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Are You in a Subjunctive Mood?

In response to my "She Says That as If It's a Bad Thing" post (the "that" referring to calling something the "Boston Tea Party"), a commenter writes:

How can someone say, "She Says That as If It's a Bad Thing"?

In English, we say, "She says that as if it were a bad thing."

"As if" should alert the writer that a "contrary-to-fact" construction, requiring the subjunctive mood, will follow.

A few thoughts in response.

1. In English we generally (though I acknowledge not always) say "we say" to mean "we say." The commenter seems to mean by it "we should say according to the rules that I think we should follow." But looking at what we really say (for instance, by using google) reveals that English speakers use both "say that as if it is a bad thing" and "say that as if it were a bad thing" — and apparently use the former more often than the latter.

So say what you will about what we should be saying, but don't dress it up in the supposedly objective garb of what we actually say and don't say. And, yes, this is a prescription, but one with a sound semantic basis: My claim is that "we say" generally comes across to readers as a descriptive claim, and it's therefore confusing and misleading to use it when one can at most support a prescriptive claim.

2. Even if the commenter is talking about what should be said under the "rules" of the language, I'm not sure that he would be right. To begin with, the subjunctive is largely dying, as various usage dictionaries (such as Merriam-Webster's Webster's Dictionary of English Usage) attest. Even if we take a prescriptivist approach, we would have to identify some reason to think that it is still obligatory, and I don't know of such a reason. Surely even hard-core prescriptivists must accept that at some point their prescriptions stop being obligatory — or else we'd have to keep using "thou" / "thee" / "thy" for the second-person singular familiar.

3. On top of that, I'm actually deliberately not trying to make a claim about whether "[the Boston Tea Party] is a bad thing" is "contrary-to-fact." My point is precisely that this view of the Boston Tea Party may well be perceived as a sound evaluation in some places (chiefly east of the Atlantic) and as unsound in others (chiefly west). Even when the subjunctive was more common than it is now, I'm not sure that the subjunctive would have been used in such contexts. Perhaps it would have been, but again that requires evidence and not just assertion.

But in any event, if I can just get prescriptivists to carefully say "we should say" rather than "we say" (when "we should say" is what they really mean), I'd be happy.

Harry Eagar (mail):
Not 'as if.' 'Like'. American idiom is 'He says that like it's a bad thing.'

Maybe they say 'as if' in England, or maybe hoitytoity people in New York say 'as if' the way they say 'in hospital' instead of 'in a hospital' and 'flat' instead of 'apartment,' but 'like that's a bad thing' is good American.
7.20.2007 8:56pm
David Walser:
Eugene,

As a recovering English major, I love your posts on language. I well remember my astonishment at learning in my usage class that the "grammar rules" I'd learned before college were not objectively right. The study of grammar is the study of how the parts of language work together. It's descriptive, not prescriptive. Usage was a fun class, and it may have been the most useful class I took in the English Department. Your posts on language are informative and are useful reminders that our language is not fixed.
7.20.2007 9:08pm
Ron Hardin (mail) (www):
According to Thurber, the subjunctive is used for sparring for time (``Be that as it may,'' ``Far be it from me''), and for ranting and posturing (``If there be justice,'' ``Would God I were''). Trouble erupts when one of the arguers drops into the indicative and the other does not, eg. (Thurber's example) :

Husband : If George Spangell was here, I...

Wife : Well, what would you do if here were?

Ladies' and Gentlemen's Guide to Modern English Usage in _Owl in the Attic_
7.20.2007 9:12pm
CEB:
It's the "if" that bothers me. "...as though it were a bad thing" sounds much better to my ear.
7.20.2007 9:33pm
Dick Denman (mail):
Oops! "But in any event, if I can just get prescriptivists to carefully say "we should say" rather than "we say" (when "we should say" is what they really mean), I'd be happy." For shame!

Though I recognize that English is a living therefore mutable language I find that I remain a prescriptivist. I had a strict 7th grade English teacher who would never have permitted, "...to carefully say...". Split infinitives warrented rewrights of entire paragraphs. Perhaps we need to asssign some linguistic norms to "cultural literacy" in addition to correct or acceptable grammar.
7.20.2007 9:34pm
Laura S.:
Eugene,

A thoughtful post in line with your general theories on the subject.

