Another Contest! Meaning of "Now I are one"?

Okay, here’s another problem for you folks to solve.

The sentence, “Now I are one!” is obviously in very bad grammar. However, many Americans who are very well educated and usually speak with perfect grammar may sometimes say this. Why do they say it, and what do they mean by it?

And a similar one: The past participle of think is thought. However, the same well-educated Americans who have perfect grammar will often exclaim, “Who would have thunk it?!” Why do they use bad grammar in this sentence, and what do they mean by it?

Once again, the winner will win the distinction of being the winner.

I give up! Or, as said in French ‘I give my tongue to the cat’ (which obviously doesn’t mean ‘the cat got your tongue’).

I’ll wait a while to see if anyone takes a crack at this problem, and then I’ll reveal the answer.

I think Now I are one means something like I would never have thought that I might be able to do this someday and now I am after all. As for the other question, I have to think about it a bit more :wink: but I guess it falls into the same category as expressions like … I says or I would have went which are bad grammar but good idiomatic English.

Andreana is the winner! Or at least halfway.

The first expression used to be longer. People would say something like, “A few months ago I couldn’t even spell teacher, and now I are one!” It’s expressing amazement that one has become a teacher. It’s saying that a few months ago the person wasn’t even remotely qualified to be a teacher, and now he is a teacher even though he’s still not remotely qualified (because of the bad grammar).

“Now I are one!” is still an expression of general amazement at what one has become. Not long ago an elderly woman said to me, “All my life I made fun of those church ladies, and now I are one!” She meant that she was surprised and amazed that she is now the old lady who takes care of everything in church, because she never liked those ladies and used to joke about them.

If you type “now I are one” (in quotation marks) into Google, you get about 9,000 hits.

Now for the other expression: “Who would have thunk it?” This is what we say when the solution to a problem was very obvious, but no one thought of it. For example, maybe a big truck gets stuck under a freeway bridge. Workers try all day to use various complicated tools and methods to pull it out, when a little boy walks up and says, “Why don’t you just let the air out of the tires?” The kid has suggested the most obvious, easiest, most effective solution, and it’s amazing no one thought of it before. The workers might exclaim, “Let the air out of the tires! Who would have thunk it!” It means something like, “We’re stupid, because we couldn’t even think of the simplest solution!”

If you type “who would have thunk it” into Google, you’ll get more than 2 million examples.

Hello Jamie (K), thank you for your enlightening us on English idioms. Could you please tell us why in the expression Who would have thunk it? the past participle is thunk and not thought? Is thunk used to indicate that the person can not think?

The idea is that if you say thunk instead of think, you must be stupid. When you say, “Who would have thunk it?” it means something like, “I must be stupid, or I would have thought of that!”

Ah, I should have thunk about that :wink:
Thanks for your quick response,

These phrases are generally used in a humorous vein.

The phrase, “Who would have thunk it?” gained notice as a character’s often-repeated statement in the novel, “The Group,” by Mary McCarthy.

Thunk means a flat hollow sound and not the past participle of think.(Which is thought)

In German people use the word “Doch” a lot

Anyone know what the English word for Doch is?