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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.

Comments

celli
Mar. 23rd, 2003 08:05 pm (UTC)
I learned to speak English in the Midwest--specifically, South Dakota. :)

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


Either? Although I'm more likely to use "dove" in writing, and "dived" in conversation.

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


b. Antiquated Latin rules. Oy. *g*

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

Yes, but only a slight one.

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

True.

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


b, although I submit to peer pressure and use a on either coast.

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.

hee! The capitol of South Dakota is Pierre. Not Pi-erre, like the French word, but one word, peer.

Similarly, the town I was raised in, Lead, is pronounced like the thing you do that others follow (leed), not the stuff in pencils.
jennae
Mar. 23rd, 2003 10:46 pm (UTC)
Whoa....that's not somewhere I ever expected anyone to be from. I got married in Mystic, SD. :)
celli
Apr. 1st, 2003 09:46 pm (UTC)
Re:
Really?

*Small World theme plays*

That is so cool. :)
jennae
Apr. 1st, 2003 09:49 pm (UTC)
Re:
Yup! It was rather special I may say. It was in the little tiny church (no electricity) that used to be a hospital (I think, all I know is that my ex's grandpa was born in that church).

BEAUTIFUL area that is. I would love to go back. :)