Have you ever been "Yank Bashed"?

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by MegaDick, May 13, 2007.

  1. MegaDick

    MegaDick New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Messages:
    97
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Louisiana
    Recently I was attempting to chat with a "Brit" who used a word I didn't understand -- soz. When I asked what it meant, he laughed and informed me that "he spoke proper English and I didn't." I replied, what do you expect? I'm American, therefore I speak American. "Exactly, you speak a corrupted form of English."

    I decided to ignore his rudeness and attempted to continue the conversation, but 2 lines later he stated that "hybridize" was spelled "hybridise" and continued to criticize American speech. At this point, my patience was expended, so I tossed out a couple of choice proper English phrases I had learned from BBC and left him to ponder their merit.

    Curious, I searched the few posts he had made, and found both grammatical and spelling errors in them.

    Has this particular form of ethnocentrism reared its ugly head at anyone else?
     
  2. dong20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6,130
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    The grey country
    Actually, he's wrong and the 'z' spelling is (with some exceptions) technically correct though it's rarely used in the UK except in high academia and formerly, in the Times newspaper. All he did was expose his ignorance. Soz is regional slang for sorry if you haven't found out yet; was he from the NW of England? That's where I've heard it most.

    BTW no such language as American per se, it's just English or perhaps American English, much the same as Australian English or any other derivation is; i.e. the same langauge just with many minor variations. Enjoy it, I think it's the most versatile and flexible language on the planet.
     
  3. dongalong

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Messages:
    5,299
    Likes Received:
    1,711
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Paris (FR)
    I'm British and I have trouble understanding some "Yank" words.
    I think that we are lucky that English has become the International language because it is constantly evolving and becoming richer, Aussies, Yanks, Carribeans etc. are inventing new words all the time, it is impossible to know every slang English word in existence.
    Many American phrases are used by Brits who speak proper English too, we aren't all like him.

    That person sounds like a typical snob, putting people down to feel superior, there are fuckwits in every country!
     
  4. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Yes. I'm American and in my travels abroad have sometimes been pre-judged guilty of every sin of humanity.
     
  5. Lordpendragon

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2004
    Messages:
    3,880
    Likes Received:
    1
    Don't take it too hard - the Brits like to take the piss out each other and anyone else if they get on with them. We seldom mean any harm by it - and you guys are more sensitive or rather just not used to it.
     
  6. dong20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6,130
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    The grey country
    So what's your problem? You are.:tongue:
     
  7. MegaDick

    MegaDick New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Messages:
    97
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Louisiana
    BTW no such language as American per se, it's just English or perhaps American English, much the same as Australian English or any other derivation [/quote]


    Actually American is considered an English dialect. I did not imply it was a separate language.
     
  8. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    lol. True, but I was disappointed when the accusations weren't expressed cleverly and indirectly. Blunt disapproval is so....American. :smile:

    I'm just stirring the pot, though. Truth be known, I've been treated quite courteously while abroad, despite my cowboy hat, broad mustache and spurs. I don't take the odd disparaging comment about Yanks personally.
     
  9. dong20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6,130
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    The grey country
    Yes it is, that's I said when I wrote:

    I should perhaps have used dialect but derivation came to mind first....

    You said :

    You didn't qualify that as American English and while I didn't take that as implying you believed American was a de facto language I'd say the implication is there.
     
  10. dong20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6,130
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    The grey country
    I get the same, Brits (like most nations) are also stereotyped. 90%+ of the time I ignore it because 90%+ of the time it's untrue. When it's true I'll hold my hand up or my head down, depending on the circumstance at hand.:smile:
     
  11. D_Gunther Snotpole

    D_Gunther Snotpole Account Disabled

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Messages:
    14,610
    Likes Received:
    5
    I notice that in some French translations from books written by Americans, they write: “traduit de l’américan” (“translated from the American”).
    As though, for them, American is virtually a language unto itself.
     
  12. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Much the same here.

    (and I also keep handy a set of small maple leaf flag lapel pins I can quickly don, given to me by friendly Canadian backpackers concerned about my well being :smile: )
     
  13. dong20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6,130
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    The grey country
    I can't help but think that's often more political than linguistic in origin.:tongue:
     
  14. dannymawg

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    1,121
    Likes Received:
    3
    Eh... splitting hairs, as your sig seems to maybe have been recently adjusted to reflect, MegaDick. It is all about dialect. Kinda like trying to argue the international differences in football. It's still a game, with a ball, with rules made to national and sometimes even regional tastes.

