Spelling corrections

Discussion of the confirmed Zodiac letters

Re: Spelling corrections

Postby entropy » Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:08 am

I'll put it on my Christmas list then. ;) I was really just asking if the overall conclusion was that Z's spelling errors were intentional or not but I'd definitely be interested in reading the analysis.

Mike's point about the semi-colons is well-taken and I agree that Z's grammar is actually pretty good. I'm also not really making a judgment on his level of intelligence or even education. There are a lot of bright people who are spelling challenged. A lot of folks will point out difficult words that he does spell correctly but these are often words, IMO, in which there is little phonetic ambiguity, i.e. there aren't a lot of choices to be made about spelling rules. Most of his mistakes are phonetically understandable. Consider words like "pencel", "victom" or "epasode". These are spelled exactly as they sound so I would suggest that there are only a handful of really egregious spelling errors in the entire catalogue of letters. I respect that most people disagree and there are good arguments to be made on both sides.
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby traveller1st » Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:51 am

I almost at times wonder if he wasn't just having 'some fun'.

I find it interesting that the words we see presented here as 'not normal' are words that can be played with phonetically. It's subtle but it's not, but it is because consider the word 'not' he didn't play with that but he could have - ie knot. I like this thread because I'm not sure what these things tell us. For now I get the 'feeling' he was playing (there's that word again Dave lol) - sorry, private joke.

We seem at times bound by patterns in our lives so it's natural, and probably the reason why we look for them. What can those patterns or perceived patterns tell us in this instance? I know that is just basically repeating, in a different way, the questions that Entropy is asking in starting this thread but once I get typing and I think it sounds smart I can't help myself lol. Soz.

Mostly I have to chase my thoughts, it's like a video game up there. I envy those with ordered thinking lol.
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby morf13 » Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:37 am

Dont forget, there are letters in which Z misspells a word,and later on in the same letter, spells it correctly
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby entropy » Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:58 am

I honestly had no opinion about the spelling mistakes when I first looked at them and my opinions go against the limited writing I've seen from my own person of interest. What surprised me in looking at the full list of errors was that the vast majority of mistakes fell into just a few categories of common mistakes like the confusion about when to use double letters. He seems to guess about these rules and sometimes figure it out once a word is written because it looks right or wrong on paper.

The alternative would seem to be that Z managed to carefully feign confusion over specific spelling rules and misuse them consistently through some fifteen or more letters over several years. That seems unlikely to me but again... just my opinion. I do think there's a good discussion to be had with the mistakes. I'll post a full letter by letter list eventually.
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby mike_r » Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:17 pm

Hi-

If the Badlands letter is legit, what do you think then? I've always viewed this letter with its five syllable words to be a "f%^k you" that Z wrote to his pursuers, to show them he was not some illiterate. However, my mind was poisoned by Alan Keel, who said there is a 1974 forgery I've yet to track down. So you may have to hope that this is the one!

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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby traveller1st » Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:21 pm

mike_r wrote:Hi-

If the Badlands letter is legit, what do you think then? I've always viewed this letter with its five syllable words to be a "f%^k you" that Z wrote to his pursuers, to show them he was not some illiterate. However, my mind was poisoned by Alan Keel, who said there is a 1974 forgery I've yet to track down. So you may have to hope that this is the one!

Mike


I have to say, from my own perspectives, that the badlands letter/postcard has been pivotal. It sometimes frustrated me but in the end it proved to be a major focus to work out from. I believe it's from Zodiac and from my own perspective again, I think it found itself in the place it now inhabits because it fills in gaps, in style. This is just my working experience with it. Not only do I feel that in itself it contains many correct hallmarks but it also contains hallmarks from the other Zodiac missives even back to the desk poem.

Some of the letters we look at are tricky. God knows, I change my mind every five minutes on some of them but that's a good thing, I would be more worried if we just accepted everything at face value.

Eventually though we will have to move on and make the terrifying decision as to what letters are real. That has always been a motivation for myself. My little way of helping I guess, to assist in that decision.

