Posts Tagged ‘Language’

Six year old Angie and her four year old brother, Joel, were sitting together in church. Joel giggled, sang and talked out loud. Finally, his big sister had had enough. “You’re not supposed to talk out loud in church.” “Why? Who’s going to stop me?” Joel asked. Angie pointed to the back of the church and said, “See those two men standing by the door? They’re hushers.”-  Liguorian magazine, The Lighter Side column

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Fun With Language

Posted: October 23, 2013 in Fun with words
Tags: ,

Saw this sign in a train station. Once again, a few missing letters can create a whole new meaning!

Fun-with-Language-I-die-room

“Shorthand” the writing of common English words eliminating letters has been around for decades. So has jargon and slang that use words specific to an industry or social group. But with the advent of texting, and Twitter, you could say new modern “languages” have been born.

Twitter is really more like a word game. It challenges you to communicate within the confines of its 140 character limitation. Sort of like a journalist having to come up with a good short headline for a story. Only on Twitter you can contract words, leave out letters, or use words that are familiar with your readers but which other groups wouldn’t understand. (Read some of Lady Gaga’s Tweets and you’ll get the idea – who the heck are “little Monsters”???!)

Texting doesn’t put a limit on characters or the number of words but like old fashioned shorthand, it is easier to type a message using special words or leaving out letters. I believe this grew from the fact that your keyboard is so tiny, eliminating keystrokes makes typing the message easier. It took me forever to learn how to “thumb” a message (using my other fingers was a nightmare) and I still am amazed when I see a man with huge “paws” entering a message quickly on a tiny device!

 The result is that people have become so used to communicating in this “shorthand” language, that even at a full sized computer keyboard they don’t want to type out full words. Young people have an especially hard time switching from shorthand to normal English. This, of course, impedes communications such as work related correspondence or creating a job search cover letter that sounds professional.

It has also created what used to be called “slang”, words specific to a certain subculture, that are not in the dictionary. First is was using letters to describe things like the infamous LOL. Then it morphed into respelling words so they were shortened like substituting the numeral 4 instead of spelling “for”. Or getting real cre8tive just for the heck of it. Of course there are the totally new words like “hash tag” that in itself spawned “bashtagging” (bashing a company on Twitter using its own hash tag). Or giving a word another meaning for example a “Tweet” once meant only the sound a bird makes! Good or bad? Well, it’s always been said that language is a living thing and changes over time. We don’t speak the way they did in Shakespeare’s day, so why not #change?

Here are a few websites that will have you laughing, (or should I say twittering) or teach you a thing or two about these new “languages”:

Mashable’s Twitterspeak

A dictionary of Twitter words

For texting there are just too many good ones. So type “texting vocabulary” into your search engine of choice and have fun surfing the results!

If there is every a group of people who know how to have fun with language it is boat owners. Check out the clever use of English words to make a statement:

ALL GULLS NO BOUYS

Anchor Management

Latitude Adjustment

Loon-A-Sea

D-Hyd-O-Way

D-RANGED

Dont Panic (written upsidedown)

Weather or Knot

Seas the Day

Reel Time

What a difference abbreviations can make! Placing these 2 links right after each other had me howling:

The dogs of Westminster: Meet Jewel, an American Foxhound

Some vets crying foul over SEAL’s claims

OK, we do know that the vets are war veterans and the SEAL’s are Navy but on my first quick scan, which is what people do on the internet, I scratched my head as to what could be wrong with seals!

 

This word would be especially useful to us senior folks!

Exhaustipated: Just too tired to give a shit.

All of these are companies that didn’t spend quite enough time considering how their online names might appear – and be misread…

Who Represents is where you can find the name of the agent that represents any celebrity. Their Web site is
www.whorepresents.com/

Experts Exchange is a knowledge base where programmers can exchange Advice and views at
www.expertsexchange.com/

Looking for a pen? Look no further than Pen Island at
www.penisland.net 

Need a therapist? Try Therapist Finder at
www.therapistfinder.com/ – they changed to http://www.counselingcalifornia.com/

And don’t forget the Mole Station Native Nursery in New South Wales,
www.molestationnursery.com/ – this one’s been redirected to a another site that is “under construction”

The First Cumming Methodist Church Web site is
www.cummingfirst.com/ – they had the sense to sell it to…a site that talks about gay issues!

And the designers at Speed of Art await you at their wacky Web site,
www.speedofart.com/they spell it out on the home page that it’s really Speed of Art

This list was sent to me over a year ago. I check all of them. It’s amazing to discover that only a few had the sense to ditch their bad domain name!