The wonderful multiple identities of the world’s favourite acronym
Of course, acronyms are terrific time-savers, but sometimes, inevitably, they cause a little confusion too. For instance, as someone who worked for a few years in securities regulation, I spent time immersed in the detailed grindings of the CSA, that is the Canadian Securities Administrators, so I still experience a bit of a jolt when I hear those same initials used to denote the Canadian Snowbird Association, or the Canadian Space Agency, or the Canadian Standards Association, or whatever else it might be. Perhaps this overlap occasionally causes real problems – one conjures an image of an intrepid adventurer, imagining himself en route to the space station, being sent instead to fine tune some dusty aspect of the MD&A rules. Anyway, I mentioned before that IFRS (or more precisely “IFRs”) is also used as the acronym for integral fast reactors – nuclear power stations capable of running on material left behind by old nuclear plants. And then I came across this tweet:
It’s not really clear why “Impacting for our Generations” came out that way, except perhaps that “IFOG” sounded too much as if Apple had invented a new kind of pollution. Anyway, I did some digging, and to my surprise found even more uses of IFRS as an acronym, to which I naturally reacted with a mixture of fascination and resentment. Here they are, and I’m sure you’ll feel much the same about them:
Iowa Fried Rice Symposium
When you think of Iowan cuisine, your mind may leap to images of fresh corn, pork tenderloin and cheese, all served up mouth-wateringly fresh from America’s Heartland. But demographic change comes to all places, and even the Hawkeye State is increasingly likely to stir-fry its delicacies in a wok. In this quadrennial event, timed to avoid the tiring recurring onslaught of Presidential candidates, Iowa’s fried rice devotees gather to debate such timeless questions as the relative merits of Burmese over Thai, the optimal proportion of scallions, and the limits of the human tolerance for kimchi, and to enjoy the popular “Sticky T-shirt” contest. A staple of the culinary calendar!
I Fire Random Servants
An increasingly popular pastime among the 1%, who after their exhausting debates about private planes and the price of private islands compete to outdo each other at the most elemental privilege of the wealthy, to be allowed to fire whomever the hell they want. Reports suggest that the super-rich are increasingly loading up on unnecessary domestic staff solely for the ego-boost of subsequently bragging about how many under-performing bums they kicked off their property. In its most rarified version, the game may involve firing wives and children too.
It’s Finally Rodeo Season!
A celebratory cry heard, obviously, in some communities more than others.
Ideas Fade Really Suddenly
Especially after too much drinking, I guess.
Iggy’s Final Road Show?
Used by aficionados of legendary rock and roll hall of fame member Iggy Pop to facilitate their recurring expressions of fear that their hero’s touring days may already have wound down. We’re talking no more Lust for Life live, no more The Passenger – it’s a miracle his fans are as calm as they are. Can also be used to refer to the career prospects of more recently prominent Iggy Azalea, whose days of glory are likely already behind her for different reasons.
Irish Frogs Really Stink
And how! The toads too. Must be something to do with the peat.
If Frenchmen Read Shakespeare
An expression of improbability, used in the same way as If Pigs Could Fly. It continues in occasional use despite ample evidence that Frenchmen (and women) do in fact read Shakespeare about as much as you could reasonably expect them to. The better expression of rampant fantasy would of course be: If Republicans Read Shakespeare.
I Finally Realized Something
A useful thing to blurt out at those moments when all the errors of your ways suddenly coalesce in your consciousness, fully establishing the meaninglessness of your existence.
Italy’s Finest Radish Strokers
In this low-profile annual gathering, Sardinia welcomes a motley bunch of the digitally dexterous, eager to accept the challenge of showing off their talented fingers within a time-honoured constraint – on radishes only. In various stages of the showdown, contestants fondle the radishes, juggle them, make them dance, sautee them in their own palm sweat, and arrange them in whimsically suggestive poses. Bravo et brava, maestri e mastra!
I Feel Really Shitty
A universal expression of unenjoyment, coincidentally often uttered as a result of exposure to the IFRS we already knew about.
Well, I hope you found our little survey instructive. In a future installment, we dive into the equally compelling world of IASB acronyms. Did I hear someone say: I am so bloated!
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author