When we visited the gardens in February, we arrived too late in the day to climb to the top of the Chinese pagoda or even set foot in the Japanese Gardens. This time, we arrived earlier.
See below for 29 photos. My favorite is the spiral one pointing up towards the top of the inside of the pagoda.
Continue reading Chinese and Japanese Gardens
This package of Japanese Kyuri from Malaysia says:
Rich in nutrients, Cucumber are excellent in salads, sandwiches, stir-fry and sushi.
Here, the fact that the singular is being treated like a plural makes it sound as if cucumbers are exotic animals like bison or buffalo.
Recently, though I don’t have a photo, I saw a sign in front of some model planes (in the Tin Tin shop strangely located on Pagoda St in Chinatown) that was advertising “aircrafts for sale”. Ack. No.
For a variety of historical reasons, English has many kinds of nouns that are annoyingly difficult to pluralize, and Wikipedia helpfully lists them.
Interestingly, the cucumber package shows ‘salads’, ‘sandwiches’, ‘stir-fry’, and ‘sushi’ all in the correct form, even though ‘salad’ requires an ‘s’, ‘sandwich’ requires ‘es’, and ‘stir-fry’ and ‘sushi’ are uncountable.
Why, then, was it so hard to give ‘cucumber’ its plural ‘s’?
And why is it capitalized?!
My husband and I returned to Gardens by the Bay to go up on the Skyway.
Below are 18 photos from our visit.
Continue reading Visit to Gardens by the Bay Supertrees and OCBC Skyway
When my husband took me to a squinchy Japanese restaurant that had high chairs at a bar-style counter, the server laconically instructed me to put my bag “downstairs”, which meant “on the shelf under the seat of the chair”.
I have heard English teachers eager to hold students accountable for their spoken language deride this common Singlish use of “downstairs”, but it’s wonderful (and typical) in its succinctness.
If you use the preposition “under”, you have to include a noun for the preposition to be, well, positioned in front of. If you use the adverb “downstairs”, you’re just saying something needs to go below something else, and letting context do the work of indicating what the something else is.
Chinese has a phrase approximately meaning “down side” which can be used the way the server was using “downstairs” to adverbially indicate “under something”. It also has phrases meaning “up side”, “behind side”, “opposite side”, etc., and you can say “located opposite side” without needing to say “located opposite the hotel”, for example, the way we can say in English that “the receipt is in the bag” or just “the receipt is inside”.
I get the sense that Chinese relies on context more than English, or at least relies on context in ways that English doesn’t, since a large proportion communication in any language is always shared context.
Singapore is tidy.
Most of the time I take the tidiness for granted, though I immediately remember whenever I go just about anywhere else.
Still, once in a while, something in Singapore astonishes me. This temporary footpath diversion on Clementi Road is a prime example.
Continue reading Temporary footpath diversion
My husband and I visited the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome at Gardens by the Bay.
Below are 77 of the 246 photos I took.
Continue reading Visit to Gardens by the Bay
This sign in the Kent Vale lift says:
For children between 6 to 16 years
When you have two numbers, you need “between… and”, or “from… to” not “between… to”.
For children from 6 to 16 years old
For children between 6 and 16 years old
I’ve seen this problem before.
This sign in the lift at Kent Vale says
Pre-loved Items Collection
Which sounds weird to me because I would have said
Pre-loved Item Collection
even though obviously they will be collecting more than one.
It’s an example of a tendency to pluralize nouns being used as adjectives, which I’ve posted about already, twice.
This advertisement (which was designed to be hung on a horizontal pole on a bus or a train) says:
West My Golden Ticket?
The idea for this jokey name is that the word “west” in Singlish has the exact same three sounds as the word “where’s” in Singlish.
Yep. They’re both pronounced “wes”.
Below is some explanation of what the advertisement wants you to do (spend money, duh) and how the math works.
Continue reading Spot the homophone (plus a lesson in contest statistics)
Here he is again, in the basement at OG at Somerset.
Shop theft is a crime