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1:02 AM
@RegDwigнt Visa BUXX?
 
1:16 AM
@tchrist I was going to chime in on credit-card use but I see @RegDwigнt already made my point for me. As long as I don't carry a balance (and why would I?) I can use my card for free, plus there are tons of side-benefits, like cash back.
Most places here don't give discounts for cash. Of course, any place that does, I'd use cash, if it were available.
But since the cost of the credit-card transactions is (unfairly, I admit) distributed to all customers, I may as well use the card.
The solution is to allow vendors to refuse cards with high fees, and to allow vendors to post cash-discounted prices. Both practices are forbidden by the CC companies.
But using a CC for all purchases is very convenient. And it literally makes me money. I get free money for having that convenience.
 
1:42 AM
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 I pay €15 a year for my credit card, but that is all.
I have never been in debt on it, so that may be different.
However, debit cards, which are standard here, are better: they're free, and you won't incur debt.
@RegDwigнt As a student, I got a credit card based on nothing.
I can use it to spend €2500 a month, no questions asked. I rarely use it, but anyway.
 
2:00 AM
Hi all. Trying to remember a phrase, I think it was from an NPR story, that was a fairly clear indicator of a certain age cutoff. It was something like, if you were younger than 30/40/50, you'd say the phrase "something something of", but if you were older you'd say "something something by". Any ideas?
 
@Cerberus We have debit cards here too. The difference is that you can't use them to buy stuff online (well, maybe you can now? but you didn't used to be able to).
@boflynn you're looking for the "something something"?
 
Interact is a good option, in my opinion.
 
I can't remember the specifics, the of vs. by might be wrong to.
But I thought it was just the difference of a preposition or a small word that indicated a change in generations.
 
@boflynn wow. That could be anything!
@skullpatrol Interac? yeah, that's what I mean by debit cards. Are you Canadian?
 
Yea, I've tried a bunch of horrible google searches but my phrases for it are so vague.
 
2:03 AM
I wish I could help you, but I think we need more information to go on.
 
What is an NPR story?
 
My guess is that it was on the "A Way with Words" radio program, waywordradio.org
Searching through their archives now.
Ah ha!
It was "on accident" vs. "by accident"
 
Link please.
 
I'll try to find something more substantial, but here's a forum post on it: waywordradio.org/discussion/topics/on-accident-vs-by-accident
 
Thanks :-)
 
2:10 AM
That was the piece that reminded me of the phrase, now I'm off to find a better source.
If you don't mind me asking, how would you phrase it and how old are you?
 
@boflynn "on accident" is how my children say it, because (I imagine) they haven't learned the rule yet, and they are instead generalizing "on purpose"-> "on accident"
 
33 here, while it was hard to think about how I'd naturally say it, I went with on accident
 
@boflynn I'm 36 (geez! already!) and I, and every grown up I know, says "by accident". Also I'm in Canada, if that matters.
 
I was talking with my mother, when I was trying to explain it to her without saying the phrase, I said "the opposite of on purpose", she switched to "by accident"
Ah, US Florida here.
Now the problem is that I'm overthinking it. Will have to convince the wife to trick me into saying it in a month or so when my guard is down.
 
2:14 AM
Yea, the more I say it the more is sounds wrong, but when I first hit that page I thought "oh yea, the phrase was 'on accident'"
Hrm.
 
People tend to remember things that sound strange.
 
The corpus of contemporary American English agrees that nobody uses "on accident"
But hey. preposition choice is somewhat arbitrary. Maybe you're just cutting-edge, linguistically.
 
Ha, I think I prefer that.
Cheers all
 
Later
 
Sing and rejoice!
11
A: What great writers have used coordinating conjunctions at the start of sentences?

tchristExamples from Tolkien’s Legendarium For my own demonstrative examples, I’ve chosen just one “great writer”, so that some measure of frequency of this phenomenon within a single writer’s works can be cleaned. These are all from the twentieth century. Across The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, and Th...

