Monday, October 27, 2008

Wonderings and Googlings (Wherein I wonder about words, then I Google them)

There are some things = 7.19 million hits
There's some things = 711,000 hits
There're some things = 4,110 hits

I had no idea "there're" was used in writing at all. I searched that one on a lark.

"There's some things," however, I did not search on a lark.

The use of the contraction "there's" before a plural is so common it's now accepted by some experts. But it's one of the few things that kind of peeves me. I was taught "there are" for plural, "there is" or "there's" for singular. So my stomach hasn't quite caught up with my head on this one.

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Joel said...

I use "there're" probably more than I should admit.

Let's just be clear, though: "there's some things" is the kind of crap that almost inspires me to be a grammar snob. Makes me want to go nuke-u-lar on their asses.

I think of other things that are "accepted" and I'm okay with my rejecting this one too.

June Casagrande said...

Me, too. "There's some things" is one of the few usages that cause me to face that fact that my inner grammar snob has not been slain -- she's just slumbering.

Re "there're," it's 1. true to how many of pronounce "there are" and 2. at least an attempt to follow the rule I was taught. (Why can't everyone follow the rules I was taught? You know, rules like "If you must drive an SUV, always stay BEHIND June as she does not appreciate your blocking her view of traffic." That and "Thou shalt not be a sucker for all things marked 'fat-free.'"

Yes, I'm smuggling around a really, really annoying person. I guess that's part of why I had to stop drinking. Not a good idea to let the guard down around her.

AdamH said...

For what it's worth, which is probably exactly nothing, I always change there's to there're when appropriate.

June Casagrande said...

Do you mean when reporting or copy editing? That's the beauty of those jobs. Sometimes there's some gray area, for example in pronunciation, in which you can make the (better) call for the speaker or writer.

I wonder what the future is for "there're." I bet it's fading in the shadow of the universal "there's."

Joel said...

"There're" has the added beauty of repeating itself at the end (and kinda makes me want to keep going: "'re're're're . . .")--which probably further prejudices the masses against it.

I love you, "there're." I'll fight for you.

June Casagrande said...

That reminds me of a "Simpsons" episode (most things in life do) where a class of gifted students is asked to solve an equation whose answer is RDRR. "Har-dee-har-har."

(It worked better when the teacher said it.)


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