I'm new on this site and want to ask for your help with english learning. I read an article which said "a man is the owner of I Sold in Cash Provision Store." Does it mean that if you want to buy something in his store,you have to pay by ready money? And then here is another sentence: Rotate Provision and Fancy Store was everything Cash Provision Store wasn’t. I want to know if "everything" here means the former store has more things to sell than the latter one? Thanks in advance.

closed as off-topic by FumbleFingers, tchrist, Drew, Chenmunka, Centaurus Apr 6 '15 at 23:55

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  • The capital letters indicate that "I Sold in Cash Provision Store" is the name of the store. For all we know it could be a coffee shop or a disco. – Hot Licks Apr 4 '15 at 12:21
  • @april2013 The story where you found these sentences tells you everything you want to know. Both stores sell provisions to the local village. In addition to provisions, Rotate's (that's his nickname) store sells what he calls "fancy goods", like baby clothes. Rotate's store sells in both cash and credit, but Cash's sells only in cash, which is why that's his nickname, and why he named his store "I Sold in Cash". Both store names reflect a unique regional variety of English grammar. – Dan Bron Apr 4 '15 at 12:43
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's asking about the meaning/syntax of a proper noun. – FumbleFingers Apr 4 '15 at 12:55
  • Look here why: britishmuseum.org/system_pages/beta_collection_introduction/… (The British Museum, © Trustees of the British Museum) – Kris Apr 4 '15 at 13:46
  • @FumbleFingers Not of a proper noun, but of an idiomatic expression with great history and still very popular. – Kris Apr 4 '15 at 13:47

The "I Sold in Cash" in the name of a store is odd. First of all, the past tense sold implies that he used to sell, but now he doesn't. Secondly, one does not sell "in cash"—the seller "sells [x] for cash" and the buyer "buys [x] for cash". And the buyer in such a transaction pays cash or pays in cash".

But even with those usage errors, it is still clear that this shop sells goods for cash.



1 Rotate Provision and Fancy Store

makes no sense; at best, it is highly ambiguous. *

Normally, one would read "rotate" as a verb. Then one wonders whether "fancy" is also to be taken as a verb.

Somebody rotates his provisions and fancies his store? Possible, but odd for a store name!

But then I notice it says "provision", not "provisions". And of course you can't rotate ONE provision (in fact, as a noun meaning goods, it is uncountable— it is what is known as a plurale tantum). But maybe (I think to myself) that was a transcription error, and the sign really said "provisions".

2 Rotate Provisions and Fancy Store

But "rotate" still makes no sense. and "fancy store" seems more like adjective+noun. And maybe "provision" was rendered as singular on purpose, to signify the act or practice of provisioning. Maybe "rotate" should be taken as "rotating". So maybe it's a fancy store that serves the purpose of provisioning (supplying), and which has stock of provisions that is "rotating" (that is, at different times—perhaps seasonally—different items are stocked.) This could be expressed as:

3 Fancy Rotating-Provision Store

(not "Fancy Rotating Provision Store", as that would mean that the store itself rotates like a carousel, perhaps? Now that would really be fancy!)

Alas, none of these interpretations so far seems plausible, so the native AmE speaker (I) must keep trying to make sense of it, especially because of the and In "and fancy store" Hmmmm... what to make of it? The and must be there for SOME reason. . .

Aha! Maybe "fancy" is meant as a noun. A fancy item. One fancy, two fancies. In that case, the and connects two nouns rather than _ two verbs ! Perhaps the shop sells "provisions" (meaning essential staples) AND "fancies" (whatever they might be; maybe trinkets, geegaws, kickshaws—that is, non-essential items)

Okay, so the store rotates its "provisions", and also sells "fancies". (apparently it rotates the "fancies" as well, but I'm not sure.) Assuming it does rotate both, I now parse the shop name as meaning

4 Rotating [stock] Provisions and Fancies Store

Still, it doesn't seem likely that a store would emphasize the rotating nature of its goods (every store, to some degree, varies its offerings from time to time.)

Then, I remember that you contrasted this shop with another shop that sells (or rather, "sold") for cash. So maybe, I theorize, THIS shop offers credit (financing, layaway or installment payments ). That is, it sells goods on account. In that case, if a customer had a credit account with the shop, he could buy something, start paying on it, and buy more things, all on the same "account".

Aha! That is called revolving credit! perhaps, rather than "rotating" their stock (though they probably do that as well) the shop owners offer revolving credit! Perhaps the shop owners confused "revolving" with "rotating" ! If so, maybe the shop SELLS "provisions and fancies", but FINANCES customer purchases with revolving credit? That might make sense. So how would we express, in actual English, these two aspects of the shop's operations? I could imagine, for instance...

5 Provisions and Fancies Store — Revolving Credit {Offered/Available}

(I see many used-car lots in LA that emphasize their "easy" financing, on their signs, in such a fashion: Autos — ¡CRÉDITO FÁCIL!)

Not bad. But just to be sure, I try another angle: maybe the store owners have two operations in the same shop—a provisions operation, in which they offer revolving credit, and a "fancy store" where they do not. No, (I think) it seems more likely the other way around, especially if the "provisions" are daily commodities like groceries, and some or all of the "fancies" are expensive (maybe jewelry?) So I reject this dual-operations theory and go with interpretation #5.

That's a lot of mental wrangling to expect of a native English speaker (especially a tourist walking by quickly, who would glance at the sign once, think "what gibberish!, and walk right past the shop.)


  * I see from a comment that Rotate seems to the store-owner's nickname. If so, there should be a possessive apostrophe:  **Rotate's** Provision..."  That's a strange nickname. If it has to do with his business practices, "Revolving" sounds more apt.  Better yet, something like "Easy-Credit Joe" !
  • thanks for your great help guy! As a native AmE speaker you've really done well to make sense of it. I really appreciate your warmhearted help!!! –  april2013 Apr 5 '15 at 7:53
  • @ Brian Hitchcock The and must be there for SOME reason. .yea, you so careful. I guess "and" here is a highlight that the owner, actually Rotate is the owner by his nickname, emphasizes his goods are better than another one , "I sold in cash" –  april2013 Apr 5 '15 at 8:01
  • How does "and" indicate "better"? I don't get that. Also, do you know if any one of my guesses was correct? – Brian Hitchcock Apr 5 '15 at 8:10
  • not indicate, but a little potential. your guesses are whole and correct by grammar, I can learn from all of your interpretation to improve my english. It's my fault not to post more context to let you guess all the way :D –  april2013 Apr 5 '15 at 8:46
  • @ Brian Hitchcock Btw, whodoneit downvoting thing? I want to vote up but less 15 reputation. I'll upvote you after I win 15. wait –  april2013 Apr 5 '15 at 8:48

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