"like" and "as if"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Sun Aug 21 00:56:47 UTC 2005

At 10:55 AM -0700 8/20/05, Arnold M. Zwicky wrote:
>On Jun 23, 2005, at 9:13 AM, I wrote:
>>from Garry Tudeau's Doonesbury strip of 6/21/05:
>>A:  So basically you're quitting your job to go to a party.
>>B: Oh, like you've never done that?
>another instance of "ironic assertional" from Doonesbury, 8/19/05:
>A:  But, James--the lame *lyrics* of these songs! [examples
>provided]... How can you sing this stuff?
>B: What, like we grew up in the golden age of lyrics?  Ever listen to
>the words to "Horse with No Name"?

so now those pinko leftists in Doonesbury have stooped to attacking "America"!

That example like prompts me to trot out this one from my recent
airplane reading.  (Note the two polarity items licensed by the

"My sister is dead, and I want to know who killed her."
"That's a job for the police," he said pompously.
"Like they ever gave a damn," I replied.

-Linda Lael Miller (2003), Don't Look Now, p. 185

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