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#1 Vivian Darkbloom

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:26 PM

I have a (probably deserved) reputation around these parts as being a prissy little grammar and spelling nazi. Guilty as charged. Some of it is a William Safire-esque interest in tracking the evolution of colloquial shifts and use patterns, some of it is snooty and admittedly elitist disdain for rubes.

I've already bitched about the wince-inducing fused relative construction in this Topic's description in a separate thread. I hate it. No, you may help the next person, or you may help he or she who is next, but unless you're living in Shakespearean times, you may not help "who's next."

Today's gripe: hypercorrection, those clumsy attempts to make a written or spoken sentence seem more learned, but that the speaker or writer uses in a flat-out backwards abomination of basic prescriptive rules, often combined with a desire to seem formal or educated.

From a memo issued by one of the Departmental Heads, came out just this morning:

"Our plan, after getting any concerns/ changes suggested by you, is to meet next Monday with stakeholders whom are our typical repeat customers." (wince-inducing emphasis added)

Note to DH: using "whom" does not automatically elevate your sentence, and in this case, it's wrong. "Who" is the subjective or nominative form of the interrogative or relative pronoun "who." "Whom" is the corresponding accusative or dative pronoun (used when the pronoun is either the direct or indirect object of the sentence). Here, in your sentence, "who" is a nominative plural relative pronoun referring to the antecedent "stakeholders." It is serving as the subject of the dependent clause "Who (i.e. the Stakeholders) are our typical repeat customers."

The whole that/which/what relative pronoun debacle is another whole can of worms. We'll save that lesson for another day.

Unload your grammar-based Jeremiads here. It's OK....I feel your pain.
The God of language forgives all crimes. -W.H. Auden ***** Anthony B, Independent, March 16 Black Mountain, Rickshaw Stop, March 20 Earthless, Wooden Shjips, Cafe du Nord, March 28 Mastodon, Kylesa, Intronaut, Great American Music Hall, April 19 Opeth, Enslaved, Regency Grand Ballroom, May 14 Sun Kil Moon, Great American Music Hall, May 29

#2 nobodies

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:29 PM

William Safire Orders Two Whoppers Junior

#3 tweed

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:30 PM

misuse of "myself" "less" instead of "fewer"
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#4 b*derty

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:32 PM

thats all fine and good in the written word. but when people speak to each other they can say whatever they want. <_<

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#5 Ted Falconi

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:32 PM

"Can I help who's next?", No, you may not

I usually hate silly grammar policing and obstinate insistence that something thousands of people say is somehow "wrong." But at the risk of Slackmo calling me a pedant, I can't stand this one.

Everyone's heard it while waiting in line. Usually uttered by some slack-jawed hourly wage slave in a disaffected monotone.

Problem is, you can't use a relative pronoun without an antecedent. Even modern colloquial American English generally avoids implied antecedents.

"Can I help he or she who is next?" obviously sounds turgid and weird. But "Can I help who's next?" sounds retarded.

I suggest:

"Can I help the next customer in line?"
"Can I help the next person?"
"Can I help the next guest?"

It just seems weird to have something so syntactically-challenged be a stock phrase.

That is all.



#6 Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ

Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:34 PM

"who's is this?"
Aren't there any girls out their who like good music? I need to and want to meet them. My favorite bands are Overkill River, The Nife, Songs:Ohio, and Nuetral Milk Hotel. Please let me know if your into indy music and like to go to show's and drink beer's and makeout.

#7 stphone

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:39 PM

Real quick, when do you use "its" and when do you use "it's" again? I've learned this so many times, but I always go on to forget which one gets to keep the apostrophe and which one doesn't. Is it the possessive it that keeps it?

#8 Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ

Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ҈҉Ѡ

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:41 PM

Real quick, when do you use "its" and when do you use "it's" again? I've learned this so many times, but I always go on to forget which one gets to keep the apostrophe and which one doesn't. Is it the possessive it that keeps it?


it's not used in the possessive

now you know its usage
Aren't there any girls out their who like good music? I need to and want to meet them. My favorite bands are Overkill River, The Nife, Songs:Ohio, and Nuetral Milk Hotel. Please let me know if your into indy music and like to go to show's and drink beer's and makeout.

#9 Vivian Darkbloom

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:41 PM

Real quick, when do you use "its" and when do you use "it's" again? I've learned this so many times, but I always go on to forget which one gets to keep the apostrophe and which one doesn't. Is it the possessive it that keeps it?


