Warsaw Will

Joined: December 3, 2010

Number of comments posted: 1039

Number of votes received: 357

I'm a TEFL teacher working in Poland. I have a blog - Random Idea English - where I do some grammar stuff for advanced students and have the occasional rant against pedantry.

Questions Submitted

Natural as an adverb

In his entry on ‘try and do’, Fowler calls it “an idiom that...

apostrophe with expressions of distance or time

I imagine everyone uses an apostrophe with expressions of di...

tonne vs ton

I’m all for the metric system, and I’m sure a lot of British...

Tell About

On ESL websites I sometimes see instructions to students of ...

“reach out”

I’m not usually a peever, but I do make an exception for bus...

Fit as a butcher’s dog

Has anybody come across the idiom “Fit as a butcher’s dog”, ...

You’ve got another think/thing coming

If you’re over a certain age, you will probably be familiar ...

When “one of” many things is itself plural

There are all sorts of things I believed in then which I don...

Recent Comments

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@HS - It seems that the pronunciation of both ligatures had ...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@HS - In the case of foetus, in the original Latin it was fe...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

Interesting, that in British books, if Ngram is anything to ...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@Chris B - my misunderstanding :)...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

I missed these Ngrams off the last one as I was getting 'Inv...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@Chris B - fair enough, but as you say, it is rather a subcu...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@HS - It seems we can put quite a lot of these inconsistenci...

on: “it’s the put-er-on-er-er”

@jayles - it's in the OED - so there's your answer. I notice...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@HS - I think you are investing me with more expertise than ...

on: On Tomorrow

As has been mentioned several times above, "on the morrow" i...

on: “it’s the put-er-on-er-er”

@Liverwort - Oh, ye of little faith! :) And here's the one f...

on: “it’s the put-er-on-er-er”

There are a couple of videos at YouTube, both American - the...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@HS - some of these spelling conventions seem to have arrive...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles :)...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles - OK, I give you that, and I can see you might be ri...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles - I'm sorry to harp on, but I simply don't accept th...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

@jayles - I think it's a question of spelling. Fetus vs foet...

on: Social vs Societal

@Rocky - I talked simply about social change happening at a ...

on: Mentee?

In a follow-up to the blog post in jayles' link, the writer,...

on: Social vs Societal

@Rocky - UKIP if you want to, but I think some of us would p...

on: Have diphthongs gone for good?

I think there are two different things here: The first ma...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles -I think perhaps we're a little at cross-purposes. I...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles - I haven't checked it yet, but I'm still not clear:...

on: Mentee?

@jayles- he has a great argument - somebody comes across a w...

on: Mentee?

@HS - Apprenticeship and mentoring are two totally different...

on: Natural as an adverb

@HS - They don't sound right as Standard English, but the fi...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

@jayles - well, it's definite that people don't use it, but ...

on: therefore, thus as conjunctions

@ps.nikki - Jennifer showed the "formal correct" punctuation...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@jayles - I bow to your greater knowledge of OE and ME, and ...

on: Which sound “normal” to you?

For me, A definitely expresses annoyance: I think we'd stres...

on: Mentee?

Whether it's dreadful or not is a personal issue, and once I...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@jayles - Sorry, I regret parts of that last comment. It did...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@jayles - Language is never worth starting WWIII over, regar...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@Afzal - I think you'll find that Cooke's complaint about th...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

That should, of course, have been 'idea ... comes from' and ...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@Afzal - OK, I concede on Alistair Cooke's British birth; I...

on: “I’ve got” vs. “I have”

@Moucon - I wonder what you mean exactly when you say 'I've ...

on: Pronunciation of indefinite article “a”

@Afzal - I'm intrigued as to just what nature of disaster oc...

on: In actuality, actually

@durendal - you might want to check your grammar before thro...

on: Social vs Societal

@Rashad - I enjoyed your first reply - it certainly made me ...

on: Social vs Societal

@Az - It is possible to constructively disagree with someone...

on: Pronunciation Etiquette—Hypothetical Question

Nepal - from Wikipedia - in English - ne-PAWL; in Nepali: ने...

on: Pronunciation Etiquette—Hypothetical Question

@jayles - I don't think HS's remarks were so much about the ...

on: Pronunciation Etiquette—Hypothetical Question

My favourite dictionary (Oxford Advanced Learner's) defines ...

on: Pronunciation Etiquette—Hypothetical Question

As regards names, I think you should try and get as close as...

on: What does “Curb your dog” mean?

