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第23课 SHOPPING

2006-07-29 10:17

  There are about 23 examples of Singlish features in the first version of Gary's story - too many to list here! See if you can find them all!

  Jane and Nora are shopping for an office party.

  Nora: I love shopping. And I love this new supermarket. It's fantastic. We can shop and chit chat.

  Jane: I think it's very cute the way people here say “chit chat,” but we usually just say “chat.”

  Nora: Then we will shop and chat. Oh, look! The meat is air frone.

  Jane: Is that some kind of special Singaporean cow?

  Nora: No. It is from Australia. Air Frone, so it is more expensive.

  Jane: Well, I've heard of Hereford and Airedale but never Air Frone.

  Nora: No, look at the label.

  Jane: Oh, air-flown! You mean imported. I see. Air-flown. I've never heard of that before either.

  Nora: Look at this sambal. Do you take spicy things?

  Jane: Spicy food? Yes, I like spicy food, but not too hot. I always take the seeds out of my chillies when I cook.

  Nora: You cook?

  Jane: Yes, I love to cook.

  Nora: I cook in the morning. I take breakfast every day.

  Jane: Where do you take it?

  Nora: At home.

  Jane: You mean to your home?

  Nora: Yes, sorry. Bad English.

  Jane: So where do you cook it?

  Nora: (confused) To my home?

  Jane: I see (she doesn't) Should we get some bottled water?

  Nora: No, we can use plain water.

  Jane: (understanding “plane” water) Won't that be expensive?

  Nora: No. We have the best water in the world in Singapore.

  Jane: So why do you want to have the water flown in? You call that “air flown”, don't you?

  Nora: Alamak! Not aeroplane water…… Plain water…… Water from the tap.

  Jane: Sorry.

  Later, at the check out.

  Nora: Have you taken your lunch yet?

  Narrator: A lot of confusion today. Firstly……

  Replay……

  Nora: Oh look. The meat is air frone.

  Jane: Is that some kind of special Singaporean cow?

  Nora: No. It is from Australia. Air Frone so it is more expensive.

  Narrator: Here we have two problems. One is that Nora says “air frone” instead of “air - flown”。 The “l” and “r” sounds are easily confused but can make a big difference to meaning. “Bleed” and “Breed”, “Fly” and “Fry”。 Also, “air-flown” is not a very common word in most countries. It is better to say “imported”。

  Another big problem Nora and Jane had was the use of the word “take.”

  Replay……

  Nora: I cook in the morning. I take breakfast every day.

  Jane: Where do you take it?

  Narrator: And again.

  Replay……

  Nora: Have you taken your lunch yet?

  Narrator: In good English we say, “I have breakfast every day.” “Have you had lunch?” When we say things like, “Where do you take your lunch?” it's like saying that you buy your lunch at one place and then take it somewhere else to eat. Very confusing.

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