1 « 10 11  13 14 » 26
He may have been a perfectionist. As a journalist myself, ... article. However there is invariably reason behind my apparent madness.

A "journalist"? Unh-hunh. Sure.

Why not?

Andrew Gwilliam
To email me, replace "bottomless pit" with "silverhelm"
A classic case of a commonly used word that started out as incorrect English: "Regular" as used for a long ... stressed that TA mechanics work alongside "regular" army mechanics. "Ah! the TA mechanics must be constipated mechanics", I thought. ;-)

How is this use of "regular" incorrect?

Andrew Gwilliam
To email me, replace "bottomless pit" with "silverhelm"
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
RickyC had it:
How come? Why "by definition"?

It's part of the rule.

David
==
replace usenet with the
As a matter of interest, did you, persoanlly, take Lukes's comment as an accusation of lying?

No.
The way I used the word is quite commonplace, as you must be aware.

I don't recall having been offended by his comment. I believe that I assumed that he thought I was pretending not to know the usage.

If he genuinely thought that his use of 'avail' was commonplace, and that we would be familiar with it, I can imagine that he might have construed the reactions of me and some other posters as being deliberately perverse.

I am more sad than annoyed about what seems to have been an unfortunate misunderstanding - mainly on Luke's part, I suspect.

I hope that Luke takes it into his head to come back to this group.

The moral of the story: Do not assume that something which is normal and commonplace among one set of people is normal and commonplace among a wider group.

Peter Duncanson
UK (posting from a.e.u)
How come? Why "by definition"?

Because that's what the definition says.

Peter Duncanson
UK (posting from a.e.u)
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
A classic case of a commonly used word that started out as incorrect English: "Regular" as used for a long ... stressed that TA mechanics work alongside "regular" army mechanics. "Ah! the TA mechanics must be constipated mechanics", I thought. ;-)

http://www.askoxford.com/concise oed/regular?view=uk regular: 8. of or belonging to the permanent professional armed forces of a country.
http://www.askoxford.com/concise oed/irregular?view=uk irregular: 3. not belonging to regular army units.

This meaning has been in use for as long as I can remember (age 68). It certainly goes back much further. You might have heard of the group of street urchins used by Sherlock Holmes to run errands for him which he named "The Baker Street Irregulars".
From the OED
Regular

7. Military. Of forces or troops: Properly and permanently organized;constituting the standing army.
The first example of the word's use is dated 1707.

Peter Duncanson
UK (posting from a.e.u)
How come? Why "by definition"?

Because that's what the definition says. Peter Duncanson UK (posting from a.e.u)

Since no one else can give Ricky the reason, I will: It comes from the rules of rhetorical argument. Kat made a conflagration between Usenet practices and the practices of the Nazi party. Not only was it irrelevant, and tasteless, as others pointed out, it is also over-reaching in an attempt to be forceful, and it had nothing to do with the points of contention in this thread.
If you want the actual rhetorical term, I'd have to find my reference book, but there is such a term for committing this kind of fallacy, and as in this case, it is usually not a successful debating strategy.

Joanne
Search for the exact phrase: "avail it to".

I did that, and it got me 197 hits. A quick scan of the top few results showed that these corresponded to Luke's usage. When I restricted the search to UK sites, however, the number fell to just three, and these were much less clear-cut in their form. So it looks to me as if Luke's usage is not at all common in Britain.
So "I availed A to B" (non-standard but up-and-coming) means the same as "I availed B of A" (standard but unidiomatic). Hmm...

Matti
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Kat schrieb:
if you say that anything concerning English usage is fair game in any thread, then you end up with what ... a childish sqabbles. It happens to many groups and sometimes they eventually die off, because no-one wants to go there.

If you google back, you'll find that this group has a long history of childish squabbles. It's not dead yet. Emotion: smile
In your not-so-humble opinion, perhaps. It depends what one means by off-topic.

It's called "topic creep", and this group is particularly prone to it as its subject is language, and practically every post contains that: every post can be material for a new thread.
Cheers
Michael

It's silly talking about how many years we will have to spend in the jungles of Vietnam when we could pave the whole country and put parking stripes on it and still be home by Christmas. Ronald Reagan, October 10, 1965
Show more