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We take English for granted. Sign We spik Inglish But if we  explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly,  boxing rings are square, and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
There is no egg in eggplant or ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in  pineapple…
If teachers taught, why didn’t preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
In what language do people recite at a play, and play at a recital?
Ship by truck, and send cargo by ship?
Have noses that run and feet that smell?
Sweetmeats are candies, while sweetbreads, which  aren’t sweet, are meat.
If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth beeth?
One goose, 2 geese. So, one moose, 2 meese?
When a house burns up, it burns  down.
When the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.
English muffins were not invented in England or French fries in France.
How can ‘slim chance and a fat chance’ be the same, while  ‘ wise man and a wise guy’ are opposites?

(The above is from an email I received. I have no idea who wrote it)

Sign "Slip Carefully"This may help explain some rather odd signs one sees around the world. (Pictures are scattered throughout this post.)

But it does not explain why some educated people simply can’t seem to read.

shcool On the Christian House Sitters website we try to explain everything very carefully and simply yet I still receive some very odd questions. For example only this week someone wrote “ I am interested in registering with you guys, but will there be a guarantee that we will find a place to stay in Oxford for free at the time we want it?

Yet on our web site says:

Can You Guarantee a House Sit?

Sadly not. The list of available properties is constantly changing. New houses are added and existing properties find sitters. We are facilitator and have no idea what houses or sitters are going to become available in the future. We never know from one day to the next what is coming and what is going to be removed. For example we had a message from someone asking about a house in Florida. We wrote back saying that we did not have any. The very next day we got a house 5 minutes from Disney World available for 2 months. God is in control. We trust that He will provide the right match between owners and sitters.”

Sadly we can’t foresee the future. We do not know who is going to plan a vacation next year and if they are going to list their house with our site. Even if they do we can’t predict which house sitter they will decide to use.

Sign Entrance Only. Do not enter

What can we promise? We can promise that when you register as a home owner it will not cost you anything. That we will make your house details known to our registered sitters and that you stand a very good chance of finding a suitable sitter
We can also promise that when you register as a sitter you will be kept fully informed about every new house listed. The vast majority of our sitters find not one but two or more house sits during their membership.

If you want more details please look at our website or contact me

God bless you,



About housesitters

ABOUT Christian House Sitters Christian House Sitters is a Worldwide ministry that started in order to provide holidays for Christians and sitters for owners who needed a reliable Christian to look after their home, pets and garden. House owners do not pay anything to have their property listed. House sitters are only charged £25 per year and in return for this some enjoy numerous holidays each year. All fees from membership go to sponsor food for children at the Home of Peace Children’s Home in Kenya. This only supplies about a quarter of what is needed to feed the children so we urgently need sponsors. All funds go via our Registered Charity TLC Children’s Trust Charity Number 1156786 website N.B. Joining Christian House Sitters does NOT commit you to sponsoring a child or giving any support beyond your membership fee to these children. Although naturally if you want to support that would be greatly appreciated. We have some regular sponsors and other people who give an occasional gift. All are greatly appreciated. ABOUT RAY & MARILYN We are Marilyn & Ray White. A fun loving Christian couple who have been in Christian work for over 30 years. Marilyn was born in England but moved to Zimbabwe as a baby. At the age of 16 she moved to South Africa. Ray was born in South Africa and grew up on a farm. We met in Johannesburg and got married in 1966. Ray worked in business for many years then he worked for YfC in South Africa then went on to Bible College and Pastored a church. In 1982 we moved from South Africa to England. In addition to his theological training Ray trained in Psychology and since moving to the UK he has lectured in Psychology, counselled for the NHS and opened a Christian Counselling Centre. Marilyn is also a trained counsellor and manager. In addition to the counselling we trained Christian counsellors both in our local area and by invitation in other areas of the UK. In total over 700 people completed the training courses. Many are serving the Lord by working in or through their local churches. We also ran a secular Stress Management business. We are now semi-retired and focus our time and attention on Christian House Sitters and Ray also serves as a member of our Church Leadership Team. Ray also has an active preaching ministry and runs Christian seminars on subjects such as stress management for church groups. He has written two books. A Christian book that is a very practical workbook on Christian commitment as applied to real life. The book looks at how we can surrender ourselves more fully to God. This is looked at under the headings of Physical, Mental, Social and Spiritual commitment. The book is called Let’s Get Serious. He has also written a secular book on Stress Management called Stress Overcoming this Potential Killer. (Ray was previously Chair of the International Stress Management Association UK). News Update This book has now been released as an e-book as well A few years ago we did a 2 month House Sit in France. Whilst there we felt the Lord leading us to set up a Christian House Sitting service. Since then we have done a number of other house sits. We believe this site will benefit many Christians around the world. Feel free to contact us (BUT please no spam) NOTE: If you want a fast reply the best way to contact us is via the contact page on the Christian House Sitters website God bless you, Ray & Marilyn

One response »

  1. Splendid post. I was a technical writer for some years for the legal department of a Fortune 100 company. There were times I spent an entire day on one page, had it proofed by 3-4 very thorough proof readers, both technical and non-technical. And with all that, I would find some very educated attorney who would wonder, “WHO in the [thunder] wrote this? I can’t understand this!” But I honestly did enjoy fessing up.

    To our credit, English is not the only language with idioms — a word which I think means “so the idio-ts won’t get it”. No slam intended … we are all idiots somewhere and sometime.

    The saddest part is, I’ve studied hard to write and communicate well in English only to learn that dear Professor Higgins was really quite correct, “the Americans haven’t spoken it in years”.


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