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

Language Log » Context

Wednesday 4 April 18:31:28 UTC 2012

Aayesha Siddiqui, "How Western Psychology Needs To Rethink Depression", WBUR 4/2/2012, quoting Jerome Kagan in an interview with Meghna Chakrabarti, "Psychology Is In Crisis", 3/29/2012: How the English language falls short: “Let’s take the field of personality. Right now we have terms like introvert, extrovert, shy, anxious. Notice those words are naked. They don’t say with whom you’re introverted, when … [Link]

Wordorigins.org » 1964 Words

Wednesday 4 April 12:13:00 UTC 2012

The Oxford English Dictionary has 363 words with first citations from 1964. In that year, mack daddies consorted with skanks and hos; Japan gave us both ninjas and yakuza; schlubs and dorks occupied the lower rungs of the social ladder; newbie programmers were tossing bad BASIC programs into the bit-bucket; and the frug was the coolest thing at the disco. [Link]

Language Log » Stream of consciousness blather

Wednesday 4 April 9:48:32 UTC 2012

Lately I've been trying to explain to my friends who don't know Chinese what fèihuà 废话 means. Basically it is composed of the two morphemes "waste / useless / abandoned / ruined / maimed" and "talk", i.e., "nonsense". To give a sense of its implications, here is a longer list of English definitions: nonsense, rubbish, garbage, bullshit, bunkum, buncombe, claptrap, … [Link]

Urban Word of the Day » Order of the Broken Wrist

Wednesday 4 April 7:30:00 UTC 2012

A man that is known to be gay. Man #1: "Dude, Joe sure seems to get a lot of ladies."Man #2: "Naw, not him. He is a member of the Order of the Broken Wrist."Man #1: "No kidding? I thought he liked girls." [Link]

languagehat.com » COLLINS ONLINE II.

Wednesday 4 April 0:35:52 UTC 2012

Back in 2003 I had a brief post linking to a site I said had Collins bilingual dictionaries; it doesn't seem to any more, but the good folks at Collins sent me a link to their new site, which not only has their French, German, and Spanish dictionaries, it has translations into a bunch of other languages. Go to the … [Link]

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