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Hi, I hope your health is good and that your heart is full.

Now, I believe "stand" in the following examples is slangish, and conveys a sense of suggestion, but I just don't see how the verb, meaninig "to rise," comes to mean that. I would be obliged if you would lead me to the logic.

[1] You could stand a little rest.

[2] You could stand a glass of super cold wine.

[3] You could stand to work out a bit more.

Hiro/ Sendai, Japan
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Comments  
Hello Hiro,

It's just a different use of the word, not related to "to rise." It means "benefit from."

Your writing could stand a little editing, for example, would mean that your writing would benefit from being edited. (Not a commentary on YOUR writing - it's just a sample sentence."

In #3, you'd have to change it to "You would benefit from working out a bit more."
[3] You could stand to work out a bit more.

You could say that only with an ironical meaning, say to a person whom you consider lazy.

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stand

1 a : to endure or undergo successfully <stand the cold> <stand the test of time> <how his motives would stand a closer scrutiny> b : TOLERATE , BEAR stand criticism> <can't stand the thought of losing all that money> c :stand that fellow>

Merriam-Webster Unabridged
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Hi.

I just don't seem to have a good grasp of this usage. I wonder in what situation you could use stand in this sense and what sort of noun or in case of "could stand to do" verb you could use.

Many thanks.

Hiro/ Sendai, Japan
By the way, I think this is primarily an American useage.
Grammar Geek
In #3, you'd have to change it to "You would benefit from working out a bit more."

Hi, GG.

I'm curious to know what makes "You could stand to work out a bit more" sound odd. I'd appreciate it if you would help me with that, GG.

Hiro

Sendai, Japan
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I'm sorry, I wasn't clear. The way you had it was fine.

I meant to say that if you substitute in "would benefit from" for "could stand" then you would need to change "to work out" to the the gerund "working out."

You could stand can take a noun [a nice hot cup of coffee] or the infinitive [to work out] after it, but You would benefit from requires a noun.

Sorry for any confusion I created!
Hi, all.

I just don't see how "stand" is used to mean "to benefit from." I can easily understand how "stand" is used to mean "to be able to torerate," as "stand" gives you a notion of "holding tight, not caving in" --- standing through the thing that the subject should go through, but how "stand" is used to mean "to benefit from." The same thing goes to "stand" meaning "to treat" as in "to stand you icecream." How come "stand you icecream" comes to mean "treat you to icecream"?

Any and all your help would be appreciated.

Hiro

Sendai, Japan
Hiro:

You could stand/tolerate working out a bit more.
You could survive working out a bit more.

all mean saying ironically to that person that he/she won't be killed or made sick by doing that work, but on the contrary, as GG says, he will benefit from it:

You would benefit from working out a bit more.

which is less ironic and "straight/direct"-speaking.
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