… und wie alles endete

Wieder mehr als ein Jahr vergangen … und das Comenius-Projekt ist zu seinem guten Abschluss gekommen.

T-Shirt für die Amberger Projektwoche "S4T"

Zur Erinnerung: In unserem Projekt “Spotlights for Tolerance” (ja, “on” wäre natürlich auch eine schöne Präposition gewesen, aber “for” ließ sich im Acronym so schön als Zahl schreiben: S4T) ging es darum, dass wir [...]

Wanna try Chinese – or something easy-peasy?

A website dedicated to language learning ( has just published a ranking of languages
according to how difficult it is to acquire a certain degree of proficiency – measured by how long it takes you
to get there.
Interesting fact: German isn’t on the list – on none of them. What does that tell us? It can’t mean [...]

2010 – how (not) to pronounce it

In the Language Log, Mark Liberman writes about the oral version of the new year’s name:

All around the English-speaking world, pundits are wondering in print about how to pronounce the year 2010. Is it “twenty ten”, or “two thousand ten”, or “two thousand and ten”, or what?

The conclusion is usually “twenty ten”, for one reason [...]

Ouch – was that a push-back?

It is what it is.
Ron Rosenbaum writes a very entertaining article on “The Catchphrase of the Decade”.

Maybe it’s not all superfluous to quote a definition of “catchphrase” (courtesy of Longman’s DCE online):

a short well-known phrase made popular by an entertainer or politician, so that people think of that person when they hear it

I don’t think [...]

Richard Powers’ declarative phrases

Once again, the wonderful Language Log gives its readers something to think about. In this case, Mark Liberman, Trustee Professor of Phonetics at the University of Pennsylvania, analyses Kurt Andersen’s interview with novelist Richard Powers: “Richard Powers on his way to a decision”.
The whole interview (9 mins.) can be listened to here, thanks to Studio [...]

“Nicht übertreiben!”

Diese Formulierung sollte sich die Lehrkraft einprägen – denn sie ist geeignet, sinnvolle Grenzen beim Alkoholkonsum (und wohl auch in anderen Kontexten) zu definieren. So jedenfalls fasst der “Lehrerfreund” die Einschätzung der Staatsanwaltschaft zusammen, bei der es darum ging, ob der Lehrer der drei Berufsschüler, die im April 2009 bei einer Klassenfahrt in die Türkei [...]

OED’s word of the day: “googly”

How I sometimes wish I knew a thing about cricket …
“A ball which breaks from the off, though bowled with apparent leg-break action.”
Sheer poetry. Magic.

I wonder whether the founders of Google had that in mind, with or without apparent leg-break action.
Well done, the O.E.D., anyway (as usual).
In case you haven’t heard of my special relationship [...]

Giant Balls of Feathers

Geoffrey Pullum (at the Language Log) is angry about some journalists’ tendency to make things up if it’s got to do with linguistics. In particular, he mentions a text from the Economist on the occasion of Miriam Makeba’s death. What “Epiglottal clicks and giant balls of feathers” have in common or why they are wrong [...]

Studs Terkel, recorder of America’s voices

Wie die Zeitungen (NYTimes, Guardian, ChicagoTribune) und andere Blogger (Herr Rau, Language Log) bereits schrieben, ist Studs Terkel am 31. Oktober gestorben. Der Economist hat in der aktuellen Ausgabe ebenfalls einen schönen Nachruf:
Studs Terkel, recorder of America’s voices.

Ein kurzer Ausschnitt:

Mr Terkel was a man on a mission. First, he meant to fix memories before they [...]

Sign Language – Intriguing Telegraph Galleries

The online edition of the Telegraph has a varied collection of galleries, among them “Sign Language”, at the moment already in its 21st week.
Have a look at this week’s gallery, which – among other things – has a pretty road sign at the foot of a hill, reading “Hill blocks view” :)
Sign language: week 21
It [...]