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Old 27th August 2011, 22:45   #1546
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

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Originally Posted by atrisarkar View Post
I just got this mail from my broadband customer support team:

Dear Subscriber,

Hereby we are noticing that, Our EARTHLINK Customer Support will not availabe on 24.08.2011 from 04.00PM to 08:00PM due system up-gradation.

Please cooperate us for Improve our Service,
Thanks for Understanding,

Regards,
EARTHLINK Communications
Suggested Reply:

Dear Earthling

Now that you are upgraded I would like to suggest that you adopt 'Wren n Martin' as you childern under the social responsibilty program at EARTHLINK.

PS - Am referring to the grammar book - just incase you still didn't get it.

Regards
Aliens from UK Englishmen Society
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Old 14th November 2011, 14:44   #1547
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Default Classic Indianisms

Dear All,

We are a unique species, aren’t we? Not humans. Indians, I mean. No other race speaks or spells like we do.

Indians brag that we speak the best, most purest form of English known as the Queens English (probably the only thing left by the British!).

Came across this email (Source) and realized that we have developed our own "Desi" version of the Queen's language, which at times can be irritating and embarrassing for our international clients (me being in the IT line of business)

I have also added a couple of comments, which I thought might be the source.


Take greetings for example.

A friendly clerk asking me for my name is apt to start a conversation with, “What is your good name?” As if I hold that sort of information close to my heart and only divulge my evil pseudonym. Bizarre.

I call these Indianisms.
Which got me thinking about a compilation, a greatest hits of the most hilarious Indianisms out there. And here they are. The most common ones, and my favorites among them.

1. 'Passing out'

When you complete your studies at an educational institution, you graduate from that institution.

You do not "pass out" from that institution.

To "pass out" refers to losing consciousness, like after you get too drunk, though I’m not sure how we managed to connect graduating and intoxication.

Oh wait … of course, poor grades throughout the year could lead to a sudden elation on hearing you’ve passed all of your exams, which could lead to you actually "passing out," but this is rare at best.

2. 'Kindly revert'

One common mistake we make is using the word revert to mean reply or respond.

Revert means "to return to a former state."

I can’t help thinking of a sarcastic answer every time this comes up.

“Please revert at the earliest.”

“Sure, I’ll set my biological clock to regress evolutionarily to my original primitive hydrocarbon state at 1 p.m. today."

3. 'Years back'

If it happened in the past, it happened years ago, not "years back."

Given how common this phrase is, I’m guessing the first person who switched "ago" for "back" probably did it years back. See what I mean?

And speaking of "back," asking someone to use the backside entrance sounds so wrong.

“So when did you buy this car?”

“Oh, years back.”

“Cool, can you open the backside? I’d like to get a load in.”

4. 'Doing the needful'

Try to avoid using the phrase "do the needful." It went out of style decades ago, about the time the British left.

Using it today indicates you are a dinosaur, a dinosaur with bad grammar.

You may use the phrase humorously, to poke fun at such archaic speech, or other dinosaurs.

“Will you do the needful?”

“Of course, and I’ll send you a telegram to let you know it's done too.”

5. 'Discuss about'

“What shall we discuss about today?”

“Let’s discuss about politics. We need a fault-ridden topic to mirror our bad grammar.”

You don't "discuss about" something; you just discuss things.

The word "discuss" means to "talk about". There is no reason to insert the word "about" after "discuss."
That would be like saying "talk about about." Which "brings about" me to my next peeve.

6. 'Order for'"Hey, let’s order for a pizza."

"Sure, and why not raid a library while we’re about it.”

When you order something, you "order" it, you do not "order for" it.

Who knows when or why we began placing random prepositions after verbs?

Perhaps somewhere in our history someone lost a little faith in the "doing" word and added "for" to make sure their order would reach them. They must have been pretty hungry.

7. 'Do one thing' (Probable source - Ek Kaam Kar...)
When someone approaches you with a query, and your reply begins with the phrase "do one thing," you're doing it wrong.

"Do one thing" is a phrase that does not make sense.

It is an Indianism. It is only understood in India. It is not proper English. It is irritating.

There are better ways to begin a reply. And worst of all, any person who starts a sentence with "do one thing" invariably ends up giving you at least five things to do.

“My computer keeps getting hung.”

“Do one thing. Clear your history. Delete your cookies. Defrag your hardrive. Run a virus check. Restart your computer... .”

8. 'Out of station'

“Sorry I can’t talk right now, I’m out of station.”

“What a coincidence, Vijay, I’m in a station right now.”

Another blast from the past, this one, and also, extremely outdated.

What's wrong with "out of town" or "not in Mumbai" or my favorite "I'm not here"?

9. The big sleep

"I’m going to bed now, sleep is coming." (Probable source - Mala Zop Yet aahe)

"OK, say hi to it for me."

While a fan of anthropomorphism, I do have my limits. "Sleep is coming" is taking things a bit too far.

Your life isn’t a poem. You don’t have to give body cycles their own personalities.

