ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 09:08 am
I've read recently that use of they/their is heard more often now when it refers to a singular subject. This makes me grind my teeth.

I could see reorganizing the sentence -

Someone (has) asked me to proofread the work, but has shown a habit of always leading into quotes with commas. For example...

(or, instead of the, proofread some work)
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 09:17 am
@Joe England,
Joe England wrote:
-He tilted his head to glance at me, eyebrows raised, “You ever going to get the burnt-out house cleared away?”-

Now, I'm relatively certain that should be a period between "raised" and "you," but I'd like to make sure I've got my grammar straight.

You are correct. The first part of that sentence is a complete thought. That should be a period, not a comma.

Joe England wrote:
When exactly is it appropriate to use commas or periods before quotes?

Sentences that integrate quotations should be punctuated like any other sentence. If a quotation functions as a dependent clause, it should typically be preceded by a comma. In some cases, however, a colon is more appropriate. Here are some guides:

Introducing quotations
Tips on Introducing Quotes

Joe England wrote:
Here's another excerpt which I think may be more correct, but, again... I'd like to double-check.

-“… Checking up on old friends,” I said carefully as I quickly swung my feet off the recliner, making a quick move towards where Johnny was hunting around in the back of the truck, “… Congrats on the new job.”-

Comma - quotation marks - ellipsis? Ghastly. Replace the comma with a period and delete the ellipsis. Also, "toward" is preferred over "towards" in American writing.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 09:58 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
"Someone's" is incorrect. "Apostrophe s" is a contraction for "is," not "has."


Either I misunderstand you, Joe, or it's one of those situations where someone says something about language that is so outlandish that it shocks everyone into silence.

Apostrophe s" is a contraction for both "is," and "has."

Googled - "someone's been told"
Search About 897,000 results

Googled - "someone asked"
About 23,700 results
joefromchicago
 
  0  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 10:13 pm
@JTT,
JTT wrote:
Either I misunderstand you, Joe, or it's one of those situations where someone says something about language that is so outlandish that it shocks everyone into silence.

It's more likely to have lulled everyone into somnolence.

JTT wrote:
Apostrophe s" is a contraction for both "is," and "has."

Googled - "someone's been told"
Search About 897,000 results

Googled - "someone asked"
About 23,700 results

That sort of argumentum ad populum is hardly convincing -- which, by the way, is something that should give you some comfort, JTT. After all, if we took a poll, it's likely most people would disagree with you (that's certainly the case here on A2K). And so, like you, I'll remain content in the knowledge that, although the masses be against me, I am nonetheless right.
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 10:14 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Quote:
JTT is off base with his criticism. The use of “their” in that sentence is not a catastrophe, but proper usage still is preferable.


That's the trouble with folks like you, Frank, that have been schooled in this stupidity - you're willing to ignore all the facts and hang your hat on these inane arguments like "proper usage".

"My criticism" is backed up by research done by really language experts, not these snake oil salesmen that you have "learned" from.

There's nothing proper about making up phony rules for something as complicated as language.

I told you, that's the singular 'you', Frank, and yet it uses a plural verb. Language uses grammar structure to describe nuances. You [singular] know that you [singular] ARE wrong and yet you persist in advancing this abject ignorance.

"__one" are grammatically singular by convention but they are notionally plural.

'Everyone brought his tent' is a ridiculous way to describe that 'Everyone brought their tent'. Why would 'everyone' bring one guy's tent?

This is the kind of stupidity that flows from these nonsensical rules. Again, as I've explained, and provided sources, these rules were made up. They do not conform to tradition [language tradition], though that's a common defense given by prescriptivists. How can these people, who profess to be language experts, miss this glaring fact?
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 10:25 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
After all, if we took a poll, it's likely most people would disagree with you (that's certainly the case here on A2K). And so, like you, I'll remain content in the knowledge that, although the masses be against me, I am nonetheless right.


That doesn't work for you, Joe, because you, [and every other native speaker of English on the planet], simply don't gloss these in the fashion you've described.

This is another of those silly Strunk & White type rules. No one, here at A2K, made note of this "rule" until you pointed it out. When real rules are broken, they twig in our brains. Eva, it was Eva, wasn't it, didn't realize anything until you spoke up.

Quote:
That sort of argumentum ad populum is hardly convincing


It's completely convincing because, as the linguist, Dwight Bolinger said, paraphrased, Usage in the broad sense is the only determiner of correctness. To think differently would have to mean that the rules somehow preceded language.

