English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Grop » Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:58 pm UTC

I don't doubt different people use different signs; what I think is hard to believe, is that using a different sign makes you a foreigner. Especially after accepting that your accent is funny because you are from a specific place.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Sat Nov 22, 2014 11:44 pm UTC

I think using a different number sign, or generally a sign that is unusual for people of that language, makes you look strange, and in a war situation where people are looking for spies it makes you look like a potential spy.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby speising » Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:25 am UTC

I can accept that people who are keyed up against British or American spies would react to that error (although i don't know how common the knowledge about these things really was at that time).
The part which is hard to believe in light of that is that anyone would accept his British accent as a Swiss dialect in the first place.

But then, everyone (except Christoph Waltz) accepted the fake "Italians" later...

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:00 pm UTC

speising wrote:The part which is hard to believe in light of that is that anyone would accept his British accent as a Swiss dialect in the first place.

Swiss German is mostly unintelligible to standard (approximately, the Berlin dialect) German speaker. When talking to other Germans, Swiss use Swiss Standard German, which is their dialect of standard German and not their native language. If the German listeners had not been exposed to any significant Swiss media (and remember, this is an era when radio was new, and likely mostly controlled by the Nazi state) or native Swiss speakers, it seems plausible that they could not distinguish a Swiss Standard German accent from a foreign accent.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:05 pm UTC

Yeah, totally. Until I was 18 I didn't even know that Swiss German is basically a separate language. That's when I first met two Swiss people at the same time, who were swissing to each other. I could only pick up a few words but not understand what they were talking about.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Envelope Generator » Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:35 pm UTC

"Standing" vs. "standing as":

I was just writing something and got bogged down at wanting to write "X stands the most notorious example of Y in Z". Is that proper English? Should it be "stands as"? It's a tricky case to google for examples, and the few I've got ("I stand corrected", "We stand as one", "The score stands 18 to 14") go different ways and for all I know may not even be relevant when "stand" is used to connect nouns.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby eSOANEM » Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:39 pm UTC

stands on its own sounds strange to my (UK) ear. I'd definitely prefer stands as.

Of your examples, the last one also sounds a bit odd to me; it definitely feels like it needs either an at or an as to me.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:50 pm UTC

Envelope Generator wrote:"Standing" vs. "standing as":

I was just writing something and got bogged down at wanting to write "X stands the most notorious example of Y in Z". Is that proper English? Should it be "stands as"? It's a tricky case to google for examples, and the few I've got ("I stand corrected", "We stand as one", "The score stands 18 to 14") go different ways and for all I know may not even be relevant when "stand" is used to connect nouns.

Correct usage would be:

"X stands as the most..."
"I stand corrected"
"We stand as one"
"The score stands at 18 to 14" ("as" is not impossible here, but it's unlikely)

Unfortunately, I don't think I can give you a good rule for "as" versus "at" versus nothing without giving it a lot more thought.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Envelope Generator » Fri Jan 16, 2015 4:37 am UTC

Okay, thanks!
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Wed May 25, 2016 4:36 pm UTC

Is
I’m currently ironing the details with $name(s)
proper English?
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Deva » Wed May 25, 2016 4:41 pm UTC

"I'm currently ironing out the details with $name(s)."

Difference: Irons clothes. Irons out wrinkles.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby slinches » Wed May 25, 2016 5:41 pm UTC

This also works, with identical meaning:

"I'm currently ironing the details out with $name(s)."

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Wed May 25, 2016 6:04 pm UTC

Thx!
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Cathode Ray Sunshine » Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:13 am UTC

Hey everyone, I don't know if it's been discussed, but what is the consensus about using "their" for a singular subject?

Ex: A student should have their affairs in order before proceeding as apposed to A student should have his or her affairs in order before proceeding

I don't know if that is a proper example to explain what I'm talking about, but I hope it explains what my doubt is. I recall, a long, long, long time ago when I was learning English, that our teacher somewhat explained this to us, saying we might come across it. But is this correct, incorrect but accepted anyways, or was it as some point correct but revised and changed?

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Deva » Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:03 am UTC

Always chose "his or her" (or just "his") in the past. Considered "their" incorrect then. Appears undecided currently. Might slightly favor "his or her" still.

Prefers "their", personally.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby thunk » Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:22 am UTC

Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:but what is the consensus about using "their" for a singular subject?


Most serious linguists have cottoned on to the fact that it is acceptable, as it is the best of the alternatives, being used for several centuries already, and it's less clunky than the others. It also has the advantage of not neglecting non-binary folks.

