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Our new lingustic acquisitions from the Polish forums


pawian 157 | 9,104
17 Feb 2019  #1
One of the reasons I participate in the fora here and elsewhere is the opportunity of learning new words, phrases, expressions. Yes, that`s because I know that my English sucks: I am old and I acquired the language in communist times when original sources were scarce and I had to depend mostly on BBC and Newsweek/Times magazines from second hand bookshops.

But I fully realise my deficiencies and feel the need to make up for them. Hence, my presence here, among others.

It is a fascinating thing to see how the language has been changing over the years, it almost acts like a living creature, in my opinion.

What new words have I already learnt since my come back after a long break?

One of the most frequently ones used today is weasel.. E..g, weasel words, weasel out of sth. I don`t remember seeing them so often in the past.

I pass this test without any yeahbuts, howevers, ontheotherhands, or other weasel words.

I hate liberals and weasels so much

These Euro weasels lost it.

Thank you guys, I am really grateful, keep enlightening me like that.

tbc
Rich Mazur 4 | 2,876
17 Feb 2019  #2
What do you mean by "guys"? It's all thanks to me.
Your English is actually too perfect. To my knowledge, no American ever said "fora" as plural for forum.
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
17 Feb 2019  #3
What do you mean by "guys"? It's all thanks to me.

Yes, indeed. my gratitude for weasel depends solely on 3 quotes from your posts. I really appreciate it and now I am serious.

But you are a much Richer source than that. Yesterday, I admonished a student who had written obligated in his essay, suggested it is a direct copy from Polish (zobligowany) and advised him to use obliged. .

that I am obligated to submit it

Now I am checking the sources and it seems I will have to apologise to him next week:

As a matter of fact, "obligated" is related to something ou have to do, regardless of your interest or not in doing this. "Obliged" has to do with your moral responsability. "Obliged" is something you need to do because you would feel uncomfortable in not doing. "Obligated" is something that make you feel uncomfortable in doing as it is something someone else has decided you should do.

painintheenglish.com/case/1669

they can badger the hell out of you

persuade someone by telling them repeatedly to do something, or to question someone repeatedly:
Stop badgering me - I'll do it when I'm ready.


have actually bent over backwards to support these states.

To exert a lot of effort towards some end. This phrase is often used to express frustration when one's efforts go unrecognized. I have been bending over backwards to make sure that you have a wonderful visit, and you don't even care! The entire staff really needs to bend over backwards while the CEO is visiting our office.

idioms.thefreedictionary.com/bend+over+backwards

when you have their ears pinned to the wall
Nice saying.

they minimize, obfuscate, and deflect like the pussies

Obfuscate. It sounds funny to a Polish ear - not like an English word but more like Polish due to this cluster of obf. Obwarować - surround a site with walls.

Probably of Latin origin. Never heard it before.

To make so confused or opaque as to be difficult to perceive or understand: "A great effort was made ... to obscure or obfuscate the truth" (Robert Conquest).
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
17 Feb 2019  #4
Well, I ignored Random Chat on most occasions before because I thought it a complete waste of time.
Now I see I am going to visit it more frequently because it is a mine of useful idioms some of which are worth looking at more closely. E.g,

When you turn the tables on them they go silent

to change a situation so that you now have an advantage over someone who previously had an advantage over you: She turned the tables on her rival with allegations of corruption.

What is the life situation that might have produced this idiom? I somehow associate it with gambling, playing cards at a table. ?

It's almost like you are thumbing your nose at the Moderators.

Another good one, in Polish it is playing on your nose to sb.

Also, I ran into libtards a few times. First I was puzzled and it took me a while to guess that it is a compound of liberal and two possibilites arise now: retards or bastards. I have no idea which one is prefered, probably both are correct.

I find the usage of it utterly fascinating because people who use it follow the manner of Soviet, i.e. Russian communist propaganda which loved to create such compounds from shortened words, mostly 2 but sometimes 3 or even 4.

