Questions about stuff

A few questions came up last night that I thought I’d share. One was why is a church erected and a building built? The other was how many times does one pee during the average lifetime? Deep thoughts indeed. I also wondered why it is that our language doesn’t cover emotions very well. We speak about sadness and happiness and blah blah blah, but there aren’t words for the more abstract, yet commonly felt emotions, such as

the happiness or release felt when someone sick passes away?

or

the smell of bread or that first sip of coffee?

or

being able to go back to sleep on a Saturday after forgetting to turn of the work-week alarm

. I’m just wondering. I know it’s a silly thought compared to how many times one urinates. There aren’t words to really describe actual emotions and I know they exist in other languages. I wish I knew it all, or at the very least, could know the differences. But tell me, was the English language designed by cold-hearted, unfeeling bastards or what?

10 Comments

  1. A GREAT book you need to read about this is by Bill Bryson. I freakin’ love that guy’s books…this one is more dry, but it does explain languages in a some-what interesting fashion.

    You have the question about urination, I have always wondered, “If you stacked up all the food you ate so far in your lifetime, what would that look like?”

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  2. And if I could remember the name of that book, I’d tell ya, but frankly, I can’t.

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  3. Ah, Amazon always helps out. It’s called “The Mother Tounge” by Bill Bryson.

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  4. I believe churches are “erected” because in the old days, in Europe churches were built as the heart of a community, litterally in the center, overseeing and dominating the town. The church was also often the first authority in those towns and cities.

    The whole community’s social life always centered around the church and the marketplace in front of it. “Erected” also visualizes the upward movement of a tower towards the heavens. But then I have also heard of Skyscrapers being erected, honestly.

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  5. That is true. I have heard that, come to think of it. Thanks, arjen. :]

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  6. Another question that came up:

    “When doing graphic design projects, do designers usually prefer justified or unjustified text blocks? ”

    Rock The Vote. :-)
    (not my question :-)))

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  7. start speaking german, they have special words for all sorts of weird crap, lustmord, schadenfreude, etc. etc…

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  8. I once knew a girl who would shriek if you said that you loved her. “People always say love when they don’t mean it! ‘I love that blouse!’ ‘I love bean dip!’ ‘I love you!’ Great, so now I’m bean dip?!?”

    She was right. The word (as an example) has lost its meaning. What has happened to “adore”, “admire”, “appreciate”, and dozens of other words starting with letters other than “A” that express different but similar ideas? They seem to have fallen into disuse and been subsumed into the broader and more meaningless word, “love”.

    Think of that next time you “love” or “hate” something. Even when you “don’t like” something when you mean that you “dislike” it (there is a difference).

    English has had more differences but it is losing them. In a hundred years: “Grunt, snort, grunt-grunt snort dot-com snort-snort fbllt.”

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