3/01/2006

The Middle Ground of Transliteration

Every year around this time, I am reminded of the importance of transliteration conventions. Personally, I’ve found the Torah U-Madda Journal style sheet easiest to use, with the minor modifications of the VBM, like ch for chet and tz for tzadi. The conventions for use of hyphens and apostrophes are very clean and useful.
For the purposes of communication, one need not employ rules like Mar Gavriel, Steg, and the rest of the Mis-dakdekim.  

Why this time of year? Well, it’s the Jewish season of giving, when I receive solicitations from all types of tzedakah organizations. Yesterday, I received a solicitation from Kupat Hair, the self-proclaimed ‘Tzedakah of the Gedolim’ who live in B’nei Brak. I thought it might be something like Locks of Love or some type of tonsure-tzedakah. Alas, it’s just a poor, but amusing, transliteration.

Then there’s my favorite poorly transliterated charitable organization: Kupat R’ Meir Baal Hanes. I find the idea that a Tanna would be remembered by the make of his underwear to be hilarious.
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