What is an example of a time when someone struggles to understand a vague or confusing language?

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Anything involving two languages is an example of that. Every town in Mexico has its own collection of idioms. There are places where you don't say "eggs" because that has sexual connotations. In some towns you can't discuss your favorite beer outside the bar because the names are smutty. One example is "Bell Ringer".

Nikita Kruschev spoke at the UN and said, in the English translation, "We will bury you." The Russian expression is not so easily translated, but it is closer to "We will leave you in our dust." A Japanese minister's comment on a crisis was translated "We will ignore it," but the Japanese expression was of uncertain meaning even in Japanese. It might have meant "We will think about it," or "We won't talk about it," or "We don't know about it."

A huge problem is translating from languages that don't even exist any more. It might interest you to know that there were eye witnesses to what we mistakenly call creation. They recorded their observations as best they could, carving some records into stones and passing verbal accounts from one generation to the next. It has taken a very long time to interpret these records because they don't describe anything we have seen. For example the legend of the dragon is carved into rocks all over the world, but it is only recently that anybody has noticed a natural effect that fits that description. This is a long book because it tries to cover everything completely.

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