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Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?

GUEST,leeneia 12 Jul 05 - 01:17 PM
PoppaGator 12 Jul 05 - 01:23 PM
GUEST,leeneia 12 Jul 05 - 01:29 PM
Wesley S 12 Jul 05 - 01:30 PM
GUEST 12 Jul 05 - 01:31 PM
Highlandman 12 Jul 05 - 01:32 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Jul 05 - 01:35 PM
katlaughing 12 Jul 05 - 01:51 PM
Amos 12 Jul 05 - 01:53 PM
GUEST,leeneia 12 Jul 05 - 05:49 PM
katlaughing 12 Jul 05 - 05:55 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Jul 05 - 06:09 PM
GUEST,Clutha 12 Jul 05 - 09:42 PM
Kaleea 12 Jul 05 - 10:05 PM
Amos 12 Jul 05 - 10:06 PM
khandu 12 Jul 05 - 10:15 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Jul 05 - 11:37 PM
Arkie 13 Jul 05 - 12:13 AM
GUEST,leeneia 13 Jul 05 - 09:23 AM
vega 13 Jul 05 - 11:46 AM
Azizi 13 Jul 05 - 12:26 PM
Wesley S 13 Jul 05 - 01:09 PM
Kim C 13 Jul 05 - 01:10 PM
Big Al Whittle 13 Jul 05 - 01:20 PM
Ebbie 13 Jul 05 - 01:59 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 05 - 05:18 PM
GUEST,leeneia 13 Jul 05 - 05:57 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 13 Jul 05 - 06:30 PM
Azizi 13 Jul 05 - 06:38 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 05 - 08:07 PM
Alice 13 Jul 05 - 08:36 PM
open mike 13 Jul 05 - 11:53 PM
Celtaddict 14 Jul 05 - 02:32 AM
Celtaddict 14 Jul 05 - 03:11 AM
Kaleea 14 Jul 05 - 04:50 AM
Cheaspeake Sailor 14 Jul 05 - 06:16 AM
Snuffy 14 Jul 05 - 09:07 AM
PoppaGator 14 Jul 05 - 09:29 AM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Jul 05 - 08:11 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 14 Jul 05 - 08:42 PM
GUEST,leeneia 15 Jul 05 - 12:13 AM
Azizi 15 Jul 05 - 01:27 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Jul 05 - 11:49 AM
Jim Dixon 20 Jul 05 - 09:04 AM
Dave the Gnome 20 Jul 05 - 09:56 AM
GUEST,Santa 20 Jul 05 - 10:24 AM
R. Padgett 20 Jul 05 - 11:29 AM
Tannywheeler 20 Jul 05 - 01:24 PM
katlaughing 20 Jul 05 - 02:03 PM
Le Scaramouche 20 Jul 05 - 04:10 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Jul 05 - 04:14 PM
GUEST 20 Jul 05 - 08:49 PM
GUEST,leeneia 21 Jul 05 - 11:17 AM
Highlandman 21 Jul 05 - 04:55 PM
GUEST 22 Jul 05 - 12:03 PM
GUEST,leeneia 22 Jul 05 - 12:41 PM
Tannywheeler 22 Jul 05 - 01:44 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:17 PM

I was finishing up a rowboat ride with some friends, and I had occasion to ask "Is that your hat?"

This brought to mind a song I heard once, "The Long, Tall Texan." The version I remember differs some from what I find on the Net. The last verse goes:

Oh, I'm a long, tall Texan, and I enforce the law.
(He rides through Texas to enforce the law.)
repeat
People tum-tee-tee and they say to me
"Hoo-ray, hoo-rah, are y'all the law?"

My question is, is this use of y'all to refer to one person authentic? I have seen plural forms (ye, Sie) indicate formal address at times. Is that what's going on here, or did the composer just find it more fun to sing "y'all"?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: PoppaGator
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:23 PM

Lots of people say "y'all" when referring to a single individual.

