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Language usage questionnaire

There have been requests for me to post more about linguistics (no, seriously; there have), so, here are my usage-questions for you. There are no right answers in usage questions; I'm just curious. And, please, in order for this to be scientific (hah), let me know what variety of English you speak (i.e., where you learned to speak English - and try to be more specific than "America" if you wish to be useful).

1. The past tense of "dive" is:
a. dived
b. dove

2. Splitting an infinitive is:
a. Wrong wrong wrong! Bad bad bad!
b. Fine, if it makes the sentence flow better.
c. What the hell does "splitting an infinitive" mean?

3. For me (i.e., you) there is a difference in pronunciation between "which" and "witch"; and between "Wales" and "whales": True or False?

4. I sometimes pronounce the word "address" with the accent on the first syllable (AD-dress): True or False?

5. Pepsi, 7-Up, Orange Crush, root beer: collectively these are all called:
a. soda
b. pop
c. Coke
d. other (write-in)

6. Just for fun: the shibboleth question: give me the name of a town/locality near you that no outsiders can pronounce right, and try to tell us how it's really pronounced. My example: Willamette, in Oregon (name of a river among other things), is pronounced with the stress on the LAM, not the WILL. Saying WILL-a-met is the sure mark of an outsider.


Mar. 23rd, 2003 06:52 pm (UTC)
my two cents
I received my education almost exclusively in New Hampshire.

1. dove
2. c
3. false
4. rarely, but i've done it a couple of times
5. soda
6. Two that come to mind are Worcester and Reading, MA. Worcester is 'wo' - as in wood, and 'stir'. But if you want to sound like a real native, it's 'wo-stah'. Reading is the past tense version of 'read', not the present.
Apr. 15th, 2003 01:49 am (UTC)
Re: my two cents
.. Is that Worcester spelled the same as in Worcester Sause? 'Cause everyone I know (i come from australia) says it 'wo-stuh-sheer' Emphasis on wo, as in wood.