Spoken English

Interesting!!!

By Shashi Tharoor

As an Indian schooled in the English language, I have long been fascinated by its different variants in use around the world—from the Singaporean “la” suffixed to every sentence to the Australian “G’day” prefixed to every greeting. But most compelling are the multiple differences between British and American English, the two languages fighting for dominance in the Anglophone world.

In my first week on a US university campus, I asked an American where I could post a letter to my parents. “There’s a bulletin board at the Student Center,” he replied, “but are you sure you want to post something so personal?” I soon learned that I needed to “mail” letters, not “post” them (even though in the US you mail them at the “post office”).

In Britain, one concludes a restaurant meal by asking for the bill, and conceivably paying by cheque; in America, one asks for the check and pays with bills. What the Brits call chips are fries in America; what the Yanks call chips are crisps in Britain.

An English friend of mine says he nearly had a heart attack on a flight in the US when the American pilot announced that the plane would be airborne “momentarily”. In British English, “momentarily” means “for a moment”, and he says he thought the pilot was suggesting an imminent crash after takeoff. In American English, however, “momentarily” means “in a moment”, and the pilot was merely appeasing the passengers.

The plane took off, stayed aloft, my friend’s heart stopped thudding, and he lived to tell the tale. But he understood the old adage that Britain and the US are countries divided by a common language.

Anecdotes abound about the misunderstandings that arise when foreigners come to the US thinking that they know the language.

In one anecdote, a young man, in the course of a passionate courtship, tells his American girlfriend, “I’ll give you a ring tomorrow.” All he meant was that he would call her. But she understood him to have offered betrothal, and the relationship didn’t survive the misunderstanding.

Then there’s the hotel that failed to understand an English guest who called to say he had left his “trousers in the wardrobe”. Translators had to be summoned before the hotel staff finally cottoned on: “Oh, you’ve left your pants in the closet. Why didn’t you say so in the first place?”

Sometimes you can get the right word but the wrong concept. Our former foreign minister, M.C. Chagla, once ruefully recounted the time he wanted to order a modest bite from room service in a New York hotel and requested sandwiches. “How many do you want?” Chagla was asked. Imagining delicate little triangles of thinly-sliced bread, he replied: “Oh, half-a-dozen should be enough.” Six sandwiches duly arrived, each about a foot long and four inches high.

The language of politics is also not exempt from the politics of language. When a member of parliament in Britain “tables” a resolution, he puts it forward for debate and passage; when an American Congressman tables a resolution, he kills it off. A “moot” point is one the Englishman wants to argue; but if it’s moot, the American considers it null and void. Such differences of usage reveal something of the nature of American society. It is no wonder, after all, that while the British “stand” for election, Americans “run” for office.

A British linguist once told a New York audience that whereas a double negative could make a positive, there was no language in the world in which a double positive made a negative. A heckler put paid to his thesis in forthright American: “Yeah, right.”

Yeah, right, indeed. With the universality of English largely a result of US global dominance, it’s time for other English speakers to accept the American usage is winning worldwide. Even Indians are saying “elevator” and “apartment” rather than “lift” and “flat”. “Cookies” are supplanting “biscuits”.

And as the Americans have taught the rest of us to say: that’s O.K. Though not even they can tell us what those initials are meant to represent.

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Final letter

The telephone rang. It was a call from his mother. He answered it and his mother told him, “Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday.”

Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.

“Jack, did you hear me?”

“Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It’s been so long since I thought of him. I’m sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago,” Jack said.

“Well, he didn’t forget you. Every time I saw him he’d ask how you were doing. He’d reminisce about the many days you spent over ‘his side of the fence’ as he put it,” Mom told him.

“I loved that old house he lived in,” Jack said.

“You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man’s influence in your life,” she said.

“He’s the one who taught me carpentry,” he said. “I wouldn’t be in this business if it weren’t for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important. Mom, I’ll be there for the funeral,” Jack said.

As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser’s funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.

The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time. Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time. The house was exactly as he remembered.

Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture…Jack stopped suddenly…

“What’swrong, Jack?” his Mom asked.

“The box is gone,” he said.

“What box?” Mom asked.

“There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he’d ever tell me was ‘the thing I value most,'” Jack said.

It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.

“Now I’ll never know what was so valuable to him,” Jack said.

“I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom.”

It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. “Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days,” the note read.

Early the next day Jack went to the post office and retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention.

“Mr. Harold Belser” it read.

Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope.

Jack’s hands shook as he read the note inside.

“Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It’s the thing I valued most in my life.” A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filled his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.

Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved: “Jack, Thanks for your time! — Harold Belser.”

“The thing he valued most was my time!”

Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days.*

“Why?” Janet, his assistant asked.

“I need some time to spend with the people I love and say I care for,” he said. “Oh, by the way, Janet, thanks for your time!”

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away.”

Think about this. You may not realize it, but it’s 100 percent true.

1. At least 15 people in this world love you in some way.

2. A smile from you can bring happiness to anyone, even if they don’t like you.

3. Every night, SOMEONE thinks about you before they go to sleep.

4. You mean the world to someone.

5. If not for you, someone may not be living.

6. You are special and unique.

7. When you think you have no chance of getting what you want, you probably won’t get it, but if you trust God to do what’s best, and wait on His time, sooner or later, you will get it or something better.

8. When you make the biggest mistake ever, something good can still come from it.

9. When you think the world has turned its back on you, take a hard look: you most likely turned your back on the world and the people who love and care for you.

10. Someone that you don’t even know exists loves you.

11. Always remember the compliments you received. Forget about the rude remarks.

12. Always tell someone how you feel about them; you will feel much better when they know and you’ll both be happy.

13. If you have a great friend, take the time to let them know that they are great.

Share this letter with all the people you care about. In doing so, you will certainly brighten someone’s day and might change their perspective on life…for the better.

To everyone who read this just now….
*”Thanks for your time.”* 😊

The king’s dogs

Once A King had 10 wild dogs in the palace. He trained and used them to torture & kill any minister that misguided him.

A Minister once gave an opinion which was wrong and which the king didn’t like at all…
So he ordered that the Minister to be thrown to the dogs.

The Minister said, “I served you loyally for 10 years & you do this..?”

The King was unrelenting and did not change his decision.

Minister pleaded, “Please give me 10 days before you throw me to the dogs”.

The King agreed.

In those 10 days, the Minister went to the keeper of the dogs & told him he wanted to serve the dogs for the next 10 days…

The Guard was baffled… But he agreed.

So the minister started feeding the dogs, caring for them, washing them, providing all sorts of comfort for them.

So when the 10 days were up…

The King ordered that the minister be thrown to the dogs as sentenced.

When he was thrown in, everyone was amazed at what they saw…
The dogs were wagging their tails playing with the condemned minister… licking his feet.

The King was baffled at what he saw, “What happened to the dogs?” He growled.

The Minister then said, “I served the dogs for only 10 days & they didn’t forget my service… I served you for 10 years & you forgot all at the first mistake”…

The King realised his mistake

and

Replaced the dogs with crocodiles 🐊!!

Moral : When Management has decided to take you to task, they will inspite of whatever you do. .. That’s Final…
😁

Life is a blessing

I feel like reading this again and again & again.. hope u 👌👉

A famous writer was in his study room. He picked up his pen and started writing :

**Last year, I had a surgery and my gall bladder was removed. I had to stay stuck to the bed due to this surgery for a long time.

**The same year I reached the age of 60 years and had to give up my favourite job. I had spent 30 years of my life in this publishing company.

**The same year I experienced the sorrow of the death of my father.

**And in the same year my son failed in his medical exam because he had a car accident. He had to stay in bed at hospital with the cast on for several days. The destruction of car was another loss.

At the end he wrote: Oh God! It was such bad year !!

When the writer’s wife entered the room, she found her husband looking sad & lost in his thoughts. From behind his back she read what was written on the paper. She left the room silently and came back with another paper and placed it on side of her husband’s writing.

