February 3rd, 2008

misc - 月

Wishing I spoke some Thai...

I've recently started volunteer work teaching ESL to adults, and my class is the beginning class. One of my students is from Thailand, and she's been working on arithmetic on the side, mainly by working on worksheets on long division and multiplication, as well as some addition and subtraction. As there's some English -> Thai translations on the back of one of these worksheets, I'm assuming she's literate in Thai, although I suppose it's possible that the teacher who prepared these worksheets for her wrote them, and she's not actually literate. In any case, a lot of the answers she gives are really close, but at the same time very wrong (52022/8=652.6). Unfortunately, she apparently either mainly does the problems in her head, or does them on a separate sheet of paper and then copies the answers over. I did ask her to do a multi-digit multiplication problem on paper for me, but I noticed that she never did any carrying of digits on paper, which is fine for those who are used to multiplication, but especially for a beginner can lead to errors. In all honesty, I almost wonder if she isn't thoroughly aware that these numbers need to be carried.
So, my actual question is three-fold. With the assumption that this person may have never been formally taught arithmetic, and (depending on how politeness is linguistically encoded) that she is much older than I am, how would you say/write the following in Thai:
- Please show your work (do your work on this paper?) so I can see where you are making mistakes.
- It might help you to not make mistakes if you write down the numbers you are carrying. (I'm not even sure how to break down "to carry a number" into non-jargon in English...)
Finally, while I'm at it, are any of you familiar with online arithmetic explanations written in Thai? Or ones that are thorough yet not language-dependent?


I find it quite curious that in English - at least British English - many sentences can be prefixed with "Do you know," or "Do you know what?", as in the following example:

"Do you know, I think we're lost."


"Do you know what? I love you."

I suppose it's quite similar to suffixing a sentence with "you/y'know?", as in:

"I just wanted to talk to you, y'know?"

...although, looking at that now, I feel it has a different nuance which I'd find difficult to define. Anyway, that's not really my point. I'd like to know if any other languages you know of have this kind of construction, or at least one with the same kind of meaning. For example, I can't say I've ever heard a Spanish person say:

"Sabes, pienso que nos hemos perdido."


"¿Sabes qué? Te quiero."

BUT I think I have heard someone say something like:

"Te quise ver, ¿sabes?"

Any and all languages very welcome!
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Pluralization of loanwords

I've been living in Oslo, Norway since last summer, and I've noticed a few things as I've become more and more fluent in the language. It seems that a lot of english loanwords are in their plural forms unnecessarily. For example, if you wanted to say "I have a muffin", you'd say "jeg har en muffins", or if you know a small trick, you'd say "jeg kan et lite triks". This doesn't happen every time, but oddly it seems to applied to baked goods. Does anyone have ANY idea why this happened? I'm really confused by it, honestly. Also, does this happen in any other language that anyone here knows of? This may be a very common phenomenon, but I've never run into it before.

(no subject)

Hi all. A while back a distant relative in Canada contacted my grandfather, asking if he had any information about members of the family. She sent him a geneaology chart when she'd finished with it, or at least what she had at the time. My grandfather showed it to me, and I copied it.

The Wolcott's family motto is "Nullius addictus jurare in rerba magistri." I think this is Latin, if I'm wrong, please correct me. The translation I have is "Accustomed to swear in the words of no master." Is this an accurate translation?

The Bates's family motto is "Eh corde et mann." I don't have a translation for this one, could someone help me out? I think it's either Latin or French, but I'm not sure. Also, "Eh" could be "En," the way I wrote the letter could be either.

Thanks, all!
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    curious curious

Portuguese, Haitian Creole

Hello all!

I'm a nursing student who just started the last in-hospital placement of my curriculum (yay!). I'm working on a postpartum unit at a hospital that is known for its polyglotism - my preceptor told me that about 85% of the patient population needs a translator when talking to the doctors. The main languages that they see are Spanish, Portuguese, and Haitian Creole.

What I'm trying to do is put together a list for myself of phrases that I'll be using all the time, translated into all three languages. I'd really appreciate your help in completing it. A lot of these were taken from a book on Spanish for healthcare professionals. I took my best stab at the Portuguese, but I was teaching myself from Wikipedia, and the Creole I didn't even attempt.

Gracias / obrigada / mesi!

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baby me
  • arosoff

Hebrew: 'ח?

A friend ran into the combination 'ח on this page:


What sound is it? Does it duplicate an Arabic sound or something? Neither of us has ever encountered it before.

(PS - Apologies if the chupchik is on the wrong side--MacOS doesn't correctly transfer it to the left unless another letter follows, so I put it in LTR. My luck it will display in reverse in Windows or something! It should, of course, be chet-chupchik.)

ETA: Found it on Wikipedia - although there appears to be some confusion about whether it's the uvular or velar fricative!