Jonathon’s talked recently about the way his name is modified by Japanese speakers to make it a word they can more easily pronounce. This is probably why, while watching the World Cup game between Brazil and England this afternoon, I noticed the oddball way that the name ‘Ronaldo’ (who’s still an idiot, as far as I’m concerned) is rendered in Korean.
It’s doubly odd, because Han’gul (the Korean alphabet) is perfectly capable of rendering the name perfectly.
which sounds like Ro – Nal – Do, would be the perfect way to go, I’d think. Sounds almost identical, bar the minor differences in the way the ‘r’ sound and the ‘o’ sounds are pronounced in Korea.
For some reason, the Korean spelling of his name on TV today (and all the other times I’ve seen it) looked like this :
This sounds like Ho – Na – Oo – Doo.
What the hell is up with that? I have no idea.
But this creative mangling of the sounds of names and other words imported from other languages drives me moderately batty sometimes, as one of the things I have to do in my work is (for example) to disabuse my students of the notion that the proper English pronunciation of ‘sports’ is ‘suh-PO-chuh’, which is the correct way to pronounce the word as it is written in Korean. This tends to be difficult, as they’ve seen and heard the word in all its Konglish glory every damn day of their lives for 20 years, on the evening news.
Don’t even get me started on ‘Fighting!’
Ah well. That’s what they pay me the big bucks for.