Search found 3392 matches

by Phil White
Thu Dec 12, 2019 5:05 pm
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Happy Christmas!
Replies: 1
Views: 415

Happy Christmas!

Greetings to all! For some reason, I woke early this morning. It was still dark, and the stars were out. But I could only see that because the lights were out too - which I thought was odd. I was unsettled about something. Then I remembered. I cannot recall whether it was Hector who was harrying me ...
by Phil White
Wed Dec 11, 2019 3:46 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A party
Replies: 3
Views: 1725

Re: A party

I have never heard a special phrase for that type of party. My first thought was that we might say something like "a thank-you party for our customers". But a little searching around on Google suggests that the terms "customer/client appreciation party" are quite widespread. Perhaps these terms are ...
by Phil White
Mon Dec 09, 2019 6:52 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: How old are you?
Replies: 8
Views: 2857

Re: How old are you?

Whether or not it is rude to ask a person's age depends on many things. Some people are very touchy about their age. Some people think that it is rude for a man to ask a woman how old she is. Some people think it is rude for younger people to ask older people their age. If an opportunity arises in c...
by Phil White
Mon Dec 09, 2019 3:24 pm
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Death of the apostrophe
Replies: 2
Views: 698

Re: Death of the apostrophe

Nice spot, trolley! One of the more amusing diatribes on the subject. But it also helped me to put the whole thing into sharp focus. As you know, I listen to text nowadays rather than attempting to read it visually. The voices I use to do so are extremely high quality, very natural sounding voices. ...
by Phil White
Fri Dec 06, 2019 11:08 pm
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Saint Nicholas, Santa Claus, Father Christmas
Replies: 8
Views: 6719

Re: Saint Nicholas, Santa Claus, Father Christmas

Where I lived, in the deepest, darkest regions of Bavaria, on the Austrian border, it was the Krampus who came on the 5th of December to scare the crap out of kids. An altogether more alarming figure than even Knecht Ruprecht, the Krampus always disturbed me. I do wonder about the psychological dama...
by Phil White
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:32 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?
Replies: 16
Views: 22472

Re: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?

Which is the same as many English-speaking doctors do.
by Phil White
Tue Dec 03, 2019 3:56 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?
Replies: 16
Views: 22472

Re: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?

Indeed. You still hear that occasionally when adults are talking to babies: "Ja, was macht er denn?" (And what are you doing?")
by Phil White
Mon Dec 02, 2019 12:29 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?
Replies: 16
Views: 22472

Re: the royal 'we' / the royal 'you'?

Nowadays, it is familiar to Germans primarily through period drama. My guess is that it was largely lost sometime at the end of the 19th century. I suspect that, if Germany still had a monarchy, it would survive in that context only. Even in the most formal situations, it has gone from the language ...
by Phil White
Sat Nov 30, 2019 7:32 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the early days with
Replies: 2
Views: 212

Re: the early days with

You ignore the possibility of there being early days when we didn't have proper equipment and early days when we did have proper equipment as well as later days (when we may or may not have had proper equipment). It could well be important to distinguish between the early early days and the later ea...
by Phil White
Wed Nov 27, 2019 10:00 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: waking Jane up
Replies: 13
Views: 1236

Re: waking Jane up

A bolt of fear went through him As they thundered through the sky Indeed, clever double metaphor. Good song. My favourite version is Robbie Krieger's (of the Doors) tongue-in-cheek version . Incidentally, the whole of that gig with Robbie Krieger and John Densmore is well worth watching if you are ...
by Phil White
Sun Nov 24, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: waking Jane up
Replies: 13
Views: 1236

Re: waking Jane up

Things have been completely clarified for me! This was really complicated. It was a big problem for me. I am glad that things are clear to you. They are far from clear to me. Or, more accurately, they are far from cut and dried. Many of your questions hinge on the fact that, although a particular c...
by Phil White
Sun Nov 24, 2019 12:18 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: waking Jane up
Replies: 13
Views: 1236

Re: waking Jane up

Erik's point is valid, but that actually goes back largely to your original question. As I said in my first response, there is a possible elliptical meaning to this type of construction, and the meaning you propose, namely that I kicked John while he was coming through the door is possible. The alte...
by Phil White
Sat Nov 23, 2019 4:08 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: comma plus and
Replies: 1
Views: 649

Re: comma plus and

The presence or absence of the comma has no impact on the fundamentally unnatural structure of the sentence. We would find different ways of expressing the intended meaning clearly. "Tim was playing the bass and Jack was making a dreadful noise on the drums." "Tim was playing the bass and Jack was p...
by Phil White
Sat Nov 23, 2019 3:56 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: waking Jane up
Replies: 13
Views: 1236

Re: waking Jane up

Trolley is right. I have said before that I think the term "adverbial" is the most useless designation used in linguistics. It has become a midden on which people throw anything they cannot explain adequately using conventional grammar. Always remember that the comma reflects a pause or change of in...
by Phil White
Mon Nov 18, 2019 11:44 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: useful for you to
Replies: 3
Views: 1113

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...