On language

  • The Scottish Parliament website is available in the Scots dialect as well as English. And here’s a general page about Scots, from which you can follow links to “The Soond o Scots” and from there to popular Scottish idioms, including “cock the wee finger,” which is the most quaint way of saying “I’m gonna get hammered” that I’ve ever seen.
  • Debbie Nathan, transplant from Texas to NYC, identifies the fundamentalist, GOP version of “um.” “It is ‘just,'” she says, as in “Lord, we just pray for the police officers. And we just thank you for the great country we live in. We lift up the New York Police Department, and we just thank you for their leaders. In Jesus’ name amen.” I’m from Texas, sort of, and I just have absolutely no idea what she means.
  • German broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW) is celebrating 10 years of online service by adding Klingon to its roster of 30 languages. According to the BBC, “the Klingon pages appear on DW’s web site under the date ‘September 2379’, and describe Germany and the radio station at the start of the 21st Century.” (Thanks to Mick Stingley for the link.)
  • Kevin Arnovitz provides a guide to the language of reality TV at Slate.


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