In general, these are not people who much care about grammatical precision in their speech. It is undoubtedly "incorrect" in some technical sense, granted, but then any context in which "y'all" is used at all is emphatically informal and cooloquial, to say the least, and this usage is fairly widespread.

In other words, this is not something the songwriter came up with on his own, and it is certainly not something that would seem incongruous in the folk culture being portrayed. It's quite natural and usual to address an individual as "y'all."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:29 PM

Oh good.

Now, does anybody know what the real words are where I have "tum tee tee"? It seems to me there was a nice internal rhyme there.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Wesley S
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:30 PM

Yes - Y'all can be singular OR plural. Another acceptable plural version of y'all is "all y'all". I'm not kidding. It's considered proper usage here in Texas.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:31 PM

http://www.doesthisblogmakemybuttlookbig.com/2004/03/yall_singular_o.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You

http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Farm/7478/plr-yall.htm

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/k/kinkyfried146074.html


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Highlandman
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:32 PM

PoppaGator, from my observations I'd say it depends on the locale. I've heard it used as you say, but here in the upstate of SC "y'all" seems to be almost never used for a single person. But that's being real picky, and in general terms I don't think the song lyrics would raise anybody's eyebrows.
-HM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:35 PM

I once had a Texan, jokingly, tell me that proper usage was yo', y'all, and all yo' all. Later she referred to me as y'all (but she was including my wife, who wasn't there- "Y'all come").
Webster's Collegiate Dictionary:
you-all- "usu. used in addressing two or more persons or sometimes one person as representing also another or others."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: katlaughing
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:51 PM

The Beach Boys havethe following in their lyrics:

Well I'm a long tall texan
I enforce justice for the law
(he rides from texas to enforce the law)

Well people look at me and say
Hurrah hurrah are you the law?
(he rides from texas to enforce the law)

click here

Lyle Lovett has them a bit different: click here

I use it, informally, in the plural, but might sometimes mean it for an individual. I also punctuate it differently.

tks ya'll

kat


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Amos
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 01:53 PM

There is no grammatically correct usage for "y'all", but those who use it wouldn't give a hoot about that anyway!!

It is used in a vaguely indicative singular form,meaning "you as an acquaintance or stranger or slightly distant individual". I have never heard it used to address a close friend or intimate connection.

It is of course used for plurals, collective and plurals of plural.

A


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 05:49 PM

Sure there's a grammatically correct usage for y'all. It does the job for English that ihr does in German, and "ye" used to do in English. Ye was the plural you, and thou was the singular.

(Later ye took on different meanings.)

My husband used to work in Alabama, and he noticed the all-y'all construction there. Perhaps it's used when more than one y'all is called for. More data are needed.

Amos has never heard it used to address a close friend or intimate connection. So perhaps there is an element of the formal in y'all.

Thanks for the Beach Boy and Lovett lyrics.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: katlaughing
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 05:55 PM

I use ya'll for close poi-son-all friends all dah time! Of course, they know I am a writer and know my grammar, but it's part of the fun of Mudcat and elsewhere that one may play around and not worry about such things so much.

Yer welcome for the lyrics.:->

kat


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 06:09 PM

Amos must be reflecting a local usage. I heard it all the time in referring to relatives and close friends on visits with my wife's relatives and friends (Central Georgia). And not just to outsiders like me who married into the family.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,Clutha
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 09:42 PM

I've been in Texas and loved it. Y'all seems to be in regular usage. My favourite story of the use of "Y'all" is that a friend who was a diver on off-shore Oil Rig and the Texan Supervisor mentioned that the diver (singular) should taker a break "y'all should take some time out". So, signalling all the other divers they, naturally surfaced and took time to have a break. Texan Supervisor was not best pleased to see every diver on boarsd the Rig and announced "Hey! when AAH said y'all take some time out.. I said y'all not all y'all" !!!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Kaleea
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 10:05 PM

Amos, evidently yew don't have the "TexOkArKanna Dictionary uv Correct Grammer, Spellin', and Punctuation Y'all!"    "Y'all" iz indeed singyewlar--as in onlee wun er two fellerz er galz. "All Y'all" iz most definately the plural of "All Y'all" except in thoze rare okayzhunz whin one sez "Yew'unz."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Amos
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 10:06 PM

LOL!! ALL y'all!! Ya gotta love it.