That makes it all seem so cut 'n dried but it isn't. I have to get my hands dirty and be exposed to the same doubts we all have. The one thing that does strike me though is WHY is it so tricky? I personally think this is because of how Zodiac operated. I believe he deliberately worked in the field of confusion and used this technique on many levels. So in that respect and regarding this thread I think we have to factor that in as a very real possibility for explaining the so termed spelling mistakes.

Then we have the other side of the coin. What if they are separate to his subterfuge? What if they are an inherent trait? We aren't sure though and does that bring us back to deliberate confusion? Is he being slippy or are we being slippy in our own thinking on his behalf?

Answers on a postcard with double postage please. lol :?
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby smithy » Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:26 pm

mike_r wrote:Hi-

If the Badlands letter is legit, what do you think then? I've always viewed this letter with its five syllable words to be a "f%^k you" that Z wrote to his pursuers, to show them he was not some illiterate. However, my mind was poisoned by Alan Keel, who said there is a 1974 forgery I've yet to track down. So you may have to hope that this is the one!

Mike


Mike - easy. Easy! I think Mr Keel was wrong.
Next!

It's strange how the letters seem to use the same sort of odd spellings as displayed by Officer Richard Hoffman.
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby Zazu » Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:52 pm

This theme got me thinking. Last week I was sending some pages from my PhD work to my professor so that he can read them and comment on them and as he sent them back with good advice and comments, he also noted that I always spell some English words incorrectly, like: disappears (which I usually wrote as dissapears) and together (which all my life I have been writing as togeather), and few others. The thing is, English is not my native language and even tho I've studied it in school for years and even tho I need to use it in my scientific research and in my work, both in written and verbal form, some things I can't get into my mind (like I have to think a lot to decide in which cases to use "then" and when to use "than"). If the spelling mistakes that Zodiac made were not intentional, then maybe, just maybe, English wasn't his native language (especially when I look how many words that should end with -ing he is writing as ending with -eing). Just thinking out loud :)
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby traveller1st » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:03 am

Zazu wrote:This theme got me thinking. Last week I was sending some pages from my PhD work to my professor so that he can read them and comment on them and as he sent them back with good advice and comments, he also noted that I always spell some English words incorrectly, like: disappears (which I usually wrote as dissapears) and together (which all my life I have been writing as togeather), and few others. The thing is, English is not my native language and even tho I've studied it in school for years and even tho I need to use it in my scientific research and in my work, both in written and verbal form, some things I can't get into my mind (like I have to think a lot to decide in which cases to use "then" and when to use "than"). If the spelling mistakes that Zodiac made were not intentional, then maybe, just maybe, English wasn't his native language (especially when I look how many words that should end with -ing he is writing as ending with -eing). Just thinking out loud :)


English is my native language and I sometimes struggle with certain words and letter combinations, I think we all do. Maybe it's the nature and intricacy of the language itself. It is, I believe, purported to be one of the hardest languages to learn because of all it's little nuances. In that respect I'm not sure we can nail down Zodiac's dalliances to being caused by non-native learning but certainly something to consider. I have to say though, that your own little language faux pas made me smile Zazu. Despite being wrong they are quite intuitive, almost to the point that I have to stop looking at them lest I start using them myself lol. I could probably go and look but please, forgive me for not being aware, what is your own native tongue?
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Re: Spelling corrections

Postby entropy » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:12 am

mike_r wrote:Hi-

If the Badlands letter is legit, what do you think then? I've always viewed this letter with its five syllable words to be a "f%^k you" that Z wrote to his pursuers, to show them he was not some illiterate. However, my mind was poisoned by Alan Keel, who said there is a 1974 forgery I've yet to track down. So you may have to hope that this is the one!

Mike


I dunno, Mike. I've never been crazy about the Citizen letter but you make a good case for the Exorcist letter being suspect. The "big words" in the Citizen letter like "justifiable" and "consternation" are actually fairly easy to spell phonetically and the writer does screw up two words in the very first sentence. Again, I'm not questioning Z's vocabulary or intelligence- just his ability to distinguish certain spelling rules when options are phonetically equivalent.
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