Friday, January 8, 2016


I've seen The Force Awakens three times now. Thrice. Can you say nerd alert?

Anyway, as I'm sure you've seen or heard, it's good. It is nearly as good as The Empire Strikes Back (TESB). Though TESB is a perennial fanboy's favorite in part due to Frank Oz's Yoda, it was also the first Star Wars film to introduced puppets. This was bad because the puppets gave Lucas a green light to bring on the Ewoks (n'yub n'yub) in Return of the Jedi. Boo! But the Ewoks were nothing compared to what came next: CGI Jar Jar Binks. Ugh.

Too much of a good thing is not a good thing.

But then again, if we didn't have Jar Jar, then we wouldn't have this lovely Robot Chicken short:

So back to my main point. In TESB, Yoda challenged Luke to unlearn what he had previously learned. I like that. I've used that line several time when attempting to change something faulty in the way I think. Executing this successfully often proves to be more difficult than it seems. Even the simplest thing can be difficult to unlearn.

Take the Alphabet Song. Like most Americans, you probably learned the letters to the alphabet by singing it to that jolly old tune:
♬ A-B-C-D-E-F-G
Q-R-S, T-U-V. 
W-X, Y and Z. 
Now you know your ABCs 
Next time won't you sing with me 

This is a marvelous mnemonic. It has a simple melody and rhythm that incorporates the letters into rhymes to reinforce memorization.

Well, the alphabet song is done differently in Singapore. They use the same tune. That's not the problem. The issue is that they messed with the rhythm and have completely disrupted the rhyming letters. And there's also the problem with how they pronounce the letter "Z". Because Singaporeans got their English from the Brits, they call the final letter "Zed". Zed? Now how is Zed going to rhyme with anything in the alphabet song? (it can't)

So here's how Singaporeans sing their alphabet.
A-B-C-D-E-F-G   /* so far so good */
H-I-J-K-L-M-N       /* um what? */
O-P-Q-R-S-T-U      /* off the rails now */
V-W-X-Y- ZED     /* ew! that's just wrong! */

I'll tell you what. That's poppycock. That's what that is. Pure poppycock; a total hack job that has butchered the rhythm and rhymes.

There are some things worth unlearning. The alphabet song is not one of them.

I think Yoda would approve of this message.

Happy Friday. Thanks for reading.

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