If you talk to anyone studying English as a second language, they'll tell you how hard it is to learn. If you grew up speaking English as your only language, it probably doesn't seem that difficult; but as a bilingual native English speaker who learned a second language later in life I can tell you, English is WEIRD!
English has so many inconsistencies in spelling, pronunciation, verb conjugation...don't get me started. American English, UK English, and Australian English all spell things differently and the same word can have completely different meanings or connotations.
It wasn't until my freshman year of high school when I started learning Japanese, in which a word is always pronounced exactly like it looks like it should be, that I gained a real understanding of how hard English would be for someone to try to learn as a second language. Even as a native speaker who loves the English language and writes for a living, I sometimes struggle with its many homophones (there, their, and they're, for example) and grammatical inconsistencies. Even our mnemonics that are taught in school to help remember these differences don't always hold true. "I before E, except after C" is something most American children are taught in elementary school, but what about neighbor, weight, and veil?
Redditor STUDkatz asked:
Below, you'll find an assortment of the weird quirks of the language that you've probably never thought about.
My Brain Hurts
English might be difficult. It can be understood through tough thorough thought though.
It's Right, But Why?
A native speaker has a knowledge of implicit grammar (through learning naturally as a child) that would require an adult years to study and review.
You're spewing out the correct answer but god help you if someone asks you to show your work.
I am an editor and I still sometimes have trouble when asked why something should be a certain way. I just KNOW it's wrong (or correct) and I can't always explain why.
It took until i was 16 to realize there's actually a rule to figure out if you should use a or an... Before that (and admittedly since) I was just going with the one that didn't sound dumb out loud
People assume a lot of silly things, such as words that can be combined always are.
Examples: "Yeah I maybe doing that later." or "I do that everyday."
I want to punch myself for writing that.
Running A Bit LongGiphy
Run has hundreds of uses (forms). Last I checked it was a little over 250. You run a program, you run over toads in your car, the chicken run has a duck in it, The ads run too long on the TV, you run out of toilet paper, you run down to the shop in the car, you run up a bill at the shop after the assistant gave you the run around. You run into a friend but you have to run home as you had the runs and something was running down your leg. You run to the toilet but you run into a problem. Your kid is running a lemonade stand in the doorway. You're now running a little brown cable along your path. You hope nobody takes a picture and runs it in the paper as you are running for office. Your stance is against gun runners but you're hauling a little brown nuke right now. I've run out but there's more.
Sometimes The Joke Is In The Translation
Pakistani urdu-english speaker, there are a LOT of words that are absolutely hilarious when taken in the context of english but my 2 favorite have to be which is a letter in the urdu alphabet and is pronounced exactly like "Meme" and another which is a punjabi name which is literally spelled and pronounced "Butt", there is also a national level bakery brand called "Butt"
Urdu is a great language
Strength Or Weakness?
There is a common nine letter word with only a single vowel in English.
That word is "strengths".
Adjectives have a specific order they are supposed to be arranged. For example, you would never say the green large five dragons. You would say the five large green dragons. The order that English typically follows for adjectives is:
1. Quantity or number
2. Quality or opinion
7. Proper adjective
8. Purpose or qualifier
Rhymes with Confusion
Read and lead rhyme and so do read and lead, but read and lead don't rhyme and neither do read and lead.
About Time You Realized It
I never really appreciated the word "about" until I started learning French and realized there are about a couple dozen different words you have to learn about where in English we would just say "about." It's just about one of the most versatile and useful words we have.
Native English speaker here.
How irritatingly complex and nuanced English (and other Germanic languages) verbs are for having tons of common verbs that change meaning completely or only subtly with one flip of a preposition and sometimes even more so by stacking a few more on.
Put + on, in, out, off, toward, into, forth, away, up, up with, down, past
Set + on, off, out, in, up, down
Run + off, on, out, into, away, up, down, over, at, through
Take + on, out, in, away, up, over, off
Break + in, out, up, down, up with, into, out of away
Give + up, out, away, in, out
Get + on, in, out, up, down, away, away with, along, by, back, through, across, over, into, at
Work + up, up to, out, through
Come + in, out, by, across, through, over, at
Do + in, away with, over, up
Hang + up, in, out, out with, over, with, off, back
Then ones where the options are fewer, they're either somewhat related or *not at all*.
Chat vs chat someone up.
Make something up vs make out.
