OK, so this is a little less of a Deep Thought and more of a mind f*ck. I learned by chance this week that the following is a real, honest to god sentence:
Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.
No, seriously, that’s it. That’s a legit sentence. Break it out by substitution and it becomes intelligible. The wiki entry is not really much of a help, but it does tell you how to substitute (by just subbing the noun versions and changing the verb version to “bully”). Essentially, you have three uses of Buffalo:
- The city Buffalo
- The noun meaning plural buffalo
- The verb meaning “to bully”
So with that context, and replacing the noun with other animals, you get the following:
Buffalo geese [that] Buffalo ducks bully bully Buffalo chickens.
Yeah, I’m just flabbergasted that “Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.”