Archive for the ‘english’ Category

Guise, I ‘m a generally irritable and mercurial person. However, I try to be fair (not really) and don’t make scenes when people disagree with me although I’m obviously totally right all the time (actually, it’s just laziness). Nevertheless, there are several pet-peeves and other things that will get your comment deleted wherever I can delete things:

1) Leaving a racist comment without your real name/recognizable and characteristic internet alias (and I mean you, white supremacist scumbagshit from this post. In fact, I haven’t deleted your comment, but rather sent it to the Comment Limbo, so if you’re reading this and wanna come back and sign it with your real name this time I’m totally gonna publish it, darling. Send me your FB profile so I can verify.

By which I mean, racist shitfaced fuckwads like you should be shamed publicly)

2) Ruining my mood

3) Insisting that certain languages/dialects are just better than others. In fact, my stance on this issue has been briefly summed up here and is absolutely non-negotiable.

4) Using the word “teabonics”

So if you think you’d like your local old media thingy to publish something like that:

British English More Natural, Scientists Say

A recent survey analysis carried out by a team of evolutionary psychologists at LSE suggests that British English might be more intuitive and more natural, and thus easier for human brains to learn. “It’s very likely that British English, a dialect of English that has been around for a very long time,” so says the team leader Hitoshi Kanazawa, “and yet survived until today, and is also used internationally and widely considered to be very easy to learn did not just survive by accident. We think that English, especially its British dialect, might be the language that is actually closest to the language used by our savannah ancestors thousands of years ago”.

90% of the responders of the LSE survey claimed that British English is the easiest language they have ever learned, with over 60% claiming it to be the only language they can speak fluently. “British English” was most frequently associated with such adjectives as “good”, “nice”, “pleasant”, “natural”, “poetic”, “educated”, and “high-brow”. The language most frequently associated with concepts such as “strange” and “uncivilised” was Polish, while the one responders classified as most “foreign” was Urdu.

(“English Dialects and Prototypicality”, Evolutionary Psycholinguistics 17/2011, Hitoshi Kanazawa, Stanley Binker, Richard J. Herrnstier. The survey was conducted on 900 white male British undergraduates)

(hurr hurr, sauce)

(ETA: this thing above about a survey is a parody of course *facepalm* I thought it was obvious, but yeah, it is eerily evocative of some evo-psy research, hurr hurr, so I get that it’s somehow *almost* like the real thing, but nonetheless, a parody. Not real. Don’t haaaaaaaaaaaaate)

you can as well save yourself the trouble and not comment at all, because I’m gonna be, like, a Cyberman to your London!civilian!person, and DELETE! everything and also seriously, I feel really energetic today, by which I mean, trigger-happy.

***

The dialect of English I was taught, when I was a very tiny Sendai, by a series of mostly interchangeable mostly middle-aged ladies with perfect RP (or a perfect imitation thereof) was invariably the British one.

This left a mark: I’d normally say torch, lift, football, pavement, trousers, lorry, rubbers, bonnet, and also tend to spell colour with an extra “u”. Hopefully, though, my pronunciation is not a perfect imitation of RP: one must always strive to surpass one’s teachers.

Once, an American prof from the American Lit department and I were waiting for the lift in Sendai, but he apparently felt the necessity of ascertaining my intentions towards the lift(1), because he asked

“Are you standing in the line?”

It took me 90 seconds of helpless blinking to establish that he meant  “queue”.

There are, however, exceptions:

1) A trunk is a trunk. “Boot” is a shoe.

2) The differences between stuff like “cake”, “cookie”, “biscuit” etc, are completely elusive to me. It is my utmost conviction that there should be less words for food. In fact, a good, thrifty, efficient language could just get away with bare necessities, like:

edible food, poisonous food, spicy food, coffee

I could seriously do without the rest.

3) When I was tiny, I read a book about teddy bears or something. An important part of the plot was one of the bears trying a jumper on. Unfortunately, the idea that wearing a jumper is something a bear from a children’s book would do persisted, and I switch between “sweater” and “jumper”, but probably say “sweater” most of the time.

4) “Plimsoll” is a word whose ridiculousness is only equal to that of “kaloryfer” and “palimpsest”. DNW.

