Greek to you, Chinese to me

Strange Maps had a lovely map of mutual incomprehension among languages last week: Greek To Me. It’s reminiscent of the old X-is-the-new-Y diagram I wrote about a while back.

Read the commentary under the map. There’s some good stuff in there. Most poignant to me is the Esperanto taunt Estas Volapuk al mi! (“It’s Volapük to me!”). Volapük is another made-up language, and it’s so uncool that even the Esperanto speakers make fun of it. Man, if you can’t sit at the same lunch table with the Esperanto speakers, you are one sad wanker.

9 thoughts on “Greek to you, Chinese to me”

  1. Funny you should mention that old chestnut “X is the new Y.” I saw this just today on “For many during a deepening recession, conspicuous consumption is out and frugality is the new black.”

  2. My question is: whereas we all know “Z is the new black” is the old “X is the new Y”, is there a new specific Y?

    I’m just waiting for a new replacement metaphor to take over, so that we can say “{new replacement metaphor}” is the new “X is the new Y”.

    Yours sincerely etc.

  3. Oh, this is my favorite part… now the giant computer in the secret lair underneath the volcano starts to stutter and spew smoke. When the magnetic tapes start spinning really fast, it’s time to clear out.

    COMPUTER: Black is the new… New is the old… Attempting to process… Attempting to process…

  4. I think that was the climax of an original Star Trek episode:
    Kirk: Spock always lies.
    Spock: And right now, I am lying.
    At which point smoke comes out of the evil robot’s ears.

  5. “Man, if you can’t sit at the same lunch table with the Esperanto speakers, you are one sad wanker”
    – – My vote for Ned quote of the year so far. That’s the one to beat.

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