Mudcat Café message #3780923 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #159554   Message #3780923
Posted By: Tradsinger
24-Mar-16 - 05:52 PM
Thread Name: BS: You say tomato...
Subject: RE: BS: You say tomato...
The differences between American and British English have been amusing people for many decades. My favourite [NB spelling] Americanism is "This aircraft will be airborne momentarily" which can sound alarming to British ears. Unfortunately, the linguistic trade between the UK and the USA is mainly one-way, i.e. from West to East, and we over here have been absorbing 'Americanisms' for years to the extent that we no longer regard them as Americanisms.

I [a Brit] worked in the States for several months and had no trouble at all in communication. I was wrong-footed once in the office when I was asked to put a certain document in the 'bin' [US = tray, UK = wastebasket.] but apart from that, no probs.

The linguistics of English are very complex, with non-native business people developing a sort of business English lingua franca which they readily understand but where English native speakers can rock the boat with idioms that non-native speakers don't 'get'. What would a non-native speaker make of "Are you having me on?" for example.

Anyway, I say let's rejoice in our linguistic biodiversity and let the Brits continue to laugh at American English - and vice versa.