The biggest hangup, of course, was getting over the instant visualisation of a guy in pants-pants, instead of a guy in trousers, when someone says “guy in pants”, which is something one has to do when one wants to stay sane on teh internets, which are teeming with AmE dialect speakers.

So there.

Any words (in any language, any dialect) you’ve ever had problems with?

(1) 責任を取りましたwwwww。

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1. If at 14 you believe you’re ready to have children, you are of course wrong.

However, if ten or even twenty years later you persist in your delusion  belief  that you were ready to have children at 14? You are totes not ready to have children still.

Hilary Mantel thinks you should be popping out children at 14, which is, like, absolutely not influenced by her being infertile and unhappy about it. Oh, I do realise it must be a terrible tragedy for her, but for some people? Getting pregnant at the age 14 is, too.

(Pity she’s such a douche, her books seem like something I could pick up when my brain needs several days in a semi-enjoyable stand-by mode)

***

2. How (Not) to Write About Africa. (Un?)surprisingly some of those boring, offensive, ridiculous, dehumanizing tropes still persist. Also, an audiovisual aid for those less willing to read (there’re no Morning Musume in there, I promise!):

***

3. NHK website about hikikomori (wiki on hikikomori). I just want to say, at first I snickered at the irony of NHK of all places having a website about hikikomori stuff, then I got sucked in and spent about two hours reading through the FAQ (STATISTICS!!!!!!!!11!1!!).

It’s in Japanese, though.

***

4. Shakesville post about rape culture. I just want to say, I’m sooooooo happy I don’t have to write it.

***

5. How to sell your snake oil thing, or any kind of woo, really. Should be read together with any of Orac’s excellent posts about woomeisters always blaming the patient.

***

6. I’ll freely and nonchalantly admit I only discovered it about a week ago: English without non-Germanic words, aka Uncleftish Beholding. I will also admit that my brain tells me to visualise “uncleftish” every time I hear/see the (non) word.

Suffering ensues.

***

7. An interesting article about the cancer that is killing vampire fiction like you could kill the cancer that is vampire fiction with a different cancer hurr durr Twilight and cultural appropriation. What it lacks is a mention of the problematic portrayal of Quileute in the books (ahahahahaha, BOOKS AHAHAHAHA) in the first place, but this can be easily found with the help of Google and some resourceful typing.

***

8. The crazy terrorist anti-tax guy who crashed into an IRS office is being white-washed by his daughter thus:

Asked whether she considered her father a hero, Stack’s adult daughter, Samantha Dawn Bell, said during a telephone interview broadcast Monday on ABC’s “Good Morning America”: “Yes. Because now maybe people will listen.” But she stressed that his actions were “inappropriate.”

The catch: the daughter lives in Norway. NORWAY! One would think a greedy sociopath tax protester could find a better place to live than Norway:

– The basic tax rate is 28 % of the net income. The social security contribution is 7,8 % of the gross income. Therefore, the total tax rate rarely exceeds 36 %. However, on gross income exceeding NOK 456.400 (relevant as of salary grade 60) a surtax (toppskatt) of 9 % is levied. On gross income exceeding NOK 741.700 (relevant as of salary grade 82) a surtax of 12 % is levied. (source)

Seriously.

(Btw, the income tax is not all the tax that an individual has to pay in Norway. There’s also the so-called wealth tax, so in many cases you’d have to pay much moar)

(Mmmm, taxes  <3)

***

9. I discovered Vox Day(1), the most odious person and at the same time the most pretentious cretin on the internets. Seriously. I expect to have time to make fun of him properly soon.

***

In other news, I’ve been hearing rumours about late (as in, in June) spring in Poland this year. I might have to reconsider my spring break plans.

Also, wisdom tooth is a whore.

(1) Bad pun is  bad, especially as “dei” is totes not pronounced like that.

Hah. So, Dan at Camels with Hammers has an awesome series of posts about gay gay gay gay gayness*, which you should check out if you’re interested in gay gayness and/or  religion 1 * 2 * 3 * 4 * 5 * 6 * . You can also read my very gay post about Leviticus.

