End of ADS-L Digest - 3 Nov 1997 to 4 Nov 1997 ********************************************** 06 Nov 1997 00:00:14 -0500 eply-to: American Dialect Society Message-id: <0EJ700NAXKMQ8S[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]ACS2.BYU.EDU> Status: U X-Mozilla-Status: 8001 There are 22 messages totalling 530 lines in this issue. Topics of the day: 1. "so do me something" - Reply to Beth Simon's Inquiry (3) 2. "so do me something" 3. /gIt/ v. /gEt/ for "from the git-go" 4. reflexives 5. /gIt/ vs. /gEt/ 6. "it's all good" (2) 7. "git-go and southernisms" 8. Garbage In, Garbage Out (fwd) 9. Guys and Dolls author (2) 10. RE>Garbage In, Garbage Out (fwd) (2) 11. Copyediting query (2) 12. 13. Nominations for Words of the Year (2) 14. Bee's Knees 15. Indian giver ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 4 Nov 1997 23:29:26 -0600 From: Samuel Jones Subject: Re: "so do me something" - Reply to Beth Simon's Inquiry >Is anyone familiar with the phrase, "So do me something" used >as a retort? Know anything about the origin? > >thanks, >beth simon >assistant professor, linguistics and english >indiana university purdue university >simon[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]cvax.ipfw.indiana.edu ______________________________________________________ Nu (a Russian word meaning "well"), so I'll tell you . . . The form of the expression "So do me something" is fundamentally German; however, Hochdeutsch (High German) would never employ such expressions as "Tu mir etwas" or "Also,tu mir etwas" or "Denn, tu mir 'was," because these expressions mean "Do something TO me" and not "FOR me." The equivalent of "So, do me something" in Modern High German would be "Also, [bitte] tu etwas fuer mich [bitte]." Yiddish employs primarily German as its basis, plus a "bissel" Russian, Hebrew, and, so who knows what else? Such a Mischung! (The Yiddish word "mish," meaning "mixture" or "mix," is also derived from German.) I. too, suspect that the English is a sort of translation from some not-too kosher German? It is quite possible and plausible that Ms. Simon's inquired-about expression is indeed derived out of German and comes to English via Yiddish, as is seen in a number of responses to her inquiry. Still, we have a bunch of expressions, like "So, tell me something." "So, do me a favor?" "So, sing me a couple more verses." "So., give me a little more time." "So, how's by you?" "So, give me another helping cheesecake?" "So, you didn't like my challah?" So, Simon, say maybe I'm a schlump, but don't sue me IF my shtik is shrecklich! _______________________________ DR. SAMUEL M. JONES Professor Emertitus Music & Latin American Studies University of Wisconsin-Madison "Pen-y-Bryn" - 122 Shepard Terrace Madison, WI 53705-3614 USA _______________________________ EMAIL: smjones1[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]facstaff.wisc.edu _______________________________ TELEPHONE: 608 + 233-2150 _______________________________