Author Topic: Cato's Grammar Grumble  (Read 555402 times)

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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #680 on: June 18, 2009, 12:10:34 PM »
Having seen it much too often in national examinations he has recently corrected, Cato hereby bans, eliminates, eradicates, and otherwise flamdoodles the moronic word "Majorly" and sentences anyone who uses it to be burned at the stake, drawn and quartered, and painfully disintegrated atom by atom!   $:)

A list of the ways to misspell most of the words in the English language, as gleaned from the examinations I have corrected for the last 7 days from high schools from every part of America, would take up too many terabytes.

But some are just incredible:

"opoin" = opinion

"distastation" = devastation (or so we believe)

"dafinnitly" = definitely

"throught" = throughout

"survile" = survival (again, we think: "servile" did not work in context)

Thousands more are possible: on top of this is the ILLEGIBLE and execrable "handwriting" we struggled with daily: "handwriting" should be replaced by "paw-smearing" to be fair to the term!  But this is the whirlwind reaped by moron teachers and parents who have been telling me "throught" the years that "Oh, yeah, but with computers, who cares?"

Recent research shows how wrong these morons are: legible flowing penmanship is connected to faster reading and deeper comprehension, since it builds a discipline of attention to detail at an early age. 

Okay, enough grumbling for today!   0:)
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Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #681 on: June 18, 2009, 12:21:27 PM »
Cato, might I inquire as to what national examinations you were grading? (I hope this is not too personal a question; if so, please ignore!)

Having a 15-year-old makes me aware of the importance (real or imagined) of standardized tests, and he currently awaits results for two AP exams (US Government and Computer Science) and three SAT II tests (Latin, US History, and English Literature). I assure you he did not use the word "majorly" in any of these!

Joe Barron

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #682 on: June 18, 2009, 12:23:09 PM »
I've always had terrible handwriting. I've come to think of the computer as a kind of calligraphic prostheses. I don;t type very well, either, but at least the word processing software gives me the chance to correct and revise.

One word I've seen coming into vogue among kids is "funner" as the comparative form of "fun." This is wrong, of course, but there will come a time when it will not be. Indeed, I can think of no logical reason why the "er" comparative should not be applied to such a basic word.

When it comes to comparatives, English has always been an inconsistent cross between German, which uses "er" in all cases, and French, which uses "more" in all cases. Germans would say "intelligenter" where we would say more intelligent, and the French would say "plus comique" where we woud say "funnier." I feel sorry for people who have to learn English as a second language.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 12:25:54 PM by Joe Barron »

Offline Ten thumbs

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #683 on: June 19, 2009, 07:33:51 AM »
My composition, counterpoint, and orchestration teacher often used the word wronger. I think of him when I use it.'

I presume this means wronger than right, as opposed to righter than wrong.
A day may be a destiny; for life
Lives in but little—but that little teems
With some one chance, the balance of all time:
A look—a word—and we are wholly changed.

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #684 on: June 19, 2009, 12:53:10 PM »
Joe Barron is quite correct about the problems in the comparison of adjectives.  When all else fails, blame it on French!   8)

Ironic use of incorrect forms to make a point is allowed in Cato's grammar book!   0:)

But not if the speaker is thinking the form is correct!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #685 on: June 19, 2009, 01:31:25 PM »
Just the plain old Merriam-Webster brand comparative adjective. Wrongest is the superlative.

"It would be wrong to speed, but wronger to speed in a stolen car."'

That depends on your frame of reference (as do most things, nicht wahr?): if running from the law in an effort to avoid capture, then from the car thief's perspective it would be wrong not to speed.  ;)
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

Joe Barron

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #686 on: June 19, 2009, 02:03:34 PM »
Joe Barron is quite correct about the problems in the comparison of adjectives.  When all else fails, blame it on French!   8)

Ironic use of incorrect forms to make a point is allowed in Cato's grammar book!   0:)

But not if the speaker is thinking the form is correct!

Could we be any ironcer?

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Disconcerted by Disconcerting
« Reply #687 on: June 22, 2009, 08:36:02 AM »
Today's grumble comes from an all too true incident at a Verizon store populated by 20-somethings, who did not pay attention in school, but were told they are all winners instead of wieners, and who now labor for minimum wage under the delusion that they are all "high-tech" experts, when in reality all they have to do is put batteries in cell phones.

So...a few days ago my wife bought a recharger for our cell phones at this store.  When she opened the package, it bore the aroma of having been bought and returned: nothing inside seemed packed properly.

The recharger of course failed to charge or recharge anything except for our bank account.

So...today I am charged    :o    with the duty of returning the thing and dealing with the above 20-somethings.  I walk in and am greeted by a "phonily"  :o    merry 20-something male with a 40-pound sack of French fries hanging over his belt:

"Hi!  How ya doin' t'day?"
I : "Not too well, actually.  Where do I return defective merchandise?"
He: "Return what?"
I: (believing I used too many syllables to communicate: also possible is that he is practically deafer than my dead great-grandfather because of too many Norwegian Gruesome Slasher Death Rock Riots): "Stuff that doesn't work."
He: "Oh, uh, let's see.  Tyler over there is free right now." 

