Friday, March 14, 2014

Quirky English

Let's face it: English is an odd language. 
There is no egg in an eggplant 
No ham in hamburgers 
And neither pine nor apple in a pineapple. 
A guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. 
French fries are claimed by the Belgians, not the French. 
And boxing rings are definitely square. 

If lawyers can be disbarred and clergymen defrocked, 
shouldn't it follow that electricians may be delighted, 
musicians denoted, cowboys deranged, models deposed, 
and dry cleaners depressed? 
Now if writers write, how come fingers don't fing. 
Since the plural of tooth is teeth 
Shouldn't the plural of phone booth be phone beeth 
And in the same way, that, during my youth, teachers taught, 
Why didn't the preacher praught. 

Most people take English for granted 
But if we examine its paradoxes we find that 
Quicksand takes us down slowly 
And when stating that four men out of five suffer from headaches, 
It doesn’t imply that the fifth one enjoys it. 
Knowing that a vegetarian eats vegetables 
doesn’t tell what a humanitarian eats!? 
Could someone explain why people do recite at a play 
And yet play at a recital. 
Or why Americans park on driveways 
And drive on parkways 
Or how can the weather be as hot as hell on one day, 
And as cold as hell on another one 

Shouldn’t we wonder at the unique lunacy 
Of a language where a house can burn up 
As it burns down. 
And in which I’m suppose to fill in a form 
… by filling it out. 
And a bell is only heard once it goes! 

English was invented by people, not computers 
And it betrays the ambiguities of this human race 
(which of course isn't a race at all) 
where a person who plays the piano is called a pianist 
but a person who drives a racecar is not called a racist? 
That is why when the stars are out, they are visible 
But when the lights are out, they are invisible 
So why is it that when I wind up my watch 
It starts 
But when I wind up this kind of fantasy 
It ends.

Anonymous

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