(I simply love Leviticus. Whenever I’ve nothing better to do, and whenever I’m down, I just read it and think “well, at least it won’t ever get as bad as that, LOL”**)

However, the hilarity of the day is in the post about the wacky Anglican bishop, with whom we will not concern ourselves, as he’s a typically homophobic specimen of Xian clergy, and therefore, boriiiiiing. What is awesome, is the poor oppressed Christian in the comments:

Why is this so offensive to the homosexual community? If you want to be a part of the religion then you have to accept its doctrines. Or else youre simply not a part of the religion. Even the Devil believes in God, right? I dont get what the homosexual communities issue is. If you aim to change the religion then you’d might as well abandon it or create your own occult practice, because that is just as good as changing the one that is there. Im sorry that you feel unaccepted. But it is what it is. Accept the religion for what it is or dont accept it at all… why the religious intolerance? Is that not hypocritical of you? What are you accomplishing by mutilating a religion and its beliefs just so that you can be accepted into it? Would that help to validate you? Would it help you to feel better and sleep better at night? You might be able to force societies and laws to change, but you cannot force a religion. A religion is by definition spiritual, transcendental. God has spoken, right? The law-setter. No amount of petitioning will change Gods mind. If you dont accept that then you dont believe in the faith. What more is there for you to do?

Predictably, and hilariously enough, the guy’s nickname is Cogito Ergo Sum (BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA).

(Perhaps, this is why he hasn’t been posting on his blog — with whose mockery we will proceed below — recently. The not-thinking finally caught up with him and, puff, no more Cogito?)

(What is it with pretentious and dumb people, mostly wingnuts, who chose pretentious and ironically inaccurate nicknames like that? There’s a Polish wingnut online bookstore that’s called Księgarnia Ludzi Myślących, which means “The Bookstore of Thinking People” or some such. They sell stuff like this*** and this and this****. Haha, no)

Anyway, predictably enough, Dan swiftly mauled Cogito, and three months later I couldn’t help but dance a little triumphantly on his several-months old battered carcass.

(I have no idea how Dan manages to be so civil, though. I can’t. Wanted to add a couple of “you fuckwads” for a good measure, but there was no place. Damn. Maybe next time.)

(Note to self: also add more passive-aggressive smileys)

But I digress. The thing is, I’m always on the lookout for interesting blogs and websites that are worthy of my time. It stands to reason then that I would check out Cogito’s blog.

I wasn’t disappointed!

Oh, the hilarity!

First, we have a post about those mean people who use big words. How mean!

It often annoys me to hear people use big words that I don’t know. I know, I know… not to self-deprecate or anything, and certainly not to sound arrogant; I just have issues with people who choose to or habitually use larger words than commonly known.

Wellllllllll. I don’t think “deprecate” really means what you think it means (well, it is a possibility). Look it up! Also, “self-deprecating” is normally an adjective. Also, note how between the first sentence and second sentence “the words I don’t know” become “larger words than commonly known”. Haha, no.

(Also, his English is very awkward. I thought at first he was an ESL learner and wanted to lay off mocking him, but it seems from his posts he’s USian)

Then, right in the second paragraph:

I have a fairly descent vocabulary, myself; a rather large one in fact.

Um, did you mean “decent”? Look it up! Well, anyway, I thought it was a bit arseholish to laugh at people’s spelling, maybe he didn’t have the time, maybe he’s dysgraphic. But then, two lines further:

Further, I write with a much higher vocabulary than I speak. I’m pretty sure that most people are like me in this regard. If you’ve read any of my articles online, you would know the depth of the vocabulary I use.

HAHAHAHAHA PLEASE WRITE ME MOAR. And I’d sort of like to hear him speaking, now.

(Also, WordPress and most other blogging platforms have a nice little tool called “spellcheck”. This is not a big word for you, Cogito, I’d certainly hope.)

A few paragraphs down, we can read about the existential angst Cogito experiences every time some mean person uses a word he doesn’t understand.

When people use large words that I don’t understand I wonder to myself,

  • “Is this person testing my vocabulary? My intellect?”
  • “Is this person testing my pride and seeing if I will ask what the word means?”
  • “Are they trying to sound smarter than they are?”
  • “Does this person actually not think anything of it?”

Narf, narf. Personally, I’d go with option 4. My internet therapist credentials allow me to state a diagnosis of “look, jerk, this is what happens when you’re stupid, full of yourself, and paranoid about people proving you wrong”.

