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 Post subject: The "Learning English" Thread
PostPosted: November 24th, 2007, 2:40 pm 
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Damn, I knew the day would come when I would respawn this BRS thread of mine... so, from the Anime Advice Thread:

Mmsven wrote:
Acmurphy wrote:
In English, technically, crap and shit have the same meaning. However "the shit" has a double meaning now that also refers to something that is very awesome. It's certainly odd how these things come about.

Lol, Ive seen alot of people take "is shit" and "the shit" the wrong way, and it becomes all awkward because the meanings are completely different.

Would you care to explain the difference to me, please?
Between "is shit", "the shit" and "the crap" and such?
I'm having a hard time finding such idiomatic expressions in my dictionaries. 8)

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PostPosted: November 24th, 2007, 6:43 pm 
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"Is shit" just refers to something awful. "The shit" typically means something awesome, but a literal meaning would be the same as "is shit." I've never heard anyone use "the crap" in the same vain as "the shit," so the best way to use that one is just how it is actually translated, something crappy. Thinking about it, using "the crap" is a rather odd phrase in English, and I can't remember anyone ever having said it to me before. Usually, it would just be "that's crap" "is crap" "crappy" etc. Since it is so odd and rarely used, I think that is what Cab meant when he said people may confuse it, since it seemed like you were creating a variation of "the shit" just making it a little more friendly by using crap instead :D

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PostPosted: November 24th, 2007, 7:48 pm 
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All you have to do to understand it is to listen to this song:

The Game - Da Shit

:lol: This song is pretty funny now that I think of it.

It's usually a term used by gangsters. The English language is retarded; just about everything has double meanings, and some words that sound the same have different meanings. It's the only language I know though, I have always sucked at my French.

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PostPosted: November 30th, 2007, 2:32 pm 
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Mmsven wrote:
All you have to do to understand it is to listen to this song: The Game - Da Shit

Uh... that doesn't really help me actually... :?:

Okay, I understand
- "the shit" (used as a noun) is a very colloquial expression for something that is actually positive
- "shit" as an adjective is negative
- "crap" is almost always used in its adjective form, like "crappy"

acmurphy wrote:
it seemed like you were creating a variation of "the shit" just making it a little more friendly by using crap instead

That was indeed my intention, I just didn't know it would turn into "something awesome". :oops:

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PostPosted: December 1st, 2007, 10:15 pm 
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Well in adjective form or in noun form "shit" and "crap" are basically the same thing, which crap being the less vulgar out of the two words. The differences occurs when each is used in combination with other words like the article "the."

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PostPosted: March 8th, 2008, 3:13 pm 
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There's another thing bugging me, and I never get it straight.
Consider a sentence like:

"The marketplace was all but empty."

Now, is the marketplace void of people or is it very crowded?
It's difficult because there is a similarly sounding construction in German, which, literally translated, would express that the marketplace was bustling with activity, much like a bee hive.

Then again, would the meaning of the sentence change if the word "all" was removed?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 8th, 2008, 4:45 pm 
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That means its very crowded. "But" is the reversal.

Thats more old-english style of writing.

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PostPosted: March 8th, 2008, 6:41 pm 
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Mmsven wrote:
That means its very crowded. "But" is the reversal.

Thats more old-english style of writing.


Pretty much what Mmsven said. If it helps, try and think of that sentence as "The marketplace was everything except empty".

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PostPosted: March 9th, 2008, 6:51 am 
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Zaxares wrote:
try and think of that sentence as "The marketplace was everything except empty".

... which would be the literal translation of the German construction I had in mind... :o

What about the case without "all" - "The marketplace was but empty."
Does it have a different meaning or is "all" just for emphasis?

Mmsven wrote:
Thats more old-english style of writing.

Comparative. :D "An older style of English", since Old English looks like this:

"Fæder ure þu þe eart on heofonum..."

No, I'm not making fun of you. I know lots of people who complain about "Shakespeare's old English" that is actually the first milestone of Modern English, and on such occasions I use to recite this first line of the Anglosaxon version of the Lord's prayer.

Middle English version (John Wycliff, 1389):

"Oure fadir that are in heuenes..."

One of dozens of versions. Dictionaries were not invented yet. :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 9th, 2008, 7:55 pm 
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42317 wrote:
What about the case without "all" - "The marketplace was but empty."
Does it have a different meaning or is "all" just for emphasis?


For emphasis, mainly. In the original sentence, the word "all" basically represents "everything" in the modified sentence I posted above.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 14th, 2008, 4:20 pm 
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I have just found a kinda funny sentence on military.com, where Google Earth is said

"to photo military bases".

In none of my dictionaries does "photo" appear as a verb and Webster's dictionary online doesn't have it either.
Is it a new trend? Have you encountered that kinda use, too?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 14th, 2008, 6:52 pm 
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Photo is a short name for photograph.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/photograph

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Last edited by Mmsven on March 14th, 2008, 8:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 14th, 2008, 7:38 pm 
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I haven't actually seen the use of the word "photo" as a verb before, either. In today's culture where pictures can be easily taken by mobile phones and digital cameras though, I suppose it was inevitable.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 14th, 2008, 10:49 pm 
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It has a kind of grotesqueness as a verb... :evil:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 15th, 2008, 9:10 am 
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Zaxares wrote:
Mmsven wrote:
That means its very crowded. "But" is the reversal.

Thats more old-english style of writing.


Pretty much what Mmsven said. If it helps, try and think of that sentence as "The marketplace was everything except empty".


Sorry, but that's not correct. The "all but" means almost or nearly.

The "all but" is pretty much a fragment of what could be a lengthier description, for example "The market was all but for a few people, empty".


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