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Santa Mari-a
Happy Holly Days


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Here's a story that has me wondering:

A teacher asks his students to punctuate this sentence: "Woman without her man is nothing." The men all write, "Woman, without her man, is nothing." The women all write, "Woman! Without her, man is nothing!"

Does anyone have a source for this? It sounds a little too pat for me, something that is intended to have a feminist message but doesn't quite make it. I think the men's interpretation is the more probable one.

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Si hoc comprehendere potes, gratias age magistro Latinae.

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brick
Happy Holly Days


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Judging from the gratuitous exclamation points, I'd have to say it looks pretty authentic. [Big Grin]
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Jason Threadslayer
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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I can think of one more:

Woman without, her man is nothing.

[Big Grin]

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All posts foretold by Nostradamus.

Turing test failures: 6

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dyfsunctional
I Saw Three Shipments


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Whoa, man! Without Herman, I's nothing!
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Christopher
Peruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town


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This is like a "positive thinking" thing I read once about getting a job during down-turns.

The reader is asked to separate the words this sentence: "Thejobsarenowhere."

Most people of course end up with: "The jobs are nowhere," but that's only because they're thinking negatively. It can also be: "The jobs are now here."

Big whoop. Bet that would've set things straight during the depression. Of course, the fact that when it's separating words like that, the mind tends to go for the first word-ending it can find, and "no" is a word, then nowhere, even though it's a compound, is bound to be the way most people read it.

The same is basically true of the phrase "Woman without her man is nothing." We would tend to drop the comma into the first available spot making it: "Woman, without her man, is nothing."

I hate the way people keep trying to prove philosophical, religious or political points with little word plays.

Chris "Every time you 'assume' you make an 'ass' of 'u' and 'me'" topher

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"Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know." ~ Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

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anue
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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When you read "Woman without her man is nothing", the way it is said corresponds to the meaning of "Woman, without her man, is nothing."

I honestly don't believe that all the women would say "Woman! Without her, man is nothing." It's just not the most logical choice. "Woman!" isn't even a good exclamation.

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om mani padme hum

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rosa who else
The Red and the Green Stamps


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What percentage of the women wrote this down instead: "A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle?"
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FrozenChosen
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Well, all I have to say to that is:

that that is is that that is not is not

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dyfsunctional
I Saw Three Shipments


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That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that all? That is all.

^^^That's the version from Charlie, a really rotten movie based on a really great book(Flowers for Algernon).

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Spam & Cookies-mmm
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by dyfsunctional:
That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that all? That is all.

^^^That's the version from Charlie, a really rotten movie based on a really great book(Flowers for Algernon).

James F Fixx's Solve It! ended the puzzle with "is that it" instead of "that is all".

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Did you see the Announcement?
There's a new snopes message board!

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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I'd just like to point out that "Woman! Without her, man is nothing" is two sentances, not one. I'd have used a colon, personally.

Either way, it shouldn't it be "A woman" in both cases to be gramatically correct.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Kate
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by trollface:
I'd have used a colon, personally.

Whatever turns you on, dear. [Razz]
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Danvers Carew
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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On a similar note, can anyone punctuate the following to make sense of it? It is entirely possible to make this into a reasonably coherent statement adding only punctuation, though it takes a while to get your head round. You also have to invent a little back story that makes it a conceivable statement. Give it a go:

John while Mary had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect

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Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.

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DoYourDuty
The Red and the Green Stamps


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My first post. I'm so excited (even though I've lurked for ages).

The teacher had asked John and Mary how to put "to have" in the past participle form.

John, while Mary had had, "Had," had had "Had had." "Had had," had had a better effect.

Do "Had is a funny word now - had had had." YourDuty

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Crackrzz
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Please tell the student that that that that that boy used was incorrect.

That's one my Nana told me. [Smile]

--------------------
Stand up, slip on the bathtub floor, fling a hand up to balance yourself, and happen to have your mouth open on the downswing. Voila, a new hole in your face.

