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Picture of Kalleh
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Jerry, obviously you are pointing out what you consider to be an error; you think the word "compatriot" only means coming from one's same country. It's okay; you can point out my presumed errors directly. I don't bite.

However, I would argue with you that it really is an error. When I look up "compatriot" in dictionaries that come from England (e.g., the OED or the COED), I see that's the way they use the word. However, when I look it up in the more American dictionaries it has definitions like, "COMPANION, COLLEAGUE <her compatriots in academia>" (MW) or "comrade: a fellow member of a group or organization, especially a military or political one" (Encarta World English Dictionary, North American Edition). I have always used the "compatriot" as in the latter definitions. Being from academia, the suggested use from MW is on target. In the latter definition from Ecarta, its use could mean a fellow member of wordcraft.

So, this time, I think I am right. I think you will all admit that when I am wrong, I admit it. But sometimes, believe it or not, I am not wrong! Wink
 
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Picture of Richard English
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Compatriot would never mean friend in the UK. It always means a person from one's own country.


Richard English
 
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Very interesting. On the one hand, OED's definition confirms what Richard says. On the other hand, OED's quotations include one which would seem to support Kallh's further meaning of the term: "1683 E. HOOKER Pref. Pordage's Myst. Div. 107 Your Friend, Acquaintante, or Compatriot".

The usages in the recent UK press also confirm Richard's reading. Interestingly, they were almost all in the area of sports. Would that seem accurate to you UKers? Wonder why this is.
 
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Picture of Richard English
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The usages in the recent UK press also confirm Richard's reading. Interestingly, they were almost all in the area of sports. Would that seem accurate to you UKers? Wonder why this is.

Sport (especially football) is a consuming passion for many people in the UK.

Large amounts of news time have been taken up today telling us the David Beckham is going to the Los Angeles to captain a US football team for a quite obscene amount of money. A very large proportion of all of our national newspapers is taken up with sport rather than news. Fortunately The Times produces the football section as a separate pull-out that I can throw straight into the bin without even opening it.


Richard English
 
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Picture of arnie
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Much sport consists of international teams playing each other. Compatriots can therefore be colleagues in the same team. However, many players in English football, especially, come from abroad. Arsenal, for example has several French players and reporters might use "compatriot" to describe two players in the team who happen to be French. There are French players in plenty of other clubs, though, so "compatriots" could be used to describe two opposing players.

In short, we only use the word in the sense of "coming from the same country", as Richard says.


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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I always understood compatriot to mean fellow countryman as well.
 
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Also, we just don't use that word "keen" like our English compatriots do.

Last time I heard "keen" was in Annie Hall.
 
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Regarding British/American uses of "keen":
In the UK you would say "I'm keen on cooking" (meaning American "I like/am interested in cooking") and Americans would say, in slang, "That's a keen fishing rod" (meaning it's very nice). American "keen" is outdated, being used more until the sixties, and smile-provoking now.
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Precisely, Mark, and it's so nice to see you back again.

Neveu, I am surprised about your and Jerry's only seeing "compatriots" used to mean from the same country. I've definitely heard it the more general way a fair bit. Perhaps it's a regional use here in the midwest?
 
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Picture of arnie
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A similar word (not used over here but heard in Westerns and the like) would be compadre.
I wonder if some Americans are mixing up the two?


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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"Compadre" is sometimes heard in Spanish/Mexican-related films (often Westerns), but means something much more then "compatriot". It implies a deeper relationship than does "compatriot", having to do with familial or filial feelings rather than belonging to a group, whether that group be related to football or citizenship.
 
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Picture of zmježd
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Compadre

For the literal-minded it is literally a co-father (or co-parent). The relationship of compadre refers to that between the biological parents of a child and its godparents. It's a sort of blood relatives by adoption concept.

[Corrected typo.]

This message has been edited. Last edited by: zmježd,


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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Americans would say, in slang, "That's a keen fishing rod" (meaning it's very nice). American "keen" is outdated, being used more until the sixties, and smile-provoking now.

When I worked for a year in Boston, Mass, in the 60s I often heard this use of 'keen', but also the very similar use of 'neat' as a general pleasantry (like nice) which was strange to my English background, where 'neat' meant a tidy, compact presentation of something or somebody.
Is 'neat' still applied in this general sense in the US of A?
 
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Yes, "neat" is still used in that way in the USA, although it dates the person using it!
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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A similar word (not used over here but heard in Westerns and the like) would be compadre.
I wonder if some Americans are mixing up the two?

Arnie, I don't think the Americans are getting anything "mixed up." As I state above, the dictionaries are citing it that way. I believe the word has just evolved a bit differently here, though perhaps that's what you meant.


Yes, "neat" and "cool" are both used. I don't necessarily think saying "neat" dates the speaker, but maybe I am one of those who is dated. Wink
 
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I would guess that most Americans think "compadre" is Spanish for "companion".
 
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Picture of arnie
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Perhaps "mixing up" was a poor choice of words. What I meant is that perhaps Americans are looking at the Spanish compadre and use "compatriot" in a similar way.

