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    • Join Date: Sep 2005
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    #1

    It's a-OK

    Hi,

    Matilda's question about "time's a-flying"
    reminds me to ask about the term
    "It's a-OK" (or should it be "It's A-OK"?)
    The "A" is just a regionalism, or
    it is "A" as in "A grade" (top grade)?

    Enquiring minds want to know. :)

    Thanks


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
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    #2

    Re: It's a-OK

    Quote Originally Posted by englishstudent View Post
    Hi,
    Matilda's question about "time's a-flying"
    reminds me to ask about the term
    "It's a-OK" (or should it be "It's A-OK"?)
    The "A" is just a regionalism, or
    it is "A" as in "A grade" (top grade)?
    Enquiring minds want to know. :)
    Thanks
    I think the "a" stands for absolutely . It`s a colloquial expression which means perfectly/ absolutely OK.

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    #3

    Re: It's a-OK

    It could also stand for ALL OK.

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    #4

    Re: It's a-OK

    Quote Originally Posted by Red5 View Post
    It could also stand for ALL OK.
    Why did you use "could"? Why not "can"?

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    #5

    Re: It's a-OK

    Because I was offering an opinion and not a fact. I wasn't sure if my suggestion was correct or not.


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    #6

    Re: It's a-OK

    Thank you Tom Slocombe.
    And for your opinion, Red 5. :)


    Talking about "OK" I read somewhere that OK was
    Andrew Jackson's (US President) way of saying "all correct".
    Don't know if this is true.
    (Jackson was supposed to be a poor speller.
    I like a quotation attributed to him - "It is a damn poor mind that
    can spell a word only in one way.") :)


    • Join Date: Mar 2006
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    #7

    Re: It's a-OK

    Quote Originally Posted by englishstudent View Post
    Thank you Tom Slocombe.
    And for your opinion, Red 5. :)
    Talking about "OK" I read somewhere that OK was
    Andrew Jackson's (US President) way of saying "all correct".
    Don't know if this is true.
    (Jackson was supposed to be a poor speller.
    I like a quotation attributed to him - "It is a damn poor mind that
    can spell a word only in one way.") :)
    There are many theories about the origin of OK, but in fact they are all speculative. The following web site gives a few:

    "www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/aboutwordorigins/ok"

    I have also heard it told that it comes from illiterate American dockers who would scrawl Orl Krect onto the side of ships after loading or unloading.


    • Join Date: Aug 2006
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    #8

    Re: It's a-OK

    If would prefer to be overly grammatically correct, you should always use 'okay'. However it is not a largely important thing. With english there are countless rules that are hardly ever applied to writing or speech.


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    #9

    Re: It's a-OK

    Quote Originally Posted by bmass View Post
    If would prefer to be overly grammatically correct, you should always use 'okay'. However it is not a largely important thing. With english there are countless rules that are hardly ever applied to writing or speech.
    I am not arguing against your point above, but merely
    making an observation. If "okay" was not a word "originally"
    (meaning that it came into being as a way of writing OK),
    it was probably considered a neologism at one point (this is
    just my conjecture). Today, we see things like
    "FYI", "ASAP" in office memos in the US.
    It would be interesting to see how the language
    changes especially with the younger generation using
    "u" and "ur" in messages and emails. The "older" generation
    may frown upon such usage, especially in formal communication
    (and I have seen these exact words in office emails), but
    the more people use it, the more the chances that it will
    creep in whether we like it or not. I remember reading
    some quotation about how the progress of the world
    is dependent not on the logical or the reasonable people
    but rather the unreasonable ones. At the risk of
    digressing, the recent world events definitely seem to
    bear this out. The unreasonable ones are the ones causing
    changes in the world.

    Another point I wanted to mention is that even though
    I understand and agree that many rules are hardly applied
    in writing or in speech, it is a challenge for non-native
    speakers to know this, and so they tend to stick to learning
    grammatically correct forms. And many a times, it is not
    the choice of the student but the teacher makes them learn
    these rather than the natural form, most likely because the
    teacher him/herself is not familiar with the natural forms, having
    studied/learned from books written and taught by an earlier
    generation.


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    #10

    Re: It's a-OK

    Quote Originally Posted by Coffa View Post
    There are many theories about the origin of OK, but in fact they are all speculative. The following web site gives a few:
    "www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/aboutwordorigins/ok"
    I have also heard it told that it comes from illiterate American dockers who would scrawl Orl Krect onto the side of ships after loading or unloading.

    Coffa, thank you very much for that link and for the dockers story.

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