Date: Mon, 8 Dec 1997 21:47:19 EST


Subject: Re: Posts from non-professionals

Speaking of invariant BE, as Beverly Flanigan was recalling our having done a

while back...

He at least knows that invariant "be" is not applied willy-nilly but is

rule-governed, and that Black English does indeed mark tense.

[where "he" = Steve Nolden]

...I double-took (if that's the appropriate compound verb form) on the

following headline in today's New York Times (p. A18):

For Teamsters, Local Victory in Chicago Be Sign

My first thought was that even thought this doesn't appear to be a "timeless"

enough claim to warrant the use of invariant BE, it's nice that the Times is

willing to try expanding to different dialects. On second thought, though, I

suppose it's just a typo. (The first sentence of the AP story reads "A victory

in a teamsters local election here [Chicago], for the wing that supported the

former teamsters President Ron Carey, could be a sign that James P. Hoffa is

in for a battle as he seeks to succeed Mr. Carey.") Oh well.