Some thoughts on language

From an unknown source, possibly George Carlin:

Four for Fore

We’ll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes;
but the plural of ox became oxen not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.
If the plural of man is always called men,
why shouldn’t the plural of pan be called pen?

If I spoke of my foot and show you my feet,
and give you a boot, would a pair be called beet?
If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth,
why shouldn’t the plural of booth be called beeth?

Then one may be that, and three would be those,
yet hat in the plural would never be hose,
and the plural of cat is cats, and not cose.

We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
but we say mother, we never say methren
Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him,
but imagine the feminine, she, shis and shim.

So here are some reasons to be grateful if you learned to speak English by immersion:

>The bandage was wound around the wound.
>The farm was used to produce produce.
>The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
> He could lead if her would get the lead out.
> The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
> Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.
> At the Army base, a bass was painted on the head of a bass drum.
> When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
> I did not object to the object.
> The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
> There was a row among the row of oarsmen about how to row.
> The buck does funny things when the does are present.
> After a number of Novocain injections, my jaw got number.

Let’s face it – English is tough.

There is no egg in eggplant not ham in hamburger; neither apple or pine in pineapple. English muffins weren’t invented in England or French Fries in France. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren’t so sweet, are meat.

We find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. And why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham?

Doesn’t it seem strange that you can make amends but not one amend? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one, what do you call it? If teachers taught, why didn’t preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

In what other language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell? How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which an alarm goes off by going on, and when the stars are out, they are visible, but when a light is out, it’s invisible.

A dilemma

How do you write about one of the best weekends you’ve ever had?

A simple chronology doesn’t seem to do it justice: My new girlfriend S came over on Friday night, we went out to a goth club, spent the afternoon together with kellyv Saturday, my ‘other’ girlfriend M came over Saturday night, we hosted PolyTampa Sunday, went out to dinner with S’s other significant others afterward.

The weekend as I remeber it isn’t really a chronology anyway. It’s more like a series of impressions, strung together like beads on a necklace:

Making out with S, who normally is moe inhibited about public displays of affection, on the deep couch on the edge of the dance floor, while alternating scenes from “Tron” and “A Clockwork Orange” play on the screens over our heads

Her hands and lips and tongue on me later that night

Waking up to the smell of kellyv‘s cooking the next morning, spending a lazy afternoon curled up on the couch getting some serious cuddle time in

M’s whirlwind arrival, and the first real in-depth conversation she and S have had; delighting in how well they get along together

M crawling into bed very late in the morning, waking me up just enough to untangle and curl up with her; falling asleep again between her and S

S’s teeth on my neck that morning, arousing me from my sleep; her evil giggle and her Wy don’t you see if M is awake?

The look of sleepy delight on M’s face when, voyeur that she is, she woke to S’s soft moans

kellyv laughing: I hear you! I know you’re awake!

Discovery: Yes, three people can fit in the upstairs shower; finding out how much fun it is to be sandwiched between two soapy bodies

More kellyv cooking; later, a house full of friends

Dinner, and conversation: Philosophy, mishaps with liquid-fuelled model rockets, plans for a trip to Atlanta for decadent chocolate fondue

More extended cuddle time with kellyv that night, and Monday morning

Flirting with S on the Webcam while getting ready for work

Even that doesn’t do it justice, not really. I feel very blessed and very fortunate to have made the connections I have made in my life, and that the people around me have chosen to share a part of their lives with me.