Dr. John Clare has perspicaciously availed readers of TPN of his worldly wisdom for some twenty years and does not merit the wave of criticism made of his recent etymological discourse.

However, I am surprised that his related experiences in the Congo did not include experimenting with the speaking of Pidgin which is used throughout Central and West Africa but especially Nigeria. In these regions words from nearly four hundred indigenous languages have been consolidated with colonial English to provide a lingua franca which enables Europeans to communicate in a friendly manner. For example a restaurateur could be told “I wan chop” which means “I want to eat” and his cook would understand “Dey tear my belle” meaning “I am extremely hungry”.

This African form of Esperanto could well be adapted for the formulation of pidgin Portuguese. However, a digital solution can be found in the adaptation of Douglas Adam`s yellow babel fish by the Google audio translator whereby buds, not fish, are inserted in the ear. In UN assembly style, thirty-six languages and ninety accents can be simultaneously (almost) translated.

I trust that this information may be of some use.

No Wahala = No problem

Roberto Cavaleiro Tomar 14 April 2024