I’ll tell it to you straight —

Did you realise that rectify, rectangle, direction, correct, etc – are all related?

The penny dropped for me when as a first year medical student, in an anatomy lecture, I heard that the word rectum signifies the straight shape of that part of the bowel.

Had to be told about the origin of the word Ukraine as the borderlands – and not quite sure I buy it.

Hear vs listen

I noticed new Samaritans posters today at a train station:
hear vs listen samaritans campaign
samaritans campaign hear vs listen

A general stickler and former editor, I immediately caught on to the peculiar language.

To me, listening just means perceiving sound, albeit attentively. Hearing means taking it in. And, hearing = listening + understanding.

I don’t think the dictionaries (Oxford) agree with me:

hear

hɪə/
verb
perceive with the ear the sound made by (someone or something)

 

listen

ˈlɪs(ə)n/
verb

give one’s attention to a sound

My one argument is that the verb listen can be used in the continuous, whereas hear is more perfect:

“I hear you”

means I understand the emotion you are trying to convey – in millennial English.

 

“I am listening to you”

means I will take in all these sounds you make, but there is no guarantee it will make sense to me.

Thoughts?
You may listen to Linkin Park, but then you hear the news…
I guess the reason it registered on my radar was the poor Chester Bennington. Another high profile suicide, another wave of suicides that will follow. Take care of yourself.