As I said, "compatriot" can only be used to mean "fellow-countryman" in this country. I see that the dictionaries cited for the alternative meaning you mention are solely American.


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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You would be corrrect in assuming that most Americans equate "compadre" with "companion", although it would have to be a very close companion, not just an acquaintance.
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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This is one of my favorite threads...

As I was driving today, I heard on NPR about the need to get rid of elephants in Africa, though both the interviewer and the interviewee were British. I so enjoyed their accents and the use of words.

However, one thing interested me. While the interview was somewhat formal (and sounded more so because of the accents), they used some really informal words or phrases and seemed to have fun doing so. The interviewer, for example, said, "What process will you use to stamp out the elephants?" Then later on, the interviewee was explaining why birth control probably wouldn't help. He said, "It's unlikely the elephants would line up and present their bums for the injections." The interviewer seemed to like that comment! Big Grin
 
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Picture of Caterwauller
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LOL about elephants and birth control. Makes me think of an old joke about Texans and condoms. I'll try to think of it and post it somewhere.

I wonder - couldn't they just put birth control pills in their kibble? Oh wait - these are wild elephants? Interesting condomundrum. Maybe they need to tie off thier scrotums? (there, I used the word again!)


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Picture of BobHale
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If you're prepared to approach a bull elephant with a piece of string and "The Big Boy Scout Book of Useful Knots", you're braver than I am.
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Oh, I forgot about another comment made by the man being interviewed. He was comparing something (I can't recall what, but I don't think it was the elephants scrotum Wink) to the size of a "fizzy drink can." I thought that hilarious!

I think the problem with birth control was that it comes in injections. Besides that, he worried about "selective control" (that is, only taking out certain families), which I thought a funny thing to worry about in elephants. The interviewee also didn't think it was good to make it a big show and allow hunters to kill them. So they really didn't seem too sure how these elephants were to be killed, but there are too many in Africa and it's affecting the ecologic balance.
 
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Picture of arnie
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Is it 'fizzy drink' that you find hilarious? That's a fairly common phrase used over here to describe soda, cola, pop, or whatever you call it in your neck of the woods. In short, it refers to any carbonated non-alcoholic drink. Wink


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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In short, it refers to any carbonated non-alcoholic drink. Wink

Budweiser, for example :-)


Richard English
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Yes, it's the "fizzy drink" that I thought hilarious. No offense to my dear friends in England, but it sounds like something a 2-year-old would call it. WinkI am sure we have phrases that sound like that to you.
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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What do you think of fizzy drinks after downing a couple of fuzzy navels? Razz
 
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I'm sure fizzy is better than fuzzy when it comes to drinks.


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Just one of many differences.

What we call fizzy drinks (or more commonly soft drinks) you call sodas.

To us soda (the drink) is carbonated water used by ignoramuses to ruin fine whisky.


Richard English
 
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Picture of BobHale
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Originally posted by Richard English:

What we call fizzy drinks (or more commonly soft drinks) you call sodas.



More commonly in the South. Up here in the uncivilised (Wink) wilderness of the Midlands and further in the barbarian North, "fizzy drinks" is heard far more commonly than "soft drinks".
 
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Although this is not a reply to a posted comment, it does seem to me to have to do with the general subject. Therefore I am posting it here in the hopes that it will make Americans see that, in the words of a friend, Brits are "still the Western world's most inventively idiosyncratic people". Hope you enjoy these.

Humorous personal ads from England

Here's a selection of the funniest, beginning with the one which inspired the book's title:

'They call me naughty Lola. Run-of-the-mill beardy physicist (M, 46).'

'I've divorced better men than you. And worn more expensive shoes than these. So don't think placing this ad is the biggest comedown I've ever had to make. Sensitive F, 34.'

'List your ten favourite albums... I just want to know if there's anything worth keeping when we finally break up. Practical, forward thinking man, 35.'

'Employed in publishing? Me too. Stay the hell away. Man on the inside seeks woman on the outside who likes milling around hospitals guessing the illnesses of out-patients. 30-35. Leeds.'

'I like my women the way I like my kebab. Found by surprise after a drunken night out and covered in too much tahini. Before long I'll have discarded you on the pavement of life, but until then you're the perfect complement to a perfect evening. Man, 32, rarely produces winning metaphors.'

'My ideal woman is a man. Sorry, mother.'

'Your buying me dinner doesn't mean I'll have sex with you. I probably will have sex with you, though. Honesty not an issue with opportunistic male, 38.'

'Not everyone appearing in this column is a deranged cross-dressing sociopath. Let me know if you find one and I'll strangle him with my bra. Man, 56.'

'Are you Kate Bush? Write to obsessive man (36). Note, people who aren't Kate Bush need not respond.'

'Stroganoff. Boysenberry. Frangipani. Words with their origins in people's names. If your name has produced its own entry in the OED then I'll make love to you. If it hasn't, I probably will anyway, but I'll only want you for your body. Man of too few distractions, 32.'

