Do you ever wonder why we park a car in a "driveway" but drive on a "parkway"? Why do we have "toes", not "footfingers"? And why do we brush our teeth with a "toothbrush" and "toothpaste" instead of a "teethbrush" and "teethpaste"? Sometimes, it looks like English makes no sense! I understand your frustration, so in this lesson, I will make sense of the senseless and look at some vocabulary that can confuse English learners.
TAKE THE QUIZ: http://www.engvid.com/10-words-in-english-that-dont-make-sense/
Hello out there? Hello? It's me. Oh, hello, hello, hello. Ronnie. Ronnie here. This is a really fun lesson, kind of something that I live for every day. One of my... It's not a hobby. One thing that I think is cool, generally and for real, are words in English. Being an English teacher, teaching you English, I come across words that just don't make sense. If you think of them in a different language, maybe your language, and then you translate it into English, it... What? It just does not make sense. So, I've got only 10 of these for you today, and I could go on with a thousand, but we are limited in our video time. So, today, 10 words, 10 things in English that just don't make sense.
First one. You have probably learned that in English, if you have: "in" or "un" or "anti" or "un" or "dis" before a word, it means not. So, your brain looks at this and says: "inflammable", "flammable". Okay. So, maybe you know the word, maybe you're French, maybe you know "flammable" or you can decide that "flame" means fire. So, if you look at this word in your logical brain, "inflammable" and "flammable" must mean the opposite. "Inflammable" must mean that something cannot catch fire, while as "flammable" must mean logically that something can catch fire. Guess what? Not in English. "Inflammable" and "flammable" both mean the same thing. What? So, the reason is "inflammable", sometimes the preposition... Not the prepositions. The things before the words can make it to do with it. So, actually "inflammable" means in flames. Do you know that band, In Flames? So, the prefix of "in"-it's a prefix-you know means not, but in this case, it means with or in, together. Mind.
Next one, this is fun: "noses run". Okay. So, you have a nose, it runs. This means that some liquid, which is called "mucus" or "snot", comes out of your nose. So, we say: "My nose is running. Ah, my nose is running." But: "Your feet smell." Is this funny yet? So, noses run and feet smell. This is another way how English is funny for me, because "feet smell" has two meanings. One, "smell" is a verb, and the other one: "Your feet smell bad." So, I can say: "My nose is running, and your feet smell." Because usually we run with our feet and we smell with our nose. Crazy. Good luck with this language.
The next one I've already kind of talked about, is: "mucus", "snot", or this word which is "phlegm". So, in your language-Japanese, Korean, Spanish-you probably... Not Spanish. But you probably say something close to "nose water", "hana sui". But guess what? In English, no. "Nose water" would be too easy. "Hana mizu", no way. We call it: "mucus", "snot", or "phlegm". We also have another word that's quite fun, it's called a "booger". A booger is something that you pick from your nose and you can flick. The mucus or the snot is the liquid, like the water. Nose water. It's nose water. So, mucus and snot is liquid, and the booger is more of a solid. Delicious. Okay.
Speaking about the nose, we have holes in our nose. Everyone probably has two. Yeah? Most people have two. Does anybody have one nostril out there? Because if you... You'd have to breathe double, I guess. Guess what? They're not called "nose holes", "hana no ana", mm-mm. They're called: "nostrils". Yeah, don't know why. It'd be easier if we just said: "Hey. My nose hole is really not doing too well over here." But we have to say: "My nostril is full of mucus." We can't say: "Hey. My nose hole is full of nose water." People would go: "Ah, cool. Want a Kleenex?" But no, no, we have to use these crazy words.
The other word, like in your language-Spanish "dedo", mm-hmm-you guys probably have something to do with your foot and a finger. Lots of languages you guys will probably say: "foot fingers", but not in English. We have to say: "toes". Hmm. "Foot fingers", it's really funny for me, because I've grown up my whole life knowing them as "toes", but "foot fingers" just makes more sense. English doesn't make sense.
On to the next five. If you have a car and you want to leave the car somewhere near your house, this place is called a "driveway". So, you park your car in a driveway. However, if you want to take your car someplace, like on a drive, you drive on a parkway. Obviously, it would make more sense if I park in my parkway and drive on the driveway, but again, this is why I have a job to teach you the crazy things, this is why learning English makes you crazy. Welcome to my world.