People who say that English is an incredibly difficult language to learn and use the "ough" sequence as an example. If English is so difficult then why do so many people automatically go to the same single feature as their illustration?
English has its irregularities, certainly, but so do other languages. I gather that even Esperanto has had irregularities creep into it.
I have the ability to speak to animals. If they had the ability to understand that speech then we'd really be on to something.
I don't think it's taught properly in the UK though. I only learnt English properly when I learnt foreign languages.
That's... basically what I said? Or at the very least it complements rather than contradicts what I said
I think it's also because you don't really get taught the specifics behind some things. For example, in Dutch we have different genders for nouns. In English it's only 'the' or 'a/an', while in Dutch it's 'de/het' (the) or 'een' (a/an). When the gender of the noun is female or male, it gets 'de', and when it's neutral it gets 'een' as a determiner. As a native speaker of Dutch I don't really think about the rules, I just use it on instict, basically. BUt when you learn Dutch as a native speaker of English, this is very hard to learn, because of all the exceptions to the rule.
Not quite under the same category but while we're here, I think it's the absolute height of rudeness to get someone's name wrong. We all make mistakes sometimes, as long as we apologise and learn then it's completely forgivable, but if you're continually misspelling someone's name, especially in a place where all communication is written (like, say, the internet) and you therefore have no reasonable reason to get the spelling wrong (typing Clare when it should be Claire, for instance), then I have to assume you're just an exceptionally rude human being.
I think it's the absolute height of rudeness to get someone's name wrong.
I also hate it when someone abbreviates a name or uses a variant form on the assumption that it's close enough. The name someone gives you is the name they want you to know them by, so don't decide that a different name would be better.
Where I used to work we had someone who went by Dave as a shortened form of his given name, and some slightly officious person decided this was too informal and insisted that the company records had him listed as David. Except that his name was actually Sukhdave. Oops.
See I don't mind shortening of my name but not variants and don't get me started on people getting the spelling of my name whether it's the full name or the shortened one.
I actually use 'Emi' as a shortened version of my name because I got sick of being called 'Emma' as a kid. I don't actually mind 'Em' as a shortened version, I just don't particuarly like being an 'Emma' when I'm an 'Emily' (Emilia isn't so bad as technically my actual name could be a shortened version of it)
But really in general, it's not hard- if you forget/mispronounce a name apologise and everyone can move on.