fit in

1
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What verb would work best to talk about fitting in, in a social sense?
Also, I know that the article is used with church and school (i.e. Voy a la escuela. never Voy a escuela.) but is that also true of other places of learning; college, university'

5557 views
updated OCT 1, 2011
posted by Redimida

44 Answers

0
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I had thought they were in (roughly) equal distribution (with generational differences being the primary factor) but, if Anthony Burgess considers it to be an American/British English shiboleth, who am I to argue with him'

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by samdie
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In response to James. Great research!

Now I say that we Americans are really stupid, to take a regular verb and make it irregular!!!! (I would have supposed that the process was going the other way.)

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Natasha
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From the Net:

  1. Fit vs. Fitted - Two Options

One of the few significant differences that we found between American irregular verbs and British irregular verbs was with the form fitted. In British English, the form fitted seems to be preferred. In American English, the situation appears to be more complicated. Our research indicates that Americans generally prefer the simple past and past participle form fit. However, when the verb fit is used to mean "to tailor," they seem to prefer fitted.

From Garner's Modern American Usage:

FIT>FITTED>FITTED (traditionally): FIT>FIT>FIT (more modernly in American English). Just since the mid-20th century, American English has witnessed a shift in the past tense and past participle form 'fitted? to 'fit.? Traditionally, 'fit? would have been considered incorrect, but began appearing in journalism and even scholarly writing as early as the 1950s. David S. Berkeley, 'The Past Tense of Fit,''''30 American Speech (1955), page 311 (1955): 'This CASUALISM now appears even in what is generally considered well-edited American journalism, especially where the 'fit? is not a physical attachment but a match.?

This may explain Eddy's strong reaction to "fitted," given his age.

Also from the above site:
The traditionally correct past tense still surfaces, especially in British English, but in American English it is becoming rarer (and stuffier) year by year. And the traditional form remains with prefixed derivatives (e.g. RETROFITTED, OUTFITTED). Although FITTED may one day be extinct as a verb form, it will undoubtedly persist as an adjective

Anthony Burgess considered the past FIT to be one of the prime differentiators between British English and American English: 'A British reader of American expository prose feels totally at home until he comes to FIT as a past tense ('This FIT his theory') and the past participle 'gotten,? which has disappeared from Britain (except in dialectical forms, where it often appears as 'getten').'''A Mouthful of Air? (1992) by Anthony Burgess, page 280.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
0
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Last week I bought a suit (ready made/off the rack/pret a porter) and it fit me perfectly! (to get away from the possible weirdness of references to high-school [for our British cousins]). I find this completely unobjectionable. Admittedly, I would also accept "it fitted me..." but I don't think that I would be likely to say that myself.

P.S. (for Natasha) The OED on CD says nothing about past tense/participle forms. Unfortunately, the relevant examples are either couched in the present tense or (when in the past) use "fitted". This is, of course, not conclusive, since absence of examples does not constitute an argument for the non-existence of same.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by samdie
0
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TimEivissa said:

Eddy said:

Natasha said:

at last an ally . . .Actually, Eddy, this indeed appears to be a British English / American English distinction. The American Heritage Dictionary (on my desk) says "fitted or fit" for the past tense. The OED online does not list any irregular past tense for "fit" (It does for irregular verbs like, say, read or eat).Well, have we run this horse into the ground yet'?

Now that´s a phase we have in common, "run a horse into the ground". All I have ever said was that usage about "high school" would never be understood in England.

I think we've "jumped the shark" on this one!!!

Sorry...I couldn't resist it! wink

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumped_the_shark

Now you have completely lost me, he he

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
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Eddy said:

Natasha said:

at last an ally . . .Actually, Eddy, this indeed appears to be a British English / American English distinction. The American Heritage Dictionary (on my desk) says "fitted or fit" for the past tense. The OED online does not list any irregular past tense for "fit" (It does for irregular verbs like, say, read or eat).Well, have we run this horse into the ground yet'?

Now that´s a phase we have in common, "run a horse into the ground". All I have ever said was that usage about "high school" would never be understood in England.

I think we've "jumped the shark" on this one!!!
Sorry...I couldn't resist it! wink

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumped_the_shark

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by TimEivissa
0
votes

Natasha said:

at last an ally . . .

Actually, Eddy, this indeed appears to be a British English / American English distinction. The American Heritage Dictionary (on my desk) says "fitted or fit" for the past tense. The OED online does not list any irregular past tense for "fit" (It does for irregular verbs like, say, read or eat).

Well, have we run this horse into the ground yet'?

Now that´s a phase we have in common, "run a horse into the ground". All I have ever said was that usage about "high school" would never be understood in England.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
0
votes

at last an ally . . .

Actually, Eddy, this indeed appears to be a British English / American English distinction. The American Heritage Dictionary (on my desk) says "fitted or fit" for the past tense. The OED online does not list any irregular past tense for "fit" (It does for irregular verbs like, say, read or eat).

Well, have we run this horse into the ground yet''

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Natasha
0
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tad said:

At school I never used to fit in. I didn't fit in at school.

At school I never fitted in.

I think most of the people I know would use these too, Eddy wink

At last an ally

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
0
votes

At school I never used to fit in.
I didn't fit in at school.
At school I never fitted in.

I think most of the people I know would use these too, Eddy wink

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by tad
0
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James Santiago said:

Eddy said:

James Santiago said:

But, Tim, that is something different. You are losing the meaning of "never" that way. How would you say it with "never" left in place?

You would say "I never use to fit in"

Eddy, that construction requires "used," not "use." And THAT is the same everywhere in the English-speaking world.

And Natasha's comment referred to the famous quote "Two countries separated by a common language."

Sorry, all I saw were the words two countries. Also "use" instead of "used" was a typing error and THAT occurs frequently on this site as well as in the English speaking world.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
0
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Eddy said:

James Santiago said:

But, Tim, that is something different. You are losing the meaning of "never" that way. How would you say it with "never" left in place?

You would say "I never use to fit in"

Eddy, that construction requires "used," not "use." And THAT is the same everywhere in the English-speaking world.

And Natasha's comment referred to the famous quote "Two countries separated by a common language."

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
0
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Natasha said:

Then there is just one more thing that I can add. No one I know would ever say that.

Two countries . . .

Cannot see the relevance of your reply.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
0
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James Santiago said:

But, Tim, that is something different. You are losing the meaning of "never" that way. How would you say it with "never" left in place?

You would say "I never use to fit in"

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy
0
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TimEivissa said:

Eddy said:

Redimida said:

Sorry.An example for the first question: When I was in high school I never fitted in.

Just a small correction to your statement.

"When I was in High School,I didn't fit in" would surely be the correct way to say it.

I completely agree with that Tim.

updated NOV 18, 2008
posted by Eddy