Author Topic: Cato's Grammar Grumble  (Read 564278 times)

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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #180 on: February 18, 2009, 07:36:50 AM »


Thee also seems appropriate sometimes when you're speaking slowly, the being such a short sound to leave hanging in the air.


Sean is talking about the mispronunciation of "the" as "Thee" before consonants instead of vowels.

I have heard people use "Thee" when they are trying to emphasize something: e.g. That is thee best book I have ever read.

Not wanting to tergiversate,  0:)   I am not sure I should accept it, although I understand the impulse behind it.

Better to recompose the music of the statement in such cases: "That is the best book I have ever read!"
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karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #181 on: February 18, 2009, 07:51:11 AM »
Even when speaking slowly, it is possible to use the (avec schwa), and simply not give the definite article the same long duration as everything else.

sul G

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #182 on: February 18, 2009, 10:56:37 AM »
Even when speaking slowly, it is possible to use the (avec schwa)...

Mahler would say 'Schwangvoll'...

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #183 on: February 18, 2009, 11:33:55 AM »
Mahler would say 'Schwangvoll'...

I do believe Mahler said "schwungvoll" because "schwangvoll" comes close to meaning something like "full of pregnancy" !   :o

Of course, Mahler's works are full of ideas pregnant with meaning!   0:)

But not this time!   8)
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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #184 on: February 18, 2009, 01:43:14 PM »
Another grumble for today:  8)

The tendency to shorten words to monosyllabic mumbles and guttural grunts is annoying me more than ever!

"App" for application.  "Mum" for chrysanthemum.  "Tatt" for tattoo, and by the way...speaking of our piratesque Generation X...

Don't get me started on the pierced and tattooed members of our society, who are pierced and tattooed either because they are  in dire need of attention, even the negative attention of disgust and repulsion, or because they are so dissatisfied with themselves that they buy the delusion that attacking their bodies in this way will make them attractive somehow!   $:)

I immediately walk out of stores and restaurants as soon as I see that I might have to deal with some pierced or painted emetic.    8)
« Last Edit: February 18, 2009, 01:47:17 PM by Cato »
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Offline Lethevich

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #185 on: February 18, 2009, 04:25:20 PM »
Don't get me started on the pierced and tattooed members of our society, who are pierced and tattooed either because they are  in dire need of attention, even the negative attention of disgust and repulsion, or because they are so dissatisfied with themselves that they buy the delusion that attacking their bodies in this way will make them attractive somehow!   $:)

I don't see the accumilation of body mods as any different to other costly hobbies (music included) - both involve paying for something to gratify yourself with. Even supposedly anti-materialist Buddhist monks often have tattoos to keep them from getting bored with life 0:)
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Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #186 on: February 18, 2009, 05:09:43 PM »
In my culture, self-mutilation is a cry for help, a sign of a soul in torment.  That this has become fashionable among the young shows just how far from sanity our values have strayed.  I can tolerate it in some circumstances, but not on employees of an establishment serving food.  I lose my appetite at the sight of metal studs and rings puncturing the flesh of innocent faces.
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Offline Jay F

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #187 on: February 18, 2009, 05:31:23 PM »
In my culture, self-mutilation is a cry for help, a sign of a soul in torment.  That this has become fashionable among the young shows just how far from sanity our values have strayed.  I can tolerate it in some circumstances, but not on employees of an establishment serving food.  I lose my appetite at the sight of metal studs and rings puncturing the flesh of innocent faces.
I know someone around our age (I assume you haven't been a teenager in some time, either) who insists not only upon getting tattoos and piercings, but also on whipping out photos of said mutilations when he's somewhere he can't whip out the actual location(s) of those mutilations. I poured part of a cup of coffee on his hand and his picture when he showed one to me in a coffee shop. I couldn't believe it.

I think it was you who brought it up earlier, how some people, when they can't get positive attention, will settle for the other kind. I wasn't even gonna give him that.

And I am not a conservative.

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #188 on: February 18, 2009, 05:33:53 PM »
You seem to have an unusually inflexible definition of both what constitutes self-abuse and to equate some tattoos and piercings with lapsed values is IMO incorrect. Your calling it "mutilation" already hints that you are uninterested in understanding any other viewpoint, though.
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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #189 on: February 18, 2009, 05:59:35 PM »
You seem to have an unusually inflexible definition of both what constitutes self-abuse and to equate some tattoos and piercings with lapsed values is IMO incorrect. Your calling it "mutilation" already hints that you are uninterested in understanding any other viewpoint, though.