I am supremely pissed that a certain someone downvotes like every new posting of mine when the sun comes up in the Indies. But at least the rest of the world thinks he’s a jerk, too.
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Young people of small letters do so.
Or little letters.
Or few letters.
BRB
 
2:26 AM
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Right, I can buy almost anything in Holland online with a debit card, and most things elsewhere through Paypal, but occasionally I need a credit card there.
I used to use it in restaurants that didn't accept debit cards, but nowadays there is 0 chance of that happening: it's either debit card or no card at all.
 
@Cerberus yeah paypal, where accepted, makes not using a credit-card easier now. But it's a relatively recent thing. I got my first credit-card at 18 specifically so I could order stuff through mail.
 
Doesn't the system reverse serial down voting on you @tchrist?
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Yes, I got my credit card when was around 18 too, also just for buying things in e.g. Canada! Shipping from Canada was relatively cheap, so I bought a lot of books from Canada through ABE Books.
I'm not sure I bought stuff in Holland online in those days.
Would you believe I actually had books shipped here from Australia? It was cheaper than America, let alone <shivers> Europe...
It took maybe 1.5 months by sea from our antipodes.
 
That's free enterprise for ya :-)
 
@tchrist Do you say usuary? I say usury. But Wikipaedia also recognises your spelling...
 
2:32 AM
20 mins ago, by Mr. Shiny and New 安宇
@boflynn "on accident" is how my children say it, because (I imagine) they haven't learned the rule yet, and they are instead generalizing "on purpose"-> "on accident"
 
I agree.
On accident sounds like...contamination. Analogy.
 
@Cerberus does Wikipedia recognize your spelling of Wikipedia?
 
Wikipedia (/ˌwɪkɨˈpiːdiə/ or /ˌwɪkiˈpiːdiə/ WIK-i-PEE-dee-ə) is a free-access, free content Internet encyclopedia, supported and hosted by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation. Almost anyone who can access the site can edit almost any of its articles. Wikipedia is the sixth most popular website and constitutes the Internet's largest and most popular general reference work. As of 2014, it has 18 billion page views and nearly 500 million unique visitors each month. Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger launched Wikipedia on January 15, 2001. Sanger coined its name, a portmanteau of wiki (from the Hawaiian...
Yes.
 
Is that Latin?
Wikipaedia
 
No, it is just like encyclopaedia.
 
2:44 AM
Then don't you think it should be offered as an alternative spelling upfront @Cerberus?
 
How do you mean offered?
 
Parenthetically
Along with the difference in pronunciation
 
Oh, there.
Yes, it ought to be.
 
@Cerberus Are you the most active chat user on the network?
 
He certainly is the nicest.
 
2:53 AM
@GnomeSlice Naturally! I win!
 
@Cerberus Usury I don’t, but I don’t want to offend the Usurers.
 
@skullpatrol Haha you are too kind, I am far from the nicest. I have arguments with people...
 
No you don’t!
 
@tchrist Hmm now I am confused.
@tchrist I do!!
You're wrong!
 
You bicker.
 
2:55 AM
@Cerberus I appear to come in second.
But you have like double mine.
That's impressive.
 
You quarrel and quibble.
 
What do you do?
 
You cross swords and lock horns.
But you do not argue.
That would be beneath you.
 
@skullpatrol I'm pretty nice.
 
For that is the domain not of Cerberus but of Tartarus.
 
2:57 AM
Yes @gnome btw thanks for the tunes
 
@GnomeSlice Wow! You have progressed fast.
 
@Cerberus I've been around for uh... three years?
 
I, on the other hand, am a born fighter :(
 
I had a six month ban and I still have the most messages in The Bridge by far.
 
2:59 AM
@tchrist What is the difference?
@GnomeSlice Still, a while ago you were nowhere near 2nd place.
 
@Cerberus I’m sorry, but complaints is down the hall to your left, and inquiries down the hall to your right.
 
Haha, have you been checking?
 
@tchrist That was just a question.
@GnomeSlice No, but still.
 
I smelt an enquiry.
 
No you didn't
 
3:00 AM
You claim I do not argue, but I do cross words.
 
Swords
 
@GnomeSlice You appear to come in 5th, when I look at the board
Cerb, badp, Reg, Kit, GnomeSlice
 
Oh, it was on the wrong tab.
Yep.
Three people from ELU in the top 4
that's crazy
 
@skullpatrol Puzzling, isn’t it?
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Where’s that from?
 
