Записи пользователя: KattyJamison (список заголовков)

We haven't written anything for a while

Not that I have anything especially fun to write now, but here is a web-site with jokes about English language: www.ahajokes.com/english_jokes.html

And a sample from there:

The English Language

Have you ever wondered why foreigners have trouble with the English Language?

Let's face it
English is a stupid language.
There is no egg in the eggplant
No ham in the hamburger
And neither pine nor apple in the pineapple.
English muffins were not invented in England
French fries were not invented in France.

We sometimes take English for granted
But if we examine its paradoxes we find that
Quicksand takes you down slowly
Boxing rings are square
And a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

If writers write, how come fingers don't fing.
If the plural of tooth is teeth
Shouldn't the plural of phone booth be phone beeth
If the teacher taught,
Why didn't the preacher praught.

If a vegetarian eats vegetables
What the heck does a humanitarian eat!?
Why do people recite at a play
Yet play at a recital?
Park on driveways and
Drive on parkways

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy
Of a language where a house can burn up as
It burns down
And in which you fill in a form
By filling it out
And a bell is only heard once it goes!

English was invented by people, not computers
And it reflects the creativity of the human race
(Which of course isn't a race at all)

That is why
When the stars are out they are visible
But when the lights are out they are invisible
And why it is that when I wind up my watch
It starts
But when I wind up this observation,
It ends.

@темы: lol


We have been too quiet for a while, haven't we?

Years ago, my sister studied in a "law for foreign students" program in Boston. Since her fellow students were, predicatbly, from all over the world, the abundance of accents and ways of speech was astounding. Once, a fellow student asked her after class:
-Eera, do you want to go wheel washig?
-What? - asked my curious sister who has never hears of such an exotic passtime.
-Wheel washing. You know, for fun.
-Where would you go to do it?
-To a harbor, on a boat.
A boat with wheels? Like an old steam-boat? And in all her life my sister never suspected that they needed washing...
-Are the wheels on the boat?
-No, outisde!
Well, that is in keeping with the steam-boat, though my sister.
-And how do you wash them? With a broom?
-No, you look outside, maybe take a camera...
-Ah! "Watching!" You mean, "looking at them"?
-Yes, yes!
-And why would you look at wheels?
-They are interesting. They are so big!
Failing to understand how wheels, even big, can be interesting, my sister questioned further:
-And do they spin?
This got the guy to pause.
-I don't think they spin, - he said thoughtfully, - But they dive, and make fountains, and they are really big animals.
He meant "whale watching" - a popular sight on the Atlantic shore. My sister did go.

@темы: lol, how to say it?


Another guessing game

Everyone who has a second to consult the map knows that the largest state in the United States of America is Alasca. However, there is a relatively popular opinion that Alasca "does not count" and in actuality the largest state in the USA is another state. Can anyone offer any suggestions as to which states might it be and why?

@темы: discussion, lol


Guessing game

Interpreters, anyone? ))

A young woman looks at a notesheet and says: "Ah, finally! Sun dawns over a marblehead!"

@темы: idioms, lol, translation


Spelling bee

I don't give a damn for a man that can only spell a word one way.
- Mark Twain

Let us find CORRECT ways of spelling words different ways. Make Mark Twain proud of us ))

color - colour
analyze - analyse
centre - center
analog - analogue
encyclopedia - encyclopaedia
checker - chequer
tire - tyre
knit sweater - knitted sweater

There are many more. Suggestions?

@темы: discussion, grammar, lol


Global Warming

We got quiet here for a bit. So I am kicking off a discussion about Global Warming with a popular article my good friend Mellie Gilder M.D. wrote for Discovery Institute (www.discovery.org/).


The article is an easy read, it is funny and interesting, it is not at all science-dry (it is popular article, after all), and it has very good examples of proper citation of sources. I think we could have an interesting discussion about it and Global Warming in general.

@темы: discussion


Running by

FYI* small but important difference.

A person, who is translating from one language into another in written form is a translator.
A person, who is doing the same thing in oral form (parallel or sequential) in an interpreter.

*For your information

Oh, yes, and there is a very common language in the US that does not have translators at all, only interpreters. Can you guess what it is?

@темы: that's useful


Food culture

So I'm kicking off the Food in the English-Speaking World discussion.

First off, one has to realize that English-speaking world is BIG. Indian cuisine is about as different from Canadian, as Zimbabwean from Turkish. I'll be talking mostly about American, Canadian and British, since I know those best.

