Trolleys, maths, Ebonics, and more stuff about language
Before I start what will surely be a very long post, let me say that I love languages. I love learning them, reading about them, listening to them. My biggest regret in college was not going for a linguistics degree because I didn't realize I could until it was too late.
So I'm bringing up this topic because of two things. One was an article I saw on the BBC news website where Britons got to complain about their least favourite Americanisms and the other was something someone at work said to me. Let me start with that second one because it's more outrageous and attention grabbing.
I work at a school. My coworker and I were talking about how well students do in the English classes because that's what you talk about here, and somehow or another she starts talking about how we have a lot of black students who don't do very well in their English classes despite doing well in other classes. She says - these are her words exactly - "maybe it's because of that pig English they speak." I hear this and very quickly several things go through my brain. I know, right? What kind of racist thing is that to say? You work at a school! Then I thought, oh, wait, she probably meant to say pidgin English, like a kind of creole language that evolves when you get people who don't have a mutual language to speak. Wait, wait, that's still kind of racist and offensive. Argh. What do I say? So as I sit there she goes into how dumb the idea of Ebonics is and I start wishing she'd kept her voice down or that I could find some excuse to get away.
And that's the end of that story. Nothing special, just showing you how awful coworkers can be. D:
Now for something I really enjoy: the differences between American English and British English and how upset people get over them. You can check the link above and see the article of complaining Britons for yourself, but I've also taken the liberty of adding their list below.
Some of these complaints make sense, some don't. Some are things I've never heard in America (and would make me cringe if I did) and some of the suggestions the Brits who contributed to this list made are hilarious. My favorite one it the suggestion that we should say 'fortnightly' instead of 'bi-weekly' but the list also includes some of my favorite Britishisms such as 'full stop' (which we Americans call a period) math with an S (I think it's so cute to hear this), and trolley which makes some people this of this:
But makes me think of this:
Here's that list, btw.
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:12 PM by Cherrim
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:14 PM by Cherrim
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:16 PM by Mr Cat Dog
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:17 PM by Oryx
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:20 PM by Anna
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:51 PM by
Updated July 25th, 2011 at 2:56 PM by Patchisou Yutohru
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 2:55 PM by Esper
Posted July 25th, 2011 at 7:44 PM by Gold warehouse
Updated July 25th, 2011 at 7:52 PM by Gold warehouse
Posted July 26th, 2011 at 12:45 AM by Alternative