Date: Mon, 5 Jan 1998 13:59:55 -0500 From: Larry Horn Subject: Re: All-America teams Beverly Flanigan wrote, > "I vas dere, Charley"--wow, that's a real oldie, one my mother (b. > 1906) used. Note that she, a Minnesotan, always said 'vas,' not 'was,' > and the 's' was unvoiced. (She was obviously imitating a phrase she'd > heard, but where did it come from?) Actually, I only realized after reading my posted message that I had typed "was" rather than the obviously correct "vas", which my mind's ear somehow hears as an unstressed "fuss", German-style. And if anything the second-person interrogative is (or was) even more frequent: "Vas [fuss] you dere, Charley?" Larry (not a native speaker of the relevant dialect, but a native hearer of the expression)