.} ("Wierdo")                   I'm going to milxe disagree.  We
{dar.} ("Daredevil")                aren't going to break all existing
{dib.} ("Darl")                     conventions at once, are we?
{din.} ("Moneybag")                 We're in an imaginary land, our
{dir.} ("Mr. Kibbitz")              characters talk in Lojban, that's
{duk.} ("Worrywart")                about enough.  I think I could do
{fad.} ("Norm")                     with three men and three women,
{fad.} ("Mr Attitude")              all of them heterosexual.
{faz.} ("Dennis the Menace")          [On staffing:] I don't see why
{fun./xaufun.} ("Lucky") (these     we need the staff to be rotating.
are all #3 names, eh?)              That's not how coffeehouses in the
- or for less unsavoury:            real world are anyway.
{sax.} ("Harmonia")                     [Nick:  Mmm... OK, don't have
{glek.} ("Felicia")                   'em rotating shrug.  Cuts the
{vir.} ("Carl")                       numbers down to five.]
{nol.} ("Adolf")                    
{tir.} ("Ferris") ...                 Veijo:  As a quick first comment
                                    I support these opinions.  It's
  Ivan:  Whoever wants to write a   better to make these 'background'
story with Chinese, (Hindu)         characters as neutral as possible
Indians, or Arabs among the         so that the writers don't get into
characters had better be very       unnecessary problems.  The
familiar with the corresponding     characters and the storytellers/-
cultures.  I wouldn't venture       observers in the actual stories
anything of the sort, and           are another matter.  A visitor
therefore make the following        dropping into the cafe isn't
  Counterproposal.  Don't specify   observing the 'common' world when
any national identity or cultural   in the cafe.  His story or the
background for the characters.      story he is listening to while in
Make them representatives of an     the cafe may describe various eth-
abstract, undetermined, or          nic/national/linguistic groups but
fictitious nation.  In this case    the narrator's relationship to the
they might be Lojbanis by birth,    cafe ought to reflect his rela-
for example.  Assume, for the       tionship to the Lojbanic culture.
purpose of the game, that           He may be a full-blown lojbo or
everyone's skin is the same         still have one foot in his ori-
colour.                             ginal culture which will affect
  Otherwise you risk to end up      the way he describes the settings,
with a story that no Arab (say)     the balance between superficial
would find plausible.               and essential details.  Maybe even
  [Later clarifying:]  When I       the male/female dichotomy is
proposed that, I was mainly         superfluous in this context.
thinking of the stories of          
Alexander Grin, one of my favour-     Nick:  Neutral, yes, but not
ite authors.  The events in his     characterless.  Exploring
stories happen in a country which   stylistic stereotypes (the
doesn't exist in the real world,    sledgehammer JL15 I'm prone to)
and even no hint is given as to     should be fun.  I already had in
its location on the map (though it  mind a tanru-ist, an attitu-
is clear that it is a warm area :-  dinalist, an anaphorist and an
)).  The characters, natives of     SVO-ist, as well as the obligatory
that country, are not associated    Prolog speaker :)
with any of the existing cultures.    I think the monomania of
Yet they are by no means            exploring every facet of familiar

objects in a familiar surrounding   better not to go too carefully
(the old brick thing) is highly     this route, and play with that in
pertinent to this do.  Plots and    one of your own stories with a few
tales aren't essential; a laid-     patrons you bring in (if you think
back, look-at-what-everyone-else-   you can do it and still make the
is-doing-and-how-that-crack-on-     story work, which Ivan fears
the-wall-runs attitude is just as   wouldn't happen).  Remember:  If
appropriate here.                   you want something in a character,
  In a boisterous environment like  it can walk in the door.  The
#2, given we've taken out the       patrons, over which each writer
cultural differences, I'd prefer    has more or less complete control,
it if the boisterousness were       are the ones which make the
sustained by some heterogeneity     stories click.  The staff is
amongst the cafe personnel.         background.
                                      Your plan might be a good idea,
  Mark:  Remember, guys, these are  Nick, but it may make writing a
the background characters.  It'd    real challenge for normal folk.
be fine to give them some flavor    Remember, the staff are characters
and all, but don't think they're    that everyone has to live with.
the only ones around, nor the key   If you want a few characters that
ones (except perhaps in some rare   you can deal with that have such
"Cook's Tale" or something).        speech styles, the door's right
  ... [Gender] doesn't make a       over there, and here they come.
whole lot of difference, really.    It's unfair to ask a beginning
Bear in mind that this is Lojban    speaker to incorporate such
we're dealing with; you needn't     clevernesses into his writings by
know anyone's sex unless it         making characters common to all
becomes important.  I could see     the stories have these traits.
the waiter's sex never mentioned      Tell me, when was the last time
until five stories down the line    you could tell at a glance the
when somehow it makes a             sexual orientation of your waiter?
difference.  It'd be nice to keep   Um, badly put (wedding rings are a
it equal, so bear that in mind if   giveaway).  I mean, that's not
it becomes necessary to specify     something anyone would notice or
someone's gender.                   care about unless it chanced to
  Your own characters, that's       become important in a story.  If
something else.  Remember, these    you want someone with orientation
characters are not the ones doing   X, have him/her/it/them walk in
most of the story-telling.  The     the front door, under the climbing
ones doing that are the patrons     axes.  If you feel a need to
whom you bring in.  They may have   attach that kind of info to a
their own idiosyncrasies, culture,  staff member, make sure nobody has
bias, whatever.  In fact, I         beaten you to it, and then think
imagine the chief method of find-   twice before doing it.
ing out people's sex/color/-          Remember, though, that when you
accent/whatever might be seeing     tweak the background or the staff,
things from the point of view of a  you're messing with something that
patron who happens to be            all the writers have to live with.
particularly concerned about such   Don't build your world and force
things.                             everyone else to live in it; bring
  Keep them neutral.  I don't       your world into everyone else's.
think you have to go out of your    In fact, if you really need the
way to try to convince me they're   waiter to be a certain way, you
native lojbananas, and I always     might even consider having a
feel funny about overusing the      replacement waiter that day, just
rafsi-as-name bit; you just can't   to be on the safe side.
trust it.  I like the idea of       
giving them distinct, but             Nick:  Oh, ok.  Still, these'll
distinctly lojbanic, speaking       be the people we come home to in
styles, but perhaps it would be     every episode; they do have to be

"character actors".  It seems I     case that with people representing
missed the point of these           6 cultures interacting on a
characters, nevertheless, for       constant basis that none of the
which I duly apologise.             characters would be 'pure' in
  While I want them to be           representing their culture - after
boisterously different from each    all, they do not live with their
other, I also want them to have     own people (at least not likely).
common reference points - I want
them, as a mass, to provide a           (Ivan:  Getting a non-American
feeling of home (Lojbanistan?)        culture is great, but calling it
against which the protagonists are    Arabic or Hindi (by the way,
foregrounded.  Of course, since we    what is Hindi culture?  I've
don't know what being a native        never heard of such), without
Lojbani would entail, we can't        having a close familiarity with
exaggerate this.                      the real ones, would be way too
  ... best is to keep [differences    bold.)
in speech] subtle (not whack whack      (Nick:  Agreed.  But not
zo'u VSO); since that'll take a             inappropriate details,
lot of finesse (which I'm not sure          which will lead us to
I have), we might as well play              embarrassment.  Your
this one down.  Still, a vague              Hindi-speaking co-owner
guideline (this character prefers           will either be:  US (or
tanru, this one expands) won't              Australian) assimilated,
hurt overmuch.                              to some extent or other
  [As for backgrounds,] I won't             (just like all the Hindi-
mess with what's there, but I               speakers I know), or a
would like something reasonably             caricature.  We need some
explicit there to build on.  I am           character and colouring in
going to describe a particular              the owners.  But talking
crack in a wall :)                          about cultures we don't
                                            know enough about (I mean,
  Lojbab:  Ivan asks for several            gee, what do I come up
changes, all of which remove de-            with as a character trait
tail from the persons and scenery           for a Hispanic?) is plain
details.  To write a good story,            too risky.  Seek diversity
the details must be present.  If            elsewhere, in that which
we do not specify the culture of            we are familiar with, and
the characters, they will have no           that which everyone is
culture; i.e. they will be                  familiar with.  Having
colorless, which is exactly what            them come out Americans is
we don't want.                              not the ultimate problem
                                            (besides, there are enough
    (Ivan:  Not necessarily.  They          of us outside the States
  simply won't be identified with           to avoid that); you don't
  any one of the existing                   need to hunt down the
  cultures.)                                exotic.  There is little
                                            more mundane and more An-
Actually they won't be - with               glo-cultural than la
mostly Americans in the Lojban              tuerp.'s [David Twery] or
community, they will all end up as          la .andruc.'s [Andrew
nondescript American in culture.            Smith] writing; and yet
I would rather attempt and fail to          their work has the im-
capture hints of a foreign culture          mediate charm of being
than not to attempt at all, and             comfortably Lojbanic that
have the result seem too American.          we seek.)
We may not succeed in capturing a
true Arabic or Hindi culture (but   
then we might come close), but we
will get a somewhat non-American
culture.  One would expect in any

  The setting must be well-         quite difficult to create truly
developed and self-consistent.      flesh-and-blood characters.  But
The stories told indeed must stand  telling about a person known to
on their own, but if we are to      everybody may be equally
have any cohesiveness to a set of   difficult.  To be consistent with
stories written by a a variety of   the characterization without
people, many with no particular     merely copying, to add something
talent for literary writing, we     or just to express it somewhat
need some common setting that is    differently takes skill at many
well enough developed that the      levels.  Actually, it might be
stories hang together.  Otherwise   much more difficult than making a
we just have an anthology of        quick sketch of a stranger or
random stories, which loses the     adding depth to some your own cre-
joint-ness of the project.          ation - even in your own native
  The effort of those who worked    language.  Fitting a limited
hard to come up with the scenario,  expressiveness in Lojban to a
and the rather inspirational        detailed microcosm may be in fact
effect it seemed to have as the     harder than creating the details
coffeehouse came together in        on the fly from the bits and
peoples minds, is just the type of  pieces of the Lojban you do
consensus work that we lojbo do     master.
well, and I want to see more of       Brainstorming in English at a
it.                                 LogFest may give you quite a
  Indeed, the better writers can    skewed view.  There people are
invent stories and worlds of their  using the imagery of their native
own, and characters as well.        English to create the ckafyzda and
Others may choose to have their     everything flows smoothly.  A
story rest in an interaction        detailed English plan is, however,
between patrons and staff in the    a double-edged sword.  It helps,
coffeehouse, which itself is a      as you said, people to visualize
basis for a lot of powerful story   this microcosm.  On the other hand
imagery, and, given some            people must get rid of this
preparatory work in character       visualization not to be hampered
development of the staff, allows    by it (jumping from English - or
people with perhaps less skill or   Finnish or what so ever - to
imagination to still tell a         Lojban already requires a certain
reasonable story, concentrating on  amount of flexibility of mind).
the Lojban and not on the creative  It will also be quite necessary to
work that not all of us do so       transform the plan into a Lojban
well.                               plan to help the less experienced
  The better writers can invent     Lojbanists to handle the basic
stories and worlds of their own,    premises.  I used the word
and characters as well.  Others     'transform' quite intentionally
may choose to have their story      instead of the word 'translate' as
rest in an interaction between      I feel that a translation isn't
patrons and staff in the            sufficient, it is quite necessary
coffeehouse, which itself is a      to try to remove the 'alien'
basis for a lot of powerful story   imagery.  At another - simpler -
imagery, and, given some            level it is necessary to give the
preparatory work in character       required lujvo and the ways of de-
development of the staff, allows    scribing certain quite elementary
people with perhaps less skill or   things:  distances, relationships,
imagination to still tell a         the way things hang together.  It
reasonable story, concentrating on  might be useful to have a kind of
the Lojban and not on the creative  workshop (on the List) where the
work that not all of us do so       novice lojbo would be taught to
well.                               navigate in this verbal VR
                                    (virtual reality).  There might be
  Veijo:  There are many facets to  teams of two or more people
creativeness.  It is, of course,

working on a person or even a           (Nick:  I think it's perfectly
table to get it just so.              possible, but then, I think
                                      we're also looking for different
    (Nick:  Because I have only       things in character definition.
  vague suspicions about how this     What maketh a Hindi speaking
  might work, I propose that we,      character?  I know personally 3
  as an example, navigate on          native Hindi speakers Now what
  [Lojban List] around, oh, the       do I extract from them to
  leftmost bench nearest the          create, say, la jbosanjiv., and
  kitchen.  I'm not being             what am I missing by virtue of
  facetious; I want to see how one    the fact that I talk with these
  would go about this.  The tables    people in English, within an
  are made of old soft oak, on        Anglo culture?  If these
  which many symbols and inscrip-     characters aren't assimilated
  tions have been carved.)            into some medium we're familiar
This kind of process might help       with (regrettably or not,
people to find their own voice and    this'll have to be a more or
to cultivate the innate creativity    less Anglo cultural medium -
each one of us is sure to possess.    leave the "or less" part to us
                                      na'e glico) they'll be
  Nick:  And with what you (Veijo)    caricatures.  And of course, as
say about characterisation, too,      background, they don't have to
the solution is a broad-brush         be that detailed anyway.
sketch that allows us room to       
maneuver in; not too detailed, not    If we're to avoid a palace coup,
too vague.  Well, that can          sure, keep them Hindi and Arabic
certainly be handled.               in name; but don't expect the
  I think a Lojbanisation of the    character description to be too
brush-stroke plan will not be       adamant about their cultural
limiting at all; people do really   identity.  Exoticising these
need that help in simply keeping a  people is unsatisfactory.  They
narrative going.                    will be somewhat assimilated, into
  As the mass of writers becomes    be it merko or jbomerko.  This is
more familiar with Lojban, the      nothing to be ashamed of.  Talking
Cafe will be sketched out in        about the Arab's fiery temperament
greater detail in the story, and    or the Russian's cool intellect as
more successfully, with the end     cultural traits would be.)
result possibly quite distant from    After we have the basic scenario
what we'd anticipated at the        settled, the material can be
start.  The more expert of us       translated into Lojban, and people
reinforce those less expert in the  can set up teleconferences of
describing.                         whatever kind to help each other
                                    in writing, or whatever, but while
  Lojbab:  The plan is that there   the project is still in the
be 1 coffeehouse, and that the de-  formative stage, we must make
scription be suitably refined in    provision for those who want to
English.  People will develop       learn Lojban but haven't yet done
refined descriptions of 6           so, and for those who do not have
characters (or some other number    net access (which is 90% of the
if we abandon the 6 cultures idea   community).
- but I don't think you can have a    Be that as it may, I recognize
'cultureless person' and have the   that most of the work will be done
character detail that I think the   by people on net, and we should
others want in the shared           take advantage of the opportunity
characters), which will then be     for rapid communication.  But
voted on, which means the           please be considerate of those who
characters must also be defined in  want to participate but cannot.
English.                              If people think they can develop
                                    interesting culture-free
                                    characters, I for one will await

the first posted character de-      messages on the screen and the
scription meeting the challenge.    inevitable problems caused by
                                    widely differing time zones - it's
    (Nick:  Cool.  Veijo's          like being a semi-cyborg.
  navigation of virtual reality       I can imagine, on the other
  can be done once the description  hand, the limitations of meeting
  is in place, and the description  others only, say, once a week and
  should not be exhaustive.)        keeping all the ideas to yourself
                                    in the meantime and not hearing
  Veijo:  I certainly understand    from the others or the goings-on
those of us who were at the         (too few of us are still
LogFest and now feel that the net-  accustomed to writing real letters
people are trying to take over the  - and remembering the state of
whole Project utilizing their       postal services to-day I guess it
technological 'supremacy'.  On the  wouldn't much help).  I can think
other hand, we who are, due to      of being without the List
external factors unsurmountable,    (shudder).  Of course it is a
unable to attend the LogFests and   slightly different matter for me
are limited to electronic           here in the middle of a figurative
contacts, which - though fast -     nowhere.  The blip of an arriving
cannot compete with face-to-face    message envelope is also a symbol
contacts and classes, feel left     of the contact with you others.
out of the initial phase of the     
Project.                              Lojbab:  In this case the people
  Actually we were left a quite     in question who are not on-net
limited say in the formulation of   live 250 miles from here and have
the framework.  The views I did     no contact with any Lojbanists
present in my previous postings     except at LogFest, and when JL
were ones I should have liked to    comes out.  We may all be in the
present at the LogFest, I should    same country over here, but that
have liked to have had my say at    doesn't necessarily mean that we
that time.  Perhaps it would have   are close to each other.  On the
made no difference in the outcome,  other hand, I see your point of
but I should have felt              view too.  Your ideas will be pre-
differently.  When I was writing    sented to them, and the decision
the postings I recognized I was -   process will just take a little
at least to an extent - writing     longer.  I just wanted people to
post facto.  The writing was,       try to think of ways to keep
however, necessary to find out      everyone working towards the same
just how much elbowroom I had.      goals, when some people are stuck
These postings (as quite many of    with paper mail rates.  This is
my previous ones) must be taken     not intended to stifle the lively
with a pinch of salt.  They are in  and entertaining debate that has
a way a substitute for the process  occurred.
of thinking out loud in a class or    I don't think that the people
a group working on a problem.  The  off net are necessarily locked
postings do contain errors and      into the 6 cultures idea.  But
false starts which in a class       they did sound very committed to
would be corrected immediately.  I  the idea of these common
am at least as much talking to      characters being defined is
myself as to others on the net -    considerable detail, in English,
but the process only works if I do  before people started to write in
send the messages out.              Lojban.  The desire for detail and
  I do hope that the people who     for English, as well as the clear
feel left out of all the fun we on  desire for people to go beyond
the net do have would try - once    philosophy and into specific
in a while - to imagine themselves  detailed descriptions of people
sitting a couple of thousand        and the coffeehouse itself, is
kilometers from the nearest active  what I was trying to urge.
fellow lojbo and having only the

  It was my idea, not theirs, that  side this land/domain of Kaleva
the best way to show Hindi culture  which actually remains quite vague
is my having some Hindi-inspired    and so, in a way, the name tells
Lojban stylistics, etc.  I think    nothing of the contents - it just
the original people posing the      kind of sets the reference point.
idea were thinking more along the   So I think we might as well
lines of having the chef of the     replace 'The Kalevala' with 'la
day specialize in cooking foods of  jbotur.'  (lojbo tutra = the
his/her native culture (for which   domain of Lojban) and call the
we would need lots of lujvo and     project 'The Jbotur Project' (le
le'avla in order to have the foods  la jbotur. fitpla) or something
recognizable, if then).  Thus I     like that (for the time being).
thought that stylistics of Lojban   Here I am thinking of tutra in
would be a more creative way to     quite a figurative sense, more as
go, people will recognize the       a mental territory/domain/sphere
exoticness of the non-standard      of influence than as a
forms, and maybe even learn a       geographical territory.  I also
little linguistics about the        thought of various other
differences in the languages based  possibilities but none were as
on the Lojban forms.  But I do not  concise or descriptive.
see that we have to go too extreme    Again a couple of figurative
to bona fide culture, especially    names:
if people don't think they can
pull it off.                            la *jbolaz. ( < lojbo lanzu) =
  If people don't want to use the     the people tied together by
6 culture labels, I suspect this      Lojban
will fly, but only if the
characters are defined well enough      la jbonat. ( < lojbo natmi) =
that people writing feel they         the people with a Lojbanic
'know' the characters either          cultural background
fully, or in terms of any cultural
features/stereotypes/whatever that    I can't tell why I prefer 'jbo'
would be most noticed by your       to 'loj' in this context.  Perhaps
everyday lojbo wandering in for a   it gives the lujvo a certain
cup of coffee.                      distance from concreteness.
  I don't think that there is a     Lojban is something quite concrete
'splintering' between the non-      and 'la lojnat.' would feel too
netters and the netters.  But my    near to 'Lojbanic nation'.
responsibility is to see that one   Theoretically, of course, there is
doesn't come about.  I fully feel   no difference and the two are
Veijo's isolation in not being      interchangeable.  I'll leave it to
able to come to LogFest.  But       others to decide whether these
there are plenty of people in the   particular forms are preferable
U. S. who feel just as distant as   and whether these names are worth
you do, though they may be only     adoption to name the abstract
250 miles away instead of 8000.     entities in our writings.  I think
                                    we have/will have the entities.
  Veijo:  [On] the name of the          [Lojbab:  "*jbolaz" is an
Project: The Kalevala got to the            invalid name, because it
name of the project more by way of          contains a syllable
accident than by volition.  It is           starting with "la".
in a way quite fitting as the               However, it is
Kalevala (or the epic poems/songs           permissible, and perhaps
on which it is based) was created           even more Lojbanic, to
by numerous anonymous people                leave the name as a brivla
during several centuries.  The              "la jbolanzu".  brivla, of
'-la' at the end of the name                course, do not have the
corresponds roughly to the '-ia'            "la" restriction.  Perhaps
of 'Lojbania'.  Most of the                 we should save name
action, however, takes place out-           morphology for words

        Lojbanized from other lan-  nominal editor (forwarding mail to
        guages.                     the editor de jour who must commit
    Another alternative that works  him/herself to passing all
        is to use a different       articles through the current
        rafsi condensation that     parser, and glossing lujvo as
        avoids the problem.  In     appropriate.)
        this case "la loblaz." is
        legal because the "b"         Lojbab:  I see no problem with
        before the "la" prevents a  such a newsletter, but feel that
        morphology problem.  This   it is appropriate after the
        is a solution here, but     getting started period of the
        won't always be possible,   first two issues of JL, which will
        so I favor the selbri ap-   serve to give more people a chance
        proach in general.          to decide to participate who are
    Since there has been no         in the snailmail set.
        agreement among the par-      After the next two issues of JL,
        ticipants as to the name    I suspect that there will be
        of the cafe, in editing     enough people motivated by the
        this issue I have left all  project and skilled enough at
        names, including this       Lojban, that there will be more
        invalid one, as stated by   than just Nick and Veijo trying to
        the authors.  Ideas for     write stuff that is appropriate,
        names are welcome from all  including some people not on net.
        of the community.           When the non-netters feel comfort-
__________________________________  able in participating, then I
              ______                personally will have no qualms in
                                    letting the project go where it
  C. The Cafe *Jbolaz Newsletter    will, including letting whatever
             proposal               leaders have emerged at that point
                                    assume both control and
  Nick:  Every two months, an       responsibility.  I would hope of
electronic and snailmail [i.e       course that LLG would be offered
regular postal mail] set of Cafe    first publication rights on the
descriptions gets mailed out -      results, as well as to get as much
this is necessary to allow the      archival data as possible on this,
off-net participants to keep up to  the first organized-and-skilled
date.  For net participants, a      creative writing effort in what is
month after posting their cafe      obviously about to become a living
article on the net, they must       language.
submit a revision incorporating     
all comments made.  For those off     Veijo:  The original plan called
net, the newsletter editor          for stories told at the Cafe.  We
forwards all comments (net and      have already had differences of
snail), allowing the contributor    opinion concerning background
to post a revision, say, four       details.  Now Nick is proposing
months later.  The newsletter is    that we widen the scope to include
all-Lojban, and people (preferably  also other kinds of related liter-
on the net, and preferably gram-    ary works.  (My srinuntroci or
mar-competent) can take turns       navigations as Nick calls them are
editing it.  The newsletter is      just kind of etudes, not meant to
cafe only, other literature being   be the stories, though widening
forwarded as usual for JL           the scope will make them eligible
consideration.  Cafe articles need  for publication.)  In principle I
not be tales at all - any piece to  am for this change of policy as it
do with the cafe (like Veijo's      makes it possible also for the
navigation or my Fraktur rant) is   less advanced lojbo to participate
legit, as is any genre.  If we all  in the creative process.  It is
approve on this, the newsletter     much less demanding to produce a
can be announced in JL.  Some       snapshot of a few lines than to
central on-net personage should be

produce something like Nick's       bit stodgy in Lojban, but would
Fraktur rant.  We could have many   also help explore Lojban's
more people contributing if this    capacities more.  A catechism or
were an acceptable option.  I       an Encyclopedia reference (I know
think the non-netters would profit  I've got Joyce's Ulysses in mind
most from this change as longer     here, but bear with me) are just
stories do need more rounds of      as valid modes of expression, and
feedback from others.               just as helpful to the language.
  The question of the editorship    A fixed kind of narrative is
and of a possible editorial board   unduly constrictive, and can
must be solved.  Although           discourage many would-be
technical reasons seem to indicate  participants.  In fact, I'd be
an on-net board, other              discouraged from producing a
possibilities must also be          straightforward narrative.
considered.  The board might also     Plus, I think the opportunity of
be something quite informal.  In    using this as a springboard for
practice we would have a wide open  some satire of the Lojban movement
peer review system where in         is too good to pass up :)
principle all the lojbo on the net    Certainly the editorship need
would be doing the reviewing.  For  not be formal.  Let me attempt to
the netters this works fine but I   refine my proposal:  the editor du
think Nick's proposal concerning    jour is entrusted with the
the non-netters would require some  typographic preparation of the
fine-tuning.                        journal, the style preferred in
  This issue must be handled with   his/her number (namely, subjective
the greatest sensitivity.           minor issues of expression - lujvo
  The division of work between the  phrasing, optional punctuation and
board and the Lojban Central must   spelling, minor grammatical errors
be agreed on.  There are technical  - can be left to them).  They also
questions like handling of the      do the chasing up of
snailmail if the editors are        correspondence and editing of
mainly outside the USA (most of     discussions eventuating from
the non-netters are in the USA)     articles published in their issue,
and converting source text to text  adjusting the work accordingly and
files suitable for e-mail.          resubmitting it on the expiry date
  Last but not least are the        to the current editor for
financial questions.  I think the   publication.  What I'm saying is
ideal would be if we could find     that a given ed du jour is
independent ways of funding the     responsible for all articles first
newsletter and the related          published by him.  For example:
editorial mail so that we don't     suppose I, Mark, and Colin are eds
strain the limited resources of     du jour, and, oh, Nancy Lebovitz
the Central.  We need some          (say) submits an article that gets
estimate of the volume of the mail  corrected and published during my
and the circulation of the          editorship.  I then, and not Mark,
newsletter.  This concerns mainly   follow up any subsequent
the section of the community which  discussion and correspondence
doesn't have net access.  An        about Nancy's article, I make the
option might be to circulate the    suitable adjustments, and hand the
newsletter as an appendix to JL.    finished result, and only the more
                                    interesting highlights of the dis-
  Nick:  In creating a virtual      cussion, to Colin (say) for
world such as this, we must be af-  republication.  I suppose that
forded full freedom in our ways of  means that my norms, rather than
exploring it, and full scope for    Colin's, go for the republished
Lojbanists of all interests and     article; but at least work gets
capabilities to work with it.       shared out that way.
Extended narrative is one             The reviewing of text is of
alternative; others would not only  course carried out by all sub-
be a relief from what could get a   scribers to the newsletter, on net

