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  1. #211
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    An alternative is to develop a new name, say 'ga." Now, you have a term easily defined at the beginning that removes all.

    She asked ga to join them for dinner but he wasn't so thrilled at ga's invitation.

    When the men gathered on the commons, the presence of ga did not disturb them but should a women walk by...welll, concentration on the politics at hand evaporated.

  2. #212
    I AM too a mod! Moderator Rocket Sheep's Avatar
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    But there are no males or females... instead there are three different sexes, altho... it occurs to me that if you have to get three beings together to make a fourth it is a poor use of resources and a bit of an evolutionary blunder.

    Evolutionary blunders usually have a way of not surviving the first drought and are less believeable by sf readers who generally know a bit about evolution.

  3. #213
    Melek Kalbi TayTootje's Avatar
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    Nah, you only need two. We haven't really worked it out completely, but we work with three different dominant gens. So say a and b make a baby togheter, they get an a, because a is dominant over b, but a en c would get an c, c is dominant over a and b over c.
    Hehe, to much creative freedom maybe....

    Anyways, i just figured we use he when just talking about a person in general, but for example when we talk about a parent we use she, because then you get the idea you talk about a caring and nursing person (which in modern society is still more attributed to mothers then fathers, no offence to anybody please, I just need to come up with something here).

  4. #214
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocket Sheep
    But there are no males or females... instead there are three different sexes, altho... it occurs to me that if you have to get three beings together to make a fourth it is a poor use of resources and a bit of an evolutionary blunder.
    Ummmm! I'm gonna tell the Good Doctor what you wrote. He went to all that trouble to make them viable in The Gods Themselves.

    Yes, I know the Good Doctor is the late Good Doctor; but I'm gonna tell him anyway. I've seen the ads for Ghost Whisperer so I'm pretty sure it's possible.

  5. #215
    I AM too a mod! Moderator Rocket Sheep's Avatar
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    I didn't read the good doctor's work but I've seen it done in gaming and I knew they had to have borrowed it from somewhere. Tell the ghost of the good doctor if you must. A bit of haunting is good for fiction. How did he make it work?

    I was trying to imagine beings that cast spores out into the wind and walked around with receptors hanging out (or covered by condoms) and then I thought... how inconvenient, getting preggers when you just stepped out for a carton of milk... and then I thought I should stop there.

  6. #216
    Melek Kalbi TayTootje's Avatar
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    Sheepie said:

    I was trying to imagine beings that cast spores out into the wind and walked around with receptors hanging out (or covered by condoms) and then I thought... how inconvenient, getting preggers when you just stepped out for a carton of milk... and then I thought I should stop there.

    Lol, that is kinda what we might be doing, this friend of mine likes to go diving and such, and she came with that because of some sort of coral that does that. She told the most discusting story about eggs and seeds flying around in the water that kinda gave me doubts tho

  7. #217
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    In Another ALmanac of Words at Play, Willard Espy quotes a "Wesley Price", a person he identifies as a grammaticist, as being harsh on certain usage. For example, Price lists some "sentence openers we can do without:"
    Paradoxically
    Typically
    Ironically
    Curiously
    Surprisingly
    Furthermore
    Consequently
    Significantly
    Essentially
    Amazingly
    Hopefully
    At first, I thought that Price must have some genetic predisposition against -ly words but furthermore found its way onto his list. So, what do you folk think? Ordinarily, is it a bad idea to begin sentences with adverbs?


    BTW; Asimov's solution was male, female, and other. Other's functin was to facilitate the reproductive act, carry the "baby," and perform the parenting functions of the child once born. It made for some interesting dynamics.
    Last edited by Hereford Eye; May 17th, 2006 at 01:36 PM.

  8. #218
    Why do we say,

    "I am not finished." and "I am confused" instead of "I am not finish" and "I am confuse"? When you say, "I am" aren't you refering to present tense?

