Interesting. Definitely useful for learners, especially the last paragraph where 'ganz' definitely has a dismissive tinge. I've read other places that, for instance, 'ganz gut' is often pretty lukewarm, which is not necessarily what you would expect translating it literally.
As for his point about 'ganz,' isn't that similar to an issue raised in this thread today? related discussion:a whole five days
I wasn't sure I had really understood weißnix's point there either. Or rather, the idea that it could be negative or represent an upper limit was new to me, and Sick's example with only three miners being saved ('Ganze drei Bergarbeiter') is completely unfamiliar to me as well.
I wondered if the distinction he makes about the dentist appointment might be in English 'the full three hours' vs. 'a whole three hours.' But it's definitely true that 'gut drei Stunden = a good three hours,' and he says that's like 'volle,' not like 'ganze.' So would it be
volle drei Stunden = a whole three hours
ganze drei Stunden = ???
??? = the full three hours
The thing is, 'a whole' and 'the full' both mean 'not less than,' but 'a whole' just means generally that it was a surprisingly or unusually long time (without any preconception about exactly how long it was supposed to take), and 'the full' means specifically that they used up the entire three hours that had been scheduled for the procedure. But maybe that's more a difference between 'a' and 'the' than between 'full' and 'whole.' Drat, now I'm more confused.
Thanks for the link in any case. The one about the boss at the office party made me think Mr. Sick may have been watching 'The Office.' (-;