A fierce debate has been going on for sometime over on the Grammar Girl group at LinkedIn. I have enjoyed it emmensely. And, actually, it’s not fierce. It’s acutally quite fun. With lots of lighthearted anecdotes and gentle remarks to one another.
The discussion is about pronouns.
Gender neutral pronoouns, to be exact. Should we use he, she it — or they — when we are speaking about a singular person whose gender we do not know? And, to complicate this a bit further, what about when the gender of the person is ambiguous? Genderqueer. It’s all so complicated.
Yesterday, my status said “LOL turned 25 the other day.” A friend tagged me in a selfie and posted it to my wall. Then someone unfriended me. Was it because of the selfie? Or because they were offended that I posted “LOL turned 25″.
I meant, of course, that LOL literally turned 25. I’m of course much, much older.
Did You Know That Many English Words Come from Arabic?
It’s true. Some of the most common words we use are Arabic in origin. We thought it might be fun to do a little quiz to see if you could tell which of the following groups of words are Arabic in origin. In each group, two are Arabic and one is not. Guess which word is not Arabic, and you are allowed to think you’re smart.
Languages are Our Passion — And Our Work
…and Other American Linguistic Oddities
“Those who seek stability in English seldom find it; those who wish for uniformity become laughingstocks.” — Richard W. Bailey
Foreign Language MarketingMany companies use a foreign language to reach out to new clients, but sometimes they neglect to check the accuracy of their translations. For example, consider the case of a German beverage manufacturer that launched a raffle promotion that would award backpacks to the winners. But instead of referring to the prizes as knapsacks or rucksacks, the company’s translated text used the word for body bags. Their intention to attract buyers through a promotion had the opposite effect — all because of the mistranslation of a simple word.
Save yourself that embarrassment and work with a professional German to English translator.
Mexico is an amazing country with a diverse culture and friendly locals. The beaches are beautiful and the food is outstanding. Contrary to what some in the United States think, Mexico is actually a fairly safe place to travel, as long as you use common sense. We have compiled a list of do’s and don’ts that should make any trip to Mexico, whether for business or recreation, safe and memorable:
1. Do learn a few Spanish phrases before your trip. Knowing the basics, such as “hello, please, bless you, goodbye, excuse me, where is the…, etc” will make it much easier to communicate with locals if you need assistance. More importantly, Mexicans tend to appreciate it when a tourist at least attempts to speak their language, and you will typically find they are more willing to help you if they see you’ve respected their culture by learning some basic phrases.
Don’t limit yourself only to the touristy areas! Even if you are there for business, try to get outside of the hotel/resort parts of town and explore some authentic Mexican culture. These areas are often safer than the touristy ones because there will be fewer opportunistic criminals running around. As long as you stay alert and continue to use common sense, you should be fine. Your adventurous spirit will be rewarded with (among other things) an abundance of authentic, delicious, and inexpensive cuisine!
Get a Free Quote