TOTW: false cognates

For those who don't know, false cognates are two words in different languages that sound like each other, but mean really different things. The classic from my life is folks learning spanish who think they can just add a suffix and get by, like embarazada for embarrassed, when embarazada in spanish actually means pregnant.

In a conversation on anews recently I was reminded of this concept, when someone was recommending that people make their own decisions about when to stay isolated and when to be social, rather than a) having a knee jerk reaction to the state telling us to stay home, or b) thinking that what the state tells us to do is definitely the best thing to do. Staying home because of your own reasons can look like acceding to state directives, but that doesn't mean it is.

I wonder what things people here do that seem like they're obeying rules, but are actually subversive or rebellious, like, wearing clothes that make you look straight so that people don't notice you shoplifting. Or acting like a good worker so that the bosses, creepy co-workers don't realize you're sabotaging things.

And, since there are, in fact, always permeable transition states (some people are embarrassed by being pregnant), are there points when looking normal is feeding the state more than whatever-subversion-is-happening is taking away from it? Does looking normal at some point bite us in the ass more than we benefit from stealing or sabotaging or whatever? At what point does hidden resistance cease to be effective BECAUSE it's hidden? (This obviously also has significance for questions of security culture too, but that's maybe a topic for a different week.)

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I’ve pondered this before when reading “Comments on the society of the spectacle”. When all sides involved are using deception, things get confusing fast, using the example of double agents is almost enough to illustrate.

But it’s simpler than that: If your goals are clear, you’ll know whether you’re accomplishing them or not regardless of your use or lack of use of deception. Losing your north and getting lost in the game of appearances is a risk only for those living deep undercover, like mole agents, not applicable to most people. If someone thinks they’re playing a normie biding their time for some big attack, they’re some kind of delusional, at most will end in some strange mass shooting or something of the sort.

“Does looking normal at some point bite us in the ass more than we benefit from stealing or sabotaging or whatever?”

We can conceive scenarios where someone can benefit by doing both or neither.

“At what point does hidden resistance cease to be effective BECAUSE it's hidden?”

Here it gets more interesting because it hints at actions that communicate as well as achieve some other task.

It would depend what you weigh as more important: doing what you do without getting caught or trouble, or inspiring others to do the same or at least showing them that it can be done and maybe even how.

“Resistance” in many cases is a grandiose term for menial tasks. Suppressive fire reveals your position but can be used to cover others so they can move. You can be loud to make people duck or redirect attention.

Usually neither loud nor secret acts of “resistance” amount to much in the grand scale of things (Blessed is the Flame). I can’t make blanket recommendations as to what any specific person should do in their situation, not even if they should follow their whims or overthink things. What will be will be, it is what it is, amor fati, love fatty.

There is a lot of writing because of the CoronaVirus which is good. I don't read much of the emo stuff I like technical articles with data about the inability of our civilization to cope with crisis such as this but I read something every day. I have anecdotal evidence that my roommate and I may have had an early case of CV. I was taking him to an infectious disease clinic for daily infusions about a month ago. We both got sick at the same time with the same symptoms. Dry cough, a little fever, malaise, fatigue, trouble breathing and also loss of appetite and sense of taste. We were sick for weeks and his cough was so bad I almost put him in the hospital for it. We have now fully recovered and don't go to the clinic anymore. In a way I hope we did have it so that we might have some immunity. As far as individuality and being your own boss I do whatever I can get away with. Some people are more dedicated than others so I could never prescribe for anyone. I quit school in 11th grade and never went back. I have managed to have jobs and work for my family and sleep inside most of my life. This is my choice and I have suffered repression, oppression and exploitation at times but never gave up on my dreams of liberation. I always pick up the project whenever I can. Right now I dont feel bad about myself. I rode my bike 17 miles today. There were many pedestrians on the streets and not many cars. I don't think being undercover and wearing a disguise will hurt if you don't forget who you are and make exceptions for your own personal rebellion. But if you never transgress and dont take your comfort then it could lead to depression so it helps to have some secrets, opacity and anonymity. It's what they don't know that kills them.

One good thing that came from being sick is we both lost about 10 or 15 pounds and hopefully we won't be replacing them. The new security regime isn't conducive to overindulgence so I'm working on a makeover. Stay tuned.

We nihilists don't need disguises because our whole existence is nothingness.

As I used to say on my TV program; what kind of wok can't you cook on?

Of course, the question would confuse the viewers of my television program, but the answer is obvious.

It's rare for there to be a false friend between Cantonese or Mandarin aka Chinese and English because Chinese and English are very different languages and belong to different language groups and often sound very different. By the way, the TOTW definition for a false cognate is wrong. A "false friend" is what you're looking for. It's two words in different languages that sound the same but have different meanings. A false cognate is similar, but the words have different etymologies. A cognate is words related in origin that descended from the same root, the etymology. Capiche?

