21 December 2008

What do you mean?

There are times when I wish we have only one language in this world… because it annoys me when people go around telling you, do not use certain words for they mean something else in other language.


I grow up with more than one language around me. Every time I get out of the house, it is not 100% I will get to hear the language that I will understand all the time. I grow up with more than one race, one tradition, one thinking and I do not find that annoying…

What annoyed me is when people tell me not to use certain words when speaking in one language. Just because those words meant something else in other languages… So here is the problem… Which languages are trying to speak?

Chicken is Ayam in Malay. In Chinese it is pronounce as Ji. In Sarawak Malay we called it Manoq. In other races, they will have their own way to call that same thing.

Also, the same word for that one thing may mean a different thing in other language. My cousins who are Kenyah does not like to use the word Manoq because it is not a good word in their language but they do not thing it is rude when we speak in the Sarawak Malay language. We know that it mean the chicken.

Thus, to avoid confusion, speak in proper language. If you speak Malay, speak proper Malay so as not toad confusion. Then you will not have wrong words usage and such. Unless you are able to converse very well in different languages and want to crack jokes, please stop pointing out the meaning of words in one language when you are talking in different language.

In Sanskrit, patik means dog. In Malay, patik mean me, in the royal Malay language. Does it mean you are referring to yourself as a dog when you are talking? I do not think so and if people had been very uncomfortable with that, they probably had change it a long time ago… We still use it because we know we are speaking Malay and it means me….

Trust me, if you take any word in your language and cross check with other language you have in this world, for sure one of the other meaning for that word will mean something bad. Relax, and just use one language when you talk. It is what you meant when you talk matter not the words you used. Do not add complication to our already complicated communication…

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