Let's make this thread an online English Class

Discussion in 'Free Thoughts' started by curioucity, Sep 1, 2003.

  1. Grammatically, that sentence is an abomination. Did not your middle school teacher ever explain the proper usage of the comma?
    I agree.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2003
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  3. Raithere plagued by infinities Valued Senior Member

    While technically James is correct the sentence is going to be grating on the nerves because of the conflict between the singular "is" and the plural "these statements" even though technically "any" can mean "any one". Personally, I'd change "is" to "are" or add the "one". Even grammatically correct sentences can be horrible. There's more to writing well than simply being technically accurate; in fact many of the best writers bend the rules of grammar for style or effect.

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  5. wesmorris Nerd Overlord - we(s):1 of N Valued Senior Member

    Just when I thought the old chap had finally slipped up. I accept your ruling and stand corrected.

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  7. curioucity Unbelievable and odd Registered Senior Member

    Hello again
    Hopefully this revived thread won't get closed right away... I revived it for a reason.
    First, thanks to all answerers so far, hopefully you'll still want to reply.
    Okay, Here's a new question from me:

    Is it <b>formally</b> okay to 'displace' a 'not' simply to reduce ambiguity? I mean like this:
    Remember/ever know a crazy advertisement of Visa (featuring Zhang Zi Yi in a restaurant making mess with all the staffs)? In that ad, she was told that she wouldn't have to pay for the soup. Now, if this were to be said in full sentence:
    You have <i>not</i> been charged for that soup. (most likely what I call formal, but I find it ambiguous of course, who knows she would be charged for it later that day...)
    You have been <i>not</i> charged for that soup.

    Which one(s) would be accepted formally?
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2004
  8. stacy Registered Senior Member

    my answ.
    It is not you who is calling me, but it is I who is calling you.

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  9. tablariddim forexU2 Valued Senior Member

    'Been not', don't sound right to me.

    You have Not been charged etc, is pretty clear to me, I didn't find it ambiguous; it's like saying, "I've been not with your wife', as opposed to "I have not been with your wife"; is the second version ambiguous? Does it mean that I haven't been with her Yet, but I might do so later? I guess it would only sound ambiguous if you knew the person to be a liar.

    'There is no charge for your soup', is totally unambiguous, but you were talking about misplacing the 'not'

    You have been not drinking... You have been not to the race track...
    You have been not charged with the crime... eh? Naa.
  10. water the sea Registered Senior Member

    'nuff calling, the thread is also for other questions about English:

    What does "How 'bout them apples" mean and when is this phrase used?

    Why the "them"?


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  11. curioucity Unbelievable and odd Registered Senior Member

    Hmmm, Rosa, I can give quite a hazard guess for that....
    Most likely it's either redundant reference or slang, here's my opinion:
    "How about them apples?" > I guess this actually asks about what to do with the apples, which have been referred to as 'them'. Formally, the letter 'm' is not there, so.........

    Oh, and about my latest question, what if I change the sentence into this:
    "You have been uncharged for the soup."
    Most of the time, un- prefix negates what it latches onto, right?
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2004
  12. water the sea Registered Senior Member


    Is English your mother tongue?

    If it isn't, it could be that your mother tongue interfers with your English skills in a specific way.
    A sentence like "You have been uncharged for the soup" smells like a mixture of a, say, a certain Slavic syntax, and English.

    (English isn't my mother tongue, so my interferences produce things like "some informationS", "I didn't see nobody", "When I yesterday came home, ..." ...)

    Anyways, special attention is needed if English isn't your mother tongue, and if your mother tongue is a language with cases, numbers, verb aspect ... All the stuff English doesn't have.

    Let me know.

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  13. chunkylover58 Make it a ... CHEEEESEburger Registered Senior Member

    Here's a language lesson that many need to learn. The word is "memento," not "momento" as in, "This ticket stub will be a memento of our first date," NOT a momento. Think "memory" having a similar root.

    That drives me nuts.


    "mano a mano," as in a method of fighting, is not "Man to man" or "one on one." "Mano a mano" is a Spanish term meaning, quite literally, "hand to hand."

    Oh yeah, then there's that whole its/it's thing so many don't get.....
    I've seen that mistake made in the body copy of a very expensive full page ad in a high-circulation magazine. :bugeye:

    OK... more:

    Just because a word ends in "S" doesn't mean there should be an apostrophe before the "S." Possessives and contractions only.

