Saturday, February 02, 2008

What a great language

Imagine you are trying to learn English, and have to keep up with the meeting or the coffee talk while translating into your own language.

Any chance you might find the following phrases confusing?
  1. Get the project kicked off right
  2. Get kicked right off the project
  1. A shot in the arm
  2. A shot in the head
  1. Throw this idea out there
  2. Throw that idea out
  1. Warming to that idea
  2. Lukewarm to that idea
Be kind and wise when you speak. Part of being kind and wise is to have some sense of whether you can be understood!

2 comments:

JR said...

Yes, I've often thought that being an ESL student must be hellish. Some more examples:

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) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present .
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row .
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

Halfwise said...

That's quite a list of homonyms.