English Language


4 May 2007
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Ever thought how difficult it is to learn the english language.

Can you read these right the first time?

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
6) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to
present the present .
7) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
8) I did not object to the object.
9) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
10) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row .
11) They were too close to the door to close it.
12) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
13) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
14) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
15) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
16) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

We take English for granted.
But if we explore its paradoxes, quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are
square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in
English muffins weren't invented in England or French fries in France.
Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat.
Why do writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers
don't ham?
If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth, beeth?
One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices?
Why can one make amends but not one amend?
If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them,
what do you call it?
If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

English is verbally insane. In what language do people recite at a play and
play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that
run and feet that smell?

How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a
wise guy are opposites?
It is a unique lunacy of a language when your house can burn up as it burns
down, when you can fill in a form by filling it out and when an alarm goes
off by going on.
PS. - Why doesn't "Buick" rhyme with "quick"

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the
creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all.
That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights
are out, they are invisible.

There is a two-letter word that perhaps has more meanings than any other
two-letter word, and that is "UP."
It's easy to understand UP , meaning toward the sky or at the top of the
list, but when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake UP ? At a meeting,
why does a topic come UP? Why do we speak UP and why are the officers UP for
election and why is it UP to the secretary to write UP a report ?
We call UP our friends. And we use it to brighten UP a room, polish UP the
silver, we warm UP the leftovers and clean UP the kitchen. We lock UP the
house and some guys fix UP the old car. At other times the little word has
real special meaning. People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets, work UP
an appetite, and think UP excuses. To be dressed is one thing but to be
dressed UP is special.
This UP is confusing: A drain must be opened UP because it is stopped UP.
We open UP a store in the morning but we close it UP at night.
We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP ! To be knowledgeable about the
proper uses of UP , look the word UP in the dictionary. In a desk-sized
dictionary, it takes UP almost 1/4th of the page and can add UP to about
thirty definitions. If you are UP to it, you might try building UP a list of
the many ways UP is used.
It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don't give UP, you may wind
UP with a hundred or more.
When it threatens to rain, we say it is clouding UP . When the sun comes out
we say it is clearing UP .
When it rains, it wets the earth and often messes things UP. When it
doesn't rain for awhile, things dry UP .
One could go on and on, but I'll wrap it UP , for now time is UP ,
.......... Time to shut UP .....!
One more thing:

What is the first thing you do in the morning & the last thing you do at

Actually, three-quarters of the 'Up's used in the phrases quoted, are really
quite redundant. i.e. we can, plain and simply, call our friends,
brighten a room, polish the silver; and clean the kitchen etc. It is
probably better English anyway.
But still, the extensive usage of the word 'Up' is incredible and the last
U-P is cute.


8 May 2007
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Point Waterfront Durban
weired if you really sit and thing about it hey
7 May 2007
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Got most of them right, I can like to read good engrish. Interesting read though. I always enjoy the little paradoxes of the english language.
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