E.g., do you know that kolkhoz is such a compound?

a contraction of коллективное хозяйство, collective ownership, kollektivnoye khozaystvo)

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kolkhoz
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
17 Feb 2019  #5
like swarm of flies attracted to sh!t pile ,consuming delightfully

:):):) I can`t help laughing, some comparisons are so wonderfully vivid, I virtually see them before my eyes. Remind me of a famous Polish cartoonist`s scandalous works - Andrzej Mleczko, I mean.

Thanks, guys. I promise I will remember them all and even try to use one day.

Have you ever thought you would become educators in life?



Chemikiem 6 | 1,799
18 Feb 2019  #6
One of the most frequently ones used today is weasel.

I've heard this often too, but only by the Pol-ams or those living in the US. It's not so commonly used by the British.

I ran into libtards a few times

I've only ever heard it on this forum, and usually by those whose opinions are slightly to the right of Genghis Khan :D

two possibilites arise now: retards or bastards.

Retards.
Rich Mazur 4 | 2,876
18 Feb 2019  #7
Don't forget liberal. This term morphed from a compliment into an insult even liberals reject because liberal, as a noun, became synonymous with fascist - an intolerant and violent piece of human excrement, typically found on the American campuses where they profess freedom of speech as long as that speech is approved by liberals.

When the unapproved speaker is finally allowed to speak, usually with police escort, liberals seek what we call safe spaces, where they play with fluffy little bears while planning a riot or other forms of vandalism to protest the unapproved speaker.

Just one more thing. Liberals are not capable of being patriots and have lost their instinct of self-preservation. The classical fascists, on the other hand, are patriotic and able to protect their women, property, and homelands. Hence, liberals and fascists complement each other.
Lyzko 20 | 6,334
18 Feb 2019  #8
Foreigners often know English grammar better than English native speakers, it's in the idiomatic vernacular and register that they fall down on the job:-)
Ironside 47 | 9,624
18 Feb 2019  #9
I don`t remember seeing them so often in the past.

Problems with memory? I called you a weasel few years back.
Rich Mazur 4 | 2,876
18 Feb 2019  #10
Foreigners often know English grammar better than English native speakers,

And that is why they are so f***ing boring with that straight-from-school manner of speech. The real charm is in the deliberate bending and distorting.

Plus that damn foreign accent. As soon as one shows up on TV, I grab the remote. Even if he is from the UK. Or an "African-American".
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #11
Problems with memory? I called you a weasel few years back.

No, I only remember how you supported communism in Poland and defended communists. That was strange but I think I will get used to it.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Feb 2019  #12
I find the usage of it utterly fascinating because people who use it follow the manner of Soviet, i.e. Russian communist propaganda

I've had an entertaining discussion with a very well known and respected Polish academic on this topic, and he said the same thing as you. He gave many examples of the "language of the right" mirroring Soviet discourse, even down to the demonisation of political opponents through the use of combative language.

What's particularly interesting is how they have a very specific phrasebook - "deep state" is a particular favourite, but also "dark money".
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #13
And that is why they are so f***ing boring with that straight-from-school manner of speech.

Well, I am in two minds about it. Classy language, not smeared with slang or colloqiualisms, is always pleasant to listen to or read. I mentioned Newsweek which for a few years in 1980s maintained a sophisticated level of the language. Then sth changed and imagine my shock when I once read about Hollyfield`s fight: "took a few pokes on the proboscis" I was so horrified that I stopped buying the magazine.

I have always liked to listen to debates in the British Parliament. Some politicians and MPs use beautiful English, even better than the Queen.

But after a while, this formal language becomes boring, indeed and one needs to change into idiomatic and slang.

The best is to know and use both, depending on the needs.
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
18 Feb 2019  #14
I ran into libtards a few times

It was introduced to PF by a poster called Dolno (Ancestor of the mighty Khan) In march 2016

urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Libtard
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #15
It was introduced to PF by a poster called Dolno

Did he/she invent it or copy?

Your English is actually too perfect. To my knowledge, no American ever said "fora" as plural for forum.

