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Not A Pedant But Play One On TV

Joined: October 18, 2012  (email not validated)
Comments posted: 2
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As someone who abhors much of the recent changes (read:misuse) in the English language (myself in place of "I" or "me" in almost every context, "orientated", the misuse of the word "literally" etc), I understand your point, Brain.

However, I'd imagine the potential for the word "resume" as a noun to become used ubiquitously as a verb meaning "send one's resume" is very slight indeed, precisely because of the obvious potential for confusion as you've astutely noted. A living language will adapt and change based on what its speakers find to be necessary or expedient, (which is why the accents disappeared in the first place). Because of what would be an almost unavoidable contextual confusion in many (if not most) instances between the existing verb "resume" and a verbified version of the noun "resume" in written communication, it's hard to see how such a usage transformation would be seen as necessary or expedient. Accordingly, it seems very unlikely that we'd see such a usage metamorphosis (usamorphosis? ;) )...unless, in a sort of syntactical "natural selection", users of this new verb decided that they then wanted to resume using the accents in résumé in order to be able to use the verbified resume without confusion. I'm betting most people would stick with "email me your resume" rather than have to take up always using the accents on the noun, which it has been noted can apparently be relatively laborious, depending on one's circumstances.

Not A Pedant But Play One On TV November 3, 2012, 6:53am

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@TruthWhisperer - I caught your intentional self-referential wordplay immediately, found it quite clever, and was amazed and disappointed to find that at least one (humorless?) person managed to completely mistake your wit for what would otherwise be a ridiculously lame comment. ;)

@all others: At 37, I still find myself (from a young age to present) to be someone somewhat more concerned than the "average bear" with proper usage of grammar, syntax, context, spelling, naturally when I sort of stumbled across this thread like so many others have noted, I was at times enthralled, bemused, disgusted, etc....perhaps simultaneously. This thread represents the combined time and efforts of dozens of different people from different countries and different walks of life with differing views for different reasons....that in itself I found absolutely awesome (literally and figuratively). ;)

As for my opinion / or argument about the central word in question, I shant presume (as others in this thread have to a sometimes disconcerting disagree) to think that anyone reading some or all of this thread should be particularly swayed by any opinion or argument I might offer in favor of any of the three forms cited. I will simply say that I am a fan of George Orwell's essay "Politics and the English Language" in that Orwell argues for the preservation of certain standards and observances lest the English language devolve into a muddle of misappropriated groups of alphanumeric characters appearing to possess at least some of the characteristics typically associated with a formal language but being so poorly or lazily composed as to be irksome at best, and incomprehensible at worst. That being said, I think that this may be one of those "pick your battles" situations in which the frequency and environment in which the word in question is most often used or misused means that an evolution of simplification (regardless of the oft-argued potential for heteronymous complications) rather than preservation of what many might consider to be affected nuances of written or spoken English.

Now, I realize I have tread dangerously close to actually offering an opinion (which I said I would not do), but I hope that those who've managed to read this far into this somewhat tongue-in-cheek comment will recognize any such seeming contradiction as a tightrope act on my part that I like to think is not unlike the aforementioned comment by the ever-clever TruthWhisperer.

Ok, I'm done putting in my "deux centimes" on this thread. ;P

Here's hoping this thread will continue unabated and unabashed for another decade or two! :)

Not A Pedant But Play One On TV October 18, 2012, 5:00pm

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