With the title "Yeah… that totally translates to 'love'", imgur presents the following image:
Archive for Writing
There is a designated staff member whose job at The Economist is to make the magazine (my favorite magazine) look ridiculous by moving adverbs to unacceptably silly positions in the sentence. She is still at work. This is from the December 12 issue, p. 58, in an article about preparations for a referendum next year on whether Britain should abandon its membership in the European Union:
Most pollsters reckon a later vote is likely to boost the leave campaign. Avoidance of delay was a big reason why the government this week pressed the House of Commons swiftly to overturn a House of Lords plan to extend the referendum franchise to 16- and 17-year-olds.
Ryan Kilpatrick has an interesting article in Hong Kong Free Press:
It includes this photograph, which illustrates some of the problems:
I'm pleased to be able to announce on Language Log the winner of the Literary Review's 2015 Bad Sex in Fiction Award. The award went to the singer Morrissey for his debut novel List of the Lost. And it seems to have been honestly earned. The judges cited this sentence:
Eliza and Ezra rolled together into the one giggling snowball of full-figured copulation, screaming and shouting as they playfully bit and pulled at each other in a dangerous and clamorous rollercoaster coil of sexually violent rotation with Eliza's breasts barrel-rolled across Ezra's howling mouth and the pained frenzy of his bulbous salutation extenuating his excitement as it whacked and smacked its way into every muscle of Eliza's body except for the otherwise central zone.
[This is a guest post by Michael Cannings]
This brief news segment features a poster with a lot of interesting points packed into three short lines of text. The billboard is a traffic safety announcement by police in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan.
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[Screengrab with most of the text visible]
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Calvin Ho sent in the following photograph:
During my "Language, Script, and Society in China" class on this past Thursday (10/15/15), I asked the students the following questions:
1. What is your primary method for inputting Chinese characters?
2. What percentage of the time do you use your primary method for inputting Chinese characters?
3. What is your secondary method for inputting Chinese characters?
4. What percentage of the time do you use your secondary method for inputting Chinese characters?
Brian Jongseong Park was recently in Berlin and got to see an art show featuring works from Berlin-based Mauritian artist Djuneid Dulloo, who is a friend of Brian's from school. One work that caught Brian's eye was "Ras Lavi", which is covered in examples of Mauritian Creole:
From Mengnan Zhang:
I found this very interesting image on Facebook. The three columns stand for how to write various terms in Cantonese, their pronunciation, and the meaning of the words listed. As a native speaker of Mandarin, I have no idea what these words are talking about even after reading the meaning of each. Linked back to what our professor had talked about in class, Cantonese is a language, which both script and speech have no correspondence with Mandarin at all.
The phys.org website has a new article that piqued my interest:
"96.7% recognition rate for handwritten Chinese characters using AI that mimics the human brain" (9/17/15)
Stephen Halsey, who is spending the year in Taiwan doing research, observed an interesting linguistic phenomenon that shows the predominance of sound over symbol, even in the writing of Chinese, where the symbols are complex and semantically "heavy" in comparison to phonetic scripts like the Roman alphabet or bopomofo / zhuyin fuhao (Mandarin phonetic symbols), where the symbols are simple and semantically "light".
Ben Zimmer mentioned to me that he was on the Slate podcast Lexicon Valley talking about the origins of the word "gringo":
[This is a guest post by Nathan Hopson]
Amazon's App Store for Android features a free daily app. The selection of a few days ago caught my eye not for the content of the app itself, but for the nonsensical (and incorrect) use of Japanese.