Frazz by Jef Mallett for May 14, 2016


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  1. I yam who i yam
    Kind&Kinder  over 3 years ago

    Just try it in French, and you’ll have the Academie on your back. English is a highly idiomatic language. Most native speakers understand what you’re saying. Important to realize, the first rule of direct communication is to speak simply and clearly to the purpose without resorting to mind games. That’s for the theater, or if you really have nothing of value to say. You can even speak or write in fragments if you wish, a parallel to the workings of your demented little brain. In this strip, Frazz is just a puzzled enabler. I love the complexity (and maybe the darkness) of Mallett’s mind!

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  2. I yam who i yam
    Kind&Kinder  over 3 years ago

    Those are among the reasons we call it a highly idiomatic language. It is one of the hardest to learn for a non-native speaker, but a native usually understands the many inflections words take in English. We often treat informal English as though it were formal, somewhat a reflection of the American spirit which doesn’t like to be saddled or constrained. There are many volumes written on this subject. I’ll stop now.

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  3. Barry wom download
    Barrington Womble  over 3 years ago

    That wouldn’t make sense in any language.

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  4. 00712 whiteheron
    whiteheron  over 3 years ago

    I don’t know why some people say that American is hard to learn. I had very little trouble with it, and that was early in the process.: )

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  5. Chanter
    Brian Fink  over 3 years ago

    “The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.”

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  6. Gocomic avatar
    sanderling75  over 3 years ago

    Jef loves word play and is having more fun with it as he practices. Strange mind, though.

    The ‘street’ or informal idiom of any language is difficult, unless one is immersed in the culture for a time. Mastery then depends on individual ability to absorb and use it correctly. ‘Formal’ language – rules, mechanics, word order – are more straightforward and easier for many. All of them, including the Pacific Rim groups, can be learned via text (fair), audio (better), or tutor versed in both levels (Best). But that will not lead to mastery or ease of use in the country of origin without immersion.

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  7. Hydrangeas
    nanczarny  over 3 years ago

    This is not hard- purposely mean to do something on purpose, intentionally. You blow up the pool toy on purpose.

    Purposefully means to do something with determination. It takes determination to fully inflate the pool toy.

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  8. Note
    Slowly, he turned...  over 3 years ago

    I think we can purposely/purposefully say that this is a tempest in a teacup!

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  9. Yakko
    TheMightyGorga  over 3 years ago

    Is someone taking lessons from Stephan Pastis?

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  10. Image
    magicwalnut Premium Member over 3 years ago

    actually, it made perfect sense. What a lovely explanation!

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  11. Missing large
    hippogriff  over 3 years ago

    German defines the concept in as few words as possible, knocks out the spaces, and scrunches the fragments back together – sometimes a ridiculously long word, but it works. French turns it pover to l’Academie Française, who will study it for a decade or so, and come up with a word which now must be used in legal documents. English looks around for a language that already has such a word, steals it, and claims it is English. The main problem with this system is that the original spelling is kept, making it either difficult to spell or to pronounce, so either or both are mangeled. Other languages use combinations.

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  12. Linkingbookchannelwood
    toahero  over 3 years ago

    English doesn’t borrow from other languages, English mugs other languages in dark alleyways and goes through their pockets for loose grammar

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  13. White tiger swimming
    cabalonrye  over 3 years ago

    In fact I found English very easy to learn… as long as it was very basic English. Way fewer rules than French, fewer tenses (we have 19 tenses thought we use only half of them more or less). A breeze.

    It’s when you dig in further that you realise how complex, difficult, and complicated English is. It isn’t even the vocabulary (way more words than in French but all you have to do is learn them) but the thousands of exceptions to the rules, the hidden meaning if you change just one small word (of, in etc…) the flexibility of the structure of a sentence and how it will change the meaning.

    French is hard to learn because you need the rules first, and there’s plenty of them. If you use words without using the rules the French won’t understand you. But once you’ve learned them it’s easy.

    English is way sneakier. Basic English is easy, so few rules, just line up the words and you can communicate. So you feel ready for a higher level of communication… and then you use the wrong preposition. :)

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  14. White rose mod
    tomielm Premium Member over 3 years ago

    Love Mallett’s mnemonic tongue twister in the center panel! Nice, Jef!

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  15. Missing large
    nhinkle  over 3 years ago

    right up there with historic and historical

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  16. Missing large
    CamiSu Premium Member over 3 years ago

    Don’t think we will miss Gon Fshn, or his racism…

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  17. Missing large
    K M  over 3 years ago

    Actually, I thought it made perfect sense, structurally at least. Now: Practical? That’s a whole nother thought.

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  18. Nick danger small
    cmforzetting  over 3 years ago

    English is difficult to learn because it is the result of a worldwide empire borrowing words from other languages and often keeping their original spellings, even though they would not have been spelled that way had they originated in England and made according to the normal spelling rules of English. ‘Knight’, for instance, comes from the German word ‘kneggit’. We’re stuck with it unless a grand reorganization of phonetic-based spelling were to take place, and even then it would result in the elimination of a lot of homonyms (‘to’, ‘too’, ‘two’, for instance – which one do we keep?)

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  19. Captain klutz
    spikelovesmusic  over 3 years ago

    Puns worthy of Pearls Before Swine’s Stephan Pastis. And why not? They take the time out of their busy schedules to occasionally rib each other.

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