There is a carob bean, actually, and I know it's grown in tropical climates, but
that's about all I know about it. I'm not sure what they do with it, except
perhaps use its oil (like canola, linseed or safflower).

This reminds me of an incident that happened when JWR was at our house. I said the
word "amalgam" but pronounced it AM-al-gam. John wanted to know if that was a
Canadian pronunciation, as he'd always said ah-MAL-gam. And he was right -- I had
put the em-PHAS-is on the wrong syl-LAB-le. I guess I just hadn't heard the word
spoken often enough for its pronunciation to sink in. There are a lot of words
like that that I've encountered while reading, that I'd be too embarrassed to say
out loud for fear I'd be mangling the pronunciation -- the sure sign of an
over-dilettantish but sincere amateur ;-)

...I just did a google search and found an FAO publication which says it's also
known as the locust bean, and its gum is apparently used as a laxative. Now you
know I couldn't have just made that one up!

Ya learn something knew every day...

Stephen Beecroft wrote:

> -Marc-
> > No wonder Microsoft's spellchecker is so lousy ;-) (carabiners,
> > from a German word for "carbine hook".
> Ah. I had never seen/heard the term, and the guy (Russian)
> called/spelled them "carob-beaners". I wondered how that term had come
> about. What's a "carob bean", anyway?
> But I had nothing to do with Microsoft's spell-checker. Otherwise, it
> wouldn't suggest "Bereft" every time I write my name.
> > IIRC, aren't Italy's alpine police known as carabinieri?)
> Yes, the special forces guys who carry machine guns. Also known as
> carob-beaners.

Ah, so maybe "carob" is the north Italian word (what's that funny Rhaeto-Romanish
dialect they speak up in some of the valleys in the Alps near the Swiss border,
Ladino or something like that?) for "head." They bop people on the carobs with
their machine guns.

Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“Knowledge may give weight, but accomplishments give lustre, and many more people
see than weigh.” – Lord Chesterfield

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author’s employer,
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