Author Topic: Misuse of Foreigh Words.  (Read 5279 times)

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Paper Roses

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2011, 07:25:42 PM »
Just curious - is your mis spelling of "foreign" in the thread title intentional?

My spelling of 'foreign' was not intentional.  Was your misspelling of 'mis spelling' intentional?

Yes, as a matter of fact, it was.
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Wonderflonium

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #16 on: September 30, 2011, 09:04:08 PM »
And yet, somehow, Nintendo proudly displays its Wii.

I LOST IT when I read this!!!  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D
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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #17 on: September 30, 2011, 09:08:15 PM »
My cousin and I were e-mailing about her wedding plans and talking about how her fiance was being a little girly and princessy. (It was all in good fun.) She called him a "pre-madonna." I had to say it aloud to figure out what she meant.
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Xallanthia

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2011, 09:48:56 PM »
I have some great ones from Rome...  two favorites really stand out.  One is an older sign in the Coliseum, which is written in Italian with an English translation below.  The sign is discussing how certain aspects of the function of the Coliseum at a particular period were misunderstood because of a document that had been poorly translated.  However, when speaking of the poor translation, the English sign proclaimed that "the translation was carelles" (careless).

The second was another informative sign translated from Italian, in the ruins of an old roman house under Santi Giovanni e Paolo, in Rome.  The sign was talking about how you could see the stamps on the marble, that indicated that the marble blocks had had their taxes properly paid.  The word for "to stamp" in Italian is "tamponare."

The very friendly Italian guide turned a truly impressive shade of red when I figured out how to tell her that the sign said that the marble had been tamponed.

lipli

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2011, 10:57:36 PM »
My fiance's first language isn't English.  So we have had a few interesting moments where I have had no clue what he was talking about.  He told me one day that he wanted to go to Chi-pot-tle's (sorry that's as close to phonetic as I can get - like Chinese chi and bottle with a p).  I had no clue where he was talking about but assumed that he meant a ethnic restaurant from his country.  One day we were driving by Chipotle's and he asked if I had ever eaten at Chipottle's and pointed to Chipotle's.  I lost it.  I asked if he meant Chipotle's.  And we had a nice debate on what was the logical pronunciation of that word.  He stands by Chipottle's. 

Lynn2000

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #20 on: September 30, 2011, 11:14:10 PM »
My cousin and I were e-mailing about her wedding plans and talking about how her fiance was being a little girly and princessy. (It was all in good fun.) She called him a "pre-madonna." I had to say it aloud to figure out what she meant.

There's some kind of a brainteaser game built around this concept... They have random-looking syllables on the card, and you have say them all out loud in just the right way to figure out what word they make. Does anyone know the game I mean? This would be so much better if I could post an example...  ::)
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Bijou

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2011, 12:04:43 AM »
Apparently, in Spanish a man can be embarazado (embarrassed), but not embarazada (pregnant). 






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Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2011, 05:04:02 AM »
My cousin and I were e-mailing about her wedding plans and talking about how her fiance was being a little girly and princessy. (It was all in good fun.) She called him a "pre-madonna." I had to say it aloud to figure out what she meant.

There's some kind of a brainteaser game built around this concept... They have random-looking syllables on the card, and you have say them all out loud in just the right way to figure out what word they make. Does anyone know the game I mean? This would be so much better if I could post an example...  ::)

That is a Rebus puzzle.  :)
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Lynn2000

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #23 on: October 01, 2011, 08:34:10 PM »
My cousin and I were e-mailing about her wedding plans and talking about how her fiance was being a little girly and princessy. (It was all in good fun.) She called him a "pre-madonna." I had to say it aloud to figure out what she meant.

There's some kind of a brainteaser game built around this concept... They have random-looking syllables on the card, and you have say them all out loud in just the right way to figure out what word they make. Does anyone know the game I mean? This would be so much better if I could post an example...  ::)

That is a Rebus puzzle.  :)

Apparently there's also a game called "Mad Gab."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mad_Gab

One of the examples they give is "These if hill wore," which becomes "The Civil War" when said properly (usually, faster to run the words together in a different way).

I work in a place where a lot of people speak English as a second language (with a variety of languages as the first) and not all of them are terribly fluent, at least at the casual verbal communication level. Speaking with them often points out a lot of funny things about English pronunciation and usage that I take for granted as a native English speaker. Oh, of course I can't think of any good examples at the moment... One friend used to say, "I'm perch!" when she was thirsty. She could never get a feel for "I'm parched" instead, because a perch is a fish, and fish are associated with water, and in her mind she was kind of making a new idiom, like, "I'm as thirsty as a fish out of water" or something like that. Not a connection I ever thought about before, but it does kind of make sense. As much sense as any "real" English idiom, anyway.
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Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #24 on: October 01, 2011, 09:29:43 PM »
My cousin and I were e-mailing about her wedding plans and talking about how her fiance was being a little girly and princessy. (It was all in good fun.) She called him a "pre-madonna." I had to say it aloud to figure out what she meant.

