Is Your Command of the English language Good In both Spoken and Written ?

@zandi458 (27952)
Malaysia
May 16, 2009 8:46am CST
I was shocked to be reprimanded by a fellow mylotter on my comments to her response which did not go down well with her. She shot me with her most undiplomatic words saying that I should not tell her to change her words as English is her mother's tongue! It is shocking! In all honesty I might have misinterpreted her response and gave out my honest comments as usual but it was not well received by her. All I ask of her is to simplify her words so I can understand her better but instead come back to tell me something else. It was not my intention to correct someone's else English but only ask to rephrase her words so I can understand what she meant to say but instead met with unpleasant comments. How dare I correct a native speaker whose command of English are perfect compared to mine where English is only my second language. I am not here to teach a duck to swim but to learn from those who are well versed in this language. We all come from different backgrounds and cultures and we have different mindsets. What you think might differs from others. So don't jump your gun before understanding fully the contents of the post/comments. My intentions are sincere and honest and in nowhere undermining anybody's words but since I need some clarifications from her it is only right that I ask. Have you come across such kind of people who think they are more superior than you?
14 people like this
38 responses
@cbeee3 (2064)
• India
16 May 09
There are such people in all walks of life.All I can tell you is don't take it to heart.English may be her mother tongue,but then I know a number of people whose mother tongue is English yet they make grammatical mistakes (My mother tongue is not English yet i spelt "grammatical" correctly..lol). In fact my English is far better than my mother tongue.Unfortunate but true. So if someone corrects me when I am talking in my mother tongue Or asks me to change my wordings so he/she can understand me better, I will most certainly do that and not feel upset. So don't worry. As I already mentioned people like this are everywhere.In our office,our living community..lol..All we can do is smile and not get upset :)
4 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
That is exactly what I am trying to address here. There are two sides of the coin. Even though it is their mother's tongue it is not necessary that they are good in putting their words in print. And I can see it happening here very often with the native speakers. English might not be my mother's tongue but have studied this language since young. English has been part of my everyday communication and is not surprising that I am very confident with this language. But again, since I am in the net, I am more careful with my grammar to meet the standard of the international readers especially in mylot and do not wish to be misunderstood.
2 people like this
@GardenGerty (102464)
• United States
17 May 09
I am well versed in both speaking and writing English. I do not want to sound like I am showing off. I think you have a very valid point. You have been being schooled in English for a very long time, and you may well speak or understand the language better than a native born soeajer,
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
Hi GardenGerty, since English is your mother's tongue, you have every reason to be proud of being good both in spoken and written English. There is no further question asked as that is the language you grow up with. While I learned this language in school and have since accustomed myself to communicate in this language more than my national language. It just flow naturally when I interact with others like breathing air.
1 person likes this
@Pigglies (9339)
• United States
17 May 09
LOL! I am a native speaker but honestly, I'm not much of a language person. I did have an experience though at school where I got a Japanese foreign exchange student as my physics lab partner. On our first experiment I could tell immediately that he was very good at physics, but his spoken English was difficult to understand so I decided to write the lab report and he did the calculations. I bring my part to him and he hands it back after a few moments, with a ton of grammar corrections. He was a bit afraid that I would be offended I think, but honestly I just laughed and told him okay I will change those. I didn't even look them up, I figured he knew what he was doing because he had to study English intensively while I just grew up speaking, reading, and writing it. I don't claim to have perfect grammar. If someone wants to correct me, go for it! I am always happy to learn.
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
I like your attitude. You are so humble and having English as your mother's tongue you are not proud and boastful but understands the difficulties others faced and at the same time do not mind being corrected when the need arises. This kind of open attitude should be adopted by all especially those from the English speaking world and not trying to belittle those who are weak in English.
@Pigglies (9339)
• United States
17 May 09
I think that I am in awe of people who can speak/write/read two different languages. I tried to learn Spanish before and it was very difficult for me. I'm not naturally good at languages, not even my own. I finally gave up on learning Spanish just because I don't think it will be as useful to me as I had originally thought it would be. But I am always trying to improve my English so it doesn't bother me if someone corrects me, even if that person doesn't speak English as their first language.