or off.  But one person has to tie  Certainly we should use the net to
all the threads together at the     make sure stuff gets snailmailed
end, and take responsibility for    in the same quarter of the globe,
touching up the text in accordance  at least; that'll be a big help.
with the criticisms made; let that  One article per newsletter in JL,
person be the first publication's   but I'd like the newsletter to
ed du jour.                         eventually have some editorial
  The editor in chief takes care    independence (once again, that
of the editorial; his/her address   would be excellent PR).
appears in the newsletter as the      [As to who should be editor, it]
address to which all                basically boils down to who feels
correspondence is directed; has a   like being ed du jour (and
certain amount of veto as to        handling a lot of grammar and
article content (checking for       correspondence), and who feels
consistency and so forth), vetts    like ed in chief (who will have
the newsletter just before          little grammar, but lots of
publication, and reports to the     correspondence, supervision, and
wider community through JL as       consistency checking)?  I still
needed.                             nominate Veijo for ed in chief;
  I see no reason why stories       I'll go ed du jour, and we should
should not be mailed for sub-       have 3 to 5 such eds that we can
mission and entered into text       divide work between; they need to
files directly by the editor in     have demonstrated Lojban
chief, who is after all just one    competence, and that already
address (if this is a forbidding    narrows down the candidates to
responsibility for an ed in chief,  less than twenty.
um, I dunno, get the ed a scanner   
:)  Of course, all these proposals    Lojbab (originally private to
are for when the project is off on  Veijo):  I haven't said so, and
its own two feet and running.  For  have been biting my tongue while
now, if I understand Lojbab's mail  all the discussion is going on.
correctly, Lojban Central will      It sounds like the Lojban
still mediate.                      "creative writing" movement is
  The LLG can have all the          about to take off on its own, and
archival stuff it wants (and with   be more than mildly independent of
editorship a net activity,          "Lojban Central" with its own
there'll be plenty of it).  I'm     editor (perhaps you) and
not sure about publication rights   publication not much under my
though.  I envisage a periodical    control.  I think this is good
publication, rather than a book-    because it shows the language can
form corpus, that certainly is      and will become free of me and of
distributed by the LLG, and sold    even the concept of a centralized
at a profit to the LLG, but which   "Central".  This also allows me to
is produced by a decentralised      show that my attitude is entirely
body, which is not necessarily      opposite from JCB, who when faced
equivalent to the LLG.              with anything like this
  I suppose Lojbab's approach [on   immediately becomes extremely
finances] will do.  I dearly want   possessive and controlling.  I
a periodical publication out of     will not display such an attitude,
this, not just a corpus of text to  at all costs; our legitimacy as an
be dumped in Fairfax for people to  organization and a project
order; but it is fair that the      independent of JCB depends on it.
periodical be available by LLG's      Still I have some misgivings, in
preorder (and if you preorder       that, honestly, most of the net
enough, by subscription).  We'll    postings, even in the final draft
ask for expressions of interest in  forms, have tended to be
the next JL.  As for editorial      significantly flawed in lots of
mail...  depending on volume, the   minor details of the language.
eds as a committee may have to      The netters catch most things, but
start pooling resources.            not everything, as in the example

of your *tosmabru error in your     your developing and improving
first attempt.  Nick is the most    (rapidly) exemplification of such
voluminous writer we have, and in   a good Lojban style.
many ways the best in that he has     I don't know what the solution
demonstrated a command of many      is.  I want this type of movement
idiosyncrasies of the language,     to get started, and I want it to
but I have found that, even after   succeed.  But I worry that it is
he posts his 3rd or 4th revision    premature, in that no one,
he still has multitudinous little   including myself, has the Lojban
errors - things like failing to     skill to be an editor of Lojban
check the rafsi in a lujvo, errors  text, as such an editor needs to
of place structure, etc.  He even   be given the present skill level
has a copy of the parser, but he    among others in the community.
has told me that he merely checks   Yet, how will such an editor de-
to make sure that the text parses,  velop, if no one takes the first
and doesn't always check to make    step and tries.
sure that it is parsing the way he    Your ideas on this convoluted
intends it to be read.  Thus, for   problem are of interest to me.
example, you will find dozens of    Please keep this between us for
minor changes between his final     now, since, as I said, I don't
posted version of Aesop, and the    want my doubts to stifle debate or
version I finally printed in JL.    the formation of a movement; I
(And unfortunately Nick didn't      write to you, because I sense in
agree with all my changes, but      your writings and activities of
there wasn't time for him to        the last month or two that my
respond before publication.)        comments are not going to
  Perhaps you can see what my       discourage you.  But others have
misgiving is, then.  Will the       proven very sensitive to this
proposed new publication have an    whole silly concept of a "Central"
editor who can and will check the   (which concept I wish had never
language usage as thoroughly as it  evolved - I don't want to be a
needs to be checked?  How much      figure of authority).
authority will the editor have to   
correct and change misusages          Veijo:  Well, I think a
without getting author approval.    'Central' can have a quite legiti-
(Nick may have accepted my changes  mate role - even in the long run.
because I am 'of Central' whereas   In Finland we have something
he might be less tolerant of        called 'the language office' which
others changing his stuff.  But     cannot enforce anything but
too much editorial/authorial        follows the debates about the
dillying over individual pieces of  current usage, comments on it
work will lead to an editor who     every now and then and is there to
has to spend an excessive amount    answer questions about the correct
of time in correspondence over a    usage.  Given the nature of Lojban
relatively small amount of final    I think we'll need a kind of
text.  The text being generated in  clearing house for changes of
the community now already exceeds   grammar, place structures etc. to
what Cowan and I can read and       avoid anarchy before the language
perform such editorial checking     has stabilized.  Also, I feel that
on.                                 a seal of approval on changes will
  And of course if the editor       help to avoid some of the endless
spends too much time editing, he/-  and probably fruitless debates
she gets to spend little time       raging among the Esperantists.
writing his own stuff (a problem I  With people like you at the
personally have experienced).       Institute I have no fear of an
Thus, while Nick compliments you    overtly stifling influence.
by asking you to be editor because    I do not see the journal as
you have a natural Lojbanic style,  something completely independent.
if you actually serve as editor,    It will, of course, have an
the community will be deprived of   independent editorial policy.  It

will, however, be a purely          being forced to read what others
literary journal not containing     have written and to really think
any theoretical material - at       about it will give you a better
least not in English, perhaps in    perspective on what you yourself
the long run we'll have Lojban      are writing.  None of us has a
articles about stylistics, reviews  literary Lojbanic background and
etc.  I think JL will remain the    to find the language and refine
proper publishing channel for the   our own writing we must try to
linguistic questions arising on     explore as much of the text being
the basis of the submitted          written as possible.  Nick's
stories.                            proposal would help a lot.
  Well, I think we'll never catch     Being set up as an example may
all the errors but probably we'll   be quite counterproductive.  If
be better off than most natural     you, every time you sit down to
language journals.  I'm modifying   write, feel that you must be able
the editor program I'm using        to create something exemplary, it
presently (the one with hypertext   will - sooner or later -
capability) to do certain things.   extinguish your creativity.  You
At the moment it has vocabulary     must be able to allow yourself the
and rafsi look-up capability (if    luxury of also producing mediocre
only I'd remember to use them       or even poor text in order to be
always) and I intend to add lujvo   relaxed enough to produce
checking next.                      something worth your while.
  Cf. Nick's posting: The main        At the moment the journal can
idea was that the workload would    only succeed as a collective
be divided between the ed in chief  effort, along the lines Nick has
and the ed du jour.  The ed in      pointed out.  I think his plan
chief would write the editorial,    might work - with a few finishing
define the profile of the journal   touches.  And I think we need the
and accept the stories for          journal to give the community a
publication.  The ed du jour would  further reason d'etre as there are
do the dirty work of preparing the  very few people who'll remain
stories for publication with all    content to study a language which
the associated fuss.  Each issue    isn't actually used as a language.
might have a different ed du jour   The main purpose of the journal
- the qualified people taking       would be to encourage people to
turns - so nobody would be          write in Lojban, to start with
prevented from writing etc.  for a  simple things (I have even thought
prolonged period of time.           that good one-liners might be
  It is normal practice in          worth publishing) and gradually to
journals that the ed in chief de-   proceed to more demanding forms of
cides what gets published.  If an   expression.  After 5, maybe 10
author doesn't want to change       years we might have another
his/her text to the extent that     journal with more ambitious goals
it'll pass the editorial board,     - if the language really takes off
the text doesn't get published.     - but now we'd be content just to
On the other hand the journal       have a journal - 'la jbotur po'u
cannot publish something against    le jbocfi karni pe lei ckafybarja
the authors will.  I think the      lisri' or what ever it would be
journal ought to have a 'charter'   called.
defining the aims, the editorial      The way I see it, we aren't in
policy and the editorial            any particular hurry.  First we
procedures.  All the reviewing      must present the idea in JL and
would be public so we'd have less   poll the opinions of the
fear of unfair treatment.           community.  If the response is
  Editing detracts from writing     positive, the real work would
detracts from theoretical work      start, say, in January and we
detracts from studying detracts     ought to have the material for the
from ..., the never ending chain    first issue prepared by the end of
of choices.  On the other hand,     March.  I think we'll have enough

material by then and ample time     statements would contain a
for the editing (at the present     standard attachment declaring that
rate we'll have lots of material    the statement a) is based on the
even before the end of the year).   current parser and/or word list
Preparing this first issue will     and as such is "objective" or b)
give us enough experience to        is a considered opinion of so and
define the schedule for the later   so and as such doesn't constitute
issues realistically.               an absolute ruling/truth but a
  [Veijo's times in this paragraph  recommendation.  The main idea is
were undoubtedly predicated on the  that there would a body to which
assumption that JL would be on      you could address your questions
schedule, which it has not been,    and have reasonable expectations
and that the volume of text that    of getting a correct or at least
was written in August would         thoroughly considered answer.  Of
continue at that rate, which it     course you can ask questions on
also has not.]                      the net but then you may get a
                                    multitude of answers from which
  Lojbab:  I agree that having to   you must choose or get a single
be exemplary stifle creativity and  answer from somebody who just
productivity.  Why do you think I   thinks he knows - the question and
don't wish my job on anyone else?   the answer having passed unnoticed
It is a real bear being thought of  by those who would be better qual-
as the ultimate authority, and      ified to answer - or even no an-
having little errors from years     swer at all.  But how to avoid the
ago held up as sanctified rulings.  halo of Authority, that is the
That is why I find "Central" a      question.
distressing concept, since          
'Central' like the Pope, is never       Lojbab:  Which leads me to
wrong and must always be right.             mention the thing I was
And I am not infallible.  First             talking to Nick about [see
among equals is fine, and indeed            below for this text].  One
you-all who are most active on              problem I've never seen a
Lojban List tend to think of me             solution for is how to
this way.  But the masses that are          communicate with those
not as active consider me much              just short of trying to
more of an Authority.                       use the language.  You
                                            have noticed how little
  Veijo:  I know and I certainly            Sylvia and Dave post, and
do not envy your position.  (It's           there are several others
funny, I was actually considering           that could probably post
the phrase 'primus inter pares' in          good stuff too, but they:
some context in my previous letter      a) don't try because the
but then decided to avoid it as it          debates that ensue are in-
is sometimes also used to mean              timidating;
'first among "equals"'.)  Many -        b) don't try because they see
if not most - people have a need            this enormous volume of
for an authority and this ought to          debate on each discussion,
be taken into account.  I think             and put all their effort
we'll have to consider the role             into trying to understand
and nature of the 'Central' in the          it, not always with useful
future.  The way I see it now, we           effect.
should have a group of experienced  I think that the tons of stuff on
Lojbanists (6-12), geographically   the coffee house has probably
dispersed, in contact with each     intimidated some people from
other outside the Lojban list.      speaking up, simply because the
This group would, among other       leadership is going at it so fast
duties, work like the 'language     and furious.
office'.  I mentioned giving out      And while I am happy to see
statements either as individuals    yours and Nick's attempts at
or as a collective.  These          supporting text in Lojban, they 1)

set a standard few feel that they   no good if I invent a clever story
can match, so they don't try and    or a detailed description but lack
2) because they are in Lojban,      the means of expressing it in
people have to spend the time       Lojban.  First I must develop a
needed to read and understand (if   familiarity with the language -
possible) what has been written to  writing little banal first-grader
make sure that what they write is   stories if need be.  The way I
consistent with what has gone       work maybe the reason for the hint
before.  The latter is the reason   of lojbo style in the stories.
that I was urging people to keep    It's like putting together a
to English for the most part        puzzle or playing a game of Go.  I
during the project formation        pick a key piece - an observative,
phase.  Nick did give an English    a selbri, a sumti, an attitudinal
translation, though colloquial.     or maybe a complete bridi from
You didn't, at least that I         Nick's rant - put it on the board
noticed.  The newcomer right now    and start attaching other pieces
probably hasn't got a clue what is  around it.  The story/paragraph is
going on, and what if anything has  like an extended bridi with places
been determined/decided about the   to fill - only the places aren't
project, and what details if any    predefined but change all the time
have been added since the initial   I'm developing the story.  So it
posting.  The latter is why Karen   isn't a linear process where I'd
wanted people to write rather       have an idea and just started from
lengthy English supporting text -   the beginning - I can't sustain
so that people know about what      that yet.  This way I can add just
they are writing before they        the kind of pieces I can manage -
start, and get to save their        or change my mind halfway through
creativity for the stories.         if the going gets too rough.
                                      We are still waiting reactions
  Veijo:  Perhaps I ought to post   to the views I presented
an explanation of what I'm trying   concerning the handling of the
to accomplish with my little        subject, we have this new idea of
stories.  There is a qualitative    starting a newsletter and the
difference between my two little    related ideas concerning the
etudes and Nick's rant.  Nick's     subject material and, of course,
story needs the translation as it   the additions to the English
adds details to the original        supporting text by Nick and some
English description, my two         other people.  The adoption of the
published stories, on the other     supporting text will be a problem.
hand, actually add nothing to it,   It seems to me we are going to
so it isn't so essential to         need an editor just to select and
understand them.                    unify the accumulating material.
  What I'd like to show to just     Some of Nick's material is fine as
the people who'd like to post       a literary work but hardly stuff
something but feel they aren't      to encourage an apprentice to base
advanced enough, is that it is      a story upon.  You know my views
possible to take a small detail     and misgivings about this approach
(the smell of coffee, an inscribed  and there is no need to reiterate,
letteral) and develop a few bridi   I guess.  I know my limits and I
concerning it.  The story may be    have found a way to cope - at
quite banal, the main thing is to   least at this stage.
write something in Lojban -           The 'etudes' I'm writing now do
preferably without an original in   not - or not exactly - fit within
any natural language.  My Lojban    the original framework and perhaps
isn't so advanced that I could      it was an error to post them
take an extended passage from the   without comments to that effect
English description and transcribe  though at the time I was writing
it into real Lojban.                the first one I felt it was better
  This is why I wasn't so           to avoid comments which might be
concerned about invention - it's    misinterpreted by the non-netters

as we still don't have their        those of you who pour out
reactions to the views I had pre-   commentary on each others texts at
sented earlier.                     high volume and at rapid response
  For me these etudes are a way to  rates are doing something quite
learn, to study, and comparable to  different than we do when we read
any other stuff people are          these texts, possibly something
posting.  If we keep to the         much better than what we do.
original plan they are my way of    Indeed, I find that while I can
preparing for the project proper,   translate quickly in my head, even
if we, on the other hand, decide    the smallest grammatical or rafsi
to start the newsletter and change  error brings me to a complete halt
the scope of the material the way   because I have no error recovery
I have outlined, they may be        capability - I have to stop and do
eligible for publication.           a detailed word-for-word
                                    translation to try to figure out
  Lojbab (originally private to     what the speaker was trying to say
Nick):  I suspect that you won't    in English before I can hope to
see any of the inactive people      figure out what the Lojban 'should
contributing to the coffeehouse     have been'.)
for a while.  That effort is doing    Not sure what the solution to
stunningly well, and has taken on   all this is.  It is great to see
a life of its own independent of    all of this on-line volume, and
"Central" (thank God, since I       people seem to be signing up to
abhor the concept of a Lojban       start learning more actively in
'Central' in the first place).      the last two weeks since this
But it is suffering from the same   effort has come to life.  But you
problem that has afflicted almost   need to know that those of lower
all previous discussions of Lojban  confidence or skill are unlikely
text on net.  Some few people, in   to contribute for a while, and I'm
this case apparently you, Veijo,    not sure I have any ideas how to
Ivan, Mark, and Colin, are          remedy the situation.
churning out so much text and       
commentary on text that the others    Nick:  I still don't know what
with less time or less confidence   we can do with beginners.  I do
cannot be other-than lurkers,       note two things, however:  there
because they cannot read what has   are beginners out there with
been written as fast as new stuff   enthusiasm, who don't blanche at
is produced.  I doubt that you      the sight of Lojban sentences
will see much from Sylvia, and you  (Dryad, for example, saying "if I
might even see less simply because  don't understand a sentence, I'll
everyone else is writing more.  I   let you know); and I'd count
printed out your latest 'rant',     Andrew Smith and Veijo Vilva
and we will be going over it in     amongst the beginners, the only
Tuesday-night group next Tuesday,   difference being that they have
but Veijo's much shorter text was   applied themselves to the lan-
all that we covered last Tuesday,   guage.  It takes little more than
so I suspect they may be working    a month to turn from a lurker to a
on your text for a few weeks.       text-writer; barely three to
When we read Lojban texts here,     become a Jimbob, given the right
every single word and every single  background.  As for incentive, the
rafsi is looked up, and thus even   Cafe is a great idea, allowing
if you-and-others never made        oodles of scope, and if it doesn't
mistakes in these areas, this       get people writing, nothing will.
makes for very slow progress.       
(Nobody here has any confidence in    Lojbab:  With regard to the
our ability to read texts in        enthusiasm of beginners, I think
Lojban as opposed to in literal     that there are two or three kinds.
English translation, which in my    Some are inspired by seeing the
case I can do in my head.  I have   quantity of text, others are
long gotten the impression that     intimidated.  I am opposed to the

opening up of the coffee house      never done so at all.  I suspect
project to 'anything goes',         that the rest of us here in DC are
because the worst problem we have   the same way.  We can converse in
around here in getting people to    the language comfortably (that is
write is that we basically here     Nora, Sylvia and I), but we do so
are not creative writers - we need  by not using lujvo unless the
to be given a subject to write      place structures and the rafsi-
about - an anchor to build a ship   meanings are rather obvious from
around.  I can urge all that I      the context, because though I can
want, but the more wide open the    make lujvo in my head, the others
subject matter is, the more people  have to stop and look them up,
here get writer's block because     which kills conversation.  Thus
there are too many options and too  your rather more literary style is
little creativity - so they go      an effort to read - we have to
back to translation.  If indeed     check everything thoroughly before
there has been such an opening up   we have any idea what you are
of the project, as I understand     saying.  Since you and others who
what you write, those who proposed  post to the net are predominantly
it may take it back and make a      writers rather than speakers of
smaller, more restricted sub-       the language, this stylistic
project that they are comfortable   difference is rather difficult at
with, because otherwise they won't  the moment to overcome - you are
write anything.  (You will recall   used to taking the time to analyze
from my original posting that       stuff on-line that we cannot and
Karen Stein, who really took        do not do.  By comparison, I
charge here at LogFest on this      suspect it will take us 2 weeks
thing was adamant about the need    merely to go through your latest
to fully define the coffeehouse     text and understand it as Lojban.
setting and the common characters     Part of the effect of our
in English so that everyone         different styles of language use
understood the common ground        is that people who do all their
before they started to write.  She  work on-net are tolerant of
is a creative writer, but she said  different types of errors than us
that she could not write the kind   conversationalists.  I find that
of stories she wants without        your errors caused by not looking
having this firm structure to       up rafsi and gismu bring me to a
build off of - at least not if she  complete halt, because I cannot
wanted to end up with anything      error-correct those type of errors
that would tie in to what anyone    quickly.  Yet people seem to read
else decided to write.  And the     and respond to your stuff with
group-ness of the enterprise was    comments at a variety of levels
clearly the thing that excited her  quite quickly compared to what we
about it.)                          manage here.  They seem to
  As for the 'who is writing'       concentrate on tanru and lujvo,
question - the people here are      and kind of absorb the grammar in
totally overwhelmed even by the     passing having figured out the
two pieces of text that have been   meaning by correlating the tanru
posted.  People here feel the need  into a gestalt meaning that
to digest word-for-word everything  dominates the sentence.
that gets written before            Meanwhile, we get stuck on the
responding to it.  Both Cowan and   missing "cu" that leads to total
I, arguably among the most skilled  nonsense.
in the language, especially           The point of this is that if
technically, no longer even bother  Cowan and Lojbab can be in-
to try to read Lojban text that is  timidated out of trying to read
posted.  It takes too much work;    your stuff, that should tell you
we file it away under the 'someday  something about what happens to
...' file, whereupon I eventually   David Young, with a gismu
pull some of it out when I go to    vocabulary of 100 after a long
produce a JL issue; Cowan has       summer of LogFlash, and Guy

Garnett, who is still stuck at      .i rancindu jubme
around the 50 level, and has to     .i seldandu lo vrici to'erninda'i
look up virtually every gismu even    noi mi na djuno zo'e ke'a
after the whole summer of classes.  .i selzvati ji'ipano zutse remna
People here, being grossly mono-    .i srotanxe loi ckafi lei mudri
lingual, get really stuck on lack   .i vrici
of vocabulary. Until we get people  .i mi visyfacki fi pa lo poi loi
up to a comfortable vocabulary        remna na zutlamji ke'a ku'o
level, no one will write anything,    jubme goi ko'a
and people will tend to avoid even  .i mi co'a zutlamji ko'a
trying to read things.              .i ko'a lamji le nunjupca'u
  But keep things going.  It may    .i le jukpa cu selviska gi'e
not be what people had in mind,       jupfinti de.a'ucu'i
but things in Lojban are finally    .i mi pensi.a'e loi selpinxe co
taking on a life of their own,
which is the important thing.       .i ckafypanci fi mi.ui
     ________________________       .i ckafypanci
                                    .i .ui.o'u
  Text and comments elucidating     .i sriku'a
further description of Scenario #2
                                      Nick: Vilva arrives in the
  [Translations, where they exist,  ckafyzda.  Finally!  It's such a
and commentaries on the language    good navigation too, I feel guilty
aspects of the Lojban writings      for proceeding to propose some
will be found in the translations   fleshing out of the scenery in
section.  A computer-generated      English.  And of course, the
English gloss of Veijo's two        Lojbanisations of our English
writings will also be found there.  specs should not be translations,
No proper English translation       but transformations, as Veijo has
exists for either Veijo's writings  rightly pointed out.  Here goes
or Iain's second writing.]          [italicized text is from
                                    Description #2]:
  Veijo's original text, mentioned
several times above, was the first  As I walked under the crossed
attempt to add to the initial       climbing axes, and into the
description #2 provided as a        coffeehouse, I felt I was in a
starting point.  Veijo's            place designed to give one the
commentary above indicated that he  feeling of putting on an old
feels that his text adds no new     comfortable pair of shoes.
information to the coffee house
description.  On the other hand,      Veijo speaks of ".ui.o'u";
his attempt to do a simple Lojban   that's the feeling I want in the
writing based on that description   cafe too.  A boisterous place,
may provide some indication of how  sure, with lots of emphasis on the
people will use the descriptions    "ka vrici", but also a very
provided.  Furthermore, Nick and    "mela'ezo.i'u" place.  The door is
Iain's writings below reference     nothing too fancy; plain, wooden,
back to things Veijo says in this   touch heavy, not pretentious.  The
piece.                              climbing axes certainly have been
                                    positioned informally (maybe even
     le la vei,on ckafybarja        not perfectly symmetrically?)
      srinuntroci xipa xici
                                    The benches were made of old soft
  ni'o sriku'a                      oak, in which many tales and
.i ckafybarja                       symbols had been carved.  On the
.i mi zvati le vorstu gi'e          bench I was seated was the
  terpanci loi ckafi da.uicai       inscription:  "Members of the
.i mi ca ze'upunai.oi sumne da      first sandpit expedition to find
.i mi dzukla le jbustu gi'e         the first digger, or traces
  ctacarna                          thereof - 198?"  The table also

bore other marks of former patrons  staircase would be a touch too
who had drank their selections and  imposing.
transcribed their feelings with
pitons.                             Underneath these visible artifacts
                                    were the dour reminders of the
  What with the suggested rural     primary business of this
setting and the benches, I'm put    establishment-coffee.  There were
in mind of soft damp oak, and       full wooden bins of coffee from
murky late afternoon light.  I      just about every place in the
don't think the place need be       world, with or without caffeine.
spotlighted, in any case; the       The cook was visible to all and in
can't-look-outside windows will     the process of developing the
do.  There's not just tales and     latest creation on the current
symbols, of course; there's a lot   menu, and not without some debate
of good old fashioned graffiti (no  about the amount of spice the
need to be too solemn about it.)    particular dish required.
The place is, I suggest, small and
intimate, with the "vrici"            The menu is on display just to
paraphernalia on the walls          the right of the partition behind
haphazard and competing for space,  which the cook is visible;
rather than formally set out,       handwritten, with the le'avla
museum style.  No more than ten     defined at the bottom of the list
benches (reasonably sized,          in the six source languages.  The
though).                            coffee bins are along the walls, I
                                    take it?  (Beneath the artifacts.)
The walls were littered with        The waiter does some serving, but
climbing apparel and debris in      for the most part sits with the
what might charitably have been     customers and socialises.  The
termed a collage.                   cook has most of his/her arguments
                                    with the dishwasher, sometimes
  See?  I visualised correctly :)   carrying the arguments outside the
And some of the parts of the        kitchen and asking for support in
collage are downright incongruous.  his debates amongst hapless
I would not be surprised, for       customers, slapstick-style (hm,
example, if a certain pea on a      I'm going against the rotation
cushion lies in a corner, with      thing - others may countersupport
some inscription to do with a       it); I don't know what a busboy is
Kunstkammer.  Several postcards,    either; and the Manager (and the
too (I don't think this is being    sixth man/woman out for the night)
too explicitly outside-world-       sit together and overlook the
bound), from Cafe Cairo, The        scene.  I don't know if it's
Loglan Sogrun, Burnley F.A...       worthwhile giving the Manager
                                    his/her own table, and a small
There were the rusting remains of   table rather than a bench at that;
pitons and hooks abutting           but I would like the Manager to be
practically new lengths of the      a bit more formal than the rest, a
latest high test rope.  Opposite    voice of authority amidst the
the door from which I had entered   chaos, and somewhat set apart - a
was a ladder - a climbing ladder,   big gun in a story, held in
of course.  The ladder reached to   reserve.
the ceiling, and a solid-looking      This might be a biiiiit silly,
trap door that made me wonder of    but maybe a small bookcase of NL
the unknown relics that lay         dictionaries and Lojban references
beyond, and the stories they might  on the side?  And the cafe, I
hold.                               thiiiiink, should be a bit of a
                                    bastion of lojbanism, or at least
  The ladder stays, but it has      lojbanism-aware - which would give
nothing to do with "le lisri be le  us the opportunity of satirising
serti"; an imposing marble          traits of the current or future

community in it.  The visitors, of  better, and "ckafybriju" is right
course, don't have to particularly  out.  Aha! "ckafybarja"!  That's
like or think about Lojban - it's   really much better, I think.
by no means an exclusive venue.     "barja" even has a place for
                                    what's served, which is filled, in
This happy riot provided the        the lujvo/tanru, by "ckafi"
counterpoint to the hissing, and    (though other things may be served
boiling of a near endless stream    as well).  I think this is an
of coffee beans in response to the  important change to make, even if
always cold, often frustrated, and  "ckafyzda" has acquired some
very determined clientele. . .      sacredness.  It's only a week or
                                    two old, and it's broken.  Please
  Damn! I knew they were cold and   let us switch to "ckafybarja".
damp! :)                            
  OK.  If you all don't blow up at    Veijo replies:  In this case I
this, we can go navigating some     definitely wanted the connotation
more...                             of dwelling or even home-coming.
                                    I was thinking along the lines of
  Veijo, on the coffee bins,        a cafe where people are not
wrote:  ".i patxu loi ckafi lei     perhaps quite dwelling but
mudri"                              spending a lot of time telling
                                    stories and having conversations.
  Colin:  Why "lei mudri"?          At least in some parts of Europe
    Veijo:  I'd say they are        cafes (especially student cafes)
        wooden but can't be sure    and like are almost a second home
        these days.  (The coffee?   to some people.
        :)                            Also implied was a cultural
Colin:  I don't get Veijo's answer  dwelling place.
to my question here, so probably      "ckafybarja" is better as a
he didn't understand my question.   general lujvo (and corresponds to
I was querying "lei" as opposed to  usage in some languages, e.g.
"loi".                              Finnish before American English
    Veijo:  I tried to use 'the     domination) but...
        mass described ...'           There is nothing sacred about
        instead 'the mass really    "ckafyzda" but it may match the
        is ...' to express          underlying ideas much better.  If
        concisely the idea that     we are stacking the place with
        the bins looked like wood   connotative paraphernalia we may
        but might be something      as well tack on a few more
        else on closer inspection.  connotations.
  Mark on 'ckafyzda':  Veijo in       Mark responds:  Sorry, I'm
[an early version of] his first     unconvinced.  You say you're
text used: "ni'o zdani"             trying to get warm fuzzy feelings
  I might have thought "dinju"      of homecoming by using "zdani",
would be a better choice.  "zdani"  but "zdani" doesn't have that
implies some sort of dwelling-      meaning either.  The lair of a
place, and you're leading into      dragon is a "zdani".  A beehive is
this with these observatives as "A  a "zdani".  "zdani" means "place
house.  A coffee-house...", where   of residence/habitation of....",
habitation isn't implied.  For      not implying any hominess nor lack
that matter, is "ckafyzda"          thereof.  Even if the manager
malglico?  It expands to "ckafi     chances to live in the place, (and
zdani" = "coffee-ish nest/house/-   thus it may be proper to describe
bivouac/dwelling-place".  Most      it as a "zdani" incidentally),
coffeehouses aren't inhabited by    what we are describing the place
anyone, they're solely places of    as is a tavern or bar or other
business.  "ckafyzarci" implies a   sort of informal restaurant
more of a store where you buy       wherein coffee is served.  That
coffee beans to me, so that's no    is, "le barja zo'e loi ckafi" ->

