Author Topic: Grammar that makes you cringe  (Read 352541 times)

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5100 on: February 07, 2019, 03:05:42 pm »
Quote
The situation has parallels with the US-China trade dispute last year, when US ships raced across the world to deliver soybeans before Beijing could impose tariffs on them. Some boats were stuck in harbours after failing to miss the deadline.
Failing to miss?  :facepalm:
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)

T42

  • Gaulois réfractaire
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5101 on: February 08, 2019, 09:23:01 am »
"Stuck in harbours" is a wee bit phunny too.
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5102 on: February 09, 2019, 07:30:32 am »

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5103 on: February 11, 2019, 05:29:55 pm »
Can't remember if we've had this one before, but those strange impersonal-imperative-subjunctive passive-aggressive announcements you get on trains: eg "passengers are reminded to take all their belongings with them when leaving the train", which is bad enough, but it usually gets mangled into "passengers are reminded to take all your belongings with you when leaving the train" which is worse.

I think the problem is that they want to make it clear that the message is addressing passengers (as opposed to whom exactly? The driver?) but the indirect formulation is confusing when you're actually addressing passengers directly (albeit over the PA).

Either way, it makes me cringe.

Tim Hall

  • I want to eat the fleeting shade of your lashes
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5104 on: February 18, 2019, 08:37:04 am »
Pootling around the EDF website* I stumbled across this:

[
Quote
They also let us collect this information remotely, so we’ll no longer need to ask you for meter reads.

WTF is a "meter read"?

* see the smart meter thread in a  bit.
There are two ways you can get exercise out of a bicycle: you can
"overhaul" it, or you can ride it.  (Jerome K Jerome)

Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5105 on: February 18, 2019, 09:13:04 am »
Sportspeople seeing how many times they can fit the word "obviously" into an interview.  Usually abbreviated to "obvusly" or "ovusly" for the sake of brevity.

I can hear my English teacher, "What the person is saying is that they "obviously" don't have a wide enough vocabulary to express themselves".

As for the obligatory prefix filler "so" which I mentioned on this thread many years ago, it has now reached truly epidemic proportions and is "so" widespread as to rival the ghastly "like" of yoof-speak.  Indeed it's actually being used in written form - a post here the other day (no names mentioned) started, "So... ".

Torslanda

  • Professional Gobshite
  • Just a tart for retro kit . . .
    • John's Bikes
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5106 on: February 18, 2019, 09:38:59 am »
See also "Well, you know..."

If I hear you contract this to "Ye'oh" be assured I have contemplated termination with extreme prejudice.
VELOMANCER

Well that's the more blunt way of putting it but as usual he's dead right.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5107 on: February 18, 2019, 10:37:35 am »
...
I can hear my English teacher, "What the person is saying is that they "obviously" don't have a wide enough vocabulary to express themselves".
...

Then they'd both be completely wrong and more than a bit of a dick.
!nataS pihsroW

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5108 on: February 18, 2019, 11:05:57 am »
As for the obligatory prefix filler "so" which I mentioned on this thread many years ago, it has now reached truly epidemic proportions...

I used to find that irritating but I've come to terms with it now. Filler is all it is. And it has only replaced previous filler words that were probably equally irritating when new.

Reaching 'epidemic proportions' is pretty much an essential trait of language, otherwise it is mere dialect.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5109 on: February 18, 2019, 11:44:06 am »
I did a presentation skillz thing some time back – they had you learn and present a passage without any filler words or circumlocutions while they videoed it.

The result (and it's very difficult to do) of speaking with unadulterated precision is that you come across as rude and arrogant, and it's very offputting to anyone listening. It's also difficult to follow because we need those spaces to catch up and digest what's being said. Fillers and similar serve a vital purpose in both spoken and written communication. They're only generational in the terms used, they're a consistent component of how we communicate.

