Philip Newton (pne) wrote,
Philip Newton

Plus ça change... // Frederick // Amy

I just read in a journal entry from a hotel worker who had some kids come in who "just needed the bathroom and wireless".

That reminded me of what "wireless" used to mean (though I've usually seen it with article: "the wireless").

While that journal entry is the first time I've seen "wireless" by itself used to mean (presumably) "wireless LAN", I suppose that usage could be gaining ground.

I felt it was kind of interesting how the meaning of the word is changing. Or, perhaps one should say: how the word went away and a homophonous word arose a while later.

Amy's cousin Frederick is over for a couple of days while my sister is away.

His language situation is sort of the opposite of Amy's: he also speaks English and German, but his first language is English, since that's what my sister speaks to him. Good that he knows German, though, so he'll understand Stella - and Amy, who talks to him in German nearly all of the time I've heard the two together. Apparently, he switches to German when speaking to her, too, though I haven't heard him speak to her yet. I think he also knows Spanish, though I haven't heard him speak that yet.

Also, random word from Amy: a couple of days ago, Stella was watering a plant. I asked Amy what Mummy was doing, and she replied, "Gießing"! That amused me :).

In German, "gießen" means to pour (liquid) or to water (a plant), depending on the direct object. I wonder whether Amy was encouraged to form this chimeric word by the fact that the morpheme /gi:s/ also exists in her English vocabulary: geese. Interesting that she used the correct English form, in -ing.

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