"belong to be"

Patty patty at CRUZIO.COM
Fri Sep 23 02:38:29 UTC 2011

Hello Jonathan - This sounds normal to me when I put emphasis on the
syllable 'long'.  'You beLong' is the main part of the sentence, 'to be in
the penitentiary' is something that can happen to you, it is an optional

If I pronounce 'belong' like 'deserve' there isn't really as much of
emphasis on either syllable and the syntax is different.  'deserve to be'
goes with 'belong to be' and then 'in the penitentiary' comes along after
and the sentence just doesn't work.  The main verb changes - it is 'to
belong' - I think that is correct --- or is it 'to be'?



If I pronounce 'belong
----- Original Message -----
From: "Jonathan Lighter" <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
Sent: Thursday, September 22, 2011 7:05 PM
Subject: [ADS-L] "belong to be"

> The 1991 film, _Ballad of the Sad Cafe_, based on Carson McCullers' novel,
> is set in 1932 in some especially weird part of rural Georgia, or perhaps
> in
> a parallel-rural Georgia on Planet X.  Naturally, they talk funny there.
> Part of the reason that one of them does is that Vanessa Redgrave can't
> get
> her rural-Georgia accent quite right. But never mind that. At one point
> she
> tells no-good Keith Carradine, "You *belong* to be in the penitentiary!"
> He just got out. So the nuance here is "deserve to be."
> OED comes close with def. 4c: "With inf.: to be accustomed, ought; to
> seem,
> intend. _U.S. dial._"  "Ought" isn't quite strong enough here, IMHO.
> Part of why I'm posting this is because at first, "belong to be" sounded
> utterly bizarre (Like my first positive "anymore." Ah, youth!)  But within
> seconds, it seemed so familiar that I thought I'd always known it. A
> minute
> later, it seemed strange again.These were very odd reactions.
> Does Vanessa's screen usage seem *perfectly normal* to anybody here?
> JL
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
> truth."
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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