May 15, 2004  •  goossun

ta-ta & ho-ho

You guys have seen Oliver Stone’s JFK? What do “ta-ta” and “ho-ho” mean in this phrase? “You got the right ta-ta, but the wrong ho-ho”. It’s from the court sequence. I do understand what it means it the sense it is used in the film, just wonder what these two words are coming from.

May 11, 2004  •  goossun

Oral vs. Aural

Do you pronounce “oral” and “aural” differently? How then?

May 10, 2004  •  goossun


Can one say “Bemartyred”? I am translating the name of an ancient Mesopotamian myth who is sacrificed for growth and rebirth of nature and in there was ceremny in which he was annually killed or “martyred”. I have once seen the word, “Beknighted” and though it could be made so for martyr as well if it doesn’t already exist.

May 9, 2004  •  goossun


What does the G stand for in “G-string”? (besides covering part of the ass:)

May 9, 2004  •  goossun


I have once violated the English language. I made this tittle for one of my photos. Just wonder if it is not totally wrong. The tittle was “Irreddenable blue” and I meant a blue colour that cannot be redden. I had thought to myself that I must use “ir” to twist a word which begins with an R. Could that be OK? Would you forgive me for that?

May 6, 2004  •  goossun

Isn’t it odd?

Is it correct to say “odditiness”? I mean like odd, oddity and then “odditiness”.

April 29, 2004  •  goossun


What’s “semtex”? It’s here in a song by Roger Waters.

April 28, 2004  •  goossun


What does “gerontophile” means?

April 27, 2004  •  carrie

What does this mean?: “IF only she were mine”

If your boyfriend leaves a testimonial on the web that says “Oh so beautiful!! If only she were mine :-) ” Is that mean... I am not his, or wish that I will be his forever. Very confused! Bascially, I am his girlfriend now.

April 26, 2004  •  goossun

English schools

I had a talk to Speedwell on finding a good English school in NYC. Then I thought we could discuss this issue broadly, meaning sharing our knowledge on the schools and more importantly on the different method each of us might know. For instance, I’m learning Danish now and I go to a school whose method was taken and adapted from an American method used in Korea to teach the Korean soldiers English. It’s a totally brain-wash method based on military attitude, but it works. It really does. It’s thus, don’t worry what it means, just keep repeating with correct accent and you’ll get it; and you’ll understand what it means later. It must first sound correct! And you should tune-in to be able to hear and understand the very native speakers. Unfortunately Americans don’t teach English in Korea anymore, otherwise I know which school to go to!

April 23, 2004  •  goossun

Following the Joe

After the last post, I was thinking where is “Jack ass” coming from. Who’s the “Jack” in this case?

April 19, 2004  •  goossun

Who’s this Joe?

I’ve read it here: “and the president (Bush, of course) kind of, as he’s inclined to do, says ‘Nice try, but that isn’t gonna sell Joe Public. That isn’t gonna convince Joe Public,’ says Woodward.” Is “Joe Public” just an indirect reference to the public or this Joe has some more to do with some specific “Joeish” thing?

April 19, 2004  •  goossun


I just wonder how does one say this phrase: “Let me know the 411″. Do we say “Let me know the four-one-one” or “Let me know the four-hundred-eleven” or what? Note: I know that 411 is information number, just don’t know how one says it.

April 14, 2004  •  goossun


Which one is correct: “I sent a SMS” or “I sent an SMS”? Do we pronounce the letter S, “ess” or what? I also wonder if it is correct to say “I took an Xray photo” or “... a Xray photo”.

April 2, 2004  •  Dyske

There is no such a thing as...

I was under the impression that this is wrong, that you do not say, “no such a thing”, that the proper way is “no such thing as.” But, I recently came across a few instances of this used by professional writers with the article ‘a’. Does this mean you could technically have the article?

March 12, 2004  •  derek

Pet Peeves

Where did the expression “pet peeve” come from?

February 26, 2004  •  goossun

More than a pain in the English!

I’ve read this “old gag” in an Interview with Hitchcock and did not have a damn clue what it could be. Can anybody help? Hitch says: “A for ism, B for brooks, C for Ilander, D for dumb, F for vessence, H for pension, I for Novello, J for orange, K f’rancis, L for leather, M fa size, I’ve forgotten what N’s for. O for the wings of dove. P for relief. Q for food. R fuh mo! S for you. T for two. U fa films. V va la France. W. I can’t remember W. X for breakfast. Y for God’s sake. And Z f’r winds.” I actually get the M, P, T and Y. But what are the rest referring to?

February 17, 2004  •  goossun


What’s the difference between “irrepresentablity” and “unrepresentablity”? I saw these two in a translation of Jacques Derrida’s and he has a very careful language. So he must meant two different things.

February 16, 2004  •  goossun

Weird name

Does anybody possibly know what Gimp means? I’m talking about the creature in Pulp Fiction at the Mason-Dixie Pawshop, The wo/man dressed in black leather bondage gear. S/he’s called Gimp. Remember? Is it a nick name or what?

February 10, 2004  •  goossun


Why is, in some of the English texts of the last century, the word, PEOPLE capitalized and written as PEOPLES? Just wonder when it became a single word without a plural form? I mean we write: “People are stupid.” But you can’t say today: “PeopleS are nice.” Right? Any idea?

  2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10  

Recently Discussed

If anyone else were...  —October 5, 2015, 4:53pm

On Tomorrow  —October 5, 2015, 4:40pm

“This is she” vs. “This is her”  —October 5, 2015, 11:17am

Pronunciation: aunt  —September 28, 2015, 10:14am

“all but” - I hate that expression!  —September 25, 2015, 2:41pm

Why do we have “formal” English?   —September 24, 2015, 2:17pm

waiting on  —September 24, 2015, 2:07pm

“This Wednesday” vs. “Next Wednesday”  —September 24, 2015, 1:59pm

“escaped prison” or “escaped from prison”?   —September 24, 2015, 1:53pm

How does one debate a person?  —September 24, 2015, 1:48pm