Grammar doubts

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Linguaphile
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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-01-13, 22:38

Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:since you're using French, why not consider an example like, "Moi, je déteste la grammaire!"

This is the emphatic pronoun, just like in English "Me, I hate grammar."

The Spanish example you gave earlier in this thread ("A mí no me gusta la gramática") is emphatic too, with "a mí" providing the emphasis. I think that's why Linguoboy suggested that you use the French example rather than the Spanish one, since you know French. They're emphatic in both languages. If you wanted to say it in a non-emphatic way you could just say "No me gusta la gramática."

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:they wouldn't claim to be superior to all other teachers

And neither have I!

This is where that misunderstanding came from - I'll address it further below:
Woods wrote:It might be concerning, but the people who took classes from me all spoke much worse English than I do and had needs that I addressed in the most careful and appropriate way, as far as I can tell and according to their feedback, so after my classes they were much better off than they would have been if they had subscribed to a regular English course.


Woods wrote:Another thought that came to mind: you are thinking from the perspective of a person living in the US...
You are assuming if someone on top of that made the effort to study English formally, they must have a lot to teach...
That class took place in Bulgaria more than fifteen years ago...

Not at all, those aren't my assumptions. You're misunderstanding me. I don't doubt that your teacher could have been unqualified. And, in the United States there are teachers who aren't good at their jobs too. I thought I'd already said that, but I'll say it again. I believe you.
My responses had to with what I thought were generalizations about all teachers in comparison to your own methods, not your comments about specific teachers you've had. (Explained further below.)

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:Or have I misunderstood you again?

It happens. I think we have different situations in mind and you're overgeneralising too much, from where we've gotten into a lot of misunderstandings.

Yes, it happens, but I'm not sure it's for the reasons you've stated. Like I explained above, I'm not making the assumptions you think I'm making and I'm not making generalizations about teachers. I misunderstood the point you were trying to make earlier, and now you're misunderstanding mine, but it seems there are some linguistic misunderstandings going on.

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:Aren't you saying they were better with you than they could have been with any regular course?

Probably if your sentence didn't include the word "any", I would have said yes.

So let's go at this from a linguistic perspective.
I deliberately changed your word "a" to the word "any" precisely to show you how I was understanding what you'd said. To me, your sentence has the same meaning with either "a" or "any". That's why I asked it that way; to find out if both sentences had the same meaning to you, too, or not. I was testing a theory that maybe what I'd understood you to mean, wasn't actually what you meant. You've just confirmed that to be true: what I understood you to be saying wasn't what you meant.

To me, the meanings of those two sentences are nearly the same. From what you've just told me, to you they are quite different.
  • Sentence 1: After my classes they were much better off than they would have been if they had enrolled in a regular English course.
  • Sentence 2: After my classes they were much better off than they would have been if they had enrolled in any regular English course.
Pedantic as it seems, I think this is actually the origin of our misunderstanding. The indefinite article "a" is used in English to refer to a single nonspecific, generic thing, not a specific one. In a context like this, "a regular course" means "a nonspecific, generic course".... basically, "any course, it doesn't matter which one"! So "a course" and "any course" refer to the same thing here, at least in my own understanding of your sentence. It just sounds more emphatic when you use "any".

Woods wrote:I can confirm that I am able to teach some things to some people better than other people can, without having ever claimed that it applies to all things or that I am better than all teachers (which would be an insanely stupid thing to think or say).

Yes. I'm glad we agree.


Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:It's good that your students improved their English and gave you positive feedback. But...

Let me just take you back for a second to where this point started - it wasn't me trying to brag about my abilities but me replying to you saying that me having taught English is concerning!

Again, not at all. You've misunderstood me. This is what I was referring to:
Woods wrote:I don't know what they think but they should reconsider their teaching methods for sure. Probably the reason I've only taken three relatively short English courses in my entire life, and I left the second one after a couple classes. So I might have missed something. But I've seen the books, because I've taught it myself.

Here you were saying that you'd taken only two English courses and part of a third, left one because you didn't like it, and might have missed something. The "they" here seems to refer to all teachers, because we were talking about textbooks in general - not any particular teacher. You were saying (or I thought you were saying) that "they" (teachers) should reconsider their teaching methods because they aren't teaching register, and they you know "they" (teachers) aren't because you've "seen the books". It was difficult to follow. All teachers should change their teaching methods? You've seen all the books? Or (sine that's impossible so we'll dismiss it) from the teachers and books you've seen in two and a half courses plus your own teaching, you've generalized that they're probably all like that. That is what I understood you to be saying, and that was what was concerning. Clearly that's not what you meant, but at the time it sure sounded like it's what you were saying. In English such generalizations like that about all others (even, or especially, when it's clear that you can't literally mean all others and have only seen a few) can sound like arrogance.

