It’s Blogging 101 Day 2! Today’s task is to choose a title and tag line for your blog, I’d chosen mine before the start of the course so I thought I’d write a short piece about what they mean & why I chose them.
I think my tagline ‘Small Island Scientist’ is fairly self explanatory, I am a scientist and I’m from a small island. I was slightly worried that it might be interpreted as my being a small scientist who studied islands (and on that note, what do you call someone who studies islands?), but having just discovered that I’m 2 inches shorter than I previously believed, I decided it was best not to dwell on this point.
The island in question is called Jersey, it’s one of the Channel Islands, located inside the Bay of St. Malo, France. It’s 9 x 5 miles at high tide and doubles in size at lowest tide…that’s right folks, we’re 50% beach, come visit. Contrary to the belief of some of my more confused acquaintances we’re not actually part of France…or England…or America, but a Norman Balliwick, which, thanks to a win in that famous battle of 1066, makes us a British Crown Dependency.
Nowadays English is the most common language spoken on the island but Jèrriais, a form of the Norman language, is the historic mother-tongue. It’s a dying language, popular amongst my grandparents’ generation but otherwise rarely spoken. Most of my memories growing up are actually of older people using it to curse in…if I’d been paying attention I would probably have an arsenal of Jèrriais insults and curse words by now.
I’ve been living in England for a few years, I moved away because I wanted to go to university and, finding that I wanted to pursue science as a career, I stayed. Like many people living far from home I sometimes get pangs of nostalgia and it was during one of these that I started looking up the island’s language and history. I’m still a long way from stringing a sentence together, but I’m slowly building my vocabulary.
“Faîtelle” is the Jèrriais word for one of ‘the little people’ mythological creatures like imps or fairies. Whilst I can’t say I’m fond of those types of things it’s my favorite Jèrriais word, it reminds me of my Nan, who used to use another Jèrriais word meaning ‘imp’ when me and my brother misbehaved as children, I’ve long since forgotten the exact word she used, but the memories make me smile. I like the sound and the spelling of the word as well, it makes me think of the French word ‘Fatale’, and then my favorite Guy de Maupassant story ‘Femme Fatale’, the spelling makes me think of ‘fait elle’, and then ‘elle fait’, meaning ‘she does’, which I think sums me up pretty well. Playing with words like that is probably a little silly but it’s the sort of word that sparks off a lot of ideas for me and I knew immediately that I wanted it for my blog title.
Looking forward to seeing the names everyone chooses for their blogs!