Friday, August 9, 2013

Verbs on the Go

I put a whole lot of miles on my car this summer. I drove through the Piedmont, Pocono, Catskill, Adirondack, Green, Allegheny and Blue Ridge mountain ranges. This trip was a much needed vacation from work and school and life in general. I camped for five days and four nights, visited the Baseball Hall of Fame, swam in lakes and rivers and waterfalls, and met up with friends for hiking and catching up and some more swimming. And the views were breathtaking. You certainly don't see this in the city.

Peeked vs. Peaked

The view at the top of Sterling Mountain
Imagine your two eyes peeking around a corner, and every "A" you've written has peAked like a mountain on the page. Got to love mnemonic devices that are both auditory and visual.

Speeded vs. Sped

Driving across Lake Champlain Bridge
Speeded means to accelerate, sped means to hasten to. If you want to get technical, speeded is used with a direct object and sped is used with a preposition. Slightly different meanings used for slightly difference constructs. Someone might have speeded the process, while another might have sped towards a conclusion. (I've talked about a similar definition-based verb usage in my Lighted vs. Lit post.)

Sneaked vs. Snuck

Sunrise in Smuggler's Notch
Sneaked is the past participial of to sneak, snuck is, well, utter nonsense. In fact, why we think it's more natural to say snuck instead of sneaked, I will never know as this form of irregular conjugation occurs with very few verbs (clung, dug, drunk, hung, rung, run, shrunk, sprung, stuck, struck, sung, sunk, swum, swung, thrust, trod, won, wrung). You don't say rusk but risked. Struck might be past tense for strike, but streaked is past tense for streak. Even hung has an exception when referencing a person being hanged. However, I concede that language is constantly developing, and snuck is kind of a new linguistic evolution. Even if I don't like it.

And now I need to get back to working on my critical thesis. Until next summer.

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