1 person likes this
@krajibg (11936)
• Guwahati, India
18 May 09
Hi, That should be the spirits. We even if is our first language might not be so versed in spoken and written and accepting the truth as you did there should not be any ego sort of issue related to it. I myself a teacher of English Language and Linguistic in College and believe me I am learning different application of this language till date.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
18 May 09
hi zandi, i believe this are all misinterpretations...i also believe you that you didn't intend to correct anyone's English here as we all know that this community has all national members..i admit that sometime in my stay here that i don't get to understand some words and what it meant because English is never my mother language..English when twisted is giving differrent meaning..just like when many times they use idioms which leads us to misinterpretation..i didn't happen to see that discussion..i don't want to think this is just one of many discriminations in this world but rather all misinterpretations...
2 people like this
• Philippines
18 May 09
and if this is all discrimination problem then i say to heLL with this lady because for all i know, even English is her mother tounge then i challenge her to spell words and construct a gramatical sentences..see if she still can say and boast that English is her mother language...even how many times in a day i speak English i still get wrong with my grammars but its never a shame on me because it is not my mother tounge..DUH! but shame on her if she can't mnage to construct good grammar in a sentence since she's saying out loud its her mother tounge!
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
I believe it is misinterpretations or misunderstandings. Maybe if I am wrong, there is no need to tell me that English is her mother's tongue as if to disgrace me in the eyes of the world that my English is incomprehensible. I feel bad as I did not mean to undermine her proficiency in this language.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
22 May 09
i agree, i cant see a point as to why she needs to say out loud that English is her mother tounge!what's the need for that if she doesn't intend to act racist...i will feel bad as well if i were you...but please always remember that a good person cannot be determine by langguage but by the way how a person is treating its own kind..hugs for you..
1 person likes this
@Opal26 (17690)
• United States
17 May 09
Hey zandi~ I would like to apologize to you on behalf of all of those who do speak English as our mother tongue! I don't know who this person is and can't understand why they got so upset! First of all, you have taken command of the English language as if it is your first language! If I didn't know any better I would have thought that it was your first language! So I have no idea why anyone would dare to say anything to you like you described! I have known people who have always spoken the English language who don't speak it or understand nearly as well as you do! Just ignore the comments of whomever made them to you! Obviously, they are the one that is ignorant!
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
LOL....This lady responded in a way that was quite innocently put and I replied her accordingly but out of the blue she twisted her original response and said I was wrong and I asked her to rephrase her words as I might have misconstrued her real meaning and that angered her saying I have no right to ask her to change her words as English is her mother's tongue. I was taken aback with her words as I didn't mean to create a confrontation with her. Knowing that I come from a non English background she might have thought my knowledge of this language is shallow and can't match the eloquence of the native speakers. Yes, she is ignorant of the fact that English is a global language and non native speakers are good if not better because they have studied this language in depth from young and adopted the language in their daily communication, as far as I am concern.
1 person likes this
@Opal26 (17690)
• United States
19 May 09
Zandi! Never forget what I said! You have mastered the English language better then some that have spoken it since birth! So always be proud of your accomplishments! You are quite the intelligent woman and I am so proud of you and proud more then you could know to be your friend! The English language is the most difficult language to master, as I am sure you already know and you speak it as though you were born into it! That my friend is an accomplishment that is so incredible that no one should ever take away from you! I bow you you, Zandi! You have my utmost respect!
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
21 May 09
I am too careful when I make out discussions here for fear that others don't understand what I am writing especially those native speakers whose population outnumbered the non native speakers in mylot. And what a big surprise I get from you, an original English speaker, words that I never heard before which is more than what I can ask for. Your inspiring words are a prized trophy for me. Thank you for giving me such a wonderful appreciation. It inspires me to write more and proof I too can be as good as the native speakers.
@krajibg (11936)
• Guwahati, India
17 May 09
Hello zandi, fortunately I saw that discussion and put my comment there as promptly as possible. I too was shocked kinda when the user wrote English was her mother tongue and I say there are are thousands and millions English speaking people in the UK , the USA and Australia who are not capable of writing ten coherent and well constructed sentences. This is easily estimated from our own speakers, I mean who are not English speakers but something different. One who is able to speak any Language does not mean that he/she has equal command over his/her written language too. Now for example, English I had never known until I was ten years old and when this was introduced in our school we were forced to learn as it was our second Language and initially I found it difficult to gulp down but as I developed my interest in this language now not only I am well versed in writing I am equally fluent in spoken form too but the difference would be that a native speaker would easily detect that English was not my first Language for there would be differences in the stress and intonation and and the accent. And that user's vainglorious statement is not only conceited but also a mark of ignorance that English is now a global Language.
