Let's Speak English

| Contents | Previous Page | Next Page |

- Page 9 -


Good evening, everybody. Last week I tried to improve your English pronunciation. This evenmg I want to add to your English vocabulary.

But before I give you some new English words, I must remove some of those that claim to be English but aren't. They're deceiving you and you must turn them out at once.

What about GAZOZ? You know what I mean, that cold; sweet and fizzy drink that's sold in Tel Aviv in the summer. It gives a livelihood to the hundreds of people who sell it and bad digestions to the thousands who drink it. The only way to avoid a bad digestion in Tel Aviv is to sell gazoz; then you don't have to drink it. Have you ever seen a gazoz seller drinking his own gazoz? I haven't! .

Now GAZOZ is not an English word. It's a Palestinian corruption of the French words 'eau gazeuse' - or gassy water. In England, we don't say GAZOZ. If you ask for GAZOZ when you dine with the King at Buckingham Palace no-one'd know what you meant. The English name is MINERAL WATER or even MINERALS. But I'm afraid GAZOZ is already part of Palestinian English and nothing that you and I can do· or say will get rid of it.

So let's pass on to PROJECTOR. Now PROJECTOR is a German word which, tn English, means search-light. Search-lights are used in war time against enemy aircraft and in Palestine in peace time to show people the way, when they want to visit Jewish villages at night. So as long as search-lights are necessary, either in peace or war, I hope that you'll call them search-lights and not PROJECTORS.

While we're talking about military things, I must warn you against using the purely military word BARRACKS when you really mean peaceful wooden HUTS. The word BARRACK, meaning a wooden HUT, has immigrated into Palestine from Germany. But it never had a proper immigration certificate and it's here Illegally. In English, BARRACKS are reserved entirely for soldiers and are usually of stone or brick and not of wood. So next time, when you want to refer to any small wooden building, call it a HUT and you'll be talking proper English.

In England we've many workmen of different kinds. Some are called FITTERS, others are called PLUMBERS. FITTERS are mechanics who are expert in fitting together machines. PLUMBERS are men who deal with pipes and domestic sanitation. But in Palestine a FITTER is called a MONTEUR, which is a French word - while a PLUMBER is called an INSTALLATOR which is a German word. But an English FITTER and an English PLUMBER are just as good as a French MONTEUR and a German INSTALLATOR. So I hope you'll remember to call for a FITTER next time your refrigerator wants taking to pieces and for a PLUMBER when your kitchen sink needs attention. If no one understands

  Photo: Let's Speak English  page 9

| Contents | Previous Page | Next Page |