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Terminology Differences

Ernest Bywater

In some recent stories I sparked some interesting threads to do with the differences in the meanings of terms. In the process we learned many terms don't have the same meanings in all parts of the same country, as well as being different in other countries. So I thought I'd post a few terms from New South Wales, Australia which many people here would've thought were universal, and aren't - this is not a comprehensive list.

carpark, car park, car-park - open space at ground level where you park cars

car yard - open space where cars are on display for sale by the business - note: car lot is fast becoming the new term for this.

lot - a section of land in a development that hasn't yet been built on, often not yet sold

house lot - a section of land set aside to build a residential house on but not yet built on, most are in new housing developments

house block - section of land a house is built on and defined by the fence line

housing block - usually a large section of houses on one section of land, most are connected with military bases

street block or city block - a section of buildings bound on all sides by a street or natural boundary like a river

flat - individual living area that's part of a larger unit, most are 1 or 2 bedroom residences in a big blocks of flats. Most are often owned by the one company or person and rented out (USA think Brownstone bedsit).

unit or apartment - as above, but usually 2 or 3 or 4 bedroom places of higher quality and individually owned within a corporate strata title (USA think condominium)

garage - place to store a car or cars located with a single residence. Also often used to refer to where you buy fuel for cars and have work done on cars etc.

parking garage - multi-level place to park cars, usually for a fee.

tenement - 1 or 2 or 3 bedroom residence with virtually no front yard, little back yard, jammed up against each other in rows in a street. Think industrial era multi-story housing for workers.

town house - as a tenement but higher quality and usually has a garage built into it at ground level.

duplex - two separate houses built with a common wall and designed to look like a single house from the outside.

I figure that's enough to give some people an idea of what sort of terms get different meanings when others post what terms they use for the same things.

Crumbly Writer
Updated:

Most are often owned by the one company or person and rented out (USA think Brownstone bedsit

The U.S. has flats (not brownstones, which is something different), but we instead call them 'apartments'.

A "brownstone" are small houses in a city that often sit between (adjacent and abutting other buildings) that are often multiple story. They're called 'brownstones' because the buildings are typified by the buildings (still widely used) build in Manhattan and surrounding cities which used a particular type of stone. Nowadays, (like they did originally), they're favored by the young, up and coming families who want privacy in the middle of a busy city environment (though they date back to the late 1800s).

Likewise, "duplex" refers to a specific type of house, popular in the U.S. during the 50s - 70s where they'd build a single building containing two separate houses. They've since fallen out of favor, and are hardly seen anymore (i.e. you almost never see a new duplex).

Joe Long
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

carpark, car park, car-park - open space at ground level where you park cars


Parking lot

car yard - open space where cars are on display for sale by the business - note: car lot is fast becoming the new term for this.


'Used car lot' is common but usually 'Dealership' in general, if new or both new & used

lot - a section of land in a development that hasn't yet been built on, often not yet sold


Same

house lot - a section of land set aside to build a residential house on but not yet built on, most are in new housing developments

house block - section of land a house is built on and defined by the fence line

housing block - usually a large section of houses on one section of land, most are connected with military bases

street block or city block - a section of buildings bound on all sides by a street or natural boundary like a river


Housing lot, housing block, city block

flat - individual living area that's part of a larger unit, most are 1 or 2 bedroom residences in a big blocks of flats. Most are often owned by the one company or person and rented out (USA think Brownstone bedsit).

unit or apartment - as above, but usually 2 or 3 or 4 bedroom places of higher quality and individually owned within a corporate strata title (USA think condominium)


Not flats, but units, apartments or, if individually owned, condos.

parking garage, tenement, town house, duplex


Same.

So not as different as you might have thought.

Not like having some BEE-ah in the boot.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@Joe Long

'Used car lot' is common but usually 'Dealership' in general, if new or both new & used

The reason why "lot" is used, when it isn't 'undeveloped' is because is isn't thought of as being "fully Developed" (i.e. there are no 'building' on it, thus it's still an 'empty' lot, even though it's paved and in full use.

