Varieties of English

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Stan
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Postby Stan » 2005-12-15, 2:30

Gormur wrote:Also, I don't know if these are regional or not.....

have a seat/take a seat
take the bus/bus it ("bus" is a verb here)
drive a car/motor or auto (to drive) - I motored to town.


take a seat
ride the bus/ take the bus
drive

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Postby Tom K. » 2005-12-15, 2:35

When I first saw this thread I thought it was just going to be beating a proverbial dead horse. I mean, I thought it was going to be about things that everyone knows about, that have already been run into the ground on a zillion discussion boards, like how "rubber" means "eraser" in the UK and "condom" in the US. But most of this stuff I never even knew about. And I've got a few things to contribute:

Canada: wait in a line-up
US: wait in/on line (depending on the region)


I may not be a Canadian but I know about "line-up" because I heard it in a "Kids in the Hall" episode. As for the US, it's "in line" virtually everywhere but "on line" in New York City. I used to work at the Stop & Shop in Jackson, NJ, which is about halfway between New York and Philadelphia (about an hour and a half from each city). There are a lot of people there who grew up in NYC and they all said "on line" while the Jackson natives said "in line." Before that I never even knew this term existed. After I had been there for a while I noticed "on line" used in 3 episodes of "Seinfeld" and also in the song "To Be With You" by Mr. Big (written by the band's singer, who was from Long Island).

Here's one nobody's mentioned yet. Jackson, NJ is something of a cultural crossroads full of people who are originally from New York, Philadelphia, and about every corner of New Jersey. I grew up in Ohio and Texas and I have always called that metal contraption in a grocery store a "cart" or maybe sometimes a "basket." I heard those a lot at the Jackson Stop & Shop, too, but all the New Yorkers called it a "wagon" and a certain segment of the Jersey people said "carriage." So I asked one of the managers "is this a cart, a wagon, or a carriage?" and she said "A cart. But I'm from North Carolina and my mom calls it a buggy."
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Postby Ariki » 2005-12-15, 3:32

Here's one nobody's mentioned yet. Jackson, NJ is something of a cultural crossroads full of people who are originally from New York, Philadelphia, and about every corner of New Jersey. I grew up in Ohio and Texas and I have always called that metal contraption in a grocery store a "cart" or maybe sometimes a "basket." I heard those a lot at the Jackson Stop & Shop, too, but all the New Yorkers called it a "wagon" and a certain segment of the Jersey people said "carriage." So I asked one of the managers "is this a cart, a wagon, or a carriage?" and she said "A cart. But I'm from North Carolina and my mom calls it a buggy."


In Australia they're called trolleys but in NZ some people call them 'trollets' while others call them 'trundles' :shock:
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Postby clint » 2005-12-15, 4:23

Tom K. wrote:I grew up in Ohio and Texas and I have always called that metal contraption in a grocery store a "cart" or maybe sometimes a "basket." I heard those a lot at the Jackson Stop & Shop, too, but all the New Yorkers called it a "wagon" and a certain segment of the Jersey people said "carriage." So I asked one of the managers "is this a cart, a wagon, or a carriage?" and she said "A cart. But I'm from North Carolina and my mom calls it a buggy."


I've lived in Papua New Guinea, Australia and New Zealand.. I've only every known them as shopping trolleys. But in NZ they're also referred to as trundlers.. I've heard on some american programmes the term shopping cart as well as on the net..

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Postby Gormur » 2005-12-15, 6:38

Tom K. wrote:When I first saw this thread I thought it was just going to be beating a proverbial dead horse. I mean, I thought it was going to be about things that everyone knows about, that have already been run into the ground on a zillion discussion boards, like how "rubber" means "eraser" in the UK and "condom" in the US. But most of this stuff I never even knew about. And I've got a few things to contribute:

Canada: wait in a line-up
US: wait in/on line (depending on the region)


I may not be a Canadian but I know about "line-up" because I heard it in a "Kids in the Hall" episode. As for the US, it's "in line" virtually everywhere but "on line" in New York City. I used to work at the Stop & Shop in Jackson, NJ, which is about halfway between New York and Philadelphia (about an hour and a half from each city). There are a lot of people there who grew up in NYC and they all said "on line" while the Jackson natives said "in line." Before that I never even knew this term existed. After I had been there for a while I noticed "on line" used in 3 episodes of "Seinfeld" and also in the song "To Be With You" by Mr. Big (written by the band's singer, who was from Long Island).