Other way around- contraction of "it is" gets the apostrophe, while the possessive pronoun "its" has none.
The God of language forgives all crimes. -W.H. Auden ***** Anthony B, Independent, March 16 Black Mountain, Rickshaw Stop, March 20 Earthless, Wooden Shjips, Cafe du Nord, March 28 Mastodon, Kylesa, Intronaut, Great American Music Hall, April 19 Opeth, Enslaved, Regency Grand Ballroom, May 14 Sun Kil Moon, Great American Music Hall, May 29

#10 stphone

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 05:43 PM

thanks

#11 arkin

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:01 PM

"less" instead of "fewer"


This fucking kills me.

#12 Rajexico

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:02 PM

This board is a wasteland of awful grammar, but this one in particular keeps returning to the top of the Music Discussion board and it's terribly annoying:

"Are REM getting their mojo back?"

No. Either the band known as REM is getting its mojo back or the individual members of REM are collectively getting their mojos back.

I can sort of understand flubbing the rules for a plural-sounding band ("The White Stripes are..."), but there's no excuse for this one.

In the future there is only drink and birds.


lastfm

#13 arkin

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:04 PM

This board is a wasteland of awful grammar, but this one in particular keeps returning to the top of the Music Discussion board and it's terribly annoying:

"Are REM getting their mojo back?"

No. Either the band known as REM is getting its mojo back or the individual members of REM are collectively getting their mojos back.

I can sort of understand flubbing the rules for a plural-sounding band ("The White Stripes are..."), but there's no excuse for this one.


yeah, that's one I've always had trouble completely accepting for the reasons you've just explained.

The White Stripes is touring.

Think about that one for a little while.

#14 Wolfgang

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:06 PM

Serious question, as I've been struggling with this in my written correspondence lately: What's the difference between and how do I use "who's" vs. "whose"? I always figured "who's" is the plural but I never know how to use "whose" now. Help me understand.

its like a group of nerds just get together to self indulge their self, just like sound opinions message board.


#15 nobodies

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:08 PM

Real quick, when do you use "its" and when do you use "it's" again? I've learned this so many times, but I always go on to forget which one gets to keep the apostrophe and which one doesn't. Is it the possessive it that keeps it?


it's not used in the possessive

now you know its usage


I was always taught to remember the distinction this way: "its" is possessive, and you can remember this because the "s" belongs to the "it"; whereas "it's" is a contraction of two words, so you use the apostrophe to make that distinction.

#16 arkin

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:09 PM

Whose is possessive: Whose cake is this? Who's is a contraction of who is: Who's going to eat the cake?

#17 Vivian Darkbloom

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:15 PM

Serious question, as I've been struggling with this in my written correspondence lately: What's the difference between and how do I use "who's" vs. "whose"?
I always figured "who's" is the plural but I never know how to use "whose" now. Help me understand.


"Who's" is a contraction of the nominative possessive personal pronoun "who," in the interrogative with the verb "to be" conjugated in the third person singular.

"Who's going to see the collective entity (often the subject of rightly lamented subject-verb agreement mishaps) REM tonight?"

"Whose" is a possesive pronoun.

"REM (is/are) the band whose recent recorded output has SOMBIES questioning the status of their collective mojo."
The God of language forgives all crimes. -W.H. Auden ***** Anthony B, Independent, March 16 Black Mountain, Rickshaw Stop, March 20 Earthless, Wooden Shjips, Cafe du Nord, March 28 Mastodon, Kylesa, Intronaut, Great American Music Hall, April 19 Opeth, Enslaved, Regency Grand Ballroom, May 14 Sun Kil Moon, Great American Music Hall, May 29

#18 Slackmo

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:31 PM

misuse of "myself"


You can go blind that way.
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#19 Vivian Darkbloom

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:34 PM

misuse of "myself"


You can go blind that way.


See, e.g., the Divinyls "I Touch Myself"
The God of language forgives all crimes. -W.H. Auden ***** Anthony B, Independent, March 16 Black Mountain, Rickshaw Stop, March 20 Earthless, Wooden Shjips, Cafe du Nord, March 28 Mastodon, Kylesa, Intronaut, Great American Music Hall, April 19 Opeth, Enslaved, Regency Grand Ballroom, May 14 Sun Kil Moon, Great American Music Hall, May 29

#20 Slackmo

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Posted 28 April 2008 - 06:37 PM

misuse of "myself"


You can go blind that way.


See, e.g., the Divinyls "I Touch Myself"


Or Austin Powers "Allow myself to introduce...myself."
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