Psychiatrists have identified one reason for piercings/tattooings: the person gets hooked on the endorphins involved from the pain.  I listened to an interview with a tattooed 20-something, who said he became depressed when the tattoo was finished, and started constantly worrying and wondering when he would be able to afford another, and where it would go!   :o

It is no different from 40-somethings tinkering with plastic surgery: dissatisfaction with one's looks so great that they spend thousands and risk surgical complications, just like their lower-class counterparts risk hepatitis, chronic infections, AIDS, and long-term disfigurement for the "cool tattoo"!

And the odds are good that the general public will end up paying for most of these self-inflicted health problems!   $:)
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Offline Lethevich

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #190 on: February 18, 2009, 06:27:14 PM »
Psychiatrists have identified one reason for piercings/tattooings: the person gets hooked on the endorphins involved from the pain.  I listened to an interview with a tattooed 20-something, who said he became depressed when the tattoo was finished, and started constantly worrying and wondering when he would be able to afford another, and where it would go!   :o

So essentially you can't distinguish between people in the first category, and people in the second? ;)





It is no different from 40-somethings tinkering with plastic surgery: dissatisfaction with one's looks so great that they spend thousands and risk surgical complications, just like their lower-class counterparts risk hepatitis, chronic infections, AIDS, and long-term disfigurement for the "cool tattoo"!

Yes, because everybody who has a tattoo gets AIDS(!). We are taking this kind of ad-absurdum, aren't we? :D

And the odds are good that the general public will end up paying for most of these self-inflicted health problems!   $:)

This sounds a lot like wishful thinking. "These people look strange, I wish bad things on them!"

Seriously, people find ways to be extreme in every area of life, and the extremists tend to be a minority. As a result, while someone with a few piercings can be made an easy target by some pissed off individuals, people who do even more egregious things (health-wise, and "morality"-wise) have no such problems.

While I don't have any interest in body modifications - and my closest friends don't either - from my experience people with body modifications tend to be normal on the most part. I.e., they care about their health and won't go to backstreet parlours to have anything done to them. Even the most drunk and drugged up young people generally seem to be smart enough to realised the health problems a bad practitioner can cause.

Edit: Anyway, apologies if I come across as obstinate in these posts, this has been simmering for a while. GMG can be infuriating at times. On one day the root cause of the collapse of civilisation is some impending ethnic infiltration/invasion of the west, and the next day it is somebody who wants to pierce their scrotum.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2009, 06:48:58 PM by Lethe »
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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #191 on: February 19, 2009, 06:27:05 AM »
Ad absurdum indeed!   ;D

Read carefully!  I wrote that the tattooed and pierced risk such diseases, not that there was a guarantee.  Certainly chronic infections are the biggest and most likely result.

Nobody said this is causing the Untergang des Abendlandes!   :o

I and others said we find it personally revolting, and that it is symptomatic of a "Look At Me!" kulcher.   8)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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Dr. Dread

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #192 on: February 19, 2009, 07:21:55 AM »
ONLY THE ENGLISH COULD HAVE INVENTED THIS LANGUAGE

We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes,
But the plural of ox becomes oxen, not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
Yet the plural of moose should never be meese.
You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice,
Yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.

If the plural of man is always called men,
Then shouldn't the plural of pan be called pen?
If I speak of my foot and show you my feet,
And I give you a boot, would a pair be called beet?
If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth,
Why shouldn't the plural of booth be called beeth?

Then one may be that, and three would be those,
Yet hat in the plural would never be hose,
And the plural of cat is cats, not cose.
We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
But though we say mother, we never say methren.
Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him,
But imagine the feminine: she, shis and shim!

Let's face it - English is a crazy language.
There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger;
neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins weren't invented in England ..
We take English for granted, but if we explore its paradoxes,
we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square,
and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing,
grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham?
Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend.
If you have a bunch of odds and ends
and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?

If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
Sometimes I think all the folks who grew up speaking English
should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane.

In what other language do people recite at a play and play at a recital?
We ship by truck but send cargo by ship.
We have noses that run and feet that smell.
We park in a driveway and drive in a parkway.
And how can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same,
while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language
in which your house can burn up as it burns
down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out,
and in which an alarm goes off by going on.

