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Language Questions / ---- all with uniform septa
« Last post by t k on Today at 02:16:10 am »
The office was crowded, Rachel figured, because it takes four months for a nose job to heal. Four months from now would be June; this meant many pretty Jewish girls who felt they would be perfectly marriageable were it not for an ugly nose could now go husband-hunting at the various resorts all with uniform septa.  (from V. by Thomas Pynchon; a larger context is here; use ctrl-f to locate the sentence)

Please explain all with uniform septa.  Thanks.  --- tk
Language Questions / Re: through/because of
« Last post by Mr Tasker on December 11, 2017, 10:48:48 pm »

1) and 2) are certainly possible, but in my view not very good English.

I would prefer "because of" in both cases.

3) is comical because the first sentence implies that the police or lawyers are stupid but somehow they solved the case anyway. It's not until you read the second sentence that things are cleared up.

The problem I have with this use of "solved through" is that it implies a process or method, and the criminal is not the one doing the solving.

So when I reach the end of  "Most times, a criminal case is solved through ..."  I'm expecting to read next what someone working on the case (police, prosecutor) did to solve it rather than what the criminal did wrong.

Therefore, natural endings might be.
Most times, a criminal case is solved through hard work and patience by the police
Most times, a criminal case is solved through diligent forensic work
Most times, a criminal case is solved through the meticulous accumulation of evidence.
Sometimes, a criminal case is solved through an inspired guess by the detective.
Language Questions / through/because of
« Last post by navi on December 11, 2017, 10:25:48 pm »
Which are correct:

1) Most times, a criminal case is solved through a mistake made by the criminals.

2) Sometimes, a criminal case is solved through the sheer stupidity of the criminals.

3) Sometimes, a criminal case is solved through sheer stupidity. Once the guy who had committed the perfect crime bragged about it to an undercover agent.

Café / Re: Meanwhile, in the jungle...
« Last post by Mr Tasker on December 11, 2017, 08:26:16 pm »
Café / Meanwhile, in the jungle...
« Last post by admin on December 11, 2017, 06:06:08 pm »
Two cannibal headhunters, Mbungi and Umpopo, meet one day in a sylvan
glade of the primeval jungle. Noting that his friend Mbungi was looking a
little drawn and peaked (indeed, doubled over in pain), Umpopo expressed
curiosity and concern:

"Mbungi, my friend, what is the matter?"

"Ohhh... I have great pain dwelling in my gut, Umpopo," replied Mbungi,
clasping his midsection as an agonizing spasm of anguish ripped through
him."It has been like this ever since just after supper last night. I
don't know how much more I can take."

"That is truly unfortunate, my friend," said Umpopo. "After supper, you might be something you ate. Tellme, Mbungi, did you have
anything special or unusual for supper yesterday?"

"Ow! Ow! Oh no, nothing special. Just the usual: missionary," at which
point Mbungi fell to the ground, writhing in torment.

"Bear with me," said Umpopo, furrowing his brow. "What kind of
missionary?Think carefully: it might be important."

"Franciscan, I think. Why?"

"Oh Mbungi, I think I know what the matter is! Quick: how did you prepare

"Boiled, of course. You know that I'm basically unadventurous in the
kitchen, Umpopo. Some of those missionaries can be pretty tough, and
nothing but boiling them for a good, long time will make them sufficiently
tender for the table."

"Oh poor Mbungi! Didn't you know?"

"Know what?"

"You poor fool, everyone knows that FRANCISCANS ARE FRYERS!!!"

Well, Umpopo got his ailing friend as quickly as possible to the jungle
clinic of Dr. Albert Schweitzer, who was found transcribing Buxtehude
cantatas for the organ. Upon examination the good Swiss doctor realised
that Mbungi was suffering from a simple intestinal bacterial infection,
and would only need a short course of antibiotics.

The problem was, of course, that antibiotics must be taken regularly over
a period of day to be effective, and Mbungi, like most of his tribe in that
sweltering, muggy jungle climate, had neither pockets nor clothing to
carry the pill supply about with him. Luckily, Doctor Al had had lots of
experience with this vicissitude of jungle life: he ground up two dozen
pills, mixed them with just enough water to form a thick paste, and soaked
it into a 24-inch leather thong, which he tied around the suffering
Mbungi's wrist.

"Mein Freund," he explained to his primitive patient, "listen to my
directions well, for you must follow zem EXACTLY to cure zis malady: every
zunrise, and every zunset, wizzout fail, you must cut off a piece of zis
thong vun inch long - zat's ze length of ze last joint of your thumb - und
chew it thoroughly, und svallow it. If you do zis faithfully, ven you
reachze end of your rope (zo to speak) ze disease vill haff gone."

"Oh thank you, thank you Doctor," bubbled the grateful Mbungi. "I will be
forever in your debt for this strong juju."

Ah, but less than a fortnight later, Mbungi was back in the clinic in
throes of agony, carried by the faithful Umpopo, who dropped him on the
examining table before the compassionate doctor.

"Mbungi, what's the matter?"

"Oh Doctor, My stomach is MUCH worse. Owowowowowow!!!"

"I dont inderstand zis; it vas a zimple bacterial G.I. infection. Did you
do as I instructed? Did you chew and zwallow a thumblength of ze thong
eachand every zunup and each and every zundown?"

"Owowowowow! Yes Doctor, I did."

"And you kept zis up until it vas all gone?"

"Owowowow! Oh yes indeed, Daktar! THE THONG IS ENDED, BUT THE MALADY LINGERS ON."
Language Questions / Re: around/about
« Last post by admin on December 11, 2017, 12:03:09 pm »
I agree.

1. I walked round the town = I circumnavigated it.
2. I walked around the town = I wandered about in the town.
Café / Re: height
« Last post by Bertha on December 11, 2017, 11:32:42 am »
I haven't heard "heighth" before, but there is a reporter on one of our local tv stations that has pronunciation issues from time to time.  I can't think of an example, but it's often.  And then there are the spelling/usage errors that appear in the crawl line at the bottom of the screen.  I swear that the person responsible for those can't spell! 
Language Questions / Re: around/about
« Last post by Mr Tasker on December 11, 2017, 08:24:25 am »

Yes, all are correct.

The last three with "in" obviously mean inside the house.

The first three, context would make it clear: magazines would be inside, leaves would usually be outside, but you might use one of the last three to emphasize that the leaves had got inside (say you'd left the doors open on a hot windy day).

OK, but you want to know what's implied, so without context for the sentences my feeling is as follows:

1) means inside
2) ambiguous
3) outside

Although "round" is a short form of "around" and so theoretically they are synonyms, my impression is that "round" has a slight feeling of "surrounding" rather than "about the place"/"no particular place".

Not sure if this is just me though.

Language Questions / around/about
« Last post by navi on December 11, 2017, 04:19:23 am »
Are these sentences correct:

1) They were scattered about the house.
2) They were scattered around the house.
3) They were scattered round the house.

4) They were scattered about in the house.
5) They were scattered around in the house.
6) They were scattered round in the house.

In which cases:
a) They are inside the house
and in which cases:
b) They are outside the house
and in which cases:
c) One cannot tell.

Café / Re: Sweden Moves to the Right
« Last post by t k on December 11, 2017, 03:05:34 am »
Oh, and one other thing: I wanted to say how hurt and disappointed I was earlier that *some* people cast doubt on the veracity of my post.

My apologies, Mr Tasker.  I am so used to read the posts in Café imagining tongues in cheeks.  --- tk
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