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I joined the facebook group Omniglot Fan Club in late 2014. A few months after I joined, a guy joined the group and immediately started making post after post telling us all about his language and how it was the source and progenitor of all the languages in the world. We showed him that the similarities he was pointing out were because his language was related to the languages in his examples.

He wasn’t convinced, but the admins of the group were convinced of one thing, that he was spamming the group with multiple threads and he was banned. But he inspired many people in the group to continue the silliness and the next day, the group was in complete chaos with people trying to write the most bizarre things they could.

After a week of this, the admins got a bit annoyed and told us to knock it off. But a lot of us were having a lot of fun, so I decided to make a group that was dedicated to language silliness called “Developing the Atlantean Conlang” (I had previously suggested that all languages come from Atlantean, to counter the assertions of the guy who had originally asserted that his language was the source of all languages).

I came up with a character, Steve the vagabond, and named him after the guy who started all the trouble in Omniglot. “the Vagabond” part was part of the idea of the character. In short, he was part of a colony in the outskirts of Atlantean territory that sought independence. He led many raids against Atlantean positions, and became know as “the Vagabond” by the Atlanteans.

The banner on the page used to be a picture of Steve with “Atlantean is the mother of language” on the right side. Cheesecake was a symbol of the greed and decadence of the Atlanteans since it was a dessert and made from dairy. The dairy farms in Steve’s homeland were mostly run by Atlanteans who had colonised his country. He vowed to fight against tyranny and that is why the cheesecake is crossed out on the banner

Once the conlanging group became established it became clear that there should also be a group for fun language stuff. I called it Silly Linguistics because of all the silly language and linguistics talk that spawned the idea for Steve the vagabond. This whole thing was started because someone through some rather silly linguistics had triggered a mass outflowing of silly linguistics from the members of Omniglot, and I wanted to build the fictional world the Atlanteans lived on around this idea. I could think of no better way to honour the original Steve than to add the honorary title “and silly linguist” to our famous “Steve the Vagabond”.