Category Archives: trivia

#GrammarTrivia: “can’t help”

DYK? Istilah “can’t help” digunakan jika kita tidak bisa berhenti atau mencegah diri kita untuk melakukan sesuatu.

  • Example: Sorry I broke your cup – I couldn’t help it.

“Can’t help” biasa diikuti dengan “gerunds (V+ing)” atau “but + V” tetapi keduanya memiliki arti yang sama.

  • Example: I can’t help wondering what I should do next. I can’t help but wonder what I should do next.

Compiled by @ChatrineYK at  on September 1, 2011


#GrammarTrivia: “How do you do?” vs “How are you?”

DYK? Apa perbedaan antara “How do you do?” dan “How are you?”?

“How do you do?” is not a question. It is another very formal way of saying “Hello.”. It is also very British.

We only really use “How do you do?” the first time we meet someone.

The correct responses of “How do you do?” are “Pleased to meet you.” or “How do you do.” or just “Hello.”

What about “How are you?”?

“How are you?” is a question, but the person asking it does not really want to know the truth about your condition.

A polite response of “How are you?” is “I’m fine, thanks. And you?”

Compiled by @ChatrineYK at  on August 18, 2011

#EngTrivia: weird English words

We know that English is a wonderful language. However, there are some weird English words that come from many other languages.

Have you ever heard of ‘erinaceous’? It means like a hedgehog.

Another word is ‘floccinaucinihilipilification’. It means estimation that something is valueless.

How about ‘selcouth’? It means unfamiliar, rare, strange, wonderful. Example: The List Universe is such a selcouth website!

We all know that the day before yesterday is ‘kemarin lusa’ in Indonesian. There is also one word for this sentence in English. It is ‘nudiustertian’.

There’s also ‘mungo’. Mungo is a dumpster diver – one who extracts valuable things from trash.

And last but not least, you can call a weak or foolish person ‘pronk’.

Compiled by at on August 20, 2011

#EngTrivia: English fun facts (1)

  1. ‘Rhythm’ is the longest English word without a vowel.
  2. The word ‘queue’ is the only word in English language that is still pronounced the same way when the last 4 letters are removed. 
  3. There are only 4 English words in common use ending in ‘-dous.’ They are hazardous, horrendous, stupendous, and tremendous. 
  4. ‘Underground’ is the only word in the English language that begins and ends with the letters ‘und.’
  5. Only two English words in current use end in ‘-gry.’ They are ‘angry’ and ‘hungry.’
  6. Of all the words in the English language, the word ‘set’ has the most definitions. 
  7. There are more than 125 English dialects worldwide: Each dialect uses English in its own way, from pronunciation to construction.


Compiled and written by @ChatrineYK at  on Tuesday, August 16, 2011


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#EngTrivia: Same word, different meanings in UK and US

The differences between British and American English are somehow interesting. A word can have different meanings. Here are some of the words that we found pretty funny.

  1. Bogey. Meaning:
    • In UK: dried nasal mucus.
    • In US: an unidentified aircraft, often assumed to be that of an enemy.
  2. Entrée. Meaning:
    • In UK: starter of a meal.
    • In US: main course of a meal.
  3. Fall. Meaning:
    • In UK: to become pregnant.
    • In US: autumn.
  4. First floor (of a building). Meaning:
    • In UK: the floor above ground level.
    • In US: the floor at ground level (sometimes).
  5. Intern. Meaning:
    • In UK: replacement.
    • In US: one temporarily employed for practical training.
  6. Redcap. Meaning:
    • In UK: a military police officer.
    • In US: a baggage porter (as at a train station).
  7. Through (time). Meaning:
    • In UK: for a period of time, during.
    • In US: up to, until.
  8. Mate. Meaning:
    • In UK: friend.
    • In US: spouse or partner.


Compiled and written by at on Friday, August 12, 2011

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#GrammarTrivia: the passive voice

In English, the active voice is more common than the passive voice, although the passive voice is acceptable and even preferred at times.

Here are the considerations on when we can use the passive voice in English:

  1. The passive voice is preferred when the actor is unknown or unimportant. e.g. “That building was built in 1894.” From this example we can see that people who built the building are unimportant and not mentioned. That is why the passive voice is preferred.
  2. The passive voice is often used when discussing history. e.g. “The war was fought over gold.”
  3. Remember to use the active voice when the actor is more important than the action. e.g. “The children ate spaghetti for dinner.”
  4. Avoid using active and passive in the same sentence if possible. e.g. “The flowers were planted and the trees were trimmed.”
  5. Use one verb instead of two when possible. e.g. “Lia enjoys good food and music.” (Not: Lia enjoys good food and music is also enjoyed by her.)

Maybe some of the following examples can help us to understand more about the use of the passive voice:

  • AWKWARD: Workers built the pyramids about 5.000 years ago.
  • BETTER: The pyramids were built about 5.000 years ago.
  • AWKWARD: The house was bought by my parents in 1970.
  • BETTER: My parents bought the house in 1970.
  • AWKWARD: If you studied more, your test could be easily passed.
  • BETTER: If you studied more, you could easily pass your test.
  • AWKWARD: The light was turned on by me as I entered my bedroom.
  • BETTER: I turned on the light as I entered my bedroom.
  • AWKWARD: Bob plays the piano and the guitar is played by him also.
  • BETTER: Bob plays piano and the guitar.

Compiled and written by @ChatrineYKat on August 11, 2011

#GrammarTrivia: clause vs sentence

DYK? A clause is the main structure of which a sentence is built.

A sentence contains of at least one main clause. It may also contain subordinate clause.