Of course: it had to be a Tyler, one of the worst possible names to hang around a manchild's neck!

Tyler is another plump but obsequious 20-something:

Tyler: "Hey!  What can we do for ya?"
I: "I would like to return this defective phone charger.  My wife bought it a few days ago.  It was disconcerting because it obviously had already been returned because it is defective."
Tyler: (long pause - I do talk a little fast) "It was disconnected?"
I: "No, I said receiving this was disconcerting."
Tyler: (looking at the charger in confusion) "Uh, so, uh, do you mean it doesn't work?"
I: "Right, it doesn't work, and somebody here knew it and put it back out for sale.  That's why it was disconcerting!  (spoken slowly).  Your store has wasted our time!"

So Tyler, I assume, learned a new word today!   0:)

Yes, the new charger does work nicely!   $:)

Mystery question: What kind of Disconcerting Music do you hear at a Disconcert?   :o

"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Disconcerted by Disconcerting
« Reply #688 on: June 22, 2009, 08:43:08 AM »
Today's grumble comes from an all too true incident at a Verizon store populated by 20-somethings, who did not pay attention in school, but were told they are all winners instead of wieners, and who now labor for minimum wage under the delusion that they are all "high-tech" experts, when in reality all they have to do is put batteries in cell phones.
   ;D  ;D

Is that like laboring under the delusion that they are experts on politics and economics because they have a strong feeling that they're right about how things are and ought to be--and that's confirmed by the websites and cable channels and entertainers that tell them what to think?
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

Offline Opus106

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #689 on: June 22, 2009, 08:51:14 AM »
Mystery question: What kind of Disconcerting Music do you hear at a Disconcert?   :o

It is something written by a decomposer.
Regards,
Navneeth

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #690 on: June 22, 2009, 08:56:33 AM »
It is something written by a decomposer.
Like Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead?  (Wonder how he feels about it now...?)
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #691 on: June 22, 2009, 09:29:16 AM »
So, uh, did you mean it doesn't work?  ;D ::) 8)

Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #692 on: June 22, 2009, 11:38:36 AM »
Ding ding ding ding!! We have a winner!!

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #693 on: June 22, 2009, 05:26:47 PM »
Ding ding ding ding!! We have a winner!!


Amen!   0:)

Mr. Apostrophe wins a Poynter Sisters/BeeGees/Donna Summer CD!!!   :o

If we were giving anything away, which...we are not doing.   8)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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

Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #694 on: June 22, 2009, 06:06:44 PM »

Amen!   0:)

Mr. Apostrophe wins a Poynter Sisters/BeeGees/Donna Summer CD!!!   :o

If we were giving anything away, which...we are not doing.   8)

I now have the Pointer Sisters' I'm So Excited playing on the radio in my head.... gee, thanks a lot!!



:D

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #695 on: June 26, 2009, 08:54:10 AM »
I love how bureaucrats feel that they can escape any scandal without blame simply by using the horrible phrase "in retrospect".

The child is now dead, their life is in retrospect, it's not as if a living child is being hurt right now - stop talking about the past and leave us alone to pretend to make some changes to the system! $:)
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #696 on: June 26, 2009, 10:18:48 AM »
I love how bureaucrats feel that they can escape any scandal without blame simply by using the horrible phrase "in retrospect".

The child is now dead, their life is in retrospect, it's not as if a living child is being hurt right now - stop talking about the past and leave us alone to pretend to make some changes to the system! $:)
Ted Kennedy's drunk driving felony manslaughter of Mary Jo Kopechne, his leaving the scene of the accident without calling for assistance, his failure to report it to the authorities, and his wrist-slap two-month suspended sentence (issued in a closed hearing) due to his political clout and his family's wealth, in retrospect, could probably have been handled better.
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #697 on: June 26, 2009, 10:50:09 AM »
Quote from: Steven Spielberg
Just as there will never be another Fred Astaire or Chuck Berry or Elvis Presley, there will never be anyone comparable to Michael Jackson. His talent, his wonderment and his mystery make him legend.

Not quite sure about that final encomium, but his talent, wonderment and mystery have certainly made Spielberg forget the value of the indefinite article . . . .

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Harder to Prosecute???
« Reply #698 on: June 29, 2009, 07:13:52 AM »
A quote from the Washington Post today from an article about a Supreme Court decision about reverse discrimination:

"The ruling could alter employment practices nationwide and make it harder to prove discrimination when there is no evidence it was intentional."

(My Emphasis above)

See: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/29/AR2009062901608_pf.html

So the implication is that lawyers can still prove discrimination with no evidence thereof !!!   :o   It is just "harder" to do so!

Can lawyers prove discrimination when there is no evidence that it was unintentional?   ???

Should lawyers be allowed to prove anything with no evidence?   $:)  (Cato is taking the word "no" in its absolute meaning: no evidence of any kind!)

Welcome to Cloud KafkaLand!   0:)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #699 on: June 29, 2009, 07:47:04 AM »
Hah!  8)