Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Dissuade <> Persuade

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

Dissuade is the opposite of persuade.

Allah knows best.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I am a 24-year-old student.

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

A 24-year-old student? An undergraduate even? How pathetic is that!

The first sentence sounds grammatically improper but is it really wrong?

No, the sentence (as absurd as it might sound because a 24-year-old should already be working) is actually grammatically correct.

When a numerical quantity is used as an adjective, the letter 's' which accompanies the plural form of a noun is omitted.

So, a student who is 24 years old is also a 24-year-old student. A lecture which takes 3 hours to finish is a 3-hour-lecture and a pass, which grants you access for 3 days is called a 3-day-pass and not a 3 days pass.

Allah knows best.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Guinea, Ginny

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,

Guinea is pronounced with a hard g. Like that of a gun.

Ginny Weasley, from the world of Harry Potter, is pronounced with a soft g. Like a genie in a bottle.

Allah knows best.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

I didn't do nothing!

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,


Thug 1: You can't do nothing to me man! You can go to hell!
Policeman: What is it that I can't do? Nothing?
Thug 1: You heard me right! You can't do nothing to me!
Policeman: So I can do anything to you?

End observation.

Obviously Thug 1 doesn't frequent this site often. His sentence doesn't make any sense at all.

Can't do nothing? Huh? What? Let us dissect this sentence and find the true meaning behind it!

Can + not + do + nothing = Modal Verb + Negative + Verb + Negative

In this case, the not is used to indicate the negative state of the modal verb can to indicate an inability of someone or something to do something.

Do is an intransitive verb which according to means to perform or execute something. The usage of do in conjuction with nothing (do nothing) indicates that nothing is being performed or executed.

So when we combine can not + do nothing, we get =

Inability of someone or something to perform or execute nothing.

Which doesn't make sense at all. What he probably wanted to say is:

You can't do anything to me.

Which means:

Inability of someone or something to perform anything.

Aaaah, which makes more sense because maybe the policeman is powerless to do anything. Why is he powerless? Who knows, maybe the thug has political immunity like many of those working at the United Nations who park their cars anywhere they like because they don't have to pay parking tickets.

So the moral of this entry is: Instead of saying I didn't do nothing, say I didn't do anything. It makes more sense.

Allah knows best.
Disclaimer: I am neither an English native speaker nor a qualified English teacher.