Search found 3378 matches

by Phil White
Mon Nov 18, 2019 11:44 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: useful for you to
Replies: 3
Views: 355

Re: useful for you to

My immediate reaction was the same as Bob's: "You will find this book useful for/in understanding ...". The fact that any given sentence is "grammatically correct" does not mean that it would be a natural choice for native speakers. I often choose "E" in answer to these questions, when my choices ar...
by Phil White
Wed Nov 13, 2019 11:59 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: to be worn
Replies: 2
Views: 386

Re: to be worn

Have you checked the price of hiking gear lately? You really are getting the hang of this humour thing, Erik. Well done! I liked that. Navi, there are a couple of things going on here. Firstly, your sentences 1 and 3 make use of an idiom, whereas sentences 2 and 4 do not. The idiom (too) + ADJECTIV...
by Phil White
Sat Nov 09, 2019 2:10 am
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Dealing with canvassers
Replies: 3
Views: 517

Dealing with canvassers

While out walking with Sheba today, I was, for understandable reasons, pondering how to get rid of canvassers at this election-tide. The following occurred to me: Ding dong "Oh excellent! Is that my copy of the Watchtower? Do come in so that we can have a chat." Any other ways? I am open to suggesti...
by Phil White
Fri Nov 08, 2019 2:55 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: how many
Replies: 2
Views: 558

Re: how many

Not really. They are different in that the attributive use is limited to a couple of scenarios and carries a certain nuance. "The school library has 320,000 books." "The library has how many books?" "I'm sorry, that should have been 32,000 books." In the above example, the "how many" is very heavily...
by Phil White
Sun Nov 03, 2019 11:47 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Squeeze in
Replies: 6
Views: 870

Re: Squeeze in

(One of the quirks of English is that the infinitive form "try to" can often be replaced by "try and". Don't ask me why.) This is one of the things that upset a lot of so-called grammarians. "Try and" is a very well established idiomatic usage, and there is no problem with using it in speech or inf...
by Phil White
Thu Oct 31, 2019 9:58 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: a great technique to keep in mind
Replies: 1
Views: 1001

Re: a great technique to keep in mind

You changed the sentence when you added the comma, and the result makes little sense with the comma. This is a great technique to keep in mind when arguing with narcissistic people. This is fine, and means that the technique is specifically for dealing with narcissistic people This is a great techni...
by Phil White
Thu Oct 31, 2019 9:40 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A salesclerk calls a customer "Hon"
Replies: 4
Views: 1039

Re: A salesclerk calls a customer "Hon"

This is a minefield, Steven! "Hon" (honey) is just one of many terms used to refer to people you are speaking to. Some are generally only used from men to women, some only used to women (either from men or women), and some are used far more widely. And there are a few that men only use towards men. ...
by Phil White
Sun Oct 27, 2019 1:23 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Out of my wheelhouse
Replies: 2
Views: 1374

Re: Out of my wheelhouse

I sit chastened... Although Ken's post(s) look at the positive "in one's wheelhouse". The negative "not in one's wheelhouse" seems to be slightly different from just the negative. Certainly Chris Buck in the clip I referenced was using it to mean "not in my comfort zone" (he actually says that towar...
by Phil White
Sat Oct 26, 2019 5:46 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Out of my wheelhouse
Replies: 2
Views: 1374

Out of my wheelhouse

I have to admit that I am sometimes a sad individual who watches videos of guitarists demonstrating pedals that I will never use, not only because I don't play that type of music, but also because I very rarely pick up my guitars at all nowadays. Be that as it may, I was watching this video by Chris...
by Phil White
Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:41 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: with you
Replies: 4
Views: 1524

Re: with you

Yes, more or less. It's not exactly natural, colloquial, flowing English, but the grammar and semantics are sound.

I think it works better if you turn it round: "Every trip is an ordeal with you." At least it does in this particular context. In other contexts, it works better the other way round.
by Phil White
Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:33 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: with you
Replies: 4
Views: 1524

Re: with you

They are grammatically fine. However, neither the speaker nor anyone else needs to be on the trip along with the person addressed. The sentences could also mean "Every trip you make is/becomes an ordeal (for you)", i.e. "you make life hard for yourself when you travel". Only context reveals whether ...
by Phil White
Wed Oct 16, 2019 9:18 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Hell-bent
Replies: 4
Views: 1617

Re: Hell-bent

Hi Steven, The idiom is usually "hell-bent on doing something". I have never heard the variant "hell-bent to do something, but the rest of the review (the full glory of which is on the IMDB site), is not well written. There are a couple of places where I wondered whether the writer was a native spea...
by Phil White
Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:06 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: that/it
Replies: 2
Views: 1593

Re: that/it

Another idiomatic alternative would be "... if you want to."

This is also somewhat dismissive or patronizing.
by Phil White
Mon Oct 14, 2019 8:42 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Like weeds
Replies: 2
Views: 1603

Re: Like weeds

In the UK, we don't really use "grow like weeds" to refer to kids growing fast, although we would understand it if someone used it that way. We would sometimes use "grow like a weed" to refer to a cultivated plant (which you want in your garden) that spreads very quickly and is difficult to get rid ...
by Phil White
Sun Oct 13, 2019 2:06 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: mass nouns
Replies: 2
Views: 1930

Re: mass nouns

Sentence 2 is not grammatically well-formed, because "intelligence" is not a countable noun. Sentence 3 is semantically odd. If we wish to speak of the sum talent of Tom and Pete as a team, we would be more likely to say: "Tom and Pete's talent was put to good use in that movie." But there is room f...