"le ckafi barja" -> "le ckafy-      later and the images of times long
barja".  Now, the proprietor(s) of  past.
the place, perhaps, might try       
naming it "la ckafyzda" (note the     Veijo to Mark about coffee and
article), as that would be a        tea:  Used to be a tea-drinker
tolerable name for such a place,    myself but Finland is one of
but as a description, it doesn't    heaviest coffee drinking countries
wash.  I don't care how much time   in the world and getting a decent
people spend there:  call it what   brew of tea turned out to be too
it is - "lo barja".                 much of an effort in the long run
  Connotations are fine in          so I gave up around the age of 25
describing the place, in the ob-    and started drinking coffee.  I
jects you put in there, etc., but   still enjoy properly brewed decent
if you call something by what it    teas, though.
isn't, people won't know what         Now about "loi selpinxe ckafi".
you're talking about.  "ckafyzda"   Does it bring to mind the beverage
would imply maybe the home of a     or the coffee beans/powder the
coffee grower (rotten lujvo for     beverage is made of?  I had the
it, though), or a coffee-colored    beverage in mind and I want to
house (also not so great), or a     have the gismu "ckafi" in a
place where coffee lives (decent    position where I can tack the
lujvo) - yes, that's probably the   attitudinal on it.  Well, now I
most likely interpretation.  Just   have it:  "loi selpinxe co
as "remzda" is used to mean".  What do you think?
"house" (i.e.  typical habitation   Better?  Or was it you just
of human beings - some cultural     couldn't imagine someone thinking
bias there, no?), "ckafyzda" seems  more the beverage than the actual
to conjure up some kind of          act of drinking?  Many a time have
habitation for coffee (as if it     I been sitting and enjoying the
were a living being).  Maybe those  fragrant smell of tea, this being
big burlap sacks that coffee beans  an essential part of the total
are kept in, or a cannister on      enjoyment when the tea isn't just
your shelf.  In either case, the    something nondescript.  Same goes
word would be very poetic, but      for coffee.  There are brews and
more for its implication that       BREWS.  And think of the Japanese
coffee "lives" anywhere than for    tea ceremony, to take an extreme
connotations of hominess on         example.  In the ceremony the act
"zdani".                            of drinking is really almost
Veijo to Colin about the coffee:    
  I'm not too keen a coffee           Nick was next to enter the
drinker.  The smell came in kind    coffee house [A free translation
of naturally with the coffee bins   of Nick's text will be found on
and all, perhaps childhood          page 60]:
memories of freshly ground coffee
at my aunt's shop where I used to     .i mi se lidne la vei,on.
hang a lot.  If the specs had       ba'acu'i lenu nerkla le la loblaz.
called for a taverna I'd have       kafybarja  .i mi sutra joiku'i.o'a
thought of something else to fill   banli cadzu pa'o la'ele cravro noi
the first 10 seconds.  The sense    tilju je jadycau  .i lenu mi pu
of smell carries a lot of           kargau le vorme cu mlirocnandu
connotations and brings fore        gi'e sacri'a lenu mi catke  .i le
memories...  The smell of           te vorme cu se gusni lo lecydo'i7
pezyckafi is the first reminder
telling you that you have come
(back) to where you belong.  You    ____________________
can't put your finger on it during
the first few moments but it hits   7Lojbab:  Nick kind of jumped the
you, sometimes like a sledgeham-    gun, using the rafsi "do'i" for
mer.  The visual recognition comes  the new gismu "donri" ("daytime")
                                    prior to either being announced

milxe gi'e se kufra cmalu  .i       je'eki'e pendo .u'u si
panomei sa'enai.a'acu'i loi jubme   ba'edo'u.u'u .u'ise'i go'i lo
.i mi zutse ne'a lo na'e se tsejbi  tcati li'uЇ  .i le be'ipre goi
jubme {poi diklo le kumfa kojna     ko'a cu bacru ®lu go'i lo tcati pe
gi'e stula'i le vorme ku'o} gi'e    le'a ?ma li'uЇ  .i mi ®lu .aicu'i
catlu loi zvapre  .iza'a la         do ?ma stidi li'uЇ  .i ko'a ®lu
vei,on. zutse vi le ragve kojna     .e'a la kukytcat. noi vi purlamrai
gi'enaipe'i zvaju'o mi  .i ra       terve'u li'uЇ  .i mi ®lu  .i'e ko
zanfri .i'e.o'enai loi panci be     bevri le la kukytcat. tcati li'uЇ
loi vi ckafi  .i mi zmanei loi      .i ko'a bacru ®lu baziba'o go'i
tcati gi'e.o'o.aucu'i denpa lenu    .oinai li'uЇ gi'e cliva mu'i lenu
lo djabe'ipre cu jundi mi  .i       bevri nagi'e tavla lo drata zutse
milxe savru gi'e ruble nungei       .ipujecabo lu'i le jukpa kuce le
.iku'i mi cabdei me ®lu .i'inai     patlu'i lu'u nevi le jupku'a cu
li'uЇ vau.u'uru'ero'a  .i lei       cladu joi selzdi dabysnu  .i le
bitmu cu se jadni loi carmi bo      jukpa cu so'uroi batkla gi'e te
vrici joi na'e simlanxe be ja'i le  jivrei le se casnu fo lei zvati
tcaci  .i le re cpare ka'amru poi   .i.aucai mi na ve preti  .i le
simkruca se punji fi le cravro      barjyjatna noi dasni lo jikri'i
gapru na minrysarxe .u'iru'e  .i    taurgunma ca tavla la vei,on.  .i
na go'i fa loi drata ke bitmu se    mi xance rinsa la vei,on. i ko'a
punji ne mu'u lo dembi poi vreta    spuda rinsa gi'e nupre lenu bazi
lo kicne ku'o jo'u lo slabu         kansa mi kei mi  .i loi cnino cu
tcityta'o ne secu'u ®lu vi xagrai   nerkla gi'e cladu rinsa loi no'e
loi tauzba pe levi tcadu li'uЇ      cnino noi na'oca'o te lisri  .i mi
ge'ujo'u lo befydai noi te ciska    na .ai cabdei ve lisri  .i mi
zo sindereluud.  .i mi ca jundi le  .e'icu'i cabdei xebni la fraktur.
jbusfe pe mi  .i te ciska so'ida        __________________________
ne bau la lojban. e la
bangrnesperanto .e le glibau          Veijo followed up with a second
.e.ueru'e le dotco  .i le dotco cu  text, in part reacting to Nick's
se ciska ta'i la fraktur  .i mi     effort.  This may show the type of
xebni la fraktur  .i mi djica       interaction between characters of
{lenu ciska fi le jbusfe fe ®lu mi  different writers that may be
la fraktur xebni mi'e kilrois.      possible, even if no one goes so
li'uЇ kei} gi'enai ca ponse lo ve   far as to initiate a direct
ciska befi loi mudri  .i mi ka'e    dialogue between the characters (a
lebna lo cpare ja bisli kilmru le   possibility that Nick comments on
zunle bitmu  .i mi co'i morji le    afterwards) [See page 58 for a
xajmi pe lei bisli kilmru jgari     computer generated gloss]:
relcisyge'upre  .iku'i lenu le
xajmi cu jboselsku na se snada mi        le la vei,on ckafybarja
.isemu'ibo mi pensi sanga le se           srinuntroci xire xire
finti be la be'o pe
me'e ®lu le la tom. gusta li'uЇ     ni'o mi penzutse.o'u
.i lenu go'i cu se dicra lenu lo    .i to'erninda'i fa lemi jubme
djabe'ipre noi .uacu'i xindo cu     .i ciska da le jbusfe .ije mi
klama mi gi'e cisma bacru ®lu       catlu da.a'u
cticpe ?ma doi lojbo ga'icu'i       .i lerfu la fraktur.ue
li'uЇ  .i mi co'a se spaji catlu    .i mi morji fi loi lerfu be la
le be'ipre  .i mi nelci le be'ipre  fraktur.
.i mi mutce nelci co se trina le    .i morji
be'ipre ja'e lenu mi na spuda ri    .i mi puzuki zvati le ckule gi'e
.iseki'ubo ri cmila joiku'i milxe   caca'a tcidu
bo se fanza bacru ®lu be'ebe'e      .i mi tcidu le cfika be le ze
xaupre zo'o ctidji ja pixydji ?ma   bruna bei la Aleksis.kivis.
li'uЇ  .i mi spuda bacru ®lu           po'u le natmytercfi
                                    .i le poi le drata be mi cu tcidu
__________________________________  fi ke'a ku'o selpapri cu te prina
publicly or appearing in any lists  loi
that people can look up.

   lerfu be la antik.               le vorme fi'o te mlixra le janco
.i lemi selpapri goi ko'a te prina  ku'o) sera'a ?ma pezyjicla li'uЇ
loi lerfu be la fraktur.            .i mi vi le zdani pu zutse co
.i lenu tcidu de pe ta'i la         cando  .icabo mi terbei lo notci
fraktur. kei pu nandu mi gi'e ca    poi ve cusku le se du'u lu'o la
frili                               vei,on. joi la nitcion. lu'u goi
.i mi djica lenu tcidu fi ko'a kei  ko'a noi zvati le kafybarja po'u
mu'i lenu lemi patfu                la *jbolaz. cu djica lenu penmi mi
   puzu prina loi lerfu loi ko'a    vi ra  .i ®lu ?ma ?mo li'uЇ na se
papri                               spuda  .i ko'a jundi casnu la
.i lemi patfu ze'u prina            fraktur.  .i mi zo'u la fraktur.
.i lenu ri go'i kei nanca li vobi   no'e cinri  .i mi co'a zutse ne'a
.i kiku mi catlu le vi lerfu be la  lo jubme poi lamji le me ko'a ku'o
fraktur.                            gi'e denpa lenu se zvaju'o da no'u
.i lerfu                            ga ko'a gi lo selfu noida'i bevri
.i bacru.ue zo coi                  loi ckafi mi
.i barjyjatna.a'a                     ni'o lemi jubme cu xekri seja'e
.i la nitcion. co'ava se zvaju'o    loni to'ercitno  .i ra ve srakysku
mi                                  zo mi ce'o prami bu ce'o ®lu le
.i ra xance rinsa mi .ije mi spuda  cmacrnalgebra li'uЇ  .i mi nelci
rinsa                               le jubme  .i mi de'a morji fi la
.i la nitcion. caca'a xebni la      vei,on. .e la nitcion. gi'e co'a
fraktur.                            pensi  .i mi si'a se cinri so'a
                                    klesi be lo sinxa ciste ra'anai
  Nick comments:  There's going to  ledu'u vo'e ge'ikau te javni mu'u
be a good tale, I think, in an      le sucta cmacrnalgebra gi mecritli
old-timer at the cafe explaining    mu'u loi rarna ja rutni bangu  .i
how the devil the Fraktur got       la'edi'u mukti lenu mi tadni la
there in the first place...         lojban. kei noi ki'u ke'a mi zvati
  I feel veeery hesitant in any     la jbolanzu
interaction with the staff with       no'i lo be'ipre cu klama co
their personas still not settled.   veirgau lemi selcpe po'u lo barda
If people don't like the Manager    carmi bo ckafi gi'ebabo nalsirkla
(and "jatna" does seem to be the    mo'ize'oku na'e mo'ifa'a le
only word we have for "boss" or     jupku'a  .i .uaru'e simlu fa lenu
"manager") being imperious,         ko'a ze'apu naje ca zvaju'o mi  .i
they'll be very unhappy if I        mi'a simxu rinsa  .i la'aru'e mi
portray him like that.  So for      bazi facki le krinu be lenu
now, let's not probe into the       sutrygau
background characters too deeply.    _______________________________
  The even greater danger is in
sketching interactions with Real      Nick:  Very cool, Iain.  I
Life people.  Veijo and I are       wonder why we got you to the
about to start talking, and I'd     *Jbolaz?  Hmmm?  :)
like neither of us to make              [Lojbab:  With any luck, the
potentially annoying presumptions     rest of us will find out in
about the other's persona.  So one    JL18.]
should be wary in this kind of
thing.                                ______________________________
                                      [Next follows the first text of
  Iain then joined in with the      the type that was actually asked
following [a rough translation of   for - an English elaboration of
the Lojban will be found on page    setting and/or characters.  Both
63]:                                David Bowen and Veijo Vilva, whose
                                    effort follows David's, have
      la jbolanzu kafybarja         proposed characters for the cafe
                                    staff.  You are welcome, indeed
  ®lu .ie.a'a .ie.o'onairu'e        encouraged, to comment on these,
(cu'usa'a mi noi caki vilkla zo'a

possibly suggesting changes or      English shows most of the signs of
elaborations, or to propose your    British English, it shows no signs
own - remember that we need a half  of any other European accent being
dozen or so to staff the cafe.      mixed in.  His German, French and
  We also need lots more detail on  Italian are equally
the layout of the cafe, what is     indistinguishable from those
located where, what is the size of  spoken by native speakers and he
the various rooms, whether the      has shown no problems conversing
'cooking-space' (as it was put in   with visitors from other parts of
Veijo's first writing) is a         Europe and Asia.
separate room, etc.                 
  All submissions (subject to         Veijo:  This is a description of
space) received prior to 5 March    la xiron, the first co-worker at
(15 March if computer-readable -    la jbolanzu - Cafe Jbolanzu.  No
via email or MS-DOS diskette) will  one knew his real name and the
appear in JL18, after which will    name he had picked for himself
commence voting if we get too many  after learning Lojban was a kind
or too-conflicting descriptions.]   of pun - if you bothered to play
                                    games with names.  I don't tell
  David Bowen:  The owner and       much about the other members of
manager [or perhaps just the owner  the personnel as I didn't know
or just the manager] of the Cafe    them so well and, besides, I want
Chalet is a man of mystery.  It's   to leave the pleasure of
easy enough to see him, either      describing them to the other
hiking among the hills surrounding  patrons of the Cafe.  There were
the village or conversing with the  quite a few of us literary types
customers as he makes his rounds.   spending our evenings there so
But any questions about his life    someone else ought recollect
before coming to the village are    enough of that time to relate
met with vague replies and a quick  about it.
shift in the topic of                 I do not yet know whether xiron
conversation.  There are stories    will interest you enough to make
that he used to be a climber        him a permanent member of the
himself.  A climbing accident, so   staff.  So I shall tell you mostly
the story goes, which killed his    about the first impressions he
lover while the two of them were    made on people and add more
attempting a major climb led to     details later on if required.
his retirement from the sport.  It               _______
is said that much of the equipment
which decorates the interior of       He arrived one dark, windy
the Chalet is his.                  evening in November.  No one
  In appearance he's a big man,     noticed him at first.  He was just
with light brown hair and green     a tall shadow at the doorway,
eyes.  In summer his ruddy          standing there, quietly observing
complexion turns to a golden tan    the room.  He stood there for a
and his hair lightens to the point  while, motionless, as if half
where it almost matches his skin    asleep.  There were groups of
color.  On the slopes, he is often  people sitting at the tables,
seen in lederhosen and a green      drinking coffee, chatting with
alpine hat.  While in the Chalet,   each other.  Someone glimpsed at
these are replaced by conservative  the door, started to turn away but
gray or navy business suits.  Only  changed his mind and took a closer
his bright paisley ties and an      look.  Others noticed his curios
occasional brightly colored vest    gaze and also turned to look.  A
show hints of the boy hidden        silence fell.  A stranger wasn't
beneath the serious businessman.    too common those days.  The man at
  Attempts to determine his         the door seemed to wake up.  He
background from his speech have     took off his hat, wiped his
been unsuccessful.  Though his      forehead with a sleeve and started
                                    towards the nearest unoccupied

table with a heavy step.  He          The stranger was looking at the
hesitated for a moment before       approaching man.  Japanese?  No,
sitting down, glanced appre-        more likely Chinese.  What was he
hensively around and threw down     doing in these parts?  Well, none
the rucksack from his shoulder.     of his business.  He had been lis-
His hand was gently stroking the    tening to the sound of the locals
wood of the table and he had again  talking.  There was a curious note
a far-away look on his face.  A     in their speech and he had been
murmur of voices began to fill the  unable to recognize the few words
air as people lost their initial    he was able to discern.  He just
interest in the newcomer.  Only     hoped the Chinaman would be able
the most curious ones were          to communicate in some language he
stealing glimpses at him every now  knew.
and then.                             "Good evening, sir.  Welcome to
  There was nothing special about   Cafe Jbolanzu.  Quite chilly
the stranger except perhaps his     outside, isn't it?  Would you like
quietness.  He seemed to be         to have something hot to drink?
content just to sit there and       Coffee or tea perhaps?"
observe the other patrons.  He was    Something in the appearance of
a dark, slim man of indeterminate   the stranger made the owner choose
age and origin, face                English instead of Lojban to
expressionless but not inscrutable  address him.  A slight change in
in an oriental way.  He had         the attitude of the stranger's
obviously come afoot as his boots   shoulders seemed to indicate
were covered with dust but somehow  relief.  The Chinaman felt easier.
he didn't seem to be an outdoor       There was an almost
type.  Veins were visible on the    imperceptible delay before the man
backs of his hands but the hands    answered.  He wasn't actually
were soft, apparently not used to   surprised, it just always took him
manual work.                        moment to switch into English.
  The owner of the Cafe was busy    Now he knew he'd be able to cope.
in the kitchen and hadn't noticed     "Oh, yes.  Good evening.  Yes,
the arrival of the stranger.  He    it is.  Could you bring me some
himself had drifted quite recently  tea, please.  Have you got any
into the village and hadn't yet     green teas?  Gunpowder?  I'd
succeeded in hiring anyone to help  really appreciate that.  A whole
at the Cafe so he had to serve at   pot of it."
the tables in addition to cooking.    There was no smile on his face
Presently he lifted the frying pan  even when he was speaking, just a
to the edge of the stove, wiped     relaxed softness.  He was at peace
his hands and started his round     with himself and had obviously no
among the patrons.                  need to affect others one way or
  He noticed the stranger almost    another.  The Cafe owner felt
immediately.  The stranger was      strangely at home with the man.
looking straight at him but gave      "Well, I think I have got some
no sign at all of noticing him.     tucked away somewhere.  Isn't much
There was no rudeness in the        demand for it, you know.  Will
stranger's gaze when he at last     take a while.  Thank you, sir."
noticed the approaching Cafe          The Chinaman left with a slight
owner, just quiet waiting, no       bow.  The man sat waiting, still
smile, no irritation.  The Cafe     stroking the table every once in a
owner felt a slight discomfort      while, regarding the others
which reminded him of the times he  absentmindedly.  The din of the
had had to address the head master  conversations grew louder and his
at school.  Had someone asked he    thoughts wandered.
would have been unable to tell        There had been a time when he
what exactly was the reason for     had preferred quieter places, much
this uneasiness.                    quieter.  He remembered a
                                    particular one in some provincial
                                    capital in the East.  It was a

large tea-house with tables for       "Excellent.  Thank you.  Maybe
more than a hundred people.  He     in a moment.  Tell me, I've been
had spent many an evening sitting   wondering, what is the language
there alone at his table sipping    these people are talking in?  Who
his tea and thinking.  There were   are they really?"
two other regular customers, the      The Chinaman paused for a moment
three of them coming there for a    before answering.  He wasn't quite
year or so a few times a week.      sure what to tell the stranger.
Each had his own corner, they       He himself was just beginning to
never spoke to each other during    grasp the language spoken here and
all the time he frequented the      had to formulate his answer most
place.  The Japanese waitresses     carefully.
sometimes told the latest news of     "Well, sir, the language is
Sensei-san, Teacher, as they        called Lojban but I guess the name
called one of the patrons.  It was  tells you nothing.  I myself knew
really very discreet, no gossiping  quite many languages before coming
at all, they'd say: "Sensei-san is  here but I'd never heard about it.
tired today.  He's had a rough      It is a constructed language not
day." or something like that.  And  related to any natural language -
he'd sit there sipping his          living or dead.  Hard to explain
Japanese tea, eating perhaps a      in a few words if you aren't a
cupful of rice with a slice of      linguist.  These people are
cucumber dipped in soy sauce and    practitioners and students of
looking at Sensei-san correcting    Lojban who gather here to tell
exam papers.  It was a quiet time   stories or just to chat with each
in his life.  Later came more       other.  As a matter of fact, the
turbulent times but they too had    name of this Cafe is 'la jbolanzu'
passed into semi-oblivion.  He'd    which means something like 'The
been wandering around for years     Clan of Lojban'.  It seemed to be
now, observing people, almost       a fitting name as most of my
always an outsider.                 patrons are Lojbanists."
  There was a sluggish discussion     Lojban.  The stranger looked
going on at many tables.  Quite     around.  Not an ethnic language -
many people were just listening to  that explained many things which
the others and most of the          had been bothering him already
speakers didn't seem to be very     before he had reached the Cafe.
fluent.  It was as if they had      Lojban.  The name brought no
just recently learned the           recollections what so ever into
language.  A few were narrating a   his mind even though he had been
longer story but they were quite    studying linguistics sometime in
often interrupted by one or         the remote past.  Languages had
another of the listeners who        always interested him and he knew
seemed to be asking something but   a few words of quite many lan-
curiously there was no change in    guages.  Some of the languages he
their intonation.  The stranger     had learned while wandering from
was perplexed.  Where had he        place to place in search of -
stumbled?                           well, he really didn't know what.
  The Chinaman returned with a      Some he had studied at various
large teapot and a Chinese rice     schools and colleges during the
cup.  He put the cup in front of    more quiet epochs of his life.
the stranger, poured some olive       "I see.  Thanks."
green tea into it and set the pot     He had done many things and
on the table.                       studied many subjects during the
  "Here you are, sir.  Anything     years since leaving home - some
else, sir?"                         things out of necessity, some out
  The man raised the cup to his     of curiosity.  Here was something
lips, took a sip and sighed.  He    new.  He hesitated.  He had
then lowered the cup and looked up  intended to continue across the
to the waiting Cafe owner.          mountains in the morning.  He
                                    wasn't exactly going anywhere but

there were some old cities in the   Newcomers often at first thought
Plains and he had thought he'd      he was unfriendly as he didn't
spend a few days just enjoying the  smile when he greeted them and
atmosphere there.  It was a long    later on many felt the same
time since he had sat in a Bier-    uneasiness the Chinaman had felt a
stube drinking a proper black       year ago.  Perhaps it was the
draught beer, sweet with the taste  initial impression of self-as-
of caramel malt.  But now he had    suredness and reservedness which
bumped into something unexpected.   only gradually was replaced by a
  The Chinaman was leaving.         more realistic, more mixed one.
Someone had beckoned him to a         Xiron was mostly very quiet and
table across the room.  The         even later on in the evenings when
stranger nodded just slightly.      the staff was mixing with the
  He was eyeing the other           customers he'd just sit there and
customers with a renewed interest.  listen to others talking, rarely
He raised the cup and smelled the   expressing himself.  When he did
fragrance of the tea while          there was a certain finality in
pondering the situation.  He'd      what he said.  He might err but
have to find some employment if he  mostly his facts and opinions had
was to stay for more than a few     a ring of truth about them which
days.  Perhaps the Chinaman could   made it hard for the others to
help?  He was prepared to do        disagree.  Sometimes he got on his
almost anything within his          hobbyhorse and then there was no
capacity for board and lodgings     keeping him.  Luckily the
and a reasonable amount of free     occasions were quite rare.
time.  He'd stay till he felt it      He seemed to know very much or
was again time to go.               at least of very many different
  The Chinaman had apparently gone  subjects though if you poked
to the kitchen which wasn't         deeper you might find that
visible to where the stranger was   sometimes he knew just a handful
sitting.  The questions would have  of key facts, nothing more
to wait.  An elderly man at a       profound.  He didn't often
nearby table stood up and           volunteer the information.  It was
approached him...                   almost as if he had considered
              ______                many things not worth mentioning
                                    without a specific reason.  Just
  A year had gone by.  He called    knowing wasn't enough.
himself xiron now.  There was no      The Chinaman now liked him.
specific reason for the name - he   Many times they had sat late at
had just made it up one night in    night quietly sipping tea, not
early June when he was trying to    talking much, each deep in
memorize a batch of rafsi.  Though  reverie.  Both had seen a lot of
names had no inherent meaning you   world and contemplated many things
could always play with them,        with a certain polite amusement.
divide them in different ways -     Not many words were needed to
even ungrammatically.  xi-ro-n,     convey ideas and somehow Lojban
xi-ron, xir-on.  The last variant   suited their purposes extremely
had a Japanese rafsi meaning        well.
'sound' at the end.  He would play
the games mainly in his thoughts        _________________________
as he wasn't exactly of the
playful type.  He would rarely        Following are 2 Lojban pieces,
venture to play with others and     the first two 'stories' told in
few would have considered him a     the cafe.  A translation of Mark's
member of the species Homo ludens,  story will be found in the
playing man.                        translation section (pg. 63).
  He had made few friends during    Iain's story has not been
his year at the Cafe and no real    translated, though there are some
enemies though there were people    comments in the translation
who didn't like him very much.      section.