10. 'Prepone'
“Let’s prepone the meeting from 11 a.m. to 10 a.m.”

Because the opposite of postpone just has to be prepone, right?

"Prepone" is probably the most famous Indianism of all time; one that I’m proud of, and that I actually support as a new entry to all English dictionaries.

Because it makes sense. Because it fills a gap. Because we need it. We’re Indians, damn it. Students of chaos theory.

We don’t have the time to say silly things like "could you please bring the meeting forward."

Prepone it is.

There are many more pure grammatical "gems" in what we call Indian English. Perhaps you guys can add some more.

Till then, kindly adjust

Disclaimer : This is not intended to offend our Indian Bretheren in anyway!!

Last edited by Racer_X : 14th November 2011 at 14:56.
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Old 14th November 2011, 15:08   #1548
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Some more:
Pre-poned - lovely and logical word as the opposite of postponed. the actual English word is "advanced".
If you go to see... - literal translation of "dekha jaye to.."
What is your good name? - aap ke shubh naam kya hai?
Kindly revert back - this is a pucca Indian-ism as is the word Pucca - the usage of the word "back" here is redundant really.

To quote your post below - your usage of the best, most purest form... - the use of "most" here is redundant really.

Cousin Brother, Co-brother, Co-sister, Cousin Sister - all these are Indian-isms too.
I will take your leave now - this is more Indian than otherwise.
With your kind permission... very Victorian English
He was very vexed with something - again very old fashioned pedantic usage.
I humbly beg your permission... - old fashioned usage


Its an interesting and "live" language - keeps evolving over time according to the times we live in - and that's the beauty of it. Im glad that the Indian-isms are being absorbed into English - considering that we may have probably the largest English speaking population anywhere in the whole world!

Last edited by shankar.balan : 14th November 2011 at 15:11.
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Old 14th November 2011, 15:13   #1549
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Good ones. Some of them are just bad english - like lets order for a pizza. But the others are classic (whats your good name etc).

Some more from my side:
1. By the by: "By the by, how do i go to xxxx". Used in the context of talking to someone, and asking a question that is not related to the topic of discussion at that point of time. Similar to "By the way".

2. Using "no", to ask a question. as in "You are coming, no?".

Not to branch off from the main topic, but just to quote one of the terms adapted in kannada - anyone heard of "Oldaeein ... ". This is normally what one would say in a bus ask the driver to stop it.

Source: Oldaeein is actually meant to be "hold on...".
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Old 14th November 2011, 15:27   #1550
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Quote:
Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
To quote your post below - your usage of the best, most purest form... - the use of "most" here is redundant really.
Thank You Sirji!! It is really really redundant here!! I agree!!
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Old 14th November 2011, 16:07   #1551
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Why only India, i have seen this in UK as well. One of the strangest of statements (still have not been able to figure this out) is We don't do ???

Its really silly, when at a restaurant we asked if they could serve us pickle and the response was We don't do pickle. (Whats there to do in a pickle mate).

So if they do not serve or keep something in that store/hotel, they would say We don't do ???, why not just say We don't serve/keep ???
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Old 14th November 2011, 17:41   #1552
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Quote:
Originally Posted by Racer_X View Post
Dear All,

We are a unique species, aren’t we? Not humans. Indians, I mean. No other race speaks or spells like we do.

Indians brag that we speak the best, most purest form of English known as the Queens English (probably the only thing left by the British!).

Came across this email (Source) and realized that we have developed our own "Desi" version of the Queen's language, which at times can be irritating and embarrassing for our international clients (me being in the IT line of business)

I have also added a couple of comments, which I thought might be the source.
I remember reading this on some CNN webpage a few months back,erm...ago (Right?). Are you the same guy who penned the article?

Let me check the source and confirm. I read it on the internet only. There were a few more than these...like Eat my head/brains and something like that.

Last edited by Technocrat : 15th November 2011 at 00:58. Reason: Please do selective quoting when quoting a long post, thanks
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Old 14th November 2011, 18:04   #1553
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

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Originally Posted by Shivank View Post
I remember reading this on some CNN webpage a few months back,erm...ago (Right?). Are you the same guy who penned the article?

Let me check the source and confirm. I read it on the internet only. There were a few more than these...like Eat my head/brains and something like that.
It was a forward, which I posted here.
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Old 25th January 2012, 20:09   #1554
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

Que, Queue and Cue?

Riddle this:

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I'm glad the rest of the queue didn't take that as a 'cue' to queue up behind him
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Old 25th January 2012, 21:14   #1555
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

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Originally Posted by deep_bang View Post

2. Using "no", to ask a question. as in "You are coming, no?".
from what I understand, "No" here is a shortcut for "aren't you", "isn't it", "didn't he" etc.
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Old 25th January 2012, 21:38   #1556
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

This thread feels like going through 'Wren and Martin' all over again. English is number one language because it has borrowed from all the worlds languages and is not 'chauvinistic' like other languages. It's not enough if you post in correct English, there's a whole new language developing via txting (sorry texting) which could be called English Version Gen Nxt. Language is mainly used for communication and is constantly evolving over time. How it would be if asked "How art thou" instead of "How are You".
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Old 25th January 2012, 21:52   #1557
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Default Re: Classic Indianisms

Quote:
Originally Posted by deep_bang View Post
2. Using "no", to ask a question. as in "You are coming, no?".

