Friends of Semantic Compositions

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January 25, 2005



Heh, this is priceless.

A comment: I don't think the hip-hop s->z transformation implies that the sibilant has acquired voicing. I think the intent is to convey a sort of exuberant rebelliousness: I'm so fly, I'm writing my S's backwards!

And a story: I was walking toward my bus bay in Harvard Square Station when a bus pulled in and stopped in a distant bay. It wasn't my bus, but the guy walking behind me wanted to catch it, and I guess he felt impeded by me. He brushed past me impatiently, and as he did so he loudly growled, "Move your fuck ass!". Note, not the usual participle, just the bare stem. I suspect this was a speech error: he was hung up between "Move your fucking ass!" and "Get the fuck out of my way!", and given that he had no time to think it out, he wound up with an infelicitous compromise. But perhaps your readers can tell me otherwise.

Semantic Compositions

I'm not sure I'm going to get a comment as good as "I'm so fly, I'm writing my S's backwards!" again this year!

I suspect that the bare stem incident you mention is actually grammatical to the person who said "move your fuck ass!". In one of my favorite action comedies, Double Take, right before the climactic shootout at the end of the movie, Eddie Griffin's character shouts, "I'm gonna roll you like a Philly blunt, and smoke your bitch ass!". The person you came across might have been employing the same construction. I saw a poster once that purported to demonstrate that "fuck" (or an appropriately inflected form) could be used correctly as every part of speech in English, which is sort of replicated here (if you've read this far, you're not likely to be more offended by the link).

bladder control

The person you came across might have been employing the same construction.

Sam Nisbett

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