Glyph of the word 'ipu'.


  • (n.) slug

Oku! Hava ei i ipu okuoku!
“No! I would never eat a slug!”

Notes: Snail shells are about the only thing cool about a snail, which makes slugs the antithesis of…of something. Blech!

Today’s iku always reminds me of yesterday’s. The two look rather similar. As far back as you go they’re pretty similar, in fact (both being built off similar iku and combining with the same iku in the same way). I think both iku are kind of ugly. What can you do, though? They can’t all be birds of paradise.

Not that have anything against slugs, specifically. In fact the club we resurrected at Berkeley was called SLUG. It stood for the Society of Linguistics Undergraduates. And we even put together a symposium. That’s where I did my first ever presentation on conlanging. Know what I used? Overheads. Actual overheads. And they were awesome. In fact, that’s one of my wife and I’s oldest stories. She was the time keeper, and I’d mentioned that I was going last during our symposium so I could take up as much time as I wanted. She had signs that told us how much time we had left, and after I got the STOP sign (and I was still going), she pulled up some other signs she made just for me (signs that said things like “STOP! STOP! STOP!” and “PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD STOP!”). I was so amused, that I got distracted, and pretty soon we were all waiting to see how many signs she had and what they said. Good times…

You know, we had a mascot too that I drew. It was a slug with a Superman cape that was attached via a gold chain that was fastened by a great big schwa that dangled over his chest (or thorax [or bodily mass…?]). In fact, can we get a shot of that guy? Let’s see… Ah! Here he is:

The SLUG mascot circa 2003.

Not the best drawing, but you can see his cape, his schwa, and his sardonic expression. I fear the Society of Linguistics Undergraduates is no more, but it had died before and been resurrected. Should the need ever arise, the Mighty SLUG will rise again from the ashes, like a fiery…slug. So be not sad! His schwa will live on forever.

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5 Responses to “Ipu”

  1. Ka kavaka Christophe ti:

    Overheads! I remember those! I actually used them until about 6 years ago, when I was brought kicking and screaming into the world of Powerpoint presentations and USB sticks!

    Loved the story (where you already dating her at the time?).

    BTW, my very first conlang presentation was also done with overheads! It must have been something like 13 years ago. Our English teacher wanted us to make a presentation in English (arguing, rightly, that most of us French engineers would probably work overseas at least some time in our lives, so we’d better get used to making presentations in English already), and we were free to use whatever subject we wanted. So naturally I chose conlanging! I remember my presentation was met mostly with polite disinterest… :/

    I still have those slides somewhere. I need to have a look at them, just to see how bad I was then :P . AFAIK I made those slides using LaTeX! Those were the days…

  2. Ka kavaka Muke Tever ti:

    Ha! Your slug reminded me of Schwa Man, a superhero I came up with way back when I was in high school.

    Gosh, I was young then.

  3. Ka kavaka David J. Peterson ti:

    @Christophe: You should scan those in and try to put them up on the web somewhere!

    @Muke: Any pictures of Schwa Man? :D

  4. Ka kavaka Muke Tever ti:

    @David There were one or two maybe – but this was before I learned to draw so I doubt they were more than stick figures. I don’t think any have survived.

  5. Ka kavaka Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets ti:

    @David I need to find them first. They must be somewhere in the mountain of stuff I have around here :) .

    @Muke When I was at the University, working for the student’s newspaper, I came up with Ygrekk, a Y-shaped superhero :) . Never managed to do much with him though :( .

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