3:04 AM
What is that URL?
 
@GnomeSlice EL&U about language. We simply practice what we preach.
 
Actually, it’s because all the top users here are polyglots, so we have more words that most people.
 
That, too.
Although Kit does not often speak non-English.
 
I'm on mobile @tchrist so I don't know what "it" you are referring to in "puzzling isn't it?"
 
3:07 AM
@skullpatrol "Swords".
 
@skullpatrol He was doing cross word puzzles.
 
icic
😏
 
3:48 AM
phew! finished sorting the lego. for now.
now if only I had 50% more boxes to put it in.
 
3:59 AM
Impressive.
 
I have 22 large boxes and 24 small boxes and one huge tub and 4 other boxes and about 20 unopened sets and nowhere to put it all #firstworldlegoproblems
 
Poor, poor you.
 
No need to do stupid Twitter thingies, you know. Ever.
 
Do you know I am seriously contemplating renovations to my house to help solve my problem?
 
4:02 AM
@Cerberus It was a taipeau.
 
Hilarious.
@tchrist Qu'est-ce que c'est?
 
@Cerberus on twitter it isn't stupid. It's a feature of the system, and in fact required behaviour for certain things to happen.
 
It is very stupid, Twitter.
Only used by other people btw., just so you know.
 
I was going for usurious at one point, and fumbled it up into usuary. I say usury.
 
@Cerberus twitter is twitter. whatevs. Some people use it to good effect.
 
4:03 AM
And poor affect.
 
Politicians use Twitter.
And journalists.
Hardly anybody else.
 
Hm.
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 I should appear there too if I did not delete my hundred previous accounts.
 
@Cerberus The celebrated, perhaps.
 
@Cerberus One of my Marias use Twitter.
 
4:05 AM
@Cerberus ? millions of people use twitter.
 
@tchrist Like whom?
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Old people. Unhip people.
 
For example, John Scalzi, the author, uses twitter, and his recent analytics show that most of his communication with fans is now on twitter rather than his blog.
 
I use neither Facebook nor Twitter. I am too cool.
 
@Cerberus old people don't know what twitter is.
 
Twitter is used by old people who do so because they think young people use it. They are wrong.
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 All politicians use it. All newspapers quote from it.
 
user116848
4:07 AM
Me too. I don't use fb or twitter. :D
 
@Cerberus So? politicians are using it because young people are on it.
 
user116848
Howdy
 
1 min ago, by Cerberus
Twitter is used by old people who do so because they think young people use it. They are wrong.
 
user116848
facebook is for girls I suppose. But it's just my perception :)
 
user116848
Everything likey likey
 
4:08 AM
@Cerberus I submit that you know less about twitter than I do.
 
@Arrowfar Haha kind of true.
 
user116848
hah :D
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Submission denied. Try again next month.
 
I am drinking some coffee. It is a beautiful Thu afternoon here.
 
Is Thu a Singaporese holiday?
 
4:09 AM
@JasperLoy Thursday? what nonsense is that ! oh wait, it's thursday here too
 
@Cerberus No, lol.
 
when I was in university we called it "Rhursday" because our schedule was labelled MTWRF
 
Huh?
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 You should be sleeping.
 
M for Monday, T for Tuesday, W for Wednesday, R for Rhursday, F for Friday
 
4:10 AM
??
 
@JasperLoy enh. maybe soon.
 
You can't have two days labeled "T"
 
Is it because R is the first letter in Thursday that Tuesday does not have?
No, there is H.
 
@Cerberus It's the pigeonhole principle. You are compressing the day names into one letter each. You can't have two pigeons in the same hole, so they had to pick a different hole for Thursday.
 
By why not H?
 
4:12 AM
Why H?
 
Because it comes before R?
 
H makes no sense whatsoever.
 
The next sound is "R" in Thursday.
 
@Arrowfar I thought that was tumblr’s job.
 
I'm sure they didn't look at what letters Tuesday and Thursday had in common.
Who would do that?
 