BTW when I said I'd never heard y'all used to address a close or intimate friend, I meant the singular form. If you're talking to BOTH your exes, of course you'd say "y'all".

:D


A


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: khandu
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 10:15 PM

We use "y'all" in our noraml comversations here. However, we always use it in reference to more than one person; never singular.

Occasionally we may say something like "How're y'all doing?" to an individual, but it is understood that we are referring to the individual & whomever he is with, or his family.

Yes, we will say "all y'all" from time to time.

k


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Jul 05 - 11:37 PM

Go to the Record Lady, Archives p. 13, and hear Porter Wagoner sing "Y'all Come.
And the Oak Ridge Boys with "Y'all Come Back Saloon."
Record Lady


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Arkie
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 12:13 AM

Having grown up in "Ya'll" country I have to say that I prefer it to "You guys" (often used when all the company addressed are not guys) and "Youse Guys". But then, there's no accounting for taste. In the part of Virginia where I grew up "Ya'll" was used by natives in the plural sense but "outside" folks having a little fun with the expression would use it in the singular form. One confusing factor could be that the term could be directed to a sole individual but the user and the individual would understand that it was an invitation to the family.

I read recently that "Ya'll" was derived from a Lowland Scot expression sounding somewhat similar.   Does anyone know if that is possibly true.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 09:23 AM

And so the search for missing pronouns goes on.

You know, English has not been logical in its treatment of pronouns. In Chaucer's time, "hir" did the job of "his", "hers" and "its". I've read that nobody even knows where "she" came from. And we still don't have an accepted pronoun for you-plural.

Thus (as y'all have mentioned) we have

you (unclear)
y'all
all y'all
y'uns
you guys
youse guys

In my opinion, people who sneer at these usages are snobs who don't really understand their own language - and its shortcomings.

But to get back to the Texas lawman of the song, I'm getting more and more convinced that he is addressed as "y'all" because he's a lawman, and "y'all" here is trying to convey the formal. It's like the situation with the Texas supervisor and the diver. The supervisor addressed the diver, who was not a personal friend, as "y'all" because it was a more formal usage.

I know there were many Germans in Texas once, and in German the formal you (Sie) is plural, whether or not one or more persons are being addressed. This concept (plural = formal) might have hung on.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: vega
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 11:46 AM

Arkie, it was suggested to me, once, by a very kindly gentleman, to say "You folks" instead of "you guys," the latter being what I grew up saying, mostly. So...I have tried to do so ever since, as it made sense to me.:-)


This was interesting about "she": [Middle English, probably alteration of Old English so, feminine demonstrative pron.. See so- in Indo-European Roots.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Azizi
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 12:26 PM

vega, as you may know, if you aren't Black, saying "You folks" to Black people is a definite no no.

Example "What do you folks want anyway?"-asked during the Civil Right period {and beyond?}

This "What do you folks want anyway?"phrase has so much negative, patronizing, "prove you" are worthy of rights baggage...

And I'd also suggest that people refrain from addressing African Americans you don't know by their first names without their prior permission...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Wesley S
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 01:09 PM

Interesting Azizi - I've never heard that about "you folks" before. And the thing about first names too. What really makes me sad is to hear { mostly younger } African Americans using the N word to each other. So many people struggled for so long so that they would never have to hear it again. It seems a shame.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Kim C
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 01:10 PM

Here in the Southern US, "y'all" and "all y'all" are acceptable usages and may be used to address anyone, including close personal friends.

Azizi, it is generally recognized as impolite to refer to ANYONE you don't know by their first name without prior permission.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 01:20 PM

yawl - carpenters use them, don't they...? Perhaps they don't in America as it would get confusing - as in....
anybody gotta yawl, y'all?
or
yawl, y'all is better than wall, worl

i think Winston Churchill said that.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Ebbie
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 01:59 PM

And a sailboat yawls, right? *G*


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 05:18 PM

"Yez" is another way of giving a plural to "you", now that has become effectively singular. Common in Ireland. Also heard as "yous", and my impression is that that is actually current in a lot of places, but it's one of those expressions people just don't notice, because it never gets written down.