-Tabby, on how she cut her lip while shaving her legs.

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fallentears
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
woman without her man is nothing
Nope. Woman - man = wo

"Wo" is something. Something is more than nothing.

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Danvers Carew
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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DoYourDuty - Bingo! you're completely correct! Isn't the English language great? Oh, and welcome to the board!

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Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Danvers Carew:
DoYourDuty - Bingo! you're completely correct!

Actually, isn't the second comma wrong?

Crackerzz, that's too easy. Please tell the student that that "that" that that boy used was incorrect.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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DoYourDuty
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
Originally posted by trollface:
Actually, isn't the second comma wrong?


You mean the one prefacing the first quotation? I think it's right, and I left one out prefacing the second quotation.

John, while Mary had had, "Had," had had, "Had had." "Had had," had had a better effect.

So maybe that's better.

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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I'd actually have gone the other way (in a linguistic exercise, you understand, I'm the king of over-using commas when I type).

John, while Mary had had "Had," had had "Had had." "Had had," had had a better effect.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Cheshire Crackrzz:
Please tell the student that that that that that boy used was incorrect.

That's one my Nana told me. [Smile]

Please tell the student that that "that" that that boy used was incorrect.

Obviously, the little bastard should have used "which" instead. --Steve

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Tabbymago
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by Cheshire Crackrzz:
Please tell the student that that that that that boy used was incorrect.

"Please tell the student that that...that...that that that boy used was incorrect!"

(To be said with disgust)

-Tabby
the princess with claws

--------------------
If you don't appreciate the irony, the irony appreciates.

"Sappiness and medieval violence: it's a wonderful combination. Like chocolate and peanut butter for the mind." -me on my fantasy novel-in-progress

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Danvers Carew
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
posted by trollface:

Actually, isn't the second comma wrong?

Yeah - It isn't necessary, but hats off to DoYourDuty for actually making sense of that unholy string of hads.

Now, we could get very silly and imagine John and Mary had had ( [Wink] ) a competition to write a coherent statement with as many "had"s strung together as possible - John comes up with the statement above with 11 "had"s in a row, while Mary manages only 10 "had"s because she decided to go with '"had" had had a better effect' rather than '"had had" had had a better effect' in the second sentence (are you keeping up?). So, writing about John and Mary's "had" competition, you can have the phenomenally silly statement

John while Mary had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had had the higher number of hads so John had won

Punctuate that! Course, you could keep going with this and keep writing statements about the previous ones, til you'd used up all the world's supplies of 'had's and everyone would resent you for it.

Danvers "well what it was was was was was incorrect" Carew.

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Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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John, while Mary had had "had had 'had,' had had 'had had.' 'had' had had," had had "had had 'had,' had had 'had had.' 'had had' had had." "had had 'had,' had had 'had had.' 'had had' had had;" "had had" had the higher number of hads so John had won

Little bit of a stretch at the end. One too many hads? It'd read better without the last quotations, and a full stop rather than the semi-colon. I'm also not sure about having a full stop in the middle of a sentance, even if the stop is in quotations. Other than that, how did I do?

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Danvers Carew
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
posted by trollface:
Other than that, how did I do?

In the words of Christopher Lee in The Wicker Man: "You did it beautifully!" Seems right on the button to me, right down to noticing the extra "had" I deliberately sneaked in there to throw people off the scent (not really - I got myself tied in a knot) - there should be 38 'had's rather than 39, but you even managed to work around the error. Nicely done.

It's perfectly okay to have full stops within quotations - it just looks more odd and confusing in this somewhat unique case.

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Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.

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Silence Dogood
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I remember reading the "that that that ..." bit in a Ripley's Believe It or Not book. Here's another one from one of Ripley's books that is probably a UL:

Someone in czarist Russia was given a prison sentence. He happened to come upon the sentence written: "Pardon impossible, to be sent to Siberia." The man stealthily erased the comma and put another one in: "Pardon, impossible to be sent to Siberia." He was freed.

