Wednesday, April 18, 2007

'Ismail Ax' Sparks Web Search 'Frenzy'

The Aussie news paper The Age is reporting that the phrase "Ismail Ax" has sparked a web search "frenzy."

No crap. My post on it took my daily average hits from 60 to 1200, with 13,000 hits yesterday alone and 1,000 in the last hour.

Meanwhile, Allah over at Hot Air notes that we may have all been on a wild goose chase, since a WaPo story tomorrow spells it "Ismale Ax."

Personally, I'm amazed at how many theories bloggers have been able to dig up in a day.

We have Rutheford's original theory that it was Islam related, which pissed a lot of people off. In fact, the story mentioned the theory:

As for the term's meaning, one popular theory spreading across the web comes from a story in the Koran, the holy book of Islam, about Ibrahim and his son, Ismail. This theory picked up speed because many bloggers wondered if the actions at Virginia Tech could be related to terrorism.

In Islam, Ibrahim is known as the father of the prophets and, upset that people in his hometown still worshiped idols and not Allah, he smashed all but one statue in a local temple with an ax. Ibrahim's son is Ismail, who also became a prophet. Ibrahim is Arabic for Abraham, who plays a significant role in Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

Then there's my current theory of choice, that it was his nickname, also mentioned in my original post (the update).

There's the theory that it came from the book The Prairie. The killer was an English major. Then a variant on that and part of my nickname theory, that it came from the book Ishmael.

Of course, all of this could be moot since the spelling may have been off. Of course, as we saw from the killer's disturbing writings, he wasn't very good with the English language.