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
Hi Raj, thanks for sharing your views in that discussion. It is timely that you came to the post as you are specialized in the teaching of English language. I agree with your observations that not all native speakers are able to write proper sentences and it only shows how arrogant this person is when she proudly declare that English is her mother's tongue. To my understanding she thought that being a native speaker she is in full command of the language and non native speakers are no match to her proficiency. It is no use trying to run away from the fact that English is being used more and more in every corners of the world. Though it might not be our first language but that doesn't mean we are less proficient in this language. It is not easy to keep the "purity" of a language intact when other than the natives speak it. Well, yes, English is now a global language and no one can claim that since it is their mother's tongue and needs no correction even they are grammatically incorrect.
2 people like this
@krajibg (11936)
• Guwahati, India
17 May 09
Hi zands, Yes, that I have already put there that English now becoming a global language there is no point if a native speaker claims to superior to other non native speakers. I too pin pointed that We mightn't be as good as them in its accent but did not the British understand the kind of English Mahatma Gandhi said or J. Nehru spoke in the rouble conference before India got its independence. Hypocrisy should be shaken off now at least for their language.
2 people like this
@krajibg (11936)
• Guwahati, India
17 May 09
Typos _ the round table conferences that were held from time to time...
2 people like this
@mlh8087 (370)
• United States
16 May 09
You know what I've learned over the years of training people; that most people read and learn on the 5th grade level. That's not an insult by any means and it doesn't mean I talk down to anyone. It just means what is says. It seems if someone is using big complicated words and talking in abstract terms they are just trying to impress someone. I like when people write the way they talk. It makes for an interesting exchange of thoughts and ideas.
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
Talking and writing have distinct ways of expressing the thoughts. I learned English the hard way and was taught to write in proper words not verbal words.
1 person likes this
@Pigglies (9339)
• United States
17 May 09
That is actually good news for me. I have worked at learning to read for a long time, but I still can only read at a 7th grade level despite that I'll be graduating college soon. I have a reading disability so it makes it difficult for me to advance. I tend to write like I speak because I haven't read enough books to know another way of writing. I try to make everything clear and I try to type so that everything looks easily understandable. Sometimes I do have to ask people to please use better spacing and such in their responses. That is because I am often using a screen reader and it is very difficult to understand the gibberish that I hear when words are put together without the spaces.
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
Hi pigglies, I can understand well what you are trying to convey here. You write the way you talk and this is what exactly mlh meant. It is a very friendly and personal approach. I develop my way of writing as how I was taught in school. It is more to impersonal approach but I can be versatile depending on the topic of discussion.
@kawalnarang (1095)
• Trinidad And Tobago
16 May 09
It becomes a problem as My Grammar was good enough,,the problem I have is in typing the words,, I make a lot of errors,, I try to correct myself,,NOT always easy though,, so please do not worry about it,,
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
It is disturbing my thoughts when I know that I have angered someone here yesterday. The whole of today I refrain from logging to mylot just to get over this unpleasant feelings that is bothering me.
1 person likes this
• Trinidad And Tobago
16 May 09
I think I understand your situation,, But do yourself/me a favour,, stay calm,,( the better choice)
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
@Lakota12 (42684)
• United States
16 May 09
oh my I remeber when you asked me to refraze something I wrote to you and I did the best way I knew how and that time you understood what I was saying. all this person had to do was redo so you understand.. I think you do great with the langage just some of our slang words and things like that throw you some! hugs
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
Yes, I remembered that and it was asked and given in good faith. I really done go for slang words as I can't figure our their meaning well.
1 person likes this
@Lakota12 (42684)
• United States
17 May 09
I know and just let me know fif I do it again which I prbably wilol lol
1 person likes this
@krajibg (11936)
• Guwahati, India
12 Jun 09
Thanks Ma'am
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
12 Jun 09
Yes, you deserve it.
1 person likes this
• United States
18 May 09
Hopefully this other person did not hurt your feelings. Mylot can be a wonderful place. But there are many people here on Mylot that can say hurtful things. If we were all holding a conversation in the same room, I'm sure there would never be a misunderstanding.
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
I agree with you that mylot is a wonderful place but certainly not everyone is friendly here and isolating themselves from others.
