Silliest thread ever

Ok ok ok, I know this is a bit out of context here. This is nothing related to nature in general but it is a question that will help me anytime I’m writing a new thread or post, and it will give me much more confidence when writing or typing. My question is: How good is my English? I decided to ask you this because I’ve always thought for some reason my grammar and spelling are bad, and at first I ignored that thought, but then it became a desperately burning question. I now don’t know if there is a misspelled word or a grammar mistake when I write, and I don’t know if I’m expressing right or if you are understanding what I’m saying. So I finally decided the best way to figure it out was asking the forum itself. You’ve seen my posts and threads before, so I would really appreciate your votes and opinions.

      • An analphabetic person speaks better than you.
      • Your English is, meh, pretty bad, you’re definitely not a native. Take some English classes.
      • You’re just a native with bad grammar.
      • You’re just a non native with a decent English.
      • You’re a non native with a surprisingly good (not perfect) English.
      • You’re an ‘‘Ivory billed woodpecker’’.

0 voters


I suspect a “native [English speaker] with perfect grammar” is about as rare as an Ivory-billed Woodpecker. If you find one, let me know, I’ll be there with my camera.


Ok so I edited the voting poll…

SO I think you have to vote again (if you voted).

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I don´t really get why this is so important to you? I think you know yourself that your english is well enough to converse about anything you would like to converse about (say me as non-native speaker, knowing the same thing about my own english-level). What´s the problem if it was not perfect? It´s a foreign language for you, noone will expect it to be and it doesn´t have to be I think. … no need to be anxious about that


It’s not always like that, every time I post something I rewrite it again and again, or try to check if certain word fitted there, because I am not sure if I always express correctly and clearly what I want to say.


Ha, and I often realize after posting that I just produced a “word salad” (as we would call mixed up letters in German) because I just wanted to get rid of what I wanted to state as fast as possible and move on… :-D … (sometimes I go back in there and correct, but often enough I don´t)


See what I mean?

I’m a native speaker, your grammar and spelling is better than mine.


I wasn’t expecting that.

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I have a friend who is a German English teacher. I am often consulted by her to confirm if something her students have written is unidiomatic, or problematic in any other way, and I’ve often proofread academic work by international friends. I can’t say I can remember your posts elsewhere well enough to judge, so I’ll just say that your original post here does not give you away as a non-native speaker at all.

In your post at 2107 you omitted the indefinite article before ‘certain’. How picky is that? That could easily be a typo by a native speaker, and doesn’t give you away. I wouldn’t know you weren’t English if you hadn’t said.


Your grammar and spelling are just as perfect as any native speaker’s is. Sure, there are times when you have rewrite sentences or wonder if it makes sense, but that’s also true with any native speaker’s grammar; myself included. Just keep doing what you’re doing and don’t stress too much about it :smiley:


Do you have a link to that post?

We also use the phrase ‘word salad’ in English. Perhaps it’s borrowed from German - like ‘earworm’!


I’ve added it into my comment as a quote.

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What?? I still don’t even understand that ‘‘article’’ I omitted :open_mouth:.

:-) “A certain word”


There hasn’t been an instance where I haven’t understood what you were trying to say. Any mistake you’ve made has mostly been small, not enough to misrepresent your message. It’s not like native speakers never make mistakes, I’ve used “with” in places where I meant to wright “this” and I’ve been speaking English my entire life (since I first learned to speak that is).

To me, your writing is as good as any native speaker on this site.


I wouldn’t call it a typo from a native speaker either, looking at how such people write/speak, it shows that actual living English exists kinda out of its rules, like, how often people use Past Perfect where it’s needed? English is pretty simplified in a casual talk.


You seem to write English better than some presumed native speakers of English. Better than I do on a bad day. You don’t need to worry about it.


You have a good point - especially in writing. I think in speech most native speakers will use a Past Perfect instinctively correctly most of the time (even if swallowed up by apostrophes) without knowing what a Past Perfect is.

People from different parts of the world sometimes make characteristic mistakes based on how their own first language functions - this is true of native speakers too. But it is difficult for a non-native speaker to make the same sort of mistake that would of been characteristic of a native speaker. (See what I did there ;-) ?) But sometimes you get lucky!

I proofread my own thesis six times, and others helped with individual sections. There are still mistakes.