Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Printer Friendly - Home
Page: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]


BS: Language Pet Peeves part II

Backwoodsman 06 Jan 24 - 07:01 AM
Steve Shaw 06 Jan 24 - 07:48 AM
MaJoC the Filk 06 Jan 24 - 09:31 AM
MaJoC the Filk 06 Jan 24 - 09:56 AM
Backwoodsman 06 Jan 24 - 10:30 AM
Dave the Gnome 06 Jan 24 - 10:43 AM
Thompson 06 Jan 24 - 11:18 AM
Mrrzy 06 Jan 24 - 01:54 PM
Doug Chadwick 06 Jan 24 - 04:21 PM
Steve Shaw 06 Jan 24 - 05:06 PM
Dave the Gnome 06 Jan 24 - 05:32 PM
Backwoodsman 06 Jan 24 - 05:37 PM
Doug Chadwick 06 Jan 24 - 05:54 PM
Steve Shaw 06 Jan 24 - 06:56 PM
Mrrzy 06 Jan 24 - 08:12 PM
Dave the Gnome 07 Jan 24 - 03:56 AM
Thompson 07 Jan 24 - 07:25 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Jan 24 - 07:48 AM
Lighter 07 Jan 24 - 09:22 AM
Mrrzy 07 Jan 24 - 09:29 AM
MaJoC the Filk 07 Jan 24 - 10:40 AM
MaJoC the Filk 07 Jan 24 - 10:56 AM
MaJoC the Filk 07 Jan 24 - 11:29 AM
Dave the Gnome 07 Jan 24 - 11:41 AM
BobL 07 Jan 24 - 12:56 PM
Steve Shaw 07 Jan 24 - 03:33 PM
Joe_F 07 Jan 24 - 05:30 PM
MaJoC the Filk 08 Jan 24 - 10:31 AM
Thompson 08 Jan 24 - 12:07 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 24 - 06:28 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 24 - 07:16 PM
leeneia 08 Jan 24 - 11:25 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 24 - 06:19 AM
Lighter 09 Jan 24 - 07:54 AM
Thompson 11 Jan 24 - 07:57 AM
Dave the Gnome 11 Jan 24 - 08:14 AM
Steve Shaw 11 Jan 24 - 10:58 AM
meself 12 Jan 24 - 11:46 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 24 - 11:54 AM
Backwoodsman 12 Jan 24 - 11:57 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 24 - 11:57 AM
Mrrzy 12 Jan 24 - 01:34 PM
Doug Chadwick 12 Jan 24 - 01:46 PM
Backwoodsman 12 Jan 24 - 02:01 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 24 - 03:35 PM
Doug Chadwick 12 Jan 24 - 03:55 PM
Mrrzy 12 Jan 24 - 04:16 PM
MaJoC the Filk 12 Jan 24 - 04:49 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 24 - 06:00 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 24 - 06:02 PM

Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum Child
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:













Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 07:01 AM

“The bowler is Holding, the batsman’s Willey” ;-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 07:48 AM

Sadly, Johnners never actually said that, though we all wish he had!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 09:31 AM

Johnners was commentating [sometime in the first century before Under Armour] when the batsman received the fifth ball of the over in a rather unkind part of his anatomy. He hobbled around the wicket awhile, then rather gamely elected to continue, at which Johnners said "And there's one ball left". Collapse of Bill Frindall.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 09:56 AM

Argh. Someone on Radio Four* has just said "powerful", and I've just realised it was meant as "I accept you have just said something important, and I can't think of anything to say, but there's other callers, so let's move on".

* Ten bonus points (fifty for left-pondians) for naming the phone-in.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 10:30 AM

”Sadly, Johnners never actually said that”

No less funny for that though.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 10:43 AM

Was the infamous snooker comment "For those of you watching in black and white, the green is the one behind the pink" not real either?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Thompson
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 11:18 AM

I hold strong on may and might. Always.

Depict: the Roman invasion of Britain.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Mrrzy
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 01:54 PM

May is have permission, as in, Mother may I. Might is possible, as in mother might say yes.