Woods wrote:At the end, didn't you mean this as "who are you to teach English, without having grown up with that language

Again, no - absolutely not. Lots of non-native English speakers are fantastic teachers of English - even here in the United States, where there is certainly no lack of native English speakers vying for the same jobs! I know many non-native speakers who are among the best language teachers I've met.
On the other hand, I was really surprised that you said you have only taken two and a half English classes. That's not something I could say of any of the other non-native (or native) English-speaking English teachers I've known.
This isn't criticism. You've obviously learned it from elsewhere else as well, not just those classes. So those two and a half classes aren't really your only language instruction in English, either. But this is not me saying "who are you to teach English to those who are less advanced than you" - this is just me genuinely surprised to read that you've taken less than three English courses.

Woods wrote:So may I have my permission to teach English from time to time back please

Totally not my place to say and I never meant to say that it was. In fact the only reason why I'm continuing with such a long post in reply now is because I think the linguistic misunderstandings are worth discussion and relevant to the original topic (grammar doubts), such as the use of "a" versus "any". That's why I'm writing this, NOT for the purposes of continuing an argument. If you want to leave it at that and move on, I'm happy to do so as well.

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby linguoboy » 2022-01-13, 23:17

Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:since you're using French, why not consider an example like, "Moi, je déteste la grammaire!"

This is the emphatic pronoun, just like in English "Me, I hate grammar."

What does that mean exactly, given that (unlike Welsh), English and French don't have a distinct set of "emphatic pronouns"? They simply have a default set of (historical object) pronouns which are used in contexts like these. (FWIW, my understanding is that most contemporary French speakers do not perceive the use of disjunctive pronouns as necessarily "emphatic". As an English speaker, I wouldn't call this use of me emphatic either. It's most likely contrastive, but that's not the same thing.)


Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:The sentence was about a morning that was spent at the addressee's house in the past as compared with the current morning at the time of speaking (if that was this other morning we spent at your place, I wouldn't be doing what I am doing right now but we would be doing what we were doing back then - something like that).

Wow, you're really confused about how deixis works in English. I can't possibly get that interpretation from the first sentence you wrote because it begins with that, not this.

I thought it was admitted to casually replace "this" with "that" in any time context.

Where did you get that idea?

Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:Sure, which is why the two forms are used interchangeably in contemporary English.

Which one is more elegant?

That's a matter of personal taste, isn't it?

Woods wrote:You mentioned something about were in that context being more American?

Yes, my understanding is that were in this context is more common in USAmerican English. I think it may still be the minority choice though.

Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:some include separate registers for vulgar language, technical language, workplace language, dialects, etc. and can divide language use up into a dozen or more different registers.

That's mixing the idea of register with the idea of different social groups talking their own argot.

Only if you define "register" very narrowly along only one axis.

When we define it for the purpose of knowing what words to use in order to convey the right attitude?

But who is defining it that way? Not Joos (from whom we get the five-level taxonomy). Moreover, what does "convey the right attitude" even mean and how is that a property of something we're calling "register"?

Woods wrote:So thou is frozen, because it's slided off the periphery of the formal register already, while whom is formal, because it's still in there?

You could say that.

Woods wrote:Is that the reason you've listed your German as three stars out of four? From someone like you I would expect that you've gotten it close to fluent.

At one time I think that was true, but I haven't been actively using German much these last several years and I can tell that I'm making mistakes I didn't use to make. I think three stars more accurately reflects my current level (even if it wouldn't necessarily take much time in a German-speaking country to bring it back up.)
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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby azhong » 2022-01-14, 1:05

Woods, back to the vey beginning, when you PMed me for the first time in March, 2021 and looked for language exchange, it was a very good beginning between two unfamiliar Unilangers. I went back reading those mails and it was helpful to me.

I am used to trying my best listening to devices ftom others and think about my words and behaviors. Now I've heard what you repetitively said in your previous posts.

If you think that it's all my fault or something that leads to the current tense relationship between us, it's your decision, your life.

I've never mentioned your advantage so far. I highly value you studying hard in UnilLang. And considering you living abroad in Finland as a foreigner, I think your life is tougher than one just staying in their home country. I also highly value your efforts on it.

