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I said all shoes are for walking in.

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Couch Tomato, Mar 9, 2013.

  1. Couch Tomato

    Couch Tomato Senior Member

    Russian & Dutch
    Richard bought me some walking shoes today ready for our walk up to Machu Picchu. I said all shoes are for walking in.
    (An Idiot Abroad: The Travel Diaries of Karl Pilkington – Karl Pilkinton)

    I know very well that you can end sentences with a preposition, but here it seems awkward and redundant to me, similar to "Where are you at?".

    Does anyone agree or is this sentence perfectly fine?

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    I tend to agree, but I wouldn't make a case about it.
     
  3. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    I tend to disagree: dogs are for walking, shoes are for walking in:)

    I do agree with Cyber that it's a rather small matter, though:thumbsup:
     
  4. suzi br

    suzi br Senior Member

    Stoke on Trent
    England and English
    I don't think it is redundant.
     
  5. Giorgio Spizzi Senior Member

    Italian
    Nancy Sinatra, the Voice's daughter, was no academic linguist but she used to sing "These boots are made for walking Ø"
    Hullo, ewie, the idea of walking a shoe/boot strikes me as extremely original :)

    GS
     
  6. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    Hullo GS. I must've heard These boots are made for walkin' at least 112 times but I don't think I've ever thought "Oh what a dreadful solecism!":) (though I have thought "Oh what a dreadful song!":D)
     
  7. djmc Senior Member

    France
    English - United Kingdom
    Anyone who has ever seen much less walked in some of the fashionable women's shoes will know that not all shoes are designed for walking in. It is very common for prepositions to be at the end of a sentence. Most writers who try to prescribe English style (Fowler, Partridge) say that this sort of usage is very charactaristic of English. I may be able to walk (with difficulty and slowly) in shoes made by the likes of Jimmy Choo or Manolo, but their shoes are not designed for walking in.
     
  8. slovac Senior Member

    Could you advise me please?
    Is a following contruction correct: Police bike is used to catch criminals on.
    Explanation: Policemen are sitting (or could be) on a bike while catching(trying to) a dangerous fast criminal.
    Thank you.
     
  9. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    No. This would mean that the criminals were on the "police bike."

    And when one is "sitting on" and powering a moving bicycle one is "riding" it. You'd have to say something like "a police bike is used for apprehending criminals."
     
  10. slovac Senior Member

    Thank you.Can I ask, will the meaing be changed in this case:

    "a police bike is used to apprehend criminals."

    Thank you
     
  11. suzi br

    suzi br Senior Member

    Stoke on Trent
    England and English
    I don't really agree with cyber pedant. Divorced from any other context I find this sentence odd. It sounds as though the bike is instrumental in the apprehension, in the way a trap or a type of research is used to catch criminals.

    On the other hand I DO agree with cyberpedant that your suggestion of tagging the preposition on the end "to catch criminals on" is not successful.
     
  12. wandle

    wandle Senior Member

    London
    English - British
    Shoes are made for walking in, pavements are made for walking on, cars are made for driving in and roads are made for driving on.
    We also say that shoes are made for walking and cars are made for driving; we can even say that pavements are made for walking and that roads are made for driving.

    The inclusion of the preposition makes the meaning more specific: its omission makes the meaning more general.
    The difference is not very great.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2013
  13. Couch Tomato

    Couch Tomato Senior Member

    Russian & Dutch
    Thank you for your responses. The more I read the sentence, the less I understand why it bothered me in the first place.
     
  14. wandle

    wandle Senior Member

    London
    English - British
    It is simply a small joke. 'Walking shoes' means shoes intended to be strong enough for long walks over potentially rough ground. Not all shoes are walking shoes in that sense. However, all shoes are for walking in, because it is true to say that that is the intended category of use.
     
  15. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    • I said all shoes are for walking in.
    • A police bike is used to catch criminals on.
    • The new Tesco centre is a good place for shopping at.
    and the line from Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die" -
    • "In this crazy world in which we live in"
    etc. are all very common in the dialect of the Midlands and North of England

    Yet there is method in this madness:

    "I said all shoes are for walking in" You walk in shoes, so shoes are for walking in
    "A police bike is used to catch criminals on." You catch criminals when you are on a bike, therefore bikes are to catch criminals on
    "The new Tesco centre is a good place for shopping at." You shop at the centre therefore the centre is for shopping at

    It is the creation of separable verbs.
     
  16. slovac Senior Member

    Thanks for answers.
     

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