2003-05-23 - 8:51 a.m.
A primary fact of my existence is that I, like my father, am a geek. I am insatiably curious, and I cannot let a question that grabs me go unanswered. Because of this, I have a reputation among friends, family and co-workers for being a resource for everything from how to manipulate software to how to change a flat tire. Random information? Go see Kaetchen. And they do. Yesterday a co-worker wanted a sauce recipe for filet mignon; ten minutes later, she wanted to know how to complete a cost-benefit analysis for a software purchase. An overrated font of pointless and unrelated knowledge, that's me.
There's a downside (yes, one in addition to it making me terrifying to most men). At times I can be living life normally, rolling through a work day or cleaning house, when suddenly I'll come across a word or a question that absolutely must be explored. And I must drop what I'm doing, find a dictionary, call someone, just get an effing answer before I can continue with dailiness.
I bring this up because while trolling for writing prompts the other day, I found this:
"Why isn't 11 pronounced onety one?"
And damnit, I've been thinking about the answer ever since. I've done some reading into Romance languages versus Germanic languages (I have background in this anyway), I've asked some native Spanish speakers, and I've been thinking of calling up an old linguist boyfriend and digging through his brain. He wouldn't be surprised; he's familiar with my obsessiveness.
Now, I could talk here about our Arabic-derived numeric system, or I could discuss how Japanese uses different adjectival nouns to count differently shaped items, or I could mention the distinctions in decimal-based conversions between Romance and Germanic languages.
But if there's one thing I've learned in making the transition to full-fledged geek, it's that I'm the only freak out there who's interested in the answer.
Yep, I'll be single a long, long time.
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former / latter