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Friday, July 14, 2017

Celebrate the small things: mawish

Let me begin with a confession: I thought moreish was spelled mawish. I even confidently told a student so. M-A-W-I-S-H, I said, is a synonym for hungry, as in I'm feeling mawish. Yes, shocking isn't it? Not only the wrong spelling, but the wrong definition. Upon realising this grave error-just now- I have determined that I am no longer fit to teach English as a second language, and I will therefore be submitting a letter of resignation on Monday.

The timing is most unfortunate though, as I am soon to be, if my
information is correct, made permanent, having been unwillingly retained as a casual employee for nearly a year. I learned this piece of good news last night at a work dinner held to farewell one of our colleagues who received a better offer, and rightly accepted it.


I chose the restaurant: a little selfishly picking one within walking distance of home, so I could have a few drinks. The restaurant was called Moorish-no kidding. What a coincidence right?

Not at all. The name of this terrific tapas bar and restaurant made me think of the word mawish, which I now know is actually spelled moreish and evidently does not mean hungry, but rather refers to food which makes you want to eat more of it. You know the feeling: you taste something and you love it and you have to eat more of it.

Moorish refers to the Moors (North African Arabs), so Moorish food is cooked in the style of this region. We had a four course tapas banquet which featured a succession of wonderfully flavoured and textured dishes. Everyone was pleased with the food. We had a great night. The place was packed, but the service was sharp. Read my review of Moorish cafe. An all round winner, and the inspiration for this celebrate post in which I was all set to play with the words Moorish and Mawish. Unfortunately, as I explained earlier, mawish is not a word, but Moorish and moreish still works as an example of a pair of homophones.

Homophones? I guess I still have something to offer as an ESL teacher. Perhaps I won't quit after all. Maybe I'l stay and enjoy being made a permanent employee, which effectively means a pay rise. 

What do you think? Should I stay on? Have you eaten Moorish food? What food would you describe as moreish?

10 comments:

  1. You made me look....a definitely interesting post. Oh, and I suspect you (and I) chose the spelling "mawish" due to knowing the meaning of the word maw. Live and learn!

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    1. Actually I still can't quite believe it's not a word. Maw...mawish...it makes sense right? Anyway, we are talking about English which is possibly the most nonsensical language earth.
      Great work with 7 Days of Seven btw. My review is up on Goodreads and Amazon.

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  2. I think everyone has at least one word they've heard and spell wrong, or have read and pronounce wrong. I don't think you should quit your job over it.

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    1. No doubt. One of my favourites (that I've heard others say) is aks instead of ask. I had my tongue firmly in my cheek when I announced I was quitting. I love my job.

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  3. Congratulations on the 'promotion'! I honestly didn't know the true meaning of moreish either, by the looks of it. The best teachers are those who admit to making mistakes because I don't think there's a teacher out there who's perfect. . .only those who are arrogant enough to think they are.

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    1. I frequently tell my students that the classroom is a 'mistakes are welcome' environment' Don't be afraid to have a go. Who cares if you get it wrong? Even I, your teacher, fountain of all wisdom and knowledge, get it wrong sometimes.
      But seriously you're dead right Tonja. The best teachers are people who are humble and teachable. Whether teaching children or adults, learning is a two way street.

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  4. I hope you enjoy your new position. It was fun to learn about the meaning of Moorish. Glad you had a fun time at the restaurant. It sounds like a nice celebration.

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    1. I've been telling others about the great dining experience at Moorish, and they're all like, 'yes, I love it there. Great food.'

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  5. Don't quit. Everyone has those words - words we've said and heard but never actually written. On the flip side, there are dozens of words that you've read again and again but never actually say, so when you go to use it for the first time in your life you realise you have no idea how to say it.
    English, ain't it fun.

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    1. Funny you say that Samantha. A student asked me today, 'What si that thing they say after singing Happy Birthday? I figured out she meant the three cheers bit at the end. I told it was 'hip hip hooray', then she asked me how to spell it and I was writing it on the board I was thinking what? Is this right? I don't think I've ever written this before. It was so weird...and it proves your point perfectly. Btw I was never going to quit. My tongue was firmly in my cheek. I love my job.

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