Saturday, June 09, 2007

American as a second language

So there is a lovely English fellow at work who has lived in Buenos Aires (the Paris of South America!) and other exotic places, but he apparently isn't too familiar with Americanisms.

In a message, I referred to something "coming down the pike."

And he replied, "Don't you mean pipe, as in pipeline? I think of pike, and I think of fish."

"No, I meant coming down the pike, as in turnpike, which is a road."

"Oh, must be an American thing."

Hmm, actually no. This says the word has its origins in the 15th century. Americans probably shortened it much much later, which may be why the English don't want to claim it anymore. Some of them still think this is a pike.

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Blogger oldest kid said...

Is that fish in the picture really a pike? It's huge!

8:59 PM  

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