Any help is appreciated.
This seems to answer your question:
Within a string, certain sequences have special meaning unless the NO_BACKSLASH_ESCAPES SQL mode is enabled. Each of these sequences begins with a backslash (\), known as the escape character. MySQL recognizes the escape sequences shown in Table 10.1, “Special Character Escape Sequences”. For all other escape sequences, backslash is ignored. That is, the escaped character is interpreted as if it was not escaped. For example, \x is just x.
Table 10.1 Special Character Escape Sequences Escape Sequence Character Represented by Sequence \0 An ASCII NUL (X'00') character \' A single quote (') character \" A double quote (") character \b A backspace character \n A newline (linefeed) character \r A carriage return character \t A tab character \Z ASCII 26 (Control+Z); see note following the table \\ A backslash (\) character \% A % character; see note following the table \_ A _ character; see note following the table
eg \i has no special meaning ...