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Most common way to say the full date??
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cftranslate



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 126

PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 7:46 pm    Post subject: Most common way to say the full date?? Reply with quote

I have taught my students to write on the board the date everyday like this:

Today is Monday, September 27th, 2004.

No doubts:

--I think Americans don't write the ordinal and/or they don't pronounce it???
Today is Monday, September 27, 2004.

-- Many people write 27 before September , not after???

---Americans omit "and" in the year before the last digit and say two thounsand, four??

-- Also where do the 'commas' go exactly??.


I am always talking about most common occurences rather than most 'correct'



Thanks
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metal56



Joined: 25 Mar 2003
Posts: 3032

PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 9:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Most common way to say the full date?? Reply with quote

Quote:
I am always talking about most common occurences rather than most 'correct'


An admirable approach.
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Lorikeet



Joined: 18 May 2003
Posts: 1377
Location: San Francisco, California

PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 12:13 am    Post subject: Re: Most common way to say the full date?? Reply with quote

Here is one American's opinion (if you've read things on this board a lot, you will see why I anticipate a lot of other opinions too Wink. ) I would probably write September 27, 2004, but could accept the other way of writing it. I would, however, pronounce it as "September 27th." October 1 is October first, not October one.

Writing 27 September is not "normal" American English in my opinion. Many other areas use that, however. It isn't "wrong" but I don't think it is very common here. However, we do say, "the 27th of September".

I have heard both "two thousand four" and "two thousand and four" and would hesitate to make any "rule" about it.

I've always done the commas the same way you did in your example.
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cftranslate



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 126

PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 5:52 am    Post subject: Admirable approach?? Reply with quote

Regardless of the sarcasm or lack of it of metal's comment, I keep meeting people/finding posts concerned in excess about correctness when many times 'correctness' does not coincide with what is heard on the streets, TV, etc. So that the we may be teaching students or learning ourselves completely unreal English.

Besides syntactic usage, I noticed this at an early age when my parents bought me a dictionary and many of the words that appeared in my English lessons or that I heard from native speakers were not in the dictionary or the dictionary translated them in weird ways.
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metal56



Joined: 25 Mar 2003
Posts: 3032

PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 8:15 am    Post subject: Re: Admirable approach?? Reply with quote

cftranslate wrote:
Regardless of the sarcasm or lack of it of metal's comment,


Hey, my friend, there was no sarcasm in my reply. I champion common and most frequent usage daily. It was a genuine compliment.
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revel



Joined: 06 Jan 2004
Posts: 533

PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 7:00 pm    Post subject: where the h*ll.... Reply with quote

Hey all!

Another American says:

The 4th of July, 1959.

and writes:

July 4, 1959.

and teaches:

"use the ordinal numbers when saying dates, and don't forget to stick an of in the middle there!"

And, metal, where the h*ll have you been? I've missed you (don't know if the rest have, but I have, jeje!)

peace,
revel.
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Stephen Jones



Joined: 18 May 2003
Posts: 1422

PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the "most common" is a pointless metric when you are dealing with regional variations.

The real mess comes with all number formats. There is an ISO for this, and you should write the present moment in the order YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM 2004-09-28 19:13 (I may have got the standard for the separators wrong).

The problem with this of course (which is great for sorting in order without needing a special date field, which causes all kinds of problems) is that it is unintuitive in normal circumstances, where the most important information is the actual day, which we would like to see first.

The American system of course manages to combine being unintuitive with being un-standard and illogical Smile
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cftranslate



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 126

PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2004 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So Metal56, we agree on this. I do not care much about what is considered correct. I am in favor on English created and spoken naturally without people telling you what is right.

On a different but related note. I always found funny how Nobel prizes rarely create any controversy while Academy Awards, Oscars, do.