4:13 AM
Do you like arguing with drunkards?
 
Only an insane person
 
Cross words?
 
Instead, they picked the consonant alphabetically closest to T, excluding S because that'd be confusing.
 
Uhh.
 
@Cerberus I dunno. Can they argue?
 
4:14 AM
Ridiculous.
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Always.
 
Anyway, the wherefores and whyhows and whatnots aren't important.
What matters is that the Powers That Be chose R
so Rhursday it is.
 
The next sound is R
 
If they had chosen any other letter we wouldn't have called it Rhursday
 
user116848
May be because R is pronounced visibly here
 
They could have chosen Z and we'd have challed it Zhursday
 
4:15 AM
ThuRsday
 
I'm 99% sure it's not because of the sound
 
This is a question to be asked on the main site, lol.
 
QRSTUVWXYZ <- no day starts with a vowel, so U is out, S is out because Sat Sun, so R. why not R.
 
I'm 100% sure it is. @mr.shiny
 
Also R and T are siblings on the keyboard
 
4:17 AM
ThuRsday
 
Tell you what, @skull. You go to U of T and ask them. I'll wait.
 
I will ask here :-)
 
actually it seems multiple universities use the same MTWRF shorthand.
 
@mr.shiny don't take me seriously pal
 
user116848
Oh, C'mon guys why are we debating this :-)
 
4:20 AM
It is an interesting question.
 
user116848
Stupid alphabets.
 
@skullpatrol I don't, not too much. But now I'm curious about how long MTWRF has been around, when it started, who started it
 
@Arrowfar Letters of the alphabet.
 
Me too
 
Again, pretty silly.
We have dinsdag and donderdag, but I have never seen such a stupid abbreviation.
If needed, we do di and do.
 
4:22 AM
Abbreviations are stupid.
 
Or just d and d.
Yeah, often they are.
 
Like you said Hday is acceptable
MTWHF
 
@Cerberus It's perfectly logical when you're printing, eg, a course calendar and you need to be brief. CS101 MWF2100 TR1700
 
I have no idea what that means and why you would need that.
 
Or X and then you can use it as a variable :D
 
4:26 AM
@Cerberus CS101 is the course code. MWF2100 means monday, wednesday, friday at 9pm, TR1700 means tuesday, thursday at 5pm.
It appears to be a standard format in universities in the US and Canada, at least.
 
Like Malcolm X
 
What is wrong with a slightly longer description?
 
@Cerberus It's too long.
course calendars are already huge.
do a google search on MWRTF and look at the results. They're all university class times.
 
Full of rules that nobody follows.
 
Abbreviations often function like jargon: a tradition everybody knows is very useful, except that you often don't really need it.
 
4:29 AM
Of course, now that course calendars are probably digitized, abbreviations aren't as important.
 
MTWXF
 
@skullpatrol yes, they could have used X. But they used R.
 
They should have picked Th instead.
 
@Cerberus That uses more letters.
Why use two letters when you can use one?
 
Because it is only 2% longer and 100% clearer?
 
4:30 AM
It's not at all any clearer.
Everyone knows what the R means.
 
I bet new students do not.
Nor foreign students.
 
I instantly knew what it meant when I saw my timetable.
it was pretty obvious.
 
I could always abbreviate OED as such.
Or PG.
 
Then they need to learn.
 
Or OE.
 
4:31 AM
Context matters, man
 
Sure.
But it's still weird.
 
Here is the context. You are given a document. You know that it contains days of the week and times of day.
All the days of the week are abbreviated M, W, T, F.
Oh, and there's one called R
WTF is R?
process of elimination explains it for you
 
My conclusion would be that I was wrong, it can't be the days of the week.
 
But it has to be. It's a timetable.
 
Nobody would ever insert a random letter.
 
4:33 AM
yeah, then it musn't be random, right?
 
Nothing ever has to be something in a bureaucratic institution.
 
It must correspond to ONE of the days
gee, which one could it be?
Could it be Monday? Wednesday? Friday?
 
No, it must be the abbreviations of the buildings. Or the departments.
 
A good student would learn.
 
Or just some internal code that nobody would understand.
 