  • A clause with 2 elements: “Annie (subject) cried (verb).”
  • A clause with 3 elements: “I (subject) like (verb) pizza (object).”

A simple sentence is a sentence that has only one main clause. Example: “I like pizza.”

A complex sentence is made by joining clauses together by either subordination or coordination or both. Example: “I like pizza (main clause), but she doesn’t like it (subordinate clause).”

The simplest way to differentiate a sentence with a clause is through punctuation. A sentence always ends with (.) (?) (!).

Compiled and written by August 3, 2011

#GrammarTrivia: “actually”

DYK? Kata “actually” memiliki arti yang sama dengan “in fact”/ “in reality” (pada kenyataannya). Digunakan untuk

  1. menegaskan sesuatu.
  2. tidak menyetujui sesuatu.

Kata “actually” artinya tidak sama dengan “now”/ “at present” (saat ini).

1) “actually” digunakan untuk menekankan sesuatu, ketika kita ingin mengungkapkan fakta yang mengejutkan. Digunakan di tengah kalimat. Contoh:

  1. “There is this very beautiful girl next door. You can actually see her from across the street.”
  2. “That company’s revenue grows bigger every year. The owner actually does all the jobs himself.”

2) “actually” digunakan untuk tidak menyetujui sesuatu. Jika kita pikir yang dikatakan atau dilakukan seseorang salah, kita bisa mengoreksinya dengan “actually”. Untuk fungsi yang ke-2, “actually” digunakan di awal atau akhir kalimat. Contoh:

  1. “People say love brings happiness. Actually it’s the other way around.”
  2. “Thanks for helping me with my school assignment. | Well, it wasn’t me. It was Andy who helped you, actually.”

Compiled and written by @EnglishTips4U on July 17, 2011

#GrammarTrivia: Uncountable noun

“Countable noun” memiliki bentuk singular (tunggal) dan plural (jamak), sementara “uncountable noun” memiliki bentuk singular saja.

Kebanyakan noun (kata benda) termasuk dalam “countable noun”.


  • “a baby” (bentuk singular) – “babies” (bentuk jamak).

uncountable noun” merujuk pada benda yang tak bisa dihitung. Benda yang termasuk dalam kategori ini antara lain zat, cairan, gas, ide abstrak.


  • (zat) paper, gold, rock;
  • (benda cair) water, oil;
  • (gas) smoke, oxygen;
  • (ide abstrak) music, money.

Compiled and written by @EnglishTips4U for@EnglishTips4U on Tuesday, July 12, 2011



#GrammarTrivia: decimal numbers

Apa kamu tahu dalam Bahasa Inggris, bilangan desimal ditulis menggunakandecimal point yang berupa tanda (.) titik, bukan (,) koma.

  • Contoh:
    • 7.5 = seven point five (dalam Bahasa Indonesia: tujuh koma lima).
    • 1.8 = one point eight.
    • 6.29 = six point two nine.

Compiled and written by @ for @ on Firday, July 8, 2011



#GrammarTrivia: “ought to”

DYK? “ought to” adalah “modal auxiliary” yang memiliki arti yang sama dengan “should” (harus/ seharusnya).

Penggunaan “ought to” tidak umum, dan terutama sekali sangat jarang digunakan di Amerika Serikat.

Kita bisa mengganti “ought to” dengan kata “should” tanpa mengubah artinya. Bentuk negatifnya adalah “ought not to” atau “oughtn’t to“.

Bentuk “ought to” tidak pernah berubah walaupun menggunakan subyek yang berbeda dalam kalimat. Misal, tidak ada penambahan huruf ‘s’.

  • Contoh kalimat positif: “You ought to go to school.
  • Contoh kalimat negatif: “She oughtn’t to come late to class.

Compiled and written by @ on July 4, 2011

#EngTrivia: Verbs to describe animal sound

Apakah kalian tahu bagaimana suara hewan disebut dalam bahasa Inggris? Seperti halnya dalam bahasa Indonesia kita punya kambing yang mengembik atau kucing yang mengeong, berikut beberapa verb atau kata kerja yang digunakan untuk mendeskripsikan suara hewan (penulisan nama hewan dalam bentuk plural).

  1. Bats (kelelawar) = screech.
  2. Bears (beruang) = growl (suaranya berbunyi “Grrr”).
  3. Bees (lebah) = hum, buzz.
  4. Birds (burung) = chirrup, chirp, twitter, tweet, sing.
  5. Cats (kucing) = mew, purr, meow, hiss.
  6. Chickens (ayam) = cluck.
  7. Cows (sapi) = moo.
  8. Crickets (jangkrik) = chirp, creak.
  9. Dogs (anjing) = bark, woof.
  10. Dolphins (lumba-lumba) = click.
  11. Doves (merpati) = coo.
  12. Ducks (bebek) = quack.
  13. Elephants (gajah) = trumpet.
  14. Flies (lalat) = buzz, hum.
  15. Goats (kambing) = bleat, baa.
  16. Horses (kuda) = clop, neigh, snort, whinny.
  17. Lions (singa) = roar, growl.
  18. Mice (tikus) = squeak, squeal.
  19. Monkeys (monyet) = chatter, gibber, whoop.
  20. Mosquitoes (nyamuk) = whine.
  21. Owls (burung hantu) = hoot, scream, screech, shriek.
  22. Pigs (babi) = oink, snort, grunt, squeal.
  23. Rabbits (kelinci) = squeak, drum.
  24. Sharks (hiu) = hom hom.
  25. Turkey (kalkun) = gobble.

Nah, jadi paham kan kenapa namanya dan kenapa lambangnya burung? Hehehe…


Compiled and written by  for  on Wednesday, June 29, 2011

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