in vain

Gusting and grey today.

Yesterday tutoring English I invoked in vain the phraseI’ve heard multiple Syrians use it fluently. Turns out they have an equivalent in Arabic.

So something that might be a bit high level for a native English speaker, or even arcane, is a natural fit for an Arabic speaker coming to English. I suppose not unlike edifice for a Spanish speaker (edificio) or capricious for an Italian (capriccioso). These are words many English speakers don’t use.

I think I was trying to make a point about how in English there will be multiple solutions to a writing problem, but I won’t always know the one most intuitive or straightforward one to an Arabic-first-language eye. The invocation itself may have been in vain


The phrase also well describes my efforts at writing in this space. And of course it comes up all the time in discussing Syria and people’s efforts to help Syrians.

3 thoughts on “in vain

    1. You are a brave dude just hanging about in the Middle East-ish climes GC.Do you play often nowdays or has your ‘calling’ ended up taking most of your time? Great to hear a true reflection of what is happening over there,certainly MSM won’t furnish a true depiction,just one that suits Soros and his Crew of Bandaleros. Best to you,and keep your head down sir.


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