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Thursday, Nov. 13, 12:31 PM PST

Iraq or Iraqu? MLA Faces Greatest Challenge Ever

by Brent the Johnson,
NA!P NewsWire

NEW YORK -- The Modern Language Association, desperate for a stable, uneventful convention this year, is once again being rocked by yet another crisis.

At issue -- whether the word "Iraq" should end with a "U" or not.

A small band of English professors and graduate students are publicly threatening to settle the debate with "a display of pugilism of the fiercest sort that may result in the spilling of the reddest claret from the no-goods' noses" should no consensus be reached.

"Clearly, we ought to be calling Iraqu 'Iraqu,' per standard American English usage," states Prof. Charles Marbre, head of English Literature department at Modesto Junior College in California.

"We don't spell Quicken 'Qicken,' now do we? No, we do not," Marbre explained.

Marbre, who first raised the issue with fellow members of the MLA at the 1992 convention, declared that English should "brook no exceptions" to the "Q-U" rule.

"In a language already reeling from the thousands of exceptions, thus confounding a complete understanding of it, must we, after all these centuries of continuous standardization, surrender the organizing principles of the English language?" Marbre asks in his 1997 paper, "For U the Q Calls."

The MLA has never addressed the issue, and now Marbre and his small band of renegade professors, lecturers and graduate students are impatient.

"I must confess that I am near the end of this particular journey," Marbre declared, cracking his knuckles. "Should the MLA once again shelve my motion to standardize the spelling of Iraqu, 'heads will roll,' as they say."

However, Marbre may have met his match with MLA member Jorge "Dos Toneladas" Gonzalez, a 350-pound wrestler from Honduras.

"IF THAT BENDAJO THINK HE MAKE ME TO SPELL IRAQ DIFFERENT FROM WHAT I DO, I STUFF THE PUTO'S CAJONES INTO HIS BUTTHOLE, AND I LIKE SEE WHAT HE DO 'BOUT IT!" Gonzalez declared during a guest appearance on last Thursday's episode of WWE Smackdown.

Such animosity between opposing camps at MLA functions are not unheard of. Last year, three professors and a student died when rioting ensued after the MLA declared serial commas to be "standard usage."

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