Replies:   Joe Long
Joe Long

@Crumbly Writer

'Used car lots' are frequently an area with many cars for sale parked on it along with a minimal building acting as an office. Often it's just a trailer in a small scale operation. Therefor, 'lot' is the primary descriptor.

New cars are sold in a facility which normally has a more substantial building with that being the primary feature.

We feel the need to modify 'car lot' to 'used car lot' not there are no 'new car lots.'

imsly1

It might take a moment for some people to grasp the terminology.. but to me that makes some stories more interesting than others... and I used Ernest's usages as a plus...

I get a kick out of listening to old people or people from other parts of the country sit down and tell their stories...you learn a lot.. and hear their different accents or Speech points...

Crumbly Writer

@Joe Long

We feel the need to modify 'car lot' to 'used car lot' not there are no 'new car lots.'

A 'new car lot" is any car lot that wasn't there the last time you passed the intersection!

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


A 'new car lot" is any car lot that wasn't there the last time you passed the intersection!


I can't wait for readers' reactions when your next story has a character starting work in a new-car lot with free customer-parking next to the purple people-eater's used-car lot.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

next to the purple people-eater's used-car lot.


nah, it'll be beside Barry's Bonza Breakfast Bar.

boydpercy

In New Orleans there is a term that is sometimes used for a certain type of Duplex, a Shotgun Double. Supposedly, one can stand at the front door and fire a shotgun straight through to the back door. These are found mostly in lower, working class neighborhoods. A similar type of building in better neighborhoods are called Townhouse Doubles.

Replies:   Dominions Son
StarFleet Carl

@Joe Long

'Used car lots' are frequently an area with many cars for sale parked on it along with a minimal building acting as an office. Often it's just a trailer in a small scale operation. Therefor, 'lot' is the primary descriptor.

New cars are sold in a facility which normally has a more substantial building with that being the primary feature.


Most (but not all) New Car Dealerships also sell pre-owned cars. Some of them have split floors - where you have both new and pre-owned sales staff and they work separately, and some are mixed floors - you can sell both new and pre-owned. Note that ALL new car companies (not the dealership but the actual car company - Ford, Honda, etc.) require new car sales staff to be certified on their product - which means that if you have an auto mall that might have 6 different car lines under the same general dealer, you can't just talk to a customer at the Chrysler store and then take them to the Honda store next door and sell them a Honda.

A Used car lot may be a traditional finance place, or they may be a buy here, pay here, place - which are called tote the note lots.

Also note that there are no national laws regarding taxes on car purchases - they vary between states. What one state may call a license plate, another may call a tag, and the rules on fees and even if you trade your car in on whether or not you keep your plate / tag vary.

Yeah, I may know WAY too much about this stuff. But other than working about 60 hours a week, it's actually a pretty decent living.

Replies:   Joe Long
Joe Long

@StarFleet Carl

The used car lot has a sign out front of the trailer that says, "No credito, no disponible, no problemo"

Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

I don't know if this fits, but this was part of a post from an Irish author.

For instance, in a book set in Ireland, the characters go to the Registry Office to get married. The American publisher wanted to change it to City Hall, because that's where Americans get married. We comprised [sic compromised] by making it obvious what happens in a Registry Office.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

duplex - two separate houses built with a common wall and designed to look like a single house from the outside.


A duplex does not have to be side by side, they can be built as a 2-story house with separate and complete living spaces on each floor and usually common entrances with a inner door to the lower unit and stairs up to the upper unit.

My mother owns a 2-level duplex, and those are far more common in my state than side by side duplexes.

In my neck of the woods "flat" usually refers to a rental unit in an over/under duplex.

My parents rented out the upper flat when I was younger and my brother and his family (wife, daughter) live in the upper unit now.