Rather like the way people glibly talk about how "ye" is obsolete, and yet they say it every day of their lives (pronouncing it with a short e).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 05:57 PM

That's interesting, McGrath. That word "yez" - does it have a long e or short?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 06:30 PM

'Yez" ("Ye with plural inflection") is fairly old in print; 1804. In OED.

'ya' in slovenly argot, e. g. in "What ya want?," "Where ya goin'?"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Azizi
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 06:38 PM

"...it is generally recognized as impolite to refer to ANYONE you don't know by their first name without prior permission".

Hmmm, well it's been my experience and the experience of many other African Americans {documented in books; mentioned in group meetings and conferences on race relations & cultural sensitivity sessions etc.} that in some formal or professional settings some White people will try to get on a first name basis with Black clients {or parents of students} as a means of demonstrating that they accept 'minority' people as equals. However, for us {African American}this is interpreted as the White person showing a lack of respect to the Black person, {"treating them like kids"; not giving people their "propers", meaning the proper respect} It is also viewed as being fake/put-on friendliness.

Maybe White people move to dealing with people on a first name basis sooner than Black people do even among ourselves. It sure seems that way to me. What also has to be factored in is the slavery/post slavery historical experience in which Black men were called boy {still a BIG NO NO} and Black adults were not allowed to use the titles of Mr., Mrs. and Miss. Hence the "Uncle Remus"; "Uncle Ben", and "Aunt Jemima" characterizatiions. Given this history, for a White person to use a Black person's first name is interpreted as a failure to give that person the title he or she deserves-as I said this is seen as a sign of disrespect.

Making sure that White people know that they should not rush to use a Black person's first name is a core tenet in any course on USA cultural competency. If you say "Hi my name is Lou, what's yours?" and the Black guy says "Dr. Johnson" , don't take it personal.
In professional settings, Black people may NEVER want you to use their first name. In social settings the right to use first names is earned. In time, if you're cool, you may not only get to call that person by his or her first name, you might even get to call them by their nickname. LOL!

And another thing {while I'm talkin about BIG NO NOs}-Don't pat a Black person's head for good luck.

Don't EVER go there.


Azizi


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 08:07 PM

I find it very irritating and even threatening when a stranger leaps into using and reusing my first name, in a way that seems calculated. Especially people making cold-call phone calls!

My impression is that people trying sell you stuff deliberately try to use first names prematurely as a way of getting some kind of extra control. I imaginek they learn it from books on how to deal with the public, written I suspect by Americans, who seem to be particularly prone to leap into using first names anyway.

I think there are definite differences here between the British Isles (including Ireland) and the USA. White America anyway - from what Azizi writes it sounds as if Black Americans are a bit more like we are over here about things like this.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Alice
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 08:36 PM

PoppaGator, I like your word... "cooloquial".

Alice


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: open mike
Date: 13 Jul 05 - 11:53 PM

Laurie Lewis has been known to teach a class in Texonics at her concerts
where she explains the difference between "all Y'all " and "Y'all all"
The name for this is based on the language Eubonics which refers to black dialect. no offense intended.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Celtaddict
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 02:32 AM

