It’s time for a serious rant.
Not about anything “see-ree-us” but about something nearby all the time.
This item is impossible to run from, for it’s always within arm’s length.
Yes, there’s a major problem in our nation and it has nothing to do with war, spying, drugs, budgets, or greed, lust, lies, power, or pollution.
No, none of those. It’s about our alphabet.
Some years ago I realized that a good operating system improves our ability to work. Those who used linux or apple rapidly got up to speed and stayed that way. Good work, people!
Those who went the way of windows spent far more time learning how to use it and also had more problems. In the long run, both groups are about equal. But why make life harder than it has to be?
The alphabet is an operating system for our brain. We think in it, talk in it, and write down all our important thoughts.
It takes years for kids to learn it. And even as adults, many still don’t get the idea of spelling. My favorites are many, but some are: thorough, philosophy, and agile. What are some of yours?
The list is almost endless. So many funny words, not spelled the way they sound. No, they get spelled the way someone else did it by mistake years earlier.
Need proof? Look at any old writing that is 200 years old. See how differently the words are spelt. Grammar nightmare for young and old alike.
Where should I start improving the alphabet? I’m going to begin at the beginning, to make this short.
Sure, I have issues with the idea of “Q” always being followed by a “U” – how useless is that? Or the fun we have with “G” being hard and soft. Is there a word where both “G” sounds appear?
No, I’m going to ignore those fun problems and start at the top with the biggest offender of them all, letter number three, the “see.”
What are it’s offenses? Let me sum the ways. First, students of English never know if it’s sounds like an “ess” or a “kay.”
In Latin they only used it for the “K” sound. So the Roman Emperor Julius? He was a Kaiser, like a King. He was not a “see-zur” like the salad!
Then at times our perpetrator teams up with unknowing partners. Paired with the “H” or the more popular “S” our perp alters the entire sound, leaving hate and mayhem in its wake.
No, Fair Reader, the time is now for removing the old letter from our operating system and re-purposing it as an entirely new sound.
Perhaps it’s willing to take up the mantle of “TH” so we don’t have to merge those two letters in order to make one sound.
Or maybe, finally, we fulfill its destiny and free the poor partner “H.” In this way a popular point of worship would be spelled “see-you-are-see.” In a way, spelling it like this seems very zen-like.
There’s my rant. Time to reinvent our alphabet and promote the third letter to a new position. Are you with me?
PS. I’d love to hear some of the alphabet problems you’ve seen. “See” you later!