Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) – Biting Off More Than I Can Chew (BOMTICC)?


Over the past few weeks I’ve become fascinated with a framework (if not an entire theory of language!) known as Systemic Functional Linguistics, BUT… has this fascination led to a situation in which I find myself up the metaphorical creek (which apparently you do in a suit?!) Cue the dramatic orchestral music! Continue reading


Sentence Shenanigans 1 – Sound Repetition


Languages are equal parts beautiful to crazy. I think that’s why I love to study them: you get to learn so much about a culture and a method of communication, but you also get to see the completely bizarre results of language evolution. Continue reading

-175- Menggonceng


Verb. From Indonesian.

“To have a free ride, usually on the back of a friends’ bike”


Quick (and I mean, very quick) research online would indicate that this can also be used to indicate any variety of object that is transported on the back of a bike while it is is use. I don’t know how accurate this is, so if any Indonesian speakers would be kind enough to clarify… =]

-152- Matkakuume


Noun. From Finnish.

“The weariness and worry felt before a journey or trip”


The literal translation of Matkakuume is “travel fever,” and I’m not entirely sure just how far it goes (is it just on certain types of transportation, such as a fear of flying, or an overall fear of travelling from one location to another?)

What I do know is that the Germans and Swedish have similar words for describing the same thing: Reisefieber and Resfeber respectively.

-136- Zamzama


Verb. From Arabic.

“To move around or drift in a relaxed style”

I’m not 100% sure of the validity of this word. I came across it in one of the books I’ve been referencing, but there’s not really much available online to help back this up. Zamzama appears in Urdu, but I cannot find an Arabic source to tell me if this word is used/exists in this manner.

Also, would ‘sauntering’ effectively be the same?

-117- Riman


Noun. From Arabic.

“The sound of a stone thrown at a boy”

Braden Stone Throw

I’ll admit, I’m perplexed by this one. From it’s source, I can find no other information but I can find that others have posted similar things. What’s even more perplexing is how riman is so specific as to be stating the natural gender of the object… is there another sound for girls, or is this not common practise?

-57- Mahj


Adjective. From Persian (again).

“Looking beautiful after recovering from an ailment of a disease”


The Persians seem to have a boat-load of words where we do not have a one-word equivalent. I wonder if it works the other way around? I shall put more research into this when I have the time!

Also, I’d like to add a caveat to the above photo. In no way do I advocate that Snooki (if that’s what it’s called?) ever had an illness, nor that ‘beautiful’ could be a way to describe her (as it is in the eye of the beholder).

Saying that, I think being on the cast of Jersey Shore is pretty much a terminal condition.