I have no foes in UnilLang. All are firends, you included.

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Woods » 2022-01-14, 1:49

linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:The sentence was about a morning that was spent at the addressee's house in the past as compared with the current morning at the time of speaking (if that was this other morning we spent at your place, I wouldn't be doing what I am doing right now but we would be doing what we were doing back then - something like that).

Wow, you're really confused about how deixis works in English. I can't possibly get that interpretation from the first sentence you wrote because it begins with that, not this.

I thought it was admitted to casually replace "this" with "that" in any time context.

Where did you get that idea?

Heard "that" said instead of "this" many times?



Linguaphile wrote:I misunderstood the point you were trying to make earlier, and now you're misunderstanding mine

yeah that sounds fun :D


Linguaphile wrote:To me, your sentence has the same meaning with either "a" or "any".

That is strange. You're changing my words so that my phrase sounds like you would understand it, even though I'm saying it otherwise :hmm:


Linguaphile wrote:I was testing a theory

Yeah but negative assumptions aren't a nice thing to do to anyone. Why do you do that?


Linguaphile wrote:The "they" here seems to refer to all teachers

This "they" actually refers to those teachers who must reconsider their methods. By no means does that include all teachers. But it does include all bad teachers. It's a statement meaning that there are more bad teachers than there should be, and those bad teachers need to become good teachers. It's a general statement meaning that there are things to be improved, to the attention of everyone who is involved in teaching. Why is that not clear?


Linguaphile wrote:You've seen all the books?

I didn't put the word all there, you're changing my sentence again.


I'm wondering if other people get the same impressions from how I say things or is it just you and azhong?

linguoboy, if you're reading, would you interpret my statements like Linguaphile is or is it his thing? Because it might very possibly be that he is a quiet person who hasn't been into much conflict and my statements involving criticism bother him. I've met other people who react like that. I can't do anything about it. The way I speak has a point and the ones who do understand it understand it. So maybe it's a personality problem. Kind of why I don't hang out with my neighbour - we both have similar ideas about some things and we're kind of friends, but she's a shy personality and my outrageous extrovertedness bothers her, while her shyness annoys the hell out of me. So we smile, exchange a few nice words and almost never do anything together anymore. Simple.


Linguaphile, I cannot really go further down that rabbit hole - it takes waaaay too long to reply to your points and I think we're running in circles. Could you honestly say that you're not trying to change my personality to fit yours like azhong is? That is not going to work. It doesn't seem like constructive criticism either, because if it was, you would use a couple of sentences and point out a couple of things like linguoboy often is, and not nag at me for every other word I say. I don't even know where you find the time to write all those things but it makes no sense to me.
It really does look like you're doing your very best to misunderstand me.


Linguaphile wrote:So those two and a half classes aren't really your only language instruction in English, either.

Actually, they are. If you don't count five years of French and hanging out at this forum.

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-01-14, 2:35

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:To me, your sentence has the same meaning with either "a" or "any".

That is strange. You're changing my words so that my phrase sounds like you would understand it, even though I'm saying it otherwise :hmm:

Linguaphile wrote:I was testing a theory

Yeah but negative assumptions aren't a nice thing to do to anyone. Why do you do that?

Uff, I'm done with this. I don't think we're ever going to understand each other here. I wasn't "changing your words so that your phrase sounds like I understood it, even though you were saying otherwise"; I didn't know whether or not you were saying otherwise and so I was rephrasing it to show you what I thought you meant and then "testing my theory" by asking you if that's what you meant and waiting for your answer. I was giving you the benefit of the doubt that you didn't mean it the way I'd understood it, giving us both the opportunity to sort that out, and asking you to clarify by asking if your understanding was different (which it was, and that let me know that I'd misunderstood you). I thought that should be the end of it, because it meant that we didn't have much disagreement after all, and that we'd sorted it out to the point where we could see that was true. I thought it helped us find common ground, but clearly not, if this is your reaction. My "test" wasn't a trick, it was literally me asking you for clarification rather than simply jumping to my own conclusion.
Really, I'm done here.

Original conversation quoted below, but with emphasis added (bold) to highlight the parts under discussion:
Linguaphile wrote:I'm not making the assumptions you think I'm making and I'm not making generalizations about teachers. I misunderstood the point you were trying to make earlier, and now you're misunderstanding mine, but it seems there are some linguistic misunderstandings going on.
Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:Aren't you saying they were better with you than they could have been with any regular course?

