Thursday, December 11, 2008

-able1, -able2, or ... CRAZY -ABLE???

A relative sent us some fruit as a gift, and on the packing crate it says,
Enterable in citrus producing states with USDA authorization stamp.
Hmmm. Does this mean the fruit is able to be entered in such states? i.e. that someone could enter it in such states? I mean, that someone could enter the state and bring the fruit along? And then who has to have the authorization stamp? The fruit? The someone? The state?

Too much for my feeble brain to process.

5 comments:

N said...

I think the balking comes from seeing it written as opposed to just hearing it.


Can you enter this name into the form?

Yeah, it's enterable.

John Cowan said...

Yes, "enterable" means that the fruit is certified safe for import into California, Florida, etc. The stamp would be on the crate.

The Ridger, FCD said...

Right - "enter" has a transitive use, too. We just don't think of it often, I suppose. But fruit not being animate, it's hard for it to enter... hmmm, my "transitive" above is wrong. I think. What word do I want? "The fruit entered Florida from Brazil" ... is that transitive? Why can't I think? Need coffee!

Monica said...

Ah, but the fruit has to be the undergoer of the action... For a beverage to be tasteable (sp???) someone has to taste it. So for the fruit to be enterable, someone has to enter it. Let's all go get our Aronoff out and review what we know about -able...

The Ridger, FCD said...

Well, sure. Importers enter the fruit into the citrus-producing states.