1. says

    Ice Swimmer:

    Vala is Finnish for “oath”.

    Oh, nice! According to my very old name book, the Germanic meaning is ‘chosen’.

  2. Ice Swimmer says

    Ah yes, the word for choose or elect is still välja in Swedish and wählen in German. Election is val or Wahl respectively (pronounced the same).

  3. rq says

    “Vēlēt” and “vēlēšanas” for to vote and election, respectively, over here. Also, interestingly, “vēlēties” and “vēlēšanās” are to wish and a wish/desire (so basically a reflexive form of choosing, as a wish is something you choose for yourself). “Izvēle” is choice, “izvēlēties” is to choose; the little prefix “iz” means, more or less, ‘out of’ (an external motion, as it were). (I think there’s an etymological tie for the word for voice (“balss”) but I can’t confirm that; variants of this are used as synonyms for voting and elections.)
    (Also cute rat :) )

  4. Ice Swimmer says

    Perhaps it isn’t a coincidence that the Swedish and German verbs for want/wish are similar to the verbs for choose/elect. In Swedish the verb is vilja (I want = jag vill) and in German wollen (I want = ich will, as Rammstein has taught all of us). The Finnish word for election isn’t a coincidence, vaali (usually in plural, vaalit), clearly from Swedish and German.

  5. rq says

    You’re probably right -- an older form of saying ‘I want’ in Latvian is ‘es vēlos’. From the same infinitive as ‘I wish’.
    Oh, wanted also to mention: ‘vēlējums’ is a wish for someone else (to wish [good thing] on someone), like a nice thing you say on their birthday (‘May you enjoy many more to come!’, etc.), and the action word for that is ‘novēlēt’, where the ‘no-‘ prefix implies putting on, a downward sort of motion word. Putting a good wish on someone, in other words (doesn’t really work in a negative sense).
    So yes, I think all the wanting and selecting is related linguistically, and it’s no coincidence.

  6. blf says

    “It’s such a relief to get out of that bird puppet, I’d even eat a pea!
    “No, no, wait! Peanut! I meant peanut!! Peanut!!!”

  7. says

    Johnson catman:

    That second photo looks like he is smiling for the shot.

    She. Rats often look like that, and it can be misleading. Vala’s stare with hand on the peanut was checking me out to see if I had designs on that delicious tidbit.

  8. says

    Oh, it’s fine! It’s not as though you could see her lack of enormous rat balls! :D I often forget to mention boy or girl, and I doubt the rats care much.

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