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January 13, 2012

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I'm surprising that McKean doesn't acknowledge that "ungrammatical" song lyrics reflect common usage, i.e., vernacular speech, even while acknowledging that "the right kind of wrong" is ok with more obviously ethnic speech. This is especially true for lie/lay "confusion" and the use of "was" to mark the conditional.

All this the more surprising given McKean's background in that most democratic of linguistic vocations, namely lexicography, where you are obliged to listen to how people _actually_ talk.

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