web analytics

Hello, Department of Useless Information?

If y’all don’t have the Google Translate plugin, I recommend. Wherever you are on the web, you can highlight some text and a little blue translate button pops up next to your cursor. Magic.

That’s how I accidentally discovered the Cebuano language, which is spoken in the southern islands of the Philippines and is called Bisaya or Binisaya by native speakers. For most of us, I can’t imagine a language we would less need to learn conversational phrases in, so here you go.

Sometimes, I just like to hear people speak to me in another language.

None of it sounded at all familiar until we got to kumusta? And I thought naw, that’s got to be cómo estás – and it is. Turns out, the Philippines were a Spanish colony for 300 years. *shrug emoji*

Hey, did I ever tell you about the faulty soundcard I had in my first computer? Or was it a modem? I forget. It picked up a local Portuguese radio station and happily chattered to me in Portuguese all day.

The only words I remember were an ad for el Mundo de los Licores – Liquor World – but confusingly that’s in Spanish.

I am not good with languages.


Comment from ExpressoBold
Time: April 22, 2021, 8:07 pm

Yay! The Moro people… Moro = Moor = (They came from Spain to spread Islam).

Language spoken: Bangsamoro… yep: Bangsa + Moor = KA-BOOM + (They came from Spain to spread Islam).

Duh Philippines is not on my world travel itenerary.


Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: April 22, 2021, 8:43 pm

It is always useful to speak with your comrades in arms during a rebellion in a language that the government doesn’t understand and can not translate. Thus the patois of inner-city gangs.
Even in old-time black and white movies, the gangsters speak slang that both signify their membership in the gang and conceals the topic of discussion.

Comment from p2
Time: April 22, 2021, 8:50 pm

@Scandia, these days that can be accomplished simply by speaking proper English.

Comment from Gromulin
Time: April 22, 2021, 9:15 pm

I became a fan of Indonesian food on my Honeymoon about 22 years ago. A lot of the dishes I liked the best had the word Goreng in them. I don’t know why but earlier this year I was craving some Indo food and thought about Goreng. It must be one of those Asian descriptors like Yummy! or Delicious! right? Looked it up in Google translate. No, it just means Fried. My ‘Mercan palate strikes again.

Comment from durnedyankee
Time: April 23, 2021, 2:03 pm

Spanish Colony, until “You may fire when you are ready Gridley.”

Just had Nasi Goreng 2 weeks or so ago in a Sri Lankan ‘fusion’ restaurant recommended by Mrs. D’s Sri Lankan boss. Fried rice, with an egg on top. I was hoping for something a trifle more exotic AND it turns out it’s Indonesian, not specifically Sri Lankan.

“Oh the monkey’s have no tails in Zamboanga
Oh the monkey’s have no tails in Zamboanga
The monkey’s have no tails
they was bitten off by whales
So the monkey’s have no tails in Zamboanga”

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: April 23, 2021, 3:08 pm

Speaking of foreign languages—JavaMan and I have been watching English gardening shows, and love them. But we struggle to understand everything that is said; we keeping trying though. (Thank goodness for the backup key on the remote.) “CompAHst” makes us laugh. We use compOHst. But I’ve watched so much Monty Don that I’m starting to say compAHst, too 😉 Poor old Monty would probably faint if I told him we get about 16 inches of rain in the average year.

Comment from blake
Time: April 25, 2021, 4:21 pm

Well, “mundo” and “licor” would also be Portuguese, though I don’t know enough about grammar to know how it would be put together.

Japanese has a practice of adopting a lot of English phrases, such that you can occasionally get the idea that you understand Japanese when you’re watching a movie and suddenly you don’t need the subtitles.

I find Portuguese is kind of like that with Spanish. I don’t know if they adopt Spanish phrases, but every now and again, there’ll be a phrase that even I (with my rudimentary Spanish) can understand—but always surrounded by a sea of things completely incomprehensible.

Write a comment

(as if I cared)

(yeah. I'm going to write)

(oooo! you have a website?)

Beware: more than one link in a comment is apt to earn you a trip to the spam filter, where you will remain -- cold, frightened and alone -- until I remember to clean the trap. But, hey, without Akismet, we'd be up to our asses in...well, ass porn, mostly.

<< carry me back to ol' virginny