Warsaw Will

Joined: December 3, 2010

Number of comments posted: 1043

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: “Based out of”: Why?

@Buzzbuzz10 - I'm not really aware of these new meanings of ...

on: “as long as” vs. “so long as”

@Tanvir - I'm not with you, could you give us an example?...

on: “my” vs. “mine” in multiple owner possessive

@jayles - I do agree with you about keeping terminology to a...

on: “You have two choices”

Hi HS, I presume you are simply expressing a dislike of the ...

on: pre-order

I don't know about pre-book, although It seems to simply mea...

on: “my” vs. “mine” in multiple owner possessive

@jayles - I agree with you about terminology when teaching f...

on: “my” vs. “mine” in multiple owner possessive

@Syed Usman - " 'My' is not a possessive pronoun, 'My' is a ...

on: “Based out of”: Why?

@jayles - by colonial, I assume you mean American. Its curre...

on: “Based out of”: Why?

Hi Jim, I confess to the last one occasionally, but this may...

on: “It is I” vs. “It is me”

@jayles - Neither. I think you're trying to force an answer...

on: “Based out of”: Why?

Hi Jim. Try Googling it the other way round, i.e. for "pre-p...

on: Modal Remoteness & Tense

@Jasper - I wouldn't think so much about which goes with whi...

on: Modal Remoteness & Tense

@Jasper (1) "If it were ever mentioned, which happened ver...

on: “Based out of”: Why?

@providencejim - I think you're right about ''based out of' ...

on: Selfie

Come on. Up to speed, you two; selfie is so last month. This...

on: “Based out of”: Why?

I'd suggest that there is a slight difference: "You are g...

on: “a letter that had requested” vs. “a letter that requested”

I think this is a bit similar to a question jayles put a few...

on: Correspondence

@jayles - I stand corrected. The Channel 5 one is disappoin...

on: Modal Remoteness & Tense

Could you perhaps give examples of what you mean by modality...

on: Correspondence

@Skeeter Lewis - but I'm in total agreement with you that th...

on: Correspondence

@Skeeter - let's get things in perspective. I teach foreigne...

on: Correspondence

@Skeeter - 'does it really matter?' - the quote I followed t...

on: Correspondence

@Skeeter - there are quite a few words out there I don't lik...

on: Correspondence

Whoops - A book by Cornelius Walker, republished in 2003....

on: Correspondence

@Skeeter - as a teacher I've learnt that 'never' is a dange...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@AnWulf - you seem to have stumbled across something interes...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Chris B - Quite agree with you about touch base etc, in fac...

on: Tell About

@providencejim - I've been doing a bit of digging, and there...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@jayles - interesting about 'trainings'. As to the peopl...

on: Word in question: Conversate

Back on topic - vattafairefoote made a very good point right...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@jayles (2) - sorry, I misunderstood your earlier comment ab...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@jayles (1) - the truth is that either multinationals 'sweep...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@HS - 'If you are happy with rubbish like "conversate", "wou...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@jayles (2) - Are you writing for the Daily Mail now? This i...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@jayles (1) - "How would you feel if you had English forced ...

on: Word in question: Conversate

I meant enriched, of course, not enrichened. What an abomina...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@HS - for at least five hundred years some people have been ...

on: Tell About

@providencejim - Ah! The vagaries of Google Books. I've just...

on: Word in question: Conversate

@HS - and thank God we don't have such an equivalent, and th...

on: “If I was” vs. “If I were”

@alexandre - I think we all knew that 'if I were you' was an...

on: Tell About

Hi providencejim - in the post on my blog (link above) I lis...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@jayles -Yup. First class this morning was 7.00, so the alar...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@jayles and HS - the noun in its figurative sense goes back ...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - we may have a somewhat arbitrary spelling system, bu...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

At the cutting edge of spelling - that's a new one on me. Be...

on: Plural last name ending in “z”

@Larkin - I second Hairy Scot - I don't see any reason why s...

on: “I’ve got” vs. “I have”

@WW - dour is also known in England, but usually pronounced ...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

AnWulf - I grant you that most British dictionaries list it ...

on: Plural s-ending Possessives

For a simple plural, definitely no apostrophe; I would go fo...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

re: feedback as a noun. I've just noted that Michael Quinion...