I must admit though that the first sentence sounded harsh and was slightly confusing, and I found the second to be very clear. I literally had the experience upon reading the second sentence: "oh, that _is_ what he meant".
7.20.2007 10:11pm
Tagore Smith:
Harry Eager:
maybe hoitytoity people in New York say 'as if' the way they say 'in hospital' ... but 'like that's a bad thing' is good American.


As if!

Seriously though, I read it a bit differently, though I may be conditioned by the fact that I spend a lot of time talking (online) with a few friends who happen to be of the Oriental persuasion. "In English, we say..." implies, to me, that the listener is not a native English speaker (this is complicated by the fact that modern English doesn't distinguish the inclusive "we" from the exclusive). I know you're originally from Russia, but I've never had the impression that you weren't a native English speaker- did you move here as a young child?

The descriptive point of view has not caught on everywhere in the world, and even where it has, people who are not native speakers are often judged more strictly than native speakers. As an example:

The other night I was talking, via a PM program, with a woman in Japan with whom I've been on a familiar basis (in terms of the language we use) for some time, and I said something like "taishita mon ja nee yo" (It's not a big deal), and she started cracking up because, as she explained, that is not standard Japanese... of course, it is perfectly natural Japanese. It is just not standard ;).

I guarantee you she would not have batted an eyelid if a Japanese person on the same terms with her as I am had said it. I've caught myself doing the same thing when editing English written by Japanese, though to a lesser extent.

Of course, she also found it odd that I caught a cold, as (loose translation) "well, Japanese are very susceptible to colds, because our blood (meaning ancestry) is so pure. But I thought Westerners had such mixed blood that it protected them from small illnesses", so...
7.20.2007 10:27pm
Laura S.:
Sorry to double-post.

Even if we take a prescriptivist approach, we would have to identify some reason to think that it is still obligatory, and I don't know of such a reason.

Clarity is the reason. Although you may dispute my earlier remark as to which form is clearer.

I'm surprised as a lawyer, you don't make an exception to your general dislike of prescriptive grammar. Wouldn't we be better off if there were an effort to maintain grammatical cohesion in laws and legal writings--and, where ever possible, favoring those constructions that enhance clarity of content.

Admittedly, this would tend to make the law less accessible over time. Yet it would be foolhardy to argue that the law is accessible today without mastering a specialized vocabulary replete with opaque idioms. So the cost could be minimal.

One reason said to favor the development of the Roman legal system was the careful yet clear nuance and specificity possible within even short sentences of Latin. In particular this point is held in contrast to the ambiguities of Greek grammar that hindered the clarity of written laws.
7.20.2007 10:30pm
Eugene Volokh (www):
Dick Dennan: I understand that you're a prescriptivist; but even assuming prescriptivism is correct, why should it mean that split infinitives show lack of "cultural literacy"? Have you by any chance looked into what the official authorities say about split infinitives?

Laura S.: I'm in favor of clarity, but I'm pretty sure that there was nothing remotely unclear about the phrase to which the commenter was objecting.

I'm also in favor of grammatical cohesion, in the sense of following the rules of grammar -- which is to say the rules of the language as it is written and spoken. (If I'd written "which is say to rules of language as him is write and spoke," that would be both jarring and time-consuming to properly parse, precisely because it departs from the actual grammar of the language.) The question is whether the subjunctive is still part of the obligatory rules of English grammar, and, even if it is, whether those rules require the subjunctive for clarity in the particular context in which I wrote "as if it's a bad thing."
7.20.2007 10:59pm
Lev:
I should say that I would be much happier, grammatologically speaking, if it were to come to pass that in sentences beginning "There is " or "There's ", what followed were singular and not plural.
7.20.2007 11:04pm
LM (mail):

But in any event, if I can just get prescriptivists to carefully say "we should say" rather than "we say" (when "we should say" is what they really mean), I'd be happy.

I think I disagree. To my ear "we say" connotes (sometimes teasing) condescension absent in "we should say."

As for splitting the infinitive, that's one construction up with which I will not put. (Yes, it's old, but I still like it.)
7.20.2007 11:05pm
Eugene Volokh (www):
LM: (1) "We say" at the very least can reasonably be interpreted as an assertion about what people actually say. It is therefore at best ambiguous and usually misleading, because it suggests that the claim being made is factual and uncontroversial, rather than normative and controversial.

