Friday, September 10, 2010

favre syntax

ESPN just used the following playful phrase:

The best is Brett to come.

Language like this is hard to critiqe, but I felt his made more sense:

The Brett is best to come.

The ESPN version maintains greater fidelity to the original syntax while mine maintains greater fidelity to the original semantics.

FYI: as far as I can tell, there is no backslash on my droid keyboard options. Hence, no html. Frik!
UPDATE: I used my home computer to add italics.

4 comments:

Matt said...

Alt + space

Matthew Sullivan said...

Even one-liners need setup...

The Brett is immediately jarringly ungrammatical. Of course, after the sentence finishes, you can rethink and realize "oh that was supposed to be a joke".

The best is, on the other hand -- bang! the brain is already filling in the cliche finish yet to come... when, ha ha, BRETT TO COME springs playfully forward.

Kind of, confused/uncomfo

Chris said...

Matt, Thanks!

Mathew, interesting, a bottom up psycholinguistic parsing explanation, I love it!

Chris said...

actually, as I think about it, mathew is suggesting a top-down approach. The brain reads "the best" which significantly co-occurs with the construction "the best is yet to come" so significantly, that that constructional template is activated and then we wait to fill-in the blanks unless given data to the contrary. When we get to Brett, we managed to kludge it into our template and remain happy. hmmm, interesting....

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