Is that it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 04:21 PM

Is that it?

(i) Present tense vs Past Perfect:-

    Something may happen.
    Something might have happened.

(ii) Higher vs lower probability:-

    Something may happen. (higher)
    Something might happen. (lower)

(iii) Asking for vs giving permission:-

    May/might I do something? (either will do)
    Yes, you may.


DC


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 05:06 PM

Well that's all great, but you're going to scare people into never wanting to open their mouths! Language is wot people speak, not wot the grammar police dictate.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 05:32 PM

I have to stop myself from correcting 'can I' to 'may I'. It was hammered into me and old habits die hard but ffs - everyone knows what someone means when they say 'can I'. Don't they?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 05:37 PM

Here in The Backwoods, ‘can I’ and ‘may I’ are accepted by the vast majority as interchangeable. The evolution of language…


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 05:54 PM

Well that's all great, but you're going to scare people into never wanting to open their mouths!


The question was asked. I simply provided an answer.

I have always held that the only requirement for good communication is that it should be clear and unambiguous, but this thread is specifically about the misuse of language that annoys people. If I remember correctly, it was your good self, Steve, who resurrected this thread in its Mk II version.

I would lay a pound to a penny that you know what word I would like to bring up when you complain about people dictating to others but I am going to resist the temptation.

DC


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 06:56 PM

Well that resurrection happened at a very confusing time on Mudcat, Doug. My first few posts on the resurrected version are all very mild. and the whole thread for the last couple of months has been benign and free-rambling.

Nah then, Doug. You love to try to catch me out and that much I relish. But when it comes to the quirkiness of our beautiful but complex language, my record, if you'd care to trawl, suggests that I'm consistently on the side of ordinary users of our native tongue and that I care not a jot for casual human errors. I also consider that we should accept that the evolution of language is always in the hands of the billions of ordinary users and never in the hands of the grammar police. There are some red lines, of course. There are some errors that can't be excused as being in the realms of linguistic evolution but which should always be called out as simply pig-ignorant. Alternate for alternative (I blame the Monkees). Building to a crescendo. Awful stuff, those two. Most of all, the pretentious: at this moment in time. On a daily basis. Prior to. Albeit.

But singling out people for "misusing" may/might, less/fewer, who/whom, etc., unless the context is formal writing, is just nit-picking. No-one says you're wrong, but lots of people might ask why you bother. And, as I said, the last thing we need to be doing is to make people scared of opening their mouths lest they annoy the grammar police.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Mrrzy
Date: 06 Jan 24 - 08:12 PM

I wish I may I wish I might


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 03:56 AM

I can think of a phrase where may and might can be used together

Brian May might


I'll get my coat...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Thompson
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 07:25 AM

It's not a question of scolding people for misusages. May and might have different meanings, and wiping out might lessens the language.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 07:48 AM

You could say the same about uninterested/disinterested. I think there's a useful distinction between them but so many people use them interchangeably that we might as well admit that the fight may have been lost (see what I did there...?). Once when I was a form teacher, compiling the class reports from their subject teachers, I sent one back to the PE teacher who had written "This boy is disinterested in sport." The PE teacher refused to change it, and the headmaster, a graduate of Cambridge in English, backed him up!   

I'll never give up on alternate and alternative, though...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Lighter
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 09:22 AM

"The language" has been "lessened" in various ways since the demise of Old English with no clearly deleterious effect. For every "lessening" there are innumerable additions and refinements.

The enforcement of the "may" and "might" rule is now pointless. Nobody is confused or misled by the "misuse," and, should they be, their interlocutor or editor can ask what precisely is meant.

Prescriptivism is usually a lost cause anyway, since by the time an alteration in usage becomes widely noticeable, it's generally too late to do anything about it.

