Shiny

Yesterday’s topic was ‘adjectives of personality’. After the students had learned and practiced vocabulary items and sentence patterns, I gave them the simple sentence ‘I am ____ (adj) and ____ (adj)’. They were remarkably unimaginative about it. I then gave them ‘My best friend is ____ (adj) and ____ (adj)’. One student said ‘My best friend is happy and shiny’. I said, ‘What do you mean by that?’. He said, ‘He was the best student in the class’. I said, ‘That’s not a standard English thing to say’. He said, ‘My teacher in Pakistan said it all the time’. I repeated, ‘That’s not a standard English thing to say’, then went on to the next student.

Dictionary.com does not record this usage. The Urban Dictionary does – it has 37 entries, with various definitions and examples, some referring to the slang developed for the Firefly/Serenity series/movie (which I have never watched). I doubt that’s where the Pakistani teacher got it from, though.

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