@Brus - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curb_%28road%29...

on: “I’m just saying”

@Skeeter Lewis - is that perhaps a polite expression for spa...

on: Do’s and Don’t's

@Carl45 - Sorry to be the cause of your biggest pet peeve, ...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles and Jasper - many apologies - I got confused with al...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - Sorry, but you've totally lost me. No, don't try a...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - I don't use any of these, except for the original...

on: What does “Curb your dog” mean?

According to one source (link below) it all started in New Y...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - sorry that should have been new info later. Can yo...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - within the structure of SVO etc English also puts...

on: Proper use of st, nd, rd, and th — ordinal indicators

This is quite interesting, especially the comments, from Ben...

on: What does “Curb your dog” mean?

@porsche - 'the modern world' - does that mean the modern wo...

on: On Tomorrow

@jayles - the problem with that is that Monday can be used i...

on: What does “Curb your dog” mean?

Just to forestall any misunderstandings - kerb (BrE) = curb ...

on: “How is everything tasting?”

The best practice is, of course, to encourage waiting or any...

on: “You have two choices”

@HS - math is simply American for maths: Funnily enough t...

on: “You have two choices”

@HS - I referred to PP as his comments are now labelled Hair...

on: “You have two choices”

@Hairy Scot - "just another damned Americanism sent to plagu...

on: What is the word for intentionally incorrect spelling?

@Peter Reynolds - Thanks....

on: What does “Curb your dog” mean?

Just to add to what Hairy Scot and Brus have said, I would h...

on: “admits to”

a British perspective: at the BBC (and other media seem to h...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - do I not remember you advocating keeping technical...

on: Pronouncing “str” like “shtr” as in “shtrong” “shtrange”

@Mrs Davenport - I agree with you that a lot of comments of ...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@jayles - I think I'll just stick with subject-verb inversio...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@Jasper - I've just noticed a difference between you two exa...

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

@Jasper, I wouldn't call that fronting but simple inversion,...

on: “You have two choices”

@porsche - OK, I accept that we can use it idiomatically to ...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@Jasper - she's not against teaching grammar, but would pref...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@jayles - I quite agree with you about terminology, and in c...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@jayles - I'll have you know that the 'purist' English spoke...

on: and so...

@TheYellowRobot - I've realised that we can also have a resu...

on: and so...

@TheYellowRobot - some people make silly typos, and so do I,...

on: and so...

@TheYellowRabbit - 'John loves to dance and so does Marie' s...

on: apostrophe with expressions of distance or time

@jayles - Yes, I checked out Google Books for this occurring...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - we'll have to agree to differ. On a particular occa...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - " Ideally, it would be perfect if we could create a...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - 'If I won the lottery, I'd buy a new house' with pr...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - I think you're confusing linguists and grammarians ...

on: Pronouncing “str” like “shtr” as in “shtrong” “shtrange”

@Jasper - It's OK, I wasn't suggesting you were responsible ...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - OK, I follow your example now, but I think you're ...

on: Social vs Societal

@Rashad - I'm going to play devil's advocate here. My dictio...

on: Pronouncing “str” like “shtr” as in “shtrong” “shtrange”

@Jasper - A bit off topic, but I couldn't help noticing that...

on: take it on/off and put it on/off

@jayles - it's my theory that both Polish and German have ph...

on: Semicolon between sentences joined by a coordinating conjunction

@jayles - On Ngram, for 'for_CONJ' I'm getting 'no valid Ngr...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@sundy - of course you're right, which is why, in EFL, we re...

on: “This is she” vs. “This is her”

@Jasper - I don't think it's likely to spill over into Polan...

on: Pronouncing “str” like “shtr” as in “shtrong” “shtrange”

Perhaps they're Sean Connery fans....

on: A New Correlative Conjunction?

I don't think there's anything new here. This is Oxford Onli...

on: take it on/off and put it on/off

Ah! Phrasal verbs! The foreign learner's delight. But you're...

on: Semicolon between sentences joined by a coordinating conjunction

@jayles: I don't think deprecated, necessarily, just seen as...

on: Pronunciation of “often”

@Peter Reynolds - unless they're going to publish different ...

on: Pronunciation of “often”

@Peter Reynolds - I would suggest that no accents or dialect...

on: What is the word for intentionally incorrect spelling?

@Peter Reynolds - interesting - Google Books won't let me se...

on: “This is she” vs. “This is her”

@Jasper - I'll certainly echo Brus's last paragraph and Pete...

on: “This is she” vs. “This is her”

@Jasper - I really think you're making an interpretation I j...

on: “This is she” vs. “This is her”

@Jasper - Well, I for one found Peter Reynold's 'anecdote', ...

« previous   1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9