Nor are the "misuser"s eager to accept correction.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 09:29 AM

Also amoral and immoral. Not the same, in jargon, but similar in usage. Misusage, ok.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 10:40 AM

"The green is behind the pink": Confirmed: it was on Pot Black. I've seen the repeat.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 10:56 AM

"At this present moment in time": like "going forward", it's a simple space-filler, originally intended to give upper management the illusion that something's being said. Real Soon Now, I'll try to get hold of John Barry's Technobabble, which documents such linguistic atrocities, but it may well be out of print by now.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 11:29 AM

"May vs "might": it's part of a worrying cascade misconception about probabilities; it's most likely to occur when the chances of this are vanishingly small, but the fallout is extreme.

This happening is next to impossible.
We cannot eliminate the possibility of this happening.
This happening is unlikely [so if it does happen, it hits the headlines].
This might happen.
This may happen.
This happening is likely.
We cannot eliminate the possibility that this will not happen.
This happening is next to inevitable.

In the first lecture of probability theory, a probability of 1 was defined (to much laughter) as "almost certain", and 0 as "almost never".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 11:41 AM

Worth looking up the bullshit generator. Always good for a laugh when you can drop one of the phrases into a report or meeting.


Yes I did. More than once :-D


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: BobL
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 12:56 PM

A probability of 1 was defined (to much laughter) as "almost certain", and 0 as "almost never".

That's almost reasonable, no level of precision has been assigned to those values.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 03:33 PM

We should hang on to amoral/immoral, I think.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Joe_F
Date: 07 Jan 24 - 05:30 PM

BobL: Other way around. "Almost certain" (as a technical term in probability theory) is defined as "with probability 1". A randomly chosen real number in a given interval is almost certainly irrational.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 08 Jan 24 - 10:31 AM

Another angle: replace "0" by "negligibly small" with a hint of "we haven't ever seen it", and correspondingly for "1". Seeing one flying pig tells you they can fly after all; it takes at least two sightings on different days before you can start thinking about the cost-effectiveness of buying an umbrella.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Thompson
Date: 08 Jan 24 - 12:07 PM

Also disinterested (with no personal stake in) vs uninterested (bleagh, who cares).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 24 - 06:28 PM

...But so many people use them interchangeably...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 24 - 07:16 PM

Sometimes you see words used that seem to have been used pretentiously, or just downright incorrectly. Three such that really get my goat in some contexts are enormity, epoch and normalcy. Then you look them up and find that what bugs you can actually be perfectly correct. If I see "look at the enormity of that elephant," or "my childhood was an important epoch in my life," I emit growls. But investigation reveals that both those are correct. Well you may convince me that they're correct but you won't convince me that they're fine. And what's with the horrendous "normalcy?" It's not wrong but I simply never want to see it!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: leeneia
Date: 08 Jan 24 - 11:25 PM

Today gave me two examples of journalists wriggling out of a reporting

"Sam Bankman Fried shares why FTX flopped" (Daily Mail) So the problem wasn't embezzlement, foolish trading, and lack of record-keeping by humans. Supposedly FTX, an exchange of sorts, just did it by itself.
=======================

Low-class congresswoman Lauren Boebert got in an altercation with her ex-husband in a restaurant in Silt, Colorado, and the local Fox News reported that "authorities were called."

This is classic use of the passive voice to obscure facts. Who called the police? Is this candidate a woman being stalked, or is she a perpetrator of domestic violence?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 24 - 06:19 AM

Ah yes, the good old passive voice, a vital tool in the box for weasel-worders:

It's said by many people that....
It's been reported by a number of sources that...
It's claimed by medical experts that...
It's emerged that...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Lighter
Date: 09 Jan 24 - 07:54 AM

Often better than the passive voice is simply "They say" or "They did," without saying who "they" are.

If "they" is too obviously a weasel, use "people" or "many people" or some similarly opaque variant.

The benefit is that "they" and "people" emphasize human agency, making the claim more vivid, while the passive doesn't. What's more, it's easier to mislead with "they" and "people," since the passive voice at least declares clearly what was done, but "they" and "people" give no clue as to whom is referred to (maybe nobody).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Thompson
Date: 11 Jan 24 - 07:57 AM

Then there's the automotive passive voice, used in news reports: "Pedestrian hit by car".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Jan 24 - 08:14 AM

When visiting Bayeux we witnessed an old lady getting annoyed with a car in her way so she set about it with a baguette!

