For the Grammar Police

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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Sinned » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:29 pm

Here we are mainly talking about WRITTEN grammar. Spoken grammar obeys a completely different set of rules and we say things that, written down, are completely nonsensical and illogical. Please don't confuse the two!

Moon, you got it in one with your quote. I don't appreciate being eaten. And I appreciate your sense of humour. [0]

[0] humor????
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby beachlion » Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:00 pm

For me, English is a second language. In Dutch, I'm quite at home and my writings are more or less in the style and at the level of Carl. In English not so much.
When I was studying to become an engineer, the English was technical English with the very basics of grammar. I know a lot of the bolts and nuts and technical manuals but that did not help with basic conversations.
For two years, I had an English teacher who was a black guy from Jamaica. He served with the RAF during WW2 and there he developed a very posh British accent (more British than the Queen's English) to hide his Carribean accent. So our way of speaking became also quite posh. After one year, during summer vacation at a campsite in the Netherlands, we played two weekends baseball against American soldiers who were based nearby. Beaten both times of course but it changed my way of speaking forever. The English teacher could not believe I did not pick it up in the USA.
My main problem is composing sentences because the English and Dutch rules are quite different. I read quite a lot in English so I go by ear in most cases. A sentence should feel right.
A second problem is the exact meaning of a word in relation to other words. Certain combinations have a different impact in English so I have to be careful.
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Kirbstone » Tue Apr 10, 2018 1:35 am

The hapless Englishman explorer in deepest equatorial Africa was surrounded by a dangerous-looking group of Native warriors, all dressed to the nines in bones & headdresses &c, one of them particularly well adorned.

When he attempted to address them, one of them replied: Bpigg Chiff Spik no Bpritish!! I think your 'British' is commendably very good, BL.

By far the most useful present the British 'gave' my Irish forebears in the 18th-19th Century was their language. If we Irish all had to learn English as a second language, it would be an uphill struggle indeed.


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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Sinned » Tue Apr 10, 2018 10:57 am

Fred, the pronunciation is al-um-in-ee-um because it is spelt Aluminium. In other words, the name of the metal has two I's in it not one. I have always thought that you Americans pronounced it wrongly as Al-oo-min-um. [0]

BL, as you have found accent in spoken English can change meanings and ways of speaking in very subtle ways.

[0] Unless you have changed the spelling also.
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby moonshadow » Tue Apr 10, 2018 11:01 am

Actually, folks around here typically pronounce it as "loominum"... :wink: Myself included on occasion! :lol:
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Feeling freedom » Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:14 pm

Sinned wrote:Fred, the pronunciation is al-um-in-ee-um because it is spelt Aluminium. In other words, the name of the metal has two I's in it not one. I have always thought that you Americans pronounced it wrongly as Al-oo-min-um. [0]

BL, as you have found accent in spoken English can change meanings and ways of speaking in very subtle ways.

[0] Unless you have changed the spelling also.


Canadian say it wrong too. :oops:
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Caultron » Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:35 pm

Kirbstone wrote:The hapless Englishman explorer in deepest equatorial Africa was surrounded by a dangerous-looking group of Native warriors, all dressed to the nines in bones & headdresses &c, one of them particularly well adorned.

When he attempted to address them, one of them replied: Bpigg Chiff Spik no Bpritish!! I think your 'British' is commendably very good, BL...

Reported quote from a cab driver in Bejing: "Aaaw, you spika velly goot English for Melican."
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby pelmut » Tue Apr 10, 2018 3:35 pm

Kirbstone wrote:The hapless Englishman explorer in deepest equatorial Africa...

...attempted to communicate with a native chief. To his surprise the chief replied in an impeccable English accent:"How do you do ...bzzzt...crrrkkkt...shwswww... I'm pleased to meet you".

"That's amazing!" said the Englishman, "I didn't expect anyone here would speak English"

"Oh brrrcrrrwt yes!" replied the chief."A lot of us speak English ...brrrzzzt...spzzt..., we learned it from shortwave radio".
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Gusto10 » Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:26 am

Feeling freedom wrote:Noted sinned.

Moon......add a Canadian to your Boston and southerner mix. It would be hard to understand the conversation. Every time we say "about" Americans think we are pointing out a boot. Then the mix of all the huh, uhuh and eh. :lol:

must be the West Coast pronunciation of "about", as on the East Coast it remains "about".
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Gusto10 » Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:30 am

pelmut wrote:
Kirbstone wrote:The hapless Englishman explorer in deepest equatorial Africa...

...attempted to communicate with a native chief. To his surprise the chief replied in an impeccable English accent:"How do you do ...bzzzt...crrrkkkt...shwswww... I'm pleased to meet you".

"That's amazing!" said the Englishman, "I didn't expect anyone here would speak English"

"Oh brrrcrrrwt yes!" replied the chief."A lot of us speak English ...brrrzzzt...spzzt..., we learned it from shortwave radio".

Grand!
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Gusto10 » Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:39 am

Many years ago, when in the old world commuting by car was still acceptable, I would listen en route to a BBC program called Professor Grammar. All hitches and glitches of the English language would be discussed and it was possible to call in and pose a question on English Grammar. Often enough, a Dutch teacher English would have called in, in order to get his opinion second when opposed by a student. In many cases the answer would be that both were correct. In essence it was handy as having lived in the US and Canada and at that time dealing on daily basis with London it was easy enough to use American wording when dealing with London and thus cause a bit of confusion. My last business partners were an Englishman and a Scotsman and even they didn't agree at times on the proper usage of the English language.
Having used the word proper, in English it will be understood as correct, in France as "clean". An example. A Dutchman had rented a holyday home in France but didn't speak French. The agency employed French people who also spoke a few words of English. Th Dutchman called the agency and said it the house where they were has nit the proper house. The agency called the home owner stating that the house was not clean. After having checked with the caretaker (French), the homeowner learned that the tenant hadn't arrived yet and informed the agency accordingly. The agency persisted in the fact that the house would not be clean. Hence the homeowner called the tenant in order to learn was the problem was and seemingly the tenant was under the impression the had rented another house than they had actually done. The agency didn't apologise to the home owner for the confusion caused and doesn't want to deal with the homeowner any more (it wasn't the only error made by the agency, partly due to lack of capability of handling other languages and part due to arrogance (standing corrected in their own language by a foreigner)).
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby skirtyscot » Sun Apr 15, 2018 6:08 pm

Thinks: do I want to join in their discussion about dropping the "i" from chemical elements?

Na, sodum.

... And I bet you thought all the best jokes about the elements argon!

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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby Sinned » Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:02 pm

Nice one SS, apt too.
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Re: For the Grammar Police

Postby crfriend » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:25 am

skirtyscot wrote:Na, sodum.

Oh, my word. That, in context, is a thing of sublime beauty.
... And I bet you thought all the best jokes about the elements argon!

And that was just gratuitous.

Elements. Where would we be without 'em?
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