In fact, most people use singular they to refer to unspecific singular subjects already, without realizing--even if they're against it.

of course, if you're writing a paper for class or something, the advice is to do what the instructor asks of you, even if their (see?) prescriptivism seems a bit silly.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Sun Jun 12, 2016 5:04 am UTC

It's very common, though frowned upon by prescriptivists, for unspecified or hypothetical persons, like Thunk said. The real debate is over usage with clearly specified subjects, of unknown or intentionally unspecified gender.

So "A student should have their affairs in order" is very common and will almost never be commented upon.

"Your friend should have their affairs in order" is more questionable.

"John should have their affairs in order" would be very unusual for most speakers.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Lazar » Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:16 pm UTC

Derek wrote:It's very common, though frowned upon by prescriptivists, for unspecified or hypothetical persons, like Thunk said.

By prescriptivists, yes, but it's gaining increasing currency in formal and official usage. For example, the Canadian government has recently made it its policy to use singular they in legislation. Somewhat less accepted is the reflexive form themself; many sources who use singular they will persist in using themselves in this role. (But I think the analogy of yourself, likewise derived from plural use, argues in favor of dropping the plural marker here.)

The real debate is over usage with clearly specified subjects, of unknown or intentionally unspecified gender.

So "A student should have their affairs in order" is very common and will almost never be commented upon.

"Your friend should have their affairs in order" is more questionable.

"John should have their affairs in order" would be very unusual for most speakers.

In popular usage it's really an issue of specification more than gender: Language Log has attested examples like, "If someone at my school got pregnant, I'd feel sympathy for them." Wikipedia attests "I had a friend in Paris, and they had to go to hospital for a month," which doesn't strike me as unintuitive either. The use of they to refer to a specific individual known to both conversants (as in your last example) is less well established, but it does occur as a way to refer to non-binary people.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:19 am UTC

Yes, singular they for unspecified subjects regardless of gender seems to be well established. That's what I meant by "the real debate is over...", I don't think any descriptivist would question singular they for unspecified subjects, but for specific subjects it's still pretty questionable, and you'll get a lot of disagreement about what examples sound natural if you were to ask people.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Cathode Ray Sunshine » Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:42 pm UTC

Hey guys, just stopping by to thank everyone who cleared my doubt. However, I have another, unrelated one :

Is it ever OK to say, for example, "My friends and me" instead of "My friends and I" ? I understand that the correct way uses the I, but does it exist a case where "...and me" is correct?

Thanks everyone. :)

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby poxic » Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:46 pm UTC

"The store gave free stuff to my friends and me."

Anywhere you'd say "me" instead of "I", in other words.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Tue Jun 21, 2016 5:55 pm UTC

Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:Hey guys, just stopping by to thank everyone who cleared my doubt. However, I have another, unrelated one :

Is it ever OK to say, for example, "My friends and me" instead of "My friends and I" ? I understand that the correct way uses the I, but does it exist a case where "...and me" is correct?

Thanks everyone. :)

Prescriptively, always "my friends and I" in subject positions. Descriptively, "Me and my friends" is very common. "I and my friends" is never used and "My friends and me" is very rare.

I can't give a good explanation for why the order matters, or why it's not even consistent, that's just the way it's done.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Xanthir » Tue Jun 21, 2016 7:49 pm UTC

Derek wrote:
Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:Hey guys, just stopping by to thank everyone who cleared my doubt. However, I have another, unrelated one :

Is it ever OK to say, for example, "My friends and me" instead of "My friends and I" ? I understand that the correct way uses the I, but does it exist a case where "...and me" is correct?

Thanks everyone. :)

Prescriptively, always "my friends and I" in subject positions. Descriptively, "Me and my friends" is very common. "I and my friends" is never used and "My friends and me" is very rare.

I can't give a good explanation for why the order matters, or why it's not even consistent, that's just the way it's done.

This looks like dialect differences, too - "my friends and me" sounds perfectly fine to my ear (as does "me and my friends" and "my friends and I").

But yeah, *technically* "I" and "me" are the subject and object versions, respectively, of the personal pronoun. But in practice the object version "me" can be used in subject-position phrases unless it's alone. That is, "Me went to the beach" is always wrong, but pretty much anything more complex ("Me or you have to go the beach", "Me and you had a good time at the beach", etc) is fine to use "me".
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby bigglesworth » Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:37 am UTC

The other person is put first in these constructions (you and I) for politeness' sake. It's a cultural, rather than grammatical part of English.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Wed Jun 22, 2016 2:17 am UTC

bigglesworth wrote:The other person is put first in these constructions (you and I) for politeness' sake. It's a cultural, rather than grammatical part of English.

