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Alfa Alfa - A Limited Story

“Alfalfa?”

“Bravo Charlie” I brayed, scampering back to the hall mirror, closing my eyes to the deltas of wrinkles spreading out jauntily from every corner of my characterful face, closing my ears to the over-throttled roar of his prized Bonneville echoing up and down the cul-de-sac.

Living with Charlie was like doing the foxtrot with a bag of golf clubs . . . . he was always tripping you up . . . . . Like that business in the hotel when we first arrived in India, Juliet a paler shade of white on account of the kilo she’d been swaddling round her middle since Lima (Mike! . . . I should have killed him back in november when I had the chance) and Charlie, making his bid for an Oscar no doubt, suddenly starts spouting this nonsense about Papa Doc hiding out in Quebec, complete with latin romeo and a done deal with the local separatists concerning their latest terrorist atrocity . . . . . . . Of course I hadn’t seen the black Sierra, nor anticipated the terse verbal tango that ensued with the uniformed custom’s officer who’d quietly crept up behind us . . .

“To the victor the spoils!” Charlie suddenly trumpeted, giving a quick, mock ‘one, two’ to Juliet’s bulging midriff before spinning around to extract a bonded whiskey bottle from our clinking luggage, plying the stunned official with a treble and asking him if he’d brought his x-ray machine with him . . . . The poor guy stumbled out muttering something about crazy yankees.

“Are you still on Zulu Time or what?!” I exploded

“Doorman” he grinned, “On the door, as we came in” pouring me and my traffic light complexion a double double.

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Comments

  • Zefira
    Zefiraover 3 years ago

    brilliant!

  • phew! . . . . glad someone likes it . . . . . written and posted very quickly yesterday . . . . . . necessarily nonsense

    – Bjondon

  • Tiznar
    Tiznarover 3 years ago

    Dave must be proud of you, or laughing his head off.
    Very clever and I think you got ’em all in… !!

  • Yippee! . . . . . good morning, or should that be good evening Tiz . . . . . . I’m waiting nervously for Dave’s reaction . . . . . . Thought of including the entire bizarre list in the tags, but that would have been too easy :))

    – Bjondon

  • Tiznar
    Tiznarover 3 years ago

    I really was envisioning the story line and then “click” and oh, my, just too good … reminds me of Evelyn Waugh gone punk. Or something.
    p.s. It is just past 1 a.m.

  • You will be asleep now, but thanks for the vote of confidence . . . . . If I wanted to be really pretentious I could venture a comparison with what Barthes described as ‘empty writing’ . . . . . I do enjoy this sort of abstract prose gaming, but not really committed (interested?) enough to do it seriously . . . . . so just a bit of fun . . .˙∆˚¬

    – Bjondon

  • rb1fm
    rb1fmover 3 years ago

    My alter ego asked me to pass on this link to the full visual encoding. This time with a larger ‘font’.

  • Most kind rb1fm . . . . . please thank your alter ego . . . . I am sure he will be amused to hear I attempted to download the ‘image’ (Ha!) . . . . . . eventually resorted to Grab (needed 4) . . . . . will promise to negotiate a commission when I get my 20ft high bathroom tiled :)

    – Bjondon

  • rb1fm
    rb1fmover 3 years ago

    I attempted to download the ‘image’ (Ha!)

    :O))

    Tiles are a good idea. Suddenly I need a kiln :O)

  • rb1fm
  • | ||| ||| ||º ||| ||| |ºº . . . reminds me of linear B . . . . perhaps combine three codes as a ‘soft’ rosetta stone

    Is there an international debate about the correct spelling of alfa/alpha?

    – Bjondon

  • rb1fm
    rb1fmover 3 years ago

    I slipped back into the phonetic spelling for the title. Everything else is a direct coding of your writing. Should I correct myself or not? I will take the guidance of your own words ‘Once transmitted, no corrections allowed’ and so will leave as-is. The most famous alfa is a make of car and then of course there is the ‘alfalfa’ too – a plant I believe :O)

  • Focussing on this strange alphabet, it does seem a travesty to spell alfa that way . . . . Apparently it’s all down to the International Civil Aviation Organisation . . . . . And I can’t help thinking (pre-wiki) that the Alfa Romeo make of cars was inspired by this list . . . . . I’m guessing the letters AR actually stand for something very mundane and utilitarian . . . . will have a quick butchers

    – Bjondon

  • Well, a slightly strange story . . . . . ALFA stands for Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili . . . . . quite how that word ‘anonima’ is understood in Italian I don’t know (a straight translation gives ‘anonymous’) . . . . . but otherwise a fairly utilitarian tale . . . . the company being bought by Nicola Romeo in 1915. . . . . so no connection to NATO, aeroplanes or policemen then.

    – Bjondon

  • rb1fm
    rb1fmover 3 years ago

    I should probably have latched onto alfa, if only because most of the things i did in work in the later half of the last century would have been governed by the ITU. However, since then, the freedom of the internet and the different perspective of a computing background (rather than a telecom’s background) have encouraged a more open interpretation of standards and indeed the formulation and adoption of many slight variations, or proprietary implementations. In the days before cheap computing power such differences would have made equipment totally incompatible, today it means the occasional glitch which is usually fixed by the next (over the web) software update. This certainly makes for a richer environment but, not necessarily one that is easy to understand or gain a shared understanding of.

  • I am easy either way . . . . . I imagine the ICAO spelt it that way because there are more than a few languages where it would seem completely bizarre to pronounce ‘ph’ as ‘f’ (reminded here of Bernard Shaw’s spelling of the word fish as ghoti . . . . . making a logical deduction from the pronunciation of ‘laugh’, ‘women’ and ‘motion’) . . . . . If they’d been more consistent they should have made a dozen or so other changes (e.g. romeo becomes ‘romio’) . . . . . but I guess the system functions, which is the ultimate test (and essential criteria and reason for most of the apparent peculiarities of all languages [giving all objects a gender is one I have never fathomed])

    – Bjondon

  • rb1fm
    rb1fmover 3 years ago

    The spelling really doesn’t matter as the words are never used except to ensure the right sound comes out of the message senders mouth. That is, the words are used to ensure clear communications over a noisy speech channel.

    Anyway, I liked how the words looked when underlined (as in the link I posted earlier), so there is a new implementation of this on my blog. It is placed there and not here because all the underlines (used to connect character codes into words) seemed to confuse the RB text coding system, while HTML seems to cope just fine.

  • rb2fm
    rb2fmover 3 years ago

    There is another slight variation here on RB.

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