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[Lingo] 遅過ぎる

s smith writes:

 > is going on here?  Is this 「遅い」 minus the 「い」 + 「すぎる」 or 
 > what?


 > Is there a pattern here for い adjectives or is this just a 
 > special case?

Yes and no.  In fact, there's a more general pattern.  Verboids (verbs
and adjectives) in Japanese have a combining form, and helper verbs
like -すぎる are appended to that.  遅い -> 遅 + すぎる -> 遅すぎる.
寝る -> 寝 + すぎる -> 寝すぎる.  する -> し + すぎる -> しすぎる.

For verbs the combining form is the stem to which you add -ます forms.

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