You proved him correct in a previous post in this thread where you stated,

"Also, "toward" is preferred over "towards" in American writing".
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 10:47 pm
@ossobuco,
Quote:
I've read recently that use of they/their is heard more often now when it refers to a singular subject. This makes me grind my teeth.


I've never understood, Osso, why some people seem to relish hanging onto ignorance with such a great tenacity. Perhaps you can explain it to me.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 10:54 pm
@JTT,
I wrote: Googled - "someone asked"
About 23,700 results

It should have read,

Googled - "someone's asked"
About 23,700 results

0 Replies
 
Ticomaya
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Jun, 2012 11:54 pm
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:
Roberta wrote:
The opening sentence should read (assuming that the someone is a male):

Someone's asked me to proofread his work, but he has a habit of always leading into quotes with commas. For example...

"Someone's" is incorrect. "Apostrophe s" is a contraction for "is," not "has."

Wrong, sir ... wrong!

http://img856.imageshack.us/img856/7052/uvzk.png

You must not be a Staind fan ...


joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 12:25 am
@JTT,
JTT wrote:
That doesn't work for you, Joe, because you, [and every other native speaker of English on the planet], simply don't gloss these in the fashion you've described.

That's funny, because I'm certain everyone in the English-speaking world glosses the same way that I gloss. And that goes for Canada too.

JTT wrote:
This is another of those silly Strunk & White type rules. No one, here at A2K, made note of this "rule" until you pointed it out.

I pity them for their ignorance.

JTT wrote:
When real rules are broken, they twig in our brains.

Well, it certainly kindled your interest.

JTT wrote:
It's completely convincing because, as the linguist, Dwight Bolinger said, paraphrased, Usage in the broad sense is the only determiner of correctness. To think differently would have to mean that the rules somehow preceded language.

And that's just an argumentum ad verecundiam. Who says Bolinger is right?

JTT wrote:
You proved him correct in a previous post in this thread where you stated,

"Also, "toward" is preferred over "towards" in American writing".

I did no such thing. I have no idea if that's what the majority believes. I rather think it isn't. But then I don't really care.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 12:27 am
@Ticomaya,
Ticomaya wrote:
Wrong, sir ... wrong!

For you to say that I'm wrong convinces me that I'm right.

Ticomaya wrote:
You must not be a Staind fan ...

Who told?
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 03:45 am
@JTT,
Quote:
Re: Frank Apisa (Post 5027919)
Quote:
JTT is off base with his criticism. The use of “their” in that sentence is not a catastrophe, but proper usage still is preferable.


That's the trouble with folks like you, Frank, that have been schooled in this stupidity - you're willing to ignore all the facts and hang your hat on these inane arguments like "proper usage".

"My criticism" is backed up by research done by really language experts, not these snake oil salesmen that you have "learned" from.

There's nothing proper about making up phony rules for something as complicated as language.

I told you, that's the singular 'you', Frank, and yet it uses a plural verb. Language uses grammar structure to describe nuances. You [singular] know that you [singular] ARE wrong and yet you persist in advancing this abject ignorance.

"__one" are grammatically singular by convention but they are notionally plural.

'Everyone brought his tent' is a ridiculous way to describe that 'Everyone brought their tent'. Why would 'everyone' bring one guy's tent?

This is the kind of stupidity that flows from these nonsensical rules. Again, as I've explained, and provided sources, these rules were made up. They do not conform to tradition [language tradition], though that's a common defense given by prescriptivists. How can these people, who profess to be language experts, miss this glaring fact?


Try to calm down, JTT.

This thread is about the use of a comma...not about starting World War III.

JTT
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 08:15 am
@joefromchicago,
All of your responses are pure drivel, Joe, but what can you expect when you come up with a rule that completely defies reality. Where did you learn such nonsense?

Quote:
That's funny, because I'm certain everyone in the English-speaking world glosses the same way that I gloss. And that goes for Canada too.


That, of course, is not completely accurate, but with respect to an example like "she's been to London", yes, everyone glosses the she plus apostrophe s as she has been

It seems that even Tico wasn't subjected to that crap and he's certainly had his head filled with some nonsense.
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 08:26 am
@Frank Apisa,
Quote:
Try to calm down, JTT.

This thread is about the use of a comma...not about starting World War III.


Don't start with that crap, Frank. That, or some other bit of silliness [troll] is the first thing that comes to many here at A2K when their arguments fall flat.

If you really believed that then you wouldn't have run your mouth off spreading this arrant nonsense. And you would have addressed these comments first to Roberta, then to others who have also been "off topic".