I grew up deep in "y'all" country, with well educated parents who made it a point to resist the local accent they felt sounded less educated. (It's not just the UK side of the pond differentiating between Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins.) They, and we and our friends, considered "y'all" to be a contraction of "you all" or "all of you" and therefore always plural; when we wanted to be specifically most proper, we said "all of you" and in colloquial (I do not know if any of us were ever actually cool enough to be cooloquial) went more or less through the motions of saying "you all" which of course came out in ordinary speech as "y'all" anyway. I now live in a part of the country in which this plural for "you" is not used and considered rather comic, so make more of a point of saying "you all" or "all of you" because "you" is still indefinite in many contexts. I do not recall ever hearing "y'all" being used to mean one person, but of course if one is speaking to, say, a friend asking him to bring his family to the picnic, one would say "I hope y'all can come" to indicate the family was invited, not just "you" the individual. It is funny, isn't it, how we consider there must be a correct or proper way of using what we all agree to be an informal colloquial term?
By the way, my family refers to the typo or misspelled word that turns out to be better or more descriptive than the original as a "bonapropism" obviously in contradistinction to a malapropism. I have a friend who is a master at this. (Writing about a songwriter who is almost as impressive as a well-known Scot turned Australian: "His songs Bogle the mind.") I do admire "cooloquial."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Celtaddict
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 03:11 AM

And about those first names: I do not call people over, say, mid-teens or so by a first name unless they ask me to do so, but am very frequently told "Don't call me Ms. ---, it makes me feel old." It still feels very odd to me to address my patients as "Ms. ---" and have them call me by my first name; I still address most of the other physicians in my hospital by Dr. --- and always call them by title and surname in speaking with patients or staff. I also grew up with "Ma'am" and "Sir" and these were well enforced in years in the military, but I rarely hear these terms of address in this part of the country except from my own offspring occasionally. I have been told some people think the automatic use of first names suggests friendliness, and suppose this is why it is popular with salespeople, but I find it presumptuous and annoying. If an unknown person cold-calls me on the phone and addresses me or my husband by a first name, I tend to respond as if I assume it is a wrong number. "No, sorry, (click)."
Judith Martin (aka Miss Manners) points out there is a great deal of difference between
"Oh, Mrs. Wapshot . . ."
"Please, call me Sophie."
and
"Oh, Sophie . . ."
"Please call me Mrs. Wapshot."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Kaleea
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 04:50 AM

When I was quite young, my Irish Grandad sometimes allowed me to walk with him around town (a couple of blocks from one end to the other)"to town" ie the post office or dominoe parlor, the cafe/bait shop, the "crik" for fishin' & such. Whenever Grandad met up with ANYONE, they were always Mr., Mrs., or Miss so & so--man, woman or child. Quite simply, this was considered common courtesy. Common courtesy, as with common sense is uncommonly found in these times. To this day, I feel quite uncomfortable referring to strangers or older folks by their first names.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Cheaspeake Sailor
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 06:16 AM

My lady friend is originally from the Mobile area of Alabama, with many years spent in Texas. We discussed "y'all" and "all y'all" a while ago and she informed me that "y'all" is either singular or plural, and "all y'all" is never correct. She considers any use of "all y'all" comic or even mocking.

"Y'all" is often used when the word "you" could be omitted.
Y'all come over after dinner.
It's sometimes added at the end of a sentence.
Come on over after dinner, y'all.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Snuffy
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 09:07 AM

Yous (or youse) is fairly common in parts of Britain, as seen in the apocryphal tale of a Liverpool schoolteacher, who was very surprised to see the whole class on their feet when she said "Stand up, Hughes".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: PoppaGator
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 09:29 AM

I didn't mean to coin a new word "cooloquial" ~ it was just a typo, but now that you mention it, I like it! It's cool...

When I first read comments in this thread that "y'all" was in some sense "formal," I initially disagreed. But upon reflection, that idea does seem to make sense. Using "y'all" is deferential if not overly-polite or subservient, compared to the directly-in-your-face "you."

I think this confrontational aspect of the addressing someone as "you" is at the root of why members of a minority group accustomed to the use of "y'all" might bristle at the phrase "you people" (ouch!) or even the less immediately offensive "you folks."

(The suggestion that "you folks" provides a convenient and non-gendered alternative to "you(se) guys" seemed fine to me until Azizi set us straight.)

I certainly knew how to pronounce "yez" when McGrath mentioned it. It was very commonly used in the second-generation immigrant community (Irish/Italian/Polish) in which I grew up in New Jersey, where "y'all" had never been in common use. I've only learned more recently how common it is in Ireland. Pronunciation, of course, is "yiz," and the meaning is obviously the plural of "you" (like "youse," but contracted.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 08:11 PM

I think most people in this country might well take "y'all" as a lot more in-your-face than "you". And be taken aback to find "you" seen as confrontational on a visit to the States.

