Three Things Thursday; Aged Things

For the first Three Things of the year I’m in my own back yard, for once. So I would like to present for your delection Three Historic…

…cities worth a visit in the UK.

For the first time I’m on a visit home outside of the constricts of work holidays, being currently ‘between jobs.’ This has resulted in a pleasantly extended visit and the opportunity to make a number of day trips. We’ve even fished out the passports and braved the heavily fortified borders of Wales and Scotland for extended adventures.

No, not really. We left the passports at home and snuck over like all the other illegal migrants from England in search of a better life. More


“No tengo lapiz.” Linguistic acquisition and the ESL teacher

언필이없서요 (yonpil-ee obsoyo). A recent addition to my catalogue of chunks of Korean, of which I now know a range, none of which are related to each other enough to form sentences let alone serve any useful, communicative purpose. Meaning, “I don’t have a pencil,” this, like the Spanish phrase for the same dilemma in this post’s title, is the extent of my on-the-job language learning.

The situation is reciprocal. I learn phrases like, “I haven’t got a pencil,” “I’ve finished”, and bathroom,” in the language of the country I’m living in. The under-10s I encounter in those countries in turn learn the words, “TEEEEEacherrrrrr” (with bored / outraged / despairing inflection depending on the situation) “No homework pleeeeeeeaaazzzzz,” and, astonishingly, all the words to the latest Disney / One Direction song (depending on grade level). Neither I nor they seem to get much beyond this point. More

Six Things Sunday!

I’ve been storing up amusing pictures from signs and packaging and it seemed like a good time to release them into the blogosphere. I’ll be eternally gutted that in all the time I spent in South America I failed to take a single photo of entire supermarket aisles of tinned fish labelled, “Fanny”. The level of juvenile hilarity in that one will probably be more obvious to English rather than American readers, but I laughed every time I went shopping for the three years I was there.

I also failed to snap the brand of cracker named, inexplicably, “Kraps.” However, I did capture this little beauty –

P1020422 More

More language and thought

Thirty years false prophets and guides. Here fifteen years useless.

[Unintelligible gobbledygook] I don’t want be a dick.

Do you think I’m a mess?

These gems, as close to verbatim as I can recall, were among the helpful things that helped to procure us a lovely apartment in a funky-looking university area of Seoul. More

Lost in translation

I stayed up late last Sunday to watch the Oscars. I had spent the two weeks prior diligently watching my way through as many of the offerings as I could. I was pleased to see that Games of Destiny was nominated, although I didn’t think Jennifer Lawrence deserved an Oscar over Quvenzhané Wallis. I was also pleased that The Darkest Night, a good film, didn’t get drooled over by the Academy in the way such political films often do. I suppose Argo sandbagged its drool as the other ‘US vs the world’ offering.

Wondering if I’ve got a screw loose like John Malkovich in My boyfriend is a zombie? No, I’m lost in translation. In Peru, in this case, unlike Scarlett Johansson who was – at least in the Spanish speaking world – Lost in Tokyo. Yes, I’m talking film titles in translation. More

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