Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

Examples of funny and/or annoying mississpellings, and other grammatical errors

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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#101  Postby don't get me started » Mar 04, 2019 10:46 am

Thank you Scot and Fallible. :cheers:

I'm always interested to find out how things are done in other languages. Even though I bang on about Japanese a lot, some of the languages close to English can throw up surprises in the way they describe reality.

I know that 'Grammar' (with a capital G) is often thought to be this big, complex thing with specialist language like 'predicate' and 'subjunctive' and 'bound morpheme' bandied about. This kind of thing isn't that interesting for me.
I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#102  Postby Hermit » Mar 04, 2019 10:53 am

don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#103  Postby don't get me started » Mar 04, 2019 11:31 am

Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.


Hmm...very interesting. From my reading, I was of the mind that there exists a notional distinction between the two with 'fahren' being used for wheeled transport in general and driving in particular, and 'gehen' for movement on foot. Walking and driving are sub-categories of 'go' in English. I was under the impression that spazieren and laufen were subcategories of 'gehen' and 'fliegen was a sub-category of 'fahren'.

(It has been over 20 years since I studied German with any kind of seriousness. I often speak German with some co-workers, but I think they are pretty indulgent of the injuries done to the language of Goethe and Schiller by myself! :lol: )

If the distinction is only notional and German speakers 'in the wild' (as it were) are not that rigorous about the distinction, it wouldn't surprise me too much. Language in use is always a bit more fractal-edged than dictionary compilers and grammar book writers would have us believe.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#104  Postby Scot Dutchy » Mar 04, 2019 11:37 am

We use 'lopen' and 'wandelen' for walking. Lopen is purposeful and wandelen is just walking like so many office workers do at lunch time. 'Even wandelen'.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#105  Postby Evolving » Mar 04, 2019 12:04 pm

Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.


I disagree.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#106  Postby Hermit » Mar 04, 2019 12:09 pm

don't get me started wrote:If the distinction is only notional and German speakers 'in the wild' (as it were) are not that rigorous about the distinction, it wouldn't surprise me too much.

Isn't language use (speakers 'in the wild') what we are talking about?
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#107  Postby Fallible » Mar 04, 2019 12:11 pm

Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.


I disagree.


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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#108  Postby Hermit » Mar 04, 2019 12:12 pm

Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.

I disagree.

That's OK. You may be right in your disagreement. My native language is German, but I've spent only just under 16 years of my life in Germany, and that was a long time ago.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#109  Postby don't get me started » Mar 04, 2019 12:21 pm

Hermit wrote:
Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.

I disagree.

That's OK. You may be right in your disagreement. My native language is German, but I've spent only just under 16 years of my life in Germany, and that was a long time ago.


I hear you Hermit. I have lived approximately half of my life outside the UK now and I sometimes wonder about my intuitions regarding all things British. Even though my job requires me to be on the ball when it comes to the English language, I sometimes catch myself thinking 'Is that right?'
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#110  Postby The_Piper » Mar 04, 2019 1:09 pm

Scot Dutchy wrote:In Dutch medicine is drunk or taken but never eaten.

I suspect I was being unintentionally pedantic, and some of the people who say "eating aspirin"'s say it like that because it also comes in chewable form. I've never heard anyone say that they ate their asthma pill, for instance. I'll take note now, to how people refer to consuming other chewable medicines/remedies.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#111  Postby Evolving » Mar 04, 2019 2:22 pm

Fallible wrote:
Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.


I disagree.


You what????


Sorry, my English is not so good. I meant to say I am disagreeable.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#112  Postby surreptitious57 » Mar 04, 2019 3:11 pm


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#113  Postby surreptitious57 » Mar 04, 2019 3:12 pm


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#114  Postby Evolving » Mar 04, 2019 3:37 pm

Hermit wrote:
Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
don't get me started wrote:I find myself interested more in the kinds of things we have been discussing here like 'eat/dink/take' or other small things like Gehen/ Fahren in German and the parallels in Russian Идти/Ехать which differentiate going by foot or going by transport, something English doesn't really bother about.

German speakers don't bother about the distinction between gehen and fahren any more than English speakers bother about the distinction between going and driving. At least not in my experience.

I disagree.

That's OK. You may be right in your disagreement. My native language is German, but I've spent only just under 16 years of my life in Germany, and that was a long time ago.


That’s similar to me and English. Basically we cancel each other out. :)
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#115  Postby romansh » Mar 04, 2019 4:50 pm

Evolving wrote:
Hermit wrote:
That's OK. You may be right in your disagreement. My native language is German, but I've spent only just under 16 years of my life in Germany, and that was a long time ago.


