Friday, July 05, 2013


This is an old joke about the English language:


The European Commission has just announced an agreement whereby English will be the official language of the EC, rather than German, which was the other possibility. As part of the negotiations, Her Majesty's government conceded that English spelling had some room for improvement and has accepted a five year phase in plan that would be known as "EuroEnglish".
In the first year, "s" will replace the soft "c". Sertainly, this will make the sivil servants jump for joy. The hard "c" will be dropped in favour of the "k". This should klear up konfusion and keyboards kan have 1 less letter.
There will be growing publik enthusiasm in the sekond year, when the troublesome "ph" will be replaced with "f". This will make words like "fotograf" 20% shorter. In the third year, publik akseptanse of the new spelling kan be expekted to reach the stage where more komplikated changes are possible.
Governments will enkorage the removal of double letters, which have always ben a deterent to akurate speling. Also, al wil agre that the horible mes of the silent "e" in the language is disgraseful, and they should go away.
By the 4th year, peopl wil be reseptiv to steps such as replasing "th" with "z" and "w" with "v". During ze fifz year, ze unesesary "o" kan be dropd from vords kontaining "ou" and similar changes vud of kors be aplid to ozer kombinations of leters. After zis fifz year, ve vil hav a realy sensibl riten styl.
Zer vil be no mor trubls or difikultis and evrivun vil find it ezi to understand each ozer.

English is a fun language to learn as a foreign language, because it's very easy to acquire some small skills in it.  It is, however, very hard to learn truly well after pupadom.  I should know as I have tried to do just that.

And yup, English is seldom written as it is spoken.