John Gordon Ross

A Man for All Reasons

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Language Stuff

Almost everyone uses language, so inevitably almost everyone thinks they are an expert in it. I don’t consider myself an expert, though most of my work requires at least language competence and sometimes actual skill, but I do follow the blogs featured on this feeds page.

(If you are wondering where the translation-related feeds have all gone, I have put them on their own page.)

Most of the blogs represented here are in English, most of the time, but don’t be surprised to find other languages used. Go with the flow – I occasionally find myself pleasantly surprised at how much I can grasp in languages I have never seen before.

Language On the Net

Wordorigins.org » 1960 Words

Friday 16 March 12:11:00 UTC 2012

The Oxford English Dictionary has 462 words with first citations from 1960. In that year, you could barf and upchuck; people altered their appearance with dreadlocks and body art; Cobol and other software began altering our world; crudités could be served with tzatziki sauce; and Herberts and Roys occupied opposite ends of the social spectrum and the globe. [Link]

Language Log » Journalism 101: a passive fact-check

Friday 16 March 8:49:09 UTC 2012

A furious Daniel Schwammenthal at The Commentator excoriates The Economist for accusing the Israeli government of being delusional and paranoid. Asking rhetorically why there continues to be conflict between Israel and the Palestinians according to The Economist’s view, Schwammenthal adds a linguistic element to his political critique: "Violent clashes and provocations erupted whenever the peace process seemed on the verge … [Link]

Urban Word of the Day » tranq

Friday 16 March 7:06:41 UTC 2012

(Short for tranquilizer.) 1. A sedative, or the act of sedating. 2. Any chemical substance used for calming a human or animal through injection or ingestion. n. "The TRANQs are kept in the emergency medical locker by the gauze." v. "The bear was TRANQed so that officials could safely transport it back into the wild." v. "You need to TRANQ … [Link]

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