When the writer saw this paper, he found his name written on it with following lines :

**Last year I finally got rid of my gall bladder due to which I had spent years in pain….

**I turned 60 with sound health and got retired from my job. Now I can utilize my time to write something better with more focus and peace…..

**The same year my father, at the age of 95, without depending on anyone or without any critical condition met his Creator…..

**The same year, God blessed my son with a new life. My car was destroyed but my son stayed alive without getting any disability……

At the end she wrote:

This year was an immense blessing of God and it passed well !!!

The writer was indeed happy and amazed at such beautiful and encouraging interpretation of the happenings in his life in that year !!!

Moral : In daily lives we must see that its not happiness that makes us grateful but grate-fulness that makes us happy.

To all my lovely friends & family members ….

Think positive…..
Be happy…
Stay Blessed.

Pig and the cow

Once A rich Goan landlord was very sad as people criticised him and spoke ill of him He visited the church and asked his parish priest : ‘Why does everybody call me stingy when everyone knows that when I die I will leave everything I have to this church?’
The priest answered in a parable : ‘There once was a pig and a cow in this village. The pig was unpopular and despised by many. But the cow was loved by all in the village. This puzzled the pig very much.

The pig said to the cow : ‘People speak warmly of your good nature and your helpful attitude.They think you are very generous because each day you give them milk, butter and cheese. But what about me ? I give them everything I have. I give them the famous Goa sausages, bacon and ham. I also provide ingredients for mouth-watering sorpotel. Yet no one likes me. Why is that?’
The priest continued: ‘Do you know what the cow answered ? The Cow said : Perhaps it’s because I give while I am still living’ !!!�

HOW TRUE…………!!!🙏

Indian politician

*👇Read this very interesting… Reality of LIFE…👌*

One day a florist went to a barber for a haircut.
After the cut, he asked about his bill, and the barber replied, ‘I cannot accept money from you, I’m doing community service this week.

The florist was pleased and left the shop.

When the barber went to open his shop the next morning, there was a ‘Thank You’ card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.

Later, a grocer comes in for a haircut, and when he tried to pay his bill, the barber again replied, ‘I cannot accept money from you , I’m doing community service this week.

The grocer was happy and left the shop.

The next morning when the barber went to open up, there was a ‘Thank You’ card and a bag of fresh vegetables waiting for him at his door.

Then a politician came in for a haircut, and when he went to pay his bill, the barber again replied, ‘I cannot accept money from you. I’m doing community service this week.

The politician was very happy and left the shop.

The next morning, when the barber went to open up,
there were a dozen politicians lined up waiting for a free haircut.

And that illustrates the fundamental difference between the citizens of our country and the politicians who run it.

*Reality of LIFE in India*

*If you don’t forward this, someone will miss a good laugh.* 😃😃

Leaking bucket

Once at work there was a misunderstanding between the boss and his workers. The goals of the month was not completed , the working environment became hostile and untrustworthy. Everyone dreaded to come to work. So many started falling sick, coming late and going early. Then the boss turned to the company doctor to conduct a health check up of all and suggest some remedies . The doctor studied the situation and knew this disease had no cure with medicine. So the next day he came to the office and gave them a bucket with a hole. Everyday the workers had to fill the bucket and see that the water did not leak. Everyone tried to seal the hole and prevent the water from leaking. But alas no one could do it. Then after many days of failed remedies to seal the bucket the workers went to meet the doctor with their boss. The doctor then said 🗑🚰 *Beware of the Leaking Bucket*

1. You make people believe you are righteous but secretly you are evil’s agent. *(A leaking bucket).*

2. You pray all the time but you have no strong faith at all. *(A leaking bucket).*

3. You’re very kind to people and speak with them gently but with your family you’re always harsh. *(A leaking bucket).*

4.. You honour and treat your guests well but when they leave, you gossip about them and talk about their flaws. *(A leaking bucket).*

5. You give a lot of charity to the poor but you humiliate them and hurt them. *(A leaking bucket).*

6. You stand up to pray at night, fast and read The Holy Book everyday but you cut your family ties. *(A leaking bucket).*

