Tuesday, October 31, 2006


In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

Word for the day is: Penitent

adjective feeling or showing sorrow and regret for having done wrong

e.g. Korea and China share the same position that a summit meeting of the three countries is meaningless unless Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi shows more penitent attitudes toward Japan’s past atrocities.

Allah SWT knows best.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Yam bean.

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

Yam bean is sengkuang.

Allah SWT knows best.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Be that as it may

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

Zidane plays football. Zidane can play football.

Notice that when can is used in the sentence, the verb play loses it s? Can is a verb which I think is called a modal verb.

Other verbs, when used in conjuction with a modal verb, retain its original form. Hence the absence of s in this sentence: He can play football.

Other modal verbs are shall, will, must and may.


Shall we go visit them today?
Will they be having rendang?
Must we help?
May it be then.

Allah SWT knows best.

Have a pleasant Eidulfitri and may Allah accept(worship and good deeds) from you and us.


Thursday, October 05, 2006

Close, but no cigar.

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

One of the many usages of the word close is to convey the sense of distance between two objects. Another meaning would be to bring two things together to close an opening. ie. Please close the door.

When you close a door, would you say the door is closed or the door is close?

I would say the door is closed. The door may be close to the window but here I would like to emphasise on the fact that you closed the door hence I would say the door is closed.

If you look up in a dictionary, you would find close to be listed as both a verb and an adjective.

Close as a verb is defined as an act of bringing two things together to close an opening while close as an adjective is defined as a short distance between two objects.
(These are my definitions. To get proper definitions go look up in a dictionary.)

So close as an adjective can happily(and properly) be used with the verb 'to be'.
Example: The door is close to the window.

But how do you use the verb as an adjective?

Whenever a verb, when used as an adjective, is used in conjuction with the verb 'to be' it has to be used in its perfect form.


Close(present), closed(past), closed(perfect)
Present: Please close the door.
Past: He closed the door.
Perfect: He hasn't closed the door yet.
Verb as an adjective: The door is closed.

graduate, graduated, graduated.
Present: (I can't think of an example.)
Past: I graduated from a school here. I think that will be my only graduation in my life.
Perfect: Unlike my peers, I haven't graduated.
Verb as an adjective: (Not used. 'I is/graduated' is not proper English. Use 'I graduated' instead.)

open, opened, opened
Present: Open the door please.
Past: He opened the door.
Perfect: He hasn't opened the door.
Verb as an adjective: (Not used because open is an adjective. 'The door is open' is correct because open is an adjective.)

Confusing? Well as a summary,

'The door is close' is wrong. 'The door is closed' is correct.
'The door is open' is correct. 'The door is opened' is not used.

Have a pleasant Ramadhan.

Allah SWT knows best.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

On abbreviations

In the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful,

This is not an entry about English but rather an entry about the usage of abbreviations in writing.

Abbreviations are used in writing because everyone, truth be told, is lazy. Hence we like to shorten things up.

Be aware that I am not entirely against the usage of abbreviations in writing but they are times when I wish people would stop using it. At least until everyone knows how to use it properly.

It really saddens me whenever a writer uses abbreviations without even trying to mention what the seemingly unpronounceable word actually means.

For example:
The NBA is trying to implement a new transfer system. NBA spokesman, John Every, declined to comment further on the new transfer system rumoured to be favouring teams that suck.
So what is NBA? I do not have a clue. It could be lots of things. It could be National Bakers Association or even Nudist Basking Aphrodites.

That is the problem with abbreviations. If the writer did not write what it actually stands for, people would never know what it is.

The writer could have always written it like this:
The National Basketball Association(NBA) is trying to implement a new transfer system. NBA spokesman, John Every, ....
See how clear it turned out this time? Now we know it is the National Basketball Association and not some National Bakers Association.

So the next time you want to use abbreviations, write a little bit extra to inform the readers what it actually stands for.

Allah knows best.
Disclaimer: I am neither an English native speaker nor a qualified English teacher.