Tags » Morphosyntax

Trump is an asshole, isn't he? Tag questions in English II

It’s frustrating when something looks really easy, but you just can’t get it right, isn’t it?  I hate it when I screw up the  1,529 more words

Tag, you're it: Tag questions in English I

It’s frustrating when something looks really easy, but you just can’t get it right, isn’t itI hate it when I screw up the  967 more words

How we're sounding stupid today: "their"

It never fails.  One evening I’ll be sitting around with friends discussing how the American right wing versus the American left wing defines “the establishment,” or the contrasting French and American understandings of religious freedom, or the lack of correspondence between the French and American categories of liberal, conservative, leftist, rightist, or something equally complex.  1,293 more words

Mystery solved: the Paris edition

Adam Gopnik’s Paris to the moon is the best writing that I know of on the experience of being an American ex-pat in Paris.  He maintains that the only… 1,152 more words

Speak to us of drinking, not of marriage

A Basque joke about the alleged difficulty of the Basque language: The Devil wanted to tempt the Basques to sin, so he decided to learn to speak Basque.  574 more words

How can you be 17 years old and 4 months old?

One of the properties of every known human language is that they are ambiguous.  Being “ambiguous” means that something can have more than one interpretation.  Humans are so good at “resolving” ambiguities (i.e., figuring out the intended interpretation) that we rarely notice them, but in fact almost everything that you will hear/read or say/write today will be ambiguous in some way or another. 331 more words

Go ahead, end this sentence without a preposition--if you can...

Of all of my students, this is the one on whom my work habits rubbed off. 

Déteindre sur: to rub off on. Ton pull à déteint sur ma chemise–il ne fallait pas les mettre ensemble au lavage.   12 more words