First on the program in Mr. Schtuppe’s class, when the introduction had finally ended, was a book called 30 Days to a More Powerful Vocabulary. “In 30 days, you will learn how to make words your slaves.”
Mr. Schtuppe’s unique twist on this was that he managed to mispronounce around half of them.
“The first word is ‘bête noire,’ ” he said. But he pronounced it “bait noir-ay,” with the emphasis on the “ay.”
“Bait noir-ay,” we said in unison. “Excellent.”
(We would have to wait till the end of the alphabet before we witnessed Mr. Schtuppe’s finest hour. That would be “wanton,” which he pronounced like “won ton,” the delicious Chinese dumpling often served in soup at the Pacific Rim’s finest eating establishments. That’s why Sam Hellerman and I will sometimes refer to a sexy girl as a Won Ton Woman.)
Note to self: one of these days, my next band is definitely going to be Beat Noir-ay. First album: “Talk Won Ton to Me, You Crazy Asian Superstar”. Lots of wok solos.
— Excerpt from “King Dork” by Frank Portman. (ROFL. ♚)