I saw the above poster today and naturally my eye was drawn to that word: animations.
It needs to be said that this poster probably wasn’t written by a native English speaker, and by animations they probably didn’t mean cartoons, which is what most English speakers would take it to mean. So with that in mind: what do you think animations means here? Continue reading
OK, so as per yesterday, inhibition isn’t really the opposite of exhibition. Of course there’s still a basic relationship of contrast between the two. Continue reading
At the cinema last night, the standard message about the film’s age rating came up, stating that the film was rated suitable for exhibition etc. Fine. At that point though, the couple behind me began to discuss the word exhibition, and its pronunciation. Continue reading
Imagine, completely hypothetically, that the President of Russia had information he could use to blackmail the President of the United States. Crazy, I know, but reading about this possibility recently made me think about the word blackmail. Continue reading
No, it’s not.
Before you ask why, think about why it might not be a fish. Look at it: does it look like a fish? No. Why not? Well, it doesn’t have… fins. And it doesn’t have… gills! And… well look at it! It’s not a fish.
OK, but then: what is a fish? Continue reading
Not the most complicated of creatures, jellyfish. And not the most complicated of words either.
Jelly + fish = jellyfish. Easy. I heard the word during a song this evening, and was struck by its simplicity. But of course I had the feeling that there’d be something interesting, linguistically, about jellyfish.
And so I found myself on the Wikipedia entry for jellyfish. And that was just the beginning… Continue reading
This is another of those classic American/British English differences. Shop is British English, and store is American English. Pretty well known, and nothing too confusing. They both come from slightly different origins, but came fairly logically to mean the same thing. Continue reading