Not all that

Wilson Gray hwgray at EARTHLINK.NET
Tue May 4 16:59:43 UTC 2004

Could you use something like "it's NOT all *THAT*!" or some such to
illustrate the patterns? I'm accustomed to hearing this said about
people, e.g. "she's not all that (and a bag of fries)," etc., with all
sorts of intonation patterns "_It's_ not all that" is kinda strange.
What was the context?
However, if you don't feel like delving further into this, feel free
not to reply. I won't take it amiss.

-Wilson Gray

On May 4, 2004, at 10:42 AM, Benjamin Barrett wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Benjamin Barrett <bjb5 at U.WASHINGTON.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Not all that
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------
> I'm not good at describing intonation, but there is a set intonational
> pattern with the idiom "it's not all that". Glenn's seemed clearly
> different to me.
> Benjamin Barrett
>> -----Original Message-----
>> On Behalf Of Wilson Gray
>> What do you mean by the "[sentence intonation] *typically*
>> associated with the idiom 'it's not all that'"?
>> -Wilson Gray
>> On May 4, 2004, at 2:28 AM, Benjamin Barrett wrote:
>>> This morning on the 8 AM PDT news broadcast on 710 KIRO radio in
>>> Seattle, Christopher Glenn used the expression (to be) "not
>> all that".
>>> But he used
>>> normal sentence intonation rather than that typically associated with
>>> the
>>> idiom "it's not all that".
>>> When I heard it, I couldn't make up my mind whether he was using the
>>> idiom or simply stringing English words together. I wonder if he's
>>> adopted the
>>> expression without the intonation...
>>> Benjamin Barrett
>>> Baking the World a Better Place

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