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pacomartin
pacomartin
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May 28th, 2011 at 11:04:45 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

The related English word is "stationary," as in "not currently in motion."



The signs that say "no parking" have now been replaced by "no standing" near airports and street corners. Either that is because of the large number of Spanish speaking people in the USA, or it is because so many people argued that as long as they were sitting in the car they weren't "parked".

The word in English originally meant a pen for animals. It became a place to put military vehicles in the late 17th century, and only acquired the meaning of placing a civilian carriage in a certain spot in the 19th century (before gasoline powered vehicles).

My dictionary says that "parquear" is the term most often used in Columbia.

Probably for the last 60 years, "going parking" has been English slang for making out in a car, which is often applied to people who are too young to have apartments.



A standard horror story since WWII is the young couple who are "parking" when they are terrorized by the man with hook for a hand.


I don't know if there is an equivalent idiom in Mexico.
Nareed
Nareed
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May 28th, 2011 at 11:32:40 AM permalink
Quote: pacomartin

My dictionary says that "parquear" is the term most often used in Columbia.



I normally don't make fun of typos because I commit plenty on my own. But this one keeps coming up. So I'll ask: Columbia the university, or Washington, District of Columbia?

ColOmbia, now, is a country in South America. Remember than Columbus in Spanish is known as Colón.

Quote:

I don't know if there is an equivalent idiom in Mexico.



Not that I know of.
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pacomartin
pacomartin
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May 28th, 2011 at 11:57:12 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

I normally don't make fun of typos because I commit plenty on my own. But this one keeps coming up. So I'll ask: Columbia the university, or Washington, District of Columbia? Colombia, now, is a country in South America. Remember than Columbus in Spanish is known as Colón.



I forget that there is a different spelling.

John Cabot, who sailed under funding by Henry VIII, was the original celebrated discoverer of British North America. For some reason, Christopher Columbus became very popular in pre-revolution America despite never setting foot in North America. He may have become popular simply because the new nation needed heroes that were not associated with Britain. In particular Benjamin Franklin was big on naming the new country Columbia (hence the District of Columbia). Ben hated the name USA and considered it very bureaucratic.

In 1828, Washington Irving wrote "The Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus" which was hugely popular. He invented the story that Columbus convinced Europeans of his time that the Earth is not flat. This idea seems to have come purely from Washington Irving's imagination. Columbus was so popular that Irving could not bring himself to admit that Columbus made his voyage against all known logic, and was actually one of the luckiest men in history. So he came up with the story that indicated that most of the monarch's advisors were ignorant and Columbus was smarter than all of them.
Nareed
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May 28th, 2011 at 12:27:11 PM permalink
Quote: pacomartin

Columbus was so popular that Irving could not bring himself to admit that Columbus made his voyage against all known logic, and was actually one of the luckiest men in history. So he came up with the story that indicated that most of the monarch's advisors were ignorant and Columbus was smarter than all of them.



Indeed. Columbus' big idea was that the Earth was smaller than believed, therefore crossing the Atlantic ought to get you from Europe to Asia. He was lucky there was a whole continent in between, otherwise his expedition would likely have starved to death proving Columbus wrong.

But then the real story seems incredible, too. Eratosthenes measured the Earth's circumference over 1,500 years before Columbus and with uncanny accuracy. His measurement was off from the most accurate done two millennia later by about 2%, far from what Columbus thought.
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pacomartin
pacomartin
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May 28th, 2011 at 2:15:13 PM permalink
Quote: Nareed

But then the real story seems incredible, too. Eratosthenes measured the Earth's circumference over 1,500 years before Columbus and with uncanny accuracy. His measurement was off from the most accurate done two millennia later by about 2%, far from what Columbus thought.



Hence, the "luckiest idiot" theory. However, unknown to Eratosthenes was precisely how far the continents stretched around the earth.

However, since people in the middle ages had made the journey to the East by land, most people generally thought that the Eurasian continent stretched half way around the world. Even that was generous since Tokyo is at 140 degrees east, and the Canary islands is 15 degrees west.

Toscanelli's completely erroneous map had a large influence on Colombus. It showed a nice big island of Antilia (or Antillia) with a convenient stopping place. He had Japan (Zipango) roughly at the same longitude as Veracruz Mexico or Houston Texas. So not only did Colombus have the diameter of the Earth wrong, he was under the delusion that Japan was roughly 140 degrees further East., and that it was a tropical island.

It is doubtful that Colombus would have made it as far as Veracruz in the small ships without stopping for water and food. He was counting on landing at the legendary island.


Quote: Extract of the First Letter of Paolo Toscanelli to Columbus


"The said voyage is not only possible, but it is true, and certain to be honourable and to yield incalculable profit, and very great fame among all Christians. But you cannot know this perfectly save through experience and practice, as I have had in the form of the most copious and good and true information from distinguished men of great learning who have come from the said parts, here in the court of Rome, and from others being merchants who have had business for a long time in those parts, men of high authority."

Nareed
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May 29th, 2011 at 5:38:05 AM permalink
Fecha: 29 de Mayo
Palabra del día: Hot Cakes


It is my position that once a word, phrase or term in one language is adopted in common, every day use in another, then it becomes part of the latter language. Ergo "hot cakes" is a word in Spanish, at least in Mexico.

It means pancakes. I find example superfluous.

The term is used in all brands of pancake flour, some brands of maple syrup substitute (which is actually maple-flavored corn syrup), and in every restaurant offering pancakes I've ever been to, except for the local ihop.
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Doc
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May 29th, 2011 at 9:09:22 AM permalink
All riiiiight! If you come up with enough words like this, I might actually learn a little bit of "Spanish". One of the few words I remember from my French lessons many years ago is "le parking", meaning a spot in los estacionamiento.
pacomartin
pacomartin
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May 29th, 2011 at 9:48:48 AM permalink
Quote: Doc

All riiiiight! If you come up with enough words like this, I might actually learn a little bit of "Spanish". One of the few words I remember from my French lessons many years ago is "le parking", meaning a spot in los estacionamiento.



There is a "le parking" bar in montreal, but I don't think it means what it used to in your French class
Nareed
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May 30th, 2011 at 6:54:54 AM permalink
Fecha: 30 de Mayo
Palabra del día: Despensa


Most dictionaries will translate this word as pantry or larder, which is entirely correct. As such you can say "Pon la mostaza en la despensa" "Put the mustard in the pantry."

However, in Mexico, and perhaps elsewhere, it has an additional meaning: a package, bag or basket of non-perishable food products. For exmaple, various government agencies provide despensas to people who "need" help feeding themselves and their families. These typically include items like corn flour for tortillas, sugar, beans, lentils, rice, pasta, sardines (beats me, too), tuna, soy protein, milk and cooking oil among others. It's a huge business.

Around Christmas grocery stores sell despensas either in boxes or baskets. they come in all types from "basic" to "luxury." The latter tend to be called "canastas" (baskets), but not always. An example fo the latter would include inside things like wine, cookies, some canned sea food, cured ham, nuts, etc. These are commonly given as gifts to employees, business associates, clients, etc. around that time.

I think I'm done now.

[edited to change the date]
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pacomartin
pacomartin
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May 30th, 2011 at 7:50:28 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

Fecha: 29 de Mayo
Palabra del día: Despensa



Como se dice vales de despensa en ingles?

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