Probably if your sentence didn't include the word "any", I would have said yes.

So let's go at this from a linguistic perspective.
I deliberately changed your word "a" to the word "any" precisely to show you how I was understanding what you'd said. To me, your sentence has the same meaning with either "a" or "any". That's why I asked it that way; to find out if both sentences had the same meaning to you, too, or not. I was testing a theory that maybe what I'd understood you to mean, wasn't actually what you meant. You've just confirmed that to be true: what I understood you to be saying wasn't what you meant.

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Woods » 2022-01-14, 10:02

Linguaphile wrote:To me, your sentence has the same meaning with either "a" or "any".

Yeah, and I think that comes to your personality not accepting mine. To me, a is different from any and that's the reason I choose one word over another.


Woods wrote:Could you honestly say that you're not trying to change my personality to fit yours like azhong is?


Linguaphile wrote:I thought that should be the end of it, because it meant that we didn't have much disagreement after all

Until next time?

But yeah, it would be good if you really thought that!

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Naava » 2022-01-14, 12:21

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:I misunderstood the point you were trying to make earlier, and now you're misunderstanding mine

yeah that sounds fun :D

It feels like this whole thread is nothing but everyone misunderstanding each other like in some Shakespearean play... :lol:

I'm wondering if other people get the same impressions from how I say things or is it just you and azhong?

I also understood your message about teachers like Linguaphile did, i.e. that you believed your English is so good and your teaching skills so great that your students were lucky to have gotten you as their teacher instead of anyone else in the world. I've read what you've wrote after that and I see now what you did mean (that you, even without formal qualifications, can be a better teacher for some students than the teacher you had, right?). However, I still have hard time seeing that in your original post - I know what you meant, but it still sounds arrogant and overconfident. That's why I think there was something about the phrasing that you would've needed to change, or maybe add some more information (like "in my country" or "the teachers I've met" or something like that) to avoid this kind of confusion.

I also don't think Linguaphile was trying to nag at you, but just demonstrate to you where she (and me) misunderstood you so that you could avoid that in future. IMO it was mostly this sentence that started it all:
-- after my classes they were much better off than they would have been if they had subscribed to a regular English course
She didn't mean to twist your words AFAIK but to explain to you that if you say "a regular course", it means the same as "any regular course". It seems to me you weren't aware of this, and that's why you in turn think she's changing the meaning of what you wrote, am I right? :hmm:

That being said, I am not sure what's going on between you and azhong. To me, your first posts were just neutral - not overtly polite, but not rude either. You have somewhat pointed style of writing that some could find provokative, but even so I didn't interpret it as insulting towards anyone. I see plenty of people writing and speaking like you do here in Finland. I do it myself sometimes too, although I try to avoid it here because I know that we don't share the same cultural background and because it's hard to convey tone in text especially in a language you're not native in.

But it's rather clear by now that azhong has interpreted your writing style differently than I did (and what you meant). azhong, did you think Woods was angry at you or rude on purpose? Based on your reaction, it seems to me you did, but this thread is full of people understanding each other's words wrong, so I don't want to make any assumptions here. :D

I have a feeling this could be a cultural difference in communication style. I don't know other cultures well enough to say if that is the case or if Woods and I see this kind of style the same way, but let me say a few words about Finnish culture - perhaps it could help us to see what's going on? This is mostly for azhong because I think we could have lots of differences between our cultures, but I'd like to know if Woods and others as well finds what I say familiar or not. (P.s. it ended up being a bit more than just "a few words". I'll put it behind a spoiler.)

► Show Spoiler


I also wish to add that stepping in like this to someone else's conversation feels awkward to me - it's not any of my business, this is between you two, and so on. I decided to share my POV in any case because I hoped an outsider's opinion could help you here and because if this was all a misunderstanding, it'd be a shame if something like that made you think ill of each other. I don't mean to criticise either of you or anything, only to tell you how I personally have seen this conversation and what I think might be going on. If I was wrong or if you feel it didn't help at all, then nevermind. :D

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby vijayjohn » 2022-01-14, 16:21

Okay, I haven't said anything so far, but this has now turned into full-blown forum drama, and I've been mentioned by name multiple times in the process, so I suppose I better.
Woods wrote:I'm wondering if other people get the same impressions from how I say things

Yes. Five thousand times yes.