Silence "like I believe that" Dogood

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Paul Unwin, Ringworm Technician
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What two words are compounded in the word "godslaughter"?
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Drag, the Spastic Colon
The Red and the Green Stamps


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"Gods" and "laughter"?
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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Silence Dogood:
Someone in czarist Russia was given a prison sentence. He happened to come upon the sentence written: "Pardon impossible, to be sent to Siberia." The man stealthily erased the comma and put another one in: "Pardon, impossible to be sent to Siberia." He was freed.

In the 4th year, or so, we had half an hour a week in English lessons, where we had to bring in a book and read it. We had to note what book we had brought in and how many pages we had read on a form that was handed out each week; think like a dentist's card, so that we gradually built up a catalogue on this one bit of paper.

Well, one book I brought in was "Buck Rogers: That Man On Beta". When I wrote it down it had miraculously changed into "Buck, rogers that man on Beta"

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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tlqeeeee
The Red and the Green Stamps


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So... do you pronounce this word "unionized" or "unionized?" [Wink]

And yes, I know it's obnoxious to post something like that, which is so dependent on verbal stresses. but hey... it's a good test of whether you're a scientifically or social-scientifically minded person. [Wink] [Big Grin] [Wink]

Oh... by the way... a woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle. [Wink]

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*Astrik*
Xboxing Day


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 -

~Mazel "Yay for Ray Troll!" Tov~

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MisterGrey
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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quote:
Originally posted by fallentears:
quote:
woman without her man is nothing
Nope. Woman - man = wo

"Wo" is something. Something is more than nothing.

Merriam Webste defines "wo" as a warrant officer. So woman, without her man, outranks a noncommissioned officer.
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Crackrzz
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by trollface:
quote:
Originally posted by Danvers Carew:
DoYourDuty - Bingo! you're completely correct!

Actually, isn't the second comma wrong?

Crackerzz, that's too easy. Please tell the student that that "that" that that boy used was incorrect.

LOL, actually I never meant for anyone to punctuate it... but, OK. [Smile]

--------------------
Stand up, slip on the bathtub floor, fling a hand up to balance yourself, and happen to have your mouth open on the downswing. Voila, a new hole in your face.

-Tabby, on how she cut her lip while shaving her legs.

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die daagliks phosdex
Monster Mashed Potatos & Grave-y


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quote:
Originally posted by Mari:
Here's a story that has me wondering:

A teacher asks his students to punctuate this sentence: "Woman without her man is nothing." The men all write, "Woman, without her man, is nothing." The women all write, "Woman! Without her, man is nothing!"

Does anyone have a source for this? It sounds a little too pat for me, something that is intended to have a feminist message but doesn't quite make it. I think the men's interpretation is the more probable one.

I recall reading where Herb Wheaton, the longtime publisher (1912-1952) of the fabled Hokah Chief gazetta in Minnesota, was oft fond of using the columns of his weekly paper to, among other things, educate his readers about the importance of careful punctuation and spelling.

A classic example I found in a history of the Chief, by title Without Stuttering, could be considered an early version of this story:
quote:

"A comma is a small mark, yet its importance is very great. Read the following sentence:

"'Woman, without her, man would be but a savage beast.'

"Remove the commas and read it again."


I hope this helps.

--------------------
"Nie lees die hoofopskrifte--lees die daagliks phosdex in plaas ..."

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die daagliks phosdex
Monster Mashed Potatos & Grave-y


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quote:
Originally posted by fallentears:
quote:
woman without her man is nothing
Nope. Woman - man = wo

"Wo" is something. Something is more than nothing.

But then again, let's not forget where the first edition (1768) of the Encyclopaedia Britannica thus defined "woman:"
quote:

"The female of man. See Homo."



--------------------
"Nie lees die hoofopskrifte--lees die daagliks phosdex in plaas ..."

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