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Poll: Do you notice other people's pet expressions?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
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SITE STAFF
Nov 14, 2007

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you notice other people's pet expressions?".

This poll was originally submitted by Romina Bona

View the poll here

A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Kathryn Strachecky  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:01
French to English
Yes and I like it Nov 14, 2007

I like it when people have a pet expression, it somehow becomes part of who they are. I can understand why some people would find it annoying, but I find it endearing!

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ST Translations
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:01
French to English
Pet expressions Nov 14, 2007

What is a "pet expression"? Is it like a favourite expression? Is this an American expression?

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Erik Hansson  Identity Verified
Germany
Member (2002)
Swedish
+ ...
Explanation, please. Nov 14, 2007

This is not the first time that we get an enigmatic poll topic. Could somebody please explain this to a non-native.
BTW, I think it's about time to introduce the poll "Have you ever wanted to change your answer because you misunderstood the poll?".


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Romina Bona  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 09:01
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
It annoys me a little Nov 14, 2007

I proposed this poll because I realized that, unlike Kathryn, I cannot help but noticing other people's pet expressions in a somewhat annoying way. Once I know that a person is systematically using the same word or filler every two sentences I start counting the times the word is repeated. Am I the only one out there? Am I shrink material? I guess I'll know when I see the final results.



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John Cutler  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:01
Spanish to English
+ ...
Pet defined and more... Nov 14, 2007

I don’t know if it’s an exclusively American expression or not. I found it in The Oxford (British) dictionary:

pet1
• noun 1 a domestic or tamed animal or bird kept for companionship or pleasure. 2 a person treated with special favour. 3 used as an affectionate form of address.
• adjective 1 relating to or kept as a pet. 2 favourite or particular: my pet hate.


The definition would be like number 2 under adjective.

My answer would be that I’ve worked with 25 other people at my in-house job for the last 6 years.

We all know each other’s pet expressions and have a great time good-naturedly ribbing and imitating each other.

I’m known for my comment (normally said after lunch and with an imitation Andalusian accent, “Toi cansao” (I’m tired). It’s practically my trademark now.

That of course is different from the "fillers" people use when they're speaking: the uhs, ahs, ums or whatever "word" is used in other languages. Those I find annoying.


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Mihail M Mateev
Bulgaria
Local time: 14:01
Member
English to Bulgarian
+ ...
How this particular poll is related to translator's profession? Nov 14, 2007

How this particular poll is related to translation's profession?

[Edited at 2007-11-14 13:56]


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Romina Bona  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 09:01
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Language and translation - interpretation Nov 14, 2007

Mihail Mateev wrote:

How this particular poll is related to translation's profession?

[Edited at 2007-11-14 13:56]


My idea is to see if there is a pattern among language professionals. I personally believe that we have some unique characteristics in common that people in other professions don't have.

On the other hand, interpreters deal with spoken language all the time and I think that a person's idiolect (ie the variety of a language unique to an individual manifested by patterns of word selection and grammar, or words, phrases, idioms, or pronunciation) affects their job. In my opinion this question is indeed pertinent.


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:01
Italian to English
+ ...
Why does it have to be about translation? Nov 14, 2007

There've been other off-topic polls before, most of which I haven't answered as I'm not interested. But this one did interest me, so I answered:

"Yes, and it's annoying".

I interpreted it as somewhere in between the ums / ers and an actual "catchphrase" (such as John's “Toi cansao”).
Examples include my partner's use of "praticamente" in every sentence (which I picked up on and we've managed to eliminate it, the reason being that it doesn't actually sound particularly professional or intelligent to keep using the same word as a filler when it has no relation to what you're actually saying), a friend's use of "you know" about half a dozen times a sentence, and another friend's excessive use of "non so se mi spiego bene". I don't pick up on those though, even if they make me wince a little.

[Edited at 2007-11-14 15:41]


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:01
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
No big deal Nov 14, 2007

It only became annoying once or twice when I had to transcribe tapes at conventions.

If you're a reviser, you also notice that some translators tend to have set translation preferences for certain recurrent phrases/words/expressions.

When you're interpreting they can get to be pain if repeated too often, or, for that matter, abused.


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:01
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Oh, and Nov 14, 2007

Marie-Hélène Hayles wrote:

Examples include my partner's use of "praticamente" in every sentence (which I picked up on and we've managed to eliminate it, the reason being that it doesn't actually sound particularly professional or intelligent to keep using the same word as a filler when it has no relation to what you're actually saying), a friend's use of "you know" about half a dozen times a sentence, and another friend's excessive use of "non so se mi spiego bene". I don't pick up on those though, even if if they make me wince a little.


pseudoqualifiers are a bummer.


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Claire Cox
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:01
French to English
+ ...
No big deal Nov 14, 2007

I answered "Yes, but it's no big deal", although actually it can be really annoying (like the fashion for young people to sprinkle their sentences with "you know" or "like" or (even worse) "innit"). Likewise it can also be quite endearing and sometimes even rather addictive. I picked up the Scottish "uh huh" when I lived up there for 9 years and it's actually an extremely useful way of letting other people know you're still listening. I still get teased about it by certain parties now I'm down in the South of England though!

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Konstantin Kisin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:01
Member (2004)
Russian to English
+ ...
depends Nov 14, 2007

If you mean certain phrases/turns of speech that people like to use then I really enjoy that and collect them, if you like.

If you mean filler words such as "like" etc then it annoys me as little else can. I was talking to a school friend of mine the other day and when I asked him a question his answer was "Well, like, you know, basically, it's like...err, well, like, I'd like to do it, like, but only if it's, like, awesome and I'm, like, not sure if it's going to be, like, like that. Know what I mean?"

To which I truthfully replied: "No."



[Edited at 2007-11-14 16:45]


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Cuiviewen  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:01
English to Spanish
+ ...
So on and so forth and so forth and so forth Nov 14, 2007

I personally feel pet expressions can be somewhat endearing or terribly annoying, depending on several factors. Actually I tend to be quite oblivious to them until someone like Romina points them out, and then once I´ve crossed that threshold it´s a point of no return... She has this unbelievable habit of picking them up and imitating them, she´s a human pet expression detector!
The most mind-boggling "pet expression" I´ve ever heard was in a lecture at University: there was a student doing a presentation, and he kept using "so on and so forth" at the end of every single sentence... He did it so frequently that I had to look away, cover my face and close my eyes, because I was on the verge of bursting into laughter!


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Andrea Riffo  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 09:01
English to Spanish
... Nov 14, 2007

Konstantin Kisin wrote:

If you mean filler words such as "like" etc then it annoys me as little else can. I was talking to a school friend of mine the other day and when I asked him a question his answer was "Well, like, you know, basically, it's like...err, well, like, I'd like to do it, like, but only if it's, like, awesome and I'm, like, not sure if it's going to be, like, like that. Know what I mean?"

To which I truthfully replied: "No."




:lol::lol:

(kudos for letting him finish his sentence)


We call those "muletillas" in Spanish, and I am loathe to admit that I have quite a few.


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