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11:00 PM
@DamkerngT. Because there, at utterance time, a couple isn't intended to mean "exactly two"
> Whew, work was rough today. Want to go get exactly two drinks?
But it looks really weird when we know it's about exactly three, and they use a couple.
3 hours ago, by Kabir101
@snailboat: I dont think that every noun can be used as an adjective.
I think we can use any noun (to act) as an adjective, if we wanno!
11:05 PM
@DamkerngT. Sure, but only if your theory conflates category with function, and you say "used as an adjective" to mean, say, "appears as an attributive modifier in NP structure"
Non-standard English does have extremely productive zero derivation (a.k.a. "conversion"), however
Is that what you're referring to?
Oh, there are some non-zero derivational affixes that turn nouns into adjectives. But I'm not sure if you meant that.
I think "appears as an attributive modifier in NP structure" is what I thought of.
Then yes, you can do that with any noun.
11:08 PM
Which is a fairly strong argument that it's actually a function that nouns have, in my opinion :-)
Hah! :)
At least, Pullum says you can, and I have yet to think of a counterexample
Yay! (Having Pullum on my side is surely a good thing.)
Wait, I probably should rephrase that to "Being on the same side with Pullum ..." instead. :)
@DamkerngT. Don't be so sure about that!
@DamkerngT. Though he doesn't call them "adjectives" when they have that function :-)
11:14 PM
@F.E. Okay, I wasn't 100% sure.
Though the good folks on ELL aren't much interested in this "attributive noun" stuff.
I'm hearing rumors that Pullum now is considering that the "to" in a "to"-infinitive is something other than a marker.
That the "to" is a special kind of auxiliary verb, or something--if I'm recalling right.
Oh! That's a little? weird.
Ah, as a defective auxiliary?
There's another member in ELU that's supposed to be making a big lengthy post on that topic. I be waiting. :)
@snailboat Yes.
11:16 PM
That would simplify the matter of PAE a bit :-)
CGEL considers "to" to be a marker, not an auxiliary.
@snailboat Wha? "PAE" = ?
Post-Auxiliary Ellipsis
Just a moment
But Pullum is the 2nd author of CGEL, and I think CGEL said "we" in their explanation of the "to" marker.
So that sounds like Pullum switched sides within the last 12 10 years.
@snailboat Yeah, maybe I be looking at that, er, when I'm about to get ready for a discussion on that topic, when that lengthy post finally gets posted. :D
11:20 PM
@F.E. In some of Pullum's older work he puts forth the defective auxiliary hypothesis
Oh, oh, Pullum does make mistakes. :) . . . There's that classical one where he misunderstood what Strunk was saying in The Elements of Style, in that stuff about passives and other things.
He got dinged on it in a comment or two by posters. But he never acknowledged his error, as far as I know.
People get emotional talking about that, so I've been avoiding the subject
And his flawed criticism has been spread all over the internet as gospel truth.
When I saw the commentors' posts, I went and looked at the sources, including Strunk's original version (before White was coauthored on it) online.
Yeah, it's kinda obvious what-is-what.
I guess I can't follow the conversation well enough...
I think the Japanese subordinators are all heads rather than markers
11:27 PM
It was where section where "passives" were kinda being talked about, and White made a few errors when updated the examples, and . . . so, what Strunk was saying, or meaning to say, became a bit blurred. And then Pullum kinda mis-interpreted what was being said, and the rest became history.
Was it about we should avoid "passives" as much as possible?
Let me look for the old online version of The Elements of Style . . .
I think this is it: bartleby.com/141
And you will see how Strunk got mis-understood--unfairly, imo, as it seems rather obvious to me what Strunk was saying. He wasn't saying what Pullum accused him of saying.
Now let me re-skim that to make sure . . . :D
"Many a tame sentence of description or exposition can be made lively and emphatic by substituting a transitive in the active voice for some such perfunctory expression as there is, or could be heard."
That was what was misunderstood.
The following examples -- famous, or infamous examples -- were merely examples of that.
He was not saying that some of those examples were passive.
Oh, true, there is, is not about passive.
:16111897 Er, White was talking about passives, then he switched for a moment to talk about replacing perfunctory expressions (such as "there is", "could be heard") with a transitive in the active voice.
But he didn't say that one version was passive.
I think I fell into the same trap myself too.
11:38 PM
I think part of the problem was the Strunk was a professor, not an engineer! :)
And engineer would be more careful about something like that.
A professor, Strunk, wrote class notes, put them together, and handed them out to his students--eventually, that hunk of notes became The Elements of Style.
It didn't help when White later revised some of the material.
Ahh... So that was how it became to exist.
Errors were made. Weaker stuff that wasn't defendable was inserted. And then Pullum mis-understood it.
Poor Strunk got dinged for stuff he didn't do.
Very unfair.
I think it's strange that Pullum or the Chronicle haven't added some fine prints under the article yet.
11:42 PM
I see a lot of "wrong" words in my posts!? Most of them are due to this automatic spelling-correction that is done.
@DamkerngT. Me too. :(
I think a lot of people are kinda thinking that too.
Just think, if I ever ended up taking a class of Pullum's . . . :D
My first paper would be on . . . gee, what would it be on? lemme think? what should it be?
Dang, I'm constantly writing "White" where I meant "Strunk". :(
There's the one post like 6 comments up. :(
"Er, White was talking about passives, then he switched for a moment to talk" -- That should be Strunk.
> Eddie's were false as could be.
Both answers explain it as ellipsis.
11:48 PM
I hope @snailboat isn't Pullum in disguise . . .
Or a Pullum spy . . .
@DamkerngT. I don't understand?
That was from one of ELL questions: ell.stackexchange.com/q/26472/3281
@DamkerngT. You should get in a habit of linking to questions when you talk about them :-)
I should. :)
Is it strange that I think the sentence is fine "as is"?
See, I think we can say, as is. Surely, I think we could say, as could be.
@DamkerngT. Comparative constructions, generally speaking, tend to be missing stuff.
11:52 PM
We don't necessarily think of them that way when we're putting words together, though.
We also have as usual.
Just like we don't think about the gap in a relative clause when we write one.
Still, positing the existence of such a gap can simplify our descriptions
@snailboat nods -- I guess it could be misleading, but only sometimes, perhaps?
I find comparative constructions in general hard to explain
11:53 PM
And there are a number of idiomatic comparatives
Certainly as could be feels complete when you say it
nods -- That's what I feel. Oh, you can put my thoughts into words better than I could do it myself. :)
@DamkerngT. as ___ usual
@snailboat Hmm... She is late as usual.
> She's late, which is usual (for her).
11:56 PM
> She's late, as ___ usual.
I'm not sure what I should fill in that gap. I'm not sure I can see the gap there! -- confused
You can't fill in the gap.
Well, can't might be too strong.
CGEL pages 1185-7 discusses "Reanalysis of 'to' as a VP subordinator". On page 1187: "We conclude that to is a VP subordinator." -- As far as I know, Pullum is one of the two major contributors to CGEL, and so, shouldn't that we include Pullum?!
11:59 PM
@F.E. Perhaps, that we refers to the consensus 'we'.
Tiger got a lot of back-reading in this chat to do . . .
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