You seem to want people to be 100% blunt with you. For me, at least, that is frankly impossible without violating forum rules. However, I guess I can say your posts absolutely come across as extremely arrogant, and I know for a fact I'm not the only person who hasn't said anything until now but has at least that negative of an impression. You may think it's "creepy" or whatever for me to say this about you, and I'm sure other people would disapprove of me saying it as well, but it's getting to the point where your behavior is making it impossible to help you, so I feel I have no choice but to say it.

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby linguoboy » 2022-01-14, 22:08

Woods wrote:linguoboy, if you're reading, would you interpret my statements like Linguaphile is or is it his thing?

Honestly, yes. Nobody enjoys being at the bottom of a dogpile, but you did ask, so I can only echo what others have said in this thread and say that you really are arrogant in your assessment of your own command of English. As outlined above, I'm a highly-educated native speaker of English with a linguistics background and you regularly disagree with me about how English grammar works and even about what native speakers of English actually say. So, yeah, I have no trouble at all thinking that you believe yourself a superior teacher of English to those with actual training in the field.

That said, there's also a shit-tonne of terrible English instruction out there, so I also don't have trouble believing that you've had bad teachers. But your assessment of them is a little suspish to me because, in my experience, you just don't handle contradiction well in this area.

[BTW, if you're interested in continuing the conversation we started here about speech register, the irrealis, or any other grammar topic, I propose starting a specific new thread or threads. That will sharpen the focus and also make the discussion easier to find for other learners.]
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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby azhong » 2022-01-15, 1:00

Naava wrote:azhong, did you think Woods was angry at you or rude on purpose?

To begin with, it's good that Naava joined in this discussion:
► Show Spoiler

I see Woods as a friend in UniLang, just like I see Naava, linguoboy, Linguaphile, Vijay, dEhiN, kevin, ect. Time will prove my words. This is the most important part. I tried giving Woods some advices because I see him as a friend.

An information For Naava*: Before I had my posts here, I have had a long letter to Woods in my thread "Azhong's Writing Practice" on about Jan. 1st. In that letter you'll find I listed some dialogue records related to Woods.

You may say my active suggestion is unusual or impolite or whatever, but no, I uploaded my posts here not because I thought Woods has insulted me, even nor do I want to revenge or something.

From the very beginning post when I praised Linguaphile till this one, without exception, my intention has been to remind Woods his imperfect personality.

However, I do agree some of my words were not so proper, as linguoboy and Naava have pointed out clearly.

I agree that the discussion I've initiated here has been off-topic. (Yes, it's me who deliberayely initiated this discussion, with my friendly intention as I've said repetitively.) I also agree there might include cultural differences or, more precisely, individual differences.

Now that there are more Westerner UniLangers joining to add comments, and I'm an Asian who naturally have a wider culture gap with Woods, i think I can leave this topic now.

Again, I personaly appreciate and highly value that Naava gave her comments.

*Edit, to Naava:
► Show Spoiler

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Re: Grammar doubts

Postby Woods » 2022-01-15, 10:21

Naava wrote:(...)

I didn't know that you're secretly reading in that forum, too :P


Naava wrote:I also understood your message about teachers like Linguaphile did, i.e. that you believed your English is so good and your teaching skills so great that your students were lucky to have gotten you as their teacher instead of anyone else in the world.

Noo, not at all! Strange I've given that impression - but good to know, I'll think about it.


Naava wrote:I've read what you've wrote after that and I see now what you did mean (...) However, I still have hard time seeing that in your original post

Well yeah, because it was a reply to what he said - otherwise I guess it could've been understood like that, and I wouln't write it out of this context.

Still there is one thing I do stand by in what I wrote and which I would have said in every context:

I get annoyed when people say that you cannot do something without a certain degree, and I find it very limiting. Teachers with every possible degree and horrible teaching skills - as many as you want. Excellent writers, business people and gurus of all kinds without diplomas - also exist. Why would you not be allowed to be a school teacher if you've studied for a lawyer, an actor or a doctor? What is exactly the difference? You passed your maths, you learnt your language, you went through the school of life. For me that's a pass.

When someone implies "I can do it better because I've studied for that," for me that is arrogance. And in this case I do believe Linguaphile, because I've read his other posts. But otherwise thinking that way would not make a good impression on me.


Naava wrote:I'd like to know if Woods and others as well finds what I say familiar or not. (...)

So, in Finland, there's a huge gap between people you don't know and you. You are not supposed to interact with them.

Yeah, definitely - and I hate it. I've been in all kinds of situations - including someone block my number directly because I said something while we were "not yet at the stage of talking" or someone just tell me I made them feel very uncomfortable.

