Search found 8370 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 25, 2020 2:11 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the best cars in the lot
Replies: 1
Views: 33

Re: the best cars in the lot

I take a), b) and c) to be mildly humorous statements saying that both the best and the worst cars in the lot are John's. They all seem unexceptionable.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:34 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A ride home
Replies: 2
Views: 104

Re: A ride home

No. It is so overly polite that it sounds wheedling and somewhat passive-aggressive. It implies a presumption by the asker that the driver would be unlikely to say yes if they were asked for a lift in a direct manner (either because it would be inconvenient or because the driver isn't a very nice pe...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:24 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Thanks a bunch
Replies: 9
Views: 246

Re: Thanks a bunch

In my immediate circle, "Thanks a bunch!" is always a sarcastic comeback in response to an inconsiderate, thoughtless or otherwise unwelcome action or utterance. I'm not sure that I've ever used it to express genuine thanks for something. Though I suppose if someone presented me with a bouquet of f...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:15 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: all of the pets
Replies: 1
Views: 50

Re: all of the pets

As usual with the sentences you present that are void of context, they are ambiguous. They could all be taken to mean that Tom couldn't stand either A) some of the pets or B) all of the pets. Insufficient information has been provided for the reader to be sure which of these interpretations is corre...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:01 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: what is she upset about
Replies: 1
Views: 64

Re: what is she upset about

They all seem perfectly acceptable to me. I don't see that there is any problem with the first pair.

Why don't they make sense to you?
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:31 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: all I've seen
Replies: 1
Views: 61

Re: all I've seen

Context, context, context...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Sep 19, 2020 9:59 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: no way
Replies: 1
Views: 97

Re: no way

I perceive no significant difference in meaning with any of these. What are the differences in meaning between 1-3 and 4-5, in your opinion? 4) would not be spoken by a native speaker (it should say "will I", not "I will", i.e. it would be identical to 5).. The elision of the initial "There's" in 2)...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Sep 19, 2020 9:46 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Thanks a bunch
Replies: 9
Views: 246

Re: Thanks a bunch

Individual usage varies. In my immediate circle, "Thanks a bunch!" is always a sarcastic comeback in response to an inconsiderate, thoughtless or otherwise unwelcome action or utterance. I'm not sure that I've ever used it to express genuine thanks for something. Oh dear... What a bunch of curmudgeo...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 18, 2020 6:12 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: resulted in there being few
Replies: 2
Views: 92

Re: resulted in there being few

To my mind, a) implies that there was an expectation that the new regulations would generate accidents, but that this expectation was not borne out as much as had been anticipated. By contrast, b) unequivocally states that the new regulations were directly responsible for bringing about a situation ...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:28 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: with Freud
Replies: 2
Views: 100

Re: with Freud

I prefer to stay awake when I'm driving.

Unlike this fellow: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-54197344
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:51 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: An entire row
Replies: 2
Views: 99

Re: An entire row

You sit in a row, and you have it to yourself. (There's often not much logic underpinning which prepositions have become standard in particular contexts. :) ) Except for the two uses of 'at' where a native speaker would have said 'in', your sentence is basically OK (though I would probably say what ...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 16, 2020 1:16 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: But don't tell a soul
Replies: 11
Views: 332

Re: But don't tell a soul

In the poem "Twas the Night Before Christmas", as Santa is about to leave the scene he "lays his finger aside of his nose" and gives a nod. I always thought that was a strange way to say "keep quiet". So we now have three different gestures involving the use of an index finger to indicate silence: ...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 16, 2020 1:05 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the meaning of
Replies: 1
Views: 80

Re: the meaning of

Only 1) and 4) strike me as being anything close to what you might call 'natural'.

The most natural way of expressing these concepts employs the relative pronoun "whose":

He is the man whose brother I have to find.

This is a word whose meaning I have to find [out].
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 16, 2020 5:27 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: But don't tell a soul
Replies: 11
Views: 332

Re: But don't tell a soul

Why didn't he put his finger across his pursed lips like everyone else does to say "Shhhh..."? Maybe there is a connection in these two gestures...the side of the nose somehow evolved into across the lips? Perhaps keeping something secret in the future is seen as sufficiently different to being phy...
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:17 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: But don't tell a soul
Replies: 11
Views: 332

Re: But don't tell a soul

Keep mum about this. Keep it under your hat. This is just between you and me. Let's keep it a secret. Let's keep this on the down low. Don't go spilling the beans. If anybody asks, you don't know nothing. Let's keep it quiet. Nobody else needs to know. Keep your trap shut. Keep shtum. It would be q...