Sunday, 20 November 2016

Developing a civilisation calls for grit and spunk.

A group of students from China and Thailand are discussing the inventions and discoveries that have contributed the most to the development of civilisation and the quality of modern life. Among anaesthesia, refrigeration, the compass, etc., they include semen. 'Yes, semen has very big influence on civilisation,' they agree.

Chinese and Thai speakers have a strong tendency to place stress on the first syllable of a word and to simplify consonant clusters, so after the discussion I have to drill:

SEmen Oo

ceMENT oO

It makes a difference, folks.

4 comments:

Paul Brownsey said...

CEEment is the pronunciation the song Buttons and Bows from the film The Paleface:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1e7CIMvD74

Steve B said...

I still heard it (for a split second) as 'semen'.

Paul Brownsey said...

When I was a philosophy lecturer at Glasgow Uni I once came across the student claim that a certain argument was "fellatious".

I so wanted to write in the margin, "You mean he cocked up the argument?" but didn't quite dare to.

Steve B said...

:) !

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