Dominions Son

@boydpercy

In New Orleans there is a term that is sometimes used for a certain type of Duplex, a Shotgun Double.


You can find a few of those in certain parts of the upper mid-west as well.

rustyken

@Ernest Bywater

flat is where the living space occupies a whole floor of a building and the building is obviously multiple stories. However, I think the term was originally associated with 2 story buildings with each unit having a separate entrance. They would most likely has multiple bedrooms. May have as much floor space as a detached house.

Cheers

Replies:   Switch Blayde  Grant
Switch Blayde

@rustyken

flat is where the


You won't see that on SOL unless the female character is real young. Seems like authors write about busty women.

Grant
Updated:

@rustyken

@Ernest Bywaterflat
flat is where the living space occupies a whole floor of a building and the building is obviously multiple stories. However, I think the term was originally associated with 2 story buildings with each unit having a separate entrance. They would most likely has multiple bedrooms. May have as much floor space as a detached house.
Cheers

Generally it used to be the case that Flats were rented, Units were individually owned, although these days the terms seem to be used interchangeably.

A block of flats would all be owed by the one person (or business), and each one rented out. The entire complex is under a single title. If it were to ever be sold, the entire building would be sold, not individual flats.
With a block of Units each unit is under it's own title, (it could be the whole lot are owned by one person, but that's rather unusual). When it comes to selling, only a particular Unit would be sold, not the entire building as each Unit is under a separate title.
Then there are Townhouses which can best be described as multi-level (or just much larger, fancier) units. Once again, like a Unit, in a single building, each with it's own title.

Capt. Zapp

@Switch Blayde

You won't see that on SOL unless the female character is real young. Seems like authors write about busty women.


Of course you will. not everyone likes mounds of flesh you could suffocate between. I personally prefer tangerines, not grapefruit or watermelons. More than a mouthful is a waste.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Joe Long
Updated:

@Switch Blayde


You won't see that on SOL unless the female character is real young. Seems like authors write about busty women.


More than a mouthful is a waste

ED: That's what happens when one comments before reading to the end. I will confess that below a certain size won't allow a titty fuck.

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

We comprised [sic compromised] by making it obvious what happens in a Registry Office.

That's not really a compromise, it's making the story understandable to anyone who might read it, rather than simply assuming that all your readers have lived their entire lives in Ireland.

It's better to teach readers about cultural differences than it is to simply ignore them all. After all, if you don't learn something by reading, then why do it at all?

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

You won't see that on SOL unless the female character is real young. Seems like authors write about busty women.

SOL readers like full, busty stories with plenty of meat for them to chew on (mixed metaphor, I know).

Crumbly Writer

@Capt. Zapp

More than a mouthful is a waste.

More than a mouthful leave plenty for your hands to play with too! But I've always preferred the youthful athletic types (who typically develop more slowly than those who aren't)—despite few of my girlfriends fitting that mold as they grew older.

It's what I know from my youth, and we rarely write about the women of our old age.

Replies:   Joe Long
Joe Long

@Crumbly Writer

In the United States, a couple must first go to a government office, almost always one in the county courthouse, to get a marriage license. For the actual marriage, they then choose a private event in a church or home by a minister or other official eligible to do so, or return to one of various government offices to use one of their eligible people to officiate. These are most commonly district magistrates or county judges.

AS CW suggests, know what happens where your story is set and as part of it show the readers the process.

Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

After all, if you don't learn something by reading, then why do it at all?


Escape from our dreary, boring lives.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Joe Long

@Crumbly Writer

It's what I know from my youth, and we rarely write about the women of our old age.


Spot on.

I find myself attracted to the first set of women who gave me that reaction as a youth, and over the years have expanded the age limit upwards while maintaining the lower limit.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

That's not really a compromise, it's making the story understandable


Isn't that a compromise? She kept the Registry Office, but in order to do that she had to clarify it for an American reader (since it was an American publisher and editor).

