In my first Latin class, I asked the professor to translate a phrase I remembered from my childhood. When I wrote it on the blackboard he said, “Don’t let the bastards get you down.”
He explained to the class that this phrase isn’t really Latin, at least in the most formal sense. It’s what he called “dog Latin”, strikingly different from what we all remembered as “pig Latin”. The professor took the occasion to explain the function of gerundives, which left the rest of the class darting killing glances at me for an hour. I remembered the phrase from a statuette my father had on his desk, but I never had known what it meant. So as the professor droned on about the Latin verb forms, the words on the board sank in and became a rule.
Know who you are, and stand up for yourself.