Date: Sun, 7 Jan 1996 10:30:00 CST


Subject: No subject given

Three things:

1. I have a dim memory, stretching to perhaps 15 years ago, of reading in Dwigh

t Bolinger's *Language: The Loaded Weapon* a very brief discussion of why it is

that harsh-sounding dialect features tend to disappear in song; why, for examp

le, a person with a heavy Irish accent when talking is nearly not recognizably

Irish when singing. The problem, of course, is that my memory is too dim to al

low me to find Bolinger's discussion, even after perusing the book for upwards

of an hour. Anyone have a clue?

2. Regarding Joan Hall's recent query, and admitting my own dialectal naivete,

of course I always thought that *old maid* was the universal English term for a

n unpopped kernel of popcorn. It certainly is in St. Louis, MO. What do the r

est of you use in its place?

3. I always thought *budge* was a negative-bias word, so that sentences like "T

he old man in the rocking chair hasn't budged all day" were grammatical while s

entences like "The old man in the rocking chair budged all day" weren't. But r

ecently the Head of my department wrote the sentence "We may have to budge on t

hat one" in describing a particularly ticklish political situation. Does "We m

ay have to budge on that one" sound as marginal to anyone else as it does to me

? Is *budge* really not a negative-bias word?