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
StarFleet Carl

@Joe Long

In the United States, a couple must first go to a government office, almost always one in the county courthouse, to get a marriage license. For the actual marriage, they then choose a private event in a church or home by a minister or other official eligible to do so, or return to one of various government offices to use one of their eligible people to officiate. These are most commonly district magistrates or county judges.


Or, and it's not very common, do both. That's what my wife and I did - had a civil ceremony so that (a) she could go on my insurance and (b) I could get FMLA time off for a surgery she still had to go through, then several months later have the religious ceremony at the church.

We celebrate our anniversary as the religious ceremony, btw.

Replies:   Joe Long
Joe Long
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


Or, and it's not very common, do both.


My parents were college students and one day my mom found herself pregnant with me. They took a quick trip to Virginia where parental permission wasn't required to marry and then returned to campus.

Dad hadn't told his mother yet, and knowing that she'd insist on a church wedding they broke the news a few weeks later and soon went down the aisle. Having confessed to the elopement, they told everyone that it happened months earlier than actually happened, giving a date nine months before I was due.

However, Ancestry.com now has Virginia marriage licenses online and a search revealed their documents, less than six months before my birth.

sejintenej

@Joe Long

My parents were college students and one day my mom found herself pregnant with me.
Having confessed to the elopement, they told everyone that it happened months earlier than actually happened, giving a date nine months before I was due.

However, Ancestry.com now has Virginia marriage licenses online and a search revealed their documents, less than six months before my birth


Official records are not always accurate /complete /subject to misinterpretation. I had to get a copy of my mother's birth certificate by post and I gave them all the detail - complete name, place, date, parents,microfilm record reference etc.
I got back a certificate giving her first names as Marion Ann (correct last name) which was wrong!!!
Investigating further - I had a photocopy of the original - I discovered that her original certificate was Marion Ann ... but with the official rejoinder ON THE ORIGINAL CERTIFICATE that it had been changed to Marion J... **
A letter to Dublin and they immediately emailed an apology and sent the correct certificate.

I am certain Ancestry would get that wrong - they seem to have got stuff about my grandmother and father wrong as well

** I need an original birth certificate to get a new passport

sejintenej

@Joe Long

In the United States, a couple must first go to a government office, almost always one in the county courthouse, to get a marriage license. For the actual marriage, they then choose a private event in a church or home by a minister or other official eligible to do so, or return to one of various government offices to use one of their eligible people to officiate

We have a legal hiatus in England. The person officiating at a wedding must hold a licence to do so. The Church of England is OK in that it legally exists and it's clergy generally get licensed.
The RC church used to consider itself above temporal law so it did not register and therefore was not legally a religiou or even corporate body. It suggested / ordered that its priests did not apply for a licence so they could not marry people. I do not know if this situation still exists.

This could have stymied my wife and I except that it was normal practice for the local town registrar to be in the church vestry and carry out the legal wedding immediately after the Roman Catholic church service.

I must stress that the Roman Catholic Church is held in as high regard as the Protestant Church. Indeed the gentleman who organised the coronation of the Queen at Westminster Abbey in 1953 is well known as being a Roman Catholic.

That said, the Prime Minister must advise on the appointment of any member of the Church of England but is prohibited from doing so if he/she is a Roman Catholic or a Jew (as has happened). There is no such bar on Moslems, Hindus or any other religion!!!!!

sejintenej
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

Some London area terminology


carpark, car park, car-park - open space at ground level where you park cars


Carpark or where applicable( sometimes but not necessarily included) multistorey carpark

car yard - open space where cars are on display for sale by the business - note: car lot is fast becoming the new term for this.


