salchow » sowchow

Classification: English – cross-language – vocalized /l/

Spotted in the wild:

  • I’m doing a tripel Sowchow, toe and loop. (link)
  • There are different types of jumps in figure skating a edge jump and pick jump a pick jump is a toe loop, flip and lutze, some edge jumps are waltz jump axel sowchow and loop. (link)

This is a rarer variant of the _salchow » sowcow_ eggcorn. See that entry for further remarks.

| Comments Off link | entered by Chris Waigl, 2005/04/01 |

salchow » sowcow

Classification: English – cross-language – vocalized /l/

Spotted in the wild:

  • Another big moment the same year was “the first time I did a double sowcow: […”] (link)
  • I really love watching brian skate and it was a honor to skate with him at stars on ice with the minnesota special olympics thanks for all his help with my double sowcow. (link)
  • The G-rated skating flick, starring Michelle Trachtenberg, Hayden Panettiere as rink rivals and (Joan Cusack and Kim Cattrall as their moms, couldn’t land the sowcow. Targeted at tweens on spring break, Ice Princess averaged a frosty $2,804 at 2,501 theaters. (Yahoo! Movie reviews)
  • Because they knew the competition would be tough that year, they decided to attempt the “triple-lutz-sowcow-off-the-dishwasher-nothing-but-net” move (as seen in “the cutting edge”). (link)

Analyzed or reported by:

  • desperate hours productions blog (link)

The _salchow_, sometimes referred to as _Salchow jump_ is a figure skating jump named after the Swedish figure skater Ulrich Salchow (1877-1949). Occasionally, we find the rarer form _sowchow_.

Names for athletic moves and maneuvers don’t really have to make much sense. Eggcorn users may be satisfied to suppose that the term is an obscure or jocular allusion to sows and cows.

The error can occur in other languages than English — a pan-linguistic eggcorn? This is from a young figure skater writing in French, who, however, is unsure of the spelling:

> Je suis un garçon et je fais du patin depuis 3 ans. Je fait le sowchow (je pense que ça s’écrit comme ça), le saut de valse, saut de lapin, cherry flip. Je suis rendu à l’étape 4 et j’ai eu ma première médaille d’or il y a moins de 3 semaines, à Longueuil. C’était ma 2ème compétition.

| Comments Off link | entered by Chris Waigl, 2005/04/01 |

poise » pose

Chiefly in:   posed to (do something)

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • Faculty from many departments are advancing development of smart sensors, which are posed to make a major impact on the automotive, aerospace, and medical fields among others. (Wayne State University College of Engineering Profile)
  • We have been in a evolutionary phase for the last couple of years as designs have converged, but we are posed to cross the threshold where a complete system and/or multiple processors fit on a single chip. (NSF Workshop on New Challenges and Directions for Systems Research)
  • He is credited with starting the Algerian Civil War after he nullified the 1991 elections in which the Islamic Salvation Front (Front Islamique de Salut [FIS]) was posed to win. (Military Review, Mar/Apr 2003)
  • Now we are posed to fight that war again and perhaps again and again, this time culturally, where the threat is fundamentalism, wherever it raises its intolerant head. (Yale Bulletin & Calendar, June 4, 2004)
  • Transgender Woman Posed To Win Primary (URNotAlone, Aug 20, 2004)
  • The Braves lost J.D. Drew and signed Raul Mondesi(!), and appear posed to open the season with both Mondesi and Brian Jordan in the starting outfield. (Salon, Mar 31, 2005)
| 3 comments | link | entered by Ben Zimmer, 2005/03/31 |

scapegoat » escape goat

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • This replacement was an escape goat for a vindictive coward. (The Writer's Association)
  • In the eyes of most Somalis, these Warlords are using Ethiopia as an escape goat to achieve their political agenda… (Somali News, Google cache)
  • However after the way i’ve been treated by people lately i have no reason to pass it on to autographmania, and the fact the people are still having to hide behind closed doors and then using me as an escape goat is starting to really get on my nerves. (TimeWarp Rocky Horror Forums)

Like many other eggcorns, _escape goat_ is often used in puns, for example by the record label of this name.

Note by Ben Zimmer, Nov. 15, 2010: As explained by Merrill Perlman in “Passing the Blame” (CJR Language Corner, 11/15/10), the change of scapegoat to escape goat simply brings it into line with its etymological origins:

The concept of the “scapegoat” is in the Bible, in Leviticus, as part of the ritual of atonement. The word “scape-goat” itself, though, did not appear until 1530, according to The Oxford English Dictionary: “In the Mosaic ritual of the Day of Atonement (Lev. xvi), that one of two goats that was chosen by lot to be sent alive into the wilderness, the sins of the people having been symbolically laid upon it, while the other was appointed to be sacrificed.” That first goat escaped death, though it was loaded with sin. Since “scape” was merely a spelling variation of “escape,” it was, literally, an “escape goat.” Maybe “escaped goat” would be more grammatically correct, but no matter.

See also scapegoat » scrapegoat.

| 4 comments | link | entered by Tom Phillips, 2005/03/31 |

fount » font

Chiefly in:   font of knowledge , font of wisdom

Classification: English – nearly mainstream

Spotted in the wild:

  • “She was a font of wisdom and good sense.” (American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.)

The noun “knowledge” in the heading stands in for a variety of abstract nouns.

Treated at some length in my Language Log piece of 28 March 2005, “Chomping at the Font”. The noun “font”, as in “baptismal font” and “type font” and as a variant of poetic and metaphorical “fount” ’source, repository’, has been steadily gaining on metaphorical “fount”; this is a replacement of a less frequent and more specialized word by a more frequent phonologically similar word that makes sense in the context.

| 2 comments | link | entered by Arnold Zwicky, 2005/03/29 |