[Ads-l] Trivia: _to_ vs. _for_

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Tue Nov 17 12:00:42 UTC 2015


Agree that "to" sounds better.

But maybe there's the infl. of "break it down for me."

JL

On Tue, Nov 17, 2015 at 2:03 AM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      Trivia: _to_ vs. _for_
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> For dekkids, I've noticed the annoying replacement of "to" by "for," here
> and there. I've found it difficult to find a clear, quotable example, let
> alone a citable one. Of course, I don't sit around listening for examples
> of the replacement of "to" by for. I simply notice that someone has done,
> but I can't recall the exact sentence.
>
> I've now heard this replacement in an idiom. So, I can recall it. A black
> guy on TV asks
>
> "Why don't you _run it down *for*_ me?"
>
> IME, it's been only,
>
> "... run it down *to* .,."
>
> for about the past 75 years.
>
> But, life being what it is, the earliest GB date for _to_ is only 1971:
>
> Amending Further the Peace Corps Act, Hearing Before the ... -
> https://books.google.com/books?id=3DQckxydoEfo4C
> United States. Congress. House. Foreign Affairs - 1971 - =E2=80=8ESnippet
> v=
> iew
> He _ran it down *to*_ me about how I could enhance my own image of self by
> living and working in places where people have grown into Black pride
> naturally, where Black power is the status quo, and Black action is a
> working reality.
>
> The earliest example of _for_ is younger by three
> statistically-insignificant years:
>
> Oreo - Page 140
> https://books.google.com/books?isbn=3D1555534643
> Fran Ross - 1974 - =E2=80=8EPreview
> She found the usual: ... _RUN IT DOWN *FOR*_ ME ...
>
>
> --=20
> -Wilson
> -----
> 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
>
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