Z (#atozchallenge)

So, here we are at the end of the A to Z Challenge for 2015, and at the end of the alphabet with the letter Z, known as “zed” in much of the rest of world.

Z is the name of a 1969 French Algerian movie starring Yves Montand and Irene Papas, directed by the Greek director Costa-Gavras, music by Mikis Theodorakis, adapted from the novel of the same name by Vasilis Vasilikos. IMDb’s logline says “Following the murder of a prominent leftist, an investigator tries to uncover the truth while government officials attempt to cover up their roles.” The whole movie is available on YouTube with English subtitles, broken into 13 pieces. I had a hard time following it, even with the subtitles; maybe you’ll have better luck. Roger Ebert, who had started at the Chicago Sun-Times not long before, proclaimed it the best movie of 1969.


Z, especially three Z’s over the figure of a person lying in bed or with his head on a desk, is a way of indicating that the person is asleep. There might be more than three Z’s, indicating that the person is deep asleep. You might also see a string of Z’s that indicates a pesky flying insect is bothering the hero of a comic.


Remember the old telephone directories? People would go out of their way to be listed either first or last in the phone book. To get listed first, you would precede your name by a string of A’s, as in AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHolton, and to get it listed last, you would have yourself listed as a person whose last name started with a string of Z’s. For years, the last person listed in the Chicago White Pages directory was a man who went by the name of Zeke Zzzzypt. He held the distinction for several years, until Zach Zzzzyzzzzy came along.

Well, that does it for me for this year’s A to Z Challenge. I’ve enjoyed myself tremendously. This was, as I think I mentioned, my first year as a co-host for the Challenge, and I want to thank Arlee and Alex and all the other co-hosts for letting me come in and play with them. I’d also like to thank my minions for the fine job they did checking the blogs that were assigned to me, and for being good people.

And, this wouldn’t be one of the coolest challenges on the entire Internet if it weren’t for people like you, who did as I did and posted 26 entries this month, starting with A on the 1st and ending with Z on the 30th, and who came by and visited and made some excellent comments that made me laugh and made me think. I hope that you will continue to visit me here at The Sound of One Hand Typing or on the simulcast blog, The Sound of One Hand Typing FM. I post at least once a day, and as you might have noticed, I have a few regular features here. Thanks for your support!


Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

40 thoughts on “Z (#atozchallenge)”

  1. Never knew people tried to be the first or the last in the phone book, always just assumed we had no choice in where we appeared, as the alphabet took care of that. I think this is year 4 or maybe 5 for me, can’t remember.


    1. It was more typically used by businesses in the Yellow Pages, where they’d want to be first in the category, e.g. exterminators. They figured people would be more apt to call them first.


  2. Hi John – I know the A-Z challenge is a great way to meet new blogging friends and find out new information .. I have to say I’m not sure I’d see the benefits of being last or first in the telephone directory – especially as a business with names like those … and Roger Ebert had a very good eye for film … and I’d like to see Z – but not now!! Cheers Hilary


    1. I think the first or last thing is just a matter of “bragging rights,” if nothing else. It’s been rendered pretty much obsolete since the phone books have been replaced by online directories. But it was a big deal forty years ago.

      Hope you had a good time and made lots of friends!


  3. Thanks for dropping by and offering encouragement. Must be very time consuming being one of the hosts. As a first timer I’ve had great fun and hope to be back next year. I think I’ll give the film a miss I’d definitely be sending out zzzzzzzs


    1. I hope you do join us again next year. This has been a lot of fun! Don’t forget the Reflections post, if you’re up for that.

      Movies with subtitles can really wear you out, can’t they?


  4. I grabbed a few Zs (15-minutes worth to be exact) this afternoon. That was enough to refuel me to get some much needed things done. Congrats on your first year as co-host! This is a fun blogging challenge. I’ll see you tomorrow for BoTB, I hope!


  5. J here, stopping by from the #atozchallenge – where I am part of Arlee’s A to Z Ambassador Team.
    Welcome to “Z-day”! (Time to watch the iZombie television series?)
    Hope to see you at the after party. I’m looking forward to when the Reflections Linky List opens on Monday May 4th.
    That’s funny about the phone books.
    -J @JLenniDorner


  6. Hey John. Here we are at the end of the road…but the beginning for many of us with all the new blogs we’ve discovered and the new friends we met along the way. Thanks for all your support and for the great job you’ve done in co-hosting! I like your Z post: never heard of anyone listing their names with multiple z’s in the phone book: fascinating! If I can find an old phone book around here (doubtful) I’ll have to take a look. Thanks for all your help in getting us to the finish line. Your support has been greatly appreciated! I’ll be visiting your blog beyond the A-Z…Be seeing you soon!
    Michele at Angels Bark


    1. I’ve added you to Feedly, and as I mentioned before, ince you’re in, you never get out. HAHAHAHAHA! Seriously, it has been good meeting you, and I look forward to many more misadventures…

      Liked by 1 person

  7. You’ve been a great team player, John. Appreciate all the effort you put into Co-hosting.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Join us on May 4 with your post of Reflections about this year’s A to Z.
    Tossing It Out


  8. Congrats on making it to the end, and doing it all as a co-host! A tall order. I’m looking forward to continue reading your features in the coming months. 🙂


  9. I’m in a daze with post-challenge giddiness and I accidentally posted my response to the first part of this post over on Being Retro. Never mind. Here’s what I said:

    It’s interesting how often movie critics find things to love in movies that leave the rest of us perplexed. I don’t mean that in a snarky way–I think it makes perfect sense that someone who’s studied film and watched a bazillion movies might be able see and appreciate things that aren’t immediately obvious to me. It does make me want to go back and watch again, though, to see what escaped me.

    I’m looking forward to connecting again in May–after we’ve all had that hard-earned sleep. 🙂


    1. In my case, no rest for the wicked. I blog daily… XD

      I do plan on watching all of “Z” at some point, when I have the time to dedicate to it. As disturbing as it might be, it looks like the kind of story I like.


  10. Well, I thought I put a comment, but it disappeared some how when I went to follow you. Well, lets see if I can remember. I like your Post, and this is my first time doing the A to Z challenge. I enjoyed myself immensely. I made sure I met new people every day at least four or five, but today is the last day… so my new friend. Have a great weekend and it was very nice to meet you. HUGS!!!!


    1. I can see where it would. It’s violent at the beginning, and some of the early dialogue is frightening. I’ve just seen the trailer and a few minutes of the beginning. Disturbing stuff.


  11. That was a fun “ZZZ” post. 🙂 Congratulations on a successful challenge! We say Zed here in Canada, but because of our proximity to the U.S. and watching so many American movies and TV shows, Zee is becoming more commonplace. I remember that movie with Yves Montand from many years ago, but not the particulars. See you around the Blogosphere!


    1. I’ll probably watch “Z” at some point, when I have the time and the patience to read the subtitles. I looked for the book; there are a couple of copies at Amazon from other vendors, but it’s pretty hard to find otherwise.

      I’m glad you liked this post!


  12. Hey John! I am just blitzing through for the A-to-Z Roadshow. I really enjoyed reading your posts for the challenge. They were inspirational and informational! I did the challenge over at Promptly Written. This blog, The Rattling Bones, is my new one. I am now following you and look forward to your posts. See you next April! ~Lori~


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