The idea that they're somehow a mask for inadequate vocabulary or lack of intelligence is nonsense.
!nataS pihsroW

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5110 on: February 18, 2019, 12:12:49 pm »
I did a presentation skillz thing some time back – they had you learn and present a passage without any filler words or circumlocutions while they videoed it.

The result (and it's very difficult to do) of speaking with unadulterated precision is that you come across as rude and arrogant, and it's very offputting to anyone listening. It's also difficult to follow because we need those spaces to catch up and digest what's being said. Fillers and similar serve a vital purpose in both spoken and written communication. They're only generational in the terms used, they're a consistent component of how we communicate.

The idea that they're somehow a mask for inadequate vocabulary or lack of intelligence is nonsense.
... and even if it was they were, it can't be helped that some people in the anglophone world are not blessed with perfect oratory skills. Get over it!
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5111 on: February 18, 2019, 12:49:15 pm »
Spoken language is different from written language, obviously. If you read the unedited transcript of a speech or interview word for word, even a scripted one, it looks very messy due to all the fillers, repetitions and hesitations. Dialogue in a novel, for instance, is more akin to a script than the actual spoken words. You wouldn't want to read it otherwise.
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)

Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5112 on: February 18, 2019, 01:00:15 pm »
As for the obligatory prefix filler "so" which I mentioned on this thread many years ago, it has now reached truly epidemic proportions...
I used to find that irritating but I've come to terms with it now.
I'm not quite there yet. Thinking about it, my level of irritation might correlate closely with my general level of irritation with the person doing the speaking. So (!) I'm quite OK with it if the speaker's a tidy boy, like.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5113 on: February 18, 2019, 01:08:17 pm »
Spoken language is different from written language, obviously. If you read the unedited transcript of a speech or interview word for word, even a scripted one, it looks very messy due to all the fillers, repetitions and hesitations. Dialogue in a novel, for instance, is more akin to a script than the actual spoken words. You wouldn't want to read it otherwise.

Writing is done differently, but we still space, fill, and circumlocute – those are core components of a writer's style, of course.

Prefixes like 'so' are often spoken or written cues that a new statement is about to be introduced, they're attention grabbers.
!nataS pihsroW

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5114 on: February 18, 2019, 01:11:50 pm »
The Australian* "Look ..." is by far the more irritating way for sports personages to start their on-air replies.

They might as well start with "Fuck off! Let me explain this to you: "


*It has spread to plenty of other nations' athletes. But the Ozzies are the worst for it.
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5115 on: February 18, 2019, 01:32:06 pm »
Spoken language is different from written language, obviously. If you read the unedited transcript of a speech or interview word for word, even a scripted one, it looks very messy due to all the fillers, repetitions and hesitations. Dialogue in a novel, for instance, is more akin to a script than the actual spoken words. You wouldn't want to read it otherwise.

Writing is done differently, but we still space, fill, and circumlocute – those are core components of a writer's style, of course.

Prefixes like 'so' are often spoken or written cues that a new statement is about to be introduced, they're attention grabbers.
It's certainly different. Taking words as spoken and making them nicely readable can be tricky. But I do it because people pay me (sometimes!). Legal verbatim is in some ways easier because if it doesn't make sense, you don't have to make sense of it.

Meanwhile, I've discovered that Ugandans are particularly fond of turning every statement into a question and answer. They are ending the sentence with what? A question. And after the question comes what? The answer. The people doing this are who? The Ugandans. And they are doing this when? To tell you something.
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5116 on: February 18, 2019, 01:40:26 pm »
Pootling around the EDF website* I stumbled across this:

[
Quote
They also let us collect this information remotely, so we’ll no longer need to ask you for meter reads.

WTF is a "meter read"?

The act of reading a meter, as distinct from the data obtained by doing so (a "meter reading")?

Maybe I've spent too long fettling computers, where you might reasonably talk about "disk reads" or "memory reads".  I certainly wouldn't object to, say, "meter reads per second" when technically discussing the network overheads of polling smart meters for their data, but it seems wrong in a customer-facing context like that.