After all Nobel Prizes are awarded by a very reduced group of people who do meet in a room, while many people ready to create controversy refer to the thousands who vote for best film of the year as if they were a similar reduced group conspiring to deny some director a the prize for one reason or another.
Conspiration or bias is more likely to occur in reduced groups and almost impossible when we talk about thousands of people.
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Stephen Jones



Joined: 18 May 2003
Posts: 1422

PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2004 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I always found funny how Nobel prizes rarely create any controversy
They create loads of controvesy; it's just it's not deemed newsworthy.
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lolwhites



Joined: 16 Jul 2003
Posts: 1321
Location: France

PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2004 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course, just because one form is the "most common" it doesn't mean it's the best form to use on every occasion.

A police officer might use his/her whistle more often than the baton or gun, but it might not be much use in the event of an armed robbery....
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cftranslate



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 126

PostPosted: Thu Sep 30, 2004 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lolwhites I do not think that your 'police' example is appropriate. Language is all about understanding people and being unsderstood and the most frequent occurences of expressions or words in a particular group are more likely to meet that goal. Nothing to do with police methods...Smile
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lolwhites



Joined: 16 Jul 2003
Posts: 1321
Location: France

PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My point is that "frequency" is of more importance to statisticians than linguists or language teachers. One does more harm than good by telling students "Form X is more frequently used than Form Y". They will just end up making the same mistakes over and over again by using more frequently used forms in contexts where they are inappropriate or simply wrong.

If, as you rightly point out, language is all about understanding people, then we don't enhance that understanding by talking about frequency. How does "Form X is more frequent than Form Y" help the students to express themselves or understand others? Better to say "Form X has one meaning and is appropriate in contexts A,B and C, form Y has another meaning and is used in Contexts D and E"
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Duncan Powrie



Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 525

PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2004 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You've raised some interesting points, lol, but a frequent form, simply because it is more frequent, is bound to be more appropriate most of the time (in general contexts) than less frequent forms (all this talk of frequency is, of course, assuming that the corpora on which any judgements about frequency are based is balanced, representative etc for whatever purposes e.g teaching general conversational English), so it is worth prioritizing in teaching over the less frequent with these general contexts in mind. If a frequent and less frequent form were both needed for the coverage of a context or "usage area" (re. technical or usage labels in dictionaries), then obviously both would need to be taught with (immediate, or only eventual?) reference to the other.

I have always assumed that students make inappropriate use of a form because they have been lacking explicit guidance about frequency or usage at all (rather than just being told, according to you, to more or less use the form all the time simply because it is frequent); their (usually bilingual and somewhat dated and "jumbled") dictionaries seem to do little more than state "Form X has one meaning and form Y another", and even if information is given regarding likely contexts, little indication is given of frequency.

Basically, frequency would seem a good way of prioritizing and ordering the mass that needs to be learned into principled levels, from "Essential to know ASAP" to "Try to learn this to cover all the bases and increase your comprehension if not your own powers of expression". It can be a useful tool, but obviously, in the wrong hands, it might soon become too blunt an instrument.
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cftranslate



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 126

PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2004 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lolwhites you don't have to tell them about frequency or make any reflection about statistics or language. You just tell them the most frequent words as a way to prioritize. Above all because in most curricula the time of exposure to the language and the opprtunities they have to use it is VERY limited.
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Duncan Powrie



Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 525

PostPosted: Sun Oct 03, 2004 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's something I wrote in another thread ("Macmillan Eglish Dictionary hamstrung?") which seems connected to what's been said in the last few posts on this here thread:

Quote:
Actually, although I bang on about frequency and attestability a lot, I am very interested in the less frequent words, because the process of attempting to define them and decide if they are useful helps me to feel surer that any selection based mainly on frequency is actually doing a reasonable job in terms of coverage (i.e. I expect items in an essential "core" to be able to substitute for any and every even remotely useful item in the current language as a whole).


To which I would add, just to make it totally clear, that if a core item couldn't reasonably substitute for a less frequent item, then I would obviously have to include the less frequent one also in my teaching, and stress its use over the more frequent one in the "unsubstitutible" context (the only "use" the more frequent item would then have in relation to such a context would be in paraphrasing/defining, outside of the linguistic context, the less frequent item's meaning within it).

Ooh, don't I just love quoting myself! Twisted Evil
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