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

languagehat.com » CHANGELING.

Monday 16 April 19:04:07 UTC 2012

I was taken aback to discover that the word changeling does not mean at all what I thought it did, at least according to the dictionaries. The American Heritage Dictionary can stand in for all the rest, since they all have these three senses in one or another order: "1. A child secretly exchanged for another. 2. Archaic A changeable, … [Link]

Language Log » The first "asshole" in the Times?

Monday 16 April 15:47:51 UTC 2012

In "Larkin v. the Gray Lady," Mark Liberman credits a Language Log reader with pointing out that "the NYT printed asshole for the first time a couple of weeks ago" ("Race, Tragedy and Outrage Collide After a Shot in Florida", 4/1/2012): Mr. Zimmerman told the dispatcher that this “suspicious guy” was in his late teens, with something in his hands. … [Link]

Language Log » Larkin v. the Gray Lady

Monday 16 April 11:08:25 UTC 2012

Michiko Kakutani, "A Master of Verse Spreads Bad Cheer", NYT 4/9/2012: Many American readers know Larkin chiefly from his more darkly funny lines: “Sexual intercourse began/In nineteen sixty-three/(Which was rather late for me) —/Between the end of the ‘Chatterley’ ban/And the Beatles’ first LP” (from “Annus Mirabilis”). Or: They mess you up, “your mum and dad./They may not mean to, … [Link]

Urban Word of the Day » taxable

Monday 16 April 8:00:00 UTC 2012

if someone meets your personal criteria for having sex with, he or she is 'taxable.' I think he is so sexy, definitely taxable! [Link]

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