I disagree. That may have originally been the case, or it may be a post hoc explanation, but either way I think it's a grammatical rule now.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Lazar » Wed Jun 22, 2016 4:00 am UTC

In formal registers, I'd say it's a grammatical rule. For example, "You and I went to the store" would be required in a formal register, and would coexist with "You and me went to the store" and "Me and you went to the store" in informal registers. But "I and you went to the store" sounds distinctly odd to me, even ungrammatical.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Cathode Ray Sunshine » Sat Jun 25, 2016 2:53 am UTC

Thanks for the great explanations everyone. :)

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby CharlieP » Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:03 am UTC

Xanthir wrote:That is, "Me went to the beach" is always wrong, but pretty much anything more complex ("Me or you have to go the beach", "Me and you had a good time at the beach", etc) is fine to use "me".


Has it really reached that level of acceptability now? :( I still argue that it's commonplace but still utterly wrong, but then again I'm the kind of person who mutters the missing "M" under his breath when somebody says "who" instead of "whom".

Using a slippery slope argument, when will "less" become an accepted synonym for "fewer", and in which decade will "your" be an abbreviation for "you are"?
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby HES » Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:22 am UTC

CharlieP wrote:when will "less" become an accepted synonym for "fewer"

It already is, I'm afraid. I'll fight tooth and nail to prevent the latter, though.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby bigglesworth » Mon Jun 27, 2016 5:15 pm UTC

You'r.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:20 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:when will "less" become an accepted synonym for "fewer"

It has been since forever. There is no evidence of a time period when English did not use "less" for countable objects, too. Until it is explicitly stated that there is something wrong with using less this way native English speakers feel that it is completely natural.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby poxic » Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:24 pm UTC

bigglesworth wrote:You'r.

ow ow ow
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Derek » Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:28 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:and in which decade will "your" be an abbreviation for "you are"?

Never. That's a misspelling, not a grammar error.

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Xanthir » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:33 am UTC

CharlieP wrote:
Xanthir wrote:That is, "Me went to the beach" is always wrong, but pretty much anything more complex ("Me or you have to go the beach", "Me and you had a good time at the beach", etc) is fine to use "me".


Has it really reached that level of acceptability now? :( I still argue that it's commonplace but still utterly wrong, but then again I'm the kind of person who mutters the missing "M" under his breath when somebody says "who" instead of "whom".

Same as Monika said for less/fewer, this hasn't "reached that level of acceptability now", it's been acceptable for longer than you've been alive. (And I can safely say that without knowing when you were born.)
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:10 am UTC

What does "wal" mean in the sentence "Was Gingerbread Man himself just part of a wal with eyes and mouth?" from this comic http://greenskyoverme.tumblr.com/post/1 ... se-frozach (text part kind of towards the end, but not searchable as it's part of the picture)?
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Lazar » Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:21 am UTC

Hmm, I've got no idea – and I couldn't turn up any relevant explanations with Google.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby jaap » Wed Jun 29, 2016 11:38 am UTC

From the context, it is probably just a typo for "wall".
There are several other errors in the text (past instead of passed, unbeknowest instead of unbeknownst, plauged instead of plagued).

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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Monika » Wed Jun 29, 2016 3:06 pm UTC

Ah, makes sense.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Wed Jun 29, 2016 8:24 pm UTC

Derek wrote:
CharlieP wrote:and in which decade will "your" be an abbreviation for "you are"?

Never. That's a misspelling, not a grammar error.
The question still stands. The question doesn't explicitly mention grammar, and the context of changes in language basically applies to spelling as well as grammar.

As to if and when the spellings of the orally identical "you're" and "your" would merge: I'd say it's probably going to be a long time, unless some kind of intentional spelling reform takes place.
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Re: English as She Is Spoke [English practice]

Postby CharlieP » Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:07 am UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:As to if and when the spellings of the orally identical "you're" and "your" would merge: I'd say it's probably going to be a long time, unless some kind of intentional spelling reform takes place.


I hope that's true, but given that the vast majority of written content these days is self-produced (social media, blogs etc.), and even that which is "formally" produced often goes unchecked (a bingo hall near me recently had large glossy posters outside proclaiming "Your just minutes away from a great bingo buzz!"), and there's a growing belief that "it doesn't really matter how it's spelt as long as the meaning's clear", I fear it may be not such a long time after all.
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