Because I do talk, more than the average including in much more social countries (actually, to be honest I've never been in one where people were less social than here).

Sometimes I'm wondering how Finns make friends, and actually I've heard answers including "well, I have my friends from the uni and my friends from work and I don't quite like them but that's all I have" - and then I'm like all right, let's go out and make some more friends together and the answer is "Nah!"

Are you also that shy? (Actually, another Finnish girl told me that here the word "shy" is a little bit negative, whereas where I'm from and where I've lived before it's totally okay, some people like it and find it cute (I don't), but the point is, people who are shier are okay with it, while here it seems like they don't really want to be it, but at the same time they do - at the end I am not quite sure what is going on and what to do about it :)

I think this country is changing though. I cannot categorise Finns. What you and I are saying about Finns is true, but there are stark exceptions.

Maybe it's this lack of communication that has made it that Finns can be very different to one another. Or the long distances.


Naava wrote:Now, I think this is pretty similar in each country

Not at all.

For me there's close friend (a couple of), distant friend (we like each other but haven't had time to catch up), somewhat of a friend, and acquaintance. The idea is, I'd strive to put everyone in the first category, but it's not possible time-wise so I'll end with only a couple of people there, several in the second and hundreds in the third and last ones. But here it's a lot more hierarchical. It weirds me out that people are actually thinking about these things. I've been told literally "for me to hang out more with someone he must be worth it, and have won it, and until then I prefer to focus my time on my other friends and family".

Word by word the same as far as I can remember.

I don't know if that's totally normal in Helsinki, but my reaction to it was not only that I no longer wanted to have anything to do with this person, but getting scared the moment I realised that the time I spend with a lot of people here means nothing to them.

I don't understand why'd anyone invest time and energy into someone, if that's not a genuine and optimistic attempt to make them real friends in the future?


Naava wrote:I also wish to add that stepping in like this to someone else's conversation feels awkward to me - it's not any of my business, this is between you two, and so on.

I personally have no problem with you stepping in, and you haven't said anything bad just nice things.

I just gotta say that I never intended to be part of such a conversation and been looking for a way out if it.

It has annoyed the hell out of me - first azhong by stepping in in a way I found inappropriate, then Linguaphile by criticising me back for criticising azhong. I haven't felt one bit of bad feeling towards anyone else - not even Vijay who mentioned he thought I might find his comment harsh, I actually found it surprising but don't have any more energy to investigate.

After all, maybe I'm secretly a super arrogant person - as long as I'm not doing it on purpose and I'm trying not to be, I don't really care.

I think the only person who isn't criticised by anyone is the one never says anything. And I have zero problems with criticism - it comes down to when it is appropriate and when it isn't.

I asked vijayjohn what he thinks of me and he let me know I'm hell of an asshole. I am saying thank you. I never asked this other member for anything and he told me I'm a super inconsiderate person with the wrong opinions who had childhood problems. By the third time it happened, I told him he gave me the creeps.

Maybe people with that particular trait (azhong, vijayjohn and partly Linguaphile) really want the person they're talking to to show genuine repentance for every single time they made them feel bad, regardless of reasons. For me it's all about the reasons - if I said something that hurt you, I'd try better next time, but you have no right to ask me for excuses, I did the best I could this time. I will excuse myself when I think I should and if you ask me to, it will probably make me not want to.



Naava wrote:I also (...) think Linguaphile was trying to (...) demonstrate to you where she

Is Linguaphile a girl? I've always been under the impression that Linguaphile is a man.



linguoboy wrote:(...)

I lost the part of my reply which was about your message - I don't know what happened. So as something written for a second time, it might sound a little bit summed up:


linguoboy wrote:you regularly disagree with me about how English grammar works and even about what native speakers of English actually say

Not at all. It may have come off as disagreement, but it is discussing it further in order to learn more. I might have wanted to keep a certain feature because I've liked it, or not have liked the alternative as much - that isn't arguing, but searching for a more detailed explanation or another option. To be honest, off the top of my head I can't remember a situation where I've disagreed with you, especially about English. Maybe something general like whether it's better for spellings to be more or less etymological - I think there we had a disagreement. But I mostly learn new things from you.


linguoboy wrote:if you're interested in continuing the conversation we started here about speech register, the irrealis, or any other grammar topic, I propose starting a specific new thread or threads. That will sharpen the focus and also make the discussion easier to find for other learners.

Yup. Also some interesting things were said here which will now get lost between the endless discussion.


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