7. You joke with friends openly but behind them you swear, insult, curse and blackmail them. *(A leaking bucket).*

8. You help others but you’re doing it to gain something from them and not doing those acts of kindness for the sake of Almighty God’s Glory. *(A leaking bucket).*

9. You post reminders and have thousands of followers on facebook, twitter and instagram but you’re doing it for the fame, not to spread the gospel. *(A leaking bucket).*

May the Almighty God have mercy on us not to become Leaking Buckets.🗑🚰

Leaking bucket

Once at work there was a misunderstanding between the boss and his workers. The goals of the month was not completed , the working environment became hostile and untrustworthy. Everyone dreaded to come to work. So many started falling sick, coming late and going early. Then the boss turned to the company doctor to conduct a health check up of all and suggest some remedies . The doctor studied the situation and knew this disease had no cure with medicine. So the next day he came to the office and gave them a bucket with a hole. Everyday the workers had to fill the bucket and see that the water did not leak. Everyone tried to seal the hole and prevent the water from leaking. But alas no one could do it. Then after many days of failed remedies to seal the bucket the workers went to meet the doctor with their boss. The doctor then said 🗑🚰 *Beware of the Leaking Bucket*

1. You make people believe you are righteous but secretly you are evil’s agent. *(A leaking bucket).*

2. You pray all the time but you have no strong faith at all. *(A leaking bucket).*

3. You’re very kind to people and speak with them gently but with your family you’re always harsh. *(A leaking bucket).*

4.. You honour and treat your guests well but when they leave, you gossip about them and talk about their flaws. *(A leaking bucket).*

5. You give a lot of charity to the poor but you humiliate them and hurt them. *(A leaking bucket).*

6. You stand up to pray at night, fast and read The Holy Book everyday but you cut your family ties. *(A leaking bucket).*

7. You joke with friends openly but behind them you swear, insult, curse and blackmail them. *(A leaking bucket).*

8. You help others but you’re doing it to gain something from them and not doing those acts of kindness for the sake of Almighty God’s Glory. *(A leaking bucket).*

9. You post reminders and have thousands of followers on facebook, twitter and instagram but you’re doing it for the fame, not to spread the gospel. *(A leaking bucket).*

May the Almighty God have mercy on us not to become Leaking Buckets.🗑🚰

Dining in the dark

Just received this by email

DINING IN THE DARK

Please read this true story before you close your eyes for today and open for tomorrow… I am sharing someone’s wonderful experience.

I attended a fund raising event for the visually handicapped people in a center for blind people.

As usual, since it was a Friday evening, I first thought of skipping the event, considering it could be a bit boring and rather spend the evening relaxing by some other means.

But being alone and sometimes finding it difficult to kill time, I thought of accepting the invitation and registered on line for booking.

When I went there, there were approximately 40 people present. Initially we were shown a video about the visually handicapped center. It was a short 15 minute video and quite inspiring that how people from different walks of life spend their time in helping these blind people, without expecting anything in return.

After the video, we all were gathered in a hall and were briefed about next event.

The theme of the next event was *”Dining in the Dark”*.

And this is the event turned out to be inspiring and worth sharing…

What is meant, was that we all 40+ people were going to have Dinner in a pitch Dark Room!

The next two hours were completely planned, organized, directed and executed by three blind youths.

One was a girl (Leader) and other two boys were assistants to her, forming a team of three blind volunteers.

The blind leader first gave us tips for dining (These were ACTUAL STANDARDS THE BLIND PEOPLE FOLLOW IN ORDER TO MAKE THEIR LIFE EASIER).

1. When you sit at your table the things will be placed as follows :
at 3 o’clock of your dish : You will find a spoon;
at 9 o’clock : Fork;
12 o’clock : spoon;
2 o’clock : Empty Glass Dish;
at the center with Paper napkin tucked at 6 o’clock.

2. There will be two large Jugs circulated to you. The Jug with plain walls will have water and the Jug with curved wall will have orange juice.