                                    fi mi fe lei je'a glare ku'i ckafi
  Mark:                             li'uЇ le bevri be lei ckafi be'o
  ni'oni'o vanci  .icabo nalcladu   goi ko'i
ne'i le ckafybarja  .i le bi'u8     .i ko'i cusku ®lu .u'u  .ie
remna cu klama mo'ine'i ra  .i      ga'inai li'uЇ gi'ebabo lebna le
ko'a goi ra zutse ne'a lo jubme     kabri
.i ko'a cpedu loi tcati le          .i ko'i krefu klama gi'e bevri lei
kafybarja se jibri  .i ba so'o      ckafi vau ba so'o mentu  .i ko'e
mentu ko'a se dunda loi tcati gi'e  krefu pencu le kabri  .i ko'e
co'aru'inai pinxe ri                cusku ®lu .i'esai ba'e ti ku'i cu
  ni'o ko'a ca lenu ko'a pinxe loi  je'a glare ckafi li'uЇ  .i ko'e
tcati po ko'a cu zgana lenu le      gleki pinxe lei ckafi po ko'e
bi'u nanmu cu se dunda lei ckafi      no'i ko'a zgana la'eso'odi'u  .i
poi ra pu cpedu ke'a  .ije le       ba so'o mentu ko'a tavla le
nanmu goi ko'e cu pencu le kabri    bi'unai selpinxe bevri goi ko'i
poi se nenri lei ckafi ku'o le      .i ko'a cusku ®lu .ia do pu bevri
degji gi'enai pinxe lei ckafi       lei naldrata ckafi ta vau ?xu
.ije mu'i zo'epela'edi'u ko'e       li'uЇ
cusku ®lu .o'onai ju'ido'u ko       .i ko'i cusku ®lu go'i .o'unairo'a
lebna lei vi ckafi gi'ebabo bevri   .u'uro'a li'uЇ
                                    .i ko'a cusku ®lu ko .i'i na jikca
____________________                dunku  .i mi puzuze'u se jibri
                                    loinu bevri loi selpinxe vi lo
8Lojbab:  This text uses "bi'u"     gusta  .iseki'ubo mi djuno tu'a le
and "bi'unai" which are not on any  do se zukte  .i da poi prenu cu
published word lists yet with the   genai pinxe lei ckafi gi pencu le
current meaning.  They are used to  kabri gi'e na'e djica tu'a lei
discursively to mark pieces of the  ckafi ki'u lo za'i na'e
sentence as 'new information' or    pe'ise'inai glare  .ije semu'i
'old information'.  New             loinu da minde mi lenu basti lei
information is that which the       ckafi loi glare ckafi kei kei mi
speaker is trying to communicate    lebna lei ckafi gi'e na'o denpa
to the listener, while old in-      fu'i so'e mentu tezu'e lenu tu'a
formation is that which the         lei ckafi cu glaryri'a le kabri
speaker assumes that the listener   kei fo lenu krefu dunda lei
knows from background or context.   naldrata ckafi  .i za'a do panra
Normally this distinction is con-   zukte  .i la'ede'u ve ctuca fu
veyed in natural languages through  tu'a le slabu lisri be le bebna
word order (putting new in-         seljibri ka'u li'uЇ
formation either at the beginning   .i ko'i cusku ®lu le lisri ki'a
or the end of the sentence, typi-   li'uЇ
cally, depending on the language    .i ko'a cusku ®lu .ue do punai ?xu
and the situation), but people      ve lisri fu ri li'uЇ
want to have the option in Lojban   .i ®lu noroi ve lisri li'uЇ
of using word order for other       .i ®lu .ai mi te lisri  .i tu'e
purposes including simply           ka'u da'i puzuki da te bende le re
expressing the place structures in  seljibri  .i fo'a goi le te bende
numerical order.                    ca le fanmo be le jeftu cu pleji
  Marking a "le" description sumti  le se jerna le re seljibri no'u
as new information on its first     lu'i le prije seljibri goi fo'e
occurrence in text, for example,    ge'u jo'u le bebna seljibri goi
means that the speaker has a        fo'i  .i le se jerna cu rupnu li
specific and definite someone/-     panono  .ijesemu'ibo fo'a pleji
something in mind, but that he      lei jdini be ta'i le pelji jdini
doesn't expect the listener to      fo'e .e fo'i  .i fo'e ckire fo'a
know which someone/something is     gi'ebabo cliva gi'e gleki ki'u
being referred to at that point.    lenu le jdini cu se vamji li
Without "bi'u", the listener might  su'orau
wonder why he can't figure out      .i fo'i na'e gleki  .i cusku ®lu
which one the speaker is talking    .o'onai mi to'e lazni gunka fi'o

te bende do ca piro le jeftu  .i    .i jetnu fa lenu ko'e na kakne
do pleji levi malpelji  .i'enaisai  lenu tavla  .ijeku'iseki'unaibo mi
mi  .i le'o ko pleji fi mi fe le    su'oroi jinvi lenu ko'e jimpe la'e
je'u je'a jdini no'u lo sicni       le se cusku be mi li'uЇ
li'uЇ  .isemu'ibo fo'a pleji fo'i   .i ®lu  .iku'i mu'ima va'o la'e
lo gusminra sicni poi se fepni li   so'odi'u ko'e co'a bradi do li'uЇ
mu  .iseki'ubo fo'i gleki klama le  .i ®lu
fo'i zdani tu'u                        na birti  .i noda ru'a jimpe le
.i tu'a di'u xe ctuca fi ledu'u       stura bele menli be lei puzu
jdice nagi'apubo e'ucai zgana  .i     respa
.ua ri'a je'unai ka'u le sego'i zo    .i seki'unai la'ede'u mi
"za'a" noi cmavo fi lesi'o zgana      pupuziki gasnu lenu xendo ko'e
ku'o cu rafsi zo zabna li'uЇ          .i mi'a puzi klama zo'a lo bende
                                      be lo xanto  .ijeseki'ubo mi
  ________________________________    mu'i lenu djica lenu fanta lenu
              _____                   damba noi cumki fa lenu ke'a se
                                      jalge lenu ko'e se xrani cu
  Iain:                               cusku ®lu ko se kajde fi tu'a le
  .i bazi lenu mi'a simxu lenu        mabru li'uЇ
rinsa kuku lo nanmu poi nanca li    li'uЇ  mi'e .i,n.
so'a cu klama pu'e le na'e sirji    
ne'i le barja gi'e co'a zutse ca'u          le lojbo se ciska
mi                                         le lisri be le serti
.i le nanmu goi ko'a cusku le se     by Christo Smirnenski, translated
du'u ri puzi se gunta lo puzu       from Bulgarian by Ivan Derzhanski
respa pe la'o ly. saurischia ly.    
.i ®lu  .iku'i loi respa pe           Over a year ago, Ivan made the
la'edi'u cu puzu ji'esti li'uЇ se   following translation from a
cusku mi                            Bulgarian original.  Because Nora
.i ®lu  .ila'aru'e go'i  .iboku'i   and I have been so slow at
simlu fa lenu noda ve cilre         technical review of Lojban text
la'edi'u fo ra cu'usa'a ko'a        and because JL has been less than
.i lenu mi'a simxu lenu kansa cu    regular, this long promised effort
nanca li reno                       is finally making it to print.
.i mi co'aki kurji ko'e goi le        As with some of our other texts
respa ca lenu ri ca'o citno         this issue, a translation may be
.i mi jinvi ledu'u le mamta be      found later, along with footnoted
ko'e cu morsi ba'o lo nanca be li   commentary on the text.  This text
so'o  .ije cumki fa lenu ko'e       is being published without final
romoi lu'i le jutsi                 revision.  Ivan's original
.i le pendo be mi zu'apu kurji      submission was so well done that
ko'e gi'eku'i puzi co'a speni gi'e  Nora was able to translate it and
gasnu lenu cfari fa lenu lanzu      understand it as she received it.
kuku gi'e jinvi ledu'u vo'a na      Her translation was extensively
kakne lenu tu'ari xamgu ko'e ca     commented by Ivan, who planned to
lenu xamgu le lanzu                 rewrite the text based on the com-
.isemu'ibo le go'i cpedu lenu mi    ments.  I think that the text we
curmi lenu basti fi lenu bilga      have is good enough to see print,
lenu kurji ko'e                     and the commentary and response
.i mi je'a curmi  .ijeja'ebo kiku   from Ivan, with added notes from
nu'i bi'ogi ca la'edi'u gi caku     Nick Nicholas and Lojbab, serve as
dunda loi cidja .e loi djacu ko'e   an excellent study in Lojban
.ijebo satre ko'e  .ijebo fi lenu   stylistics and the problems of
cadzu cu kansa fe ko'e              translation.
.i ca lo'e vanci mi tavla ko'e        (The excellence of Ivan's work
so'i klesi be lei te cilre be'o ne  should not be doubted merely
mu'u le citri be loi jmive be va'o  because of the number of
le terdi be'obe'o .e loi jicmu be   footnotes.  The stylistic
le saske bele munje poi vanbi ma'a  discussions in these footnotes
                                    consist of Ivan's explanations of

subtle distinctions in the          cucycau cmaxli cu jgari lera
original Bulgarian that are not     selxaksu taxfu gi'e catlu le galtu
captured in Nora's translation.  I  serti sepi'o lo tinbe je simsa be
felt that presenting these          le rulnkentaure,a bei leka blanu
discussions would teach a fair      ku kanla  .i catlu je cisma  .i
amount about the language, while    loi selpopseltau je grusi je cinla
showing some of the stylistic       remtra cu trixe dzukla gi'e gunma
considerations that go into an      sanga lo selsno ke mrori'i zgike
excellent translation,              .i da kercrori'a siclu fi le ctebi
considerations that need not apply  .i de noi daski nenri se xance cu
when, like Veijo or Mark, you       cmila sepi'o lo cladu je rufsu
write originally in Lojban.)        voksa  .ije lede kanla cu jarco
  As with other pieces published    leka fenki
in this JL, I am publishing this      ni'o ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka
text with essentially no changes,   cerda  .ije ro le pidrai mi bruna
choosing instead to make my         .i .oicai ge le terdi cu to'e
comments in the footnotes along     melbi gi le remna cu to'e gleki
with Nora's, Nick's, and Ivan's.    .i .iunai vu gapru  .i .o'onai
Ivan did such an excellent job; I   li'uЇ
can scarcely say that my artistic   .i di'u se bacru lo citno nanmu
judgement could better than his     noi se lafti se mebri gi'e dukri'a
capture the sense of the Bulgarian  denmi se xance
text that I've never read.          .i ®lu .io xupe'i do xebni lei vu
  Enjoy!                            gapru li'uЇ preti fi fo'a noi ca
                                    tcica krori'a le xadni fa'a ko'a
.i fitfi'i di'e ro lei ba cusku be  .i ®lu .aisai mi ba vefsfa lei vu
ledu'u vo'e vo'i na srana           mabla nobli joi turni  .i mi ri
  ni'oni'o tu'e                     kusru vefsfa seka'i leimi bruna
®lu do ?mo li'uЇ preti fi la        goi ko'u noi simsa be le canre bei
pacrux. goi fo'a                    leka pelxu ku se flira zi'e noi
.i ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka       zmadu be le la gaimast. si'erbi'e
cerda  .ije ro le pidrai mi bruna   bei leni tepri'a ku se cmoni  .i
.i .oicai ge le terdi cu to'e       ko viska leko'u ®lunbe ke ciblu ve
melbi gi le remna cu to'e gleki     flecu xadni  .i ko tirna leko'u
li'uЇ                               cmoni  .i .ai mi ko'u venfu  .i
.i di'u se bacru lo citno nanmu     le'o ko curmi li'uЇ
noi se lafti se mebri gi'e denmi    .i fo'a cisma
se xance  .i ri goi ko'a sanli      .i ®lu mi jibri bandu lei vu gapru
crane le serti  .i labyxu'e linji   .ije mi se le'irbai gi'anai
ke blabi roimrmaro ke galtu serti   lacti'a ri li'uЇ
.i ko'a catlu mo'ifa'a le darno ne  .i ®lu mi ponse no solji  .i mi
di'o lepu'u lei grusi kalsygri be   ponse no lo se pleji befi do  .i
leka pindi cu ca simsa be loi       mi pindi je selpopseltau citno
ctaru rirxe ke to'ekli boxna ku     .iku'i mi bredi lenu pleji lemi
savri'a  .i diklo slilu gi'e febvi  kazyji'e li'uЇ
fengu gi'e lafti loi to'e plana ke  .i fo'a rapli cisma
xekri birka  .i le nunpante ke      .i ®lu .e'onai ri zmadu lemi se
suksa sance .e lei fengu nunki'a    cpadji  .i do'anai ko fi mi dunda
cu desku le vacri  .i le te minra   leka do sanga'e li'uЇ  .i ®lu
cu simsa be lo darno ke barda       .ueru'e leka mi sanga'e  .i
terdanti sance ku masno je junri    .iefi'i  .i .e'i mi noroi tirna di
runta  .i lei girzu cu banro gi'e   .i .e'i li'uЇ
klama ne'i loi pelxu pulce dilnu    .i ®lu do ranji leka ka'e tirna
.ije loi sepli ti'otra cu mutcne    li'uЇ  .i fo'a ko'a papri'a sepi'o
leka viskli ze'o le kampu ke grusi  di'u gi'e cadzu curmi  .i ®lu ko
vanbi                               pagre li'uЇ
  ni'o pa.o'enai to'ercitno cu      .i ko'a bikla bajra gi'e dzugre ci
simsa be lepu'u sisku leri se       te serti tai pa nu stapa  .i ku'i
cirko ka citno be'o ni'akro be      lefo'a terkre xance ko'a lacpu
fa'a le terdi ku dzukla  .i lo

.i ®lu banzu  .i ko sisti mu'i      kazyci'o .e lo cnino kazmo'i  .i
lenu tirna leiko'u vu cnita cmoni   ga do zanru gi do noroi pagre levi
li'uЇ                               te serti gi'e noroi venfu leido
.i ko'a sisti gi'e kerlo jundi      bruna pe lo se flira be le simsa
.i ®lu .uesai  .i ?ki'uma ko'u      be le canre zi'e pe le se cmoni be
suksa cfari lenu to'edri sanga      le zmadu be le la gaimast.
gi'e xalbo cmila li'uЇ  .i ko'a     si'erbi'e bei leni tepri'a li'uЇ
krefu ke bikla bajra                .i ko'a catlu lefo'a crino je
.i fo'a ko'a krefu rinju            ranxi kanla
.i ®lu mu'i lenu do krefu pagre ci  .i ®lu ku'i mi ba traji leni to'e
te serti kei mi cpadji ledo kanla   gleki  .i do lebna ro ckaji be le
li'uЇ                               kazre'a mi li'uЇ
.i ko'a pa'arcau sliri'a le xance   .i ®lu to'e go'e  .i traji leni
.i ®lu ku'i va'o la'edi'u mi na     je'a gleki  .i .e'apei  .i ?xu do
ka'e viska ga leimi bruna gi leimi  tugni  .i do'anai leka do cinmo je
ba se vefsfa li'uЇ                  morji li'uЇ
.i ®lu do ranji leka ka'e viska     .i ko'a cu trati pensi  .i lo
.i mi fi do ba dunda lo drata       xekri ctino cu manri'a leko'a
kanla noi mutce zmadu li'uЇ  .i     flira  .i loi xasne ke to'ekli
ko'a rapli pagre ci te serti gi'e   dirgo cu gunro zo'a le se cinje
ni'a catlu jundi  .i fo'a rinka     mebri  .i ko'a fengu demri'a le
lenu ko'a morji                     xance gi'e bacru pa'o le denci
.i ®lu ko viska leko'u ®lunbe ke    ®lu .ai.e'asai  .i ko lebna li'uЇ
ciblu ve flecu xadni li'uЇ            ni'o ca lenu le xekri kerfa ca
.i ®lu .uecai  .i .u'ecai cizra     biflu'a kei ko'a simsa be le crisa
.i ?cama binxo lenu ko'u melbi      lidbi'e ku fengu pagre le romoi te
dasni  .i ji'a seba'i lei ciblu te  serti  .i ko'a capu snada lemu'e
xrani ko'u se jadni loi se manci    gapru  .i suksa cisma gusni leko'a
xunre rozgu li'uЇ                   flira  .i leko'a kanla cu dirce
  ni'o vi ro lo cimoi te serti      seci'o le smaji ka se mansa  .i
fo'a di'i lebna lefo'a cmalu        leko'a xance cu ®luzbi'o  .i ko'a
selpleji  .i ku'i ko'a ru'i cadzu   catlu lei pixsalci nobli  .i catlu
.i ko'a bredi dunda rodi mu'i       le cnita be di'o lenu krixa je
lemu'e klama tu gi'e vefsfa leivu   dapma fa le grusi je selpopseltau
malplana nobli joi turni  .i        girzu  .i catlu  .i ku'i no sluji
.uo.ui semaunai pa te serti  .i ba  be leko'a flira cu frati  .i ri
su'epa te serti ko'a gapru  .i      selgu'i je gleki je selpu'a  .i
ko'a cabazi venfu leiko'a bruna     ko'a viska loi salci se taxfu
.i ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka       girzu vi le cnita  .i lei pu cmoni
cerda  .ije ro le pidrai sa'a       ca salpemci
li'uЇ                               .i ®lu do ?mo li'uЇ tcica preti fi
.i ®lu ju'i. citno nanmu su'epa te  fo'a sepi'o lo rufsu voksa
serti  .i ba su'epa te serti do     .i ®lu mi nobli ji'u leka cerda
venfu  .i ku'i levi te serti di'i   .ije lei cevni mi bruna  .i .uicai
ve pleji le relpi'i jdima mi  .i    ge le terdi cu je'a melbi gi le
ko fi mi dunda leka do cinmo je     remna cu je'a gleki li'uЇ
morji li'uЇ  .i ko'a sliri'a le     
xance                               tu'u
.i ®lu .ii leka cinmo  .i           .i di'u se finti la xristoz.
.e'anaicai  .i dukse kusru li'uЇ    smirnensk. gi'e se fanva la .iVAN.
.i fo'a maljgira cmila ra'i le      derJANSK. fo le banblgaria si'u la
galxe                               nitcion. nikolas. fa'o
.i ®lu mi na mela'edi'u kusru  .i   
mi fi do canja dunda lo zabna       

 le ci cribe - An Operettina with a familiar plot and music, by Nora
  (As performed at LogFest 92 - No translation exists for this text)


Props: big, medium & little bowls.  Also pot & serving spoon, table &
       high, medium & low chairs.
       hard, soft & medium beds.

[] = actions
() = extra syllables/words on sung line.

[The 3 bears sit down to eat.]

      Song #1: "mi ba citka" to the tune of "Are You Sleeping?"

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                -------------------------    
     mi ba citka
(.i) mi ba citka  [eats]
(.i) glare .oi           mi ba citka
(.i) glare .oi      (.i) mi ba citka  [eats]
(.i) .e'u mi'o denpa                     (.i) glare .oi          mi ba
     le nu ti ba cenba                   (.i) glare .oi     (.i) mi ba
citka  [eats]
(.i) litru .ai      (.i) .e'u mi'o denpa (.i) glare .oi
(.i) litru .ai [starts leaving]               le nu ti ba cenba  (.i)
glare .oi
                    (.i) litru .ai       (.i) .e'u mi'o denpa
                    (.i) litru .ai [starts leaving]         le nu ti
ba cenba
                                         (.i) litru .ai
                                         (.i) litru .ai [starts

[The 3 bears leave.  Along comes Goldilocks]

      Song #2: "mi xagji" to the tune of "The Inky-Dinky Spider"

                 mi xagji gi'e tatpi
                 .i mi ba nerkla ti
 [enters & sniffs]  .i .ue kukte panci
                 da poi cidja vi
                 .ije zangla marbi
                 co se kufra mi
                 .i mi lazni gi'e citka
                 le kukydja bazi

 [Goldilocks sits down at table and starts on Big Bowl contents.]

 Song #3 "ti dukse glare" to the tune of "He's Got the Whole World In
                              His Hands"

[Sits down at table with bowls]

Verse 1:            GOLDILOCKS
 [tastes from big bowl]  ti dukse glare .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [tastes from medium]    .i dukse lenku .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [tastes from small]     .i prane ni glare
                 .ui ai cai
                 .i mi ba citka piro ti [eats it all up]

 [Goes to chairs]

Verse 2:            GOLDILOCKS
 [sits on high chair]    ti dukse galtu .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [sits on low]   .i dukse dizlo .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [sits on medium]   .i prane ni galtu
                 .ui ai cai
                 .i mi ba stizu zutse ti
 [falls off chair as it breaks.
  Spoken:]       .ue

 [Goes to beds]

Verse 3:            GOLDILOCKS
 [sits on hard bed] ti dukse jdari .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [sits on soft]  .i dukse ranti .i
                 .oi .ai nai
 [sits on medium]   .i prane ni jdari
                 .ui .ai cai
                 .i mi ba sipna cpana ti     [lies down & goes to

[3 bears return, entering]

 Song #4: "le ci cribe co'u xrutykla"  to the tune of "Oh, How Lovely
                           Is the Evening"

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                -------------------------    
le ci cribe
  co'u xrutykla
  le ri lazyzda
gi'e djica          le ci cribe
  le nu gurnycti      co'u xrutykla
  gi'e surla  .i      le ri lazyzda

ctinei              gi'e djica           le ci cribe
cribe                 le nu gurnycti       co'u xrutykla
cimei                 gi'e surla  .i       le ri lazyzda
                    ctinei               gi'e djica
                    cribe                  le nu gurnycti
                    cimei                  gi'e surla  .i


          Song #5: "bredi .au" to the tune of "This Old Man"

Verse 1: [3 bears go to bowls]

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                -------------------------    
bredi .au
selcti mi
vi le palta         bredi .au
   barda .ui        selcti mi
.i da citka pi      vi le palta          bredi .au
   so'u le kukte ti    midju .ui         selcti mi
semu'i le ka        .i de citka pi       vi le palta
   vefydji             so'u le kukte ti     cmalu .ui
                    semu'i le ka         .i di citka pi
                       vefydji              ro lemi kukte ti
                                         semu'i le ka

Verse 2: [3 bears go to chairs]

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                ------------------------     
stizu co
steci mi
gi'e mutce          stizu co
   galtu .ui        steci mi
.i da zutse le mi   gi'e mutce           stizu co
   stizu .ue puzi      dizlo .ui         steci mi
semu'i le ka        .i de zutse le mi    gi'e milxe
   vefydji             stizu .ue puzi       galtu .ui
                    semu'i le ka         .i di daspypli le
                       vefydji              stizu .ue puzi
                                         semu'i le ka

Verse 3: [3 bears go to beds]

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                -------------------------    
ckana co
steci mi
gi'e mutce          ckana co
   jdari .ui        steci mi
.i da vreta le mi   gi'e mutce           ckana co
   ckana .ue puzi      ranti .ui         steci mi
semu'i le ka        .i de vreta le mi    gi'e milxe
   vefydji             ckana .ue puzi       jdari .ui
                    semu'i le ka         .i di vreta le mi
                       vefydji              ckana .ue puzi
                                         gi'e ranji
                                            zvati ti  [points]

[Goldilocks awakes to see three angry bears.  She cowers]

   Song #6 ".ue .o'onai" to Beethoven's 5th Symphony, 1st Movement,
          starting after the two introductory 4-note groups.

[Play symphony as accompaniment - Wait for introductory bars to end
and start singing.]

   PAPA BEAR                MAMA BEAR    BABY BEAR        GOLDILOCKS
---------------------    ----------------------   --------------------
-           ----------------------
.ue .o'onai
            .ue .o'onai
                         .ue .o'onai
                                      .ii cai
.i .o'onai
            .i .o'onai
                         .i .o'onai
                                      .ii cai
.i .o'onai
                                      .ii cai
            .i .o'onai
                                      .ii cai
                         .i .o'onai
                                      mi cliva [runs out]

[Once again, the 3 bears sit down to eat.  Mama Bear serves afresh.]

 Song #7: "mi ba citka", reprise (to the tune of "Are You Sleeping?")

