do, v.i.

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jan 17 21:30:06 UTC 2011

>From the most well-known sage of the previous century:

Luke: All right, I'll give it a try.
Yoda: No. Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try.

The contrast with "try" indicates that this "do" refers to effective
action. Or as Jon requests "the sense is something like 'to carry out
one's intentions with effect; take effective action'"

This is natural contemporary, speech on the swamp planet Dagobah.

On Mon, Jan 17, 2011 at 9:00 AM, Jonathan Lighter
<wuxxmupp2000 at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      do, v.i.
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> At the memorial service for Richard Holbrooke last week, Pres. Clinton
> observed that "I loved the guy because he could do =97 doing in diplomacy
> saves lives."  He added, "He could do and do."
> This reminds me of the Witch in Macbeth who says, "I'll do and I'll do and
> I'll do."  But many things remind me of the Witches n Macbeth.
> The point is that that this usage, which Clinton may or may not have picked
> up from the Witches, is something I can't recall ever hearing it in natural=
> ,
> contemporary speech.  The OED entry on "do" is so daunting that I haven't
> checked adequately for its latest ex..The sense is sonething like "to carry
> out one's intentions with effect; take effective action"
> JL
> --=20
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
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