    Desert is a dry arid expanse of land (noun) or the act of abandoning or being abandoned (verb).
    Dessert is sweet, yummy goodness after dinner.

    Principal is a noun or an adjective. "Leader or chief" as a noun (also a financial term), "key or most important" as an adjective.
    Principle is only a noun. "A basic truth, law or assumption."

    There: a location other than here
    Their: Belonging to them
    They're: contraction of "they are"
  14. Madscientist1 Registered Member

    Who the Heck talks like this anymore.....or maybe it should be who the heck speaks like this anymore.....I'm confused....I'm going to crawl back under my rock.
  15. water the sea Registered Senior Member


    Eye halve a spelling chequer
    It came with my pea sea
    It plainly marques four my revue
    Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.

    Eye strike a key and type a word
    And weight four it two say
    Weather eye am wrong oar write
    It shows me strait a weigh.

    As soon as a mist ache is maid
    It nose bee four two long
    And eye can put the error rite
    Its rare lea ever wrong.

    Eye have run this poem threw it
    I am shore your pleased two no
    Its letter perfect awl the weigh
    My chequer tolled me sew.

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  16. chunkylover58 Make it a ... CHEEEESEburger Registered Senior Member

  17. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    "Not" always precedes the verb. The only exceptions are the auxiliary verbs: can, may, must, will, shall, could, would, have, has, etc. So in this case the "not" follows the "have" but preceeds the "been". "You have not been charged for the soup," is correct.

    Using "them" in place of "those" is rural American dialect. It sometimes occurs in slang phrases so old that we don't even remember their origin. "How 'bout them apples?" is just a silly, slangy way to ask what you think about some unexpected or embarrassing development.

    "Uncharged" is a word, but it carries the electrical meaning of the word "charge," not the monetary meaning. "When we bought the new battery it was uncharged." This is not the same as "discharged." "Uncharged" means that the battery has never been charged.

    A lot of people don't speak (not "talk") correctly any more (not "anymore"). Even well-educated people who know better often speak colloquially. The great intellectual movement of the 1960s and 1970s is dead. People are no longer proud to be smart. They want to appear as stupid as the people they see on TV. Nonetheless, there are still a few of us who speak properly.
  18. curioucity Unbelievable and odd Registered Senior Member

    I see. Lots of great lessons here, thanks.
    And Rose, true, English is not my mother tongue, and to tell you the truth, I'm Asian.

    And Fraggle, thanks for the info. So you're saying that 'not' always comes after a normal verb or an auxiliary verb, whichever comes first, right? And thanks for that uncharged (aw geez....).
    By the way, what distinguishes 'anymore' and 'any more'? Or is it that 'anymore' isn't a correct word?
  19. chunkylover58 Make it a ... CHEEEESEburger Registered Senior Member

  20. bitterchick Why must you taunt me so? Registered Senior Member


    Actually, none. "It is I" is incorrect. the direct object version of "I" is always "me." A lot of people use "I" as the direct object ("If you want some help tonight, call Tom and I) because it *sounds* more literate, but it's grammatically incorrect.

    I don't have my book with me tonight to quote the actual rule, or what the real term is for my "direct object version" thing, but I'll put it up when I get a moment at work tomorrow.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2004
  21. mithrandhir Registered Member

    i dont think there is so much learning anything possible with a thread.
  22. curioucity Unbelievable and odd Registered Senior Member

    ummm, bitterchick, I wonder about that...... I once took an English course which explains about this structure of sentence:
    It + BE + Subject + clause
    (example: It was he who knocked the door)
    That's why I wrote that, not top mention that I think I go with the "It's I who am blah blah" one..........
  23. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    That is right.
    That is wrong. The verb "to be" does not take a direct object, it takes a predicate complement. Predicate complements are always in the nominative case. Therefore:

    "It hit me on the head."


    "It is I."

    As for "anymore" and "any more," you folks are right. The dictionary says that "anymore" has gained so much ground in the 20th century that it is interchangeable with "any more" in many situations. About the only construction in which it is incorrect would be, "Is there any more beer?"

    When you're talking about time, it's OK. "I don't live there anymore."

    It started out in the Midlands region of England but now it's considered correct throughout the U.S. except in New England.

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