Fredericton — Dictionary.com defines duality as “the state or quality of being 2 or in 2 parts; a dichotomy.” In New Brunswick, an alternative definition could be “something that really bothers Fredericton Mayor Brad Woodside.” Last week on Twitter he expressed his outrage about duality in our province. So, when the mayor charged city hall civil servants with brainstorming cost-saving solutions for municipal government, they embarked upon a witch hunt for redundancies.
“Think about what is duality,” said a city hall employee who wished to remain anonymous. “It’s duplication of services. One too many of something. They’re both doing a similar job that should only take one of them to do. We were asked to come up with ideas to save the city money; we thought, ‘Hey, the mayor hates duality,’ so let’s start with that.”
The Manatee has learned that city hall staff have flagged 2 key areas in which duality exists: repeat letters in Brad Woodside’s name, and the shocking revelation that Fredericton employs 2 mayors, one of whom is not recognized by the title of “mayor” but instead by the modest moniker of “secretary.”
“There are a lot of duplicate letters in Brad Woodside,” said another anonymous city hall employee. “Three D’s, in total. Remove one of those and you’re still looking a duality scenario. Then there’s those two O’s that are side by side. Only one should be necessary — obviously the second isn’t working as hard as the first. We proposed shortening the mayor’s name to Brad Wosie.”
When asked exactly how eliminating letters in the mayor’s name would save money, we were told, “The public has no idea how many times the mayor’s name gets typed in one day. By the other mayor, Mrs. Secretary, by publicists, social media coordinators, the list goes on and on. Dropping even a few letters will speed things up, increase our typists’ words-per-minute. It also conserves ink and that saves a surprising amount of money. When a printer runs out of ink, you don’t buy a new ink cartridge, you buy a new printer. That gets costly. For every character we don’t print, we save. In New Brunswick in 2015, every little bit counts.”
“Biletteralism I understand,” said Wosie. “Three D’s. That does gets annoying to type. Duality though, makes no sense. I think all the D’s should stay but one of the O’s should go. Then I’d be ‘Brad Wodside.’ I could live with being, Brad Wodside.”
The Urban Dictionary defines biletteralism as “when the same letter appears more than once in the same word, but not in succession.” If the duplicate letters are beside each other, that is duality, not biletteralism.
However, UNBSJ professor of Linguistics Virginia Hill said that 2 of the D’s need to go so that there will be no confusion between biletteralism and duality. “That’s the reality we’re facing here in New Brunswick. It doesn’t matter if the duplicate letters are beside each other or not,” she explained. “If 2 of the same letter appear in the same word, New Brunswickers will be confused. The D’s in Woodside have to go — it only makes sense. You can’t drop the D from ‘Brad’ because that would make the mayor’s first name ‘Bra,’ and no one wants that.”
Regarding the issue of the second mayor, Wosie maintained radio silence, though his secretary issued the following statement on his behalf: “Officially, there is only one mayor of Fredericton. But if I did endorse duality, it would be to benefit me, so my secretary would do all my work. In essence, she would be the actual mayor. We’ll never know because the mayor says duality is off the table. Er, I mean, I say it‘s off the table. Me, Mayor Wosie. I mean, Woodside. The real mayor.”