Not to branch off from the main topic, but just to quote one of the terms adapted in kannada - anyone heard of "Oldaeein ... ". This is normally what one would say in a bus ask the driver to stop it.

Source: Oldaeein is actually meant to be "hold on...".
In Vizag buses, it is common to hear 'Oleet', which I deciphered to mean 'hold it'.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vivekiny2k View Post
from what I understand, "No" here is a shortcut for "aren't you", "isn't it", "didn't he" etc.
You are spot on, @vivekiny2K. I am not sure if it is incorrect.

Another common usage is 'he can't answer the phone now, he is eating'.

An Englishman might ask 'eating what--someone's brains?' The correct expression is 'having his food'. If one chooses to use the word 'eating' then it should be followed by a noun like 'his food' or 'his words'.
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Old 26th January 2012, 03:10   #1558
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

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Another common usage is 'he can't answer the phone now, he is eating'.

An Englishman might ask 'eating what--someone's brains?' The correct expression is 'having his food'.
Not actually true. It is one of those instances in which the the object is understood. He is eating is fine.

This is assumng we are dealing with a present continuous tense of the verb to eat.

===ALTERNATIVELY===

The verb is to be

Subject He; Verb is; object eating.

In that case, we are making a noun out of the verb, which I think is called a gerund.

Guys... It's a long time since I went to school, but whatever the technical reason, I can say for sure that, "...he is eating," is very acceptable.

Last edited by Thad E Ginathom : 26th January 2012 at 03:15.
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Old 26th January 2012, 03:40   #1559
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

Since this thread mostly seems to pick on Indians for their usage of a few words/phrases, I thought I'll bring up the American English phrases that don't make any sense to me.

(i) If you don't want something, you should prefix a "No" to that object. For example, if you don't want ice in your water, instead of saying "Water without Ice", you should say "Water, no ice". It doesn't make sense to me at all! How can something not exist? I had difficulty communicating when I first got here because of this. I kept using without and the waiters/servers at the restaurants would go "Say that again". Water with ice and water without ice, is it really that hard?

(ii) "For here, To go?". The first time I heard this, I asked my friend what the person was referring meant. She told me that the person was enquiring if I wanted to take the food away or eat at the joint. But, that's too strange for me.

There are many phrases here that do not have a context and you'd have a hard time if you don't know someone who can translate them to you. I felt it was a little too "mechanical" and the usage of an alternative phrase or word might only earn you strange looks or the phrase "Say that again" :P.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Racer_X View Post
Dear All,
7. 'Do one thing' (Probable source - Ek Kaam Kar...)
When someone approaches you with a query, and your reply begins with the phrase "do one thing," you're doing it wrong.

"Do one thing" is a phrase that does not make sense.

It is an Indianism. It is only understood in India. It is not proper English. It is irritating.

There are better ways to begin a reply. And worst of all, any person who starts a sentence with "do one thing" invariably ends up giving you at least five things to do.

“My computer keeps getting hung.”

“Do one thing. Clear your history. Delete your cookies. Defrag your hardrive. Run a virus check. Restart your computer... .”
I think this is a literal translation of the phrase "Ek kaam kar". Infact, I feel a lot of such phrases are direct translations of the ones we regularly use in our native language.

Last edited by HellwratH : 26th January 2012 at 03:56.
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Old 26th January 2012, 07:16   #1560
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Default Re: A YetiGuide® : How To Post In Proper English

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Originally Posted by HellwratH View Post
Since this thread mostly seems to pick on Indians for their usage of a few words/phrases, I thought I'll bring up the American English phrases that don't make any sense to me.
I like the direction this thread is taking.

Quote:
(i) If you don't want something, you should prefix a "No" to that object. For example, if you don't want ice in your water, instead of saying "Water without Ice", you should say "Water, no ice". It doesn't make sense to me at all! How can something not exist? I had difficulty communicating when I first got here because of this. I kept using without and the waiters/servers at the restaurants would go "Say that again". Water with ice and water without ice, is it really that hard?
I have tried "plain", "warm", "normal" (!) but nothing works except "no ice". Or should I say- no dice!

Quote:
(ii) "For here, To go?". The first time I heard this, I asked my friend what the person was referring meant. She told me that the person was enquiring if I wanted to take the food away or eat at the joint. But, that's too strange for me.
Even stranger- and downright hilarious- was when I was on my first US trip and driving around with friends who were settled there. We were hungry but had to reach someplace in a hurry, so my friend suggested that we take it away and eat in the car. Only we were speaking Bambaiyya Hindi then and it came out as "Chal yaar, apun isko "to-go" karte hai" (never mind, it's untranslateable )

Last edited by noopster : 26th January 2012 at 07:17.
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