1 person likes this
@agrim94 (3811)
• India
17 May 09
Hi zandi, You would find all sort of people out here. Since mylot has attracted persons from all over the world , so we should always try to think what may be normal for us can be very abnormal for anyone else. Like beef eating may be ok with Christians but it is strict NO No for Hindus and last thing we want is there is a problem because of language and you were right if you asked for a simpler words as you can not understand her language. Nothing to get offensive to but people would take anything as criticism especially when they didn't agree to your point of view. Me too have been target of rudeness and best thing is to ignore and let the rude person know that she is not even worth giving negative rating
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
I do keep my mind open to the attitudes of people in mylot. That we cannot run away from being humiliated or belittled by some mean people but not everytime I am in my best thinking mind as I am often being carried away by emotions and take matters too personal which I should not be. The only recourse to gain back my senses is to share with everyone here so the big chunk of sadness that is suffocating my right thinking mind is lifted.
@peedielyn (1210)
• United States
16 May 09
This is so funny. Not that you were persecuted for what you said but I have a step-monster that does this to me all the time. I was raised using big, intelligent words of the English language. My father has an IQ that you have never heard of and then some so my brother and I were taught very well on how to speak, write and read. On the other hand, --AND THIS IS NOT TO OFFEND ANYONE FROM THE SOUTH-- my step-monster speaks her words very fumbled up and then with her accent, it makes it worse. When she begins to belittle me and my brother for the big words that we use-that do make us look either smart or smart-a$$ed, she ends up looking really bad. She has always thought that she was smarter than us and brags that she got kicked out of school in the 10th grade. Good luck to you. I thought I would share my story!
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
Thanks for sharing your story and it seems that your step monster is an empty shell.
1 person likes this
@littleowl (7157)
16 May 09
Hi zandi, Yes it happens now and again to me but when I get peoples reply like that I let it ride over my head..it is too much negativity especially when you mean it well not condasendingly, so try not to let it worry you too much...anyway think I spelt condascend wrong!! lol...hugs LoLo
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
I can accept that sometimes we do meet negativity from people who test our patience but writing one thing and meaning differently just doesn't make sense.
1 person likes this
@aikhong (664)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
Oh my pity to you. Perhaps it's just merely a misunderstanding. I think it'll be fine if you can explain to her in soft words and hopefully she'll understand what you mean. If she's still insist of her thinkin and do not ever listen to your explaination, then i think there's nothing much you can do. Just let it be and may time can cure it. Anyway, it's best that this misunderstanding can be solved as soon as possible. It is better to have a friend than an enemy, right? Just try to do your part and leave the rest to God, and her. So far i haven't meet such persons in myLot. All the people here are just nice and respond very politely and i appreciate their comments. Everytime i post or comment to others' topic, i will try to keep my words simple and easy to understand. This is partly because my command of english is just fine only. I can't say that i'm good in english written or spoken because English is my second language too and i'm still learning it.
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
From my past experience here, this kind of happening is bound to happen and this one is the latest one that has given me some deep thoughts as why some people are not that open minded and refuse to accept others views openly.
@CatsandDogs (13964)
• United States
16 May 09
To be truthful zandi, some people are too busy reading into something that isn't there and are quick to jump to conclusions. Some get off on being the ultimate superior of anything just to get that attention of being THE superior. Take the high road and try ONE time to explain what you meant and if she can't take THAT explanation then let her have what's really on your mind. Some people need to be put in their places and get that "oh so almighty" knocked off of their shoulders.
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
My lengthy explanation might have knock her hard and could not take it so she come up with what she said in her comments. I don't blame her for acting superior as the big figures besides her name explains well that she does not want to accept defeat from a dwarf and be overshadowed.
1 person likes this
@Hedwig (285)
• China
16 May 09
I think so.At least in most occations, my English is good enough to express myself, but occationally, I do have problems to express some specific ideas. When I was quite young, I used to consider that one day I would be able to have a good command of English as a native speaker. However, after so many years of hard work, I have already conquered CET6 and IELTs with excellent results, but, still, there is a long way to go.
2 people like this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
English is a beautiful language that would take years to master. As long as we can express ourselves clearly and be understood, that is good enough.
1 person likes this
@sanuanu (11238)
• India
17 May 09
Well, I never ask for anyone to use simple words or something like that becaue there are many websites available on internet from where we can make out the meanings of those complex words. I always like if someone uses a perfect English gives me more chance to lean more and more about this language. As for me, I think My English is very bad. I would give only 4 star out of 10 to my Englihs and that is why I look for opportunity to enhance it.