It all gets very confusing. I think the best rule in life is always to start from the assumption that strangers are not trying to put you down by their unfamiliar ways of talking. If they are it will become clear soon enough.
...............
'ya' in slovenly argot, e. g. in "What ya want?," "Where ya goin'?" (Q up the thread)

I think that is an example of "eye dialect", a term I found in an enjoyable book Accomodating Brocolli in the Cemetary:

"Eye dialect looks like dialect but sounds like standard spoken English when read aloud...It often suggests that the speaker is illiterate or ill-educated although they are actually speaking in the same way as everyone else"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 14 Jul 05 - 08:42 PM

McGrath, thanks for the interesting book review.

Reading through these threads, with all the contradictory usages and preferences, it is obvious that our speech is conditioned not only by our cocoon of associates, locale, and experiences, but by consciousness of what we are saying.

Just another sloven.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 15 Jul 05 - 12:13 AM

I like the term "eye dialect." For example, it always irritates me when people spell "was" as "wuz." No reason for it; it's just a way of sneering.

Loved the joke about the Liverpool teacher!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Azizi
Date: 15 Jul 05 - 01:27 AM

Hey, PoppaGator!

In your most recent post to this thread you wrote "The suggestion that "you folks" provides a convenient and non-gendered alternative to "you(se) guys" seemed fine to me until Azizi set us straight."

I know this isn't the thread on slang, and I think I know where you're coming from with that sentence. But in my neigborhood "setting someone straight" is more confrontational than I intended. "Being set straight" reminds me of a kid being lectured by an adult, or someone telling someone how it is and how it must be-or else.

That wasn't at all what I was trying to do and convey. My purpose in participating in this conversation was to share information about how I believe African Americans {in general} use, consider, and/or respond to certain words, phrases, and actions [when used by us and/or by others].

In the mid or late 1990s, there was a rather widely used slogan found in Black media, placed on tee-shirts, and circulated by other means within the African American community. The slogan was:

It's a Black thang.
You wouldn't understand.

-snip-

The "You" in that slogan is a collective referent to White people.

I never agreed with that slogan. It seems to me that increasing understanding among people of different races & ethnicities ranks up there just below "Love thy neighbor as yourself" Or maybe increasing interracial understanding is one way to "Love thy neighbor.."

I believe that online discussion forums such as Mudcat are one way that folks can increase understanding and eradicate racial and ethnic lines barriers.

Rather than say that I am setting people straight by posting on Mudcat, I would say that Mudcat offers me {as well as all other members and non-members} daily opportunities to share information, experiences and insights about my {our} culture{s}, and learn about other cultures.

And it's not just the information that is important to me-it's the people.

I love the fact that Mudcat helps people from all over the world meet & get to know each other. Mudcat also helps folks meet others who live or have lived in places that are very familiar.

How else would a former 'New Jerseyite' now living in Pittsburgh, PA have met a former 'New-Jerseyite' who now lives in New Orleans and who sometimes goes by the name "PoppaGator"?!

So here's a new slogan that I think is better than that old one: "The Internet-It's all about connecting!"


Peace!


Azizi


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Jul 05 - 11:49 AM

Leeneia, I remember a prof in English Lit (teaching in Texas) making a point that the correct pronunciation of was is 'was,' as in wahs, not wuz, as most of us pronounced it. Also, says is pronounced 'sais' (long a) not sez.
Is this what is taught in English schools?

The OED gives the pronunciation of was as w-o with cedilla-z, which turns out to be the wah sound, so wahs is correct "Queen's English."
This would indicate that if I wish to accurately indicate a common dialectical pronunciation as 'wuz,' I would not be sneering, but accurate.