   PAPA BEAR           MAMA BEAR            BABY BEAR
-------------------------                -------------------------    
     mi ba citka
(.i) mi ba citka  [eats]
(.i) glare .oi           mi ba citka
(.i) glare .oi      (.i) mi ba citka  [eats]
(.i) mi'o na ba denpa                    (.i) glare .oi          mi ba
     le nu ti ba cenba                   (.i) glare .oi     (.i) mi ba
citka  [eats]
(.i) citka .ai      (.i) mi'o na ba denpa    (.i) glare .oi
(.i) citka .ai [starts eating]                le nu ti ba cenba  (.i)
glare .oi
                    (.i) citka .ai       (.i) mi'o na ba denpa
                    (.i) citka .ai [starts eating]          le nu ti
ba cenba
                                         (.i) citka .ai
                                         (.i) citka .ai [starts

[curtains close]
             _______                ti cu dukse glare cidja .ue .aunai
Note:  Three Alternate songs        .i ti dukse ji'a lenku .aunaisai
available for Song #3               .i ti glare prane cidja
       (Goldilocks tries food,      .i mi kazyxagji citka
etc.):                              ze'apu le nu se tisna
                                    .a'o .ai
________                            ti cu dukse galtu stizu .ue .aunai
A: "ti cu dukse glare" to the tune  .i ti dukse ji'a dizlo .aunaisai
of                                  .i ti galtu prane stizu
   "She'll Be Coming 'Round the     .i mi djica le nu mi cu
Mountain When She Comes"            zutse surla vi le pritu

.a'o .ai                           .i mi na vreta ti
                                   .i ti dukse .uu ranti
ti cu dukse jdari ckana .ue .aunai .i .a'o ta xagmau ti
.i ti dukse ji'a ranti .aunaisai   .i .ui .ai cai
.i ti jdari prane ckana            mi vreta sipna .ui vi
.i do kakne le nu zgana            
le nu mi cu sipna cpana            
.a'o .ai


B: "ti dukse glare .ainai" to the
tune of
    "For the Beauty of the Earth"

ti dukse glare .ainai .i
mi na ka'e citka ti
.i dukse ji'a lenku .uu
.i ta va cu xagmau ?xu
.i ti glare prane .ui
.i mi citka piro ti

ti dukse galtu .ainai .i
mi na ka'e zutse ti
.i dukse ji'a dizlo .uu
.i ta va cu xagmau ?xu
.i ti galtu prane .ui
.i mi stizu zutse ti

ti dukse jdari .ainai .i
mi na ka'e sipna vi
.i dukse ji'a ranti .uu
.i ta va cu xagmau ?xu
.i ti jdari prane .ui
.i mi sipna cpana ti


C: "ti cu dukse .uu glare" to the
tune of
     "Du, Du Liegst Mir Im Herzen"

ti cu dukse .uu glare
.i mi na citka ti
.i ti dukse .uu lenku
.i .a'o ta xagmau ti
.i .ui .ai cai
mi citka piro ti vi

ti cu dukse .uu galtu
.i mi na zutse ti
.i ti dukse .uu dizlo
.i .a'o ta xagmau ti
.i .ui .ai cai
mi stizu zutse .ui vi

ti cu dukse .uu jdari

 Translations and Commentary for ckafybarja writings and le lojbo se

Following are computer-generated glosses for the first of Veijo's two
Lojban texts.  In addition to providing help for those who are at-
tempting to read the texts, they also serve to show the current
capability of the Lojban glosser program that Nora is working on.  As
it is, it produces word-for-word interlinear translations, substi-
tuting an English keyword for each Lojban word (and some compounds).
But as you can see, a word-for-word gloss can be nearly unreadable if
you do not know the grammatical function of each Lojban word, and
appropriately adjust the meaning of the keyword to reflect the
function of the word in the Lojban grammar of the sentence.

                         Veijo's First Text

 ({<le  [(la veion) (ckafybarja    {srinuntroci          <[xi    pa]
    the      veion   coffee+tavern  story+event-of+tries   -sub- 1

[xi    ci]>})]>}
 -sub- 3

ni'o  {<[({<[({<[({<[({<[sriku'a   ] i [ckafybarja   ]>
    _                    Story+room  .  Coffee+tavern

i <mi   [(zvati      {<le  vorstu   >}) gi'e (terpanci
.  Me     present at   the door+site    and   3rd-place-of+odor

{<[loi             ckafi ] [da           ui       cai
   the mass of all coffee   something #1 (Wheee!) (-intense emotion!)

i {mi   <[(ca               {ze'u                <pu
.  Me      at the time (of)  for an eon (during)  before

[nai  oi   ]>}) sumne  ] [da          ]>})
 -not (Oy!)     smeller   something #1

i (mi   {<dzukla     [(le  jbustu    )]> gi'e <ctacarna        >})]
.  Me     walks+goes   the table+site    and   looks-at+rotates

i [(rancindu jubme)]>
.   Soft+oak table

i <seldandu          [(lo   {<vrici         to'erninda'i           >
.  2nd-place-of+hang   some   miscellaneous opposite-of-+new+object

<noi     [mi   ({na       djuno} {<zo'e      ke'a     >})]>})]>}
 , which  me     not true knows    something he/she/it

i {selzvati                <[({ji'i          pano}) (zutse remna)]>})
.  2nd-place-of+present-at     approximately 10      sits  human

i (srotanxe   {<[loi             ckafi ] [lei         mudri]>})] i
[vrici        ]>
.  Stores+box    the mass of all coffee   the mass of wood       .

i <mi   [visyfacki       ({fi  <[pa] [lo   ({poi  <[loi
.  Me    sees+discoverer   x3=   1    some   that   the mass of all

remna] [(na       zutlamji     ) (ke'a     )]> ku'o} {jubme <goi
human    not true sits+adjacent   he/she/it    ,      table  alias

i {mi   <[co'a        zutlamji     ] [ko'a]>})
.  Me     on starting sits+adjacent   it-1

i (ko'a {lamji    <[le  nunjupca'u          ]>})]
.  It-1  adjacent   the event-of+cooks+space

i [(le  jukpa) cu        ({selviska         } gi'e {jupfinti
.   The cooks  (is/does)   2nd-place-of+sees  and   cooks+inventor

<[de           a'ucu'i          ]>})]>
  something #2 (Not interested!)

i <mi   [(pensi     a'e         ) ({loi
.  Me     cogitates (I'm alert!)    the mass of all

<selpinxe            co      [ckafi  au       ]>})]>}
 2nd-place-of+drinks of type  coffee (I want!)

i {ckafypanci  <[fi  (mi   ui      )]>}) i (ckafypanci )] [
.  Coffee+odor   x3=  me   (Wheee!)      .  Coffee+odor

i ui       o'u             ]> i <sriku'a   >})
. (Wheee!) (Ahh! Relaxing!)   .  Story+room

                                     .i rancindu5 jubme  .i seldandu lo
 Commentary on Veijo's first text    vrici to'erninda'i noi mi na djuno
                                     zo'e ke'a  .i selzvati ji'ipano
le la vei,on ckafybarja srinuntroci  zutse remna  .i srotanxe loi ckafi
             xipa xici               lei mudri  .i vrici  .i mi
  ni'o sriku'a  .i ckafybarja  .i    visyfacki fi pa lo poi loi remna na
mi zvati le vorstu gi'e terpanci     zutlamji ke'a ku'o jubme goi ko'a
loi ckafi da.uicai1  .i mi ca        .i mi co'a zutlamji ko'a  .i ko'a
ze'upunai.oi sumne da2  .i mi        lamji le nunjupca'u6  .i le jukpa
dzukla le jbustu3 gi'e ctacarna4     cu selviska gi'e jupfinti
                                     de.a'ucu'i  .i mi pensi.a'e loi
                                     selpinxe7 co  .i
1Mark:  "I am-at the door-place      stare, the scanning being done
[doorway] and am-a-smell-receptor-   mainly mentally).
of [smell-emitted-by] mass-of
coffee [smell being] x1"             5Colin asks:  loi rancindu ki'a
  Whoa!  Took me a long while to     (Don't understand "soft oak") Veijo
work out how that works.  The        responds: The original Description
sentence seems to be redundant, but  #2 from LogFest/Lojbab called for
somehow manages actually to          that.
sensibly bind "da", making an
existential claim at the same time.  6Mark:  "event-of-cooking volume"?
Confusing, but very clever, and      Maybe "jupkumfa"?  It is a room,
rather uniquely lojbanic.            after all, isn't it?  Not sure the
                                     "nun-" is necessary, but it's not
2Mark: I believe that "da" gets      badly placed.
unbound between sentences (except
at ijeks [I+JE]), so you should        Veijo:  First I had
either have an ".ije" there or use   "(nun)jupkumfa" but then wanted to
some other sort of anaphora to get   have just the space, not to imply
the smell.  You could probably just  separation at this stage.  More
ellipsize it entirely and get the    lojbo :)
meaning across fine.
                                       Mark:  Hrrm.  Still seems a
  Veijo responds: Didn't think of    little weird to me, but you're
that (being too smug having put      probably absolutely right here.
together the previous bridi).
".ije" is actually quite good here.  7Iain:  Whether you use "le pinxe"
  Didn't want to ellipsize.          or "le se pinxe", you are still
Definitely not.  The smell was the   using "pinxe", with all its
thing.                               connotations.  "selpinxe" zu'unai
                                     is a lujvo, obviously derived from
3Colin: "jbustu" - I guess I         "pinxe", and with a closely associ-
understand, but I don't find it      ated meaning, but with potentially
obvious. ?xu zo jbustu cu sinxa le   a definition of its own, which may
pagbu be le dinju be'o poi stizu lo  have a completely different
jubme                                emphasis.  So "lo se pinxe" is
                                     "something which is drunk", but "lo
  Veijo responds:  go'i              selpinxe" could well be "a bev-
                                     erage".  dikyjvo considerations
4Mark:  Not sure what "ctacarna"     would give "selpinxe" the same
really implies, but I get the gist.  place structure as "se pinxe", no
                                     doubt, but the connotations need
  Veijo responds:  Did a lot of      not be the same.  There is still
word juggling to arrive at           scope for ambiguity, but within a
"ctacarna".  Not much physical       somewhat different range of
turning, except perhaps the head, a  meanings.
quick wandering look takes in the      But at the moment, we don't have
scene (or an almost stationary       a full, or even a partial, dic-

tionary.  We don't have any lujvo    ___________________________________
definitions.  So while we may guess
that someone means something           Lojbab:  "na'o" and other tense
slightly different by "selpinxe" as  words are intended to logically
distinct from "se pinxe", we can't   apply to a whole bridi and cannot
be sure exactly which facet of the   easily be restricted to a part of
meaning of "pinxe" is intended to    the selbri.  I'm not all that sure
be emphasised.  These are details    what the semantics of such a
which will have to be worked out     restriction would be.  If you want
gradually over a period of time.     the effect of "na'o" or some other
                                     tense/modal on a part of a selbri,
  Nick:  Iain is right.  In fact,    you should do it via tanru, using
the place structure subtly changes   the gismu/selbri equivalent, in
too (too subtly for dikyjvo).        this case perhaps "cnano":  "cnano
There is a second place of           se pinxe ckafi".
"selpinxe", but it corresponds to      For some of these modals, where
the second place of cidja (loi ka'e  there may be some question whether
pinxe), and not of "se pinxe" (lo    the gismu necessarily captures the
ca'a pinxe).  I think this aspect    same sense as a tense would, we are
of lujvo place structures, which we  assigning rafsi to the tense cmavo
haven't paid attention to in the     as part of the rafsi retuning.
past, but which is, I feel, coming   This would also allow you a smaller
through in a few of the place        referent than the whole selbri.
structures I'm postulating, in         The grammar changes being
determining which places get turned  proposed will eliminate the option
off (for example, a dinsro (money-   to put a separate tense on the part
store = treasury) has no container   of a selbri after the "co".  Allow-
important to definition, whereas a   ing that was an error in the
dicysro (electricity-store =         grammar implementation, since, as
battery) has no location important   you have noted, there is no non-
to definition, so those respective   "co" equivalent, and the purpose of
places are turned off - remember     "co" does not include adding new
"xo'o" in last October's             options to selbri, only inverting
discussions?), will come back to     them for emphasis or place
haunt us when we try to tackle       structure convenience.
lujvo properly.  I don't think that
time is quite yet.  But thanks to      Iain: I was going to suggest
Iain and Mark for pointing it out;   using a gismu, but I couldn't find
we will be wary.                     one that fitted the bill.  But you
                                     can bind the tense into the selbri
  Mark:  Aside: I was troubled by    with "be":
the fact that "le na'o se pinxe
ckafi" seems to mean "thing-            le se pinxe be na'o ku ckafi
described-as-being:  typically:
drunk-thing type-of coffee", i.e.      Mark: Yes, that's very good.
something that is typically drunken  Thanks, Iain.  It's a little clumsy
coffee, with the "na'o" applying to  that it has to be preposed like
the whole of the following tanru.    that, but not really.  That was
To my horror, I found that I         what I was looking for.
couldn't restrict the "na'o" to the
"se pinxe".  I thought of putting      Iain: When I wrote this, I
ke/ke'e around "na'o se pinxe", but  thought either "ku" or "be'o" was
that's not grammatical, and putting  necessary - I'm not sure now - but
it around just "se pinxe" didn't     I suspect it helps human parsers.
accomplish anything.  I suppose I
could have done it with "co", but      Mark:  Hmmm.  Apparently neither
that doesn't seem like a very        is necessary, though that isn't
general answer, and it would change  obvious to the human reader at
its place-structure.                 first glance.  Best to keep them
                                     in, for a little extra redundancy.

ckafypanci fi mi.ui  .i ckafypanci
.i .ui.o'u  .i sriku'a

Nick's text with rough translation   gi'e.o'o.aucu'i denpa lenu lo
          and commentary             djabe'ipre cu jundi mi  .i milxe
                                     savru gi'e ruble nungei  .iku'i mi
  .i mi se lidne la vei,on.          cabdei me ®lu .i'inai li'uЇ
ba'acu'i lenu nerkla le la loblaz.   vau.u'uru'ero'a10  .i lei bitmu cu
kafybarja  .i mi sutra joiku'i.o'a   se jadni loi carmi bo vrici joi
banli cadzu pa'o la'ele cravro noi   na'e simlanxe be ja'i le tcaci  .i
tilju je jadycau  .i lenu mi pu      le re cpare ka'amru poi simkruca se
kargau le vorme cu mlirocnandu gi'e  punji fi le cravro gapru na
sacri'a lenu mi catke  .i le te      minrysarxe11 .u'iru'e  .i na go'i
vorme cu se gusni lo lecydo'i milxe  fa loi drata ke bitmu se punji ne
gi'e se kufra cmalu  .i panomei      mu'u lo dembi poi vreta lo kicne
sa'enai.a'acu'i loi jubme  .i mi     ku'o jo'u lo slabu tcityta'o ne
zutse ne'a lo na'e se tsejbi jubme   secu'u ®lu vi xagrai loi tauzba pe
{poi diklo le kumfa kojna gi'e       levi tcadu li'uЇ ge'ujo'u lo
stula'i le vorme ku'o} gi'e catlu    befydai noi te ciska zo
loi zvapre  .iza'a la vei,on. zutse  sindereluud.  .i mi ca jundi le
vi le ragve kojna gi'enaipe'i        jbusfe pe mi  .i te ciska so'ida ne
zvaju'o8 mi  .i ra zanfri            bau la lojban. e la bangrnesperanto
.i'e.o'enai loi panci be loi vi
ckafi9  .i mi zmanei loi tcati       ___________________________________
                                     emotional distance seems to me
____________________                 rather more like aloofness than an
                                     absence of empathy.
8Lojbab:  You used "zvaju'o" and
Sylvia guessed your intent from      10Mark:  I like [this].  Very good
context.  Suggested to use "zgana"   use of "me".  Not sure what you're
or "jundi" as the major basis of     repenting of, but you don't have to
the word.                            say.

  Nick:  Possibly, though I think      Nick:  I was regretting being
"zvaju'o", or at most "nunzvaju'o",  such a misery-guts to the audience,
is clear.                            instead of getting on with the job
                                     of navigating.
9Lojbab:  "He's getting high on the
coffee smells" - No one in the         Lojbab:  "private" - was there a
Tuesday night group could figure     reason for not using "sivni" or a
out anything about what you were     lujvo thereon, which is intended to
trying to convey with that           be associated with this attitudi-
attitudinal, even after checking     nal.
the English.  There's no "se'inai",
so this is your attitude, and I see    Nick:  I was unaware of it.  The
no semantic suggestion of "high"     word would have to be "sivyci'o",
even if I assume the "se'inai" was   and not "sivni".  But I think me+UI
supposed to be there.  Explanation?  is a powerful construct, worth
  Nick:  The ".o'enai" means I
don't empathise, because that's      11Lojbab:  did you consider "lanxe"
what I take emotional closeness to   vs "sarxe".  The English suggests
mean.                                the former and the minra was a bit
  [Regarding "high"] The             confusing.  Doesn't anyone like
translation was a bit loose? :)      "dukti"? (dukti-mapti lanxe/sarxe?)

  Lojbab:  Closeness can be related    Nick: "minra" will have to be
to empathy, but I'm not sure it is   there because the equilibrium is
the same thing, at least in the      one of reflection same-ness.
sense that you used, I mean ex-      "lanxe" is clearly better than
pressed, it.  I can feel             "sarxe", and maybe "te minra"
emotionally close to someone         rather than "minra", but any ex-
without necessarily sharing their    pression for symmetrical will have
feelings about something else.  And  to have a wild metaphor.

.e le glibau .e .ueru'e le dotco     through the front door, which is
.i le dotco cu se ciska ta'i la      heavy and plain.  Opening the door
fraktur  .i mi xebni la fraktur  .i  took a bit of effort, and made it
mi djica {lenu ciska fi le jbusfe    necessary to push.  What is behind
fe ®lu mi la fraktur xebni mi'e      the door is illuminated by mild
kilrois. li'uЇ kei} gi'enai ca       afternoon light, and is comfortably
ponse lo ve ciska befi loi mudri     small.  There's about ten tables, I
.i mi ka'e lebna lo cpare ja bisli   dunno.  I sit at a table with no
kilmru le zunle bitmu  .i mi co'i    one by it, in the corner and next
morji le xajmi pe lei bisli kilmru   to the door, and look at the people
jgari relcisyge'upre  .iku'i lenu    here.  I see Veijo sitting in the
le xajmi cu jboselsku na se snada    opposite corner, and I don't think
mi  .isemu'ibo mi pensi sanga le se  he's noticed I'm here.  He's
finti be la'o pe      getting high on the coffee smells.
me'e ®lu le la tom. gusta li'uЇ  .i  I prefer tea, and I'm waiting - not
lenu go'i cu se dicra lenu lo        that anxiously - for a waiter to
djabe'ipre noi .uacu'i xindo cu      notice me.  There's some noise and
klama mi gi'e cisma bacru ®lu        a bit of merriment.  But today, I'm
cticpe ?ma doi lojbo ga'icu'i li'uЇ  feeling private - uh, sorry about
.i mi co'a se spaji catlu le         that.  The walls are decorated by
be'ipre  .i mi nelci le be'ipre  .i  miscellanies, unharmonious by the
mi mutce nelci co se trina le        usual standards.  The two climbing
be'ipre ja'e lenu mi na spuda ri     axes above the front door aren't
.iseki'ubo ri cmila joiku'i milxe    quite symmetrical.  Nor are the
bo se fanza bacru ®lu be'ebe'e       other objects on the walls - a pea
xaupre zo'o ctidji ja pixydji ?ma    on a cushion, for example, an old
li'uЇ  .i mi spuda bacru ®lu         signboard saying "Best Tailor in
je'eki'e pendo .u'u si ba'edo'u.u'u  the Whole Town", and a belt with
.u'ise'i go'i lo tcati li'uЇ  .i le  "Cinderelwood" written on it.  I
be'ipre goi ko'a cu bacru ®lu go'i   look at the table-top where I'm
lo tcati pe le'a ?ma li'uЇ  .i mi    sitting.  It's been inscribed with
®lu .aicu'i do ?ma stidi li'uЇ  .i   lots of stuff, in Lojban,
ko'a ®lu .e'a la kukytcat. noi vi    Esperanto, English, even German.
purlamrai terve'u li'uЇ  .i mi ®lu   The German stuff is in Fraktur
.i'e ko bevri le la kukytcat. tcati  script.  I hate Fraktur.  I want to
li'uЇ  .i ko'a bacru ®lu baziba'o    write "Kilroy woz here and hates
go'i .oinai li'uЇ gi'e cliva mu'i    Fraktur", but I haven't got
lenu bevri nagi'e tavla lo drata     something to write on wood with.  I
zutse  .ipujecabo lu'i le jukpa      could take an ice-pick or climbing-
kuce le patlu'i lu'u nevi le         pick from the wall to my left.  I
jupku'a cu cladu joi selzdi dabysnu  recall the joke about the ice-pick
.i le jukpa cu so'uroi batkla gi'e   wielding bisexuals, but it doesn't
te jivrei le se casnu fo lei zvati   go into Lojban too well.  So I
.i.aucai mi na ve preti  .i le       start mentally singing Suzanne
barjyjatna noi dasni lo jikri'i      Vega's Tom's Diner.  I am
taurgunma ca tavla la vei,on.  .i    interrupted by a waiter, Indian I
mi xance rinsa la vei,on. i ko'a     suppose, who comes to me and says,
spuda rinsa gi'e nupre lenu bazi     smiling: "What'll ya have to eat,
kansa mi kei mi  .i loi cnino cu     Lojban-lover?"  I look at the
nerkla gi'e cladu rinsa loi no'e     waiter, surprised.  I like the
cnino noi na'oca'o te lisri  .i mi   waiter.  I really like the waiter.
na .ai cabdei ve lisri  .i mi        I'm so attracted to the waiter, I
.e'icu'i cabdei xebni la fraktur.    forget to answer.  So s/he says,
                                     laughing but a bit annoyed, "Hello?
  Free translation of Nick's text    Earth to Goodfellow Lojbanist?
           into English.             What'll ya have to eat or drink?"
                                     I answer "I hear you, and thank
  I've been preceded by Veijo in     you, friend (shgeez) - Oh, not
entering Cafe Loblaz.  I swiftly     shgeez about you, shgeez about not
and yet grandly make my entrance     answering; what a klutz I am!  :)

I'll have tea."  "What kind of       opinion about the topic he's
tea?"  "shrug What do you            debating.  I really don't want to
recommend?"  "Oh, you could have a   be asked.  The manager, wearing a
Tasty-T; it's our most recent        suit, is talking to Veijo.  I wave
purchase."  "OK, get us a Tasty-T."  at Veijo; he waves back and
The waiter says "Consider it done",  promises me he'll be with me in a
and leaves, not to get it, but to    moment.  New people enter and
talk to other patrons.  While this   loudly greet those already there,
has been going on, the cook and the  who are typically telling stories.
dishwasher in the kitchen have been  I don't feeling like being told any
loudly and enthusiastically ar-      stories today.  Today, I feel like
guing.  The cook occasionally comes  hating Fraktur.
out and asks the patrons for their

                         Veijo's Second Text

 ({<le  [(la veion) (ckafybarja    {srinuntroci          <[xi    re]
    The      veion   coffee+tavern  story+event-of+tries   -sub- 2

[xi    re]>})]>}
 -sub- 2

ni'o  {<[({<[({<[({<[({<[({<[mi   ({penzutse       o'u
    _                        Me     cogitates+sits (Ahh! Relaxing!)

i [to'erninda'i            ({fa  <le  [mi   jubme]>})]>
.  Opposite-of-+new+object   x1=  the  me   table

i <ciska     [(da           {le  jbusfe       })]>} { ije  } {mi
.  Inscriber   something #1  the table+surface        ; and   me

<catlu    [(da           a'u        )]>}) i (lerfu  {<la [fraktur ue
 looks at   something #1 (interest!)      .  Letter       fraktur

i [mi   (morji     {<fi  [loi             (lerfu  {be <la
.  Me    remembers   x3=  the mass of all  letter  of     fraktur

i <morji    >} i {mi   <[({<pu     zu           > ki} zvati     )
({le  ckule })]
.  Remembers   .  Me        before , a long time  :   present at
the school

gi'e [({ caca'a      } tcidu )]>})
and      currently is  reader

i (mi   {tcidu  <[le  (cfika   {be <le  [(ze) bruna  ]> <bei [(la
.  Me    reader   the  fiction  of  the   7   brother    of

{aleksis kivis}) (po'u     {le  natmytercfi
 aleksis kivis    which is  the ethnos+3rd-place-of+fiction

i [(le  {<poi  [(le  {drata      <be mi  >}) cu        (tcidu
.   The   that   the  other than  of me      (is/does)  reader

{<fi  ke'a     >})] ku'o> selpapri         }) cu

  x3= he/she/it     ,     2nd-place-of+page   (is/does)

({te           prina  } {<loi             [lerfu  (be {la
  3rd place of printer    the mass of all  letter  of     antik

i <[le  (mi   {selpapri          <goi   ko'a>})] [(te
.   The  me    2nd-place-of+page  alias it-1       3rd place of

prina  ) ({loi             <lerfu  [be (la fraktur)]>})]>}
printer    the mass of all  letter  of     fraktur

i {<le  [nu       (tcidu  {<de           [pe  (ta'i
.   The  event of  reader   something #2  of   in form

{la fraktur})]>}) kei]> <[(pu     nandu    ) (mi  )] gi'e
    fraktur       ,        before difficult   me     and

[(ca               frili)]>})
  at the time (of) easy

i (mi   {djica   <[(le  {nu       <tcidu  [(fi  ko'a)]> kei}) (mu'i
.  Me    desires    the  event of  reader   x3= it-1    ,

{le  <nu       [(le  {mi   patfu }) ({<pu     zu           > prina  }
 the  event of   the  me   father      before , a long time  printer

{<[loi             lerfu ] [loi             (ko'a papri)]>})]>})]>})]
   the mass of all letter   the mass of all  it-1 page

i [(le  {mi   patfu }) ({ze'u                prina  })]>
.   The  me   father     for an eon (during) printer

i <[(le  {<nu       [ri   (go'i      )] kei> nanca   }) (li
{< vobi>})]>}
.    The   event of  it    , the same   ,    in years    the number

i {<[ki ku] mi  > <catlu    [(le  {vi        <lerfu  [be (la
.    :      me     looks at   the  here (at)  letter  of     fraktur

i (lerfu )] i [(bacru  ue     ) ({zo             coi  })]>
.  Letter   .   Utters (What!)    quote-unquote: hello

i <[barjyjatna     a'a             ]>}
.   Tavern+captain (I'm attentive!)

i {<la nitcion> <[(co'a        va        ) (se
.      nitcion     on starting there (at)   2nd place of

zvaju'o         )] [mi  ]>})
present-at+knows    me

i (ra   {<xance rinsa  > <mi  >})] [ ije  ] [mi   ({spuda    rinsa
.  It     hand  greeter   me         ; and   me     responds greeter

i <[la nitcion] [({ caca'a      } xebni) ({la fraktur})]>})

