Waiting For Zed

Okay, everyone… sing with me!  A, B, C, D, E, F, G… H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P… Q, R, S,… T, U, V… W, X… Y and Zed… Huh?

Where did that Zed come from?  What happened to the good ol’ fashioned, unadulterated Z?  As in the Z that stands for Zorro… take me to Z Casaba… Z plane! Z plane! and Z maestro? 

Well, it turns out (and everyone knew this but me) Zed is the form of the last letter in the alphabet for the majority of English speaking countries in the world except the U. S. A.!  How could they all  get it wrong?  So I went to my trusty Wikipedia to look it up and sure enough, they all have it wrong.  No, seriously… It seems that somewhere in the American Revolution we decided to stick it to the English by not using the form Zed in our alphabet.  Guess we showed them not to mess with the colonists.

Early records say that the Boston Tea Party was originally called the Boston Z Party, but the throwing of consonants into Boston Bay by scholars and their scribes didn’t draw too much distain from the authorities.

In fact, old manuscripts reveal that Patrick Henry actually said something along the lines of, “Give me liberty… from the use of Zed!”  Years later Hollywood gave us a more dramatic, “Give me liberty or give me death!” but the request of the freedom from the use of Zed was drastically down played.  John Adams declared, “I must study the politics of Zed…”  which was transformed into, “I must study politics and war…” as a political slogan.  Our great maritime hero, John Paul Jones was asked once why he wouldn’t just give into the use of Zed and give up his feeble colonistic verbiage to which he valiantly replied, “I have not yet begun to fight… you hedonistic sons of Zed!”  But of course, since he was on dry land at the time no one took him seriously.

Perhaps it was a lisping Paul Revere trying to disguise his speech impediment that caused the negetivity over this Omega letter.  Declaring, “The Zedcoats are coming!  The Zedcoats are coming!” early Americans saw the letter Zed as something to be fearful of and thus decided to banish it from their pronounciation.  As a lad, George Washington formed a coalition of his fellow classmates to discover the truth behind the use of the form Zed instead of Z, which for political purposes became construed as not telling a lie over the chopping down of a cherry tree.  The militia that could be ready before you reached the letter Zed in a recital of the alphabet later became known as the slothy minute men.

Even our Declaration of Independance was originally entitled, “The Declaration of Independance From the Use of Zed and Other Grievances” sort of an “in your face” attitude to King George (the English one.)  But brevity took precedence over accuracy and the effort to show our defiance to the rest of the English speaking world has been muted.

So now I wonder, what if we hadn’t chosen “Zee” over “Zed?”  Well, since the majority of Americans are natural linguists and lyricists, imagine having to rhyme, “Now I know my ABC’s, next time won’t you sing with me?” if the alphabet ended with Zed?  It does’t work. “Now I know my ABC’s, next time won’t you sing with Fred?”  “next time I’ll just go to bed.” or something like that… “next time I’ll just bang my head”  “next time change the “A” instead” 

No doubt there are positive aspects.  A great name for a rock band could be the Grateful Zed or even, Zed Leppelin.  (my sweetie thought of that one, she’s so smart… don’t you just love her?)  We would be catching a few Zeds at nap time, referees at football games could be known as zedbras, Nissan should have a 350 Zed and some might have a zedro tolerance for this blog.  

Oh… perish the thought!

Zedippity do dah, zedippity ay!  My oh my it’s a zed-i-free day!

or something like that.







4 Responses to “Waiting For Zed”

  1. Chantal Says:

    I can tell you had fun writing this, because I had fun reading it! Very clever. I loved the alternate endings to the Alphabet Song, especially
    ”next time change the “A” instead” . I’ll teach that one to the kids 🙂

    Peace, sweetie

  2. Cyndi Says:

    Hey, Demetri can sing along to the ABC song–he loves it.

  3. wikipedia in english Says:

    […] Zed come from?? What happened to the good ol?? fashioned, unadulterated Z?? As in the Z that standshttps://chrisfiore5.wordpress.com/2008/05/05/waiting-for-zed/Visalia teen found dead The Hanford SentinelVISALIA — An unidentified teenager was found dead in a […]

  4. Zed Maestro Says:

    Funny stuff.

    They say Zed instead of Z in the UK, Canada, and the Caribbean Island of TRINIDAD, which is where I picked up the stage name: “Z. Maestro” for my musical abilities. (Had a well known 2-man act there: James & Zed.)
    Everyone knows me now as either -Z-, or Zed, even here in South Florida.

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