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A question concerning pronunciation. Is it FAL or F-A-L?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by ol' scratch, Feb 8, 2013.

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  1. k_dawg

    k_dawg Member

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    Plenty of Acronyms are said instead of spelled out.

    For example, NASA versus DOD

    Why? No idea. Nor do I know who 'makes the rules'.
     
  2. 12gaugeTim

    12gaugeTim Member

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    FAL is an acronym, so it would be wrong to correct anyone for saying it F-A-L, as pronouncing the individual letters of an acronym is always correct. However, in cases like NASA, ASAP, MOLLE, and AWOL, when an acronym resembles common vowel-consonant construction seen in most English words, it is pronounced as such.

    It is true that nobody vocalizes IBM as ibbum, but the vowel-consonant construction isn't comparable to that of an English word.

    It would be weird to hear someone vocalize NASA as N-A-S-A, but correct nevertheless. It's just never spoken that way, so it goes against what people are used to.

    FAL is like ASAP. I hear both spoken either way. Anyone who corrects you on your choice is being pretentious.
     
  3. kBob

    kBob Member

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    I first shot one in Europe in 1974.

    Other than a college kid on a range ten years ago I have never heard it pronounced as anything but individual letters when it was not called whatever the local or host military called them. S-L-R, "See One" "Gay Eins" and even L-A-R by some folks.

    As for ASAP, I never heard it as individual letters but as "A-SAP"until about 1983 in some movie or another. When I heard it as "A-S-A-P" afterwards it always made me think "Wanna-Bee" but since then have heard more recent vets use it as four letters.

    I suppose laguages evolve, but I will continue to be an eff aa El dinosaur for
    e-v-e-r .

    -kBob
     
  4. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    Really? Bad choice for an example.

    FYI, it is comfortably & understandably spoken that way by many people ... sounds like you have just never been around any of them.

    Originally, that is how EVERYONE said it considering N-A-S-A was created in the late '50s from N-A-C-A ... never heard anyone do anything but speak those letters, though. ;)
     
  5. MattShlock

    MattShlock Member

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    F-N F-A-L. But I'm jaded. I've only referred to them with professionals for decades and still shoot them on a military range -- I'm talking the real ones not civilian versions.
     
  6. k_dawg

    k_dawg Member

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    Talk to anyone into automotive racing.

    They say "NACA Air Ducts". Never heard "N-A-C-A Air Ducts"
     
  7. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    First I have ever heard of both "NACA Air Ducts" and N-A-C-A being referred to as NACA. Thanks for the info.

    I knew that N-A-C-A acquired some fame for an aircraft radial engine cowling that it designed back in the '20s(?), but never heard of the air ducts.

    My Dad started working for N-A-C-A in 1943 and he & his friends always pronounced the letters of N-A-C-A. They started out referring to NASA the same way and then shifted to both pronunciations when N-A-S-A started often being referred to as NASA.
     
  8. MCMXI

    MCMXI Member

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    I agree, particularly since there are so many more important things to correct e.g. caliber in place of cartridge :cuss:
     
  9. 12gaugeTim

    12gaugeTim Member

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    I have been to NASA and the people working there referred to it as NASA. Not N-A-S-A. I'd say that's a pretty good indicator that nobody calls it N-A-S-A anymore. Just because they did in the 50's doesn't mean they still do. Not to say that either way is the correct way.

    Language is a living thing, and when I said nobody calls it N-A-S-A anymore, I meant in the present, which is the only applicable meaning of my statement. How people used to say acronyms isn't important when language isn't static.

    People don't know how to pronounce the word form of FAL so many people just stick to the tried and true F-A-L. They can't decide between fail and fall so they default to the acronym.
     
  10. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    And I am trying to inform you that plenty of people still refer to it as both, interchangeably ...

    ... but if you refuse to accept that ... <shrug>

    O'course, in another 20-30 years, your statement will almost certainly be correct. :)

    When I refer to that organization it probably comes out almost exactly 50:50. I probably advanced to that point, from an N-A-S-A predominance, sometime in the '80s.

    I also prefer carBEAN to carBYNE and F-A-L to FAL.
     
  11. HorseSoldier

    HorseSoldier Member

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    I generally use "fal," rhyming with "pal," but I've heard plenty of gun-savvy people use F-A-L, as well as some use "fin-fal."

    I think in the modern military usage it is an emphasis thing. ASAP spelled out indicates more emphasis or urgency than "A-sap."
     
  12. Robert

    Robert Moderator Staff Member

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    FAL, F-A-L... does it matter? I use both and don't lose any sleep over it.
     
  13. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Yup, "nacka" ducts on race cars. :) It was once the hot-tip deal for ducting and aerodynamics.

    I dunno. Around campus in the late 1950s, it was NASA as a word. From the third floor of the Gatorland engineering building, we could see the Big Birds launch from Cape Canaveral.

    FWIW, I've pretty much always heard F-A-L. Ehh...Shrug.
     
  14. TexasPatriot.308

    TexasPatriot.308 Member

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    tomato tomatooo
     
  15. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    Absolutely.

    Something that I remembered yesterday after posting.

    After my dad died in '08, an old fellow showed up at the Funeral Home Viewing.

    He came up to me and told me that he had worked with my dad at N-A-S-A for 30 years ... saw the notice in the paper and recognized Dad's nickname and knew that it must his old buddy ... but never realized how close together they had ended geographically after retirement.

    Thinking back, his referring to it as N-A-S-A, for me, confirmed his claim since most of the world now, and for a long time, refers to it as NASA.

    Back OT ...

    I have heard the rifle in question referred to as FAL, F-A-L, F-N-F-A-L, F-N FAL ... but never, for one that is problematic, an effin F-A-L/FAL as someone suggested earlier. Made me laugh. :)
     
  16. Ash

    Ash Member

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    I have a friend who designed the seat on the lunar rover - literally he worked on the Apollo Program. He told me he worked for NASA and I never heard him say N-A-S-A.

    But tell me, what kind of sight do you have on your firearm. Does it have a laser or L-A-S-E-R?

    Radar or R-A-D-A-R? Sonar or S-O-N-A-R?

    It really doesn't matter. I say F-A-L and Em Fourteen and SetMe.
     
  17. MattShlock

    MattShlock Member

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    No-one here would know what u meant if you said we were drawing a FAL from the armory. Maybe that's from Call of Duty or something. But an (F-N) F-A-L? No prob!

    NACA? Whatever. But IOU more examples... Try that with NCAA March Madness. How about N-R-A. Do we say us army or The U-S Army? Or the N-S-A? Or C-I-A? F-B-I? Etc. P-L-E-A-S-E already!
     
  18. Nanook

    Nanook Member

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    This thread is the first time I've ever heard FAL as one word. I've always heard it as F-A-L, or F-N F-A-L.

    Must be a regional thing.

    NASA has always been a word as far as I can remember. I've never heard N-A-S-A spelled out like that.

    Maybe I live a sheltered life.
     
  19. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    Ditto and for the same reason.

    This post comes at an interesting time as I just recently learned the proper pronunciation of "Steyr".
    Man, was I ever saying that wrong.
     
  20. Ash

    Ash Member

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    You also said Steer?

    Sty -errr. That still doesen't look right, but when in Austria...
     
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