And you said you was a chess champion

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Ptak, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. Ptak Senior Member

    Moskau
    Rußland
    I'm playing chess with someone and I'm doing checkmate to him. After that I want to say:

    "And you said you was (a?) chess champion of the university!"
    (the sense of the sentence - to tease him)

    Can someone please correct my variant or give me another correct variant that would sound natural as much as possible?

    Thank you.
     
  2. bibliolept

    bibliolept Senior Member

    Northern California
    AE, Español
    Correct and idiomatic: "And you said/claimed that you were a chess champion in college" or "that you were the chess champion of your university."

    Personally, I prefer to be a gracious victor; "trash talk" isn't my métier.
     
  3. Spagbol Member

    London
    England, English (UK)
    Please correct me if I am wrong but I thought this should be "And you said you were a chess champion". I was, he/she/it was, you were, we were, they were.
     
  4. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    It certainly should be were, spagbol.

    And you said you were the university chess champion
    And you said you were university chess champion
    And you said you were a chess champion
    And you said you were a champion chess player
    And you said you were chess champion of the university

    These are all fine, although I think the last one is a bit wordy.
     
  5. Ptak Senior Member

    Moskau
    Rußland
    Many thanks!
     
  6. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    If your opponent is sensitive to the vagaries of English, your original statement: "you said you was a chess champion...." would turn out to be a most clever put-down.
     
  7. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    How so, cyberpedant? I don't get it.
     
  8. bibliolept

    bibliolept Senior Member

    Northern California
    AE, Español
    If the defeated opponent is a stickler for language, then the purposeful incorrect use of "was" would be additionally galling or irritating.
     
  9. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    Aha. Thanks, bibliolept.
     

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