This list isn't exhaustive because I got tired of thinking but I've heard many a friend moan and groan about how every combination seems like a whole new word or phrase to memorize. That even if it looks familiar, they can't trust it. Most other languages just have a unique word for each idea or at least morphology that is somehow linked. Work + through makes sense in that it implies you're belaboring or in the midst of resolving something (imagine pushing *through* something). So some make at least a little logical sense. Put + up + with has no clue in it that it means to endure or tolerate. Come + over is just like "went from toward me above something?"
Set + off (an alarm) makes no sense at all. Isn't it actually going *on*?
Break + in (to use a new item for the first time, implying the start of the process of making it yours) — just "breaking" your boots is bad but if you do it on the inside, it's desired?
Give + out as in, "my car's engine gave out." (went kaput) Did it hand you a piece of candy?
If repeating doing something is "doing something over," then what do these mean:
At least in languages like Spanish that are better stocked in the logic department, these all are treated as different ideas that they are.
Venir a visitar
EDIT: Spelling mistakes and additional examples.
No two people react the same way to a pungent odor, gratuitous violence in film and television, or unruly, off-putting behavior.
As some people have a fairly high tolerance for gore, aren't bothered by taste and smell, and are so patient that they simply aren't bothered by anyone.
Although, everyone has their limits.
And despite what they might say, there are very few people who don't have one thing which even the very thought of will make them gag, just a little bit.
"What genuinely disgusts you?"
Do They Think It Will Just Vanish?
"People not flushing their poop or pee in public toilets."- Acceptable_Fee_1280
"It was that hard to pull the little lever down?"- Scotsgit73
Always Carry Mints...
"Another person's hot breath in my face."
"For any reason."- MaryEstradaGTNickelodeon Bad Breath GIF by SpongeBob SquarePantsGiphy
"People who abuse their pets."- roseteaXx
Being Tricked Into Purchases...
"Ads with a fake close button that just redirect you to the link, particularly pop-up ads."
"I forgot about the mobile game ads with fake mini games that redirect you to the App Store."
"Those might be even worse."- Tyler_Martin1
Cleaning Comes At A Price...
"The goo in the sink drain once you’ve done the dishes."
"Touching this to clean the sink is always a gut-wrenching, vomit-inducing moment."- meiliraijow
Men Marking Their Territory...
"Sitting on a toilet seat with pee on it."- KAWAiiANGXL
We All Do It... Doesn't Make It Any Less Gross...
I Mean, COME ON!
"Just hang onto your sh*t for two minutes and put it in a bin instead of just throwing it on the ground."- ElmerWolfeLOdriving eric cartman GIF by South Park Giphy
No Matter The Package, Always Bad For You!
"Carrying around a bottle of your own brown cloudy spit that smells like absolute death just skeeves me out on a level I can barely even describe."
"Bonus points if you're the douche who leaves the spit bottles or cups for other people to clean up."- Porn_is_my_bae
We all have our limits.
But even if you aren't wholeheartedly repulsed by any or all of these things, that still doesn't mean you should tolerate it!
How else will people learn to stop?
It's rare for a day to go by where women don't, quite understandably, complain about the annoying, even misogynistic behavior of men.
Addiction to video games, poor hygiene, too much excitement over a football or basketball game, bad table manners.
The list goes on and on.
But men don't only annoy women with their behavior.
Indeed, plenty of other men get equally annoyed or revolted by certain stereotypically "male" behavior, and wish it would come to an end.
"Men of Reddit, what is something you wish other men would stop doing?"
Taking Others Down To Bring Themselves Up
"Insulting their friends to look cool in front of a girl."- SuvenPan
Always Needing To Be The "Tough Guy"
"I wish y’all would stop trying to be Mr. tough arrogant guy when an attractive women is in your presence."- Relevant-Quality2196·
It's Just Basic Hygeine!
"Not washing hands after using public bathrooms."- truetrusterWash Hands Reaction GIF by Leroy PattersonGiphy
Women Are Not Property!
"Stop hitting on other dudes' girlfriend."
"Some guys take it as a challenge and it’s pretty f*cked up."- Blowmansalad·
"Being overly horny and hitting on women non stop who clearly are uncomfortable."
"It’s hard to watch."- cgollin34
Learn Some Manners!
"That thing where a girl turns you down so you suddenly call her an ugly b*tch."
"It’s really not hard to NOT be a rude piece of sh*t, and it makes you sound pathetic."
