Thursday, July 31, 2008

Punctuate This

Proper nerdy little EFL teacher thing here.

Punctuate this sentence to turn it into a logical (if cumbersome), grammatically-correct sentence:

He said that that that that that man said was correct.

Yep, five thats.

First to get it right earns my undying admiration.

And sure I'll probably nominate you for an oul' blog award or two while I'm at it.
Even if you're not a blogger.

11 comment(s):

Rosie said...

"that! that!" he said "that said that that man was correct!"
(as he pointed emphatically at something that proved his point, and stammered with excitement)

do i win? am i the champion?

Andrew said...

Nope! But you have me a little bewildered as to what exactly you mean by your answer. as I said, it forms alogical sentence, without recourse to stammering or any such trickery.

Darren said...

I don't think it necessarily needs punctuation at all and reads fine as it stands, but if I was to give it a go I'd say:

He said that that 'that' that that man said was correct.

As in, that particular 'that' (of the many different 'that's' that exist) is the correct 'that' that the man used.

Or something!

Darren said...

I can go for six:

Did the blogger know that that 'that' that that 'that' followed was not necessary at all?

I'm trying for seven or possibly nine, but I'm not there yet.

Andrew said...

Fuck's sake, I have to be nice about your blog now Darren?
I really intended for this to at least last until the morning when normal people read blogs. Clever fucker

Anonymous said...

Anyone care to try to repeat the word 'had' TEN times??? It can be done!

MJ said...

That he said, that that man that said that, was correct.

Darren said...

@Grandad I've been working on it for the past half hour - I can't do it.

Grandad, while Andrew had had 'had', had had 'had had'...then I'm lost, unless I cheat and put an extra 'had had had' in there.

Andrew said...

MJ- Darren already got it!

darren - you're wrong, all five thats were necessary for that sentence to have that specific meaning. I like your one with six though.

Grandad - put your money where your mouth is and prove it, I really don't think that can be done.

Anonymous said...

Damnit! I have to try to remember myself now..

It was a discussion on the relative scoring of two essays:

Smith, where Jones had had "had" had "had had". "Had had" had had more approval with the examiners.

I didn't say it had to be a continuous sentence?

Anonymous said...

Ah balls I was about to post the answer - I didn't see that Darren had got it. There goes my smart buzz.