Tuesday, June 8, 2010

For the love of language

I am thinking of becoming a linguist...
yes i know it is not something you can become, you have to be "gifted"...
but, despite never showing much promise with language, my biggest educational regret is not having stuck at the different languages I had the oportunity to learn. and of course there will be many mistakes and misunderstandings caused by such an endevour, like this one, recounted by George,
On a lighter note, discussing the danger inherent in learning another language, Ed Loving shared an unfortunate episode where a man was recounting that his wife could not bear children:
His first attempt to share this information was, “My wife is inconceivable.” Noting that this was not received well, he tried again: “She is impregnable…” Still facing a great language barrier, he finally tried, “She is unbearable!”
I also don't expect i will ever catch up with those who started when their brains were fresher and more maleable... but if there is one thing I am getting better at with old age, it is turning regrets into motivation for action. As they sing in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: "from the ashes of disaster grow the roses of success!"


  1. "Can't bear children" is at least better than the opposite: "Eats anything, fond of children" reportedly in an advert for a dog ;)

  2. Indeed, although my daughter loves telling people how cats make her dad "sneeze and poo in the garden." Of course I only do the sneezing it is the cats that poo in the garden, but the way she says it makes it sound like it is me!