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I had a considerable amount of dental work done this morning that
left me with a completely numb lower lip and an upper lip whose left
half was also numb.  Talking to a few people left me thinking about
the phonology (in English, at least) of numbness.

I found that I was systematically substituting [b] for /v/, [p] for /f/,
[d_t] for /D/, [t_t] for /T/, and [B] for /w/ (but not in /gw/ and /kw/).
The first two of these can be chalked up to inability, but the other
three are apparently rooted in a desire to keep the numb lip from being
touched by the not-numb tongue, which found the contact disturbing.

The anaesthetic has mostly worn off now, to be replaced by acetominaphen/
paracetamol, and all seems to be well, thanks.

--
MEET US AT POINT ORANGE AT MIDNIGHT BRING YOUR DUCK OR PREPARE TO FACE WUGGUMS
John Cowan   http://www.reutershealth.com   [log in to unmask]