Amoeblog

(In which Job is sooo condescending.)

Posted by Job O Brother, May 18, 2007 12:50am | Post a Comment
Okay.

I’m looking around my room for gems of pop culture (or, as is more often in my case, unpopular culture) that I can gab about.

A good starting point is whatever’s playing on my iPod. Right now, that’s “La Transfiguration de Notre Seigneur Jésus-Christ”, a piece by the composer, Olivier Messiaen.

(*Chuckle*)

Um… That’s Olivier Messiaen.

Hee! You did it again! The way you’re pronouncing it in your brain is – you must forgive me – hilarious. It’s that cluster-f**k of vowels at the end.

Now, before you get all huffy and pronounce a few crueler things in your brain at me, you should know that I too once pronounced Olivier Messiaen the same way you… titter!… you just did.

But now I know better, and I’m going to pass this knowledge on to you. For free!

The first name is easy. It’s the Freedom version… I mean, the French version, of the name Oliver. Oh-LIVE-ee-ay. Like that one actor who won a lot of awards and inspired everyone with his performances and drank to numb the pain of his crushing depression and repressed homosexual desires.

No, silly – not Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise doesn’t inspire anyone. Pay attention!


Beloved actor and all-around doomed soul, Lawrence Olivier

The surname is the challenge, and requires making a couple sounds that don’t appear in the English language. I’ll break it down, syllable by syllable:

Messiaen: Mee-seh-YA-choo.

I know, I know. It doesn’t look like it’s pronounced that way, but it is French after all. We’re talking about a people who can’t be bothered to pronounce half their words most of the time.