(Incidentally, what a normal****  gay person, like Sara*****, asks herself when she doesn’t understand a word is:

  • Where is my dictionary?*****)

Normally, people don’t spend that much time thinking whether their interlocutor will understand every word they say or not. They just speak the way they’re used to, duh*******. Also, how are you supposed to gauge what your interlocutor can or can’t understand when you don’t try to talk to them first? Are you supposed to think that every person without a formal education is just a nincompoop bum who doesn’t read books and so on? Are you supposed to think that every person wearing a certain sort of clothes is uneducated? Why? That’s classist, and also ignorant stereotyping.

Next,  we have this piece of utter and thorough brilliance that shines like the Sun (or the gospels):

Its my understanding that, for all intent and purpose, the Qu’ran is just another Book, another Word, and yet another “denominational” offshoot of Christianity.  Islam is as valid as, say, Judaism or Protestantism are; each have their place and association with Orthodox Catholicism.

Historically speaking, Islam came about several centuries after Christ and the birth of Catholicism.

OH WOW. First, why do you hate apostrophes? Second, it’s “for all intents and purposes”. Third, Judaism an offshoot of Christianity? Dude, Judaism had been around since long before Xianity wore a nappy and gurgled.

Not to mention? Catholicism is a concept much younger than Christianity itself, oops. Not to mention, trust me, Muhammad knew shit about Catholic dogmas when he wrote the Quran.

Anyway, what follows is a masterpiece of complete and utter ignorance. I had a laugh over it with my fourth and fifth coffee.

Let’s not mock him, though! He’s only bigoted when it comes to the gay gay gay gay gayyyyyyyys.

I am not well versed in the Qu’ran, but after the September 11th disaster and all the anti-Islamic chain mail floating around the internet, I felt compelled to purchase a copy of the Qu’ran.  I was a bit of an amateur theologian even then, but my immediate intention was to verify all of the atheist-writ, Christian-writ, and war-monger-write quotes that supported the bitterness and resentment of the Sep 11 attacks.  I also have a copy of the prophesies of Nostradamus for the same reasons.  I enjoy comparing religions, and if you are a ready of mine you would have read some of what I have to say, and you will likely read a lot more to come.

*Snort*. Amateur indeed. A hint: when you know nothing about something, just say so, instead of using, well, weasel words like  “an amateur (insert profession)”. It’s not cute. It’s just stupid.

I realize that Islam isn’t regarded as a denomination of Christianity. Both the Islamic and the Christian people essentially agree to that.  However, I have found that in  the Qu’ran there are many references to Christ, Christians, and the One True God – and they are spoken of in a positive light.  For all intent and purpose, the Christian God and Allah are one and the same god.  Its basically a proper pronoun, and we can expect some linguistic differences.

Um, not really. Or it depends,. As it happens, Jesus is a prophet in Quran, not god, so. SO MAYBE NOT. The stuff about Islam being a denomination of Xianity though, I sort of can’t make up my mind whether it’s more stupid or more offensive (HULLO, CULTURAL APPROPRIATION).

OK, it’s more offensive:

But the point is simple. The Qu’ran validates Christianity.  It is not an opposing religion, not in the slightest, its not really even a separate religion.  At least, not as the Islamic see it.

YEAH RIGHT.

And again, this is my interpretation based on my own first-hand observations.

Also known as “bullshit” and “anecdotal evidence”.

Anyone who wishes to contradict or disprove this, I welcome the evidence as I always do.  I welcome theologically-based evidence, in this case, since historical accounts and fanaticism never count as proof to anything of a theological nature.

This means actually “only what I say counts as evidence, counts, and I only say that the stuff I agree with counts, so there”.

What I mean is, anyone who is in a position to refute would have at least read the Qu’ran, or the necessary passages to support their claims, and therefore isn’t speaking from a bigoted heart.

Just like he admits that he didn’t finish reading Quran a few paragraphs before, but that doesn’t stop him from writing bullshit about it. SHINE ON YOU DARLING JUST SHINE ON.

There is no legitimate reason why Christians, in particular, should be afraid of Islam or see it as a separate entity.  In many ways, as I see it, Islam should be adopted into Christianity as a denomination.  In fact, I would even argue that the Qu’ran should be adopted as yet another Book, to be integrated into the Biblical scriptures in much the same way that the Apocrypha or Dead Sea Scrolls should be.

