Wednesday, July 13, 2011

This is Language Log

The folks at Language Log use an amusing phrasal template in some of their posts:
This is Language Log, not X Log.

where X is a seemingly unrelated and often obscure topic.

This is usually employed when, after briefly discussing X, they introduce a linguistic angle. It is used often enough to be familiar to regular readers, but not so often as to be annoying.

As far as I can tell, it was coined by Mark Liberman way back in July 2005, with the innocuous This is Language Log, not Cycling Log. But then Geoff Pullum took the ball and ran with it as only he can.

Here are some examples.

This is not an exhaustive list; just a few of my favourites. But this is The World According to Sroyon, not the Let’s All Obsess Over Language Log Blog.


Anjana Talapatra said...

What a treasure is that website! I've spent the last 2 hours quite 'imbibing' it!

Tommy said...

It reminds me of Star Trek, where McCoy would say "I'm a doctor, not a(n) X."

Sroyon said...

@Anjana: It is indeed. :)

@Tommy: Thanks, I like that! I see great potential for "I'm a lawyer, not a(n) X."