Wednesday, August 8, 2012

language craziness and what the heat's really doing to us all

One more reason learning a new language is an adventure:

This past weekend I was at a wedding and was one of the greeters/lead-you-to-your-seat-ers at the reception. After spending half the day in heels, my feet were hurting, so before anyone really got there, I took my shoes off. And once they did get there, I kept doing what I was doing without putting my shoes on. My gensec rebuked me later, barefooted pagan that I am, and made me go put them back on. And so I was telling this story to a(n American) friend last night over skype and got to the part about my gensec coming up to me and this is what came out of my mouth:

"Yeah, and then he came up to me and rebuked me for running around naked."

NOT SURE WHERE THAT CAME FROM. Barefoot! Not naked! Really red Sarawr.

There is a logical explanation--one I'm not fully convinced of--but there's this: in Romanian, for barefoot, you say picoarele goale. Bare feet, naked feet. If you were naked, you'd say gol--the plural feminine then is goale. (If anyone else wants to geek out with me about etymology here, feel free--although apparently our word goal comes from Middle English... and the sense of empty, like an empty goal, like a place you put a ball has nothing to do with bare/empty... kind of a stretch I guess but it's what my brain put together and made a lot of sense until I looked it up just now.)

The only thing that leaves me unconvinced is that when I'm talking about being barefoot in Romanian, I don't think 'being naked footed' or anything--I think not having shoes or socks on. I expect this is a good thing because it means I'm not translating in my head.

However that still leaves us with no explanation for why I said naked. Theories abound, some about American expressions, others more speculative. Powers of analysis. We'll get there.

But let's be real, y'all. It's hot here. And I have a deep love for pantslessness (and descriptivism, zing!). And my poor roommate and I are surviving the 100 degree days and 85 degree nights and no AC or fan (which is totally fine except that the apartment is not built for keeping cool), so this is clearly about a) brain addled from the heat and b) brain's suggested solution to relieve heat and prevent addling.

Well then. Suggestion noted. Will take into consideration.


  1. :D I hear you about the heat ... we're baking on this side too (102 this past Monday)! My friends in Atlanta tell me it's hot there too, but I always remind them that they do have a/c at home, in their cars, and at their jobs. ;)

    Hope it cools off for you soon!

  2. heyo! glad to hear you're stayin' alive too :) all these cod portocalius and all that. it finally broke here--it's been storming for the last couple of hours. hopefully it'll do that and cool off there too :)

  3. It has cooled off here, but we got no rain. I think we're supposed to get some tomorrow, and then on Sunday, we should be around 73 for a high! I guess we will see how long that lasts. ;)