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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Calling Saya???

As I was leisurely driving and listening to this one particular BM language radio station I heard one of the DJ nonchalantly said, "Okay, sila calling saya di 03-XXXXXXX"

Now the first time I heard it I didn't think much of it. It was probably just a fun way to play with slang. Then I heard it again a few more times after that. Same DJ, same radio station. Still, I didn't think much of it. I mean, who actually listens to exactly what the DJ is babbling about while wrestling with the traffics in Malaysia. right?

Until yesterday, my bro-in-law asked me, "Betul ke dia guna 'calling saya' tu? Ada ke perkataan tu?" (Is he using the word 'calling saya correctly? Does the word exist?) 

Without missing a beat I answered "Obviously tak." (Obviously no) 

but still this exchange didn't bother me much

Then my bro-in-law asked in Bahasa which if translated would sound something like this "Shouldn't a DJ use the correct phrase? I mean people are listening and making an example out of their speech right? What if the ones who is learning, learn the wrong way to use the language?"

Me and my sister (his wife) started a whole bunch of retort ranging from "Who learns language through radio" to "You have to look at which kind of radio station" and to backing up the DJ saying he probably was just saying it for the hell of it. The first thought that came into our minds at that time was that my bro-in-law was just being anal about nothing.

But, after the exchange, it occurs to me, what he says is not wrong at all. I mean in the context of using "Calling Saya" that was used by the DJ, everything about that two words is wrong in any of the language usage, and the structure of the word.

Please don't get me wrong, I am not trying to be a Grammar Nazi here. I can't really do that coz my grammar is all over the place most of the time too. But, upon having this blatantly wrong usage of the language, my inner GN power got a little too excited and is coming out showing its tail juuust a little bit.

First of all, if we substitute the word 'Saya' to it's equivalent English word 'Me', the usage of "Calling Me" is only applicable in the instance where the word is addressing to a continuous act whether it is past, future or present and there is also the rules that it comes with had been, will be, has been, etc.

Second, if we substitute the word "Calling" to it's equivalent BM word "Sedang Menelefon", the usage of "Calling Saya" would have made even less sense. Why would someone say " Sila Sedang Menelefon Saya" (exact traslation will be "Please Calling me") it is just blatantly wrong grammatically and even if we ignore the grammar error, the meaning of the word itself doesn't make any sense.

In the context that is used by the DJ, the correct word to use is supposed to be "Call Me". Should the DJ choose to playfully say it with substituting 'Me' to 'Saya', then the DJ should have said "Call Saya" instead of "Calling Saya".

I don't really know if the DJ was just playing around when he decides to use that word, or he was just not thinking about it or if he just simply doesn't know that the usage of the word is wrong. But, since it is a radio station that broadcasts to the whole nation, and is amongst one of the most popular BM language radio station in Malaysia, I hope that they will take into account this little things that could make a difference.

Although it sounds anal and insignificant, but thinking back to what my bro-in-law said, it is true. Whether we intends to or not, our children learn through listening and watching the mass media. If a nationally recognize entity decides to adopt and start a culture where usage of language is not being maintained in at least an acceptable level, what do you think will happen to our children? If language, that shapes a nation's identity is not respected in a certain's level, who can say that something more important will not soon receive the same treatment?

Just a little food for thought.

As Bratty as ever with lots and lots of pent up opinions,

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