4:34 AM
No, that is clearly indicated in a different cryptic abbreviation.
(each building has a two letter building code and each room has a number)
 
squints
 
So the Mechanical Engineering building is MC and room 101 is MC101
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 No, those two-letter codes are the weekdays.
Just with some random metters.
 
The ones that refuse to accept R means Thursday are in the wrong place :D
 
MC is Monday Course, as opposed to, e.g., TuT "Tuesday Tutorial".
 
4:35 AM
@Cerberus Look. If you saw my first year timetable you'd immediately understand it. I promise. Or else you probably aren't smart enough to be in university.
 
growls
 
It's just not that hard.
 
You don't have to be very smart to attend university.
 
You're just being difficult.
 
Do you enjoy arguing with a drunkard?
 
4:36 AM
@Cerberus I dunno. Am I doing it?
 
Yes. Why?
 
drunkard: a person who is habitually drunk
 
> a person who is drunk
 
That is the only time you argue
 
@Cerberus no. That's just "a drunk"
 
4:37 AM
No, he argues all the times. Like me.
 
a drunkard is always drunk
 
No he doesn't
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 You're still doing it.
 
Yes he does
 
@skullpatrol You have no idea. Or else you're just being contrary. In which case it'll be five quid to continue.
 
4:38 AM
Sry :(
 
@Cerberus I'm not doing it, because you're not habitually drunk, even if you're drunk right now.
 
Am I not?
What is a habit?
 
A monastic robe?
 
@Cerberus A drunkard is essentially never not drunk.
 
4:39 AM
Nah.
 
You are frequently not drunk.
 
I deny everything.
 
The fact that you are sometimes drunk doesn't make you a drunkard.
Therefore I'm NOT arguing with a drunkard.
Therefore I deny any knowledge about whether or not I enjoy such a thing.
 
I refuse to acknowledge this strict definition.
 
Also what if I'm drunk?
would that change things?
 
4:40 AM
No, then you'd still be doing it.
 
I have been drinking. Drambuie, on the rocks.
Arguing as a drunkard?
 
Can't say I'm surprised.
 
Well, I only had one.
 
Let's just call it a drunken argument, then.
 
This calls for some fisticuffs.
brandishes fists
 
4:41 AM
I do not have fists.
 
oh. awkward.
 
Quite.
 
brandishes rolled-up newspaper
 
This calls for some tail-wagging.
Oh. Awkward.
Dawn is upon me.
 
wonders where he got a newspaper
 
4:42 AM
shakes non-fist
 
Dan?
Who's Dan?
 
He's big and bright.
 
It was better before you changed it
 
And lacking a w.
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Well, you can't have nice things.
 
yeah it's late and I have a meeting to.... day. later today.
 
4:43 AM
Ouch.
How early?
What time is it now?
 
@Cerberus I have nice things. They're plastic and sorted into boxes.
@Cerberus almost 1am. The meeting is at 10.
 
But you need more of them!
 
@Cerberus yeah, more nice things!
 
Hmm then you still have time to get a decent night's sleep.
 
yeah especially since the kids are away, so I can sleep in.
 
4:44 AM
Yay!
 
@Cerberus Complaints complaints. Now you want a quarrel. Can you even wind that crossbow?
Damn it.
 
again, better before you fixed it
 
@tchrist I am not Odysseus, and we have no such futuristic contraptions.
 
wind that cross boy! Dan is upon you!
 
Well, it was an acciddent.
Ok, then a cross boy is all you get.
 
4:46 AM
winds cross boy
 
heh
 
We all know who the cross boy is.
By the way, does wind mean something obscene?
 
@Cerberus The seahorse?
 
@Cerberus it should
 
Do we have a seahorse here?
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Oh, you people...
 
4:47 AM
Do you mean: river horse?
 
Estuarial perhaps.
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Yes, Siri.
 
@Mr.ShinyandNew安宇 Stop it, Altavista.
 
guys. I was trying to be Google. sulks
I guess it wasn't a good impression
 
yeah I don't look like that though
 
4:54 AM
Give it a few more years.
 
I would have to grow my hair
 
You could.
You have twenty years.
 

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