Friday, August 25, 2006

Infer a surprise

I love-hate these lyrics from Fort Minor, "Get Me Gone":
I only do email responses to print interviews because
these people love to put a twist to your words
to infer that you said something fucking absurd.

Oh, did I lose you at "infer?"
Not used to hearing a verse that uses over
first grade vocabulary words?
You mean... like "imply?"

4 comments:

stolee said...

"infer" is correct, because the other person is doing it. Only the speaker can imply, and the listener infers.

Travis said...

"These people" are the ones implying. They're suggesting that Mike said something absurd, without saying it. I think that "imply" fits much better than infer, though infer perhaps could also fit: they could infer that he said something absurd. That would mean that they were speculating that he said something absurd, but that's at odds with their desire to put a twist to your words, and generally not something to complain about.

I stand by my original statement that it should be "imply," not "infer." (Well, actually, that was more an implication, not a statement...)

Tyler Stirling said...

The correct modern useage is 'imply'. As far as I can tell by researching it, he might have used infer correctly if the song was written a century or two ago. Not so now though. I laughed at his mistake too.

Travis said...

Whoa, comment necromancy.