(car) dealer's lot

house lot - a section of land set aside to build a residential house on but not yet built on, most are in new housing developments


Building plot (with or without permission to build)

house block - section of land a house is built on and defined by the fence line


Plot

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@sejintenej


I am certain Ancestry would get that wrong - they seem to have got stuff about my grandmother and father wrong as well


I've done a lot of genealogy work and assisted at a Family History Center. One thing I can tell you, from experience - never trust anything where the source if Ancestry.com - they do have information drawn from many databases around the world, but they also accept a lot of information people have entered from their memories or sloppy research. The bad data out weights the valid data on that site by a ration of 5 to 1. So check the source they quote, and if it isn't a reliable source, ignore it. Another thing about Ancestry.com is anything you place on that site they allow anyone else to copy into their files and use, so be very careful of what you include.

typo edit

Replies:   Crumbly Writer  Joe Long
awnlee jawking

@sejintenej

(car) dealer's lot


Is that because the population of Londonistan mainly speak American English? :(

AJ

Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

Escape from our dreary, boring lives.

You can do both. Better yet, is when you learn something new without realizing it (i.e. the author doesn't make it obvious he's 'teaching' you a lesson).

Fiction allows readers to live other lives. Hopefully, their world's will expand by spending times in other people's shoes, whatever size or shape they may be.

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

Isn't that a compromise? She kept the Registry Office, but in order to do that she had to clarify it for an American reader (since it was an American publisher and editor).

That wasn't a compromise because she didn't change her story, instead she faced to plot hole she hadn't noticed (an unclear situation) and she plugged it. That's a normal part of writing, not a compromise with a publisher who wants a different story (largely to make the book less political or objectionable).

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Crumbly Writer

@Joe Long

However, Ancestry.com now has Virginia marriage licenses online and a search revealed their documents, less than six months before my birth.

There's the truth, then there's what we're willing to admit to family.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Crumbly Writer

@sejintenej

I am certain Ancestry would get that wrong - they seem to have got stuff about my grandmother and father wrong as well

Many people from the islands (Jamaica or other Caribbean islands) often didn't register home births until months or even years later, so many of their birth certificates list the incorrect ages (fairly routine for remote villages).

Replies:   sejintenej
Crumbly Writer

@sejintenej

(car) dealer's lot

Technically, a "car lot" refers to a lot containing cars for sale, whereas a car dealer's lot can be any lot owned by the car dealer, even a new undeveloped home.

Replies:   sejintenej
Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

Another thing about Ancestry.com is anything you place on that site they allow anyone else to copy into their files and use, so be very careful of what you include.

Hackers are known to use Ancestry.com for information to guess user's password clues (when they claim they 'forgot' someone else's password).

Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

There's the truth, then there's what we're willing to admit to family.

I always thought you were a right ... :-)

sejintenej
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


I am certain Ancestry would get that wrong - they seem to have got stuff about my grandmother and father wrong as well

OTOH I trust them enough to expect that you and I will get libel writs through our doors tomorrow

Many people from the islands (Jamaica or other Caribbean islands) often didn't register home births until months or even years later, so many of their birth certificates list the incorrect ages (fairly routine for remote villages).


A few months ago I was reading in a UK public library the official translation of the original 1210 account of the visit of King John to Carlingford. I also downloaded the (translated) text of statutes from the 1200's - the info is available.

My reference was to dates in the 20th century within the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. I can understand things being different in distant parts of the previous British Empire but within the UK itself - that goes to show how much I trust Ancestry

OTOH I trust them enough to expect that you and I will get libel writs through our doors tomorrow

sejintenej

@Crumbly Writer

Technically, a "car lot" refers to a lot containing cars for sale, whereas a car dealer's lot can be any lot owned by the car dealer, even a new undeveloped home.

Sorry; I disagree on that one. We don't use the word "lot" to refer to an undeveloped bit of land - that would be a plot

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Joe Long


However, Ancestry.com now has Virginia marriage licenses online and a search revealed their documents, less than six months before my birth.


Some such information can be both correct and wrong. I don't know how often it was done in the USA, but I do know of some cases where it was done, but it was common in the British Isles for people to have two church weddings - one in the parish of the groom and one in the parish of the bride. Sometimes they were a week apart, and some times they were months apart.

