Acyrologia

I DO curl up in the feeble position.

This is one of those Facebook items, passed along by Grandiloquent Word of the Day, that I loved so much, thought I’d give it its own post. (AND I’m in a river in Egypt.)

How many errors to YOU see?

grammar

One of those words Americans apparently misuse is walla. “The correct word they are looking for is ‘voila’, which loosely translates as ‘here it is’, ‘there you go’, or similar meanings.”
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I had seen the word “pwned”, assumed it meant “owned,” but never bothered to look up the derivation until Arthur had been pwned. Here’s the Urban Dictionary, again.
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20 Jokes So Terrible They’re Actually Funny; well, some of them are…

Someone tell me why there is, again, a run of graphics suggesting that Bob Denver, who died in September 2005, died recently. there was a run of these reports in 2012, as I recall, and a couple times since then.

It’s like what SNL used to say about Franco: Bob Denver is STILL dead.

Right on! for the genericized noun

They are not capitalizing Coke because, in part of the country, coke could be a 7-Up or “diet dr. pepper.”

wordbrandsThis newspaper writer I’ve met notes: “MS Word kept capitalizing ‘laundromat.’ I checked, and Webster’s agrees. Westinghouse copyrighted it back in 1947. But. . . . really?” This led to this interesting discussion about all the words that, once upon a time, were capitalized because they were brand names but are not now:

App Store, Aspirin, Catseye, Cellophane, Dopp kit [I had to look this up, even though I’ve had one!], Dry ice, Escalator, Heroin, Kerosene, Lanolin, Linoleum, Mimeograph, Primal Therapy, Thermos, Touch-tone, Videotape, Yo-Yo, and Zipper.

And Dumpster Continue reading “Right on! for the genericized noun”

N is for English as a New Language

English, on a language perspective, makes no sense at all.

english_as_a_new_languagelMy wife is a teacher of English as a New Language (ENL). It has also been called English as a Second Language (ESL), but the NEW designation is more accurate because, for some of these students, English is their third or fourth language.

Here’s a 2008 article about English Language Learners (ELLs) that I think describes the process and problems of learning English for non-native speakers.

The rules for the order of adjectives are nearly instinctive for native-born speakers of English. Continue reading “N is for English as a New Language”

That reminded me of

I worked in that library as a page for seven months in 1969.

Ask a Muslim
I saw on my friend Lynne Jackson’s Facebook page on the Saturday morning of Albany’s annual tradition, the Tulip Festival, that there would be a booth where one could “Ask A Muslim” a question.

When the family finally got there, the family got to meet Nafisa and Fazana (pictured with that hatted Lynne). They were gracious and intelligent and wonderfully open. It was a wonderful idea, though I told them I thought it was quite brave.

Fazana wrote on her Facebook page “I talked to a non-Muslim gentleman who had just finished reading the English translation of the Quran and was pleased to report that nowhere in it did it say that Muslims should kill Christians. Needless to say, I wanted to recruit him to talk to others on behalf of Muslims because we are constantly trying to convince others to believe this fact!”

That reminded me of:

When my sister Leslie and I went to High school in Binghamton, NY, we were asked by the music teacher at suburban Vestal Junior High School Continue reading “That reminded me of”

“Bye, Felicia” and why it bugs me

“Felicia” makes an appearance at a raunchy post-performance party with the rappers at their hotel suite, which suddenly gets interrupted by two armed men knocking on the door.

marcorubiobyeSomeone I know personally used the phrase “Bye, Felicia” in his blog. I’d seen the phrase before, and while I had no idea about its derivation – the cutting edge of recent pop culture phrases I’m not – I’d glommed on to the fact that it was a dismissive response.

One use might be to say it after US Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) lost the Florida GOP Presidential primary and was forced to give up his Oval Office aspirations. Or about any of other more than a dozen candidates who’ve dropped out of the race.

“Bye, Felicia” bugged me to an irrational degree, and I was curious to find out why.

Part of it, I suppose, was that it had become Continue reading ““Bye, Felicia” and why it bugs me”