MISCELLANEOUS EZRA BLOGGING….I’ve always pronounced “banal” so that it rhymes with “anal.” Thus I’m crushed to find out from Ezra that I’m in the minority: among the experts on the American Heritage Usage Panel, only 38% prefer that pronunciation, compared to 46% who prefer the pronunciation that rhymes with “canal.” I’ve always considered that hopelessly pretentious. I wonder if it’s an East coast/West coast thing?

But I still have a question for Ezra: how could you and a friend have gotten into even a “meaningless dispute” over this? It only takes a few seconds to look it up.

On a related Ezra note, sign me up as a Christmas carol lover. Actually, that’s an unrelated note, isn’t it? Either way, I love Christmas carols, especially classic tunes ? anything written after 1900 is suspect in my book. For the perfect rendition of a classic carol, check out Amy Grant’s version of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.” Great stuff.