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Questions that you always wanted to ask but were afraid to ask (Page 9)
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Waragainstsleep
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Oct 30, 2017, 12:00 AM
 
I blame Brexit.
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el chupacabra
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Oct 30, 2017, 12:22 AM
 
But it's been happening long before brexit
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Waragainstsleep
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Oct 30, 2017, 01:12 AM
 
Wasn't it doing pretty well until quite recently though? I think Brexit might be what stopped the recovery, lots of uncertainty around.
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P
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Nov 2, 2017, 11:52 AM
 
It goes up and down. The Euro launched at an exchange rate on $1.16 for €1. It then dropped at first, but rose again.10 years ago (=as far back as I can find a chart right now), it peaked at $1.60 for €1 (April 23, 2008 - it stayed there for a few months). It has been an almost continuous drop from that level, some ups and downs, but it is now at last exactly the same $1.16 that it launched at all those years ago.

So most of the drop is a correction from the dizzying heights it climbed to during the 2008 crisis of the US dollar. Some of it is probably related to the debt crisis in Greece, which never seems to completely end. Some is Brexit, I'm sure, but since Britain was never in the Euro, that effect is limited at best.

I think it is becoming more obvious to financial markets that the industrial base for the Euro is really rather small - Germany is the only really strong economy among the big countries. Spain and Italy rely heavily on parts of the country that are financially strong (Catalonia and northern Italy, respectively), France has structural issues that it doesn't seem to want to tackle, and the rest of us are smaller economies. Countries like the Netherlands or Sweden are actually doing really well right now, but we're small. The countries in central and eastern Europe are growing their economies and will be strong contributors over time, but they're not there yet.

At the same time, there are challenges ahead. The mood is very much against more integration right now, and nobody really wants to expand any further (there may be some expansions in the Balkans, but those countries are also small and financially weak), so what should the EU do?
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mindwaves  (op)
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Jan 8, 2018, 06:38 PM
 
Do hotels give extra reduced rate for tour groups?

I know hotels probably give tour groups bulk discount rates, but do they also factor in that the tours typically arrive late (around 7-8pm) and leave early (before 8am)? That would only leave the people in the tour to use the facilities for a maximum of 12 hours. That means less water being used and less electricity among other hotel amenities. I would be curious to know how much the discounted rate is.
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Spheric Harlot
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Jan 8, 2018, 07:58 PM
 
I’d assume that the hours are irrelevant. A booked room is a blocked room that isn’t making money off anybody else that night - whether booked for twelve hours or four. And apart from bathroom visits, a shower is a shower - whether at 7 a.m. or at 9 a.m.
     
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Jan 9, 2018, 12:00 PM
 
Save money by finding a classy hotel that charges by the hour.

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mindwaves  (op)
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Jan 9, 2018, 06:00 PM
 
There was on episode on Shark Tank where a person had a business which basically ran an app layer on top of hotels' own software which charged rooms by the hour. He claimed that it hasn't been done before and didn't get a deal.

Another question: I am watching some British TV shows on Youtube about being raised on benefits (known in the US as welfare, I suppose). Being born and raised in the US, I think I need subtitles for much of this program. A large part of it due to the British accent, their own cultural accent?, and the various British slangs or own cultural slangs being used. Anyone else have trouble understanding British accents?
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andi*pandi
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Jan 9, 2018, 06:04 PM
 
I can understand your basic Bond but had real trouble with Trainspotting. Scousers, also.
     
sek929
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Jan 9, 2018, 07:01 PM
 
I'm surprisingly good at the thick Scottish accent, but lately I've found it difficult to understand British TV and movies. Had to put subtitles in for Dunkirk and some episodes of Black Mirror, though usually what I'm not understanding is some form of slang or shorthand I'm not aware of and it's messing up the whole sentence in my mind.

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Spheric Harlot
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Jan 9, 2018, 07:15 PM
 
     
Waragainstsleep
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Jan 10, 2018, 12:33 AM
 
its weird, we have at least as many regional accents as you guys but in a much more confined space.

if i recall, Trainspotting was shown with subtitles in the US. Glaswegian is the only British accent I ever tend to struggle with though if you go rural enough anywhere you'll tend to find incomprehensible locals.
Trainspotting is pretty clear compared to some Glaswegian.



If there is anything particularly bothering anyone, I'd be happy to try to translate.
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mindwaves  (op)
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Jan 11, 2018, 12:05 PM
 
I've read that different accents/dialects are mainly due to geographic boundaries, such as rivers and mountains which separate people geographically. So I suppose Britain as many rivers/mountains, so they have many different and diverse accents, many of which are very difficult for me to understand.
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Waragainstsleep
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Jan 11, 2018, 08:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I've read that different accents/dialects are mainly due to geographic boundaries, such as rivers and mountains which separate people geographically. So I suppose Britain as many rivers/mountains, so they have many different and diverse accents, many of which are very difficult for me to understand.
Most accents tend to have a spectrum of sorts. They change gradually with geography. Its harder to track given how mobile we all are now but you find that sometimes suburbs or outer provinces near larger cities have softer versions of a city accent. For example you have the bouncy, rhythmic Scouse accent like the Beatles a way outside the city centre, particularly headed southish, but further inner city or north of centre the accent is quite harsh and almost phlegmy. The pitch tends to go up too.
Lancashire and Yorkshire have much in common as you go across from Manchester to Leeds. Places like Whitley Bay near Newcastle have much less pronounced Geordie accents than central Newcastle.
Somerset, Devon and Cornwall are quite similar even though parts of Cornwall still speak some preposterous old language of their own. Welsh accents are subtly different in the valleys as opposed to the cities.

