I Need Help From The Native Speakers.

Imran   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 06:22 GMT
I'm typing some sentences with a view to finding out from you which word is most commonly used in everyday speech in America,UK, Austrailia, etc;

1.Don't eat like a horse, or you'll be fat.
2.Don't eat like a horse, or else you'll be fat.
3.Don't eat like a horse, otherwise you'll be fat.

I do know all the sentences are correct,but just want to discover that which of the words or word is mostly used.

Ryan   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 06:40 GMT
I have always heard "or else," but I've heard it without "else" when spoken colloquially, as in "Don't do that or you'll be sorry." I've never heard "otherwise" spoken in this context in the United States before except by extremely stuffy people.

Imran   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 07:09 GMT
Hi Ryan
Is otherwise formal?What about British English?Is it used in that?
mjd   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 07:22 GMT
If I had to rank them in terms of formality: (least to most formal)

1) Don't eat like a horse, or you'll be fat.

2) Don't eat like a horse, otherwise you'll be fat.

3) Don't eat like a horse, or else you'll be fat.

Granted, this is based on my opinion, but you could pretty much say which ever one you wanted. They all mean exactly the same thing, as you said.
Imran   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 07:58 GMT
Hi mjd
Everything's ok?I've not had a chat with you for a long time.I can't figure out why such a big difference between you and Ryan can take place even though you both live in US. Just go through his reply.He says he never heard the word ''otherwise''
imran   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 08:05 GMT
Sorry I couldn't cmplete my message.ryan said that He had never heard this word in the sense we're discussing about.
I hope you won't mind, Ryan.
mjd   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 17:16 GMT
Hi Imran, how are you.

I don't know. "Otherwise" doesn't seem too stuffy to me. In my opinion "or else" would definitely be the choice for "most formal." I'd say the most common way to say this would be:

"Don't eat like a horse, or you'll get fat."
abbeylai   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 17:54 GMT
Oh you are so smart!
Ryan   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 18:01 GMT
Nobody says "otherwise" where I'm from in Michigan, and I don't think they say it around here in Kansas either. I'm not sure where they say it. It sounds very British to me.

Jacob   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 18:03 GMT
In informal, spoken American English many of us would simply omit the connector:

"Don't eat like a horse, you'll get fat."

The implied bit ("you'll get fat [if you do]") would be perfectly obvious to the listener.

Writing it with a comma and no conjunction as I've done above would be fairly bad form. In written form, any of the three possibilities you asked about seems about the same to me.
mjd   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 19:24 GMT
"Otherwise" is commonly used here in the Northeast USA. I was a bit surprised when I read what Ryan wrote.
Clark   Sunday, September 14, 2003, 19:41 GMT
Well, in sunny California you will hear all three. I have heard many foreigners :-P say that California English is a mixture of the English you hear all over the United States, but has its own accent. I had an English teacher in high school who said that when he came here, he expected averyone to say, "dude" and "far out," but instead, he thought we sounded almost Midwestern.
wassabi   Saturday, September 20, 2003, 03:18 GMT
number 1, just don't forget to include canada, i'd call it NA
Christian   Monday, September 22, 2003, 16:24 GMT
Hello Everyone!, especially those american native speakers who I need help from...
I am from Lima - Peru and I have finished studying English some months ago; I am wondering which should be the best accent to use when speaking in English; here on TV programs or shows I can notice many accents so I would like to get one of these but I don't know exactly which one. Is there any advantage on one of them, or maybe a better accent?

What would you recommend??? please send me also some tips to get that accent. Thank you

I hope to hear from you soon

mjd   Monday, September 22, 2003, 19:19 GMT
I suppose a nice neutral "CNN" style accent would be the easiest one for you to learn. Otherwise, just choose one of your favorite movie stars and try to mimic their accent.