Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hasta La Vista: Great Man Hits Trillion-to-One Jackpot

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's people are apparently saying it's a coincidence and that "soap" and "poet" have also appeared as first letter spelling happenstance in the great man's missives. Though not so many Scrabble 4-letters in those. Here's Staunch USA on an alleged fruity response to a "kiss my gay ass" (you liar) greeting at a Democratic Party fundraiser. Click to enlarge LOL's composite.

Has anyone checked Gordon's letter to Nadine Dorries for hidden meaning, or meanies?

Arnie was lucky. The BNP might have sent out the throat ripping Rottweillers to greet an unwanted alien guest.

LOL have now conducted a scientific study on a random selection of Governor Schwarzenegger's letters. It's true. There are lots of initial letter hidden words to be had. Feast your eyes on a sample of our findings:



OMG! How very clever! And how very rude!

How can the Mirror dub Arnie (below, enjoying his work) the Swearminator and suggest this was anything other than a very long shot coming home big?

A STATISTICIAN WRITES: "The Governor of California is a remarkably lucky man to draw this unusual combination of rare consonants and vowels.

"To be frank "poem" and "soap" are only just long shots, as the Governor writes many many thousands of letters.

"He had 700 bills to sign, or not, in 48 hours recently.

"But Scrabblearama! We estimate odds of a trillion to one against this particular feat recurring." Via @Bloggerheads.


Mark Thompson said...

I calculate it to be 200 billion to one. How do you get to a trillion?

Chris Paul said...

Repeated from your comments Mark:

You asked here how I got to a trillion to one? Well it is as Dr Jansons says a matter of frequency of initial letters in words within the working vocabulary of the Swearminator. Words starting in all the letters apart from U and K are reasonably numerous, though in a couple of misives whose initial letters I quote in my post I got 4 As, 4 Os, 2 Is, 2 Ys and an E in the vowels. And an assortment of consonants including 4 Cs and 1 F.

With not even the slightest instance of any sensible hidden words. Oh, ha, yo, id, oid (which may appeal to Dr Jansons), ac, ba and ad being your lot as far as I can see.

A factor of just 5 is I suspect a rather low one to allow for frequency of *initial* letters within the Swearminator's vocabulary. So the good doctor may be wrong strictly speaking re order of magnitude.

I'd also stick another potential weighting factor in the mix; that is that long words may be more likely to appear at the start of lines than short ones.

And an observation also. The swearminators other letters in the public domain - there are loads, he/the post holder is prolific - show a significant resistance to "widows and orphans" - i.e. the odd single words that often arise when paras are allowed to break as they naturally do on a particular measure.

In other words someone on the staff is either casting off carefully and tweaking point size to avoid, or redrafting to avoid these - I often do the latter myself on my blog for my preferred browser. A little anal actually. I publish a post, look at it, go back and try to get rid of widows and orphans. Comes from being an ex sub and typographer.

That active process militates against FU moments.