The car needs cleaned.

Visnja   Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:03 am GMT
Rooms to let

Rooms to be let


Which is correct?
thanks
Lazar   Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:48 am GMT
I think "rooms to let" is the preferred version.

That reminds me of a song, by the way...
Trailers for sale or rent
Rooms to let, fifty cents
No phone, no pool, no pets
Ain't got no cigarettes
But two hours of pushin' broom buys a
Eight by twelve four-bit room
I'm a man of means by no means,
King of the road

;-)
Uriel   Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:49 am GMT
Good song, Lazar!
Travis   Thu Sep 15, 2005 7:14 am GMT
>><<"The car needs cleaned." --> sounds horrible, doesn't make any sense and isn't correct.>>

But mjd, it's a valid construction in some dialects of English. It may sound very weird to people whose dialects don't have such a feature, and it may not be "standard," but that doesn't mean it's incorrect. Millions of native speakers use that form daily. Anyway, good to see you around again :)<<

Speaking of correctness, such things are not incorrect within the context of the dialects which do have such constructions; however, such things may be incorrect from a native-speaker point of view in other dialects, when one considers correctness as being defined as grammaticality for a native speaker of a given dialect, rather than any prescriptive notions of "correctness". For example, from my own point of view, this given construct is not simply not used in my dialect or somewhat unfamiliar, unlike some constructions like the use of "them" as a plural demonstrative pronoun, which is not used in my dialect but which I do not subjectively sense as ungrammatical, but rather is overtly ungrammatical *in my dialect*, no matter what the register in question may happen to be. As for why others here have in many cases strongly insisted that such is simply "incorrect", such is probably not simply due to prescriptivist notions about such, but rather because such is likewise very ungrammatical in the native dialects of the individuals in question.
Kirk   Thu Sep 15, 2005 7:38 am GMT
<<As for why others here have in many cases strongly insisted that such is simply "incorrect", such is probably not simply due to prescriptivist notions about such, but rather because such is likewise very ungrammatical in the native dialects of the individuals in question.>>

Yes, and it's ungrammatical in my dialect. However, I wanted to point out that its ungrammaticality wasn't an absolute, which is what some people implied.
Scottish Tom   Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:05 pm GMT
<<Yes, and it's ungrammatical in my dialect. However, I wanted to point out that its ungrammaticality wasn't an absolute, which is what some people implied.>>

Yeah, you're right Kirk. A sentence that says it's not correct in all dialects needs (to be) corrected.
mjd   Thu Sep 15, 2005 11:57 pm GMT
Sorry, Kirk, I didn't mean to come off as sounding "absolute," I was just referring to "standard" English that non-natives would be studying in English classes.

From what I understand this expression is used in some parts of the U.S. and is said to have originated in Scotland, but I must say, I've never heard it used in my entire life.
Kirk   Fri Sep 16, 2005 3:58 am GMT
<<Sorry, Kirk, I didn't mean to come off as sounding "absolute," I was just referring to "standard" English that non-natives would be studying in English classes.>>

No prob. Yeah it would probably be best for nonnatives not to use such a construction unless they go to some area that uses it.

<<From what I understand this expression is used in some parts of the U.S. and is said to have originated in Scotland, but I must say, I've never heard it used in my entire life.>>

Yeah I don't think I've heard it used before either, but I first found out about it a couple years ago when I had a TA for a linguistics class and she was from Ohio. She said in her region that was a common construction and thought it sounded completely normal--she didn't know it wasn't used everywhere until she came to California for grad school and realized people didn't say that here. She, being a student in the Master's program for computational linguistics, was obviously a pretty educated person so I think it goes without saying that even for the most educated of speakers it's a normal construction in some areas.
Gjones2   Sat Sep 17, 2005 10:03 am GMT
"Needs cleaned": the only place I ever recall seeing that expression in on forums about languages. I now accept the fact that native speakers of English do use it in some regions, but for me it produces an extremely jarring effect. "Needs" makes me look toward the present or future, then suddenly -- with no kind of verbal transition -- 'cleaned' jerks me backward, toward the past. 'Needs to be cleaned', on the other hand, has 'to be', which provides a transition and clue that 'cleaned' isn't in the past. 'Needs cleaning' also sounds fine to me.

I realize that there's not much point in trying to reason about the acceptability of an idiom. It's based on convention, and it won't sound unnatural to persons who are used to it. I can't stand it myself, though.
todd m   Fri Sep 30, 2005 7:40 am GMT
OK I found it.sorry. yes "needs cleaned" drives me batty also.But....I was told its the proper English in"these here parts" hahaha
Adam   Sat Oct 01, 2005 10:49 am GMT
"The car needs cleaned."

It makes sense to me.
Frances   Sat Oct 01, 2005 12:30 pm GMT
Doesn't sit well with me. I would say "the car needs to be cleaned" or "the car needs cleaning".
Geoff_One   Sat Oct 01, 2005 2:37 pm GMT
Car Owner: "So far, what has been done about the mechanical problems
that need fixing on my car?"
Mechanic: "The car needs? ... cleaned."

In an abstract way and a slightly different context, it can make sense.
Frances   Sat Oct 01, 2005 11:33 pm GMT
Geoff_One - it still doesn't sound right to my ears.

Also,
"Rooms to let", means to me rooms are ready to be leased.

"Rooms to be let", means to me that rooms in the future will be leased.
Geoff_One   Sun Oct 02, 2005 9:39 am GMT
Car Owner: "My car has a number of mechanical problems that need fixing. I have written each one of these down on a separate piece of note book paper (1) - you can have them. Please pay particular attention to the fuel filter problem as I believe the fuel that is making its way to the
engine is quite dirty (2)"
Mechanic: "Don't worry we'll clean them all up."
{Sometime later the car owner half surprizes the mechanic.}
Car Owner: "So far, what has been done about the mechanical problems
that need fixing on my car?"
Mechanic: "The car needs? ... cleaned." (3)

Footnotes:
(1) The separate pieces of notebook paper could have landed on a bench in a semi-haphazard arrangement. As the mechanic and his team
fixes up one problem after another a symbolic clean up is occurring.
(2) As a problem relating to dirt is mentioned last this may prompt
the mechanic to use the word - clean.
(3) At this point the word "clean" is still percolating in the mechanics mind and he is cognizant of the symbolic clean up.