.      nitcion      currently is  hater       fraktur

                                   ®lu .ie.a'a .ie.o'onairu'e
  Commentary on Veijo's 2nd text   (cu'usa'a mi noi caki vilkla zo'a
                                   le vorme4 fi'o te mlixra le janco
     le la vei,on. ckafybarja      ku'o) sera'a ?ma pezyjicla5 li'uЇ
      srinuntroci xire xire        .i mi vi le zdani pu zutse co

  ni'o mi penzutse.o'u  .i         ____________________
to'erninda'i fa lemi jubme  .i
ciska da le jbusfe .ije mi catlu   4Colin:  "le vorme" - I am still
da.a'u  .i lerfu la fraktur.ue  .i not clear whether "vorme" means a
mi morji fi loi lerfu be la        bit of wood etc., or a hole, or
fraktur.  .i morji  .i mi puzuki   both.  We often use it as if it
zvati le ckule gi'e caca'a tcidu   means the first - if so, then "le
.i mi tcidu le cfika be le ze      vorme" is certainly not what you
bruna bei la .Aleksis.kivis. po'u  mean here!
le natmytercfi  .i le poi le drata
be mi cu tcidu fi ke'a ku'o          Nick:  I believe "vorme" is a
selpapri1 cu te prina loi lerfu be doorway, rather than a piece of
la antik.  .i lemi selpapri goi    wood.  I don't see why the piece
ko'a te prina loi lerfu be la      of wood can't be a "vrogai"
fraktur.  .i lenu tcidu de pe ta'i (doorway lid).
la fraktur. kei pu nandu mi gi'e
ca frili  .i mi djica lenu tcidu     Lojbab:  It is the doorway that
fi ko'a kei mu'i lenu lemi patfu   is intended in the gismu, but not
puzu prina loi lerfu loi ko'a      in the sense of "door frame".  The
papri  .i lemi patfu ze'u prina    new place structure for "vorme"
.i lenu ri go'i kei nanca li vobi  has a place structure suggestive
.i kiku mi catlu le vi lerfu be la of route, emphasizing the two
fraktur.  .i lerfu  .i bacru.ue zo sides it connects, while noting
coi  .i barjyjatna.a'a  .i la      that it is also within some larger
nitcion. co'ava se zvaju'o2 mi  .i structure, and hence not just any
ra xance rinsa mi .ije mi spuda    route.  By comparison, "canko"
rinsa  .i la nitcion. caca'a xebni emphasizes the wall in which it is
la fraktur.3                       found.  I like "vrogai" and
                                   "vroca'o" and "vroge'u" for the
    __________________________     cover and opening and frame,
                                   respectively.  The gismu list has
  Iain's first text, with rough    been clarified to reflect this.
    translation and commentary
                                   5Nick:  I'd prefer something more
                                   explicit than "pezyjicla", like
                                   "raktu" or "cuntu".
                                     Lojbab:  I agree.  This smells
1Nick:  We are going to see a lot  malglico, since there is no clear
of preposed relatives, I predict,  implicature as to what is being
simply because they kill off a lot 'stirred up' in the context.
of the worry about terminating     Transferring figurative uses be-
them when postposed.  They are not tween languages, if you must do
just an affectation.               so, should be confined to
                                   situations where the reader/-
2Nick:  Nice to see one's dikyjvo  listener can clearly identify the
picked up :)                       figurative values for the place
                                   structure of the 'figure' - in the
3Nick:  Brilliant ending.  I       case of "jicla" (stir), the
mean...  so wonderfully deadpan.   agent/force doing the stirring,
You're getting quite good at this  the 'fluid' being stirred, and the
:)                                 utensil/implement doing the stir-

cando  .icabo mi terbei lo notci   ku'o gi'e denpa lenu se zvaju'o da
poi ve cusku le se du'u lu'o la    no'u ga ko'a gi lo selfu noida'i
vei,on. joi la nitcion. lu'u goi   bevri loi ckafi mi
ko'a noi zvati le kafybarja po'u     ni'o lemi jubme cu xekri seja'e
la *jbolaz. cu djica lenu penmi mi loni to'ercitno  .i ra ve srakysku
vi ra  .i ®lu ?ma ?mo li'uЇ na se  zo mi ce'o prami bu ce'o ®lu le
spuda  .i ko'a jundi casnu la      cmacrnalgebra li'uЇ  .i mi nelci
fraktur.  .i mi zo'u la fraktur.   le jubme  .i mi de'a morji fi la
no'e cinri  .i mi co'a zutse ne'a  vei,on. .e la nitcion. gi'e co'a
lo jubme poi lamji le me ko'a6     pensi  .i mi si'a se cinri so'a
                                   klesi be lo sinxa ciste ra'anai
__________________________________ ledu'u vo'e ge'ikau te javni mu'u
ring.  For the context given, it   le sucta cmacrnalgebra gi mecritli
isn't really even clear to me that mu'u loi rarna ja rutni bangu7  .i
Iain wants "jicla" as opposed to
6Colin:  I felt sure there was     something like this, "da pe" would
something wrong with "le me ko'a", be better, but still likely
but I think you have actually      wouldn't get the definiteness
invented a new idiom with which we across.  There's "da voi srana",
will now doubtless be plagued.     but that's not really worth con-
                                   sidering as a general solution.
  Mark:  It's actually an attempt  Too long.  "le pada pe ko'a"
at a sort of metonymy.  I think    doesn't seem all that bad to me,
"le me ko'a" is not the way to go, but then, in your shoes I would
I greatly prefer "zo'epe ko'a".  I probably say to hell with defi-
sort of think of "zo'epe" as       niteness and stick with "zo'epe".
almost like a LAhE word (of        Not that that's necessarily the
course, with different grammar)    right thing to do.  I'm still less
that introduces metonymy for the   enthusiastic about "le me ko'a"
sumti it's on.  "le me ko'a" seems than Nick is.
dangerously close to just plain
"ko'a".                              Lojbab:  I think "le me ko'a" is
                                   fine for original Lojban, but
  Nick:  "le me ko'a" is the       would probably have used "le ko'a
solution to metonymy - so much     co'e" as a translation for English
better than my "zu'i pe ko'a".     "theirs" which more matches the
                                   'possessive' implicature of the
  Iain:  I've been reprimanded in  English.  The "me" version is more
the past for using "zo'e" with a   vague, and could extend to include
relative clause, and told to use   "ko'a" as well as things belonging
"da".  Admittedly, I think it was  to "ko'a".
a "poi" relative clause, which may   On the other hand, I suspect
make all the difference.  Neither  that "la'e" and "tu'a" between
"zo'epe ko'a" of "da pe ko'a" seem them handle metonymy fine, and I
to express the definiteness that I think better than "le me ...".  It
wanted.  I could use "le" with a   would not be very English-like to
sumti, provided I insert an        handle "theirs" as a "la'e" or a
explicit quantifier "le pa da pe   "tu'a", but it might be very
ko'a", which is starting to get    lojbanic to do so.
out of hand for a simple concept
like "theirs".  The voting is      7Lojbab:  Iain translates this
still open on this one.            sentence as:

  Mark:  Well, you have a good       I too am interested in all kinds
point.  "zo'e pe" is specifically    of symbolic system, whether
anti-definite.  It's good for        formal ones like abstract
metonymy in which you're really      algebra, or more flexible ones
not trying to be specific, but are   such as natural and artificial
willing to be elliptical.  For       languages.

la'edi'u mukti lenu mi tadni la    quietly, when I got a message
lojban. kei noi ki'u ke'a mi zvati saying that Veijo and Nick, who
la jbolanzu                        are at the Cafe *Jbolaz, want to
  no'i lo be'ipre cu klama co      see me there.  "What's up?" - no
veirgau lemi selcpe po'u lo barda  reply.  They are deep in a
carmi bo ckafi gi'ebabo nalsirkla  discussion about Fraktur.  Me? I
mo'ize'oku na'e mo'ifa'a le        can take it or leave it.  I sit
jupku'a  .i .uaru'e simlu fa lenu  down at a table next to theirs and
ko'a ze'apu naje ca zvaju'o mi  .i wait for someone to notice me,
mi'a simxu rinsa  .i la'aru'e mi   either them or one of the people
bazi facki le krinu be lenu        serving who might bring me some
sutrygau8                          coffee.
                                     My table is dark with age.  On
__________________________________ it is carved "I", a heart, and
              ______               "algebra".  I like this table.  I
                                   forget about Veijo and Nick and
  "OK, OK!", I say, barging        start to ponder.  I too am
through the door, bruising my      interested in all kinds of
shoulder, "What's all the fuss     symbolic system, whether formal
about?"  I was sitting at home     ones like abstract algebra, or
                                   more flexible ones such as natural
__________________________________ and artificial languages.  That's
  There was much debate about this the reason I'm studying Lojban,
sentence on the net, with Iain     which is why I'm at the "*Jbolaz".
eventually deciding to use           A waiter comes and takes my
"ra'anai".  Not proposed in the    order for a large, strong coffee,
discussion, and I think better and and wanders off, not heading for
more lojbanic, is a logical con-   the kitchen.  Ah, it looks like
nective approach.  I also think    they've spotted me at last.  We
that "all kinds of" is better ex-  say hello.  Perhaps now I'll find
pressed using a massifier gadri,   out the reason for all the rush.
since he is not really interested    _____________________________
in the categories, but in the
things comprising the various        Translation of Mark Shoulson's
categories (or maybe he is a              Text and Commentary
                                     ni'oni'o vanci  .icabo nalcladu
  .i mi si'a se cinri piso'a loi   ne'i le ckafybarja  .i le bi'u
  sinxa ciste ju gu'a te javni be  remna cu klama mo'ine'i ra  .i
  mu'u le sucta cmacrnalgebra be'o ko'a goi ra9 zutse ne'a lo jubme
  gi mecritli be mu'u loi rarna ja
  rutni bangu
  The two "be" clauses might be    ____________________
more readable as parentheses:
                                   9Lojbab:  I'm wondering why Mark
  .i mi si'a se cinri piso'a loi   waited till this sentence to as-
  sinxa ciste ju gu'a te javni (to sign ko'a.  It makes things unnec-
  mu'u le sucta cmacrnalgebra toi) essarily more difficult on the
  gi mecritli (to mu'u loi rarna   reader to have done so, since he
  ja rutni bangu toi)              ends up with two "ra"s with dif-
                                   ferent values only a few words
8Nick:  Perhaps "mukti", and       apart.  I don't frown on this so
"sutrybai".                        much with "ri" which is fairly
                                   strictly confined to the next pre-
  Lojbab:  Iain has to decide:     vious sumti, but "ra" is loosely
Does he want an explanation for    enough defined that one has to
the summons, or does he really     stop and think about whether it
want to know the motive.  Having   might or might not mean the same
multiple words for "why" makes you as the previous usage.
really need to think about what is   Since he is dealing with a 3rd
really sought after.               person narration section of a

.i ko'a cpedu loi tcati le         __________________________________
kafybarja se jibri  .i ba so'o     seen it before and figured it de-
mentu ko'a se dunda loi tcati gi'e served some exposure, and this
co'aru'inai pinxe ri               seemed like a possible usage.  I'm
  ni'o ko'a ca lenu ko'a pinxe loi going back to "ko'a", so it's sort
tcati po ko'a cu zgana lenu le     of an old topic... isn't it?
bi'u nanmu cu se dunda lei ckafi
poi ra pu cpedu ke'a  .ije le        Lojbab: The purpose is to allow
nanmu goi ko'e cu pencu le kabri   you to change topics ("ni'o"), and
poi se nenri lei ckafi ku'o le     possibly even contexts, but then
degji gi'enai pinxe lei ckafi      to resume the old context at will
.ije mu'i zo'epela'edi'u10 ko'e    with "no'i" ("ni'o" and "no'i" can
cusku ®lu .o'onai ju'i do'u ko     be subscripted, I believe, if you
lebna lei vi ckafi gi'ebabo bevri  are dealing with many contexts).
fi mi fe lei je'a glare ku'i ckafi Context is typically defined in
li'uЇ le bevri be lei ckafi be'o   terms of a certain space-time
goi ko'i  .i ko'i cusku ®lu .u'u   tense reference and possibly a set
.ie ga'inai li'uЇ gi'ebabo lebna   of anaphora assignments.
le kabri  .i ko'i krefu klama gi'e   Major intended uses are for a
bevri lei ckafi vau ba so'o mentu  story-within-a-story (for which
.i ko'e krefu pencu le kabri  .i   the concept was invented - I've
ko'e cusku ®lu .i'esai ba'e ti     been working on an Arabian Nights
ku'i cu je'a glare ckafi li'uЇ  .i translation for a few years now,
ko'e gleki pinxe lei ckafi po ko'e and that collection nests stories
  no'i11 ko'a zgana la'eso'odi'u12 several levels deep, as characters
.i ba so'o mentu ko'a tavla le     in a story tell a story with
                                   characters who in turn tell
__________________________________ stories, etc., continually popping
story, assigning with "le ...      from level to level with stories
remna goi ko'a" in the previous    stopping, starting, and being
sentence is only fair.             interrupted for metalinguistic
                                   comment or action at a higher
10Nick:  zo'epela'edi'u is more    story level), for comparison
accurate here than ".isemu'ibo",   between two situations, and a
but it's still a mouthful.  I'm    whole bunch of oddball things that
not confident about the usage of   happen in stylistics of longer
"ku'i".                            narratives.
                                     The conventions of switching
  Mark:  I thought ".isemu'ibo"    anaphora assignments (i.e. the
wasn't quite right, since after    definition of ko'a, ko'e, da, de,
all, it wasn't his touching the    etc.) or tense reference (the
cup, but rather what he felt that  value assigned with "ki" are not
made him refuse.  I'm glad you saw well established because "no'i"
that too.  "zo'epela'edi'u" is a   has not been used much used.
bit much to say, but not             Other applications are certainly
impossible.  Note my "zo'epe"      possible, and will have to be
metonymizer.                       developed through usage.
  I was actually proud of the      Hopefully they will be generally
"ku'i" there.  "Bring me some hot  consistent with the originally
coffee (as opposed to this tepid   intended purposes.
                                   12Mark:  I don't like the way
  Lojbab:  How about "tu'a         "di'u" only means "the last utter-
la'edi'u"?                         ance".  It's bringing number
                                   considerations into Lojban where
11Colin: Can anybody explain       it never had them before.  I'd
"no'i" to me, please?              have expected it to mean "the last
                                   utterance(s)", with optional
  Mark: Not me.  I don't know what number, like everything else.  You
it is either.  I threw it in       can't always use tu'e/tu'u,
because I've pretty much never

__________________________________ bi'unai selpinxe bevri goi ko'i
sometimes it's used in             .i ko'a cusku ®lu .ia do pu bevri
afterthought.  I had to use that   lei naldrata ckafi ta vau ?xu
hideous "la'e joigi di'ugide'u"    li'uЇ  .i ko'i cusku ®lu go'i
[in the original draft of this     .o'unairo'a .u'uro'a li'uЇ  .i
story], counting on "de'u" to be   ko'a cusku ®lu ko .i'i na jikca
non-number-specific.  Had to use   dunku  .i mi puzuze'u se jibri
forethought because otherwise      loinu13 bevri loi selpinxe vi lo
"la'e" would stick only to "di'u"  gusta  .iseki'ubo mi djuno tu'a le
and not the whole thing.           do se zukte  .i da poi prenu cu
                                   genai pinxe lei ckafi gi pencu le
  Iain:  In the latest version of  kabri gi'e na'e djica tu'a lei
the grammar, LAhE applies to a     ckafi ki'u lo za'i na'e
whole sumti, with an explicit      pe'ise'inai14 glare  .ije semu'i
optional LUhU terminator, so you
could use    afterthought.         __________________________________
  Why not "[le] re di'u" - the       A possibility to consider when
previous two utterances, "so'o     you are dealing with a range of
de'u" - several recent utterances, sentences and don't want to count,
etc.                               would be to use di'upezi/-
  [Mark liked this approach and    di'upeza/di'upezu to indicate
incorporated it in the printed     relative length of referenced
version.]                          utterance.

  Lojbab:  I ask you:  What is an  13Mark: I also replaced a lot of
'utterance'?  In Lojban, an        "lenu"'s with "loinu"'s, though
utterance can be more than a       this is not common practice.  I
single sentence, a paragraph even, did this because of the article by
or whatever.  I would think this   JCB that was posted here not long
would be familiar to net people    ago, in which he pointed out that
from Cowan's method of net         a lot of our "lenu"'s are really
quotation on Lojban-List: "la loj- massified:  you're not waiting for
bab. cusku di'e", where "di'e" is  a specific event of a cab's
the forward counting utterance     arriving, you're waiting for a
equivalent of the back-counting    manifestation of the mass of such
"di'u".                            events.  I thought JCB had a very
  Thus, the 'utterance' to which   good point there.
"di'u" refers is not that well
defined, and may indeed refer to   14Colin: I don't think you can use
multiple sentences.  Grammati-     "pe'ise'inai" in the way that I
cally, the construct labelled      think you are trying to.  It reads
'utterance' is a single sentence   "didn't want to drink the coffee
or partial sentence.  However, it  because it was not (I think but
has generally been agreed, for ex- it's not my issue) hot."  It
ample, that ".ije" joining, or     seemed to me that you were trying
".ibo" joining gives a logical     to make it "... it was not (in
unit (as does ".itu'e ...tu'u", as their opinion) hot", which you
you noted).  Thus the concept      cannot do with attitudinals.
utterance extends to be what is
labelled an "utterance-string" in    Mark: I'm not so sure about
the grammar, or perhaps even to    this.  I'm not 100% positive about
the construct labelled "text-B",   what "se'i"/"se'inai" do.
which can include multiple         Somewhere in the past someone said
paragraphs.  Now the usage default they could be used in this way, to
convention of 'utterance' has      tag attitudinals explicitly as
tended to be a single sentence,    belonging to the speaker or not.
but it need not always be so.  If  Oh, I remember.  It was when Nick
context suggests a longer          and I were discussing whether
utterance is intended, fine.       attitudinals on "du'u" in the x2
                                   of "djuno" applied to the speaker
                                   or to the x1.  Actually, we were

loinu da minde mi lenu basti lei   tu'a le slabu lisri be le bebna
ckafi loi glare ckafi kei kei mi   seljibri ka'u li'uЇ  .i ko'i cusku
lebna lei ckafi gi'e na'o denpa    ®lu le lisri ki'a li'uЇ  .i ko'a
fu'i so'e mentu tezu'e lenu tu'a   cusku ®lu .ue do punai ?xu ve
lei ckafi cu glaryri'a le kabri    lisri fu ri li'uЇ  .i ®lu noroi ve
kei fo lenu krefu dunda lei        lisri li'uЇ  .i ®lu .ai mi te
naldrata ckafi  .i za'a do panra   lisri  .i tu'e ka'u da'i puzuki da
zukte  .i la'ede'u ve ctuca15 fu   te bende le re seljibri  .i fo'a
                                   goi le te bende ca le fanmo be le
__________________________________ jeftu cu pleji le se jerna le re
discussing it with reference to    seljibri no'u lu'i le prije
"kau" then, but this was when      seljibri goi fo'e ge'u jo'u le
"kau" was still evolving.  Lojbab  bebna seljibri goi fo'i  .i le se
said you could use "kause'i" and   jerna cu rupnu li panono
"kause'inai" to distinguish who    .ijesemu'ibo fo'a pleji lei jdini
was "knowing" (remember, at the    be ta'i le pelji jdini fo'e .e
time we were considering "kau" as  fo'i  .i fo'e ckire fo'a gi'ebabo
mostly just "known!"), since       cliva gi'e gleki ki'u lenu le
"se'i" always made things apply to jdini cu se vamji li su'orau  .i
the speaker.  I fear you're        fo'i na'e gleki  .i cusku ®lu
probably right anyway, but I hope  .o'onai mi to'e lazni gunka fi'o
you're wrong, since your second    te bende do ca piro le jeftu  .i
reading, the one I intended, is    do pleji levi malpelji  .i'enaisai
such an elegant way to say it....  mi  .i le'o ko pleji fi mi fe le
  [Later ...] I didn't change ..., je'u je'a jdini no'u lo sicni
e.g. Colin's objection to          li'uЇ  .isemu'ibo fo'a pleji fo'i
"pe'ise'inai" for "in their        lo gusminra sicni poi se fepni li
opinion", since last I heard the   mu  .iseki'ubo fo'i gleki klama le
jury's still out on what it should fo'i zdani tu'u  .i tu'a di'u xe
mean, and I like the way it        ctuca fi ledu'u jdice nagi'apubo
sounds.                            e'ucai zgana  .i .ua ri'a je'unai
                                   ka'u le sego'i zo "za'a" noi cmavo
  Lojbab:  Mark's usage is fairly  fi lesi'o zgana ku'o cu rafsi zo
consistent with what we had in     zabna li'uЇ16
mind for "se'inai", but is vague
as to who actually holds the
opinion other than the narrator.   ____________________
Lojban intentionally makes
specifically attributing emotions  16General Comments:
to others difficult (as do many
natural languages), and I would      Mark:  I could use some better
prefer such comments to be met-    use of UIs, I think.  My grammar
alinguistic discursives using      gets very complex sometimes.
"sei".  In this case, "sei da
jinvi", or "sei vo'a jinvi", or      Nick:  Hm, this one is... sober.
even probably "sei jinvi" says the That's ok, though.  We were about
same thing, but makes the          due for sober :)  The grammatical
attribution of opinion a claim     complexity (and I presume the same
rather than an empathic            is the case for my work) means
understanding/attribution of       that you have to read the piece
emotion (which is what I see as    slowly, but that's not impossible.
the proper meaning of "se'inai"
modifying an attitudinal).           Colin:  Your grammar is not
                                   complex compared to some of us ...
15Mark:  I had trouble getting     - but you let it get quite
across the meanings of "this is    embedded, which is a little hard
illustrated by the old story" and  to read; but it's good that we are
"the moral of this is..."  Places  seeing a variety of different
of "ctuca" have done the job, and  styles.  Keep it up.
reasonably well, but maybe not       Some of your UI's are very good,
very well.                         and others I disagree with.

  Mark's translation uses Lojban   "You brought that guy the same
pronouns to preserve the gender-   coffee, didn't you?"
free qualities of his Lojban17:      "Um...  yeah, I did..."
                                     "Don't worry.  I used to work as
  It was quiet in the coffeehouse  a waiter in a restaurant, so I
one evening, and a person (ko'a)   know what you did.  There are
came in.  ko'a sat at a table and  people who don't drink the coffee,
ordered tea from the cafe          they just touch the cup and don't
employee.  After a few minutes,    want the coffee because they think
ko'a was given some tea and began  it's not hot enough.  So when they
sipping intermittently at it.      tell me to get them some fresh
  As ko'a was sitting drinking     coffee, I just take the coffee and
ko'a's tea, ko'a saw a man being   wait a few minutes until the
given the coffee which he'd        coffee warms the cup and bring
ordered.  The man touched the cup  them the same coffee back again.
that contained the coffee, but     And I see you've done the same.
didn't drink the coffee.  So he    That's really the moral of the old
said, "Hey!  Take this coffee back story about the foolish laborer."
and bring me some hot coffee!" to    "What story?"
the waiter (ko'i).                   "You never heard it?"
  "Yes sir, sorry..."  And ko'i      "Never."
took the cup away.                   "OK, I'll tell it then.  Once
  A few minutes later, ko'i        upon a time, there was a manager
returned carrying the cup.  He     (fo'a) with two workers.  At the
(the man) touched the cup again,   end of the week, he paid his two
and said "Ah!  Now that's some hot workers:  the wise worker (fo'e)
coffee!" and happily drank his     and the foolish worker (fo'i).
coffee.                            Their salary was $100, so he paid
  ko'a had seen all this happen,   them with paper money.  fo'e
and several minutes later was      thanked fo'a and left, happy
talking to the waiter.  ko'a said, because he was paid so well.
                                     "fo'i wasn't happy.  "Look!  I
                                   worked hard for you all week, and
__________________________________ now you're paying me with this
                                   dumb piece of paper!?  You better
  Lojbab:  Of the writings         pay me with some real money, with
generated so far for this project, coins!"  So fo'a paid fo'i with
Mark's has by far the lowest       shiny coins, worth 5 cents, and
density of lujvo, and he is        fo'i went happily home.
sparing in the use of the more       "This all teaches that you have
arcane cmavo, too.  I think that   to look closely before passing
simplicity of vocabulary,          judgement.  In fact, that's why
especially when there is no        "za'a", which represents the idea
dictionary, more than makes up for of observation, is also an affix
a little complexity in the         for "zabna"/favourable."
grammar.  After all, if a sentence 
is a little complex, you can         Commentary on Iain's 2nd Piece
always bracket things more clearly     (no translation available)
by including a few optional
terminators.  But if you can't     .i bazi lenu mi'a simxu lenu rinsa
figure out what a couple lujvo in  kuku lo nanmu poi nanca li so'a cu
the sentence mean, you may be      klama pu'e le na'e sirji18 ne'i le
completely lost.

