Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1993 09:40:00 EST
From: "Dennis.Preston" 22709MGR[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]MSU.BITNET
Subject: some U.S. "Midland" regionalisms
I am now conducting an interview with myself after acting as a respondent to
the progressive form matters sent out to us earlier.
I admit that my harsh judgment against 'Are you wanting an appointment?' was
too hasty. Although 'Do you want an appointment?' is definitely the unmarked
for m for me (and not at all rude, as I think Rudy [no pun] suggested), I can
get "Are you wanting...?' in such cases as the following: A recpetionsist has
not seen a person sitting in an office; a person appears to want an
appointment at a place where they are not normally given; a receptionsist has
misunderstood what a person wants.
I'm glad I did this interview with myself after my initial responses, but I
still don't know whnat it means about the aspect problems raised here. Perhaps
it fits some such generalization as emotional highlighting. If past+emotion
equals present (He picked up a rock and BANG he hits up the side of the head)
then maybe present+emotion equals progress (He goes fishing there all the time
then WOW he's catching fish there like crazy). This does a little damage to
the notion that progressives are usually background elements in narrative, but
perhaps this helps explain some exceptions to that usually handy
I'm sorry not to be able resisting the remark that the new variety given the
network is 'Valley Boy' and that Professors Lance and Troike (with subtle
internal differences, of course) are prime examples.
I fear my own Ohio River Valley will never be able to make such an impact.
22709mgr[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]msu.bitnet