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zompist bboard • View topic - I wish English had a word for this!

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:07 pm 
Lebom
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con quesa- firm believer in the right of Spanish cheese to be female if she so chooses

"There's nothing inherently different between knowing who Venusaur is and knowing who Lady Macbeth is" -Xephyr


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Dibotahamdn duthma jallni agaynni ra hgitn lakrhmi.
Amuhawr jalla vowa vta hlakrhi hdm duthmi xaja.
Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 6:37 am 
Niš
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 10:57 am 
Lebom
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When visiting other parts of the world, you can often encounter things that are quite common there for which you have no good English word. Here are some examples of terms that we used amongst ourselves when I was a Peace Corps volunteer. When speaking in English it was not uncommon to change the pronunciation to more closely resemble English.

the gare (Fr. gare routière) /gAr\/ - a centralized parking lot for cross-country taxis awaiting fares.
to deplace a taxi (Fr. (se) deplacer) /deIplAs/ - to buy up all the seats in a taxi so as not to have to wait until all the seats were filled with passengers before you could leave.
to cotizate (Fr. faire une cotisation) /kotIzeIt/ - chip in to share an expense to deplace a taxi or buy a meal.
a pot (Fr.) /poU/ - a plastic cup (or more rarely a bamboo joint) of about one pint volume. The common single unit when purchasing palm wine.
a bidon (Fr.) /bidoUn/ - a large plastic jug. The common bulk unit when purchasing palm wine.
a regime (Fr. régime) /r\eIZim/ - a whole stalk of bananas, as opposed to a small bunch.

coupe-coupe (W. African French patois) /kup kup/ - a cutlass or machete.
daba (W. African French patois) /dAb@/ - a hand plow or short-handled hoe.
pagne (W. African French patois) /pAnj@/ - a single 1x1m square piece of cloth used mainly as a skirt, but with a thousand other uses as well.

maffe tiga (Pulaar) /mAfeI tig@/ - rice with peanut sauce
maffe hakko (Pulaar) /mAfeI hAkoU/ - rice with cassava leaf sauce
(maffe) hakko pute (Pulaar) /hAkoU pu:teI/ - rice with sweet potato leaf sauce

There were probably a lot more, but that's all I can remember right now. I'll have to dig out my old newsletters to see what others I missed.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 1:05 pm 
Sanci
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I'm a fan of Spanish choque...which kinda means a crash or a shock or a clash but it's more than that.
It was a choque to me when I had my first car choque. :o

http://www.spanishdict.com/AS.cfm?e=choque
this seems to think it can be literal only, but the figurative uses are what I like.

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Kegewa nita li alana!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 1:30 pm 
Niš
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"eigentlich". I surely miss "eigentlich". has lots of translations, which means that none of them actually hits the mark.

By the way: "eigen" has entered English scientific language: Eigenvector, eigenvalue, eigen angular frequency, for example. Try this on LEO.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 1:39 pm 
Smeric
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 2:47 pm 
Niš
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:01 pm 
Avisaru
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:17 pm 
Niš
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:19 pm 
Lebom
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Yes, but you don't use the subjunctive as it's used in Romance languages. 8)


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:22 pm 
Sanci
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:28 pm 
Lebom
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:40 pm 
Avisaru
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Last edited by Whimemsz on Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 3:42 pm 
Sanci
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 4:04 pm 
Sumerul
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Dibotahamdn duthma jallni agaynni ra hgitn lakrhmi.
Amuhawr jalla vowa vta hlakrhi hdm duthmi xaja.
Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro. Irdro.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 4:45 pm 
Niš
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My addition, even though it has some equivalents (I think) in English:

Swedish att fula sig, lit. "to ugly (verb) oneself". Perhaps a more understandable translation would be "to behave in an ugly manner". What it means is that you are making some kind of joke (a mean joke that is) and/or doing some kind of imitation. Or it could mean that you're behaving weirdly. An example:

Persons A and B are laughing and imitating, say, mentally disabled people, which they find terribly amusing. Person C comes over and does not get what they're doing.

C: "Vad gör ni?"
"What are you doing?"

A: "Äh, vi bara fulade oss lite."
"Eh, we just uglied ourselves a bit."

... God that looks weird when translated literaly (sp?) :P I guess you could translate it as "fooling around", but fula sig definatly has an undertone of mean humour.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 5:01 pm 
Sanno
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