Search found 2974 matches

by Phil White
Sun Mar 18, 2018 11:02 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: ** Finnish comedian Ismo Leikola explains
Replies: 1
Views: 456

Re: ** Finnish comedian Ismo Leikola explains

Nice. Why does he sound as if he was brought up in Mumbai?
by Phil White
Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:50 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: I wish I had said it... first!
Replies: 1
Views: 321

Re: I wish I had said it... first!

Duly appropriated.
by Phil White
Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:45 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Sideboards
Replies: 5
Views: 1188

Re: Sideboards

As far as my own ideolect is concerned, it was always "sideboards" until I was about 30 or so. I suspect I heard "sideburns" and thought I had been mishearing all those years. Ever since then I have used "sideburns".
by Phil White
Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:37 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Emoji
Replies: 4
Views: 1059

Re: Emoji

Should you be unaware, this new incarnation of the board supports not only smilies, but also emojis, which means I can now tell the old joke about Wigan Yacht Club's new logo:

W⚓️
by Phil White
Thu Mar 01, 2018 7:30 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Can't be arsed
Replies: 8
Views: 834

Re: Can't be arsed

There's a number of expressions that feature "arse/ass" and are peculiar in meaning: Can't be arsed Half-arsed Get one's arse in gear The first two of these seem to suggest a correlation between "arse" and "effort". The third appears to be similar to the idea mentioned above of getting one's arse of...
by Phil White
Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:08 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: currently sat
Replies: 15
Views: 1237

Re: currently sat

I think you need to make a better case than that for differentiating between stood/sat/knelt and the additional instances I put forward. "Need to"? Only if I have good reason to believe that my intuition is any more reliable in this case than anyone else's. Or if I am out to prove at all costs that...
by Phil White
Tue Feb 20, 2018 11:00 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: currently sat
Replies: 15
Views: 1237

Re: currently sat

Apart from "I was sat/stood", which have already been given, I can only think of one other body position that allows this construction: "I was knelt (at the altar)." Consider also stooped (over), bent (over), squatted (over / on), crouched (over / on) : "I saw him in the playground yesterday aftern...
by Phil White
Tue Feb 20, 2018 12:00 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: currently sat
Replies: 15
Views: 1237

Re: currently sat

Nice spot, trolley. My intuition tells me a few things: Yes, it is very much a UK thing I suspect also that it is from the broad London region (Estuary English), which may root it in East Anglian or Essex dialects. Either way, it flows much more naturally with an Estuary accent. Apart from "I was sa...
by Phil White
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:25 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: gave her the flashlight to...
Replies: 7
Views: 617

Re: gave her the flashlight to...

Hmmmm. Of your 4 sentences, the first 3 are fine. Something troubles me about "We send you to school to acquire useful knowledge," although I cannot pin down why. Generally, I am at a loss as to why some sentences work and some don't. I don't think it has to do with the main verb. It will take some ...
by Phil White
Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:13 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: gave her the flashlight to...
Replies: 7
Views: 617

Re: gave her the flashlight to...

Sentence 1 is so labored as to be painful: "She was in the way of the bike. I pushed her out of the way of the bike." That also eliminates the construction that you seem to be asking about. Sentence 2 is fine, but there is no benefit to using the "to her" variant in sentence 3. That leaves sentence ...
by Phil White
Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:16 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: talked to him first
Replies: 3
Views: 414

Re: talked to him first

Admirably thunk, good man.
by Phil White
Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:10 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: as regards
Replies: 1
Views: 262

Re: as regards

Sentence 5 is simply incorrect however you try to read it. Sentence 3 can only refer to the particular law that covers John's misdemeanor. The remainder are all ambiguous, probably slightly favouring the interpretation "the law covering John's misdemeanor". Simply reversing the order of the sentence...
by Phil White
Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:00 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: each/every/all
Replies: 1
Views: 261

Re: each/every/all

In theory, sentences 1 and 4 require your reading a) and all the rest require your reading b).

That said, I would very much expect most people to understand all the sentences as your reading b).

The distinction between "each" and "every" has never been well upheld in spoken English.
by Phil White
Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:48 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: talked to him first
Replies: 3
Views: 414

Re: talked to him first

Yes and yes. The ambiguity of the second sentence does not arise in spoken English, as the meanings would be intonated differently. As far as your first sentence is concerned, I think you are scraping the barrel for ambiguity here. Yes, it is ambiguous, but only to the extent that virtually any temp...
by Phil White
Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:22 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: it is worth
Replies: 3
Views: 438

Re: it is worth

This use of "it" can be analyzed in a couple of different ways. One way is to see "it" as an anticipatory subject. This reading allows the sentence to be read as "that movie is worth seeing". The other way is to see it as an empty subject. I believe Quirk et al also call this a "prop" subject. It is...