Friday, June 14, 2019

Dear Guy Who Knows a Few Grammar Rules But Isn't an Authority by Any Means ...

Q: You're the first person I thought of to know the answer to this. My wife was wondering at breakfast how to say, "I very much would like to see that movie," but using the word "bad" or "badly." 

Is it "I want to see it bad?" or "I want to see it badly?"

We're stuck on the fact that the latter option could mean "I want to see it without skill." But the first option just sounds ... bad.

Thank you, sir!

A: Both options are correct, apparently:

I think "badly" is the better choice on paper, but "bad" sounds, and feels, better when spoken.

Paul McCartney, can you give us a definitive answer in the form of an '80s earworm?

Thank you, Sir Paul.

The other day I had to look up "lay" vs. "lie" for the millionth time. I just need to remember from now on that the Replacements were grammatically correct when they sang "Lay It Down Clown" and Eric Clapton was incorrect when he sang "Lay Down Sally," because Sally is the subject, and the subject can only lie down even though Sally could lay objects down, clown, if she wanted.