"Anyway, I don't see the appeal for making a programming language more like English."
I have to agree with this sentiment. COBOL anyone?
I've seen the "Englishness" of ruby (and Rails) mentioned a in various places as a Good Thing, but isn't this sort of a narrow view to be taking in today's world? Sure, English is still the lingua franca of the computing world, but surely all those native Hindi and Chinese speakers don't find English-like grammar to be nearly so intuitive.
It's interesting to note in this context that ruby was designed by a Japanese guy. Good thing it didn't come out looking like Engrish ;)