Perhaps the TOTW could have been; things are not always the way they appear

are you referring to homophones,

you fucking pedant?

: )

it seems you are misremembering, troll.

it’s not Zhen Wenda who was known for the wok puns:

“He is not related to Chinese Canadian chef Stephen Yan of the CBC Television series Wok with Yan, though Martin was an employee and had worked for Stephen Yan in the 1980s as demonstrator for Stephen's products.“

but Stephen Yan

in his program Wok with Yan

a very interesting layer of meaning!

simple mistake? false cognate? mandela effect? things are not always the way they appear? shitty troll?

you were unskillfully impersonating a (con)fusion of two people, yet succeeded in you goal of being annoying by any other term

It is not surprising that neither of you, pedant and troll have never seen my television program on PBS. In the USA, PBS is a public broadcasting service, hence its acronym. Now do not get confused. The name for PBS is a wee-bit misleading. I don't know if you can get PBS in your area. This can be why you have never seen my television program.

I appreciate you discovered that Stephan Yan has a similar program in Canada and his show has a similar name as mine. You are an average detective, but not good. Just average. A good detective would not use wikipedia to base their entire investigation and conclusion on. Are you surprised Stephan Yan and I are not related? You come off that way. Let me tell you some advice. In life, you will often discover people with the same name or pseudonym are not always related with each other. A lot of people understand that. There was no reason to quote that Stephan Yan and I aren't related. Further, you will learn that just because Stephan Yan and I are Asian, enjoy sharing the culinary arts with the world and our name/pseudonym are similar, it doesn't mean only one of us can use puns. It's common for different people to use the same puns.

The romanization of Cantonese, Mandarin or any logogram leads to confusion for many. Back to false friends. False friends are words in different languages that either spelled similar or sound similar but have entirely different meanings. I see the trouble you are having. A homophone is similar to a false friend. A homophone is a word in one language that sounds the same as another word in the same language, but have different meanings. Homophones can contain puns. Homophone examples: poor and pour, their and there, meat and meet. That should help you learn about homophones and false friends. It can be difficult to learn about homophones and false friends, but if Yan can, you can too.

Postscript: The word "wok" isn't an English word, but a romanized Cantonese word. Romanized is converting a different writing system into using the Latin alphabet. The "Western world" languages use the Latin alphabet and the most widely used writing system in the world. Learning this will help you immensly. Like when you're confused on whether a word in English, that sounds or spelled the same as "wok" but has a different meaning, is a homophone or not.

A totw based on the romanization of different writing systems could an interesting topic.

"A totw based on the romanization of different writing systems could an interesting topic."


zw you come off as a pompous ass.

One day, where I live, the gov's response to you-know-what was 'carry on as normal', and people were up in arms; the next day, the gov's response was the opposite - 'stay home' - and people, the same people, were up in arms again. What happened? Did people mistake embarrassed for pregnant?

Those wild donkey-related horses in Africa called asses, or wild asses, everytime they are mentioned in an animal documentary, I think its DAMN LAZY AND UNIMAGINATIVE OF THOSE ANAL RETENTIVE BIOLOGY ACADEMICS SITTING IN THEIR IVORY TOWERS LEAVING THIS ANIMAL WITH SUCH A SEXIST AND INSULTING NAME.
Why not just call them grey zebras.

Yeah, I see your point, if I was to say ---- "Hey I wanna get me some African wild ass." and you weren't dressed in a safari suit and carrying a tranquilizer gun, you'd be a racist sexist lowlife.

The writers of the article explain what they are, but then goes on to talk about things that have nothing to do with false/real cognates.

"I wonder what things people here do that seem like they're obeying rules, but are actually subversive or rebellious, like, wearing clothes that make you look straight so that people don't notice you shoplifting. Or acting like a good worker so that the bosses, creepy co-workers don't realize you're sabotaging things."

this just kinda exposes the lack of importance of determining whether someone is "really obeying the rules" or "is doing something rebellious", because what good is rebellion if it's not enjoyable and/or practical. What good is obeying the rules unless it's enjoyable, practical, or prevents something really shitty from happening to you?

I've always passed as normal because I never viewed subcultures or fashion choices as particularly subversive. I think it does make it easier to get away with things unnoticed. It also helps to generalize revolt and make it more accessible to people that don't belong to a scene.

JZ whinging again about people using 'anon' on ANews because, well, he's got fuck all else on his plate I guess. So, John, please read: or listen to it being read to you by Cory as you sip your cocoa, at:

This probably won't satisfy you John because not much does but I least I tried.

When you're as much of a credible threat to the social order as Wolfi, you better use a nom de plume!

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