I'd be surprised if there winds up being a split at all.

alexB2

Member
Russian
Hello everybody, it’s from the 1st season’s Brian Finch's Black Op episode of American TV series Limitless. Here’s a rough layout of what’s going on:
There are two bad guys delivering a third guy named Basayev to some other bad people to gather a bounty of $10 million. There’s also Brian who has been forced to help them find Basayev and who is turned liability, now that the bounty hunters got what they wanted. To get himself out of this pickle he plans on turning his captors against each other. This is him talking to one of them:
Quick question. Does your buddy over there really strike you as a fifty-fifty split type of guy? You said Basayev's worth $10 million to someone. I'm guessing you guys are doing some kind of split. But if I know my quiet, psycho, in-desperate-need-of-a-hug mercenary types (the second bad one doesn’t talk too much and to the naked eye seems timid), I'd be surprised if there winds up being a split at all.

So, this highlighted structure, does it strike you as unusual or even incorrect maybe? It would seem OK to me without being. What would you say?
 
  • velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I've never come across the impersonal "there winds up..." before, so it sounds odd to me.

    I know it as in "He wound up in prison; she wound up with ten kids", where a person ends up in a situation that is usually, but not always, unpleasant.

    I'd be surprised if there ends up being a split...sounds good okay to me.
     

    alexB2

    Member
    Russian
    It’s not the phrasal verb that worries me here, it’s the grammar, if any, that justifies being in this sentence.
    And what Edinburgher says: "Moreover, if you were simply to omit the word being, it would, er, wind up wrong." baffles me even more

    I wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up being in prison.
    I’d be surprised if he doesn’t end up being sick with no money in his pockets
    .

    There’s no problem with those beings, I guess.
    If I were to substitute be or come for wind up in that sentence, would the meaning remain the same or practically the same at least? Skip what’s in the brackets for now.
    I'd be surprised if there’ll be (being) a split at all.
    I'd be surprised if there comes (being) a split at all.


    If yes, do you think changing the sentences slightly as shown in the brackets would ruin their grammar and make them gibberish?
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up being in prison.
    I’d be surprised if he doesn’t end up being sick with no money in his pockets
    .

    It is wrong to include "being" unless this is a passive: "He wound up being robbed of all his money."
     

    Dunno123

    Senior Member
    Slovak
    I have a question to this topic too, if I may.

    Doesn't "wind up being something/somewhere" always have a negative connotation? Meaning that it ends up in a bad situation? The split of the money is the positive scenario, it is expected and hoped for, wouldn't it be better to use another verb?
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Doesn't "wind up being something/somewhere" always have a negative connotation?
    I'm not sure. You may be right. But here the good guy is warning one of the bad guys (B1) that he might not get any of the loot, because the other bad guy (B2) looks as though he wants to keep it all.
    The split may be a positive scenario, but the warning is about the negative scenario of the split not happening, or worse that B2 might end up killing B1.
    The real meaning of "I'd be surprised if there is going to be a split" is "It wouldn't surprise me to find (in other words: I strongly suspect) that there is not going to be a split."
     

    alexB2

    Member
    Russian
    It is wrong to include "being" unless this is a passive: "He wound up being robbed of all his money."
    Yet at the same time you say that:
    I'd be surprised if there ends up being a split...sounds good okay to me.
    where there seems to be no passive.

    And Edinburgher, like Parla, you don’t see anything wrong with the sentence but none the less quite unconsciously maybe you modified it into what was apparently more to your liking:
    "I'd be surprised if there is going to be a split."
    Anyway, thank you. You folks don’t appear to be talkative for some reason. Was I impolite or something?
     

    Truffula

    Senior Member
    English - USA
    I can give it a try: "I'd be surprised if" - means the (rest of the sentence) is something the speaker thinks unlikely
    "there winds up being" - a slang form of "there is" (The word "there" followed by some conjugation of "to be" is a construct in English used to make a statement out of a noun phrase) with "winds up" is an adverbial phrase meaning "eventually" or "in the end."

    So he's saying the equivalent of:

    I think it unlikely that there eventually is a split

    or

    Probably there won't be a split in the end

    Each type of adverbial phrase requires a different verb form of "to be," but you can't leave it out entirely. Whether as "being," "is," or "will be," the verb is needed.
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    And Edinburgher, like Parla, you don’t see anything wrong with the sentence but none the less quite unconsciously maybe you modified it into what was apparently more to your liking:
    Certainly not unconsciously, and not even subconsciously either. In my case, I just don't like "winds up" at all. "Ends up" I find tolerable, but I still prefer to avoid it when there's a better option.
    I wonder whether veli thought that 'being' without passive is more wrong with "winds up" than it is with "ends up". She is clearly not enthusiastic about if there ends up being a split because she changed 'good' to 'okay' (which is to be understood as passable, i.e. less good than 'good').
    You folks don’t appear to be talkative for some reason. Was I impolite or something?
    No. :) Sorry about the non-talkative (even monosyllabic) answer. We don't always have time to hang around here and chat all day. Occasionally real life makes demands on our attention too.
     
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