05
Mar
10

amphibology


A friend suggested the book “Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation” to me. For the uninitiated, the title of the book is an amphibology, a verbal fallacy arising from an ambiguous grammatical construction. Had heard the term for the first time and decided to Google it. The title is derived from a joke on bad punctuation:

A panda walks into a café. He orders a sandwich, eats it, then draws a gun and proceeds to fire it at the other patrons.

‘Why?’ asks the confused, surviving waiter amidst the carnage, as the panda makes towards the exit. The panda produces a badly punctuated wildlife manual and tosses it over his shoulder.

‘Well, I’m a panda’, he says, at the door. ‘Look it up.’

The waiter turns to the relevant entry in the manual and, sure enough, finds an explanation. ‘Panda. Large black-and-white bear-like mammal, native to China. Eats, shoots and leaves.’

More examples of amphibology:

  • Used cars for sale: Why go elsewhere to be cheated? Come here first!
  • King Harold walked and talked, ten minutes after he was dead.
  • Medical services here. You won’t get better.
  • Wanted: chair for a person with a wooden leg.
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So what’s this blog about?

Another attempt? Well yes. Attempting to figure out another sustainable model (there are some other attempts going on parallel-ly). Well, we have a lot of questions in mind. we read up stuff, we do some research to find answers to these questions. This is an attempt to publish that little 15-20 minute research.

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