When your car gets a puncture (increasingly called a “flat tyre” in the non-American parts of the English speaking world) in India, you open the “dicky” (“boot” in British-influenced countries), (“trunk” in America) and get the “stepney”. What’s a stepney? … Continue reading
The words “jewel”, “jewellery” and “jewellers” are commonly mispronounced. The “w” should be almost silent, i.e. “jooal”, “jooallery” and “jooalers”. This was brought home by a story in Mid-Day.com and this picture (credit to Mid-Day): The Marathi sign board uses … Continue reading
When you talk about a building or some other fixed enclosed space, it is “the premises”. It is never “the premise” or “a premise”. e.g. “She entered the premises.” A railway compartment is never “premises”. A building or a hut … Continue reading
There is a good reason a “quote” is spelt differently from “Coat”. Simple. They are pronounced differently. “Quote” is pronounced “kwote” (क्वोट). “Coat” is pronounced “koat” (कोट)
Saw this float at the 2016 Republic Day parade in New Delhi. Why is it “Gova/Gowa” in Devanagari? Why not गोआ ? In Konkani they use “Goya” (गोंय), as in Goenkarancho (English transliteration by Goans): Very confusing.
Very often one sees an apostrophe (followed by an “s”) used to denote a plural, e.g. pizza’s. Here is a tip for those who don’t want to learn the rules: Don’t use an apostrophe again and you will be correct … Continue reading
Dr. Gerard Nolst Trenité (1870 – 1946), was a Dutch observer of English and wrote a poem The Chaos to illustrate how it is so frustrating to a non-English native speaker. Here is an extract from the poem, which has … Continue reading
I saw a concocted, unnecessary word – “vends”, used only in North India. It probably means “vendors”, which is the word to be used if communicating with educated people outside India.
I still hear Indians saying, “What is your good name, sir?” (Sometimes, it is “sirji”.) Stop translating from your Indian language, such as Hindi – “aap ka shubh naam kya hain?” Although you were brought up to be polite in … Continue reading
Despite attempts by the Times of India group to change the English language, there is no such word as “upto”. It is two words, “up to”. Don’t believe it? Grab your trusty dictionary (provided that it wasn’t published by the … Continue reading