    But the message is the same in all variants: make the damn play :biggrin1:
     
  15. ManlyBanisters

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    12,807
    Likes Received:
    8
    Yes - I thnik dong20 may be right..

    And believe me - it isn't just the Americans they have a go at about that either - try being Irish. Fuck 'em - their Empire fell apart 60 years ago and they haven't got over it yet, they try to deal with it with that kind of crappy superiority guff.
    Still - there are plenty of decents Brits out there, they're called the Scots and the Welsh...
     
  16. CUBE

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Messages:
    7,328
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    1,163
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    The OC
    There is Standard English and Proper English...even American Standard and American Proper. Language changes. There is actually the Blue Ridge Mountain region that is supposed to be the closest to an Old English sound...even closer to the modern day British. I think, Megadick, you must have a large penis, and you should use it to challenge anyone who questions you.. :)
     
  17. Principessa

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Messages:
    19,494
    Likes Received:
    28
    Gender:
    Female
     
  18. B_big dirigible

    B_big dirigible New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Some linguists believe that it's the other way 'round - that American English has degraded less since the colonial period than have the various forms spoken in England. This has even been mentioned on this very forum before, inspiring the expected squeals of outrage.

    The spelling divergences seem to be the fault of Noah Webster and his abortive attempt to regularize spelling. Hence wagon/waggon, color/colour, reflection/reflexion, civilization/civilisation, paleontology/palaeontology. Post-Revolution neologisms are different, such as names for parts of cars (one never drives in America with a "fully laden boot"), tools (Whitworth spanners, ugh) and electronic components (we don't have "thermionic valves" or "condensors" here). It's not obvious that this should have happened, considering the colossal quantities of books and newspapers (though not so much magazines) which routinely cross the Atlantic. Publishing has its own peculiarities, though. Smith's story of the discovery of the coelacanth, Latimeria, was published in the US as Search Beneath the Sea, and at the same time in England as Old Fourlegs - but just why isn't at all clear, as (excepting only the titles) the texts are identical in all ways, down to the punctuation.

    The two languages are essentially identical, far more so than, say, Russian and Ukrainian, which don't even have identical alphabets. It's not easy to argue that they're even dialects. The higher-class the writing, the harder the two are to distinguish. American writers try a bit harder, perhaps, than their English counterparts, to write to a common standard. In England one would never confuse articles written for the Times with those written for an automotive magazine. As one moves down the sociological ladder some peculiarities emerge, such as the dearth of commas, and the addition of exclamation points at the ends of sentences to clue readers in that the author has just cracked a joke. You won't see that in the Times or in general American writing.

    But, I suppose it would make sense to just start calling it American, as that's where most of the speakers are. The UK, Republic of Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Trinidad, Belize, the Philippines, and maybe some enclaves in Argentina have most of the native speakers, and of course by far the most populous of those is the US [English speakers - not the greatest population overall -- Ed.]. It's all a lot of excitement over a language which I believe is, in fact, a creole, or a naturalized pidgin.
     
  19. madame_zora

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2004
    Messages:
    10,252
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Ohio
    On a somewhat related note, I used to love it when the cave dwelling creatures I grew up with used to ask me if I speak Mexican. They seemed completely unaware out in "the country" that any other possibility existed if a person wasn't either African or caucasian.:rolleyes: Of course, I got to watch their heads explode when I explained that I was from a country called India in a land far, far away, and Mexican isn't a language anyway.
     
  20. ManlyBanisters

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    12,807
    Likes Received:
    8
    Blue Ridge Mountain - I went to school in Dublin - and we were taught the the Hiberno-English was a more grammatically exact form of the language - I think you'll find teachers in Aus explaining why the Aussie form is best, and teachers in Torronto explaining why 'aboot' is a more exact pronunciation - in short - it is all a load of BS. There are many different types of English and they are all of the 'now'. None of them more or less 'correct' than the others...

    And what do you mean by OLD ENGLISH anyway? Beowulf is in Old English - do they talk like that? Or do you mean the more medieval Middle English - as in Chaucer? Or do you mean early Modern English? Like Shakespeare (you probably do, I know I'm being pedantic!)

    Plus - there is no such language as modern day British... never was a British language - there have been various languages used as a lingua france across Britain and the surrounding isles - Latin, vairous Celtic dialects, French, English - but to the best of my (vast and large headed) knowledge - never 'British'
     
Draft saved Draft deleted