YOUR BIOLOGICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL THEOLOGICAL DISTINCTIVENESS WILL BE ADDED TO OUR OWN. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE, RESISTANCE IS FUTILE. Thus spoke the Christian Borg!

Awesome!

From his post about education, one can gather that his political views are privileged-whiney-arsehollerism:

You say that education costs money. I must disagree wholeheartedly. If I truly cared about my education, and just my education, I could pop into the public library day in and day out for the rest of my life. I can literally acquire an education equal to if not surpassing that of any doctorate level graduate – for free – simply by researching in books freely offered by the county, or the internet that is also offered freely at the library.

Yeah, only not. What you’re talking about, Cogito, is called “personal improvement”. I do realise that because of your deep vocabulary issues, you might not know what it means. Therefore, I’ll explicate it to you while being only slightly condescending.

Yes, you can read all sorts of books in your library, and you can learn all sorts of things there. However, education is not just reading books and learning. It’s also interacting with other learning people, a process which is really really fun and rewarding, if you do it right, and which helps you figure out what you’re doing well and what you should improve still. More importantly, no matter how many books you read, this isn’t something you can put into your CV and expect it to help you find a better job as much as putting “PhD, Molecular Biology” will.  Verstanden?

When I was younger I was foolish. I actually spent cold hard cash attending college, getting an education in the subjects that mattered to me… I truly attended college for the education and not for the degree… because I had that same mentality then. Unfortunately, though, I spent a lot of money taking a lot of classes that didnt even pertain to my degree path. And why? Because I wanted to learn those topics… and I did so quite well.

Cackle, cackle, snort. 100 to 1 he simply couldn’t pass his finals. Bitter much?

But while my classmates came and went, many graduated quicker than I, I came to realize that I was wasting my money on an education. An education I was already passionate enough about to learn for free on my own time, anyway. If you want to learn subjects that interest you, do it for free at the library… your passion is already there and so learning on your own accord is not a burden. I learned then that I could get the same education in the same subjects I appreciated at no cost via the library or the internet at home.

Yeah, I gathered how educated you are from your posts. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

In short, my message to Cogito Ergo Sum would be: PLEASE WRITE SOME MOAR. WE NEED ALL THE HILARITY WE CAN GET. THANK YOU <3

* Every time you say “gay”, a fundamentalist theist of some sort froths at the mouth. Let’s see how many times we can say “gay”, shall we?

** It’s sort of sad, but I really do think “LOL”.

*** This one fetishizes Spanish genocide.

**** This one fetishizes Near Eastern genocide.

**** But then, it’s most likely only because I’m gay. I said “gay”!

***** Meeeeeeeeeeeeee.

***** I then look the word up. Then I memorise it, and use it in conversation, especially if I come across a sensitive snoflake with deep vocabulary, such as Cogito Ergo Sum.

We, big-word-using-people, even have our secret handshake! You know, si augur augurem*******.

******* Or should I say “accustomed to”? *Cackles*

******* LATIN HOW MEAAAAAAAAAAAN.

ETA: missing capital letters =_=

This post was born over the course of a few days and was inspired by my lesbian-wannabe girlfriend, who realised we were randomly switching between English, Polish and Japanese while writing silly comments on Facebook, and that it was a terrible shame that so many of our pals can’t understand Polish at all. Because, sometimes, we write haikus. In Polish. With lots of swearing.

Don’t worry, pals! I’ll teach you all you have to know!

(Also known as the “How many German loanwords you can fit in a single post”-post or “How many Brecht quotes can you fit in a single post”-post)

(The answer to the both questions is: A LOT)

(Brecht <3<3<3)

(Special thanks: to Albanian techno that helped to get me through this after the 100th “fuck the fuck off, you whore”)

The basic sentence structure of the Polish language is:

Subject-verb-profanity-object

or

Subject-profanity-verb-profanity-object-profanity

Note that the profanity is a theoretically optional, if rarely omitted, part of the typical Polish sentence.

(Cut for absolutely NSFW NSFW NSFW swearing)

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So, I participated in the programme three times, in Oogawara, Ishinomaki and Sendai; all three times I was the ALT.

Short version: Fun, fun, fun, DIALECTS :D :D :D

Long version behind the cut.

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