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Thursday, September 08, 2005

English Talk

Somehow I just feel like bringing this issue to the attention. It's gonna be English, a language concern. I have noticed that people here in Malaysia have some serious problems with the language they're using. It all started with people trying to be cool, or trying to pick up some slang they thought which would be cool to use it in their daily conversation.

Here is a first to many mis-slang (that's what I name it here, misuse of slang) -- Damn. The word 'damn' is pretty much misused here. It is understandable where the slang was picked from. Thanks to heavy American movie shown in the cinemas, Malaysians, namely pennisular here started using Damn all over the place.

Firstly, the word damn is to be used to emphasis how bad the situation one is in. This is how it is meant to be used. e.g. "Damn, this ain't good. We ought to do something!" or "Damn! How could I missed that shot? I was wide open.." or this may sound bit offensive, but to God I swear, I have no disrespect to You, I just want to bring a valid example up. "God damn it!" (obviously, it's swearing, and show of disappointment, and dissatisfaction.)

Now, the damn in very Malaysian way:

"I am damn hungry.."
"That show is so damn nice.."
"Ooooh.. Brad Pitt is so damn cute.."
"Damn nice-lah, this fella.."

In the sentence, you condemn the object in the conversation anyhow you look at it. It just doesn't sound nice. Damn isn't the right word for stressing or emphasizing one situation. It is just wrong, and it does not sound nice at all! Never!

If you search "Damn" in Dictionary.com, you will get this in as the return of result:
As verb (verb means action, for those who don't know):

  • To pronounce an adverse judgment upon. See Synonyms at condemn.

  • To bring about the failure of; ruin.

  • To condemn as harmful, illegal, or immoral: a cleric who damned gambling and strong drink.

  • To condemn to everlasting punishment or a similar fate; doom.

  • To swear at.


  • As an adjective (to describe a noun: a noun means an object):

  • to express dissatisfaction or annoyance


  • So, before you start to damn at anything, think twice before you start using the word damn. Do NOT ever condemn the meaning of damn.

    Practice good English daily! Even you are at a chat, or typing text messages! Make it a habit. Cheers!

    3 comments:

    Interactivi-T said...

    Dude, I will join your parade for good English use in Malaysia. 'Sedative' is not what you call a cough medicine. If you are unsure of what you are using, the rule of thumb is 'do not use it'.

    Chou Jie Yong(Ronan) said...

    for the 'damn' thing, i don think it's a malaysian thing.

    it's should be originating from those americans instead.

    for eg.
    "This is f*cking good!"

    which would be censored, and thus was changed to

    "This is damn good!"

    Just my two cents. :)

    a2blog said...

    True. I didn't say that the damn word is originiated from Malaysia. It's an American slang, just that the way Malaysians use it, is so wrong. Well, to be exact, overused it. It spoils the flow.

    The usage for damn and fucking are similar, they're both not the right word to practice with.

    Instead of saying, "damn good" or "fucking good", why can't we just say it nicely this way - "very good"? isn't that better?

    what i had highlighted here is the usage by Malaysians, also stress on the way they emphasize it. Most just got it so wrong.

    Thanks for the comment! ^_^ glad that you could drop by. All materials published in this blog are merely an amatuer reflection of my thoughts and experience.

    Cheers!