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 » From 'a terrible' to 'the latest'

Monday 6 November 21:25:22 UTC 2017

It's the saddest thing I have seen in many months of sad news: The front page of the Metro, a free newspaper given away on the buses in Britain, said "At least 27 people were killed during a morning church service in the latest US shooting massacre." "The latest"! They're now so routine that the Metro has switched from indefinite … [Link]

Language Log » How to pronounce the name of the president of Catalonia

Monday 6 November 13:39:44 UTC 2017

Short answer: Long, detailed answer from a linguist, Francesc Torres-Tamarit. Remember Eyjafjallajökull? This is much easier. "Eyjafjallajökull fail " (4/16/10) "A little Icelandic phonetics " (4/19/10) "Feline ambulation and volcanic nomenclature " (4/22/10) "Another jökull heard from? " (6/13/10) "Jökull of the year" (5/22/11) [h.t. Donald Clarke] [Link]

Urban Word of the Day » posse

Monday 6 November 12:08:44 UTC 2017

your crew, your hommies, a group of friends, people who may or may not have your back me an' my posse gonna hang tonite [Link]

Language Log » What does your tattoo mean?

Monday 6 November 2:02:49 UTC 2017

On reddit: My friend's tattoo. When asked "what does that mean?" He replies, "I don't know, I don't speak Chinese." That is literally what it means. from funny Wǒ bù zhīdào 我不知道 ("I don't know") Wǒ bù huì shuō Zhōngguó huà 我不會說中國話 ("I can't speak Chinese") No comment, but comments welcome. [h.t. Tim Leonard] [Link]


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