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Chris -- 2018-04-11

#1 2020-04-08 10:23:57

From: Mexico
Registered: 2007-10-11
Posts: 2433

lies prey on

My brain rather spectacularly mis-took a headline I read today.

REP. DAN CRENSHAW: China’s coronavirus lies prey on US divisions — how to fight their propaganda

I immediately got the picture of the coronavirus lying in wait to prey on US military units. I immediately categorized “lie prey on” as a potentially new and distinctly odd phrasal verb. It took probably a dozen seconds or more for me to parse it as I think it was intended: their lies about the coronavirus are taking advantage of/feeding on/exacerbating the political (or other) divisions within US society.
It is likely relevant that this was the last of four bunched headlines indicating that Crenshaw had been (as is his wont, to some degree) expressing rather bellicose opinions, some on military matters, in the same interview:

Crenshaw rips Clinton for latest shot at Trump over virus response

Crenshaw: Ousted USS Theodore Roosevelt captain ‘should know better’

REP. DAN CRENSHAW: Coronavirus – We can only fight this enemy together. That’s why duty is crucial

*If the human mind were simple enough for us to understand,
we would be too simple-minded to understand it* .

(Possible Corollary: it is, and we are .)



#2 2020-06-23 16:13:37

From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2007-08-28
Posts: 2761

Re: lies prey on

Is is almost impossible for writers to catch their own garden path sentences.

Hatching new language, one eggcorn at a time.



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