And, in closing, if Father is Pop, how come Mother's not Mop?

I would like to add that if people from Poland are called poles then
people from Holland should be holes and the Germans, germs.

Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #193 on: February 19, 2009, 07:55:12 AM »
ONLY THE ENGLISH COULD HAVE INVENTED THIS LANGUAGE

Dave, you get an A+ for posting that!

 :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

Soooooooooooooooooooooo true!
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"Believe nothing you hear, and only one-half that you see." - Edgar Allan Poe

Dr. Dread

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #194 on: February 19, 2009, 08:13:39 AM »
Dave, you get an A+ for posting that!

 :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

Soooooooooooooooooooooo true!

I got it from a guy who got it in his email.  8)

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #195 on: February 19, 2009, 08:16:58 AM »
You seem to have an unusually inflexible definition of both what constitutes self-abuse and to equate some tattoos and piercings with lapsed values is IMO incorrect. Your calling it "mutilation" already hints that you are uninterested in understanding any other viewpoint, though.
I'm not sure that the post to which you're responding contains any evidence of the comparative flexibility of "my" definition of "what constitutes self-abuse."  In fact, it made no reference to the concept of self-abuse whatsoever.  It did, however, characterize "piercing" as mutilation--a term to which you also object and on the basis of which you mistakenly infer a closed mind.

Just so we can get our terms straight, let's not take my word for the meaning of the word:
Quote from: The American Heritage Medical Dictionary
Mutilation: Disfigurement or injury by removal or destruction of a conspicuous or essential part of the body.
That rending one's flesh to insert conspicuous chunks of metal is a form of mutilation is true by definition.  Being uncomfortable with that term and preferring to call it by some innocuous term like "body adornment" is simply double-speak--and that indicates the kind of prejudice that simply refuses to look squarely at the facts lest cognitive dissonance ruffle happily self-satisfied feathers.

The capacity of most humans to live with cognitive dissonance is amazing (albeit usually aided by liberal ingestion of alcohol and other mind-altering substances):  Consider those who object to scarification and other culturally prescribed forms of bodily mutilation practiced by other societies, yet who condone similar practices that are contrary to cultural norms in our own society.  Our species' endless capacity for self-delusion and self-justification is a wonder indeed!
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sul G

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #196 on: February 19, 2009, 08:24:51 AM »
 That rending one's flesh to insert conspicuous chunks of metal is a form of mutilation is true by definition.

Surely only if it disfigures (which is eye of the beholder stuff) or causes injury. According to the definition you supply, that is. If one doesn't consider oneself disfigured or injured, why should one feel mutilated?

I speak as one whose taste doesn't extend to body piercings but with no issue with those who do. I'm tempted to make the pun that those with the more Victorian views on this thread ought to ponder the Prince Albert, but maybe I should steer clear of that issue...  ;D
« Last Edit: February 19, 2009, 08:26:27 AM by sul G »

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #197 on: February 19, 2009, 09:56:59 AM »
Surely only if it disfigures (which is eye of the beholder stuff) or causes injury. According to the definition you supply, that is. If one doesn't consider oneself disfigured or injured, why should one feel mutilated?

I speak as one whose taste doesn't extend to body piercings but with no issue with those who do. I'm tempted to make the pun that those with the more Victorian views on this thread ought to ponder the Prince Albert, but maybe I should steer clear of that issue...  ;D


I hope somebody let him out of that can!   :o

The poem is on target of course: I think George Carlin used some of those lines in his early 1960's routines, before the routines became cruder.

I have been asked about the difference between tergiversate, which I used earlier in a response, and vacillate.

The former means constantly switching opinions and beliefs on a specific subject.  "Vacillate" means one is not very strong in holding an opinion, and might be thinking of switching, or maybe not!
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #198 on: February 19, 2009, 10:35:38 AM »
I have been asked about the difference between tergiversate, which I used earlier in a response, and vacillate.

The former means constantly switching opinions and beliefs on a specific subject. 

Ermmm.... not quite. It means to engage in tergiversation. :)

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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #199 on: February 19, 2009, 11:02:58 AM »
Ermmm.... not quite. It means to engage in tergiversation. :)



Another reason to avoid Internet dictionaries!  8)

I recall William F. Buckley using the word as a noun decades ago while he was describing a politician: "flip-flopping" is perhaps less elegant, but punchier!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)