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    #1

    To have it be

    @MikeNewYork, @Barb_D, thank you both, you have been of great help.

    My all questions regarding "nor" has been answered, but I will squeeze in one more question that has nothing to do with "nor". I will ask it here since I do not know anything about it, if I post a new thread, I wouldn't know how to title it.

    One man has his face burnt off and another man comes out and says to him in a pawky way: "You're the only guy to have his face burnt off and it be an improvement."

    Now I understand what the sentence means but I haven't seen structure like this before. I'm talking about the "and it be an improvement" part. The way "it be" is connected with the first part of the sentence... I don't understand it. What's the grammatic structure here? How can we exemplify it further?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Quote Originally Posted by kiezel52 View Post
    @MikeNewYork, @Barb_D, thank you both, you have been of great help.

    My all questions regarding "nor" has been answered, but I will squeeze in one more question that has nothing to do with "nor". I will ask it here since I do not know anything about it, if I post a new thread, I wouldn't know how to title it.

    One man has his face burnt off and another man comes out and says to him in a pawky way: "You're the only guy to have his face burnt off and it be an improvement."

    Now I understand what the sentence means but I haven't seen structure like this before. I'm talking about the "and it be an improvement" part. The way "it be" is connected with the first part of the sentence... I don't understand it. What's the grammatic structure here? How can we exemplify it further?
    In my opinion, it is an error. It is an attempt at using the subjunctive where the subjunctive doesn't belong. It should be "it is an improvement".

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    #3

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    In my opinion, it is an error. It is an attempt at using the subjunctive where the subjunctive doesn't belong. It should be "it is an improvement".
    Okay, I've checked the sentence again and actually there is not a "You're" in the beginning of the sentence.
    It goes like this: "You look good, Niki. The only guy to have his face burnt off and it be an improvement."

    Does that change anything? I'm only guessing but "The" might be justifying the "it be" part. I'm not sure, though.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Quote Originally Posted by kiezel52 View Post
    Okay, I've checked the sentence again and actually there is not a "You're" in the beginning of the sentence.
    It goes like this: "You look good, Niki. The only guy to have his face burnt off and it be an improvement."

    Does that change anything? I'm only guessing but "The" might be justifying the "it be" part. I'm not sure, though.
    No change. Still an error.

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    #5

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    I disagree - "to have ... it be an improvement" is how I read this. I can't image how I would write it otherwise, except perhaps "To have his face burn off and for it to be an improvement."

    (I moved your posts unrelated to your orginal topic to a new thread.)
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #6

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I disagree - "to have ... it be an improvement" is how I read this. I can't image how I would write it otherwise, except perhaps "To have his face burn off and for it to be an improvement."
    No, I'm positive that there is not a "for" before "it". What role do you think "have" is in that sentence?

    Is it causative? If it were causative, shouldn't it be "...to has/had his face burnt off..."
    Is it possessive? If it were possessive, shouldn't it be "...only guy to have a burnt off face..."

    I'm really confused.

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    #7

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Barb did not say there should be a 'for'; she suggested that as an alternative. Like Barb, I see the original as:

    "You're the only guy to have his face burnt off and ((to) have) it be an improvement."

    'Have' is neither causative nor possessive. It is used in the sense of 'experience', as in:

    I had my car stolen yesterday, and then I had the police accuse me of lying.

    This is identical in appearance to a sentence with causative 'have'. Only context and common sense tell us which meaning is intended.

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    #8

    Re: "Nor" usage and inversion

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    "You're the only guy to have his face burnt off and ((to) have) it be an improvement."
    It works better with (to) have for me because of the the change from burnt to be.

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