(2) Maybe I'm not getting the joke, but what does the no-splitting-infinitive "rule" have to do with the no-preposition-at-the-end-of-sentences "rule" (except that they are both largely spurious)?
7.20.2007 11:21pm
Tagore Smith:
Eugene Volokh:
The question is whether the subjunctive is still part of the obligatory rules of English grammar, and, even if it is, whether those rules require the subjunctive for clarity in the particular context in which I wrote "as if it's a bad thing."


I think it makes things clearer to acknowledge that there are different registers in English (and of course in other languages), and that some are artificial enough that the descriptive rules are hard to distinguish from the prescriptive.

I believe the subjunctive is still mandatory _in some cases_, _in some registers_, even in American English. I don't think that this has anything to do with clarity (when it comes to serial commas in similar registers the last one _is_ obligatory, I think- this is a matter of the intersection of clarity and consistency).

Your usage seems entirely correct to me, in the register you were writing (or leding, not entirely the same thing) in. I dislike prescriptivist niggles, and was tempted to address the comment in question when I first saw it, but... I actually thought it was from a commenter who knew about your past posts on the subject and was either poking a bit of fun at you or trying to get a rise out of you...
7.20.2007 11:52pm
Eugene Volokh (www):
Tagore Smith: I appreciate your point, and I agree that the rules differ from context to context.

But is the subjunctive "if it were" in fact -- which is to say as a matter of actual practice -- obligatory even in relatively formal writing (and you and I agree this blog isn't supposed to be relatively formal writing)?

And even if it is obligatory in some situations, is it obligatory in the context in which I was using it, which did not involve a judgment on my part that the supposition was indeed "contrary-to-fact"?
7.21.2007 12:27am
Lev:

But is the subjunctive "if it were" in fact -- which is to say as a matter of actual practice -- obligatory even in relatively formal writing


Perhaps the question is: If "if it was" were, strictly speaking, used improperly in relatively formal writing, how many of the readers would recognize the the impropriety?
7.21.2007 12:41am
Randy R. (mail):
Question: Is this the subjunctive?

"She is quite pretty, if not beautiful."

If not, what it is it. To me, this is the most confusing construction in the English language. It can mean two completely opposite sentiments. Either, she is pretty, but not up to the level of beautiful, or it can mean she is pretty, and might possibly reach the level of beautiful.

I find that the accurate comprehension of this type of construction is very difficult, if not impossible.
7.21.2007 12:45am
LM (mail):

LM: (1) "We say" at the very least can reasonably be interpreted as an assertion about what people actually say. It is therefore at best ambiguous and usually misleading, because it suggests that the claim being made is factual and uncontroversial, rather than normative and controversial.


I agree, but when it's preceded by "In English," I think it's pretty clear that the intended meaning is, "those of us who speak English properly say." Which would make it both factual and normative, and, at least in this instance, unambiguous. Maybe I'm missing something, but what other "we" could be intended?

(2) Maybe I'm not getting the joke, but what does the no-splitting-infinitive "rule" have to do with the no-preposition-at-the-end-of-sentences "rule" (except that they are both largely spurious)?

It's also possible that you do get it, but it's just not that funny. Anyway, it's an ironic way of saying I have no problem with split infinitives. The utter ridiculousness of "[a] construction up with which I will not put" is meant to illustrate how rigid fidelity to the rules can make for very poor communication.

And only for you, Eugene, do I thus break one of the cardinal rules of comedy, i.e., that you never explain a joke, funny or otherwise. But then rule breaking does seem to be the order of the day.
7.21.2007 2:02am
Tagore Smith:

Tagore Smith: I appreciate your point, and I agree that the rules differ from context to context.

But is the subjunctive "if it were" in fact -- which is to say as a matter of actual practice -- obligatory even in relatively formal writing (and you and I agree this blog isn't supposed to be relatively formal writing)?

And even if it is obligatory in some situations, is it obligatory in the context in which I was using it, which did not involve a judgment on my part that the supposition was indeed "contrary-to-fact"?


First, as I said in an earlier post, I can find nothing to criticize in your lede. You might have written "If it were.." if you were as given to pompous jackassery as I am. That you are not is to your credit. Were you so, it would, clearly, not be to your credit. But why consider the contrafactual?

I think it is important to note that most who invoke the subjunctive have the form in mind, and not the mood. You are correct when you note, obliquely, that the form is what is criticized here.

