"much" vs. "a lot of"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Thu Feb 6 01:19:43 UTC 2014

On Wed, Feb 5, 2014 at 7:27 PM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>wrote:

> I'd say no; "I don't drink coffee much, maybe three days a week, but when
> I do, I drink a lot of it."


BTW, in the more-soulful varieties of BE, "much" almost always replaces a
"a lot (of)":

"I don't be drinking coffee much, but when I do be, I drinks much coffee!"
In Spike Lee's joint, Do The Right Thing, Radio Raheem noted that, in the
ongoing struggle between LOVE and HATE, "HATE be kickin' much ass!"

OTOH, Richard Pryor asserted that "God ain't never dug no whole lot of
people." I.e., God cares about only a subset of people. "God ain't never
dug people much" would mean that God doesn't care much about the full set
of people.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

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

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