Concordia University School of Law, Faculty Scholarship

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Here’s a good laugh: Lori walks into the kitchen and says to Greg, “Make me a sandwich.” Greg waives his hands wildly and replies, “Poof! You’re a sandwich.” I know you all love a good grammar joke as much as I do. That one’s worth at least a chuckle, right? But, don’t you wonder what makes that funny? And don’t you wonder if the correct phrasing should be “Please make a sandwich for me”? The answer lies, of course, in grammar. To understand whether “Make me a sandwich” is a correct way to ask someone to prepare a sandwich, you need to understand a little more about verbs, objects, and object complements. [excerpt]