Here in Australia in the early days the marriage and birth registrations often lagged months behind the actual events. In some rural areas the travelling ministers only came around once a year or less often, and they then did all the outstanding marriages and baptisms at the one visit. In some registers you'll see people married on the same day as a couple of their kids are baptised, if you get a look at the microfilm copy of the original parish record you can see notes like - Married Mary Jones and Dave Smith today, they had a community witnessed wedding 2 years ago, baptised their children Mary 1, David 2 immediately after the wedding - which explains it all.

typo edit

Ernest Bywater

@sejintenej

that would be a plot


Here in Australia we have two types of plots:

1. The small bit of land in the cemetery where you bury people,

2. What the other political side are planning to do to stop your plans.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

That wasn't a compromise because she didn't change her story, instead she faced to plot hole she hadn't noticed (an unclear situation) and she plugged it.


If she had simply changed it to City Hall she wouldn't have added the "clarifying" words to explain that people get married in CIty Hall. So she wasn't filling in a plot hole. It was needed by the American editor because things are done differently in Ireland. So the change was needed for American readers, but only because she didn't change it to City Hall.

The compromise was, "You don't have to change it to City Hall, but..."

Switch Blayde

@sejintenej

Sorry; I disagree on that one. We don't use the word "lot" to refer to an undeveloped bit of land - that would be a plot


I bought a lot and then built a house on it. It was referred to as a lot.

A plot is where you get buried.

Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

Here in Australia we have two types of plots:
1. The small bit of land in the cemetery where you bury people,
2. What the other political side are planning to do to stop your plans.

At least three, surely:
1. The small bit of land in the cemetery where you bury people,
2. What the other political side are planning to do to stop your plans,
3. What others on your side of politics are planning to do to stop your plans.

Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

3. What others on your side of politics are planning to do to stop your plans.


3 is a sub-set of 2 because I don't differentiate between inter party politics and intra-party fraction politics.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

3 is a sub-set of 2 because I don't differentiate between inter party politics and intra-party fraction politics.

Q. How many political parties are there in the Parliament?
A. The same number as members of the Parliament - provided the schizophrenics are currently taking their medication. :-)

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

Here in Australia we have two types of plots:

1. The small bit of land in the cemetery where you bury people,

2. What the other political side are planning to do to stop your plans.

The same here, we rarely use "plot" to refer to a "plot of land", though that's not an incorrect usage, it's merely an uncommon one.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

At least three, surely:
1. The small bit of land in the cemetery where you bury people,
2. What the other political side are planning to do to stop your plans,
3. What others on your side of politics are planning to do to stop your plans.

I can think of four:
1. The small bit of land in the cemetery ...
2. What the other political side are planning to stop your plans,
3. What others on your political side are doing to stop your plans
4. What editors and readers keep doing to upset the basic PLOT of your story! 'D

Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

The same here, we rarely use "plot" to refer to a "plot of land", though that's not an incorrect usage, it's merely an uncommon one.


The term used in the US for legal purposes for a lot/plot of land, for instance in the title/legal description of a lot, is "parcel".

Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

provided the schizophrenics are currently taking their medication. :-)


if they were taking their meds they wouldn't be in parliament at all.

Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son


The term used in the US for legal purposes for a lot/plot of land, for instance in the title/legal description of a lot, is "parcel".


we give our parcels to the post office or other courier companies to deliver.

Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

The term used in the US for legal purposes for a lot/plot of land, for instance in the title/legal description of a lot, is "parcel".

As opposed to UPS's "lots"? 'D

Harold Wilson

@Joe Long


AS CW suggests, know what happens where your story is set and as part of it show the readers the process.


This is worthy advice, especially when crossing any kind of border. If you're writing in English, guess who your readers are going to be. If they're North American, and your setting isn't North America, do explain what's going on, please.