I am asking for the pronunciations taught in a good English school.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 09:04 AM

There is a correct way to punctuate "y'all," and it is not "ya'll" – which I have seen a few times in this thread.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 09:56 AM

I think the worse use was in Arthur Conleys 'Sweet Soul Music'

Spotlight on Lou Ralls, y'all (yeah yeah)
Ah, don't he look tall, y'all (yeah yeah)
Singin' "Love's a Hurtin' Thing", y'all (yeah yeah)
Oh yeah, oh yeah

Getting lines to rhyme by sticking the same word on the end of every one just isn't on you know. May as well just make up some nonsense phrase like Whack-fol-de-riddle or ri-fol-de-rol.

Oh, hang on...

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,Santa
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 10:24 AM

Q: Long pronounciation of vowels is characteristic of Southern English, sometimes called Received Pronunciation, short vowels of Northern English. Those who feel that "proper" English requires long vowels would pronounce "says" as written (not "sahs" which doesn't sound any kind of English): "sez" is closer to normal use. There is a tendency to extend the length of the vowel by those wishing to accentuate their superiority. These people are known as "Rahs" for fairly obvious reasons.

BBC English is basically Received Pronunciation without the more extreme habits. Perhaps it would use "sayz" - definitely a z sound at the end, but that is normal in English with words ending in s.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: R. Padgett
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 11:29 AM

fascinating stuff!!

Only heard in UK possible Scottish is yous all, meaning plural 'all of you'

tha is familar form of you in Yorkshire(single)

eg tha reight = you are right

or thee familiar form 'you', = what's up wi thee? = What is the matter with you (single)

plural no eqivalent would use 'you' for plural


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 01:24 PM

Somewhere back in this thread is a posting about other words.
"Awl" is a tool with a point (possibly conically shaped) which makes holes--used by leatherworkers, sailmakers, carpenters.
"Yawl" is a kind of sailboat.
"Yaw" is a movement to the side, maybe arc-like; sort of a swerve--by a boat, tool that gets out of control, (maybe a person, but it would be humorously referring to them looking like an inanimate obj.).
Then there's the term "Yar" spoken by Cary Grant in the movie Philadelphia Story, with Katherine H. Used to say the little sailboat they had shared as a married couple (their roles in the movie) was, despite its size limitations, very clean, easy handling, "well-behaved"--a really good boat. Anyway, that's the way I heard that word.
Gosharoony, word fans, all y'all are just SSSSOOOOO helpful, insightful, educational. Thanks a bunch.    Tw


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: katlaughing
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 02:03 PM

McGrath, thanks for the link! VERY interesting article...I'll have to see about getting the book.

For an amusing read on the "proper" punctuation and the "possible" origin of "y'all/ya'll" Click HERE, Yawl

Thanks,

kat


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Le Scaramouche
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 04:10 PM

The familiar of you is actualy thou, still used in the very north of England isn't it?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 04:14 PM

"I know this isn't the thread on slang"

I rather think it is now.

"I remember a prof in English Lit (teaching in Texas) making a point that the correct pronunciation of was is 'was,' as in wahs, not wuz, as most of us pronounced it. Also, says is pronounced 'sais' (long a) not sez.

Is this what is taught in English schools?"


Quite some time since I've been in school, but I'd say the answer is "No". Maybe inn Texas, for all I know, but not in England.

"Received Pronunciation" for "was" is more or less "wos", and for "says" it's "sez". That phonetic spelling they use in dictionaries would get it more accurately.

That reminds me that the laast Prime Minister, John Major had a really unique way of pronouncing the word "want" - he pronounced it the way it is spelt, that is, to rhyme with "pant" rather than, as is more commonly done, to rhyme with "font". I've never come across anyone else with that way of saying it. I've always been mildly curious where he got it from.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 08:49 PM

Last night on the PBS News Hour, Jim Lehrer was discussing Bush's supreme court appointment with Mark Shields and David Brooks. Normally, he asks one of them a question and then the other. He decided to direct a question to both of them and he said, "What is y'all's opinion ..."

We think that's the first time we ever heard that usage. Has anybody else heard it?