Thank you but you are too kind to me.
Because that fora is my babcia`s merit. I was very little when she told me: "Dear boy, we rustics have no land, property and wealth like our szlachta landlords, but there is something we can be equal in - beautiful language." Following her advice, every day, after labour in the fields, I hid in the bushes next to the mansion and listened to noble people talking in upper style. Sometimes they hosted guests from foreign countries so I heard and absorbed other languages too. Occasionally they spotted me and shouted: Fora ze dwora! It was then when I learnt the word. I will never forget our benevolent lords and how much I learnt from them.
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
18 Feb 2019  #16
Did he/she invent it or copy?

I think she found it and looked it up on the urban dictionary.
Rich Mazur 4 | 2,876
18 Feb 2019  #17
But after a while, this formal language becomes boring,

It's like looking at an amazingly beautiful woman. It's soooo much fun until you realize it's a robot made in Japan. Always smiling. Always polite. And ready to have sex any time of day and night. Would you like to be married to her?
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #18
Can I have both: real and man-made? Preferably both Japanese....
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
18 Feb 2019  #19
Can I have both: real and man-made?

Be careful what you wish for they might get it on and kick you out of bed
Rich Mazur 4 | 2,876
18 Feb 2019  #20
At least one would have an ON-OFF switch. The other one you would have to gag and tie up.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Feb 2019  #21
I mentioned Newsweek which for a few years in 1980s maintained a sophisticated level of the language.

Hold on, hold on. How on earth did you get access to Newsweek in the 1980s? I think you've got some stories to tell about life in those days, Pawian!

I have always liked to listen to debates in the British Parliament. Some politicians and MPs use beautiful English, even better than the Queen.

I do like how the Speaker, John Bercow speaks. He's very deliberate with his speech, which he uses for great comic effect.
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #22
At least one would have an ON-OFF switch.

But those switches tend to break.

How on earth did you get access to Newsweek in the 1980s?

Well, I said in my first post I got them from second hand bookshops. I read them in full, especially articles about Poland and communist block, translated the words and later memorised them. I still have those magazines.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Feb 2019  #23
Well, I said in my first post I got them from second hand shop.

But...in the 1980's?!
Miloslaw 6 | 1,815
18 Feb 2019  #24
I do like how the Speaker, John Bercow speaks. He's very deliberate with his speech, which he uses for great comic effect

Yeah,but very often he is the subject of our laughter.....
The man is a disgusting specimen of humanity....
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Feb 2019  #25
He seems to be doing a pretty decent job of making sure that Parliament has its say on things.
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #26
But...in the 1980's?!

What is wrong with it? Delph, I mentioned it a few times that I am old. I wasn`t born 15 years ago.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Feb 2019  #27
What is wrong with it?

I'm just hugely shocked that such magazines could be found in second hand shops back then!

Having said that, I discovered recently that English was actually taught in quite a few high schools back then, which was a surprise. I knew that it was taught in the best of the best, but it seems that it was much more common than an outsider would expect.
Miloslaw 6 | 1,815
18 Feb 2019  #28
He seems to be doing a pretty decent job of making sure that Parliament has its say on things

I disagree,he is doing a pretty decent job of thwarting what The British people voted for.
He ain't gonna gain much love there.
OP pawian 157 | 9,104
18 Feb 2019  #29
I'm just hugely shocked that such magazines could be found in second hand shops back then!

Nothing strange in it. Embassy workers sold old magazines to bookshops. Poles who came back fromr foreign trips could bring them too.
Yes, English was taught, not as widely as Russian but it was. Magazines weren`t enough, you needed more formal education. :)

I disagree,he is doing a pretty decent job of thwarting what The British people voted for.

He seems to feel good being in the centre of interest, he would make a good actor, priest or teacher.

youtube.com/watch?v=d1N3F7haZWs
Miloslaw 6 | 1,815
18 Feb 2019  #30
Lol!! Yes!!
He chose the wrong vocation..... :-)


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