Friday, January 25, 2008

Our Crazy English Language

You know, I keep hearing more and more complaints from people everyday about having to deal with someone who doesn't speak English. It's understandably frustrating having to deal with someone in a service field that you can't communicate with, and I've done my share of complaining as well! But did you ever stop to think how HARD it is to learn our language?

I work in the office of a private Christian school, and one of our teachers gave me an article to read about our language, and it began with this poem:

We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes;
but plural of ox became oxen not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
yet the plural of moose should never be meese.
You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice;
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 I 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, not cose.
We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
but though we say mother, we never say methren!

The article went on to say, let's face it - English is a crazy language! We have so many screwy pronunciations that can mess up your mind.... for example:
"If you have a rough cough, climbing can be tough when going through the bough of a tree."
"Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present."
"The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert."

We should be grateful that we grew up speaking English and don't have to learn it as a second language. All the people who ARE learning it probably think we should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane!


Anonymous said...

Hey! You didn't post ANYTHING about YOUR birthday. Trying to forget??? Tsk Tsk.

love you,

Leigh Anne said...

OF COURSE I'm trying to forget--but since my children keep asking me how I'm doing now that I'm in my "upper 40's", it's kinda hard to!!
But, no matter. As my cousin Stacy recently put it, "Life...*sigh* SO good!"

Love you too, my Bobsey Twin! And thanks for the e-card!

Stacy said...

Leigh Anne,

Don't you love the 40's? Really. I like it so much more than the earlier years.

I love the button you sent, but it's not showing up on the board. Got to figure that out.

Em and I got a kick out of this post, by the way. I'll have to post something about Chinglesh. We usually have a good laugh with signs over here.



Anonymous said...

moms in her upper 40's! hahaah im half way there almost!
<3, ashleigh, favorite 21 yr old daughter

Stacy said...

Just wait, Ashleigh, oh cousin I've never met! My dad called me up on my 25th birthday and said, "How does it feel to be a quarter of a century old?"

That sure shifted MY para-diggum. ;) (paradigm, if you haven't seen the commercial) ha!