There's some kind of a brainteaser game built around this concept... They have random-looking syllables on the card, and you have say them all out loud in just the right way to figure out what word they make. Does anyone know the game I mean? This would be so much better if I could post an example...  ::)

That is a Rebus puzzle.  :)

Apparently there's also a game called "Mad Gab."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mad_Gab

One of the examples they give is "These if hill wore," which becomes "The Civil War" when said properly (usually, faster to run the words together in a different way).

I work in a place where a lot of people speak English as a second language (with a variety of languages as the first) and not all of them are terribly fluent, at least at the casual verbal communication level. Speaking with them often points out a lot of funny things about English pronunciation and usage that I take for granted as a native English speaker. Oh, of course I can't think of any good examples at the moment... One friend used to say, "I'm perch!" when she was thirsty. She could never get a feel for "I'm parched" instead, because a perch is a fish, and fish are associated with water, and in her mind she was kind of making a new idiom, like, "I'm as thirsty as a fish out of water" or something like that. Not a connection I ever thought about before, but it does kind of make sense. As much sense as any "real" English idiom, anyway.

The reason I went with Rebus is because the example I saw was "H + [picture of ear] = Hear", and I thought that's what you were going for.
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Lynn2000

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #25 on: October 01, 2011, 09:35:36 PM »
The reason I went with Rebus is because the example I saw was "H + [picture of ear] = Hear", and I thought that's what you were going for.

Oh yes, sorry, in my excitement of figuring out how to successfully post a link I forgot to address that. :) I do associate Rebus puzzles more with pictures, and was thinking more about words/syllables only. But, your post did prompt me to do a better Google search to figure out what I meant, so thanks. :)
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baglady

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #26 on: October 02, 2011, 02:51:59 PM »
It depresses me that fewer and fewer people understand that it's "chaise longue" not "chaise lounge." Yes, you can lounge in it, but "chaise longue" is French for "long chair." Even the one person at my workplace who is an even bigger grammar/spelling/pronunciation geek than I am got this wrong. That's why I've developed the habit of changing it to "lounge chair."
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Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #27 on: October 02, 2011, 04:08:31 PM »
It depresses me that fewer and fewer people understand that it's "chaise longue" not "chaise lounge." Yes, you can lounge in it, but "chaise longue" is French for "long chair." Even the one person at my workplace who is an even bigger grammar/spelling/pronunciation geek than I am got this wrong. That's why I've developed the habit of changing it to "lounge chair."

I totally did not know this!  That's fascinating.
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GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #28 on: October 02, 2011, 07:13:09 PM »
A few years back, my sister and I were both spending summers teaching English as a second language overseas and we both ended up picking up jobs in eastern Europe...she in Poland, I in Germany.  During a stretch where we both had a couple days off, we decided to visit each other since we were both sort of homesick, so we made arrangements to meet up in a city in Poland called Wroclaw, which we both wanted to visit. (It's super cool by the way).

One evening we were there, we decided we wanted to go to a movie.  My sister had cleverly been teaching herself to speak Polish by watching kids' shows and such on TV and by then she had a pretty good working knowledge of the language, enough to do simple interactions anyways.  We thought we had figured out how to get to the movie theatre from where we were staying, but we took a wrong turn and got lost somehow, so my sister went to ask a gentleman on the street for directions.  I couldn't understand what they were saying, but the guy's face went from curious to surprised to confused then finally to understanding.  When I asked my sister what had happened, she (Rather embarrassed) confessed that she had used the wrong words and instead of asking him for directions on how to get to the cinema, she had either asked him if he would TAKE us to the cinema, or if he wanted to JOIN us at the cinema (she isn't sure which). 

No wonder the poor guy was confused. LOL.

As an amusing aside, I recall the French side of a box of a certain popular cereal (I'm in Canada, where pretty much everything has an English side and a French side) used to translate to "Crunchy flakes of corn with a suspicion of honey."
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BabylonSister

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Re: Misuse of Foreigh Words.
« Reply #29 on: October 03, 2011, 06:17:07 PM »
I can think of two:

In the old fortified city of Carcassonne is Saint-Nazaire cathedral. It's a touristic attraction but also a real church building in which masses take place. There is a sign at the entrance giving instructions on proper behavior. The sign is in both French and English. In English, it asks people to respect the "Catholic cult". Eeeep. (I think they got fooled by the false friend "culte" = "worship" or "worship service")

My great-uncle was a missionary in Viet-Nam. Vietnamese is a tonal language, like Chinese. That's tricky. One day, he had his rifle  on a sling and was riding his bicycle. He met a Vietnamese acquaintance and tried to say "I'm going bird hunting" but the reaction on the other person's face told he had used the wrong tone. Apparently, he said "I'm going girl hunting".