That’s similar to me and English. Basically we cancel each other out. :)

Wow my first language was Latvian. But for the last 32years I have spent in English speaking Canada, but prior to that I lived for twenty six years in England. That sort of cancelled out too.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#116  Postby don't get me started » Mar 05, 2019 12:24 am

Romansch, I don't get to interact with many speakers of Latvian. I'm wondering if you have any insights into ways things are done differently in that language to the way they are done in English (the 'canceling out' process notwithstanding :) )

So, onto another aspect of English usage which falls into the 'non-straight lumber products' category and where the American usage seems to differ from the UK usage.

This concerns the verbs of giving and receiving. The verb 'give' in English encodes a schema where a person 'A' is in possession of some item. And by a purposeful action he/she causes that item to come into the possession of another person (let's call them person'B'.)
So far so good. But, if we switch frames and focus on person 'B' then there are a number of options for the schema as seen from their (B's) perspective. We could say that person B received the item. This states that B came into possession of an item through the purposeful action of another person (A).

However, we can also say that 'B got the item from A, encoding the same schema.
But the word 'get' also encodes the situation where B's purposeful action caused him/her to come into possession of an item, without the involvement of any other person. 'He went home and got his gun'.

(Funnily enough, there is the fixed expression 'give and take' which encodes reciprocity, but the verb 'take' encodes B coming into possession of an item, without any agency by A, and possibly even in conflict with A. 'The thieves took the car during the night'. )

Now, many years ago, I was working in a small hotel in the UK and when we had American guests it was common for them to peruse the menu and then say something like 'Can I get the full English breakfast?'* For me and my co-workers this struck us as unusual, as we perceived the request, in strict terms, as 'Can I go to the kitchen and help myself to a full English breakfast?'
For us Brits, the use of 'get' in this case seemed to prioritize the 'come into possession of an item through my own purposeful action' meaning of 'get' rather than the 'come into possession of an item through the purposeful actions of another person' meaning ( as in 'I got a new bicycle for my birthday'.)

*(Note, American guests often did not ask for a 'full English breakfast and leave it at that. Following the way that ordering seems to be done in America, they sought to maximize their agency in the ordering process by asking to change or substitute some item.. 'Can I skip the sausage and get double bacon instead? :roll: ) :) :) We got (!) used to it.

Of course, I couldn't finish off without a reference to Japanese. The verbs of giving and receiving/taking/getting are encoded for status in Japanese. So, while in English I can say 'The Queen gave the soldier a medal' and 'The child gave the Queen a posy', using the same word 'give', in Japanese one would have to vary the verb. Transfer from a lower person (kohei) to a senior person (sempai) is one set of verbs but transfer from a higher person to a lower person is encoded with another set of verbs. This is from the giver's point of view. From the receiver's point of view, you can encode the action with emphasis on respect to the others high status, or your own humble status, using yet another set of verbs. Not surprisingly, this is one of the things that speakers of English and other European languages really struggle with. The verbs can combine with other verbs such as 'buy' to encode status orientation along the lines of 'I was gratefully in receipt of the item due to the buying kindness of the honorable A-san' or emphasizing your own humility, ' A-san bestowed the bought item on humble and unworthy me'

Confusion abounds, you may be sure, especially as Japanese often omits actually mentioning the person and leaves it to context for the listener to work out who got what from whom... :roll:

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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#117  Postby Evolving » Mar 05, 2019 2:53 am

A curious feature of Luxembourgish, which is basically a kind of German: we use the verb „to give“ („ginn“) to form the passive voice, and also to mean „become“.

De Patient gëtt mam Häerz operéiert: the patient is being (or is to be) operated upon on his heart.

Si wëllt Lëtzebuergerin ginn: she wants to become a Luxembourger (citizen).

The only difference (that I can think of) is in the auxiliary verb: „sinn“ (to be) if „ginn“ is used for the passive voice or to mean „become“, „hunn“ (to have) if it means „to give“. Si ass Lëtzebuergerin ginn. Si huet mir e gudde Rot ginn. (She has become a Luxembourger; she has given me some good advice.)
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#118  Postby The_Piper » Mar 10, 2019 12:33 am

'the only thing that needs fixed is the catilatic converter for it builds up presser and you lose power." :doh:
The van is from Texas, the ad writer is too, presumably. Needs fixed. :lol:
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#119  Postby laklak » Mar 10, 2019 2:24 am

It's not 'anchors away", it's "anchors aweigh". And it does not mean to drop anchor.
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Re: Adventures in the English language; AkaThe YGS thread

#120  Postby The_Piper » Mar 10, 2019 3:16 am

laklak wrote:It's not 'anchors away", it's "anchors aweigh". And it does not mean to drop anchor.

Does it mean someone needs to go on a diet? :shifty:
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