Your usage is as unobjectionable as Mom and apple pie, were they unobjectionable. That is why I didn't correct your commenter- had he been serious, he would have been an idiot. I would hesitate to call him that, in fact. I am quite willing to call him that in a contrafactual sense, or as they say, a subjunctive mood.

I do still use the subjunctive, as a mood (and, much more often, as a form- I'll say "if he was xxx" after I am killed for it, and not before), so I do hope that it doesn't become incomprehensible before I die. But, were I the last man on earth, I would still use it.

So, if some commenter were to provoke you into dedicating an entire post to responding to a comment well tailored to provoke you... what would that thread look like? Should that be the case (a pure hypothetical)...

The meaning isn't going away. Languages don't impoverish themselves. They become richer over time, and abandon constructions that have failed to prove their worth. I'll miss the formal language I was brought up on, but... the subjunctive mood will survive, even if the form doesn't.
7.21.2007 4:03am
Jeremy Pierce (mail) (www):
My understanding is that "as if it was" in counterfactual contexts should be a subjunctive according to traditional prescriptive grammar. But I've never even heard of the present tense "as if it is" supposedly requiring a subjective instead.
7.21.2007 9:31am
David Chesler (mail) (www):
Someone told me that what I call the subjunctive is really the conditional, and now I'm confused.

"We say" is (in at least some circumstances) a perfectly good idiom for prescriptions, especially those that are stronger than "should". (Should can merely indicate that if the rule is not followed, an exception is thrown. "I should have my oil changed every three thousand miles, but I'll take the chances that I won't kill the engine by waiting longer" versus "Children! This is a nice restaurant. We don't misbehave here.")

I also would have thought it should be "She says it as though it were a bad thing" but that might be the gradations, where though/were implies contrary to fact and the one allowing that it might actually be consistent with fact is "as if it is".

I learned gradations: "If it were the case" (implies that it is not the case), "It it be the case" (so you say, I don't know), "If it is the case" (maybe the cat is dead, maybe it isn't, we'll find out when we open the box [this of course implies that the state of the cat is fixed before we've opened the box]). (<-- Math/CS usage -- I don't like the [typesetter's?] rule about putting the period inside the parenthesis.)

I worked at a college radio station that had refused to use a preposition where a conjunction was required in the Winston cigarette ads ("Winston tastes good as a cigarette should".)

"Would you know where I could get schrod around here?"
7.21.2007 10:32am
Bruce Hayden (mail) (www):
I find this a bit more interesting than whether Congress will or won't be able to impeach the President and Vice President for ordering Harriet Myers to not testify.

I am another who will be using the subjunctive to his dying day. I am a prescriptivist because my parents were, and at least my mother was, because her parents had been. So, it is probably not surprising that I am teaching another generation to be prescriptive.

I will admit though that my prescriptive analysis of the subjunctive is usually limited to "if /pronoun/ was". That rings bells in my head, causing me to subconsciously correct the writer or speaker.

Finally, I note that the prescriptive grammar, including the use of the subjunctive, is still being taught, at least by the high school English teachers at one prep school here in Colorado. That should not be surprising though, since many of the parents of the students there share this malady.
7.21.2007 11:36am
Fub:
Tagore Smith wrote at 7.21.2007 3:03am:
Your usage is as unobjectionable as Mom and apple pie, were they unobjectionable. That is why I didn't correct your commenter- had he been serious, he would have been an idiot. I would hesitate to call him that, in fact. I am quite willing to call him that in a contrafactual sense, or as they say, a subjunctive mood.
Exactly!

The phrase "In English, we say ..." fairly drips mock snark. Snark by the tone of a native condescendingly correcting an inarticulate foreigner. Mock by the fact that the inarticulate foreigner is neither, and the commenter obviously knows that.
So, if some commenter were to provoke you into dedicating an entire post to responding to a comment well tailored to provoke you... what would that thread look like? Should that be the case (a pure hypothetical)...
I'll credit the commenter with executing one of the better trolls I've seen in quite a while. Extra points for using crass brass to disguise subtle targeting: the perennial descriptivist-prescriptivist war's partisans. Overall very effective.
7.21.2007 12:16pm
Fub:
David Chesler wrote at 7.21.2007 9:32am:
"Would you know where I could get schrod around here?"
Scollay Square.
7.21.2007 12:37pm
Warmongering Lunatic (mail):
One might argue with an orthodox Roman Catholic on a point of Catholic theology by quoting a conference of Episcopalian bishops. However, the Catholic would rightly point out that bishops who reject Catholicism cannot be considered authorities on Catholic theology—regardless of the correctness of Catholicism.

