Paku-Paku Pacman


I'm sure everybody but me knew this but until just a few minutes ago I didn't know the origin of the name Pac−Man. My friend Jun just got this Namco TV Games thingy and brought it over to show me and as she was playing it occured to me that paku−paku is the sound of munching something in Japanese. Specifically it's the sound of taking a quick bite out of something and so Pac−Man would be a logical name in Japanese for a character that goes around gobbling up or paku−paku ing around eating stuff.

In the same way, the Japanese snack, Pocky, has a similar origin. Note that Pocky is pronouced Poe Key where Poe rhymes with Edgar Allen Poe or Bow as in Bow and Arrow and Key is like the thing you lock a door with. It is NOT pock−ee like chicken pox.

Anyway, poki in Japanese is the sound of snapping a small stick (ポキっとする), hence, naming a snack that is a small stick that you break, Pocky would be an obvious name.

I'm sure there are others I haven't noticed yet. I'll have to keep my eyes open next time I'm in the combini. 😊