Here's one nobody's mentioned yet. Jackson, NJ is something of a cultural crossroads full of people who are originally from New York, Philadelphia, and about every corner of New Jersey. I grew up in Ohio and Texas and I have always called that metal contraption in a grocery store a "cart" or maybe sometimes a "basket." I heard those a lot at the Jackson Stop & Shop, too, but all the New Yorkers called it a "wagon" and a certain segment of the Jersey people said "carriage." So I asked one of the managers "is this a cart, a wagon, or a carriage?" and she said "A cart. But I'm from North Carolina and my mom calls it a buggy."


Yeah, it is "buggy" in the South.

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Re: Varieties of English

Postby Pips » 2005-12-16, 21:52

UK and Canada: have a look
US: take a look


Both sound OK to me, and I'm pretty sure I use both.

UK and Canada: write an exam
US: take an exam


"Write" sounds better to me in this situation.

Canada: wait in a line-up
US: wait in/on line (depending on the region)


I think I say "wait in line" more often. "Wait in a line-up" sounds weird to me, although "line-up" on its own is OK.

UK and Canada: go on holiday
US: go on vacation


This one is easy - "vacation" all the way. Some people say "go on holidays" (i.e., "He took his holidays in Cuba this year."), but I always say "vacation".

UK and Canada: in hospital
US: in the hospital


I don't agree that "in hospital" is the Canadian variant. Most people I know would say "in the hospital." It sounds weird without the article.

Tom K. wrote:I may not be a Canadian but I know about "line-up" because I heard it in a "Kids in the Hall" episode.


The "Flying Pig" episode? I love KITH :lol:

Tom K. wrote:and also in the song "To Be With You" by Mr. Big (written by the band's singer, who was from Long Island).


I always thought that lyric was weird - "waiting on a line-up, just to be the next to be with you."

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Postby DelBoy » 2005-12-23, 15:28

Here's what we;d say in Ireland

UK and Canada: have a look
US: take a look



Either one is fine.

UK and Canada: write an exam
US: take an exam



I wouldnt really say either - both sound far too formal! (Write an exam almost sounds like you are writing the questions to be set for the exam :lol:
We'd say 'do an exam' here.

Canada: wait in a line-up
US: wait in/on line (depending on the region)



Definitely 'queue'. These just wound weird to me! (especially the 'line-up' one - isnt that what suspects stand in to be identified?) :lol:

UK and Canada: go on holiday
US: go on vacation



Either 'go on holiday' or 'go away'.

UK and Canada: in hospital
US: in the hospital


'in hospital' definitely
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Postby charlotteh » 2005-12-24, 15:03

On the Royal Mail, they don't understand post-codes. My parents live in a wee village called Wick near Bristol, but the post frequently arrives via Wick, near Thurso. In fact I intend to make pilgrimage to this Wick, where I believe there is a special post-box where they keep all the mail intended for Bristol Wick. And I will send a postcard.
Incidentally, I find it strange that people compare so-called 'British English' with Canadian/American English etc, when the UK is made of of 4 countries, all with very different dialects, and sub-dialects within the countries themselves. You can't say 'British English', when there's no such thing. You can only say 'British spelling'.
Maybe this point has already been made, I couldn't be bothered to read all the posts carefully! :)

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Postby Kirk » 2005-12-24, 20:55

charlotteh wrote:Incidentally, I find it strange that people compare so-called 'British English' with Canadian/American English etc, when the UK is made of of 4 countries, all with very different dialects, and sub-dialects within the countries themselves. You can't say 'British English', when there's no such thing. You can only say 'British spelling'.
Maybe this point has already been made, I couldn't be bothered to read all the posts carefully! :)


Agree completely. Often some people treat North American and British English as monolithic entities which are homogenous within themselves which is quite clearly not the case. The few differences in spelling are usually not even indicative of pronunciation differences but are usually just stylistic, so the idea of basing the differences in English dialects off of spelling is silly. If we did that there'd almost be nothing to consider! Thankfully, the spoken language is fascinating (well, at least to me!) in all its different varieties around the world, and even just within English-speaking North America.
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Re: Varieties of English

Postby Gormur » 2005-12-30, 22:20

Pips wrote:I think I say "wait in line" more often. "Wait in a line-up" sounds weird to me, although "line-up" on its own is OK.


"Wait in a line-up" is used in Manitoba, so it can't be that unusual, or maybe it is for that reason. :lol:

This one is easy - "vacation" all the way. Some people say "go on holidays" (i.e., "He took his holidays in Cuba this year."), but I always say "vacation".


