Author Topic: Cato's Grammar Grumble  (Read 554338 times)

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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #720 on: July 04, 2009, 03:53:25 PM »
Whit?
Folk in Aberdeen say "Edmund Roobra?"  That sounds more like a North East English pronunciation.  I think in Aberdeen (Scotland) if they said "Edmund Rubra" to you, you'd be pulling out your fists thinking they'd said something rude.   :-\

Every rube in northeast England will no doubt agree!   :D 

And from Karl Henning:

"Stay Awake
Take a Break
For Safety Sake"

Our tax dollars at work on the road and in the schools!   $:)
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Offline Sydney Grew

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #721 on: July 04, 2009, 04:32:49 PM »
Why we wonder do the labouring classes of northern America feel the obligation to say "swell" when they really mean "good"? What numinous fear is it that holds them back from the Real Thing?
Rule 1: assiduously address the what not the whom! Rule 2: shun bad language! Rule 3: do not deviate! Rule 4: be as pleasant as you can!

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #722 on: July 04, 2009, 05:10:11 PM »
Our tax dollars at work on the road and in the schools!   $:)

I'm grumbling for want of for safety's sake.

Offline John Copeland

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble - Swell, A severe case scenario
« Reply #723 on: July 04, 2009, 05:39:00 PM »
"Swell" has a nice rising to it.  
But, it is a silly word because nothing is swelling at all.
John:  "Here's that $100 I owe you."  
A Cato the Elder Student: "Swell!"

Swell?  What, in fact, is swelling?  The $100 I just handed over to Catos student?  The air?  A large crustescean in the students belly after dinner at the local sushi bar where he discussed the latin for fish?  Is it the students mind, is that what is swelling in this scenario?  And what has the function of swelling has to do with the hundered dollars?  At the end of the day, nothing is swell, not even $100.    :(

Well.  Next time I give someone a hundred dollars, they might say "Dandelions" or "Trumpetscrews" - it's real-time meaning and impact will be the same as "Swell."

Still, I like "Swell."  It has a sincerity about it. :o

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #724 on: July 04, 2009, 11:35:17 PM »
Swell is underrated. Groovy has also nosedived in popularity despite being far more recent. I think 'cool' killed it off :(
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Scarpia

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #725 on: July 05, 2009, 06:11:13 AM »
Swell is an odd word.  In old war movies you will see soldiers refer to their heroic commanding officer as "a swell guy."  By the 60's 6 year olds were routinely referring to their favorite marble as "swell."  Now it is normally only used if you want to seem deliberately archaic or quaint.

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #726 on: July 05, 2009, 05:07:18 PM »
Or in those '40s and '50s movies, spoken by adolescents, following closely on the heels of the word "Gee." (an interesting word in itself -- a euphemism, Jesus->gee-whiz->Cheez-Whiz!)'


 >:D   The Devil's Fromage!   >:D
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #727 on: July 05, 2009, 10:32:28 PM »
"...That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

This --- and indeed the whole rest of it --- is a poem in prose,compared with the "style" of contemporary political documents. ;D
"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

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Offline John Copeland

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #728 on: July 06, 2009, 02:17:33 AM »
This --- and indeed the whole rest of it --- is a poem in prose,compared with the "style" of contemporary political documents. ;D

Cheez, that sure is swell!

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #729 on: July 06, 2009, 05:02:28 AM »
This --- and indeed the whole rest of it --- is a poem in prose,compared with the "style" of contemporary political documents. ;D

Many thanks for the comment!

"Style" in writing (and in speaking) by American politicians began fading away after Theodore Roosevelt!  Franklin Roosevelt also had his moments of course, but does anyone read e.g. the books of Nixon or Carter or Billy Jeff Clinton to find great examples of style?   :o

Hopping down the punny trail:

We recently saw new signs in an adjoining suburb warning us of a "Speed Bump" ahead.  Here in Ohio's central city that is the proper term.

But this reminded us of Atlanta, Georgia, USA, where similar signs could be found: one area had signs calling them "Traffic Calming Devices," which is beyond satire: maybe the bureaucrats get paid by the word.   8)

Worse, however, was another area with signs saying "Speed Hump" which I always thought was a one-way ticket to a divorce court!   $:)



"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 #730 on: July 06, 2009, 05:07:10 AM »
Traffic Calming Devices !! Probably, my Heedless Watermelon could use one of those . . . .

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #731 on: July 06, 2009, 05:10:56 AM »
re. "Traffic Calming Devices"

Stun gun, svp.
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #732 on: July 06, 2009, 05:34:54 AM »
does anyone read e.g. the books of Nixon or Carter or Billy Jeff Clinton to find great examples of style?   :o

Did they write books?  :o
"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

 --- Claude Debussy

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #733 on: July 06, 2009, 05:42:11 AM »
Did they write books?  :o

Nixon is the author listed for titles such as Leaders, Beyond Peace, Seize the Moment, In the Arena, and of course, his Memoirs.

Carter, listed for Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, and We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work.

Clinton, Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World and an autobiography.

Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #734 on: July 06, 2009, 05:50:56 AM »
Nixon is the author listed for titles such as Leaders, Beyond Peace, Seize the Moment, In the Arena, and of course, his Memoirs.

Carter, listed for Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, and We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work.

Clinton, Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World and an autobiography.

Many thanks. The titles themselves speak volumes... I especially like Carter's second and Clinton's first. :D
"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

 --- Claude Debussy

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #735 on: July 06, 2009, 06:01:36 AM »
Many thanks. The titles themselves speak volumes...

 ;)

(Fair disclosure: I haven't read any of them.)

Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: Style And Idiocy
« Reply #736 on: July 06, 2009, 06:13:51 AM »
;)

(Fair disclosure: I haven't read any of them.)

If I needed a good Science Fiction book I wouldn't turn to Jimmy Carter, that's for sure.  ;D
"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

 --- Claude Debussy

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #737 on: July 06, 2009, 07:00:31 AM »
OTOH, if Carter wrote a book speculating on how Mozart supposedly didn't write his own music . . . that one, I'd read.

 8)

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #738 on: July 06, 2009, 07:59:47 AM »
OTOH, if Carter wrote a book speculating on how Mozart supposedly didn't write his own music . . . that one, I'd read.

 8)

Wait!  Doesn't everyone know already that Mozart was actually Moe Zart, part-time baker and full-time stooge for the notorious Viennese parvenu and whipped-cream thief Ludwig Leiserlauter aka Lewd Louie aka Lou the 'Lude aka Louis the Wig aka Lou da Dude Wit' 'tude?
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Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #739 on: July 07, 2009, 06:18:09 AM »
Swell is an odd word.  In old war movies you will see soldiers refer to their heroic commanding officer as "a swell guy."  By the 60's 6 year olds were routinely referring to their favorite marble as "swell."  Now it is normally only used if you want to seem deliberately archaic or quaint.


A famous toy company in the 1950's had this slogan:  "You can tell it's Mattel: it's swell!"

And then there is "swell" as a noun, meaning a rich person, or at least stylishly dressed:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YU3robyaNAY


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

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