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That's a rule of thumb, to which there certainly are exceptions but it is a traditional rule. When speaking, we English-as-first-language people break the so-called "rules" all the time.
Chance Barbara, what is the premise of your new book? Then, to top it off, it seems that the rules are then changed to accommodate the way we speak.
Last year on the Fourth of July she talked about the Declaration of Independence on National Public Radio's All Things Considered, and for the bicentennial of the U. Constitution, NPR's Morning Edition commissioned her to copy-edit the Constitution. Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) Here is a question for the audience, to get to know you a bit. bw I'm over 40 Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) Hence that word "still" in your reply ...
Anu Garg (Moderator) Welcome to the eleventh online chat at Wordsmith. Anu Garg (Moderator) Our guest in today's chat is Barbara Wallraff, a senior editor at the Atlantic Monthly. Are you in the audience people who think of "fun" as a noun? Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) "How fun" -- does that sound normal to everyone now? Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) Steve, explain yourself? Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) I had a long conversation with Steven Pinker about this at one point. Daley My husband and I get into discussions proper usage in sentences like, "The baby looks like (him, he)." He argues for "he", saying that "like he does" is understood. Is there anything wrong with," What a fun time that was"?
However, I also realize that language lives in changes.
Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) The old-fashioned distinction (help me here, Big Steve!
Grammar *isn't* like arithmetic -- it really isn't true that there's only one right answer to any question.
Jane, that double possessive has a long history in English and it is useful, allowing us to distinguish between "I have a photograph of Jane," and "I have a photograph of Jane's." Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) See what I mean?
Physics *really* doesn't change, but what we know of it does ... wham I don't think other languages get to assimilate so many different ways of saying the same things - or so many 'local governments' as slang!
Her bestseller book "Word Court "will be published in paperback this month. Or are you old-fashioned -"fun"-is-an- adjective people like me? bw maybe Sparteye This is Jackie, using Sparteye's computer as she watches me. His opinion is that people under about 30 think of it as an adjective, as in, "How fun," while the more traditional view -- Steve, I'm not asking you how old you are -- is that it's a noun, as in "What fun that is! age differences Margo I hadn't thought about it, but I guess I use the word as a noun most of the time, as in "I'm having fun doing this." I don't use "how fun". I prefer "me", thinking that perhaps "like" could be viewed as a preposition in this case. Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) Daley, that happens to be a contentious issue. I *think* I read the other day that Safire is on your husband's side, but I'm on yours. Barbara Wallraff (Guest Speaker) I started out innocently introducing "fun" because it is a very interesting word. Jane Is it correct to say, "I'm a friend of Jane's"?
Would you please remind me of which website you contribute to? It shares some of the characteristics of an adjective and of a noun ... There can be only one correct answer to the question ? I hear this usage all the time, but it would seem that "I'm a friend of Jane" makes more sense.
For some seventeen years she reviewed the galleys of every article and story scheduled to appear in the magazine, advising authors about tone, style, consistency, and grammar.
Now she is responsible for a section of the magazine about the pleasures of life, and she writes on a variety of topics.