3. When you get your Jug based on your choice you have to pour it in your glass. You have to dip your forefinger in the glass so that when you fill it and the liquid touches your finger, you have to stop pouring.

She asked whether everyone had understood…

All said yes, but everyone was confused and trying to remember what she had said and confirming with each other.

The next one and half hours we spent were full of fun and learning. In a completely pitch dark room where we could not see ANYTHING, we were enjoying various delicious food without seeing it.

We all 40 people were taken in groups into the dark hall.

Each one was directed by blind person till he/she sits on a chair. We were finding it awkward because actually we are supposed to guide blind people to their destination and help them.

We were served a full five course dinner by this team of three blind people… welcome drinks, appetizers, starters, main course and desserts.

The amazing thing was that the team of three blind people were serving exactly vegetarian dishes to the vegetarian people who were sitting randomly in the room!

When registering on line, we were asked the question to choose from “Vegetarian” or “Non vegetarian”. I had chosen vegetarian, being one. We were so nicely hosted that we did not have to wait in-between serves. As we were finishing one dish, we were served with next without any delay.

After approximately one and half hours of dining in the dark, the leader asked whether everyone had finished eating…

After confirmation, she switched on the lights of the dining room.

*We left the Dining room with tears in our eyes.*

We realized how lucky we are and how we have been gifted with beautiful eyes to see the beautiful world.

We realized how difficult the lives of blind people are (and other handicapped), without being able to see.

We realized how uncomfortable we were for just two hours without being able to see anything and how they must be living their entire lives.

We realized how fortunate we are, that we do not value such simple things in life that we have and cry (sometime loudly, sometime within ourselves) and run after what we don’t have… for the whole of our lives, without having time to adore all the things that we do have.

Be cheerful…

**Open your eyes today before it closes down permanently when we die.

**Adore the people who love you, speak your heart with them today.

**Clear your misunderstandings soon, with the people who love you.

**Make your life worthy to live on this earth.

**GOD cannot give gifts, but he gives good people as a gift.

**Look at your life, that has come in as a gift.

**Only you can see the “truth” in a gifted person.

**GOD has gifted us eyes to look at all the good people around us.

**Complete the MISSION of your life with the VISION of your eyes and Donate your eyes so that you bring light into others Blind life after your life on earth.

Boat holes ⛵

A man was asked to paint a boat. ⛵

He brought with him paint and brushes and began to paint the boat a bright red, as the owner asked him. 🎨

While painting, he noticed that there was a small hole in the hull, and quietly repaired it.

When finished painting, he received his money and left. 💰💰💰

The next day, the owner of the boat came to the painter and presented him with a nice cheque, much higher than the payment for painting.

The painter was surprised and said “You’ve already paid me for painting the boat Sir!”

“But this is not for the paint job. It’s for having repaired the hole in the boat.”

“Ah! But it was such a small service… certainly it’s not worth paying me such a high amount for something so insignificant.”

“My dear friend, you do not understand. Let me tell you what happened.

When I asked you to paint the boat, I forgot to mention about the hole.

When the boat dried, my kids took the boat and went on a fishing trip.

They did not know that there was a hole. I was not at home at that time.

When I returned and noticed they had taken the boat, I was desperate because I remembered that the boat had a hole.

Imagine my relief and joy when I saw them returning from fishing.

Then, I examined the boat and found that you had repaired the hole! You see, now, what you did? You saved the life of my children! I do not have enough money to pay your ‘small’ good deed.”

_So, no matter who, when or how. Just continue to help, sustain, wipe tears, listen attentively and carefully repair all the ‘leaks’ you find, because you never know when one is in need of us or when God holds a pleasant surprise for us to be helpful and important to someone_.

_You may have repaired numerous ‘boat holes’ along the way… of several people without realizing how many lives you’ve saved_.

*✨So Keep up Good
work …✨💐*

🙏😁 I want to thank Everyone who Repaired my boat this year in every way like Good Wishes, thoughts, love, care & prayers…