Similarly, one might argue with a grammar prescriptivist by pointing to the descriptivist-written Merriam-Webster's Webster's Dictionary of English Usage. However, the prescriptivist would rightly point out that a book that rejects prescriptivism cannot be considered an authority for purposes of grammatical prescriptivism—regardless of the correctness prescriptivism.
7.21.2007 12:58pm
deweber (mail):
What is seldom mentioned in the prescriptivist vs descriptivist debase is that while grammatical choices may be flexible they are indicitive of social position. Cockney English is still English and mostly comprehensible by native speakers. But its use marks one and brings with it many assumptions and prejudices about the speaker. When your second grade teacher forced you to use "good" grammar, it was not completely because it is "right". While that may have been her motivation, the wisdom of it was that you will be seen differently based on the grammar you use. Using the subjunctive, at least on contrary to fact situations, marks one as more educated or at least more snobbish. Talking in the "hood", this choice may not be right or wise. Talking in the faculty club at Harvard, it may be a better choice.
7.21.2007 1:51pm
jimbino (mail):
Fub got it right: The phrase "In English, we say ..." fairly drips mock snark. And deweber restates the sentiments expressed well in My Fair Lady. ("It's her AAOOUU that puts here in her place, not her wretched clothes and dirty face.")

Yes, I have been paid to teach English to foreigners. I have often had to correct them by explaining, "In English, we say …." What EV wrote may have followed the grammar rules of Japanese, Chinese or Hebrew, as far a I know, but any student of Greek, Latin, Russian, German, Spanish, Italian, French and Portuguese would know better. His usage fairly indicates ignorance of the rules of grammar of almost all Indo-European languages. EV informs me that he has mastered programming, a skill that clearly sets him apart from 99% of lawyers, including those of SCOTUS, who are largely ignorant of math and science. I don't like living in a country whose leaders in all three branches are so ignorant of math and science.

But when lawyers who pride themselves on their wordsmithing show ignorance of simple, straightforward language rules—that's too much to take. EV has the right to express himself any way he pleases, of course, and even to derive all his inspiration from Webster's Dictionary of English Usage. But I sit here, a language maven with a stack of style manuals on my desk, paid to edit medical and technical literature and to coach students in taking the SAT.

So I can't help noticing abuses of the subjunctive. I used to just vomit all over the keyboard when reading, "amount of data," "every pregnant woman needs to have their blood pressure monitored," and so on, ad nauseam. Now, I just object vociferously.

I too had a mother who was a language professor, and it was due largely to her early influence that I have come to travel widely and master several languages. Among the points she often made to me were these: if you use proper English, people of all classes will understand you, and the erudite will love you for it; if you are a Mark Twain, you can pull off speaking as a Huck or Jim.

You can even hear good advice on the radio: "People judge you by the words you use." We all know what EV meant to say, but the erudite among us (usually more silently) judge him a challenged speaker of English who writes as if he had never studied, let alone mastered, another language.
7.21.2007 3:17pm
Harry Eagar (mail):
There's no such thing as Indo-European grammar rules.

There's no such thing as a prescriptivist, either.

Give me a running text of the speech or writing of anybody, and I'll point out all the violations of prescription. They're called idiom.

It isn't supposed to be consistent.
7.21.2007 3:58pm
jimbino (mail):
Harry Eagar for Chief Justice!
7.21.2007 4:07pm
ReaderY:
Though the hammer of change pound against it, the subjunctive mood is not dead yet. And until it be dead, there are those who love it, who require that it be used, that our language be enriched. Were it not so, we would be the poorer.
7.21.2007 11:33pm
AlanDownunder (mail):
"I learned gradations: "If it were the case" (implies that it is not the case), "It it be the case" (so you say, I don't know), "If it is the case" (maybe the cat is dead, maybe it isn't, we'll find out when we open the box [this of course implies that the state of the cat is fixed before we've opened the box])."

Without being prescriptive, one can rue declines in subtlety of expression - especially when comprehension of subtleties is in slower decline than exploitation of subtleties.

