Geek Lite: Vulcan calligraphy

Over the weekend (January 18/19), Wil Wheaton was retweeting nerdy tattoos. Given my personal stance on tattoos, especially the big ones (i.e., why would someone do that to themselves?!), I was a little skeptical, especially of the more graphical ones. But when you frame it in a, um, sensual part of the body and it looks like this …

I kind of really want one. (Correction: I want a spray-on or temporary version.) It’s like when those people get the wrong Chinese character tattoo, I’d be out of my element and make a mistake, so would the tattoo artist, making an error and thereby entirely changing the meaning.

The ongoing joke of the highest geekiness has been to say things in Klingon. You (I) didn’t really hear anything about Vulcan although I’m not that hardcore of a fan (obviously). I definitely identify better with Vulcans than Klingons and the mystery of the former has intrigued me more. From what I can tell, the language was conceived of and designed by Star Trek writers but fleshed out by linguists, language consultants like the man behind Korsaya and fans. It is now a language and I can’t naively go and type out my name “w-y-n-n-e” using Vulcan Script font and expect that it “makes sense”. According to T’Laina who runs Gen-lis Vuhlkansu, it takes a year to learn the language. A fleeting idea crossed my mind… then exited.

So, let’s just enjoy the beauty of ceremonial Vulcan calligraphy and leave it at that with an example from one of T’Laina’s posts.

The famous Arthur Conan Doyle/Sherlock Holmes quote, “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth,” is translated into Vulcan as “Lu snem-tor du ri-tor-yehat nam-tor yeht’es ek’if hafau — ri yauluhk uf rikesik.” Not every English word has a Vulcan equivalent and the Vulcan phrase translated back to English reads as, “When eliminate you not-possible be truth all’which remains – not important how unlikely.”

TradCallig-Deduction quote

Image from

On this day..