Bring and Take, and my children's confusion about those two words

SerpentRuss

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So my son, the fledgling guitarist, was at his cousin's house a few weeks ago and he and his cousin cooked some type of gawd-awful casserole. They like to cook; cleaning, not so much. So when he came back to our place, he brought the leftovers home with him. Why? I don't know. Trust me, it was inedible. So, we've had this casserole dish, which I cleaned BTW, in our kitchen for a while.

So today he tells me he's going to go to his cousin's to "jam and record" this weekend. I tell him to make sure he takes back the casserole dish and point to it. He's forgotten it about a dozen times. I should add that his cousin, my nephew, lives about 5 miles from us and we see him almost daily. This is not the first time I've pointed out the casserole dish that his aunt is missing and has asked about several times.

So, he picks it up and says. "You want me to bring this to Connor's house?"

"No, I want you to take it to Connor's house.

"That's, what I just said"

"No, you're taking it, not bringing it."

We're obviously at an impasse and this is important because Words Freaking Mean Things! BTW, all four of my kids say bring when they should say take. My wife doesn't, I don't, but somewhere along the line, they've learned it wrong. And while I'd like to throw their education under the bus, they were all home schooled up to the 9th grade. So I guess it's got to be my wife's fault. ;)

To make a long story short, I explained the difference between the two words until I could tell he was getting really good and bored, and then I explained it some more. It's what I do, hammer on something until the head is good and mushroomed.

I'm sure it will make no difference. because the conversation ended with him walking away and saying, "whatever".
 

Brad Pittiful

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it could be considered slang use...just like fix...im northern and dont use or hear it in my area...but i hear southerners use it

fixin to make dinner

fix a sandwich
 

tfarny

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Nerd Alert!

Your son, like me (with a doctorate in Applied Linguistics) and millions of others, probably DOES have the restriction against using "take" to mean carrying something towards the speaker (*take me another beer please!) as most people do. But he does not limit the meaning of "bring" to mean only carrying objects towards the speaker. For him, and many, many other people, bring can also be used to refer to carrying objects towards a third party or the hearer. so, "?I'm going to bring John that record" and "?I will bring that record over to your house" sounds perfectly fine to lots of us, but not to you. It's an interesting little way in which native speakers of English differ, there are hundreds of others and probably many unstudied. For myself, I can understand the distinction I just explained (I teach English grammar!) but its significance / relevance is totally lost on me and always has been.

There is nothing sacred or fixed about word meanings or usage - as long we understand most of what another person says, getting our cargo shorts in a twist about subtle variations in word meaning and restrictions on word use is just a fun parlor game. Ain't used to be the proper Elizabethan English contraction for "am not" which was preserved only in the speech of rural Americans and lost to "polite" society. "Gift" was not a verb until about 25 years ago, it was only a noun. "I gifted him that book" probably still grates on the ears of a lot of older people, who would much prefer "I gave him that book." And now the rules governing third person pronoun use seem to be changing, to my great surprise (that kind of thing happens very rarely!)
 

nojazzhere

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I hate to burst your bubble, but trying to change habits at this late stage is going to be a bust. Further, I don’t think you can go any farther down this path.
Oh, make no mistake, I know I'm beat, LOL.
NO! NO! NO!......NEVER GIVE UP!.....NEVER SURRENDER!
Parenting is never a "done" job. Now, later in life it requires more subtlety and finesse than when your children are younger.....but you never stop trying. My daughter is 51 years-old, and I'm still hoping she'll grow up someday. (Wish me luck)
 

OmegaWoods

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@SerpentRuss

You probably shouldn't go to Wisconsin. Your head will explode. I lived there for 10 years and the rampant misuse of words grated on my nerves from the time I arrived to the time I left. As a bonus, my eldest daughter-in-law now lives locally and has imported their strange proto-language here to Tennessee.
 

SerpentRuss

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@SerpentRuss

You probably shouldn't go to Wisconsin. Your head will explode. I lived there for 10 years and the rampant misuse of words grated on my nerves from the time I arrived to the time I left. As a bonus, my eldest daughter-in-law now lives locally and has imported their strange proto-language here to Tennessee.
It's no wonder, they're practically Canadians!
 

SerpentRuss

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Ah, you're so right. But my usage of words is the "standard" in my home. My shorts aren't in a twist, but I am truly dismayed that my last child at home has failed to pick up my personal and precise form of speaking. He does however play guitar much better than I do, so I guess it all balances out.

I should probably concentrate on some of his other faults, like not "bringing out" the trash and not doing the dishes.
Nerd Alert!

Your son, like me (with a doctorate in Applied Linguistics) and millions of others, probably DOES have the restriction against using "take" to mean carrying something towards the speaker (*take me another beer please!) as most people do. But he does not limit the meaning of "bring" to mean only carrying objects towards the speaker. For him, and many, many other people, bring can also be used to refer to carrying objects towards a third party or the hearer. so, "?I'm going to bring John that record" and "?I will bring that record over to your house" sounds perfectly fine to lots of us, but not to you. It's an interesting little way in which native speakers of English differ, there are hundreds of others and probably many unstudied. For myself, I can understand the distinction I just explained (I teach English grammar!) but its significance / relevance is totally lost on me and always has been.

There is nothing sacred or fixed about word meanings or usage - as long we understand most of what another person says, getting our cargo shorts in a twist about subtle variations in word meaning and restrictions on word use is just a fun parlor game. Ain't used to be the proper Elizabethan English contraction for "am not" which was preserved only in the speech of rural Americans and lost to "polite" society. "Gift" was not a verb until about 25 years ago, it was only a noun. "I gifted him that book" probably still grates on the ears of a lot of older people, who would much prefer "I gave him that book." And now the rules governing third person pronoun use seem to be changing, to my great surprise (that kind of thing happens very rarely!)
 

Charlie Bernstein

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Nerd Alert!

Your son, like me (with a doctorate in Applied Linguistics) and millions of others, probably DOES have the restriction against using "take" to mean carrying something towards the speaker (*take me another beer please!) as most people do. But he does not limit the meaning of "bring" to mean only carrying objects towards the speaker. For him, and many, many other people, bring can also be used to refer to carrying objects towards a third party or the hearer. so, "?I'm going to bring John that record" and "?I will bring that record over to your house" sounds perfectly fine to lots of us, but not to you. It's an interesting little way in which native speakers of English differ, there are hundreds of others and probably many unstudied. For myself, I can understand the distinction I just explained (I teach English grammar!) but its significance / relevance is totally lost on me and always has been.

There is nothing sacred or fixed about word meanings or usage - as long we understand most of what another person says, getting our cargo shorts in a twist about subtle variations in word meaning and restrictions on word use is just a fun parlor game. Ain't used to be the proper Elizabethan English contraction for "am not" which was preserved only in the speech of rural Americans and lost to "polite" society. "Gift" was not a verb until about 25 years ago, it was only a noun. "I gifted him that book" probably still grates on the ears of a lot of older people, who would much prefer "I gave him that book." And now the rules governing third person pronoun use seem to be changing, to my great surprise (that kind of thing happens very rarely!)
Thanks! Yes, indeed!
 




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