One can also rue the tautology of "if it were the case" when "were it the case" is available, and briefer.
7.22.2007 2:45am
Daryl Herbert (www):
There he goes again: Eugene rails against prescriptivism, and in the process prescribes new rules to prescriptivists, who were only using language as they felt most natural.

Has he ever criticized a prescriptivist without telling him how he should behave?
7.22.2007 1:25pm
markm (mail):
jimbino: Did you not read where Eugene said, "I'm actually deliberately not trying to make a claim about whether '[the Boston Tea Party] is a bad thing' is 'contrary-to-fact.'" Or do you prefer sounding upper-class to saying what you really mean?

This is why I am not a prescriptivist - so often they are not only snobbish, but just plain wrong. I will strongly criticize anything that makes language less clear and comprehensible, but many prescriptivists obviously care nothing about that. Two examples are the rules against splitting infinitives and ending a sentence with a preposition. These are rules adopted from a foreign language that force English sentences into a tortured form.
7.22.2007 4:08pm
Randy R. (mail):
Reminds of a time when Winston Churchill got a memo from an underling. Now I can't remember if the memo ended with a sentence with a preposition, or the sentence was contorted to avoid it.

Whatever. Churchill wrote in the margins: "Ending a sentence with a preposition is not something with which I will put up."

Those 'rules' came from Latin, and a time when classisists ruled at Oxbridge, and declared that the greatest language ever was Latin, and that English should do it's best to emulate it.
7.22.2007 4:37pm
koanin (mail) (www):
Yes, I am!!! and?
The subjunctive "if it were" in fact -- which is to say as a matter of actual practice -- obligatory even in relatively formal writing (and you and I agree this blog isn't supposed to be relatively formal writing)?
7.22.2007 4:45pm
jimbino (mail):
Markm, Randy and Koanin simply suffer from tin ear syndrome. Any person who has actually paid attention to 7th-grade grammar or even listened to Ronald Reagan, a master of spoken English for all his lack of higher education, could hear the error in "If I was president, I would..." or in "I acted as if marital fidelity was a bad thing." Indeed, if EV was referring to the writer's reference to the historical Boston Tea Party, the proper construction using the subjunctive mood is "She speaks of the Boston Tea Party as if it had been a bad thing."

Y'all aren't going train your ears if you keep depending on television and GTA for your grammar and vocabulary. It seems that only George Will and Christopher Hitchens among thousands of commentators have the sense to say "yes" instead of "absolutely" when answering a question in the affirmative, for example. And they seem to be among the few who do not lapse into the solecism "The problem is is that ...." Now that I have pointed out these infelicities, your ears may actually begin to hear what your fellow humans are saying. But, if they don't, no worries: pigs, while equally indiscriminating, can still answer to their master's voice.
7.22.2007 5:38pm
Toby:
Actually, Winston was criticized by an editor for ending with an preposition, and mockingly replied "This is something up with which we shall not put!"
7.22.2007 7:09pm
Matt S. (mail) (www):
I don't see how "In English we should" is so great. Even if it's normative, it's still wrong by your points 2 and 3.

But more importantly,
this guy passed up a perfectly good opportunity to use the subjunctive in a sentence discussing the subjunctive--
a true grammarian wouldn't be able to help himself.
7.23.2007 3:11am
A.C.:
1. "She says that as if it's a bad thing." I have no trouble with this as a neutral comment on the way another person ("she") says something.

2. "She says that as if it were a bad thing." This is also fine, but subtly different because it carries a strong implication that the speaker disagrees with the person being spoken about.

3. "She says that as if it was a bad thing." People do say this, but anyone who writes it should expect an editor to change it to either #1 or #2.

I think the confusion comes in because "as if" implies some disagreement with the person being spoken about. I'm not sure that implication is strong enough to REQUIRE "were," though. Using "were" certainly reinforces the disagreement, but I thing #1 is appropriate when the speaker doesn't want that kind of reinforcement.
7.23.2007 12:12pm
Tagore Smith:
Well, I must thank Fub for editing me such that I could be understood. Thanks, Fub ;). I have no idea why Fub chose to make me comprehensible but... if I could pay him to follow me around I'd make Friedman a piker.

Anyway, lately I've been translating Japanese TV to English...
make of that what you will.
7.24.2007 5:00am