on: Tell About

Going by Ngram, it certainly seems to occur more in American...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - I agree with you about the hyphenated phrasal verbs,...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

A few (rather long) thoughts about business jargon, business...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - The problem with commissioning purposes - ‘it lacks ...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@jayles - a few typos in the last paragraph: 'Google it' B...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@jayles - in terms of common usage, linguists would normally...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - re: assertionism - sorry, that's a neologism, possib...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - The BBC commissions programmes from independent prod...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus - I concede your first point - actually I had already ...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

@Brus 1) horrible is totally subjective, and has nothing...

on: “feedback” and “check in”

1. Capitals - I think this is OK as the whole page takes i...

on: Plural form of anonymous

I pefer, you pefer, he pefers...

on: Plural form of anonymous

I pefer the slightly different - "Thus, the heroes of toda...

on: Do’s and Don’t's

@Darren Lee - on second thoughts, perhaps not so whacky, as ...

on: Plural of name ending in Y

@Hekter Hairfoot McGlammery - I don't doubt you, but I thoug...

on: Pronunciation: aunt

@WordMasterRick - Merriam-Webster gives both pronunciations ...

on: Do’s and Don’t's

@Darren Lee - I use an apostrophe in do's myself, but that's...

on: Plural of name ending in Y

@Hekter Hairfoot McGlammery - the Seton bit may be true, but...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

Fair enough, mate. (Actually, I never say mate; it's not in ...

on: Plural form of anonymous

In 'Alcoholics Anonymous' it's still an adjective - meaning ...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

@Jasper - there's no reason why different word classes can'...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

@jayles - another way is to google, for example "words endin...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

To return to topic, my motivation behind that rather long co...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

@jayles - I'm still not sure whether you're talking with you...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

@jayles - I'm a little confused. Who relies on what handful ...

on: Motives vs. Motivation

@Rahul kumar Gupta - Hi. I have a question, and this is pure...

on: According to ME, you, him....

I've just discovered that "according to me" seems pretty wel...

on: silent autumn

@Virginia - I don't know about passive-aggressive, but I was...

on: silent autumn

Ignoring Virginia's witty, perceptive and constructive contr...

on: According to ME, you, him....

As Speedwell2 rightly puts it, "according to" is usually use...

on: O’clock

@Chris B - interesting. New Zealand seems to have quite a fe...

on: Tell About

I've done a little research and posted it on my blog: http:/...

on: “I’ve got” vs. “I have”

And there is also Standard Scottish English (SSE), a variant...

on: Pled versus pleaded

@Poppa Bear - OK, if you try with "bail was enlarged" you ge...

on: Pled versus pleaded

I can't count - eight hits...

on: Pled versus pleaded

@Poppa Bear - "the bail was enlarged" gets precisely seven h...

on: “I’ve got” vs. “I have”

@Fitty Stim - sorry, but Standard English is an absolutely b...

on: Misuse of “lay”

@Riley Cox - I presume you are talking about grammatical obj...

on: Shall have done?

The original questioner's assumption is correct: in normal c...

on: “enamored with” and “enamored by”

I think we need auto-linking for https addresses!...

on: “enamored with” and “enamored by”

At the British National Corpus: enamoured of 50 enamoured ...

on: Shall have done?

@Teacher Habib - In Third person singular, 'has' is used whe...

on: Plural forms of words borrowed from Latin

@jayles - re your third paragraph - absolutely. The first th...

on: LEGOs — Is the Plural form of LEGO incorrect?

@T_reason - if there was (were for subjunctive freaks) no su...

on: Plural forms of words borrowed from Latin

@jayles - I think you're making false comparisons. Obviously...

on: Plural forms of words borrowed from Latin

@jayles - for someone who thinks learning Latin and Greek is...

on: misnomer

@Aurie - And indeed the French were somewhat nonplussed at a...

on: Plural forms of words borrowed from Latin

@Brus - To be honest I'm not sure I'd even made the connecti...

on: Backward vs. Backwards?

More on that particular topic here, with particular referenc...

on: Plural forms of words borrowed from Latin

A question for Brus. When discussing language nowadays the L...

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