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"Prom" vs. "The Prom"

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Eli M., Jun 23, 2007.

  1. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

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    Pointless grammar thread.

    This has been bothering me since high school.

    A friend of mine, whose girlfriend is a high school senior, went to the senior prom with her.

    Did they go to the prom or did they go to prom? I have always included the definite article when talking about this event, but lately I'm hearing more and more high school students leave it out.

    What are your thoughts about this?
  2. soulgeezer

    soulgeezer

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    In "the prom," "prom" is a noun. It is the name of the event. When using "prom" without the definite article, as part of an infinitive, it is a verb. For example:

    "I am going to the prom."

    "I am going to prom."

    In both examples, "prom" is an abbreviation of "promenade." In the first example, it's just the name of the event, "the promenade." In the second, it is the verb "to promenade."

    Both are correct. You can go "to the promenade" or "to promenade." One is where you'll be, the other is what you'll be doing.

    There, does that clear things up?

    (I explained that REALLY badly - it's 2:00am right now - but I think you get what I mean... At least, I hope so, anyway!)
  3. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

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    It makes more sense with "the".
  4. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

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    Actually, you explained it very well. My next question would be: are the people who use "prom" as a verb aware that they are doing this, or are they thinking it's a noun and that it's okay to omit the definite article?
  5. soulgeezer

    soulgeezer

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    Think about it using this alternate example:

    "I am going to the dance."

    "I am going to dance."

    The first says where you're going. The second says what you'll be doing somewhere at sometime. So, yes, it is clearer with the definite article included.
  6. soulgeezer

    soulgeezer

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    Actually, my guess would be that it's a colloquial usage and they aren't aware that they're using a verb. They probably think that they're describing the event, not the activity.

    The question that I'd like to ask these people is whether or not what "prom" is short for. I'll bet most don't!
  7. Poop-Loops

    Poop-Loops

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    I never went, so I don't care.
  8. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

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  9. jucas

    jucas

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    While were asking about grammar... does "Recommend me a bass" work? I always though one had to recomend an object, as in "Recomend a bass to me" Is that way off?

    Its not a hijack if the original question is answered...
  10. soulgeezer

    soulgeezer

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    Does it work? On a purely communicative level, yes. People understand you're meaning and respond in a way appropriate to your inquiry.

    However, it is grammatically incorrect. The verb "to recommend" doesn't take personal pronouns as objects. Therefore, the correct way to write it would be, "Recommend a bass to me."
  11. Depth_Charge

    Depth_Charge

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    I fink sumtimes people will use words that don'
    t
    always relate or appear the way i or You would expect so in these cases it'
    s

    offen good to a little give?!

    I believe it's called tolerance. I sure wish something as simple as how people choose to express themselves was an issue in my life.

    Fifteen years ago it used to be.

    ;)
  12. MAJOR METAL

    MAJOR METAL A Hard Rockin Lover of GREENBURST Supporting Member

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    Either way mine was an aweful expirence that I will never forget !
  13. Depth_Charge

    Depth_Charge

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    We don't have a prom here. We have "the school ball".

    Mine sucked too. I didn't even bother with a date.
  14. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

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    I didn't go to my senior prom, but the year after I graduated, I was hired to play piano for the prom cocktail hour.
  15. MAJOR METAL

    MAJOR METAL A Hard Rockin Lover of GREENBURST Supporting Member

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    How was the pay ?
  16. Eric Perry

    Eric Perry

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    FWIW, I hate when people leave out the "The". Don't know why, but it irritates me.


    That'll be all. :cool:
  17. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

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    If I remember correctly they paid me $100 for the hour.
  18. MAJOR METAL

    MAJOR METAL A Hard Rockin Lover of GREENBURST Supporting Member

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    Great !
  19. jucas

    jucas

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    Thats what I thought, thanks. Somehow that use irritates me even though my usual stance on grammar is that if its easily understandable it doesn't matter.
  20. KeithBMI

    KeithBMI

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    I finished mine up. It was fun... but not for $150.00

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