Wednesday, April 11, 2007

SWNID Promotes and Improves New Religious Classification

Last week's Cincinnati Enquirer offered to its readers a helpful neologism to refer to those many people who attend church services on the Christmas and Easter holidays. On Easter past, SWNID promoted the term at his own congregation, using it as a starting point for a brief discourse on the Lord's Supper.

But we didn't realize until today that we had actually improved the term.

The Enquirer reports the term as "cheaster," defined, per above, as one who goes to church only on Christmas and Easter. SWNID reported the term as "chreaster." We reported from memory, and did not remember what the article actually said.

Our pronounciation is obviously superior. After all, the holiday is Christmas--with a hard, aspirated palatal consonant followed by a palatal liquid, not Chistmas--with a soft aspirated palatal consonant alone. On said holiday, Christians celebrate the birth of Christ, not Chistians Chist. The latter would be pronounced in a way more reminiscent of a mineral than a messiah.

Gentle readers should not that this was not a mistake on SWNID's part, by definition something in our world possible but rare, but an unconscious improvement of an otherwise useful but etymologically inconsistent expression.

We acknowledge in advance the thanks of the religious and irreligious communities for this important service that we accidentally but helpfully rendered.


JB in CA said...

Round about 1998, I heard a woman who was an elder in her local Disciples of Christ congregation use the term "chreaster" (not "cheaster") to describe her daughter. I guess great minds think alike.

By the way, I kind of prefer "cheaster" to "chreaster." If we pronounce its initial two letters as a "hard, aspirated palatal consonant followed by a palatal liquid," rather than as a whimpy, "soft aspirated palatal consonant alone," it conjures up notions of cheasters doing little more than sitting on their ... well ... keisters during their two trips to church.

Hensel said...

But I thought Christ was the "solid rock" on to which we stand. Wouldn't something that sounds like a mineral be just tongue and cheek enough to be cool?

Although I do think that with "cheaster" more people are going to think "cheater" than "CHristmas/EASTER."

Anonymous said...

In my ministry I refer to them as,
C n' Ers, Christmas and Easter.

I also call them the secret service. I don't care if they come, just as long as bring their money. Hey, if they want religion, I think they should pay for it.

--aaron burgess