Car hit by pedestrian? :-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 Jan 24 - 10:58 AM

Headline in this week's Bude and Stratton Post: "Car collides with garden"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: meself
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 11:46 AM

I'm hesitant to bring up matters of pronunciation on an international forum, but I am curious about whether people in other places have noticed any changing pronunciations of certain polysyllabic words. A couple that come to mind: "advertisement" and "pianist". When I was growing up in Canada, the only pronunciation I heard for "advertisement" was "ad-VER-tiz-ment" - now all I ever hear is "ad-ver-TIZE-ment". "Pianist" was always "PEE-an-ist"; now I hear "pee-YAN-ist" all the time.

I will (or will not) provide more examples as they come to me (or not). I know there are about half-a-dozen that I hear frequently these days, and there seem to be more all the time. And, yes, they are 'pet peeves' which I will make no attempt to justify.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 11:54 AM

Eye-ran. Nucular.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 11:57 AM

I have a similar peeve with ‘maintenance’ which always used to be pronounced ‘MAIN-ten-ance’ (it still is by me) but which I frequently hear in my neck of the Backwoods pronounced nowadays as ‘men-TAIN-ance’. Grrrrr!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 11:57 AM

Apropos of pretentious stuff to do with food: compote. A medley of vegetables. Jus. Pan-fried.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Mrrzy
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 01:34 PM

Au jus is ok. With au jus is not.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 01:46 PM

My pet peeve:- overuse of the word "pretentious".

DC


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 02:01 PM

Eye-bee-fah. (Are you reading this, Rylan?).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 03:35 PM

So, Doug, you don't think that "jus" for thick gravy, "compote" for a bowl of sour and mushed-up boiled fruit pulp and a "medley of vegetables" for a rapidly-going-cold pot of over-boiled broccoli, carrots and frozen peas is pretentious? Well, as a down-to-earth northern lad, you do surprise me. You'll be calling a spade a manually-operated bladed digging implement next!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 03:55 PM

I don't give it much thought at all, Steve. I am just sick of hearing the word through its overuse to describe other perfectly good words, elsewhere in the 'Pet Peeve' threads.

DC


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Mrrzy
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 04:16 PM

Jus isn't gravy. Using jus for jus is merely accurate. Using jus for gravy is incorrect, not necessarily (but probably) pretentious.

A medley is a medley. Overcooking it doesn't make it not a medley.

What you're complaining about, Steve, doesn't seem to be the words themselves, but that bad cooks use them.

That's a cooking peeve, rather than a language one.

Yesterday's menu said Red wine reduction. I got brown gravy. Not pretentious, but bad cooking.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 04:49 PM

> Yesterday's menu said Red wine reduction. I got brown gravy.

That's not bad cooking: it's an offence under the Trades Description Act. A "red wine reduction" is a price cut on (what I insist on calling) plonque rouge de la maison.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 06:00 PM

Heheh.

I know what a medley is supposed to mean on restaurant menus. It's plainly an attempt to big up stuff that's actually very plain, wot I could do in my steamer in eight minutes. In my house, a medley of veg means something to go with my meat, Yorkshire puddings and roast spuds. "Jus" a la UK is a form of gravy with red wine in it that's been cleaned of all its tasty bits and boiled up until it's no longer the stuff you want on your roast chicken. "Compote" is mushed-up soft fruit that wouldn't have cut the mustard had the fruit been left whole. The stuff you can make out of the raspberries that have been in your freezer for a couple of years and which don't really look much like raspberries any more. In my house, if I called any of this stuff "medley," "jus" or "compote," I'd get a really good laugh.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves part II
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 24 - 06:02 PM

I know what you mean, Doug, albeit I never agree, not even on a daily basis, though, prior to your comments in this thread, I wouldn't have made an argument going forward, if you will.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate


Next Page

 


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.



Mudcat time: 16 June 3:01 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 2022 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.