I like to think the linguistic aspect is a novel feature of Perl and damned clever of Larry to pin point.
Then I submit that you miss the whole idea about Perl
Perl was designed as a programming language that is constructed as a spoken language.
Everything about it, TIMTOWDI, DWIM, different features, design ideas, all the in-language features, etc. are derived from this idea, not the other way. All the verbosity, non-orthogonality, the sigils, the context-interpretation of variables, you name it. It's all ideas that come from spoken language, and implemented in Perl.
Only that unlike COBOL, or VB, or the likes, it doesn't use English-like keywords thinking it will make the language "easier to read", but use concepts that are used in spoken language. This way, when you speak fluent Perl, you can express yourself better, and not just "do more".