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#120658 - 01/21/04 08:23 AM Re: Against Weather?
wsieber Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 1026
Loc: Switzerland
Yes, there are always some rocks that take longer to grind down to sand


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#120659 - 01/21/04 08:23 AM Re: Against Weather?
Capfka Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 06/28/02
Posts: 1624
Loc: Utter Placebo, Planet Reebok
'Ere, you little twerp, bring that dining room chair in off the beach this instant! You'll get it all wet an' mucky. You just wait 'til your father gets 'ome!
-- Knutty's Mum


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#120660 - 01/21/04 08:27 AM Re: Against Weather?
Jackie Online   content

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11609
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
darn, yuh got ahead by 30 seconds! Not my fault that you were too long coming! (See Dunlendings.)


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#120661 - 01/21/04 08:27 AM Re: Against Weather?
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
French underwent a storm of elisions, and survived it very
well.
I doubt that an accumulations of elisions would improve English. Perhaps we can blow the whistle on them, and
keep the consonants, and avoid confusion.


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#120662 - 01/21/04 08:34 AM Re: Against Weather?
Father Steve Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/06/00
Posts: 2788
Loc: Seattle, Washington, USA
Knutty sez: But if a word appears to be changing in a way that seems (to me) ugly, then I don't have to be a passive observer, I reserve the right to resist the change.

Many of the definitional changes in Modern English tend toward imprecision. A term which has a narrow usage is used sloppily. The definition broadens, following the poor usage. The language, capable of great precision, becomes less precise ... as does the thinking of those who damaged it. (When you're my age, you can say curmudgeonly things like this and get away with it.)



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#120663 - 01/21/04 08:39 AM Re: Against Weather? (an aside)
AnnaStrophic Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
When I saw this subject line, I immediately thought of the French (and Portuguese, and maybe Spanish) term contretemps/contratempo. [/aside]


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#120664 - 01/21/04 08:41 AM Re: Against Weather?
dxb Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1692
Loc: UK
Ed.:

Forget it - this was far too late to be relevant! Comes from trying to answer the 'phone while (whilst?) posting.


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#120665 - 01/21/04 08:43 AM Re: Against Weather?
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13799
Many of the definitional changes in Modern English tend toward imprecision

Then other words crop up to fill in the void and y'all complain about those.


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#120666 - 01/21/04 08:52 AM Re: Against Weather?
dxb Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1692
Loc: UK
Only the ugly sounding ones!


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#120667 - 01/21/04 09:24 AM Re: Against Weather?
jheem Offline
veteran

Registered: 01/06/04
Posts: 1474
Loc: California
A term which has a narrow usage is used sloppily. The definition broadens, following the poor usage. The language, capable of great precision, becomes less precise ... as does the thinking of those who damaged it.

Sorry, Padre, I just don't buy it. Seems there was a thread hereabouts recently about how the Golden Age of Yore (tm) wasn't always what it was cracked up to be. Same with language. Take Latin. Is it more or less precise than French or Italian? Did Neanderthals speak a precise language of utter purity? Why aren't we grunting out monosyllables all meaning the same thing? Is English any worse off now that silly means 'foolish' rather than 'happy, innocent, pitiable, feeble' as it did in Middle English? The problem is this: languages change. Always have, alweays will. The only known way of stopping a language from changing is to set the number of its speakers to zero. I am reminded of Canute on the beach.

I think that people with poor critical thinking skills and poor verbal skills use a language in an inprecise manner. The same could be said of somebody using a hammer sideways to hammer in a screw. Is the hammer any less of a hammer. Oh, now I feel like Canute. (Sorry, Father Steve, just a pet peeve of mine.)


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