Notice how all you learned folk, steeped in this English "grammar" crap that is taught to American students, can't do anything but repeat the crap.

Professor Pullum was sure right when he commented,

"The Elements of Style does not deserve the enormous esteem in which it is held by American college graduates. Its advice ranges from limp platitudes to inconsistent nonsense. Its enormous influence has not improved American students' grasp of English grammar; it has significantly degraded it."

FROM,

April 17, 2009
50 Years of Stupid Grammar Advice

By Geoffrey K. Pullum

http://chronicle.com/article/50-Years-of-Stupid-Grammar/25497/
0 Replies
 
contrex
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 08:31 am
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:

"Someone's" is incorrect. "Apostrophe s" is a contraction for "is," not "has."


It can be either, and also denote the possessive. Bill's fallen over again. Dad's won the lottery! Frank's hair is black. Pete's angry. Someone's pencil was left behind. Joe's car is a Honda.



0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 08:54 am
@JTT,
JTT wrote:
That, of course, is not completely accurate, but with respect to an example like "she's been to London", yes, everyone glosses the she plus apostrophe s as she has been

I have no doubt that people, when hearing that phrase, understand it to mean "she has been." That hardly means it's correct, it just means people tend to "fill in the blanks" to make a nonsensical sentence make sense.

For instance, let's take the following: "When real rules are broken, they twig in our brains." Now I'm sure you'll agree that that's non-standard English. As best as I can determine, "twig" is an obscure British slang term meaning "to get" or "to understand." Your usage, however, isn't even standard non-standard British English. You use "twig" to mean "register" or "connect." Yet I can understand what you're trying, in your inarticulate manner, to get across. That's because I understand what you're planoshing in context. There's really no bickrup to it at all. Anyone can remlin a word and be understood, so long as the neologism is heard in context. That's why your quelrik is simply untenable. Just because I can twig a sentence that uses incorrect grammar doesn't mean the grammar is correct, it just means I can twig the meaning of the sentence despite the incorrect grammar.

And so it is with a sentence like "she's been to London." It's not grammatically correct, but I, and I'm sure the vast majority of English speakers, can understand it. That doesn't mean it's grammatically correct, any more than "me want cookie" is grammatically correct, even though that is also perfectly understandable. Or are you willing to say that "me want cookie" is standard English?
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 09:06 am
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
And so it is with a sentence like "she's been to London." It's not grammatically correct,


You've spent a lot of time bloviating, Joe, but none at all explaining why it's not grammatically correct.

And none explaining where you heard such arrant nonsense. Are you embarrassed to tell us that little gem came from one of your elementary school teachers?

This has got to be one of the most phantasmagorical grammar "rules" that has ever come from the pages of A2K. How come you didn't include it in the Pet Peeves of English threads?

Quote:
For instance, let's take the following: "When real rules are broken, they twig in our brains." Now I'm sure you'll agree that that's non-standard English.


No, I don't agree at all that it is non-standard English.

How on Earth would you come up with a silly notion like that? Same grade school teacher?

You've never struck me before as one with such provincial proclivities, Joe.



What I do agree with is that you are seriously jeopardizing your heretofore good reputation as someone knowledgeable on the English language.

-------------------------------
M-W
Definition of TWIG
transitive verb
1
: notice, observe
2
: to understand the meaning of : comprehend

-------------------------------------------
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 09:09 am
@JTT,
JTT wrote:
You spend a lot of time bloviating, Joe, but none at all explaining why it's not grammatically correct.

And none explaining where you heard such arrant nonsense. Are you embarrassed to tell us that little gem came from one of your elementary school teachers?

You want me to answer your questions without extending the same courtesy to me? No, I'm afraid we can't proceed on that basis. As long as you selectively quote from my posts and ignore my questions, I have no problem doing the same with yours. If you want me to answer that, you'll first have to explain whether "me want cookie" is standard English, as I asked in my previous post.
contrex
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 09:38 am
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:
And so it is with a sentence like "she's been to London." It's not grammatically correct


What is this nonsense? It's perfectly correct. Where did you get the idea that it is not? She's been to London. She's been drinking. Mary's had an accident. Jim's fixed it.

0 Replies
 
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2012 09:40 am
@joefromchicago,
joefromchicago wrote:
you'll first have to explain whether "me want cookie" is standard English


It isn't, (it may be some kind of Ozark dialect?) but shortening 'has' to an apostrophe and an s most certainly is. Stop digging. Or trolling. Whichever.


 

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