I have a question about my English Language & Usage Stack Exchange post: Mnemonics for Months' Series

I put my question under "mnemonics" tag and it got closed for being opinion based which for this community and particularly for mnemonics tab is unjust. Mnemonics questions (mostly) ought to be of this type. Please refer to this question which did not get closed:

Mnemonic for parallel

The difference between my question and that question is that of difficulty primarily. While the "Parallel" question seems to have got answers pretty quickly and lots, the need then might not have been felt to close it while it was not so in my case. It takes time and effort to create a mnemonic that is good. There is usage involved with respect to vocabulary and sentence formation where one needs to keep the words other than the necessary ones at a minimum.

To remember the names of the planets:

  • From Wikipedia: "Men Very Easily Make Jugs Serve Useful Needs, Perhaps"
  • How I learnt: "My Very Elegant Mother Just Served Us Nine Peanuts"

Here, one may argue that they are opinion based, but that's how mnemonics are. Focusing solely on "opinion" aspect, in my view will deal great unjust to this community and especially to the mnemonics tag. Frankly, I love mnemonics and for just about anything I create them and joined this community primarily to get help on the same.

Do you think that at least for mnemonics the focus should be shifted from opinion to usage?

If not, is there some Stack Exchange site where I can ask such questions, or should I ask it somewhere else altogether?

  • 1
    Questions about mnemonics in a particular language -might- be suitable for ELU or an SE site, but that question does not. You're asking for writing advice? Or figuring out what a good mnemonic should be? I don't know, but maybe you should try Reddit or Quora?
    – Mitch
    Jun 1 at 14:52
  • 1
    "Parallel", "onomatopoeia" are words notorious for their spelling difficulties. There are a host of other words users also find challenging: e.g unnecessary and guarantee Yet these last three questions were all closed for being primarily opinion based despite being common words. Why would anyone want to know the "answer" to your question? Who would it be useful to?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 3 at 13:09
  • 2
    I’m voting to close this question because the user should first familiarise themself with the site and its culture before complaining about one question of theirs being closed.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 3 at 13:12
  • I have great difficulty remembering mnemonics. I can remember the MVEMJSUNP one by recalling the names of the planets, noting which letters they begin with, and then with luck I'll remember "Men very easily, um ..." and no, it's gone. Jun 9 at 20:25
  • @PrimeMover you're not making a point, I think. If mnemonics aren't helpful to you then you shouldn't say that anyone can do without them thus. Myself included and many find mnemonics very helpful. That's true for most people and thus mnemonics even exist. Jun 9 at 20:32
  • @PrimeMover this is an abnormal request but could you please downvote my this post: math.stackexchange.com/questions/4462044/… I'm asking you as when I asked someone else, it irked them to extent they got offended and did the opposite Jun 9 at 20:34
  • @InanimateBeing Well okay, but dunno why ... job done Jun 9 at 20:40
  • @PrimeMover Thanks you very much, you have my gratitude. Jun 9 at 20:43
  • @InanimateBeing For other people they may work, but I have memories of losing ground at school because I could never remember the stupid mnemonics when I could rattle off the info without them. Fun and all that it is to make them up, they are usually so contrived as to be more difficult to remember than the source material. Jun 9 at 20:43
  • Wow! @PrimeMover then you should consider yourself blessed as I generally have to keep on devising these mnemonics to learn one thing or the other. That's also one of the primary reasons I joined this community for as I sometimes lack the vocab or the sentence formation skill for doing so. Jun 9 at 20:45

1 Answer 1


The site is English Language and Usage.

Language is about the language itself: etymologies, synonyms, what particular objects are called and similar stuff.

Usage is how English is used: grammar, punctuation, word order etc.

Mnemonics don't fit either class.

However, where a particular mnemonic might be useful to others, then even off-topic questions can be accommodated. Examples might include how to remember the order of the planets, colours of the rainbow, possibly presidents of America or monarchs of England. Unfortunately we no longer have a "too localised" close reason, but I would have put your esoteric month-order in that category.

Note that the actual close reason was not "opinion-based", although a couple of people did choose that. Others wrote in their own reasons, "This seems to be more of a puzzle than an English language matter"; "I'm voting to close this question because it’s not about the English language"; "Not suitable for this site."

  • "Puzzle" is a very broad term and just about any mnemonic can be seen a puzzle too. Though, in my case it may seem more like one due to the "rules" that I have mentioned as pointed by many. I have removed those "rules" now so people can give it a good try. If this is a good enough reason, can you help lift the ban or do you think it may get lifted? Jun 1 at 14:30
  • 4
    No. Puzzles which do not rely on the vagaries of English are off-topic, and your series is still so esoteric as to be useful only to you. It's still "too localised".
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Jun 1 at 14:40
  • Thanks for letting me know, I have updated my question again and now I hope it resolves the problem of "too localised". My problem should be useful now to everyone. I hope this should open it now. Can you help in lifting the ban? Jun 1 at 14:49
  • 3
    I can't, I'm afraid. I still think the series is too esoteric. Others may disagree, of course: three reopen votes will reopen the question, and your question here and subsequent edit may convince them.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Jun 1 at 18:03
  • Hmm, some discussion is taking place on the question still but the ban will discourage a lot many and people will have to write their answers in comments if any. Would be helpful if you understand my predicament and cast your reopen vote, hope someone else will take note and understand too? Will you? Jun 1 at 18:49

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