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  #41  
Old 27.06.2011, 21:53
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Re: I hate being wrong

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It's true that rules are shifting, and what's acceptable now wasn't then.
I'm often amused to observe, though, that many of the 'mistakes' which are identified as being evidence of the corruption of our language, aren't actually anything new at all (nor are they, for that matter, always mistakes).

I'd heartily recommend this book for anyone worried about missing out on the fabled Golden Age of English that never was.
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  #42  
Old 27.06.2011, 21:57
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Well, but my bone of contention is that speak it however ye may, but write it properly....
As always: context is everything.

One writes a postcard to a friend in one way, a letter to a potential employer in another way, and a birthday card to one's elderly aunt in yet another way.

So "write it properly" is a nice rule of thumb, but "write for your audience" is a better one.
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  #43  
Old 27.06.2011, 21:57
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Well, but my bone of contention is that speak it however ye may, but write it properly....but apparently Oxford accepts it's for 'it has' which I will go to my grave tsk-ing at as I'll still consider it lazy slang.
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Sadly, and I do hate to out my pedantic side at this but, "it's" for "it has" is no longer just a spoken problem as it shows up in the printed word far, far more frequently than I would consider acceptable. In a language with so few hard and fast rules, this is to be expected, but old cranks like me can still sit on the lawn, drink beer and tell the damn noisy illiterate kids to get the f-off my lawn.

Does that mean we can join you for a beer on your lawn now?
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  #44  
Old 27.06.2011, 22:01
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Does that mean we can join you for a beer on your lawn now?
Well, would you settle for a bottle of cheap Swiss plonk on my balcony?
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  #45  
Old 27.06.2011, 22:56
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Re: I hate being wrong

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ok so I was testing my English (I learned American English) and came across a test here.
Is this correct ?:

Please select the best word to complete the following sentence:
You ________ better see a doctor.
Answer:had

and

Please select the best word to complete the following sentence:
It ________ my brother.
Answer:is ages since I saw


to me they sound wrong but maybe in British they are correct?
My English teacher told me 'since' and 'for' is always followed by a perfect tense.

The teacher was not a native speaker though.
So, I can ignore this grammar rule from now on??
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  #46  
Old 27.06.2011, 22:59
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Re: I hate being wrong

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My English teacher told me 'since' and 'for' is always followed by a perfect tense.

The teacher was not a native speaker though.
So, I can ignore this grammar rule from now on??
Yes, because your English teacher was mistaken.

Here's an example of a perfectly (pardon the pun!) reasonable English sentence:

I have been living in Switzerland since I moved here in 2005.
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  #47  
Old 27.06.2011, 22:59
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Well, would you settle for a bottle of cheap Swiss plonk on my balcony?
Is there expensive Swiss plonk?

(well, perhaps there is by foreign standards )

Tom
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  #48  
Old 27.06.2011, 23:05
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Yes, because your English teacher was mistaken.

Here's an example of a perfectly (pardon the pun!) reasonable English sentence:

I have been living in Switzerland since I moved here in 2005.
If there isn't a perfect tense ('have been') before the 'since', would it still be correct?
E.g. I live in Switzerland, since I moved here.
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  #49  
Old 27.06.2011, 23:05
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Re: I hate being wrong

I come ________ England

I came???

first question............ um...........???
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  #50  
Old 27.06.2011, 23:08
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Re: I hate being wrong

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If there wouldn't be a 'have been' before the 'since', would it still be correct?
E.g. I live in Switzerland, since I moved here.
No, that wouldn't work...

Perhaps she just got mixed up, and meant to say that since should be preceded by a perfect tense?

Unfortunately, that isn't true for for: I used to live in Greece. I lived there for three years.
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  #51  
Old 27.06.2011, 23:11
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Re: I hate being wrong

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No, that wouldn't work...

Perhaps she just got mixed up, and meant to say that since should be preceded by a perfect tense?

Unfortunately, that isn't true for for: I used to live in Greece. I lived there for three years.
More likely it was me who got mixed up.
Cheers for the mini-lesson.
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  #52  
Old 28.06.2011, 09:51
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Re: I hate being wrong

this thread makes my brain hurt!

and yeah i'm a native speaker... but as I once told someone asking me about splitting the past participle (or something along those lines...) I speak it I don't teach it!
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  #53  
Old 28.06.2011, 10:00
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Re: I hate being wrong

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It's = It is

It is been ages... X
It has been ages :-)
It is ages ... Maybe.

Verbally, "It has" is lazily spoken as "Its"...
It is not lazy. It is perfectly correct contraction and grammatically correct when spoken. It is lazy when used in written English, or so I was taught, unless it is a transcription of speech. That said, nowadays, it seems to be... or rather it's used quite commonly on forums like EF.

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So "write it properly" is a nice rule of thumb, but "write for your audience" is a better one.
Are you suggesting writing for the lowest common denominator?
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  #54  
Old 28.06.2011, 10:22
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Re: I hate being wrong

And just to add confusion.

"How are things?" is often contracted to "How's things?"*

I never fully understood that one myself.


P.S. I was skanked by the quiz. 39/40.

"They have put speed bumps on the road to ________ accidents"

I didn't consider that speed bumps "prevent" accidents so plumped for "avoid".


"They have put speed bumps on the road to avoid accidents." is perfectly good English, oder?



* I'd much rather believe that there's an odd contraction, than believe that people readily say "How is things?"
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  #55  
Old 28.06.2011, 10:29
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Re: I hate being wrong

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"They have put speed bumps on the road to ________ accidents"

I didn't consider that speed bumps "prevent" accidents so plumped for "avoid".
Prevent is more passive, hence used here, while avoid is active; e.g. the bump is there to prevent an accident, but the cyclist swerved to avoid the car door...
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  #56  
Old 28.06.2011, 10:57
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Re: I hate being wrong

Pardon my brashness but I'd like to hijack this thread for an English / German translation problem.

We're having an "Abschluss" dinner for all those who went on a trip to New York with me. I still haven't figured out how to say "Abschlussessen" in English.

If it were the end of the semester, I could say "End of the semester dinner" but "End of our trip dinner" sounds awkward and "Final dinner" sounds too morbid.

Thanks!
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  #57  
Old 28.06.2011, 11:01
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Pardon my brashness but I'd like to hijack this thread for an English / German translation problem.

We're having an "Abschluss" dinner for all those who went on a trip to New York with me. I still haven't figured out how to say "Abschlussessen" in English.

If it were the end of the semester, I could say "End of the semester dinner" but "End of our trip dinner" sounds awkward and "Final dinner" sounds too morbid.

Thanks!

Closing dinner
End of trip finale dinner.
Review dinner
After-trip dinner.

Last one is my preferred one.
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Old 28.06.2011, 11:03
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Re: I hate being wrong

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We're having an "Abschluss" dinner for all those who went on a trip to New York with me. I still haven't figured out how to say "Abschlussessen" in English.

If it were the end of the semester, I could say "End of the semester dinner" but "End of our trip dinner" sounds awkward and "Final dinner" sounds too morbid.
Good Riddance Dinner?

I'd probably go with Farewell Dinner.
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  #59  
Old 28.06.2011, 11:03
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Re: I hate being wrong

Thanks for the reply.

"After trip dinner" would be mine as well but it just doesn't have the same sense of closure as an Abschlussdinner.
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Old 28.06.2011, 11:05
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Re: I hate being wrong

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Good Riddance Dinner?

I'd probably go with Farewell Dinner.
Farewell Dinner is also good but wouldn't it be more appropriate for leaving their job or country?
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