I'm quite surprised by this one as "vacation" is an American word and I've never heard a Canadian use it at all. And around Winnipeg, they'd say "go on holiday", without the "s". That includes profs and other educated people.

I don't agree that "in hospital" is the Canadian variant. Most people I know would say "in the hospital." It sounds weird without the article.


Again, I've yet to hear it otherwise said (with the article) in Canada. Everyone I know say "in hospital".

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Postby Kirk » 2006-01-03, 5:35

Speaking of Canadian words, I just learned one a few minutes ago. I was playing Boggle (great game, by the way) with my mom, and one of the words she found was "tuke." I had never heard of the word, but she explained it's a Canadian word for a winter knitted hat. I did a Google search for it and found two spellings for it: "tuke" and "tuque," which would make sense since the Oxford English Dictionary lists it as "tuque," from Canadian French "tuque."

How did my mom know this seemingly random word? Her parents (my grandparents) were Canadian ;) She says no one here knows the word (not that we'd need knitted winter caps that often in California, anyway) but apparently my grandparents used the word and she's heard our Canadian relatives use the word in the relatively recent past, so it must still be in use. I looked up the Wikipedia article on it and the picture it has looks like what I'd call a "beanie." Interestingly, the article claims that in California the terms are interchangeable, tho I've never heard anything but "beanie" here.

Is "tuque" a familiar word to the Canadians here?
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Postby Pips » 2006-01-03, 14:19

Kirk wrote:Is "tuque" a familiar word to the Canadians here?


It most certainly is! (Although I've never seen it spelled "tuke" before!) And I can imagine they're certainly more widespread here than in California!

I've heard Americans call them "beanies", "knit caps" or "skullcaps". But to us Canadians it will always just be a tuque.
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Postby Gormur » 2006-01-03, 18:09

Pips wrote:
Kirk wrote:Is "tuque" a familiar word to the Canadians here?


It most certainly is! (Although I've never seen it spelled "tuke" before!) And I can imagine they're certainly more widespread here than in California!

I've heard Americans call them "beanies", "knit caps" or "skullcaps". But to us Canadians it will always just be a tuque.


It's spelled "toque" in Manitoba at least, and is about as common a word as "baseball cap" is in the States.

Being an American in Canada, I learned some important differences early on -

Can - Am:
toque - beanie
Bellaclava - "ski mask"
mitts - gloves (both are used)
hoodie - hooded sweatshirt
parka - pullover
runners - tennis shoes

I don't know if it's just the Midwest and the Canadian Prairies, but people there tend to use "coat" rather than "jacket" -- I have the feeling that there's a difference between the two now -- a "coat" being thicker, and warmer than a "jacket", which is thinner and weighs less. What do you guys think?

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Postby Kirk » 2006-01-03, 21:15

Pips wrote:
Kirk wrote:Is "tuque" a familiar word to the Canadians here?


It most certainly is! (Although I've never seen it spelled "tuke" before!) And I can imagine they're certainly more widespread here than in California!

I've heard Americans call them "beanies", "knit caps" or "skullcaps". But to us Canadians it will always just be a tuque.


Cool, thanks for confirming that :)

Gormur wrote:It's spelled "toque" in Manitoba at least, and is about as common a word as "baseball cap" is in the States.


Yeah I also read that "toque" could be a spelling variant.

Gormur wrote:Being an American in Canada, I learned some important differences early on -

Can - Am:
toque - beanie
Bellaclava - "ski mask"
mitts - gloves (both are used)
hoodie - hooded sweatshirt
parka - pullover
runners - tennis shoes


That's interesting about "hooded sweatshirt," as I've recently noticed people have been saying "hoodie" here, which hadn't been that common until relatively recently. It seems there's a slight difference in meaning, at least here. A "sweatshirt" is the standard item (and may or may not have a hood, but often does), while "hoodies" (for people who use the term) tend to be specific kinds of sweatshirts with lettering. If anything, the lettering and markings on hoodies here tend to be trendier while sweatshirts are just standard affairs.
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Postby culúrien » 2006-01-04, 0:57

Well I actually never say hooded sweatshirt. That's akward. I say hoodie most of the time. A hoodie is simply a sweatshirt with a hood for me. There's no stylistic difference between them.
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Postby Gormur » 2006-01-04, 1:12

celebrian23 wrote:Well I actually never say hooded sweatshirt. That's akward. I say hoodie most of the time. A hoodie is simply a sweatshirt with a hood for me. There's no stylistic difference between them.


Ok, interesting. Perhaps it's a regional term.


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