17Lojbab:  On the other hand, Mark ____________________
specified one gender where it
doesn't seem that his story needed 18Nick (on an earlier version of
it:  why did the person who        this):  [Iain wrote:] "lo nanmu
ordered the coffee have to be a    poi nanca li so'a cu klama fo le
man?  He could have used "prenu",  na'e sirji ne'i le barja gi'e co'a
or "remna".                        zutse ca'u mi"

barja gi'e co'a zutse ca'u mi  .i  jinvi ledu'u vo'a na kakne lenu
le nanmu goi ko'a cusku le se      tu'ari xamgu ko'e ca lenu xamgu le
du'u19 ri puzi se gunta lo puzu    lanzu20  .isemu'ibo le go'i cpedu
respa pe la'o ly. saurischia ly.
.i ®lu .iku'i loi respa pe
la'edi'u cu puzu ji'esti li'uЇ se
cusku mi  .i ®lu .ila'aru'e go'i   ____________________
.iboku'i simlu fa lenu noda ve
cilre la'edi'u fo ra cu'usa'a ko'a 20Lojbab (on Iain's final draft
.i lenu mi'a simxu lenu kansa cu   text submission for JL17):  [Iain
nanca li reno  .i mi co'aki kurji  wrote:]
ko'e goi le respa ca lenu ri ca'o
citno  .i mi jinvi ledu'u le mamta   .i le pendo be mi zu'apu kurji
be ko'e cu morsi ba'o lo nanca be    ko'e gi'eku'i puzi co'a speni
li so'o  .ije cumki fa lenu ko'e     gi'e gasnu lenu cfari fa lenu
romoi lu'i le jutsi  .i le pendo     lanzu kuku gi'e jinvi ledu'u
be mi zu'apu kurji ko'e gi'eku'i     vo'a na kakne lenu tu'ari xamgu
puzi co'a speni gi'e gasnu lenu      ge ko'e *gicabo le lanzu
cfari fa lenu lanzu kuku gi'e        This sentence is currently
                                   ungrammatical at the point indi-
__________________________________ cated by an asterisk.  "gi" does
What isn't straight?  The two      not bind with a tense like that -
axes?  Not that obvious in         it is only a place holder.  When
context.                           you go from afterthought ex-
                                   pression:  "ko'e .ecabo le lanzu"
  Iain:  No, it was meant to be    to forethought, we don't currently
the route (or the manner) by which have a way to express both logical
he came in which wasn't straight.  and tense connective at the same
It sounds like this doesn't work.  time.  If we did allow it, it
Perhaps I could try pu'e le na'e   might have to be attached to the
sirji.                             connective, as "gecabo", and not
                                   to the place-holder word "gi".
  Lojbab:  I actually thought that After all, the idea of a
the original was clear, and the    forethought connective is to let
modified version seems less so.    the listener know the relationship
The x4 of klama is a route, and a  between the connectands before ex-
non-straight route is obviously an pressing them.
indirect one that is not the         The easiest expression that I
shortest from point a to point b.  think captures your intended
It is less clear to me what a non- meaning is to scrap the connective
straight process of going is.      and use an expanded tense clause.
Perhaps meaning that he stopped to I made only this minimal change to
talk to people on the way.  I      make the result grammatical, but
would have used "lo" instead of    also discussed this with Nora.
"le" though, since it isn't clear  You might also consider expressing
to the reader listener which       the final clause as:
indirect route/means is the one
intended.  "le" should normally be vo'a na kakne lenu roroi ku tu'ari
something specifically                 xamgu ge ko'e gi le lanzu
identifiable to the listener, and
if not, the speaker should be      or maybe:
prepared to answer the clarifying
question "leki'a" (which?).        vo'a na kakne lenu paroi ku tu'ari
                                       xamgu ge ko'e gi le lanzu
19Lojbab:  Note that "du'u" refers
to a fact or truth, something      or to express the negation as a
known or knowable, while "se du'u" tense:
refers to expressions of such a
fact or truth.  This is being        vo'a noroi kakne lenu paroi ku
clarified in the dictionary cmavo       tu'ari xamgu ge ko'e gi le
list.                                   lanzu

lenu mi curmi lenu basti fi lenu   stura bele menli be lei puzu respa
bilga lenu kurji ko'e  .i mi je'a  .i seki'unai la'ede'u mi pupuziki
curmi  .ijeja'ebo kiku nu'i bi'ogi gasnu lenu xendo ko'e  .i mi'a
ca la'edi'u gi caku dunda loi      puzi klama zo'a lo bende be lo
cidja .e loi djacu ko'e  .ijebo    xanto  .ijeseki'ubo mi mu'i lenu
satre ko'e  .ijebo fi lenu cadzu   djica lenu fanta lenu damba noi
cu kansa fe ko'e  .i ca lo'e vanci cumki fa lenu ke'a se jalge lenu
mi tavla ko'e so'i klesi be lei te ko'e se xrani cu cusku ®lu ko se
cilre be'o ne mu'u le citri be loi kajde fi tu'a le mabru li'uЇ li'uЇ
jmive be va'o le terdi be'obe'o .e mi'e .i,n.
loi jicmu bele saske bele munje    
poi vanbi ma'a  .i jetnu fa lenu    Translation and Commentary on le
ko'e na kakne lenu tavla                   lisri be le serti
.ijeku'iseki'unaibo mi su'oroi
jinvi lenu ko'e jimpe la'e le se     Nora's translation follows in
cusku be mi li'uЇ  .i ®lu .iku'i   italics.  Where Ivan intended a
?mu'ima va'o la'e so'odi'u ko'e    different translation, that is
co'a bradi do li'uЇ  .i ®lu na     given on a third line in a
birti  .i noda ru'a21 jimpe le     different font, or in the
                                   footnotes commenting on Nora's
                                   le lisri be le serti
  vo'a ca noda kakne lenu paroi ku   The story of the stairs.
     tu'ari xamgu ge ko'e gi le      "The Tale of the Stairs"
  We also played with trying to
move the negation down a level       Iain:  Wot, no rhetorical
(which is                          questions in Lojban?
very un-English), but I'm not sure
that the semantics stays intact.     Lojbab:  I note that the final
                                   version uses "noda" with no re-
  vo'a kakne lenu roroi ku tu'ari  striction.  So Iain has actually
     xamgu ganai ko'e ginai le     broadened his meaning beyond
     lanzu                         Nick's assumed "No person
                                   understands" to "Nothing un-
  vo'a kakne lenu noroi ku tu'ari  derstands".  Of course, it may be
     xamgu ge ko'e gi le lanzu     implicit to most people that the
                                   x1 of jimpe is itself sufficiently
  John Cowan will be looking at    restricting.
this area for a possible grammar     Iain's original method of
change to allow some or all of the expressing a rhetorical question
possible constructions of this     seems valid, though at times one
type.  It is perhaps useful for    might want to put the "paunai"
the community to note that most of either at the front of the
the 2 dozen or so changes in the   sentence to forewarn the listener
grammar are like this one would    of the rhetoric nature of the
be; a minor expansion to allow     question, or to delay it,
something that no one ever tried   appending it to a "vau" on the end
before, but which seems plausibly  of the sentence, so that the
understandable when it is tried in listener starts to seriously think
an actual writing.                 about the question and answer,
                                   before being told that no answer
21Nick (on an earlier version):    is expected.
[Iain wrote:] .i ®lu na birti .i     I suspect that the attitudinal
?ma paunai jimpe le stura bele     system offers a variety of other
menli be lei puzu respa            ways to convey rhetorical
                                   statements of this type, including
I'd rather "no prenu cu jimpe",    probably some that don't easily
myself...                          translate to English.

                                   (thick?)24 hand.  He stands in
.i  fitfi'i di'e ro lei ba cusku   front of the stairs.  Pink-lined,
be ledu'u vo'e vo'i na srana       white marble, high stairs.
  Offered is the following to all
who say it doesn't pertain to
them.                              __________________________________
  (Epigram:)  "Dedicated to all
those who will say: `This doesn't    Ivan:  "with lifted forehead"
pertain to me!'"  ('doesn't apply  (showing proud unwillingness to
to me', 'has nothing to do with    conform)".
                                     Lojbab:  I am one who believes
ni'oni'o tu'e (non-translatable)   in making cultural metaphors
®lu do mo li'uЇ preti fi la        explicit in translations,
pacrux. goi fo'a                   especially to a supposedly
  "What are you doing/What are     culture-neutral language (I expect
you?" asks Evil-Spirit.            that you will call me on this
  `Who art thou?' asked the        regularly in return, Ivan, when I
Devil.22                           fail to make my own cultural
                                   metaphors clear.)
.i ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka        Thus, if the lifted forehead
cerda  .ije ro le pidrai mi bruna  signifies pride, include 'pride'
.i .oicai ge le terdi cu to'e      in the tanru:  "jgira ke seke se
melbi gi le remna cu to'e gleki    lafti mebri", or twisting it
li'uЇ                              around for clarity in the relative
  "I'm a peon by birth, and all    clause context: "lo citno nanmu
the poorest are my brothers.       noi lafti le mebri seci'o leka
Alas! The earth is ugly and the    jgira"
people are miserable."
  "I'm a plebeian by birth, and      Ivan:  I thought a lifted
all the tatterdemalions/-          forehead as an expression of pride
ragamuffins are my brethren.  Oh,  was universal, not culturally
how ugly is the earth and how      sensitive, but maybe I was wrong.
miserable are the people!"         Ditto for clenched fists as an
                                   expression of aggressive
.i di'u se bacru lo citno nanmu    impatience.
noi se lafti se mebri gi'e denmi
se xance  .i ri goi ko'a sanli       Lojbab:  You may be right about
crane le serti  .i labyxu'e linji  the universality of the physical
ke blabi roimrmaro ke galtu serti  expressions - I have no idea.  But
  This was uttered by a young man, there is cultural significance in
with raised brow23 and dense       the way each is described, which
                                   may vary between languages, and
                                   there is more than one emotion
____________________               that could be symbolized.  In
                                   (American), phrases like "head
22Lojbab:  "do mo" is elegant, but held high" suggest self-esteem/-
a bit vague to expect a useful     personal pride, while "nose in the
answer with no context in advance  air" suggests hauteur.  But "eyes
to make it clear what is meant.    lifted on high" suggests worship.
Given the answer that was given    All three of these could also be
(which is presumably the infor-    described as having a lifted
mation that the Devil wanted to    forehead, but I've never heard the
hear), I would ask the question as forehead mentioned in an English
"do ?mo prenu" ("You are a what-   metaphor suggesting any of them.
                                   24Nora:  I later figured out that
23Nora:  Not quite sure what this  this was "clenched", but it took a
is.  I presume it means he had a   while.  Perhaps "denmi se polje se
"high" brow.  Perhaps "clani se    xance" (densely-foldedly be-
mebri" (longly be-browed)?         handed)?

  Thus spoke a young man with      ctaru rirxe28 ke to'ekli boxna29
lifted forehead (showing proud     ku savri'a  .i diklo slilu gi'e
unwillingness to conform) and
clenched fists. ... a high         __________________________________
staircase of white marble with     group of people? If you accept
pink veins25.                      that, then leave "prenu" out.

.i ko'a catlu mo'ifa'a le darno ne 27Lojbab:  This kind of long-
di'o lepu'u lei grusi kalsygri be  complex "be" is why "co" is in the
leka pindi26 cu ca simsa be27 loi  language "cu ca savri'a co simsa
                                   loi ctaru rirxe ke to'ekli boxna"
                                   is much clearer, and also seems to
__________________________________ match the order of your intended
                                   translation better.
  Lojbab:  "fist" has been
expressed before as "ball-hand",   28Lojbab:  Does the sound of murky
so "fengu bolci se xance"          waves of a tidal river differ from
(possibly making the whole or some the sound of any other kind of
portion into a lujvo - 'clenched-  waves of a tidal river, or any
fist' for  se fegbolxa'e, 'angry   other river?
fist' for fengu se bolxa'e, or
'anger-clenched hands' fegboi se     Ivan:  The waves are murky
xance).  Again, I favor making the because of the appearance of the
emotional implication (which I am  mobs, and the river is tidal
assuming is correct) explicit in   because of their numbers.  The
the tanru/lujvo.                   observation that these things
  "denmi" used this way in tanru   (especially the first one) don't
will probably not catch on quickly affect the noise is correct, so
with English-speaking readers,     maybe I'll extract this de-
since we don't often use the word  scription from the tanru and
in its literal sense in metaphor.  attach it to the mobs, like so:
The validity of the tanru using    "lei grusi kalsygri be leka pindi
denmi is thus hard to evaluate     bei <like> loi ctaru rirxe ke
before we have a few usages of     to'ekli boxna ca savri'a".  How's
this type in the dictionary (and a that? [Lojbab:  Better, but see my
few other English words besides    answer in the next footnote.]
"dense" to trigger people's
consideration.)  Other than that,  29Ivan:  Bulgarian has the same
I think "denmi" is fine especially word for `wave' and `worry', and
if the "fengu" is also present,    since the mob is something like a
and I would not make much of the   sea made of people, it is not
fact that no one picks up the      clear whether this is meant in a
metaphor right away.               physical or emotional sense, or
  Nick comments further on this
metaphor in a later footnote.        Lojbab:  Then coin a lujvo based
                                   on "worry-wave" (dunku boxna) or
25Lojbab:  If the order of the     "anxious-wave" (xanka boxna),
terms in the translation is        possibly with a "joi" in between
important to you, use "co" and     the terms.  It won't translate to
grouping words to emphasize it:    English, but will accurately
galtu serti co blabi joi labyxu'e  reflect the dichotomy of the
bo linji roimrmaro (high stairs    Bulgarian.  Actually, I think the
of-type white-with-pink-lines      image, in this case, would
marble) is one such approach.      translate, even if the word did
  Ivan:  I confess I never           Combining this with the previous
acquired the habit to use "co".    comments, I propose:

26Nick:  Will "kalsygri be leka    lei grusi kalsygri be leka pindi
pindi" by itself imply that it's a ca mutce savri'a gi'e simsa loi

febvi fengu gi'e lafti loi to'e    girzu cu banro gi'e klama ne'i loi
plana ke xekri birka  .i le        pelxu pulce dilnu  .ije loi sepli
nunpante ke suksa sance .e lei     ti'otra cu mutcne33 leka viskli
fengu nunki'a cu desku le vacri    ze'o le kampu ke grusi vanbi
  He looks, his gaze moving-         The vantage-of-reflection, like
towards [somewhere] far, where the a far artillery (?) sound, slowly
gray mobs of poor are, like tide-  and gravely dissolves (don't quite
river unclear-waves, making noise  get this sentence).  The groups
(clamoring?).  Shifting/agitated   grow and go inside yellow-dust
and boiling anger and lifting of   clouds.  And the separate shadow
meager, black arms30.  The yelps   shapes vary widely in visibility
(?) of protest and the cries of    as they get further from the com-
anger shake the air.               mon gray surroundings.
  His gaze was directed towards      ... and the echo faded away
the far-away, where the grey mobs  slowly, solemnly, like distant
of misery were clamouring... They  cannon fire sounds ... and
were agitated/in a state of        individual silhouettes were
ferment... The outcries of protest emerging more and more clearly
...                                against the common grey
.i le te minra31 cu simsa be lo    
darno ke barda terdanti sance ku     ni'o pa.o'enai to'ercitno34 cu
masno je junri runta32  .i lei     simsa be lepu'u sisku leri se

__________________________________ ____________________
to'ekli dukyjoibo'a be loi ctaru
rirxe                              33Nick:  Given that "zenba" is now
                                   intransitive, replace "mutcne"
30Ivan:  Used to be a "forest of   with "zenba".
dry, black arms".
                                     Lojbab:  If "zenba" were still
  Lojbab: You could get the image  transitive, you would want
of "forest" in there with "grana   "zmabi'o" or "tcebi'o", based on
foldi co lafti loi to'e plana ke   "binxo" instead of "cenba"
xekri birka", paralleling the
image of "forest" = "ricfoi"       34Ivan:  The ".o'enai" was
("tree-field"), which is the lujvo intended to cater for him being
that has been most used.           "some [old man]", whom no one
                                   knows or cares for.
31Nick:  I'd use "sanselminra".
"te minra" (where something is       Lojbab:  Ivan originally used
reflected to) means "echo" less    "slabu".  "slabu" is defined as
than does "se minra" (that which   the "old" which is opposite of
is reflected).                     "new", and not as the opposite of
                                   "young".  This has caused a lot of
32Lojbab:  Again a place where     people writing in Lojban to change
"co" would make the text easier to to "to'ercitno".  This works but
understand.  I also would use      it seems clumsy to define "old" as
"canci" instead of "runta"; I      an opposite.  I think that with
cannot figure out what might go in the proper value for the places,
the places of "runta" for an echo  "slabu" can serve both meanings,
dissolving: "... cu masno je junri but have apparently not been
canci co simsa loi darno ke barda  convincing.  How about "ji'ecla"
terdanti sance".  (I also put a    (alive-long) or "ma'ucla" (mature-
"loi" here on the cannon sounds.)  long) or "revycla" (survive-long),
I don't know about the original    with the latter or zatcla/za'icla
Bulgarian, but "solemn" to me can  (exist-long), or teicla/temcla
imply "somber/gloomy/sad" at least (time interval-long) serving for
as much as "serious", or at least  non-living things that have been
both.  Perhaps "jurdri"? in place  in their current state for a long
of "junri".                        time?

cirko ka citno be'o ni'akro be     selxaksu taxfu gi'e catlu le galtu
fa'a le terdi ku dzukla35  .i lo   serti sepi'o lo tinbe je simsa be
cucycau36 cmaxli cu jgari lera37   le rulnkentaure,a bei leka blanu
                                   ku kanla38  .i catlu je cisma

                                     Ivan: How would that work?  I'm
  Ivan:  I wouldn't replace        not sure I understand what you
"to'ercitno" with anything else.   mean.
It doesn't matter that the man has
lived long.  It matters that he is   Lojbab:  Since this is a new
not young any more.                paragraph, "ru" should not go back
                                   any further than the beginning of
35Lojbab:  Again, a "be" that      the paragraph.  The first sumti of
should be made into a "co".  In    the paragraph is the original
addition, I think the old man is   reference to the old one, and the
like a seeker, and not like a      obvious referent of "ru".  In
seeking and the "pu'u" should go   addition, counting minimally based
away (though Nora figured out your on your text would give "ra" to
intent), while what he is seeking  the earth and "ru" to the "ri" of
is probably the state of his being "leri".
young, and not the property.         On the other hand, a far more
Putting all this together might    clear back-reference would have
give:  "... cu dzukla co ni'akro   been "le go'i" which clearly picks
be fa'a le terdi be'o simsa lo     up the x1 of the previous
sisku le selcri za'i vo'a citno".  sentence, the old man.
                                     Note that since this anaphoric
36Ivan:  That is "lunbyseljma",    reference is occurring in the
but I chose to go for the          middle of an extremely picturesque
alliteration and brevity of        set of metaphors, grasping the
"cucycau".  I trust it is          clothes of the earth is quite
understood as meaning the same.    imaginable as a metaphor.  Mean-
                                   while, since Nora translated from
37Nora:  I wasn't sure which       your original text, which had "lo
referent to use for "ra".  The     slabu" instead of "pa to'ercitno",
possible referents are:  the       she interpreted the old ones as
earth, the old one (via "ri" in    plural (you had just been talking
"leri se cirko"), his lost youth,  of masses and the Lojban gave no
the lost youth of the old one, the hint of sudden focus on
process of searching for the lost  individuals ("to'unai" or
youth, and (finally) the original  "su'anai" might have discursively
reference to old one himself.  I   indicated this change of detail
didn't initially pick up the "ri"  level).  Thus it might be that one
(in "leri se cirko") as a          girl is holding a mob of old peo-
countable sumti because I missed   ples' clothes, or even a mob of
it (real easy to miss when it's    unshod little girls is holding
compounded with the "le").         onto the clothes of the old
                                   people.  In comparison to these
  Ivan: The old one was what I     images, grasping the "worn-out
wanted.  The wee lass is "ri", and clothes" of the earth does not
the earth, the youth and the       seem that far-fetched.
process have no garments for her     All of this makes it clear that
to cling to.                       "ra" and "ru" have rather limited
                                   usefulness unless you are dealing
  Nora: I think I'd have been more with simple sentences where back-
comfortable with picking up the    counting is easy.
original reference at the
beginning of the paragraph using   38Lojbab:  Nora was particularly
"ru".                              pleased with herself for figuring

  An old one, like a searcher for  high stairs with obedient39,
his/her lost youth, walks stooped  cornflower-blue eyes.  Looking and
to the ground.  An unshod little   smiling.
girl grasps someones/ somethings     Some old man was coming, stooped
worn-out clothes and looks at the  to the ground, as though he was
                                   looking for his lost youth  ...
                                   was holding his [sc. the old
                                   man's] ragged/tattered garment (in
__________________________________ order not to get lost in the
out  "cornflower blue", whatever   crowd)...
that is.                           
                                   .i loi selpopseltau je grusi je
  Ivan:  Just bright blue.         cinla remtra cu trixe dzukla gi'e
Cornflowers are often mentioned in gunma sanga lo selsno ke mrori'i
Bulgarian literature.  The reader  zgike  .i da kercrori'a siclu fi
is expected to have seen many of   le ctebi .i de noi daski nenri se
them, which I (being a urban boy)  xance cu cmila sepi'o lo cladu je
haven't, but I know what colour    rufsu voksa .ije lede kanla cu
they are.  The reader is also      jarco leka fenki
supposed to guess that bright blue   Rag-covered, gray, thin forms
as an eye colour suggests          walked behind and sang together
innocence.  This is not the case   slow, funereal music (dirges?)40.
in all cultures (and in            Someone ear-splitting-ly whistled
particular, not in traditional     from the lips.  Someone, with
Bulgarian culture - in our         hands in pockets, laughed in a
folklore all eyes must be black),  loud, rough voice.  His eyes
but that's how the author meant    showed insanity.
it.                                  ... Someone was whistling
                                   sharply. ... insanity was burning
  Lojbab:  Thus adding a modifying in his eyes.
term to the tanru and grouping     
terms would make the meaning clear   ni'o ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka
to those who do not know the       cerda  .ije ro le pidrai mi bruna
cultural implication: "<innocent-  .i .oicai ge le terdi cu to'e
(cornflower-bo-blue)>-eyes"        melbi gi le remna cu to'e gleki
  Nora said that the context       .i .iunai vu gapru  .i .o'onai
suggested "cornflower", and sure   li'uЇ
enough, you had used the genus       "I am a peon by birth, and all
name for cornflower in your        the poorest are my brothers.
le'avla.                           Alas! The earth is ugly and the
                                   people are miserable.  The high-
  Ivan:  The full name of the      ups - I spit on them!41"
plant is Centaurea cyanus.  It is
not all blue (the stem and leaves  ____________________
are green), but I hope I still can
use it in this way.                39Ivan:  Or "mild" or "meek"
  Lojbab:  Certainly, since the
author did so.  If there was         Lojbab:  I might have tried
doubt, you could specifically add  "cumla" (humble), "fegycau"
"flower" after the le'avla, but I  (anger-without), or "nalvli" (non-
suspect that the flower is the     powerful).
plausible referent whenever a
flowering plant is used as the     40Ivan:  Just a funeral song,
basis for a color.  On the other   which they were singing in a
hand, if you used cauliflower/-    choir.
broccoli as the basis for a color
description, you'd have to be more 41Ivan:  "Oh, ye up there, ye..."
specific - indeed, I think I have  (Menace.)  He's not really going
seen both vegetables used to       to talk to them, therefore I
describe colors in English.        spared the "doi".

                                   ca tcica krori'a le xadni fa'a
.i di'u se bacru lo citno nanmu    ko'a
noi se lafti se mebri gi'e dukri'a   "Sir, do you hate the high-up?"
denmi se xance                     asked Evil-Spirit, who slyly bowed
  This was uttered by a young man, to him44.
with raised brow and agonizingly     `You hate those up there?' asked
dense hands42.                     the Devil and leaned towards him.
.i ®lu .io ?xupe'i43 do xebni lei  .i ®lu .aisai mi ba vefsfa lei vu
vu gapru li'uЇ preti fi fo'a noi   mabla nobli joi turni  .i mi ri
                                   kusru vefsfa seka'i45 leimi bruna

__________________________________ __________________________________

  Lojbab:  It seems to me that a     Lojbab:  "paunai", generally
vocative that is not meant for the before the sentence, is the marker
referent is expressible by         for a question not to be answered;
"ju'inai".  An alternative would   i.e. a rhetorical question.  In
be to use a prenex to achieve an   this case, you could also just
impersonal topicalization.         omit the question word and start
Perhaps something like:  "levu     off with "pe'i do xebni ...".  I
[mal]gapru .iunai zo'u do .au ve   think such direct statements or
sputu .o'onai"                     rhetorical questions serve to make
                                   the ".io" rather a lesser mark of
42Ivan:  No, "threateningly        respect than it might be.  Note
clenched fists", "fists clenched   that, in American English at
in menace".                        least, "Sir" is commonly used to
                                   address someone you don't know the
  Nick: Maybe "kajde" should be in name of in a non-insulting manner,
that tanru?                        and doesn't necessarily convey a
  The tanru with denmi doesn't     lot of respect, so don't make too
seem to be working.  What about    much of Nora's choice of the word.
"ja'itra denmi xance" - grasp-form
dense? ("jgari" alone implies that 44Ivan:  "and leaned towards him",
the youth is "ca'a" grasping "da   certainly not "bowed to him".
poi se jgari"
                                     Nick:  Hm. I was thinking of
  Lojbab:  If not "kajde", then    "kroxadjbi", but I don't think
perhaps "capti'i" (peril-sug-      "krori'a" need be taken as "to
gesting), though "capyjde" might   bow" - that's more "xadykro
be better still (peril-warning).   rinsa".

43Ivan:  It is a rhetoric question   Lojbab:  You might need a "mo'i"
(indeed, the behaviour of the      on that "fa'a" to get the motion,
youth leaves little doubt).  Maybe and I think the "ko'a" can then be
"pei" (`don't answer') instead of  ellipsized.  "noi ca tcica xadmu'u
"pe'i" (`I think you do')?  The    le stedu mo'ifa'a".  As a sumti
".io" was a faint attempt to cater tcita, I tend to like "zo'i" more
for the fact that this is the only than "fa'a", though I don't think
occurrence of the formal pronoun   you can ellipsize the "ko'a" in
in the tale.  It doesn't really    that case, since the default
have to mean anything, and "Sir"   referent of "zo'i" is the
is just a little bit too polite    speaker/narrator.
for its use here to be fair.
                                   45Ivan:  Wrong BAI, it seems.  He
  Nick:  Hang on, "pei" is the     wants to avenge his brethren, not
attitudinal interrogative, "pe'i"  necessarily on their behalf (maybe
the opinion.  What you currently   they don't even know who has
have translates to me as "You do,  caused their misery).  "venfu"
don't you." I think the ".io"      wants one more argument place,
should stay.]                      therefore I went for "vefsfa", but

goi ko'u noi simsa be le canre bei   Oh, I will take vengeance on
leka pelxu ku se flira zi'e noi    those princes1 and princes248. ...
zmadu be le la gaimast. si'erbi'e  who moan in a more ominous/-
bei leni tepri'a ku se cmoni46  .i sinister way than the December
ko viska leko'u lunbe ke ciblu ve  blizzards.
flecu xadni .i ko tirna leko'u     
cmoni  .i .ai mi ko'u venfu  .i    .i fo'a cisma
le'o ko curmi li'uЇ                The spirit smiles.
  "I will have revenge on those    
damned royalty.  I will wreak upon .i ®lu mi jibri bandu lei vu gapru
them a cruel vengeance on behalf   .ije mi se le'irbai gi'anai
of my brothers, with sand-yellow   lacti'a ri li'uЇ
faces and who moan with more than  "My job is to defend the high-
a December-blizzard worth of       up49.  I am fined (?)50 if I am
scaring.  See their bare, bleeding traitorous to them."
bodies.  Hear their moans.  I will
avenge them.  Just you allow it!47 ____________________

                                   48Ivan:  (Bulgarian has two words
                                   which are equally glossed `prince'
                                   in English, the first referring to
                                   a son or other close relative of a
__________________________________ king, the other to a ruler of a
by doing so I lost another         principality.)  "mabla"
argument place.                    corresponded to a certain form of
                                   the Bulgarian demonstrative
  Nick:  Let's get that place back pronoun, which suggests contempt.
for you. There's really no reason
why "vefsfa" should not have a     49Ivan:  "I am a guard[ian] of
place for "le se venfu"):          those up there..."  It is
                                   certainly not his only job, but he
  s1 avenges s2 by doing s3        means that he is serious about
                                   defending their privacy.
  p1 punishes p2 for doing p3 by
doing p4.                            Lojbab:  Perhaps remove the
                                   "jibri", and replace by ".ei" or
  s1=p1. s3=p4. p3=tu'a s2.        ".e'i".  This also parallels what
Leaving out p3, we have:           I think the following sentence
                                   should be ...
  vefsfa: x1 punishes x2 avenging
x3 by doing x4.                    50Ivan:  Contrariwise.  "... and
                                   without a bribe I won't betray
Of course, you could just say      them."  That is, "either I will be
"venfu be lei bruna be'o sfasa"    payingly compelled (i.e. bribed)
                                   or I won't betray them".
46Lojbab: rearrange more clearly
as: "zi'e noi selcmo co zmadu le     Nick:  "gi'anaibabo" to be
la gaimast. si'erbi'e leni         polite.  I still think "le'irbai"
tepri'a"                           is sound.  "le'irselmukti"?
  "zi'e noi" could be simply
"gi'e" since you are using the       Lojbab:  I like using
same kind of relative clause (noi) attitudinals, and "le'ixlu" for
with the relativized sumti in the  bribe:  ".ije mi se le'ixlu .ei
first position in both cases.  But gi'a na.e'i lacti'a ri
there is nothing wrong with the      I somehow feel that "lacti'a"
way you have it.                   has the wrong emphasis.  Since the
                                   Devil intends to deceive the
47Ivan:  Ought to have been "Let   plebeian, he should avoid men-
me pass!", but I didn't make it    tioning deception.  Maybe a nice
clear what the Devil was supposed  ambiguous tanru like "sidju cliva
to curmi.                          ri"?

