Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

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Jean Fournell
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Jean Fournell » Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:17 pm

Holydove, I'm not sure I understand what you're saying either.
(Or rather: I'm sure that I don't understand.) :)

So let me try again:

Common syntax:

When hatred comes with his package
We have somebody do something
We have technicians repair the engines
We had Names produce more effects
(more effects than when invoked by people to whom they are not blood but merely dust)

Inverted to:

"When hatred with his package comes"
We have somebody / something do
We have technicians / the engines repair
We had Names / more effects produce

Would that work?
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to say nothing of the horse.

... for a while
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Hartmut
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Re: AW: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Hartmut » Sun Sep 21, 2014 12:13 am

holydove wrote:"fat" wouldn't work, because that wouldn't rhyme with the adjective form of "intimate" either. It would have to be "fit".
I had considered 'fit' as well, but in my juvenile way I thought 'fat' might be funnier.

Anyway, 'intimate' and 'fat', I know that's not a perfect rhyme, but quite close; and he uses a lot of imperfect rhymes - and to great effect.
holydove wrote:And I thought Leonard Cohen WAS consulting with you. . .
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Hartmut
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Re: AW: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Hartmut » Sun Sep 21, 2014 12:18 am

Jean Fournell wrote:"When hatred with his package comes"
We have somebody / something do
We have technicians / the engines repair
We had Names / more effects produce
My god, what have I started?

Or rather: God my, what started have I?
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lizzytysh
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby lizzytysh » Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:03 am

I like your explanation best, holydove.
Once, again, Leonard gives plenty of material for ponder.
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby lindyasimus » Sun Sep 21, 2014 7:12 am

Delicious ambiguity.

That's part of what we love about Leonard.

Always a mystery.
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Jean Fournell
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Jean Fournell » Sun Sep 21, 2014 3:56 pm

Ok, let me sum up the avalanche:

"we had Names / more intimate"

we bore Names [which were, and/or do, something] (or rather: names?)
we knew Names [which were, and/or do, something] (with a capital N)
we made Names [do something]



And now I guess it's high time for me to stop talking gibberish and to acknowledge defeat.

And to present my apologies for having pushed this "pronunciation" thread far beyond its limits into "syntax".

But since I can't help it, maybe another idea is a bit less off-topic:

Wouldn't it be helpful, perhaps, to collect a few more examples where Leonard Cohen stretches his pronunciation?
Possibly organised in several categories:

in order to make it fit the rhyme
in order to convey a double meaning
in order to make a pun
(to me, "Nevermind" is blood, not dust; but never mind)

Comparison might possibly help to see more clearly...
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Therefore know that you must become one with the bow, and with the arrow, and with the target
to say nothing of the horse.

... for a while
... for a little while...

(Just a filthy beggar blessing / What happens to the heart)
Tchocolatl
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Tchocolatl » Sun Sep 21, 2014 4:30 pm

Going further that way leads me to :

Our Names are better than your Names.

Our Names are alive - (we are truly living in G-d)
Your Names are dead - (you are using religion to live contrary to the Name)

Our Names are the good ones - they give life
Your Names are the bad ones - they give death

We are worthy
You are not

We are human
You are not

*

Or

I'm blindy furious like hell about what you have done. I have to cut the communication to protect myself from you, it is clear that you use it only to take power over me. Now I think that I have to protect me from you.

Some day,
We may mate again.

Hope being left at the bottom of the box.
***
"He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love."

Leonard Cohen
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Jean Fournell
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Jean Fournell » Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:38 pm

cohenadmirer wrote:i'm sure it's purely and simply about stretching the language and pronunciation to keep things rhyming!
The master of this was Mr Dylan

Better jump down a manhole
Light yourself a candle
Don't wear sandals
Try to avoid the scandals
Don't wanna be a bum
You better chew gum
The pump don't work
'Cause the vandals took the handles

to cite but one

'vague traces of skipping reels of rhyme'
I had a few rejuvenating listens into "Subterranean Homesick Blues": to my (non-English) ears it sounds very much like "man-hole / candle" (not can-dole, no stretched pronunciation); and the "pump" is clearly singular whilst the "handles" are clearly plural (the stretched logic sounding somewhat like an afterthought: "handle-zzz").

Now in order to set the logic right, Bob Dylan could have made it pumps, but he didn't.

Here's just one suggestion why not:

With regard to the deaths occurring in the locality belonging to the pump, there were 61 instances in which I was informed that the deceased persons used to drink the pump water from Broad Street, either constantly or occasionally...
The result of the inquiry, then, is, that there has been no particular outbreak or prevalence of cholera in this part of London except among the persons who were in the habit of drinking the water of the above-mentioned pump well.
I had an interview with the Board of Guardians of St James's parish, on the evening of the 7th inst
[that is: 7th September 1854], and represented the above circumstances to them. In consequence of what I said, the handle of the pump was removed on the following day.

John Snow, in a letter to the editor of the Medical Times and Gazette
(quoted from Wikipedia)
Attachments
Handles.png
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Therefore know that you must become one with the bow, and with the arrow, and with the target
to say nothing of the horse.

