-Carlos P Romulo, President of UN, Diplomat, Aide-de-Camp to Gen MacArthur
When the Americans took over, they did what they do best: infrastructure! The Americans built schools, government buildings and institutions. While doing this they established the English language as the mode of instruction.
The English that was introduced to the Philippines was an American post-Victorian military variety of English. As English evolved in the US, it has also evolved in the Philippines. In the Philippines, most classes in High Schools and Universities are conducted in English, with a bit of Tagalog. To hear English spoken in the Philippines is quite different for native American ears, but it is truly English, albeit a Philippine version. One should never correct a Filipino speaking English; it would be like a Briton correcting an American. Some words from the Philippines have entered American usage. One such word is boondocks. Most Americans may think that this a native American word for remote place, but in fact comes from the Tagalog word bundok, which means mountain.
Here is a quick list of Philippine English Words:
Aircon: For A/C or airconditioner
Already: Used very frequently in the Philippines. In Tagalog, Na = Already. Commonly used: Hali ka na ( come here, already). Let's go out to eat, already...
Ba: a verbal question mark from Tagalog..."going to the store ba?
Barbecue: What we call a kebab in the USA. A Filipino barbecue is meat on a stick.
Bananacue: A banana ( or Saba/Plantain) on a stick. Usually sold on the street.
Brownout: temporary blackout.
Carnap: To steal an automobile.
Course: in University, your major.
Chit: Restaurant bill.
Comfort Room/CR: bathroom.
Commuter: Someone who takes a bus, Jeepney, or LRT/MRT (railways). Not a person who drives
Dirty Ice Cream: Sold from street vendors, from the street hence, dirt. Usually sold on a hamburger bun.
Dirty Kitchen: where the food is prepared, not really dirty, but usually on the back side of the house where the housekeepers would live.
Eat-all-you-can: All you can eat.
Every now and then: Often. I go to the gym, every now and then (i.e., I often go to the gym)Gets: Understands..."I gets the joke"
Go/get down: To "get off " as in get off the jeepney.Green Jokes: What we would call "dirty jokes"
Jeepney: A Philippine hybrid. Leftover US military Jeeps used for transportation. Probably fused with a jitney (small bus), hence Jeepney.
Ma'am: Polite form for Miss or Mrs. This form has virtually disappeared from the USA.
Merienda: From the Spanish, meaning small meal mid afternoon/snack.
Officemate: Co-worker.Po: This has real no meaning in English, but a sign of respect. "Good Morning Po" Used after words, from Tagalog. Magandang Umaga Po, good morning (with respect).
Promo/Promotion: Special, as in Hamburger/Fries Promo, 50 pesos.
Remembrance: A souvenir, probably Spanish is origin, Recuerdo which means remembrance and souvenir.
Rotunda/Rotonda: Roundabout, Rotary, Traffic circle.
Rubber Shoes: Sneakers, Tennis Shoes, running shoes.
Slang: What Filipinos refer to as an accent.
Slippers: Flip Flops, akin to sandles.
Take Home: for "take out" in the USA or "take away" in the UK.
Traffic: In the Philippines traffic is a "traffic jam", noun. In north America its a verb, traffic.
Tricycle: a public for hire motorcycle with a sidecar.
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