Some people think American food is a derivative of English and some think it's hamburgers and French Fries. Neither is exactly true, or even close to truth. Although, yes, Americans do eat pot roast, hamburgers and pound cake.
US is an extremely multi-cultural country, and was multicultural to begin with. Dutch, Spanish, French, British, Italian, Irish, Chinese and Indian foods are all over the place and they penetrated so far into the "national" potluck that most people here don't think of them as "foreign" foods anymore. For example, today in out hospital cafeteria you can get:
Muffins and pound cakes - British
Stuffed halapinos - Mexican
Strawberry parfait - French
Spagetti and meatballs in pineapple sauce - the cross between Italian and Hawaiian, I imagine...
Pizza - Italian
Macaroni salad - American
Apple pie - Dutch
and so on. And I did actualy go down there to check.

So, what that means is you can find anything you want here, as far as food goes, or nearly anything. Including salted cucumbers, сметана, and кисло млeко. But you might have to search for a bit.
Now, "sour cream" is prepared very much like "сметана", except is is done with cream, not milk, and it is never diluted with water or milk. So it looks like Russian творог, thick and smooth, not liquid at all. If you want it to look like Russian smetana you can dilute it with full-fat milk or cream.
"Curd" is not actually творог but a kind of consistency for milk products. "Творог" is "cottage cheese". Cottage cheese can be large curd, small curd, smooth and whatnot else. Most cottage cheese made in the US is made along the Northern European recipies (Skandinavian, Northern French), so it looks chunky (small or large curd). But you can buy cottage cheese that is smooth and a bit sour to the taste, like Russian ones, you just need to go to a farmhouse or specialty Eastern European store.
Salted cucumber (preserved in salted water with spices) and pickled cucumbers (preserved in vineager water with spices) can both be found in the US. But mostly cucumbers are pickled, with a few salted here and there, as opposed to in Russia, where there were a few pickled and mostly salted. Salt was hard to get here for a long while, so people used vineager to preserve pretty much everything.

Last thing for now. Americans pasteurize their foods to the fare-thee-well, probably with a battle-cry of "No bacteria remains crawling!" So if the milk does not go sour for a week and sour cream stays good for a month that does not mean they have preservatives or artificial additives; it just means that they are well-pasteurized. Which is usually a good thing, although cursed inconvenient when you are trying to make sour milk for pancakes.

Questions? Comments? Disagreements? Corrections?

@темы: discussion, that's useful


Project Gutenberg

I suspect that almost everyone knows about this one, but just in case:

Project Gutenberg is a not-for-profit online library of English books which had lost the copyright due to time elapsed from the publishing date. If you want to read Jane Austin, Mark Twain, Stevenson or Swift in original - they're all here. There are also some books in other labguages, but the collections are, predictably, much smaller.


@темы: that's useful


TOEFL test

TOEFL (test of English as a foreign language), is a required exam for almost any college in an English-speaking country. In the times I was taking it, almost 10 years ago, they were asking for a score of 550-600 (paper-test) for acceptance. It is a reasonably straight-forward test. As Чиффа reminded me, the results of TOEFL are only valid for 2 years, so one should only take it if one expects to need it shortly.

General information about the test:


Free question samples at the link below.


@темы: that's useful



I might as well start the ball rolling.

I have lived in the US, state Massachusetts, for 10 years this July. I work as a family doctor in a local hospital and am married to an English-speaking guy, so get plenty of language practice at home. I love languages and linguistics and will be very happy to discuss them with anyone.
I have taken TOEFL, SAT, GRE and what seems like hundreds of other exams, so I can be a resource on those.
I am reasonably fluent in American slang and bio/technical lingo, but hopelessly outdated in British or Australian English.
I am happy to talk about books, articles, dictionaries, translations and other things but I do not have any kind of a relationship with video-production, so chances are I have not seen any movie anyone wants to discuss.

Open to questions and over* to someone else.

* Meet-and-Greet is the "code name" of the first visit to a doctor's office.
* One says "over" when one is speaking on an old or poorly working communication device, indicating, that this is time for the other person to speak. One says "out" indicating that from one's point of view this communication session is done. So "over and out" means "I have said all I wanted; done unless you have a say." Used by military wuite a bit.

@темы: discussion

Ru_English: Говорят не по-русски