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"Foreign" language anomalies

A discussion of the peculiarities of languages and the differences between them.

"Foreign" language anomalies

Postby sluggo » Sun Aug 06, 2006 4:27 am

While dining at a Mexican restaurant this eve, my request for some sliced lime was met with quizzical looks. My companion ascribed the waitstaff's uncertainty to her belief that Hispanics (at least those from México and Puerto Rico) make no distinction between lemons and limes, and presumably I hadn't provided them with sufficient information (like, what colour limes?)

I find this hard to believe but stranger words have happened. Can anyone squeeze some light on this :roll: ?
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Postby malachai » Sun Aug 06, 2006 12:02 pm

I believe some cultures do not make the distinction. I noticed this in India as well, fwiw.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:39 pm

Lime = (la) lima
Lemon = (el) limón.

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Postby frank » Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:55 pm

malachai wrote:I believe some cultures do not make the distinction. I noticed this in India as well, fwiw.

Can't say a lot about lemons and limes, but i noticed similar 'confusion' with regards to fruit and veggies. Every year in class -- my students come from all overthe world --, we have a short Babelonic discussion about 'peper' - 'paprika' and sometipes even about 'onion' and 'garlic'. Some people don't make the distinctions we make in Dutch.

F
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Postby sluggo » Sun Aug 06, 2006 7:51 pm

frank wrote:
malachai wrote:I believe some cultures do not make the distinction. I noticed this in India as well, fwiw.

Can't say a lot about lemons and limes, but i noticed similar 'confusion' with regards to fruit and veggies. Every year in class -- my students come from all overthe world --, we have a short Babelonic discussion about 'peper' - 'paprika' and sometipes even about 'onion' and 'garlic'. Some people don't make the distinctions we make in Dutch.

F


Frank, I love that word! Can I borrow it?

Reminds me once again of New Orléans, where you can go into the grocery store and look at scallions, which are labeled "shallots".
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Postby sluggo » Sun Aug 06, 2006 7:53 pm

Brazilian dude wrote:Lime = (la) lima
Lemon = (el) limón.

Brazilian dude


Thanks BD. I suspected it was a brincadeira.
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Postby Stargzer » Sun Aug 06, 2006 9:50 pm

(Stargzer, who don't speech none too good en español, clicks up his favorite online translating service.)

Systranet.com turned this:

lemon

sliced lemon

slices of lemon



lime

sliced lime

slices of lime


into this:

limón

limón rebanado

rebanadas del limón



cal

cal rebanada

rebanadas de la cal


Stargzer could go for Tequila y cal con un cazador del Dos Equis but he'll gladly settle for a Fordham Copperhead Ale. 8)
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Postby malachai » Mon Aug 07, 2006 12:08 pm

I think "cal" refers to the other kind of lime. As in calcium.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Mon Aug 07, 2006 12:54 pm

Malachai is right.

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Postby Stargzer » Mon Aug 07, 2006 9:00 pm

HAH! At least a small dose of cal might keep me from an upset stomach! :D

Hey, you get what you pay for! I guess I'll have to take this particular translation with enough grains of salt to go around the rim of my next Margarita. 8)
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Postby sluggo » Mon Aug 07, 2006 11:20 pm

Stargzer wrote:HAH! At least a small dose of cal might keep me from an upset stomach! :D

Hey, you get what you pay for! I guess I'll have to take this particular translation with enough grains of salt to go around the rim of my next Margarita. 8)


Yo geezer! 999 posts? That's a lot of fencing.
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Postby Stargzer » Tue Aug 08, 2006 9:07 pm

sluggo wrote: . . .
Yo geezer! 999 posts? That's a lot of fencing.
One more to Panjandemonium.
Don't let them do it! Quit while you're ahead! :wink:


Sorry, Sluggo, I wasn't really a Head back in the Sixties, and punchlines aside, I still have all my limbs and torso attached. :) In fact, I now have a rebuilt earlobe! But thanks for putting me over the line, as opposed to over the edge. :wink:
Regards//Larry

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Postby frank » Wed Aug 09, 2006 11:47 am

frank wrote:...we have a short Babelonic discussion about 'peper' - 'paprika'

sluggo wrote:Frank, I love that word! Can I borrow it?


Be my guest :-). I was very surprised that the word doesn't exist in English. In Dutch we use it in connection with the Tower of Babel story (Babelonische spraakverwarring, lit. the "babelonic" confusion/diffusion of languages/speech).
The only instances of 'babelonic' I could find on line seem to be typos for Babylonic, related to Babylon.

F
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Postby anders » Fri Aug 11, 2006 5:13 pm

frank wrote:Babelonische spraakverwarring

In Swedish, babylonisk språkförbistring.
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Postby Spiff » Tue Oct 10, 2006 5:12 am

According to my personal subjective notions and to Van Dale it's "Babylonische spraakverwarring" in Dutch too.
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