Posted by: The Amoeba | February 27, 2008

Awe … fergit it

As you regular readers surely know by now, Quilly will soon be leaving her duties as professional nappy-changer, and taking up a new post teaching fifth grade – which is what she was hoping she’d be doing in the first place.

As a skilled teacher of English as a Second Language, she’ll likely be charged with improving the reading scores of kids speaking Hawai‘ian pidgin and other foreign tongues. And in the process, I’m sure to be hearing, frequently, a phrase acquired in Las Vegas (where the principal foreign tongue traces its ancestry to Iberia) and vividly alive today. One that is now my favorite (OK, my only) phrase in Spanish:

          ¡Inglés es loco!

You wish proof that English, as a language, is nutso? Consider …

I was reading Joel’s latest post – he scours the USA for church signs that punch the “What were they thinking?” button. One of those signs reads “In the beginning, God; keep it that way”. As if we had any say over the activities of a being which we credit with omnipotence, omniscience, omnipresence, all that … I mean, whatever happened with staring out the cave mouth at the starry starry night and experiencing the vastness, the magnificence, with awe …

Awful!

Hey, wait a minute. Somebody tells me that, I’m not going to feel magnificent, I’m going to feel like I’ve screwed up. If I don’t know “somebody” pretty well, I might even think some offense was meant, and a different kind of person than I might be tempted to introduce the speaker to a culinary treat: the knuckle sandwich.

Since when did “wondrous” turn into “disgusting?”

Now, persons of a certain age, Cooper, actually do have a word that means “wondrous”. Which I hope to hear on those occasions when I do something approaching half right.

Awesome!

OK, that works … hey, wait a minute! How the hell did we get to a state where “some” awe is cooler than “full of” awe? Huh? Huh??

I tell you. ¡Inglés es loco! Right?

OK, all together now. One, two, three …

Awwwwww

  – O Ceallaigh
Copyright © 2008 Felloffatruck Publications. All wrongs deplored.
All opinions are mine as a private citizen.

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Responses

  1. You always make me laugh. Oh, and I enjoy your posts, too.

  2. I find it awe inspiring just to lay in the grass, without the cave and look up at the sky. If I must I lay on the pavement.

    I have done a mean thing and tagged you all.
    I am a mean girl – anytime in 2008 will be fine.

  3. Are you laughing at the intentional humor or the unintentional, Q?

    The pavement, cooper? The all-American take on the swami’s bed of nails? I figured you were tough, but …

    I’ve been informed by She that this is my tag. You’ll get what you deserve ;).

  4. OC — yes.

    Cooper — she isn’t disrespecting you, she is insisting he pay for his own sins.

  5. hm… that was funny, thank you.

    if anyone thinks english is irrational, they should try to learn french. there’s more exceptions to the rules there than there are rules.
    oh, and not to mention slovene, my native tongue, probably one of the most irrational languages there is. but i grew up with it so pft

  6. polona, the thing I heard about French was that, because France has been sacked and pillaged by every Roman, Viking, and American tourist that ever came near the place, it’s spent thousands of years picking up all the slings and arrows of outrageous syntax.

    Actually, the same holds true for English.

    Moral: if you desire a language that makes some sort of sense, don’t give it to a people who live along an invasion route.


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