Monday, September 22, 2008

Nerd Alert: the Caucaus

I was doing a bit of research into the whole Georgia/South Ossetia and just this simple map, at least, made me think that whatever the larger governments say, the historical and regional makeup of this volatile region has plenty to do with the current conflict.

I miss my cats...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

"A Bit O' Pidgin..."

The English used in Nigeria, as Edward Harris of the AP reports,"has developed over the years with a Nigerian twist."

For example, a TV isn't switched on or off — it's "on-ed" or "off-ed."

A Nigerian congratulating someone on a success or victory will likely "felicitate" him rather than offer felicitations. Similarly, people are invited to "jubilate," or celebrate, a triumph.

Sentence structure often reflects local languages, says Daramola. In the Yoruba language, adjectives can be altered by repeating them. So in Nigerian English a very small boy would be a "small, small boy."

Also, Yoruba English speakers may "smell" soup, rather than taste it, because the words are similar in Yoruba.

"The influence of native languages have combined to make performance a little peculiar," says the introduction to the textbook "Nigerian English," published in 2004. "The Nigerian variant of English seems to have emerged since there are so many influences impinging on its acquisition and use in its new home."

Many words are simply holdovers from the colonial era. Eateries are called "Chop Houses" — once popular but now all but vanished from Britain.

Upset stomach? Take "gripe water." Puncture? Take the tire to the "vulcanizer."

Street children are "urchins," and police often brand criminals as "touts," "rascals," or "miscreants" who carry "cutlasses" — machetes.

In reporting crime, Nigerian newspapers say police open a can of worms when raiding criminal hideouts. A dead or jailed robber is often said to meet his Waterloo. Politicians "heap calumny" on those they accuse of corruption.

In another influence of Nigerian languages, no letter is missed when speaking English. Fuel is FOO-el. A receipt is a "re-seeped," and yacht frequently rhymes with hatched. Wednesday is pronounced exactly as written — Wed-nes-day — and a leopard rhymes with leotard.

City people....

nuff said...

Evidently they make great pets...

This is a capybara. Otherwise known as the worlds largest rodent. Not quite as cute as a guinea pig, but then again, I wonder what kind of disgusting plague ridden mess Big Guy could make in my house... I am not rodent friendly I guess...