I was wondering about this expression, "like hell".
Is it acceptable to be used in a casual lady to lady conversation? I feel like it's graceless, still I hear it too frequently!
In BrE, I don't think you will find many people that think you should speak in one way to a man, but in a more delicate way to a woman. Some conversation topics might not be entirely appropriate for one gender or another, but that's more to do with their interest in the topic, not the actual words used.
There are very few people who find "hell" a very offensive word these days. However, if you're around someone who does, male or female, then do your best to avoid it.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.
NOT A TEACHER
(1) I most respectfully suggest that you not use this word.
(2) I suggest that you keep this word in your vocabulary so that you can use it
only in very special circumstances. If you use this word all the time, people
will soon not pay attention to that word. But if you usually do not use it and then
one day you do use it, people will be shocked. You will really get their attention.
Last edited by TheParser; 06-Dec-2011 at 21:40.
This is a cultural question more than a language question. The answer is, it's acceptable in some cultures, but not in others.
Some ladies say that they want to be treated like men, but in my opinion they really do not.I am afraid that many of the American and British females I know would feel offended and patronised by that attitude, particularly the words I have coloured blue. Most people I know (male and female) expect to be believed, not 'interpreted'.
Actually, it differs from one culture to another. Once my teacher who was student in America, was sitting at the bus, he saw a women ''elderly'' standing up, to his mind he thought that it is politely to let his seat to that women. So, he told her that she could have his seat, but unfortunately she misinterpreted him and got angry.
In Eastern culture, it is considered as a polite gesture and a good manner,a way of showing respect... (giving up your seat to a girl or a women, letting her go first through the door etc, giving her the priority in various social situations) And this expression "Ladies first" "les femmes d'abord" is heard many times.
But it remains a matter of culture.
Sorry if this a bit out of topic.
[QUOTE=symaa;831324] Once my teacher who was student in America, was sitting at the bus, he saw a women ''elderly'' standing up, to his mind he thought that it is politely to let his seat to that women. So, he told her that she could have his seat, but unfortunately she misinterpreted him and got angry.
NOT A TEACHER
(1) How strange! I do not have a car, so I either walk or take the bus.
(2) From my experience, female senior citizens very much appreciate such gestures on the part of men.
(3) In fact, some expect it. I once saw a female senior citizen walk up to two men who were in their twenties and tell them with her hand gesture to vacate their seats for her. They complied without saying anything.
(4) Of course, I shall not name it, but I read that in a certain country famous for
supposedly having respect for older people (such as I), many of the youth there no longer honor that tradition. The government, I hear, is trying to teach the youth better manners.