[Ads-l] more impossible

dave at WILTON.NET dave at WILTON.NET
Sat Dec 12 13:11:27 UTC 2020

It's not necessarily moronic. 

If you think of impossibility as a number of factors that prevent the task's
accomplishment, if you add more such factors, it becomes "more impossible."
Me winning the 100m dash in the Olympics is impossible; me doing it against
Usain Bolt is even more impossible.

In an analogous fashion, mathematicians talk of greater and lesser
infinities. Mathematically, one infinity can be more infinite than another
infinity, e.g., the infinity of all numbers is more infinite than the
infinity of prime numbers.

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> On Behalf Of
Sent: Friday, December 11, 2020 11:23 AM
Subject: Re: [ADS-L] more impossible

> I can understand if something is "possible" it could be made  even 
> "more possible."  But a TV announcer said something that was 
> "impossible" was made even more "impossible".  I don't think that's
possible if it's impossible in the first place.
> Tom Zurinskas,

This is more of a comment on the announcer than it is of the phrase "more
impossible".  I.e., he's not a good writer/speaker of the English language.

Is there some sort of law, "Never attribute to a new feature of language
that which can be explained by a moron using the language?"  It would
account for many usages which are reported here.
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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

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