I am so fucking sick of seeing posts on this website that say, “English is so weird and quirky, nothing follows ‘rules’ and idioms are weird, English isn’t similar or related to any other languages!”
Listen, you poor monolingual fucks—English is an interesting, beautiful language, but it’s not super duper special or unique. You only think that because you haven’t learned any other languages to the point of achieving the same proficiency in them as you have English!
Take plurals, for instance. A lot of people think English nouns “don’t follow rules” when they pluralize, which is blatantly false. “Foot” changing to “feet” and “ox” to “oxen” are not alone in the language—they are part of patterns, uncommon though they may be. “Feet” is in the same group as “geese” and “teeth”; “ox” matches “women” and “children.”
A lot of people harp on the way English phrases things—why is it that the sun being “out” and a lamp being “out” are opposites? In Latin, people have to redundantly “enter into” or “exit out of” buildings. When a Czech speaker feels an emotion, they literally “feel themselves to be” that emotion.
People say that English has incomprehensible orthography—why are words sometimes pronounced the same but spelled differently, or vice versa? Sure, it’s complex, but you don’t see English speakers writing words down while leaving out the notations for vowel sounds, the way someone writing in Arabic might, let alone learning thousands of characters, a new one for each idea, as one does when writing Chinese.
English is unique for taking on so many loanwords, people say. But really, in an increasingly globalized world, every language needs to adopt loanwords—the attitude of, say, French speakers, in which organized bodies resist loanwords and concoct new terms from pre-existing roots, is most certainly the exception and not the rule. A Japanese speaker might have a hottodogu for lunch, head out to the shoppingu-sentaa, or consider their friend a sumaato dresser.
English is not an “island” of a language, with no known relatives, either. English is a Teutonic language with ties to German and Dutch, and earlier forms of the language can be traced back a thousand years in the past.
Listen—I love the English language as much as anybody. But I’m sick and tired of so many silly misconceptions and misunderstandings getting thrown around.