"Have some respect and imagine your grandmother could hear you."- leastlyharmfulSeason 3 Episode 13 GIF by Parks and RecreationGiphy
What Are You Trying To Prove, Exactly?
"Acting overly manly and not smiling, like chill man I’m not trying to pee on your territory."- incognitoburrito2022
"Stop approaching women in grocery store parking lots! "
"My girlfriend mentions that guys, often way older guys, will try to talk to her and ask her out while she’s carrying groceries."
"She’s had to stop wearing headphones because guys will follow her trying to get her attention."
"The worst was a guy who knocked on her window when she was sitting in her car."
"Nobody taught me, a normal dude, how not to be creepy."
"Where the hell did you guys learn to do this?"- UptownShenanigans
Not Fooling Anyone
"Joining MLMs and being really vague about what they do."
"I don’t want an exclusive chance to gain you as a mentor, I sat next to you in pre-algebra and know that the concept of math escapes you."
"Also stop renting luxury vehicles for a weekend and pretending you 'made it'."
"Maybe I’m just a hater but if your whole plan is to not just fake it till you make it but to 'flex' till you make it then I’m not interested in whatever opportunity you’re trying to sell me."- Exact_Thought_185
Its Sexual Assault. STOP IT!
"The unwarranted peen pics need to stop."- Ratakoa
When other "bros" are so openly put off by "bro" culture, maybe that means it's time has passed?
But seriously, did anyone find "bro" culture attractive?
After all, were we laughing with the boys of the American Pie films, or laughing at them...
Successful people who come from humble beginnings usually don't forget where they came from.
But some of those who were already born into privilege and wealth may claim to be compassionate towards people who are financially disadvantaged.
But unless they've lived the experience as someone from the lower class or have a deep understanding of what life is like on the other side, the wealthy will never understand what it's like to be poor.
Curious to hear about interactinos with the affluent from strangers online, Redditor Salazard260 asked:
"Poor people of reddit, what's the most comically out of touch 'advice' you've been given by someone wealthier?"
When it comes to working normal jobs, rich people just don't understand.
Easier Said Than Done
"A mom to my mom, a single mother with three kids: 'you should just stop working if you are so stressed about it.'"
"Sounds like a psychologist I went and saw once, spent the hour talking about how much pressure I felt being the sole source of income in the house, to be told 'sounds like your job is stressing you out, you should quit!' When I asked how I’d pay the bills his response was 'I can help you apply for a new job, I’m really good at job applications, I’ve got every job I applied for! - yeah mate I don’t think that’s going to help. Never went back."
"Not really advice, but one of my high school friends came from a rich family. But because he wasn't really that motivated in life, his parents encouraged him to find a summer job."
"He was going to go job-hunting at the mall, working in retail. I asked him how much he wanted to earn. He said, 'Not too much. $40 per hour should be a good start.' This was in the early 2000s."
"It reminds me of the Arrested Development scene where Lucille thinks a banana costs $10."
When it comes to renting an apartment, these are not the people who should be weighing in with their thoughts to help.
Clueless About Rent
"I had a boss at the time tell me it cant be more than 800 bucks for rent in the DC area when I asked for a pay raise. The minimum rent I could find at the time was closer to 1800."
Let's Start With Step 1
"That I need to buy several apartments and rent them out. Unfortunately, he did not tell me where to get money to buy several apartments."
When it comes to family and financials, we're all not the same.
That's Not How That Works
"I remember when I was at high school and I mentioned to someone that I'd like a gaming PC but couldn't afford it, he said 'can you not just ask your parents for the money?'"
"I said no because there was nothing left over after bills and groceries."
"Yeah, but if you ask realllllyyyyy nicely, couldn't they give you the money?"
"Like what goddamn money? The money for the food we eat? The money for our electricity bill? Sure, no doubt my family are happy to suffer just so I can have a piece of tech I don't need."
Ignorance Is Bliss
"I had a friend like that and one time pulled out a pen and paper and did my family's financials roughly in front of them. I showed income, taxes, utilities, insurance, groceries, gas, car payments, loan payments, etc and then showed how little was left over and then said that some of that needs to go into savings/retirement just in case. I then asked them 'so where is that money I ask my parents for coming from?'"
"He sat there dumbfounded for a bit, I think one: that I knew all this off the top of my head (the recession made me hyper aware of financials) and two: it started sink in how ignorant he was about money in general, and how good he had it. He wasn't a bad dude, and wasn't one of those who thinks money was infinite, but I guess didn't realize how much 100 bucks was to a lot of people."
