Bravo Echo Charlie Alpha Uniform Sierra Echo India Tango India Sierra Tango Oscar Oscar Echo Alpha Romeo Lima Yankee Alpha November Delta India Charlie Alpha November November Oscar Tango Tango Hotel India November Kilo
India Foxtrot Yankee Oscar Uniform Charlie Alpha November Uniform November Delta Echo Romeo Sierra Tango Alpha November Delta Tango Hotel India Sierra, Charlie Oscar Papa Yankee Alpha November Delta Papa Alpha Sierra Tango Echo India Tango Tango Oscar Yankee Oscar Uniform Romeo Lima India Victor Echo Juliet Oscar Uniform Romeo November Alpha Lima
Alpha Sierra Foxtrot Oscar Romeo Mike Yankee Sierra Echo Lima Foxtrot
Yankee Echo Sierra Tango Echo Romeo Delta Alpha Yankee India Hotel Echo Alpha Romeo Delta Tango Hotel Echo Charlie Oscar Oscar Lima Echo Sierra Tango Sierra Oscar November Golf India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Lima India Kilo Echo X-Ray Kilo Charlie Delta Alpha Sierra Tango Hotel Oscar Uniform Golf Hotel Sierra Echo Tango Tango Oscar Mike Uniform Sierra India Charlie
India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Foxtrot Uniform November November Yankee Alpha November Delta India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Sierra Mike Alpha Romeo Tango Alpha November Delta India Quebec Uniform India Tango Echo Lima India Kilo Echo Delta India Tango Alpha Lima Oscar Tango
India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Alpha Bravo Oscar Uniform Tango Tango Hotel Echo Uniform November India Victor Echo Romeo Sierra Echo Alpha November Delta Oscar Uniform Romeo Papa Lima Alpha Charlie Echo India November India Tango Delta Oscar November Echo India November Alpha Romeo Alpha Tango Hotel Echo Romeo Charlie Hotel Alpha Romeo Mike India November Golf Sierra Oscar Romeo Tango Oscar Foxtrot Whiskey Alpha Yankee
Sierra Uniform Romeo Papa Romeo India Sierra India November Golf Lima Yankee India Tango Charlie Alpha Mike Echo Oscar November Alpha Charlie Hotel Romeo India Sierra Tango Mike Alpha Sierra Alpha Lima Bravo Uniform Mike Bravo Uniform Tango Tango Hotel Echo Romeo Echo Whiskey Alpha Sierra November Oscar Tango Hotel India November Golf Foxtrot Echo Sierra Tango India Victor Echo Alpha Bravo Oscar Uniform Tango India Tango
India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Hotel Oscar Whiskey Echo Victor Echo Romeo Sierra Charlie Oscar Tango Tango India Sierra Hotel
India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Tango Hotel Echo Kilo India November Delta Oscar Foxtrot Sierra Oscar November Golf Tango Hotel Alpha Tango India Whiskey Oscar Uniform Lima Delta India November Charlie Lima Uniform Delta Echo Oscar November Alpha Mike India X-Ray Tango Alpha Papa Echo Alpha Sierra Sierra Uniform Mike India November Golf India Mike Alpha Delta Echo Mike India X-Ray Tango Alpha Papa Echo Sierra
India Tango Whiskey Alpha Sierra Sierra Mike Alpha Romeo Tango Alpha November Delta India Lima India Kilo Echo Delta India Tango Alpha November Delta Tango Hotel Alpha Tango India Sierra Alpha Lima Lima Tango Hotel Alpha Tango Mike Alpha Tango Tango Echo Romeo Sierra
Sierra Tango Alpha Yankee Tango Uniform November Echo Delta
ETA: So I’ve basically slashdotted my own damn blog by copying a meme I picked up from Dayton Ward and David Mack. *sigh*
If you’re coming in, via a search engine, because you’ve seen a bunch of words that begin “India Foxtrot Yankee Oscar Uniform Charlie” and you don’t know what they mean, I’m here to let you in on the secret.
I learned this in high school from Tom Clancy books. It’s used by military personnel to communicate over radio, with the letters of each word replaced by a standardized list of words.
Naturally, I saw the jumble of words that began “India Foxtrot Yankee Oscar Uniform Charlie” and understood it instantly.
What does the mass of wordage mean? Well, that’s pretty easy.
What I posted reads:
Because it is too early and I cannot think
If you can understand this copy and paste it to your LiveJournal
It’s that latter line that’s shown up in lots of places today across the ‘net. Perhaps you saw the second paragraph at the top of this post on LiveJournal. Or maybe you saw the following on Facebook:
India Foxtrot Yankee Oscar Uniform Charlie Alpha November Uniform November Delta Echo Romeo Sierra Tango Alpha November Delta Tango Hotel India Sierra, Charlie Oscar Papa Yankee Alpha November Delta Papa Alpha Sierra Tango Echo Tango Oscar Yankee Oscar Uniform Romeo Sierra Tango Alpha Tango Uniform Sierra
That, by the way, means:
If you can understand this copy and paste to your status
The first line, the “Because it is too early and I cannot think,” was me introducing the meme. And then I decided, “Well, fuck, I’ll write a whole message in the phonetic alphabet.” Because I’m silly like that.
As for myself
Yesterday I heard the coolest song it was like xkcd as though set to music
It was funny and it was smart and I quite liked it a lot
It was about the universe and our place in it done in a rather charming sort of way
Surprisingly it came on a Christmas album but there was nothing festive about it
It was however Scottish
It was the kind of song that I would include on a mixtape assuming I made mixtapes
It was smart and I liked it and that is all that matters
It is not, all things considered, the most profound of messages. I also thought, briefly, of using a different phonetic alphabet, just to keep people guessing. The Wikipedia article lists the phonetic alphabet used by British soldiers during World War I, in which case “As for myself…” would have read “Ack Esses Freddie Oranges Robert Emma Yorker Esses Edward London Freddie.” And that actually would have confused people.
I also didn’t type out the phonetic alphabet. I wrote the message in Microsoft Word, and used some killer search-and-replace routines to do the heavy lifting. Wild card searches are your friends.
The song, by the way, was not “A Glorious Dawn,” which I have raved about since I first heard it a few months ago. It wasn’t even really a song, now that I think about it. More like a spoken word piece set to music. Still really cool.
If you’re arriving here, trying to make sense of a mass of words that look like words but make absolutely no sense, hopefully I’ve managed to edify you.
The NATO Phonetic Alphabet. It wants to be your friend.Originally posted at allyngibson.net. Cross-posted to LiveJournal.