Possibly written by a non-Brit?
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5117 on: February 18, 2019, 01:43:43 pm »
As for the obligatory prefix filler "so" which I mentioned on this thread many years ago, it has now reached truly epidemic proportions and is "so" widespread as to rival the ghastly "like" of yoof-speak.  Indeed it's actually being used in written form - a post here the other day (no names mentioned) started, "So... ".

I do it all the time, at least in speech, it's just a normal and ordinary part of language, and anyone objecting to it comes across in much the same way as old people objecting to the use of 'cool'.  Preambles perform an important function of allowing the listener time to pay attention, and "So...." or "Right..."[1] is a conveniently natural sounding one that doesn't confusing the hearing people in the way that a full "Are you listening?" or "Ping?" handshake might.

In writing, only if I were deliberately attempting an informal style.  Which is most forum posts, tbh.


(I eschew ", like," (other than for ironic purposes) because I've been inoculated against that particular form of Valley Girl speak by prior experience of Mancunians.)


[1] Or even "Roit..."
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5118 on: February 18, 2019, 02:00:45 pm »
Interestingly, the amount of filliing in a conversation doesn't vary by education/social class (the two will always confound), but the type of filler does, from 'like' to 'actually.' I can't be bothered to find the study (there's quite a few). At the lower end of education/social class, fillers are shorter and used more frequently, higher up, they're longer but let frequent, for instance stepping through the syllable of ac-tual-ly and then pausing. The amount of time spent filling is much the same. Of course, the type of filler you use is a social class cue in itself.

It's very rare for anyone not to have sufficient vocabulary hence the nonsense of that teacher's statement, we all do. The different that education and a lot of reading gives us is access to a lot more synonyms and different ways of saying things.
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5119 on: February 18, 2019, 02:10:00 pm »
As for the obligatory prefix filler "so" which I mentioned on this thread many years ago, it has now reached truly epidemic proportions...
I used to find that irritating but I've come to terms with it now.
I'm not quite there yet......

Nor me. It was noticeable on "Winterwatch" that +TPTB had had a word with Gillian Burke, whose every phrase (nearly)used to start with "So...". It was almost entirely absent this time, thankfully. It is, like most things,  ok in moderation, but not as a blanket prefix.
We are making a New World (Paul Nash, 1918)

T42

  • Gaulois réfractaire
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5120 on: February 18, 2019, 02:10:26 pm »
"Produce" as used Transpondially to mean vegetables. "He was so bad they were throwing produce at him".
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5121 on: February 18, 2019, 02:30:10 pm »
Pootling around the EDF website* I stumbled across this:

[
Quote
They also let us collect this information remotely, so we’ll no longer need to ask you for meter reads.

WTF is a "meter read"?

The act of reading a meter, as distinct from the data obtained by doing so (a "meter reading")?

Maybe I've spent too long fettling computers, where you might reasonably talk about "disk reads" or "memory reads".  I certainly wouldn't object to, say, "meter reads per second" when technically discussing the network overheads of polling smart meters for their data, but it seems wrong in a customer-facing context like that.

Possibly written by a non-Brit?
As in "do a big shop" versus "put the shopping in the cupboard".
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5122 on: February 18, 2019, 02:52:06 pm »
I don't think I've ever seen read used as a noun outside set phrases, eg 'a good read'.

You could quibble that what the supplier is asking you for is a meter reading, but you have to perform a meter read in order to obtain the information. Admittedly, 'read the meter' is somewhat snappier than 'perform a meter read'.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5123 on: February 18, 2019, 03:01:30 pm »
Exactly. The latter is just an awful bit of verb-nouning.
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Grammar that makes you cringe
« Reply #5124 on: February 18, 2019, 03:08:19 pm »
We'll no longer need to ask you for meter reads.
... for meter readings.
... to read the meter.

There might be a technical difference between these but nothing that a customer as opposed to a meter technician (if there is such a job) could be expected to know about.
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)