I recently read a story involving some "American football" that was clearly not written by an author familiar with the sport. Each individual statement was true, but was flavored strongly with non-US/CA English phrasings. My impression was that someone knew the rules (maybe the author, maybe an editor) but nobody corrected the author on phrasing. This would have been fine if, say, the protagonist was an English immigrant to the US. But the presentation is that of someone moving within the country, and so the phrasing is really jarring.

Ironically, there are similar conflicting phrases in other parts of the story - references to schooling and "land offices" and "councils" - but for whatever reason they're easier to gloss over. The more-involved details of sport really make the subtly-different word choice stand out.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Joe Long

@sejintenej

I am certain Ancestry would get that wrong - they seem to have got stuff about my grandmother and father wrong as well


In the case I cited Ancestry had the scanned image of their marriage license online. When I informed Mom, she confessed. I had long suspected it, as the marriage date they always quoted was conveniently almost exactly 9 months before I was born.

Joe Long

@Ernest Bywater

never trust anything where the source if Ancestry.com


I only use user-submitted data as suggestions. The trees at the LDS site are worse. I use Ancestry to access images of census, newspapers, military records, marriage & death records, etc. Original sources, preferably images.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Joe Long

I only use user-submitted data as suggestions.


The trees at all the sites are user submitted data and likely to be out. I will say the LDS trees do tend to be more accurate, on the whole, due to the way they help their members to check things before they add them Sadly, not all members there do it the right way all the time.

Replies:   Joe Long
Ernest Bywater

@Harold Wilson

I recently read a story involving some "American football" that was clearly not written by an author familiar with the sport. Each individual statement was true, but was flavored strongly with non-US/CA English phrasings.


I saw this, and wondered if you were talking about my story Finding Home where the main character is a new migrant to the USA and doesn't understand the game - something I did try to show in the story. You wouldn't believe how many hundreds of hours of research went in to getting the details exactly right, and then having to adjust some aspects to show the character's ignorance of the game and the rules - such as him calling the penalty flags yellow rags etc.

Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

You wouldn't believe how many hundreds of hours of research went in to getting the details exactly right

I've got a solution for that. Let's teach them Aussie Rules and cricket.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  Joe Long
Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

Let's teach them Aussie Rules and cricket.


Cricket I understand, and I've watched thousands of games of Aussie Rules, yet I still don't understand how it's played - apart from the need to jump all over and punch the opposition players.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

I've watched thousands of games of Aussie Rules, yet I still don't understand how it's played

I assumed you were into Aussie Rules when you posted a link once to 'Up There, Cazaly'.
My original code was Rugby League but I gravitated to Rugby Union. I can't understand how that's played either. I gave up trying when commentators explained its rucks and mauls by saying, 'It's okay as long as a passing pigeon cannot poop on the pill.'

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

I assumed you were into Aussie Rules when you posted a link once to 'Up There, Cazaly'.


I liked the song, and I previously read about it being used as a rally cry in both major wars. I grew up in Sydney playing soccer and cricket.

Harold Wilson

@Ernest Bywater

I saw this, and wondered if you were talking about my story Finding Home where the main character is a new migrant to the USA and doesn't understand the game


No. I also wrote:

This would have been fine if, say, the protagonist was an English immigrant to the US.


I think I've read two of your stories, and you used this approach. It works, if you change the source culture from English to Strain.

But that's my point, really. A man's got to know his limitations.

I spent some considerable time in Mexico learning Spanish. One of the things I did was watch futbol on TV. And ignoring the whole "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL" thing, there's a distinct separate vocabulary, cadence, etc. for broadcasting the sport. On reflection, this wasn't a surprise. It's true for baseball, and US football. I assume the same is true for cricket, ARfootball, chess and every other sport on TV.

