A speaker is like a lousy auto mechanic: Every time he fixes something in the language, he screws up something else.
The ultimate goal is a comprehensive classification of what is very likely a single language family. The implications of such a classification for the origin and history of our species would, of course, be very great.
I heard Yiddish when my father's family came to the house, which was as seldom as my mother could arrange it.
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