January 23rd, 2017


Learning English while watching TV

I guess this is a question mostly for the non native speakers in here but everyone is welcome to join in of course. Basically, I learnt all my English starting about 15 years ago by watching TV and reading fanfictions in original language. In Germany everything on TV is dubbed so there isn't that much exposure to the language like in other countries.

My favorite TV show at the time was "Stargate SG-1" and Richard Dean Anderson as Jack O'Neill has taught/teached (teached? Really?) me a lot of great phrases and slang words. Things like "shrink", "crap", "just peachy", "piece of cake", "Ya think?" and many more. Let's gloss over the fact that I once tried to look up "Yeahsureyabetcha" in the dictionary! D'oh! (<-- which I also tried to look up)

Once when being tortured by a bad guy he accused him of being a bastard for ending a sentence with a preposition. Something to take note of! ;)

For a long time I sounded like a snarky air force colonel. Later, mainly from interviews with John Barrowman, my English got mixed with British terms, he likes to use for example "chuffed", "snogging", "telly".

And just recently I developed a love for "Gotham" and particularly Alfred Pennyworth, played by Sean Pertwee. Of course words like "bugger", "oh dear" or "bloody" aren't exactly new for me, but still they do stand out as lovely and unique in an otherwise American show. And I see that "innit" does creep into my (written) language now. I'm not even sure how to spell it properly. In'it? Inn't? Same like suddenly using "cannae" after being at vacation in Scotland.

So my question just for fun is: Do you remember if you also have learnt words or phrases like that? Words you still use today and fondly think of the origin maybe? Do you still remember what they are and where you learnt them from? (<-- there's that preposition again. But I also learnt English from reading internet forums, it's not my fault if they don't use proper grammar in there!)