Re: two nations divided by a common tongue

Date: Sun Jan 23 2000 - 07:56:00 MST

In a message dated 1/22/00 10:01:47 PM Central Standard Time, writes:

> By `have a problem with' I meant `strenuously object to'; Greg and
> QueenMuse read it, I think, as `are plagued by a high frequency of'. Just
> the opposite of what I meant, or at least orthoganal.
> Damien (not fluent in American)

Just shows to go you how subtle language is -- what you took as the primary
and obvious meaning of your phrase would be a secondary and very
context-driven one in American English (but would have been consistent with
the British usage, I believe).

Back when my primary clientele was British, I used to have a fairly complete
British-English usage module in my head and could switch pretty fluently
between them, although it caused some cognitive dissonance from time to time,
especially when the difference in usage pointed to a real (albeit usually
very, very subtle) cultural difference between American and British
perceptions and values.

      Greg Burch <>----<>
      Attorney ::: Vice President, Extropy Institute ::: Wilderness Guide -or-
                                           ICQ # 61112550
        "We never stop investigating. We are never satisfied that we know
        enough to get by. Every question we answer leads on to another
       question. This has become the greatest survival trick of our species."
                                          -- Desmond Morris

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