Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Learn something new every day

I've mentioned before my Indian friends (dot, not the feather) with whom I work, editing their butchered English for American audiences. They provide me with immense opportunities for private giggles while I'm working when I stumble across some of their unintentional language gaffes.

Some of the most recent word goodies from India:

  • sample over-baked pizzas
  • and soft lightening and background music
  • easy to read and comprehend, concise in concepts and clear in apprehension
  • Keeping backyard chickens is easy with our kits that include handle and wheels for easy maneuverability
  • Workers compensation insurance covers injuries and occupational diseases picked up at work
  • In order to overcome numerous challenges to attain the intended results, the business scenario has changed to a larger extent.
  • As per the requirements any evolving business needs and to match its services to the specified requirements, these professionals have the required ability.
  • Exotic shades along with ecstatic reflection of jewelry
  • and a continental dinner served the next morning
  • obtain financial support for a variety of unexpected problems that may come snooping around
  • you can also opt for throw pillows and lumber pillows (should be lumbar)
  • and the facilities of a 5-start hotel
However, within the past week, among their gaffes were two English words that I did not know. Both of which were used correctly in context. I have a fairly large vocabulary and, while I'm not conceited about it, believe that there are not all that many words that crop up in the English language with which I'm not familiar. 

The words are

cynosure  |ˈsīnəˌ sh oŏr; ˈsin-|
noun [in sing. ]
a person or thing that is the center of attention or admiration : the Queen was the cynosure of all eyes.

apposite  |ˈapəzit|
apt in the circumstances or in relation to something : an apposite quotation | the observations are apposite to the discussion. Also appositely (adverb) and appositeness (noun)

As I said, they were both used correctly but I changed them anyway since I figured if I didn't know them, the average American reader would probably not know them either.

This is just to give credit where it is due -- not all the writing that comes from my Indian friends is bad. And any time you want to sample some over-baked pizza (I think they meant oven-baked) or get some lumber pillows for your room at the 5-start hotel, I can hook you up.

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