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"Pissed off for" Options
Taxiarchis
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 3:35:35 PM

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Hi,

I'd like to know if this sentence is appropriately structured:

He was pissed off with those kids for one time writing insults at him all over the wall.

Mainly, I wish to know if the syntax of "pissed off with [person B] for [person B's actions]" is correct. I've looked around on the Internet and most collocations regarding pissed off involve the usage of "about sth." or "because [dependent clause explaining the reason]".


Thanks in advance
Romany
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 4:12:09 PM
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Yes - you've used the phrase correctly: one can be pissed off with...your mother, your boss, a shop assistant. It's perfectly valid - at least in BE.

However the sentence still needs a bit of tweaking: things aren't done 'one time', bu.t 'once'. Also, one can't write anything AT a person. One can shout or yell insults AT (in the direction of) someone. But one can't write (in the direction of) someone. One can write insults that are ABOUT him.

"He was pissed of with those kids for once writing insults about him all over the wall." would be better, but most native speakers would, I think, put the time(once) AFTER the action (writing insults about him". e.g. "... for writing insults about him once, all over the wall."

By the way - "those kids" have been referred to in a previous sentence, haven't they? Otherwise, if it's just a made-up sentence on its own, it would be "the' kids.
NKM
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 4:17:28 PM

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Romany is right in her analysis and advice.

I might add that (in American English) I'd be more likely to say "pissed of at" than "pissed off with" the kids.
Taxiarchis
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 7:06:28 PM

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The sentence is indeed from a larger text I've been working, and its curious the matter regarding the differences between British and American English is brought up, since I had initially considered making the narrative voice persona speak in BE to match the characters - in one of the settings, at least. I had decided against it, however, and have the narrator persona fall in a more neutral area and let the characters "do the talking", so to say. So I guess in the end I wound up employing a British dialect unknowingly. Heh.

Also, thanks for bringing up the 'write AT' issue, too.

Thanks, everybody.
malgaff
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 7:53:55 PM
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"...but most native speakers would, I think, put the time(once) AFTER the action (writing insults about him". e.g. "... for writing insults about him once, all over the wall."

In speech, perhaps; but not in writing.
Jana90
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 9:42:52 PM
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Location: Prague, Praha, Czech Republic
NKM wrote:
I might add that (in American English) I'd be more likely to say "pissed of at" than "pissed off with" the kids.


A follow-up question, if I may: in AmE, isn't it much more common to say "pissed at sbd" than to say "pissed off at sbd"?
Hope123
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 10:04:14 PM

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Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Jana90 wrote:
NKM wrote:
I might add that (in American English) I'd be more likely to say "pissed of at" than "pissed off with" the kids.


A follow-up question, if I may: in AmE, isn't it much more common to say "pissed at sbd" than to say "pissed off at sbd"?


We would probably say 'at somebody' but we might also use 'with somebody'. We say just 'pissed off' as in 'I was really pissed' or 'I was really pissed off'.

Since you said it is for a character's speech, it would be ok to use it. But it is still frowned upon here as being a bit 'potty- mouthed' to use it except in familiar company and as slang - if you are ever using it on this side of the pond. In other words, don't say it in 'la dee dah' company.
Dreamy
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 10:23:31 PM

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"All this pissing around really pisses me off, and when I am pissed off I tell certain people to piss off, and when they ask why I am so pissed off with them, I tell them to stop taking the piss. Americans get pissed at me which is hilarious because getting pissed means getting drunk in our lingo."

Psssst. Don't tell my wife I wrote all this.
Hope123
Posted: Monday, June 1, 2015 10:48:22 PM

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Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Dreamy wrote:
"All this pissing around really pisses me off, and when I am pissed off I tell certain people to piss off, and when they ask why I am so pissed off with them, I tell them to stop taking the piss. Americans get pissed at me which is hilarious because getting pissed means getting drunk in our lingo."

Psssst. Don't tell my wife I wrote all this.


LOL, Dreamy. We also use it to mean being drunk!

I won't tell your wife, but I bet she wouldn't care anyhow!
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