“Fill up this form.”
We were asked by the registrar to fill out the form she just handed to us. But did you know that to fill up means to pour something until a container is full? The better way to say it is “Fill out the form” or “fill in the form.”
This is just one of the English expressions we have come to accept and use in our everyday dealings. The truth is, they can cause confusion when used in conversation with native English speakers. It is because they are loosely translated and inaccurate.
Often, to express something, we literally translate words to cope up with our struggle with the language. English, after all, is not our first language. It is not what we commonly use to think and feel. I remember one momma relayed to her son that “your slippers are inverted.” She must be communicating to her little boy that his slippers were interchanged. These nonstandard English expressions used by Filipinos is what we refer to as Filipinism. Another funny example of Filipinism we often hear from Filipinos is “nosebleed.”