... for a while
... for a little while...

(Just a filthy beggar blessing / What happens to the heart)
RainDog1980
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby RainDog1980 » Thu Sep 25, 2014 11:46 pm

cohenadmirer wrote:i'm sure it's purely and simply about stretching the language and pronunciation to keep things rhyming!
'vague traces of skipping reels of rhyme'
I agree with this... he does the same in "A Street" when saying "camoflage" and the slant rhyme with "bath".
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby panjandrum » Sun Sep 28, 2014 3:26 am

RainDog1980 wrote:
cohenadmirer wrote:i'm sure it's purely and simply about stretching the language and pronunciation to keep things rhyming!
'vague traces of skipping reels of rhyme'
I agree with this... he does the same in "A Street" when saying "camoflage" and the slant rhyme with "bath".
I guess I fundamentally agree that it's *probably* just stretching for a rhyme. But, let's not forget Cohen is truly a master of language. I expect if we had a time-machine we would likely see Cohen studied hundreds of years from now, in much the same way we study Donne or Byron, or even (as Adam might put it) Willie Shakespeare. So I wouldn't completely rule out a purposeful double meaning. I guess maybe a clear example of this type of "doubling" is Closing Time, where "very close" sounds nearly exactly like "varicose", and in which both words would work perfectly.

Plus, there are times when Leonard specifically avoids obvious rhymes when it suits him, so he's not obsessed with rhyme: "And you turn in disgust, from your hatred and from your love", where "lust" where "lust" would by the obvious rhyme.

As for camouflage, could that be the Canadian pronunciation? I'm almost sure I remember an old interview with another famous Canadian in which the pronunciation of this word was discussed and in which the Canadian pronounced it exactly as Leonard does on this album. (Was it Shatner??? Anyone else remember this??? It was a LONG time ago... I could easily be misremembering...)
RainDog1980
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby RainDog1980 » Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:35 pm

panjandrum wrote: As for camouflage, could that be the Canadian pronunciation? I'm almost sure I remember an old interview with another famous Canadian in which the pronunciation of this word was discussed and in which the Canadian pronounced it exactly as Leonard does on this album. (Was it Shatner??? Anyone else remember this??? It was a LONG time ago... I could easily be misremembering...)
You know, I have thought about this over and over, that maybe it's a dialectal difference. Good question.
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Mollydog » Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:53 am

RainDog1980 wrote:
panjandrum wrote: As for camouflage, could that be the Canadian pronunciation? I'm almost sure I remember an old interview with another famous Canadian in which the pronunciation of this word was discussed and in which the Canadian pronounced it exactly as Leonard does on this album. (Was it Shatner??? Anyone else remember this??? It was a LONG time ago... I could easily be misremembering...)
You know, I have thought about this over and over, that maybe it's a dialectal difference. Good question.
To my ear the way that Leonard says camouflage sounds like the way it is pronounced here in Canada.

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Jean Fournell
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Jean Fournell » Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:24 pm

To my non-English ear, this pronunciation of "camouflage":
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOoztUHRuk4
is what Leonard Cohen says.

And my "Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary of Current English" and my "Robert & Collins French~English English~French Dictionary" both give this as the only possibility.

I'm totally at a loss in this discussion about "stretched pronunciation", which I can't find anywhere in the quoted examples.
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Therefore know that you must become one with the bow, and with the arrow, and with the target
to say nothing of the horse.

... for a while
... for a little while...

(Just a filthy beggar blessing / What happens to the heart)
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Elizabeelzebubeth » Mon Oct 06, 2014 7:57 pm

Hartmut wrote:I'm quite confused about the pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in the song 'Nevermind'.

He pronounces it in a way that rhymes with 'fate'. I always thought this pronunciation was correct only for the verb 'to intimate'. For the adjective and for the noun the pronunciation should rhyme with 'met'. And all the sources I could find agree with this.
Hartmut, if you listen again very closely, I think you will find that he actually does pronounce it "in-ti-mit" and not "in-ti-mayt." The first time I heard this song I was reading ahead as I was listening, and I thought, "Uh-oh, he's not going to pronounce that as a perfect rhyme, is he?" I didn't really think he would say "in-ti-mayt," but I had to listen twice to be sure of what I had heard.

And I'm assuming the pronunciation of "camouflage" is Canadian, or maybe just old-fashioned. Same idea as his pronunciation of "Nazi" ("she waves a Nazi dagger"): vowel sound is like the "a" in "nasty."
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Hartmut
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Re: Pronunciation of the word 'intimate' in 'Nevermind'?

Postby Hartmut » Mon Oct 06, 2014 9:15 pm

Elizabeelzebubeth wrote: Hartmut, if you listen again very closely, I think you will find that he actually does pronounce it "in-ti-mit" and not "in-ti-mayt."
Thank you, Elizabeelzebubeth; that's an intriguing suggestion. Maybe I just missheard ...?

...

I just listened to it again, however; and no matter how high I crank up the the volume, I still hear "in-ti-mayt". So I don't know ...

Anybody else here who hears him singing "in-ti-mit"?

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