'Ploughing the loneliest furrow. Nineteen personal ads and counting. Only one reply. It was my mother telling me not to forget the bread on my way home from B&Q. Man, 51.'

'Mature gentleman, 62, aged well, noble grey looks, fit and active, sound mind and unfazed by the fickle demands of modern society seeks...damn it, I have to pee again.'

'Slut in the kitchen, chef in the bedroom. Woman with mixed priorities (37) seeks man who can toss a good salad.'

'Bald, short, fat and ugly male, 53, seeks short-sighted woman with tremendous sexual appetite.'

'Romance is dead. So is my mother. Man, 42, inherited wealth.'
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Up here in the uncivilised () wilderness of the Midlands and further in the barbarian North, "fizzy drinks" is heard far more commonly than "soft drinks".

We're uncivilized with you, Bob. We call them "soft drinks" in Illinois, too.

Mark, those are hilarious! Big Grin Are they real? I'll take the cutie who's into the OED. Wink I bet the slut in the kitchen and chef in the bedroom will get lots of calls!
 
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We call non-alcoholic, carbonated beverages "soft drinks" in Cincinnati, but in Upstate New York, and here in Southeast Pennsylvania, we call them "sodas." I was surprised when I ordered "lemonade" in the UK, to be served a lemon-lime fizzy drink. Here, lemonade is a mixture of lemon juice, sugar and water.

Wordmatic
 
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Regarding the UK/USA confusion as to what lemondade is, you might be interested to know that the Japanese call "fizzy lemon drinks" (e.g. 7-up, Sprite) "ramune" (pron. rah-moo-NAY)
- their way of saying "lemonade" (since the "l" sound is problematic for them).
 
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Picture of Caterwauller
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I love those personals. I wonder what we would all write for personal ads if we suddenly found ourselves single . . .


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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While single - and I was for nineteen years - my most effective headline was, "Understand men? Want one anyway?"
 
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Picture of BobHale
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quote:
Originally posted by Caterwauller:
I love those personals. I wonder what we would all write for personal ads if we suddenly found ourselves single . . .

May I say what a thoroughly tactless remark that is? There are some of us who would like to be in a position where suddenly finding ourselves single was actually a possibility. I suddenly found myself single at age zero and have never managed to do anything about it.

Must dash. I have a pillow to cry into.

Wink
 
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Oh dear, I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings, dear Bob, and anyone else. I said the "suddenly single" thing so as not to offend my own spouse and those who might think it inappropriate for a married woman to suggest writing personal ads. I'm hoping, Bob, that your winky face means you were teasing me, but if I did hurt you, please forgive me. I probably should buy you a beer while we're in Chi-town, eh? Just to make things up?


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Picture of BobHale
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Life, the Universe and Everything hurts me. I make Marvin the Paranoid Android look like the Laughing Policeman. My favourite joke is from the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

It goes something like this (I'm paraphrasing from memory)

First being: Why is life like hanging upside down with your head in a bucket of dingos' kidneys?

Second being: I don't know, why is life like hanging upside down with your head in a bucket of dingos' kidneys?

First being: I don't know either. Wretched, isn't it?
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Big Grin

So, Bob, what would your personal ad say?
 
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Picture of Caterwauller
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Ahh - quoting the great literature. I, too, am a great fan of Doug Adams. I used to use his "Lessons in Flying" as an audition reading. It makes a great "light monologue" when auditioning for a comedic role.

From memory:
"There is an art, or rather, a knack to flying. The knack lies in knowing how to throw yourself at the ground . . . and miss."

I forget the rest, though, after 20 years. Sigh.


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Picture of Caterwauller
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quote:
So, Bob, what would your personal ad say?

Maybe it would be more fun to write personal ads for one another?


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Picture of Kalleh
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Alright...here goes. Guess who it's about:

"This Bud's for you"...NOT! Wink
 
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Here's a Britishism that the American press is having fun with (even though the context is sad):

When a British landlord heard that his tenant was arrested in the most recent terrorist attack in London, he said he was "gobsmacked!" Now, that's a word we wouldn't use.
 
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Picture of Richard English
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When a British landlord heard that his tenant was arrested in the most recent terrorist attack in London, he said he was "gobsmacked!" Now, that's a word we wouldn't use.

I don't know when this expression gained favour - it's not all that old.

I suspect it came from an analogy with the feeling of shock and horror that one would have if one were to be smacked (that is, punched) in the gob (that is, mouth).


Richard English
 
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Picture of arnie
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We've mentioned gobsmacked several times here, the most recent being in May by zmj.


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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Do they have Dippin' Dots in the UK?
 
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Picture of Richard English
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Do they have Dippin' Dots in the UK?

I have never seen them - but I am not a great ice-cream connoisseur.


Richard English
 
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Do they have chiffchaffs in England? I am reading Atonement by Ian McEwan, and there was a reference to this bird. I loved the word!
 
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Oh yes. We have them.


Richard English
 
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