Then of course you have the private school folks who had elocution lessons and speak RP. You find them mixed in everywhere.

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Waragainstsleep
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Jan 11, 2018, 08:11 PM
 
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
ghporter
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Jan 12, 2018, 12:14 PM
 
I like how Tom just slid from one (very distinct) accent to another. Like at first, his (generic, semi-Midwestern) American accent was so spot on, and he didn't miss a beat going into it.

Interesting point: Katherine Hepburn's accent was made up. She had to do that, or she would (without meaning offense) copy the accent of whomever she was talking with. This unconscious copying, combined with the way early Hollywood tried to emulate Northeastern theater, led her to use her own, unique version of the storied "Mid-Atlantic Accent."

Think about how all three "farm hands" in The Wizard of Oz sounded like they were from some part of Southern New England, and absolutely NOTHING like Kansas farm hands - though Clara Blandick (Aunt Em) and Charley Grapewin (Uncle Henry) came off quite believably as Kansans.

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andi*pandi
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Jan 12, 2018, 03:17 PM
 
kate hepburn was believeably connecticut.

Has new england annexed New York? Cuz the farm hands were from the bronx. Ok, maybe Philly.
     
subego
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Jan 12, 2018, 03:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
Interesting point: Katherine Hepburn's accent was made up. She had to do that, or she would (without meaning offense) copy the accent of whomever she was talking with. This unconscious copying, combined with the way early Hollywood tried to emulate Northeastern theater, led her to use her own, unique version of the storied "Mid-Atlantic Accent."
I start to mimic the accent of whomever I’m around... except here in Chicago, where I somehow end up with Standard Broadcast English.
     
subego
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Jan 12, 2018, 04:21 PM
 
@waragainstsleep.

I knew two sisters from England. One had a posh accent, the other sounded like Ozzy Osborne.

I assume the posh one had a “fake accent”. Does that happen often?
     
Waragainstsleep
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Jan 12, 2018, 06:20 PM
 
Probably not often. Siblings are typically educated the same way but if they both went to private school and had elocution lessons but one of them went on to live, work or marry into a more working class lifestyle then its likely she would slip back into a regional dialect (In this case Birmingham or nearby). People who aren't 'posh' tend to be a bit off sometimes with people who even sound like they might be.
I grew up in a small village and most of my friends didn't have strong local accents, though a skilled ear could pick them out but when I went to secondary school (11+), we were often called posh by kids from the local town and certain other villages. That town was 6 miles away or so from my village. Its relative I guess.
I'd like to think its different now but certainly in the 80s the class war was in full effect so being more or less posh-sounding depending who you were with was very common indeed. Of course some people can't help it.
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subego
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Jan 13, 2018, 02:41 AM
 
Well, this shows how crappy I am at distinguishing accents.

I had to ask, and they’re from Ipswich, which Google tells me means the non-posh sister had a Suffolk accent.
     
Doc HM
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Jan 13, 2018, 06:51 AM
 
Locally my old Primary school was famous for having it's own accent. Pupils who went to Oak Lodge sounded completely different to those from any other school. The "Oak Lodge" accent was a very pronounced version of a Sarf Lundon drawl. Oak Lodge itself was (at the time) in the top 15 primary schools in the entire UK yet pupils sounded like dock workers.

This was 40 years ago. It's still a good school and my sisters children now go to it. All that time later it STILL has it's own accent.
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Doc HM
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Jan 13, 2018, 06:59 AM
 
I also heard a radio show about accents many years ago that was asking how ling did it take colonists (ie Australians and Americans) to switch from using there original British accents to recognisable accents as we hear them today. Someone waas saying that surely films set in the early days of each country should show people with British not American (or Australian) accents.

Apparently it took about 10/15 years for these accents to almost fully form as a result of mixing of the various accents of the settlers. The drive not to stand out forced the accents to merge. The particular mix of starting points resulting in the different flavours of accen
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andi*pandi
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Jan 13, 2018, 09:16 AM
 
Yet I've heard that some colonized accents are more historic. Compare quebec french with france french. Quebec is like a time capsule. (then let's talk Maine/Cajun for different evolutions)
     
subego
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Jan 13, 2018, 05:14 PM
 
This is probably BS, but I’ve been told the “Appalachian accent” is surprisingly close to what they think Colonial English sounded like.
     
 
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