                                   di'u gi'e cadzu curmi55  .i ®lu ko
.i ®lu mi ponse no solji  .i mi    pagre li'uЇ
ponse no lo se pleji befi do  .i   "You'll continue to be able to
mi pindi je selpopseltau citno     hear."  The spirit calmed him with
.iku'i mi bredi lenu pleji lemi    this and let him walk.  "Go
kazyji'e li'uЇ                     through56."
"I have no gold.  I have nothing   
to pay you.  I am a poor and rag-  .i ko'a bikla bajra gi'e dzugre ci
covered youth.  But, I am prepared te serti tai pa nu stapa  .i ku'i
to pay with my life51."            lefo'a terkre xance ko'a lacpu
                                   He whippingly(?) ran57, and walked
.i fo'a rapli cisma                through 3 steps with one stride.
The spirit again smiles.
.i ®lu .e'onai ri zmadu lemi se    wilt still hear", I'm thinking of
cpadji  .i do'anai ko fi mi dunda  trying "do co'unai ka'e tirna".
leka do sanga'e li'uЇ
"Ah, no.  It is more than my get-  55Ivan:  Lit. "made him way", i.e.
desire(??).  Give me but your      "moved aside and let him pass".
"Oh, no, I don't want that much!   56Lojbab:  I don't know how to
..."                               pass through stairs.

.i ®lu .ueru'e leka mi sanga'e  .i   Ivan:  This may be a
.iefi'i  .i .e'i mi noroi tirna di malbaublgaria.  By passing a set
.i .e'i li'uЇ                      of steps I mean climbing them.
"What?!52  My hearing?  Take it.   They are seen as obstacles,
I'll never be free53 to hear       because one has to pay for each
anything.  Not free ..."           set of three.  Hints as to how
"My hearing?  With pleasure..."    else I could put it are welcome.

.i ®lu do ranji leka ka'e tirna54    Nora:  "pagre" isn't really the
li'uЇ  .i fo'a ko'a papri'a sepi'o right word, unless you are doing
                                   it for the analogy of "passing
                                   through" stages (in which case
____________________               something based on "pruce" might
                                   be used).  I'm not quite sure what
51Ivan:  Lit. "... to lay my       to use in place of it, though.
                                     Ivan: No, I'm doing it for want
52Ivan:  The surprise in the En-   of a better bet.
glish is too strong.
                                     Nora: Maybe "klama mo'i zo'a ci
53Ivan:  I don't get the "free"    te serti" (went motion-tangential
here.  "Let me never hear any-     3 steps)?
thing, let me..."  I don't know
how to say `let ... happen' in       Ivan: Maybe.  (Not that it
Lojban, though.                    sounds good enough to me.)

  Lojbab:  Nora was undoubtedly      Lojbab:  I think I would use
trying to interpret the ".e'i"     "bancu", and I'd soften the im-
(constraint), and did so as the    perative to reinforce that it is a
negation of ".e'inai" (freedom).   permission and not a command:  ".i
I would normally use ".e'a" for    ®lu .e'a ko cpare bancu li'uЇ"
permission, and the reiteration of
the request is even stronger, a    57Ivan:  "He rushed/dashed
petition:  ".ie fi'ido'u mi        [forward]".  Probably "ko'a co'i
noroi.e'a tirna di .i.e'o"         [mo'ica'u] bajra".

54Ivan:  For a more                  Nick:  Remember, Lojbab, the
straightforward way to say "Thou   primary raison d'etre of "bikla"

But the spirit's hairy hand pulled `Strange:  why did they so
him.                               suddenly <...>?'  And he rushed
.i ®lu banzu  .i ko sisti mu'i     
lenu tirna leiko'u58 vu cnita      .i fo'a ko'a krefu rinju
cmoni li'uЇ                        The spirit again restrained him.
"Enough.  Stop to hear their moans 
far beneath."
"Stop to hear how thy brethren
moan down there!"
.i ko'a sisti gi'e kerlo jundi
He stopped and listened.           59Ivan:  Rhetorical question.  The
                                   last sentence may become ".i ko'a
.i ®lu .uesai  .i ki'uma ko'u      di'a bajra".
suksa cfari lenu to'edri sanga
gi'e xalbo cmila li'uЇ  .i ko'a      Lojbab:  I'm not sure I
krefu ke bikla bajra               understand how this is merely a
"Well!  What made them suddenly    rhetorical question.  The
start singing happily and laughing attitudinal you inserted indicates
lightly?"  He again whippingly     surprise - thus he doesn't know
ran.                               the answer.  He probably would
                                   like to know, even if he doesn't
                                   necessarily expect an answer.
__________________________________ Thus "paunai", the unask-the-
is to denote "a whip-like motion", question marker of a rhetorical
not a whip.                        question, seems out of place.  If
                                   he asks the question, he really
  Lojbab:  I have no real problem  would like an answer.  If you feel
with the use of "bikla".  Any      that he doesn't really expect to
confusion in my mind is due to the know but just thinks of it as an
repetition of the motion with      unsolvable and possibly irrelevant
different words:  whipped forward, mystery, I would avoid the
ran, walk-passed-through, for as   question-word entirely and merely
short a motion as three steps.  I  use the attitudinal for
would use "suksa", though, and     strangeness and an observative to
perhaps phrase it like:  ".i ko'a  indicate what it is he finds so
suksa ke bajra bancu tai pa        unquestionably strange.  (This
nunstapa co cimei te serti"        comment applies to later questions
                                   in the story of this 'rhetorical'
58Ivan:  Bulgarian has fewer       type.)
personal pronouns than Lojban, so    I would have used a different
my "ko'u" corresponds to "my       attitudinal, ".i'unai.u'e"
brethren" or "thy brethren" as ap- (mystery+wonder), instead of ".ue"
propriate.                         (surprise), based on your
  What will happen if I say        translation of it as "Strange".  I
"leiko'u ni'avu cmoni"?            would not have put a strength in-
                                   dicator on the attitudinal, which
  Lojbab:  Seems as good, and      marked the attitude as particu-
indeed resolves a tanru, though it larly strong.  Otherwise, this
is one that isn't really           seems fine.
misunderstood.  The main differ-
ences between your translation and   Ivan:  It is a rhetorical
Nora's is your "how", which isn't  question inasmuch as the youth
present in the Lojban, and the     doesn't expect the Devil to answer
interpretation of "vu", which      him.  Of course he wouldn't mind
rather overstates the distance -   being told, but he's not
it is after all only 3 steps at    addressing anybody with this
this point.  How about:  "ko sisti question, just wondering aloud.
mu'i lenu tirna leika ko'u ni'ava  Your suggestion of attitudinal is
cmoni"                             good.

.i ®lu mu'i lenu do krefu pagre ci 
te serti kei mi cpadji ledo kanla  .i ko'a rapli pagre64 ci te serti
li'uЇ                              gi'e ni'a catlu jundi65  .i fo'a
"To go another 3 steps, I want     rinka lenu ko'a morji
your eyes."                        He again went through 3 steps and
                                   looked down.  The spirit reminded
.i ko'a pa'arcau sliri'a le xance  him:
He hopelessly shook (wrung?) the   
hand.                              .i ®lu ko viska leko'u lunbe ke
... desperately waved60 ...        ciblu ve flecu xadni li'uЇ
                                   "See their bare, bleeding bodies."
.i ®lu ku'i va'o la'edi'u mi na    
ka'e viska ga leimi bruna gi leimi .i ®lu .uecai  .i .u'ecai cizra
ba se vefsfa li'uЇ                 .i ?cama66 binxo lenu ko'u melbi
"But in that case I can see        dasni  .i ji'a seba'i lei ciblu te
neither my brothers nor my tar-
.i ®lu do ranji leka ka'e viska62  the Devil had use "xagmau"
.i mi fi do ba dunda lo drata      (better) instead of "zmadu"
kanla noi mutce zmadu li'uЇ        (more), while retaining a similar
"You will still be able to see.  I ellipsis of comparison while
give to you other eyes, which are  adding one regarding the nature of
much more."                        "good" (Better than what?  By
"... other, much better eyes!"63   whose standard?)

____________________               64Lojbab:  You again need to deal
                                   with the "pagre" here.  In this
60Lojbab:  For this meaning I      case, I suggest something like
would choose something like        "krefu muvdu co bancu ci te
"tcudu'u" (need-anguish), which in serti".  "krefu" is better than
turn suggests a different kind of  "rapli" for "again", though the
hand oscillating.                  latter is better for multiple
                                   repetitions, as occurs later in
61Ivan:  The Bulgarian contained   the story.
the rather long "those on whom I
go (in the literal, "la'e zo       65Ivan:  Ought to be "mo'ini'a
klama" sense) to take vengeance".  ...", or "... le cnita".

  Lojbab:  You should be able to     Lojbab:  I prefer "catlu le
capture this with "leimi se vefsfa cnita".  "mo'ini'a", like the
terkla".                           similar moving gaze early in the
                                   story, seems to ask for misunder-
62Ivan:  Again [see footnote above standing, though I suspect fluent
regarding loss of hearing], I'll   Lojbanists might appreciate the
try "do co'unai ka'e viska".       usage more than us novices.

63Ivan:  The Devil slyly fails to  66Ivan:  No answer to the question
specify in what sense they will be is really expected, so "pei ?cama
better (i.e. in what property they ko'u co'a melbi dasni".
will zmadu).
                                     Lojbab:  You mean "paunai"
  Nick: Would "zmadu befi zo'e" be instead of "pei".  I disagree, as
too obvious?                       stated in my earlier comment on
                                   these kind of rhetorical ques-
  Lojbab:  I think it would!  It   tions.  I think the unsolvability
would make the Lojbanic point, but of the question is better conveyed
if the plebeian had heard it put   by 1) dropping the ".uecai" (which
like that, he might have guessed   obviously prompted a different
what he was in for.  However, it   image in Nora's mind), and adding
would be clearer to readers, if    ".i'enaicai" after "cizra".

xrani ko'u se jadni loi se manci     At each 3rd step, the spirit
xunre rozgu67 li'uЇ                regularly took his little payment,
"Wow!  Amazing!  When did they     but the youth went on walking.  He
become beautifully dressed?  And   readily gave everything to get
instead of the bloody injuries     there and get revenge on those fat
they are adorned with wondrous red royalty.  Finally!  Not more
roses."                            than69 1 step [left].  After only
"My god!  But this is so strange:
when did they manage to dress so   __________________________________
well! ..."
                                     Nick:  To be strictly correct,
  ni'o vi ro lo cimoi te serti     yes.
fo'a di'i lebna lefo'a cmalu
selpleji .i ku'i ko'a ru'i cadzu   69Nora:  The "semaunai" isn't
.i ko'a bredi dunda rodi mu'i      necessary.  "pa te serti" actually
lemu'e klama tu gi'e vefsfa leivu  means "exactly one step".
malplana nobli joi turni  .i
.uo.ui semaunai pa te serti  .i ba   Ivan:  I wanted to emphasise the
su'epa te serti68 ko'a gapru  .i   fact that it is really only one
ko'a cabazi venfu leiko'a bruna    step.  All of these sentences
                                   ended with an exclamation mark in
                                   the Bulgarian original.  What
____________________               would be a way to put it back?

67Ivan:  Odd as it may be,           Nick:  "ba'epa", "ba'esu'epa"
Smirnenski called them "manci      will do it for me.]
xunre rozgu" `wondrously red
roses', rather than "manci ke        Lojbab:  Also, on the 'only one
xunre rozgu".  Don't ask me why.   step' sentence, add "ba'acai" to
                                   show intense anticipation,
  Lojbab:  The reason seems        certainly worth an exclamation
obvious to me, if indeed the dif-  point.
ference between the two groupings    Indeed, you can add attitudinals
is that striking in the Bulgarian: in each sentence to spice up the
The left grouping indicates a      emotional level, though without
surreal quality about the redness  strength indicators until the
of the roses, a clue to the nature final two sentences.  I suggest
of these new eyes, whereas the     "fu'ese'inai" on the "ni'o" to
right grouping just says that they show that the emotions that follow
are especially nice roses without  are empathic attributions to the
suggesting a surreal quality.      plebeian (you may wish to mark
Pretty roses are a wonder, but     this earlier in the story if you
they need no special eyes to be    are attributing attitudes
found; but roses that are a red    elsewhere in the story), "ba'u" or
color that is wondrous must indeed ".ianai" on "cmalu" to show that
be an unusual red, since most      the payments were not really
roses are a fairly distinctive red 'little', ".a'i.a'a" on the "ru'i"
color.                             before "cadzu", ".e'i.u'o" on
                                   "dunda" (or perhaps ".u'ucu'i"),
  Ivan:  Congratulations on your   ".ai" on "klama", ".o'inai" on
reading of the "wondrously red     "vefsfa", ".o'onai" on "malplana".
roses".  It is very interesting,   By now the emotions are flowing
if not accurate.  They were more   almost as fast as the words, and
likely roses of an unusual (yet    the last few sentences need only
real) red colour.  We often call   one attitudinal per sentence, but
rare things 'surreal'.             with intensity.  ".ua.a'ocai
                                   ba'upa" then on the "one step
68Ivan:  I'm not quite sure about  left" (instead of your ".uo.ui",
"ba [pa te serti]" here - steps    which seems premature), "ba'acai"
are not times.  Maybe "ba tu'a pa  on the following sentence, and
te serti".                         finally a starburst at the end of

one step he'll be above.  He will  ko fi mi dunda leka do cinmo je
then avenge his brothers.          morji71 li'uЇ
                                   "Hey, young man72.  Only 1 step.
.i ®lu mi to'erno'i ji'u leka      After only 1 step you can avenge.
cerda  .ije ro le pidrai sa'a70    But, for this step I regularly73
li'uЇ                              charge double price.  Give me your
"I am a peon by birth, and all the emotions and memory."
.i ®lu ju'i. citno nanmu su'epa te
serti  .i ba su'epa te serti do    ____________________
venfu  .i ku'i levi te serti di'i
ve pleji le relpi'i jdima mi  .i   71Ivan:  I'll probably split this
                                   into "ledo ka cinmo .e ledo ka
                                   morji".  The original had "thy
__________________________________ heart and thy memory", but the
the final sentence like            heart ("risna") is in Lojban, as
".au.ei.uo.u'a.uiri'ecai".         in many natural cultures, only a
  This may be overkill, far more   pump for blood.  I'm not sure
than you would like to do.  Or I   whether the youth implies that he
may be missing the exact feelings  will die if his heart is torn out
intended in the original, but you  of his chest (which is true with
have to admit that it puts the     respect to his natural heart), or
exclamation points back in the     that he doesn't want to live
paragraph.                         without being able to have
70Lojbab:  This word is the Lojban
editorial bracket [e.g., I'm         Lojbab:  It must be the latter,
adding this discursive note later, since he has indicated that he is
and it is not part of the original willing to die in return for
text or quote in which it is       achieving his goal.
embedded].  To get the effect you    I would replace "heart" by
want, it needs to be attached to   either "emotion-source" or
something discursive that indi-    "emotion-organ".
cates the ellipsis, since you
don't really want to delete the    72Ivan:  The "hey" sounds somewhat
"pidrai" that it currently marks.  rude to me.
I would make it vausa'ake'unai,
which ends the sentence with any     Lojbab:  We have generally found
appropriate ellipsis supplied (the that putting in the "doi" tends to
formal meaning of "vau"),          soften the harshness of the
indicates that the "vau" isn't     vocative, making for a more polite
really said, and then indicates    phrase like "Attend my words, O
continuation (which is covered by  young man".  Another possible
the "sa'a" since it is attached to vocative to consider is "ta'adoi",
it in the manner of indicators).   especially since the Devil is
  Actually, "mi'unai" might make a interrupting the reverie of the
better word for open-ended         preceding sentence.
ellipsis, though it isn't
currently in the word list, since  73Nora:  "di'i" is "regularly" as
I think we have a difference       in how a clock ticks, that is "at
discursive intent for "ke'unai":   regular intervals".  I think
to indicate at the start of a      "na'o" ("typically") might work
block of text that you are         better.
continuing a thread after
repeating something for emphasis.    Ivan:  Yes, well, it is not
  Other choices for open-ended     "typically" either, because he
ellipsis might be                  does it every single time when
".isa'a.isa'a.isa'a" or            someone gets to this step.
".itu'esa'atu'u" (which would
become legal under a recently        Lojbab:  Then maybe "roroi" to
proposed grammar change).          so quantify the situation.

"Young man, only one step more!    
..."                               .i ®lu ku'i mi ba traji leni to'e
                                   gleki  .i do lebna ro ckaji be le
.i ko'a sliri'a le xance           kazre'a mi li'uЇ
He shakes (wrings?) the hand.      "But I will be a most unhappy
                                   person.  You take all humanity
.i ®lu .ii leka cinmo  .i          from me."
.e'anaicai  .i dukse kusru li'uЇ   But I shall be the most unhappy
"Oh, no!  Emotion - heaven         one.  Thou takest from me
forfend.  Too cruel."              everything that is human76.
"The heart?  No!  This is too      
cruel!"                            .i ®lu to'e go'e  .i traji leni
                                   je'a gleki  .i .e'apei  .i ?xu do
.i fo'a maljgira cmila ra'i le     tugni  .i do'anai77 leka do cinmo
galxe                              je morji li'uЇ
The spirit haughtily laughs from
the throat.                        ____________________
The Devil gave a guttural,
authoritative laugh:               76Lojbab:  This sounds more like
                                   "do lebna ro selkai be loi remna
.i ®lu mi na mela'edi'u kusru  .i  mi
mi fi do canja dunda lo zabna
kazyci'o .e lo cnino kazmo'i  .i   77Ivan:  "On the contrary - the
ga do zanru gi do noroi pagre levi most happy one!...  But - ?  Dost
te serti gi'e noroi venfu leido    thou agree:  only thy heart and
bruna pe lo se flira be le simsa   thy memory?"  I have no idea what
be le canre zi'e pe le se cmoni be "do'a" means; I used "do'anai" for
le zmadu be le la gaimast.         `only' here.  (I didn't intend it
si'erbi'e bei leni tepri'a li'uЇ   to be interpreted as "please".)
I am not thus cruel.  I trade with The "je'a" is for symmetry (to
you for a fine emotion and a new   replace the "to'e").
memory74.  Either you approve75 or
you'll never get through this step   Nick:  "do'a" - "generously";
and never avenge your brothers     "do'anai" - "parsimoniously". I
with the sandy faces and the moans think here "do'anai" would here
more fearful than the December     mean "I'm not asking for too
blizzard."                         much", but generosity is
                                   associated with giving, isn't it?
.i ko'a catlu lefo'a crino je      But I can find no better UI.
ranxi kanla
He looks at the spirit's ironic      Lojbab:  We better clarify this
green eyes.                        one well.  It came across entirely
                                   backwards.  Intended to be
____________________               discursive rather than emotive,
                                   "do'a" is supposed to mean that
74Ivan:  Or "I will give thee      you are generously conceding or
instead..."  The original had      allowing a dubious point "even if
literally "lo solji risna".        this were so", possibly in con-
                                   junction with "da'i".  "do'anai"
75Ivan:  That is, "If thou         therefore means that you are re-
consentest not, thou shalt         fusing to give in even a little,
never..."                          which is probably why Nora trans-
                                   lated it as an officious and
  Lojbab:  This sounds like        insistent 'please' (rather than a
"tugni" or "curmi", or maybe       polite request).
something else, instead of           I presume that the word can be
"zanru".  This literally           used emotively, though I hadn't
translates to something like       thought of it that way.
"ganai do na curmi", a double        We addressed the question of how
negative equivalent of what you    to express "only" on the net at
chose.                             great length, a discussion that I

"Just the opposite - the most        ni'o ca lenu le xekri kerfa ca
truly happy man.  Allow me.  Do    biflu'a kei ko'a simsa be le crisa
you agree? Your emotion and        lidbi'e ku fengu pagre le romoi te
memory, please?"                   serti  .i ko'a capu snada lemu'e
                                   gapru  .i suksa cisma gusni leko'a
.i ko'a cu trati pensi  .i lo      flira81  .i leko'a kanla cu dirce
xekri ctino cu manri'a leko'a      seci'o le smaji ka se mansa  .i
flira .i loi xasne ke to'ekli      leko'a xance cu luzbi'o  .i ko'a
dirgo cu gunro zo'a78 le se cinje  catlu lei pixsalci nobli  .i catlu
mebri  .i ko'a fengu demri'a le    le cnita be di'o lenu krixa je
xance gi'e bacru pa'o le denci     dapma fa le grusi je selpopseltau
He tries79 to think.  A black      girzu  .i catlu  .i ku'i no sluji
shadow covers his face.  Cloudy    be leko'a flira cu frati  .i ri
drops of sweat roll off the        selgu'i je gleki je selpu'a  .i
wrinkled brow.  He angrily         ko'a viska loi salci se taxfu
clenched80 his fist and said       girzu vi le cnita  .i lei pu cmoni
through his teeth:                 ca salpemci
                                     With his black hair fluttering,
®lu .ai.e'asai  .i ko lebna li'uЇ  he, like a summer thunderstorm,
"Go ahead.  Take [them]."          angrily passes through the last
"So be it!  (Let it be!  Soit!     step.  He has now succeeded in
etc.)  Take them!"                 getting above82.  There is a

__________________________________ ____________________
couldn't fit into JL17.  Unless
you are intending that "only" mean 81Ivan:  "And suddenly a smile
that the Devil is trying to        shone on his face."
express that he is being generous
to require as little as the heart    Lojbab:  I don't think a smile
and memory (which would be a       can illuminate someone's face in
knowingly false emotive expres-    Lojban in any literal sense of the
sion, something I don't much like  relation.
in the Lojban attitudinal system -
though I guess, if anyone can lie    Ivan:  The original uses an
about emotions, the Devil can),    intransitive verb which usually
you need one of the more elaborate refers to the sun coming out from
logical paraphrases of "only" like behind a cloud, something like
"... and nothing else"             `[and suddenly] a smile "co'a"
                                   [shine; be a source of light] on
78Ivan:  "Turbid <...> rolled      his face'.  Clearly Smirnenski
along his wrinkled forehead."      didn't want to just say `he
                                   smiled', but as his alternative
  Lojbab:  I think you wanted      wording doesn't affect the
"mo'ire'o" instead of "zo'a".      meaning, I'm not sure how to
                                   account for it.  I am open for
79Ivan:  No!  "He became           suggestions.
thoughtful /fell to thinking."
                                     Lojbab:  How about something
  Lojbab:  Nora got caught here by like "suksa cisma co ka leko'a
the faulty memory that afflicts    flira  cu panra le solgu'i poi
those of us who are long time      ba'o dilzu'i ku leka co'a
Loglanists - "trati" means "taut"  to'ercanci"?  (This uses the
in Lojban, in older TLI Loglan     proposed grammar revision for
meant what "troci" now means       relative clauses; the baseline
("try").  A rare case where she    grammar requires "ku'o" where "ku"
didn't actually look the word and  is.)
place structure up, I guess.
                                   82Ivan:  Ought to be "He was
80Nora:  This is when I finally    already on the top".  I reckon
figured this metaphor out; I think I've been having trouble saying
the "angrily" helped.              `already'.

sudden smile illuminating his      
face.  His eyes radiate, emoting   .i ®lu do ?mo li'uЇ tcica preti fi
the silent satisfaction.83  His    fo'a sepi'o lo rufsu voksa
hands loosen84.  He looks at the   "What are you?" slyly asks Evil-
toasting nobility85.  Looking un-  Spirit with a rough voice.
derneath to the crying and the     "Who art thou?" slyly and hoarsely
cursing of the gray, ragged crowd. asked the Devil.
Looking, but not a muscle in his   
face reacts.  It is illuminated    .i ®lu mi nobli ji'u leka cerda
and happy and pleased.  He sees a  .ije lei cevni mi bruna  .i .uicai
crowd dressed for celebration be-  ge le terdi cu je'a melbi gi le
low86.  What were moans are        remna cu je'a gleki88 li'uЇ
paeans87.                          "I am a noble89 by birth, and the
                                   gods are my brothers.  Ah!, but
                                   the earth is truly beautiful and
__________________________________ the people are truly happy."
  Lojbab:  I can see two           tu'u
interpretations of "already" given The End.
only the English word, so don't    
feel bad.  Given that his memory   .i di'u se finti la xristoz.
has changed in the way it has, he  smirnensk.90 gi'e se fanva la
may not remember the climbing, and .iVAN. derJANSK. fo le banblgaria
thus is already at the top (This   si'u la nitcion. nikolas.
might be "ba'anai cpana le         This was written by Christo
gapru").  Or, in the sense that    Smirnensk, and translated by Ivan
you suggest with "snada", he is in from Bulgarian aided by Nick
the aftermath of climbing the last Nicholas.
step ("ba'o cpare fi le gapru").   
83Ivan:  He enjoys his belief that THE END
he is a prince by birth, and has
always been one.

84Ivan:  His fists, actually.  But
it is the same thing.

85Ivan:  "He looked at the
feasting/banquetting princes."

86Ivan:  `crowds' wearing holiday
garments, such as are worn only on
special days (e.g. Sundays).       __________________________________
                                   their current status at "ca" -
87Ivan:  Literally. "the moans     they may still be moans.
were already hymns".  The "pu" is
my addition.                       88Ivan:  Exclamation.  "Oh, how
                                   beautiful is the earth and how
  Lojbab:  Shades of our classic   happy are the people!"  Again, the
example of "le":  "le nanmu cu     "je'a" is for symmetry, in the
ninmu".  Of course they are still  place of what was "to'e" but a
moans, but he doesn't know that.   while ago.  In the original
Maybe a "pe'i" to make this clear. ".oicai" and ".uicai" were the
  Thus you might want "rolo"       same interjection.
instead of "le", to clarify which
reality the author prefers to      89Ivan:  Lit. "a prince".
  Remember that Lojban's simple    90Ivan:  The author's pen name is
tenses are aorist; i.e. saying     Smirnenski (I lojbanised it by
that they were moans in the past   cutting off the "-i", which only
with "pu" makes no claim about     indicates that he's a man).