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 21 Jul 05 - 11:17 AM

To whomever: you would have to prove to me that anybody ever pronounced "was" as "wahs." Same with "says." The opinion of one college perfessor does not constitute proof.


Guest, the construction "y'all's" is new to me, too. I believe it's a first. What do Southerners say?

Where I live, the possessive of y'all seems to be "yer guys's." It is not used in publications.
----------
Meanwhile, I have run the song about the Texan through my folk processor, and I have composed a line with the internal rhyme that I crave:

Oh, I'm a long, tall Texan, and I enforce the law.
(He rides through Texas to enforce the law.)
repeat first two lines
People on their way turn to me and say,
"Hoo-ray, hoo-rah, are y'all the law?"

The main purpose of this verse is to have fun with the r in "enforce." When you hear it, you know that the law is really enforced wherever this guy is.

I went to an ecumenical church service recently, and one minister started his talk by saying, "The first thing I'm going to talk about is my accent. It's a Texas accent. You cen't do it, so don't trah." He was right; his speech was a fascinating combination of Southern and crystal. (Don't ask me to explain that; ears never explain.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Highlandman
Date: 21 Jul 05 - 04:55 PM

I had a great post, but a 'Cat-fit ate it. So...
These things are extremely locale-specific. Where one 'catter says her source is certain "y'all" is either singular or plural, I can say without a doubt it's always plural in my location.
"All y'all" is an emphatic plural. Suppose I'm in a room with six people and I want to invite the two I'm in conversation with to dinner: "Y'all come over tonight to eat." Then if I want to include the rest (some body language included) I might say "and all y'all come over about eight and we'll watch the game."
"Y'all's" is pretty common where I live, but you'll never see it in print. Most folks here might say it in casual conversation but don't consider it "correct."
"Enforce" would be pronounced something like "en-FOE-werse," but in other parts of the South you'll hear "en-FOE-ahs." Like I said, there's no definitive Southern dialect. Here in the Upstate of South Carolina we have at least four distinct native variations: mountain, sandhill, piedmont and what you might call Upstate Black. All quite different, and that doesn't even include the transplants from Charleston, Georgia and Tennessee.
-HM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Jul 05 - 12:03 PM

Wesley S wrote

Another acceptable plural version of y'all is "all y'all".

Is that how cowboy yodelling was invented?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 22 Jul 05 - 12:41 PM

Good grief, Guest. Haven't you ever tried to yodel? Nobody could yodel to syllables as open as "all y'all."

Here are some syllables to yodel to, from a song about the cuckoo which I learned in school:

Hi li ra
hul di ra, hul di ra
hul di ra cu-koo

etc


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: grammatically correct use of ' y'all'?
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 22 Jul 05 - 01:44 PM

Had another look at the beginning of this thread. Ah'm s'PRAHZD at all y'all.   Surely this song is in the digithingy. It came out when I was in high school (graduated in 1961) and was NOT the Beach Boys. I've never heard them do it. Can't remember the group, but not them. The way I remember it:

"Well, Ah'm a lawng, tall Texun--
Ah wayuh(wear) a 10-gallon hat.
(ref: He rides th'oo Texiss in a 10-gallon hat.)
(repeat these 3 lines once.)
Well, people look at me an' say,
'Er-uh, er-uh, izzat yo' hayut?'

Well, Ah'm a lawng, tall Texun--
Ah rahd(ride) a big, white hoss.
(ref: He rides th'oo Texiss on a big, white hoss.)
(rep. as above)
Well, people look at me an' say,
'Er-uh, er-uh, izzat yo' hoss?'

Well, Ah'm a lawng, tall Texun--
Ah enfoe-ss(enforce) justice fo' de law.
(ref: He rides fun(from) Texiss to enfoe-ss de law.)
(rep. as above)
Well, people look at me an' say,
'Er-uh, er-uh, iz yoo de law?'"

I've tried to give a pronunciation approximation as I remember the sounds. I don't remember a verse about a gun, but that doesn't mean there wasn't one. Just that I may be having a "senior moment". Sorry.    Tw


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