Even if you don't speak Spanish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkiveV2_MLs

Or English: https://www.ispot.tv/ad/7UFD/geico-kraken-its-what-you-do

I believe it's true in every productive field of endeavor- that's "jargon." (If you don't have a jargon, it's probably not a productive field of endeavor.) But I suspect that only the people who are in those fields might notice. Compare, "We're going to need an X-ray as soon as possible!" to the more likely "X-ray, stat!"

The problem might be that "sport", and in particular "watching sport", are things that are nearly universal. We all feel like we know something about whatever sport we like to watch. And part of that is going to be "how it's shown" and "how it's played." If you write a story where USfootball players are talking in a huddle, you can get away with some liberties because fewer people have been in a huddle than have watched it on TV. Presumably, one could do the same thing with a rugby scrum. But if you start describing how the announcer speaks, you're definitely in that zone where everybody feels like they know how things work. And that's where you have to get it 100% right. Or... not: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7n-p44kKaWc

Has anyone who is a English-speaking futbol fan ever read Cotton Mather's "Playing the Game" series (http://storiesonline.net/a/Rev_Cotton_Mather)? If so, how did he do on terminology?

Dominions Son

@Harold Wilson

Even if you don't speak Spanish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkiveV2_MLs


I was a bit surprised that the first golfer in the clip didn't wrap his putter around the futbol announcer's necks. :)

Ernest Bywater

@Harold Wilson

If so, how did he do on terminology?


He did well with his use of the terminology and game descriptions.

The first video you linked to is funny. However, the way the players responded to what was going on makes me think it was done as a comedy relief segment during a practice round, because there's no way they would've put up with that during a real tournament. Also, the way they smiled made me think they were in on what was going on behind them.

The second video wouldn't play at all, and it triggered over 20 hits on my security software blocking third party scripts.

I loved the last one, it was funny.

Replies:   Harold Wilson
Joe Long

@Ernest Bywater

I will say the LDS trees do tend to be more accurate,


I use Legacy Family Tree which recently added the ability to synchronize with LDS' online trees. I had to untangle many of my ancestral lines. This work I've built up over the last 20 years and have published in my own tree at Rootsweb (now a subsidiary of Ancestry) and from where my work has made it's way into other people's trees. The LDS trees looked to be 20 years behind the times.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Joe Long

@Ross at Play

I've got a solution for that. Let's teach them Aussie Rules and cricket.


Earlier this week I saw something for the first time in my life - a group of young men, at quick glance all looking Indian or Pakistani, playing cricket on the field a block from the house where I grew up (in a small city in western Pennsylvania.) This even after I've been living here again for the past 13 years (I noticed because one guy ran into the street in front of my car to retrieve the ball, and I looked over to see one swinging a flat bat with a wicket behind him)

Ernest Bywater

@Joe Long

Legacy Family Tree


That's a good program.

Which set of LDS Family Trees were you looking at? The old PAF system hasn't been updated since the source code of the program was bought out by another company and they stopped supporting it to try and push people onto their main product. Or is it the on-line version which was recently updated?

One of the big issues I found is almost every program where there's user entry data you'll find a lot of incorrect data where the user didn't substantiate the accuracy of it first. Heck, I found one person had valid source data for one branch of my family tree, except the couple they started with were born in the same area with the same names, but were no relations to my ancestors born a year later. Thus, by starting with the wrong couple they had a whole branch of someone else's family fully substantiated linked to our family due to the one error.

I must get back into doing that, but I've no motivation while still under the court shuffle with the Gestapo.

Harold Wilson

@Ernest Bywater

The second video wouldn't play at all, and it triggered over 20 hits on my security software blocking third party scripts.


Yeah, I use NoScript and RequestPolicy, and have to manually tune them. ispot is an actual advertising-industry site: they try to hold on to ads and provide links, sort of the way imdb does, to actors, ad companies, production companies, songs, etc. So if you're looking for an ad, and can't find it on youtube, it's worth looking on ispot. But carefully. They're FIRM believers in advertising, after all... ;-)

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