mbarker: (Default)

One of the evening tv specials had a Japanese title, and an English title for that extra special touch.

The show was mostly about a 19 year old policewoman, who is working in an area with bars and whatnot, so she's seeing some of the best drunks around. Also a mother and daughter team working in a grocery store, picking up shoplifters. And a woman on the Guardian Angels Safety Patrol, working in a popular area at midnight on New Years to help keep things cool.

So the English title was "Ladies in Pandemonium." Which seemed odd to me. So I looked at the Japanese title. Shuraba no onna. Onna is the word for women. But shuraba? I had to look that one up. It's old kanji, with the meaning of fight scene, or scene of carnage? So maybe "Women in Crises" would be a better translation.

Ladies in pandemonium. That's an interesting title. But at least for me, it doesn't really summon images of a policewoman or plain clothes security folks. Or even the Guardian Angels.

Maybe I just don't understand English.

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPad.

mbarker: (BrainUnderRepair)
I'm not sure how helpful this will be for anyone who is trying to learn English as a second language, but I think for those of us who have been scarred by the ordinary approach to teaching English grammar, you might find these postings useful. Suzette Hayden Elgin is a professional linguist, and she is posting pieces from her course on English grammar that starts with the assumption that as native English speakers, you already know the grammar. And by the way, a lot of what is taught as English grammar is rubbish.

Will get you just the postings on American English grammar. Since it's a LiveJournal, the first postings are at the bottom.

I realize grammar isn't something that everyone likes to think about, but take a look. I think you'll find her approach somewhat easier to understand and agree with, even if it does require you to think about that grammar stuff.
mbarker: (BrainUnderRepair)
That was kind of interesting. Last evening we had dinner with a Japanese postdoc who works fairly hard on his English. While we were talking, he admitted to being puzzled about the difference between Halloween and Thanksgiving. Mitsuko (my wife) and I took a moment or two to catch on, and then double-checked. Sure enough, he thought they were the same holiday. And he was fairly sure that other Japanese also thought they were the same.
A short summary of the difference as I understand it )
Interesting confusion. Both are in the fall, and both involve corn and pumpkins. From living in America, they are distinctly different. But from a distance, somehow they got merged.
mbarker: (Me typing?)
Kind of fun (that means I scored well, doesn't it?). Anyway, you can try it at
My results )
I'm not convinced that 40 questions doth a genius make, but it was fun. And spotting my error in the Expert answers interesting. I'm not sure that I agree that farther is for physical measures, while further is for metaphorical usage, but . . .
mbarker: (ISeeYou2)
Just a vagrant itch in an episode of Monk that I saw recently. Sort of a grammatical issue. Which I know I should ignore, but...
little bits )
Perhaps correcting grammar isn't as visually entertaining as some of Monk's other fixations. Still, it seemed a bit odd that he let this slide.

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