  9. #219
    I AM too a mod! Moderator Rocket Sheep's Avatar
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    Well you can't be finished until you're all done. It's not like finishing is an ongoing thing, you either are or you aren't, unless you're from Finland and then you use two Ns. Maybe you're half-finished (or half-Finnish) but still that is just looking forward to a past tense. Same with confused, which you may well be after reading that last sentence, but you were in a gradual state of confusion until you were confused. It's not like running and ran. You don't confusing until you're confused... do you?

  10. #220
    I AM too a mod! Moderator Rocket Sheep's Avatar
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    Or would you like the technical reason with big words like past participle?

  11. #221
    Master of the Universe
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    Here's one for ya:

    “Didn’t we use to smile more?”

    OR IS IT

    "Didn't we used to smile more?"

    OR

    are both incorrect?

    "..use to..." or "..used to... are sure odd, aren't they?

    They are referring to something done in the past, but the word "use" and "to" seem odd words to convey that although lots of people seem to use this phrase.

    So, someone explain this to me.

    Thanks.

  12. #222
    Master Obfuscator Dawnstorm's Avatar
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    Good one.

    Here.

    Summary:

    Correct, but formal, and possible only British English:

    "Usedn't we to smile more? (Used not we to smile more?)"

    Correct, and the most common usage:

    "Didn't we use to smile more?"

    Probably incorrect, but possibly correct in American English:

    "Didn't we used to smile more?"

  13. #223
    I AM too a mod! Moderator Rocket Sheep's Avatar
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    I would say the last example is correct. We say it like the middle example just because the d and the t run together and we're lazy and we don't really care about the words as long as the message gets thru. But it is a statement about the past so should be in past tense. The only time you'd use it would be in dialogue or internal dialogue anyway so common usage would be perfectly acceptable.

    Never ever heard anyone use the top example, it's very clumsy. Sounds like something a three year old would say.

  14. #224
    The Great Flying Bear choppy's Avatar
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    Here's one that's been bugging me with the use of quotation marks and punctuation. The context is a when using a loose-fitting descriptor term.

    Example:
    It is my understanding that Judo means the "gentle" way. When I went to a practice last night, I found it to be anything but "gentle".

    OR
    It is my understanding that Judo means the "gentle" way. When I went to a practice last night, I found it to be anything but "gentle."

    (Note placement of the period in the second sentence).

    In terms of a direct quote, the punctuation goes inside the quotation. Is the same true when quotation marks are used in the above context?

  15. #225
    Master Obfuscator Dawnstorm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by choppy
    Here's one that's been bugging me with the use of quotation marks and punctuation. The context is a when using a loose-fitting descriptor term.

    Example:
    It is my understanding that Judo means the "gentle" way. When I went to a practice last night, I found it to be anything but "gentle".

    OR
    It is my understanding that Judo means the "gentle" way. When I went to a practice last night, I found it to be anything but "gentle."

    (Note placement of the period in the second sentence).

    In terms of a direct quote, the punctuation goes inside the quotation. Is the same true when quotation marks are used in the above context?
    I've seen both versions in print. The latter seems to be more common, lately.

    Personally, I will use the former until an editor forces me to use the second one, and even then I'll try to get a say in it.

    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocket Sheep
    We say it like the middle example just because the d and the t run together and we're lazy and we don't really care about the words as long as the message gets thru. But it is a statement about the past so should be in past tense.
    Like: I didn't overslept, where "overslept" is a statement about the past so should be in the past tense.

    Actually, it's a good bit more complex, and your argument isn't completely off.

    "used to" = modal verb with no infinitive; it exists only in the past, so one could argue for "I didn't used to" on that account.

    On the other hand, one could argue, that if you use the "do"-version, you don't interpret it as a modal verb, but as a full verb - much like "dare": I dared not go there. I did not dare to go there. Therefore: I used not to go there. But: I did not use to go there. (This is still the more widely accepted version, and therefore safer.)

    It's a silly modal verb confusion that arose because (a) the modal verb "used to" has no infinitive that can be used in a "do"-construction, and (b) the technically correct "I used not to"/"used I to?" have fallen out of favour.

    There is no logically compelling argument for correctness either way. "I did not use to..." is more generally accepted; but some grammar sources don't consider "I did not used to..." incorrect.

    Choose one and stick with it.

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