goingplaceslivinglife

Travel, Food, and Slices of Life

Are you Bilingual?

Leave a comment

I grew up in the New York Metropolitan area  so currently I’m stumbling over going “to the coast” instead of “down the shore”.  But my largest indoctrination into another subset of American English was the 17 years I lived in Tennessee.

Right away I noticed that Southern speech was more “picturesque” with much more use of idioms than we used in New Jersey.  I remember my mother-in-law, when adding her effort to a community food drive commented, ” ‘Every little bit helps’, said the old lady who peed in the sea.”

Recently on my Facebook feed someone referred to the rain sounding like a cow peeing on a flat rock. Without checking, I knew he had Southern roots.southern slang

So, this past week I have been feeling puny and I think I finally understand the use of that word for “sick”. I just can’t do what I need or want to do…and thereby I am diminished.  Yup, feeling puny.

Here is an pretty funny video of Irish people trying to figure out the meanings of some Southernisms.

Few of us are as fully bilingual as some of the high school sprinters I got to know when my son Sam was running for his high school.  These guys always spoke to me in perfect English, and then I would overhear them talking to their cohort in another language. It had English words but I certainly did not understand that street talk or jive talk or whatever it is called. When I pointed out to one of the guys how perfectly bilingual he was and how that could be an asset for later employment he looked surprised.

Some people spend years in the American school system and do not learn to speak grammatical English. Some people claim to be pretty proud of their use of slang and swear words. This has to be by choice. A bad teacher here or there who might have their own idiosyncrasies of speech can not be blamed.  A choice to SOUND stupid IS stupid.

American English has constantly evolving slang. The “groovy” of the late 1960s is long gone from vernacular use but still understood. Yet “23 skidoo” from the 1920s left me pondering. Check out this website with lists from each decade. That would be sweet.

Television programme: Dad's Army.JOHN LAURIEBritish ActorOn the set of the classic BBC TV comedy show "Dad's Army"Universal Pictorial Press PhotoPAH 205929 20.08.1970...UPPA UPPAuniformtf100set of dads armyseriouspitchforkPAH 205929john lauriein costumefull facedied 1980dads armydad's armycostumebritishborn dumfries scotlandborn 1897black and white photographbbc tv comedy seriesaloneactor20.08.19701/2 length024184(laurie)(8mb)...London...London...United Kingdom

Advertisements

Author: GoingPlaces Can-Do Zero Waste

I moved to McMinnville a few years ago and was impressed with its friendliness and the beauty of the surrounding countryside. I write several blogs. GoingPlacesLivingLife is my personal blog related to travel, food and just general thoughts. Can-Do Real Food tells about my business processing local produce from small farms and preserving it by canning and dehydrating. The concept of Zero Waste appeals to me because we can truly reduce what gets tossed into the landfill with very small changes in our lifestyle. Join us.

Tell Me What You Think

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s