questionswhy do we call it a tuna fish sandwich?


If you think about other types of fish you'll notice a trend Cat, Lion, Angel, Clown Sword, etc. Perhaps this has something to do with it. Just as an identifier.


@gideonfrost: All those that you listed could be something other than a fish too so Fish is included to clarify:

Cat - Feline
Lion - Large Cat
Angel - Mythical Religious Character
Sword - A device used for slashing and stabbing

As far as I know, Tuna is only a fish and there are no other definitions for it. Perhaps something very obscure but not common.


I just say "tuna sandwich" or "tuna salad sandwich".


As far as PIN number. It gets me as well. However when I started thinking about it. PIN (The number you need to enter) and pin (the thing you poke people with) sound the same when spoken aloud. So I suppose at some point saying saying enter your PIN might have confused those people who had a sewing kit on them at the time of the transaction. A solution to this might have been to spell it out eg, "Please enter your P I N"


ATM machine is another that annoys me. There are a few more like that but I can't recall them right now. The tile flooring I manufacture at work has a T in the acronym which stands for tile, yet people will still tack on "tile" afterward.


It's because you can tune a piano, but you can't tuna fish.

That said, I often eat tuna sandwiches, but tuna fish seems to roll off the tongue better. Off the tongue into my belly, that is!

As to the question about the final letter in an acronym, there is a name for that: RAS syndrome ("redundant acronym syndrome syndrome"). A couple other common examples: ATM Machine, LCD Display.



Okay another hypothesis on tuna.

Beef in America has been widely known to come from cows for ages. The same goes with chicken, pork, and the recently retired bacon.

Now enter some hot shot investor with a plan to spread his tuna business across the globe. He reaches out to diners in the Midwest and offers them and exotic new food to sell to their customers.

Now fast forward to a diner in a small town in Kansas

Waitress: "Our special of the day is a Tuna Sandwich"
Patron: "I don't know what the hell tuna is, give me a Chicken Sandwich."

After weeks of failed tuna sales our plucky young waitress comes up with a plan

Waitress "Our special today is a Tuna Fish Sandwich"
Patro: (I love fish) "I'll have one!"



@curtise: I don't use your example of LCD Display. It's always either an LCD Monitor or an LCD TV. If it's the device in a small camera, phone, or tablet, I refer to those as LCD Screens.


I always questioned why the drive up ATM's have braille on them.......


It's like saying "NIC card." Or "hot water heater"

Annoys me a bit but it is considered socially unacceptable to kill people for things like this.


@baqui63: The NIC Card and Hot Water Heater reminds me of a couple stories.

First, the NIC Card. One day my boss called me into his office and asked me what derogatory term that was and what it meant specifically. The associate that used the term was going to get into trouble for using a racial slur but once I explained that NIC was for Network Interface Card, he decided to drop any potential charges against the employee.

Then the Hot Water Heater. This was when I talked to external customers. One called me and said that he speaks 7 different languages and English was the most difficult for him to learn. He said, "For example, what is a Hot Water Heater? If the water is already hot, why do you need to heat it? It should be called a cold water heater." I couldn't agree more. I've mentioned this to friends and they say it's technically just called a water heater but that was still funny.


@coondogg97: I know about the Braille on ATM's. It's easier to manufacturer one machine that can be used in all locations instead of designing a specific one just for the drive-thru. So, all are manufactured with the Braille and used everywhere regardless if it's the drive-thru or at a branch.


Yup. So why do people who eat "tuna fish" sandwiches and use "ATM Machines" swear they ate a Kiwi for dessert? The last time I checked , eating either version of a Kiwi (human or bird) was illegal, though Chinese gooseberries (kiwifruit) make a nice (legal, less filling) dessert.



My boss is in charge of the Network Infrastructure Group and in our Active Directory, the (AD) group name is the group's acronym. He refuses to change it, though to my knowledge there have been no complaints.

Funny thing, the same guy raised a stink when one of the (cute, IMHO) Chinese women in our department named her computer asian-qt a few years back.

(He is neither asian nor afro-american.)


@baqui63: i love when other professionals call it a "NIC card"


Grinning here. This thread reminds me of George Carlin and Steven Wright. Nothing new to add as I am blanking at the moment.


@gideonfrost: Chicken, pork and bacon come from cows also? I feel misled! ;)


Where I grew up, it's a "tuner sandwich." Not always clear whether one is eating fish or the piano repairman...


I always figured it had something to do with the extinction of the Tuna Bird, making the Fish name clarifier somewhat unnecessary.