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
I would not give you a perfect 10 as we are in the same situation, English not being our mother's tongue but is it too much if I award you with 8 out of 10. You are doing perfectly fine here. I find no handicap in your written words and the big figures besides your name speaks loud and clear that you are in the bracket parallel to the native speakers.
1 person likes this
@sanuanu (11238)
• India
18 May 09
That is so very nice of you. Getting 8 out of 10 is a big achievement for me. What exactly was the reason why you asked this person to simplify her Englihs?
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
She wrote her response which I truly understood and commented to her but she said I was wrong so I asked her to simplify her words to see what she really meant. She got mad and told me off that I am not suppose to ask her to change her words.
1 person likes this
@savypat (20246)
• United States
16 May 09
Once in a while I come to the notice of one of these persons. I try to stay below their high level of what ever they think is theirs. If I get noticed I tend to forget it and just not get involved, I'm not here to get into anything that upsets me. Sometimes a subject will push my buttons but I try to delete or at least step back from the discussion until I cool down. I only have so much energy and I don't want to get distracted on how I spend it. Blessing to you, I always enjoy your discussions. By the way what is your primary language? You write so well I would have thought it was English.
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
16 May 09
It did upset me and did not log in to mylot the whole of today not until now. Lol, though English is not my mother's tongue but have learned this language since young so am quite comfortable communicating in English everyday be it spoken or written. I am multi lingual and I speak our local dialects besides our national language, english and chinese. It is weird but I speak few languages but master of none. Being in a multi racial society I tend to pick the different languages where I am in and of course it is a great asset to me since I am in a service kind of business.
1 person likes this
@savypat (20246)
• United States
16 May 09
What a wonderful gift you have to be able to learn languages, I have no talent that way,
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
18 May 09
I am glad that my antenna is quite sensitive to the multi racial society where I live which enable me to learn the various dialects and languages at ease. However, English has always been in the front line of my daily communication and being in mylot everyday do wonders to my written English. Being in the virtual world have taught me to see and to learn while in the physical world it is the ears that play the important role in learning and absorbing other languages.
@Trensue (5253)
• United States
18 May 09
I may have been one of those people who thought they knew more than you and I am not proud of that. But catch me on the wrong day and I may be mean and insensitive. I hope if you find me in one of those foul moods that you correct me immediately and draw it to my attention. That is the way to handle bullies. Call them out. If it was a mistake and they misunderstood they will apologize, if they don't then simply cross them off your list. What do you think?
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
21 May 09
There is no place for bullies in mylot. We should learn to tolerate others weaknesses and assist them when needed. Getting annoyed will only show how foolish that person is and losing temper for small matters is a waste of time.
1 person likes this
@Trensue (5253)
• United States
22 May 09
Thank you for pointing out how small minded and foolish that I am. It is clearly stated that because I admitted I have lost my patience there is no place for me on mylot -
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
1 Jun 09
Please don't get offended. This is my general views and not directed to anyone.
@kalav56 (11502)
• India
17 May 09
Hi Zandi, I am decent in both written and spoken English.One reason is thatI had a convent upbringing ; SECONDLY,Literature is my subject.All native speakers do not write absOlutely proper English because I do see plenty of grammatical mistakes.I may also make mistakes, esp. typos and sometimes I may post my responses with errors.Nowadays, I do not fret too much because at times, my browser troubles me no end while typing and I get far too impatient and post it fast. YOu do not worry about this person who has misunderstood you.Just ignore her response .You asked something and if she has to be rude that is totally unnecessary.Not all native speakers have got doctorates in English.[ducks that swim] there are also 'quacks'. Do not bother to respond to her future discussions.One person was unnecessarily rude to me once.I have not come across this person again and nor have I answered this person's discussion.
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
Hi kalav, I grew up in a convent too with all the western nuns and that gave me my first brush with the English language. I was then 6 years old and grew up speaking English with the Franciscan sisters everyday for 7 years before I left to rejoin my family. Actually this lady responded to my discussion but my first impression of her response made me comment which she bluntly said am all wrong and I ask her to please simplify her words (though I can understand her response well)which angered here. As much as I wanted to go on with her in my comments, I stop short when I feel it is turning ugly.
@kalav56 (11502)
• India
17 May 09
No wonder you write good English Zandi;and that was indeed a wise thing to have done.WHat is the point trying to convince a rude person.? Ignoring is the best thing and you have beautifully done it.
1 person likes this
@zandi458 (27952)
• Malaysia
17 May 09
Oh... kalav, Thank you for your compliments. Compliments and praises are always music to my ears.