The Other Way Around
"'Just have your parents give you the money'.... B*tch, I support my parents."
Going Nowhere Fast
"I had a buddy in college that asked me to drive him to the next town over. He had a car but his parents said he was spending to much in the gas card. His solution was to bum a ride but told me it wasn’t fair for him to pay me for gas out of his allowance because I had a job."
"I’m still stunned by the mental gymnastics that dude went through to justify his behavior."
"After dumping me my long-tine girlfriend would occasionally reach out with her crazy rants."
"One of them was I should just dump my parents somewhere, as in literally dropping them off on some corner, and let them fend for themselves."
"I dodged a rocket not marrying her."
The rich could afford many luxuries that are unattainable for the rest of us, and good for them.
But when it comes to offering any kind of wisdom or suggestion to improve our financial standing in life, money can't buy them respect when they are completely out of touch.
There's a fairly common formula in movies geared toward a teenage audience.
A group of teenagers face one central conflict, to varying degrees of importance and severity, but manage to solve it in a surprisingly short manner of time.
The heroes of these films are usually a hodgepodge of traditional high school archetypes (star athlete, math nerd, girl whose beauty is disguised by a pair of glasses), all of whom the intended audience can completely relate to and root for.
And then we have the adult characters, who are often buffoonish stereotypes, or the outright villain, whose sole mission is to ensure the protagonist will not achieve their ultimate goal.
As teenagers, we often find ourselves ready to boo these grown-ups from the minute they appear on the screen.
But when we revisit these movies as adults, we find ourselves noticing that their behavior isn't quite as bad as we remembered.
Or, more shockingly, we actually find ourselves rooting for them!
"What teen movie is the epitome of 'the older I get, the more I agree with the adult?'"
The Teacher Was Right All Along...
"Rewatching 'Scrubs', I realize I’m no longer a JD., I’ve become a Cox."- RenegadeRinker
They Were Just Being Protective!
"I watched 'Sixteen Candles' recently and I now do not approve of Samantha going anywhere near Jake Ryan."-goblininstigator
All It Takes Is A Little Perspective
"Sadly, 'The Wonder Years'."
"I always couldn’t believe the dad was real, with his pissed off attitude from work."
"Now I understand."- hashnThe Wonder Years Thumbs Down GIFGiphy
Nothing Wrong With A Little Precision And Order!
"The movie 'Juno'."
"Jennifer Garner's character is at first portrayed as a 'square', then you realize she's a mature adult and her husband is a man-baby."- DaveFarted
Add It Up, The Wedding Cost Nearly $150,00!
"Not a teen movie, but 'Father of the Bride'."
"Watching it as a kid, Steve Martin seemed like an old grump."
"Rewatching it as an adult, holy sh*t he is the only sane person in that movie."- DrOctopusMD
It Was Literally His Job To Protect Them!
"'The Lion King'."
"Oh I thought Zazu was just an old fun-killer."
"What do you mean, Simba can't be king?"
"Why would you prevent the kids from going where they want?"
"As an adult and father, I'm 100% Team Zazu."- Oneiric86the lion king GIF by DisneyGiphy
Seriously, Would Your Dad Have Been So Cool About It?...
"As a new father, I hope to be like Jim’s dad when my little one is a teenager."
"Caring, loving and a complete embarrassment to them."- BanjoPhatterson
It's A Parent's Job To Worry.
"The mom in 'Ice Princess'."
"So you have a daughter who has a talent for and seems to like physics and has a shot of getting into Harvard."
"This girl throws it away for ice skating where she has only been competing for less than a year, where if she gets injured she's done and when she reaches 30 she's pretty much done."
"There is no way she is at an olympic level at that point she would need years of training! "
"Hell yes I would advise against it to!"- testmonkey254
Always Be Respectful Of Your Roommate!
"Goob, 'Meet the Robinsons'."- beepboop232Meet The Robinsons Google GIFGiphy
People Are Complicated
"He’s just trying to do something right and being a good dad."- LukeLJS123
As teens we're inclined to revolt from our parents and teachers, or even be revolted by them.
But the older we get, the more we understand that nine times out of ten, they were just looking out for us.
Just as we realize that Mr. Hall of Clueless was being pretty generous giving a C to a student who didn't seem to know how to pronounce "Haitian"...