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Sorry but I really feel the need to stomp on this -
In what universe is "twenty years has taught me" correct? In that
universe, the following are also correct:
"Mine eyes has seen the glory... "
"Many hands makes light work."
If one said "twenty years' experience has taught me" then ok, one would
have a plausible case. But that wasn't what was said.
Feel free to stomp back if I've missed something -
From: techwr-l-bounces+dhandy=informatica -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+dhandy=informatica -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
Behalf Of Janet Littell
Sent: 09 July 2009 17:23
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Re: job-hunt weirdness (Gene Kim-Eng)
I wonder if Michael's original remark was based on both meanings below.
If so, either "has" or "have" could do the job.
> From: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
> Subject: Re: job-hunt weirdness
> My impression of this "tedious argument" is that Michael is not the
> one who started it.
> Collective nouns are one of the major hair-pullers of the English
> They may be either singular or plural, depending on what message the
> user intends to deliver. My interpretation of Michael's "years have"
> was that he had learned a lesson from repeated observations of other
> peoples' poor use of grammar over a period of years, while your
> preferred "years has"
> would have
> suggested to me that he had spent those years continuously studying
> the subject before coming to his conclusion. Perhaps Michael can tell
> us which he intended.
> For my part, I would rather spend an evening listening to Norm Crosby
> recordings than try to correct someone else's usage of a collective
> noun without a stack of academic references in my hand.
> Gene Kim-Eng
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