5.29.2011

Typical plural mistake - documented!


This is a typical mistake: using an apostrophe to create a plural form. Why do so many people do this? And it's a business--you'd think they'd proofread their sign before putting it up for all the world to see. And the team is called "Cubs", not "Cub". Bottom line: this is lame, especially because it's on a public sign on a major street in a major city.

6 comments:

Brigid Daull Brockway said...

There's a restaurant near me that has a similar error. Not only that, but they make it inconsistently: sandwiches, salads, and wrap's. Augh! I've considered peeling the apostrophe off the window. I'm not sure whether its graffiti if you're fixing something so it's no longer wrong.

mj said...

I don't know when the whole apostrophe thing started, but it seems to have multiplied in the 21st century.

Heather said...

While I agree on the apostrophe misuse, they have the singular form of Cubs correctly. When a plural form is used as an adjective, the plural is typically dropped.
Examples: six-inch sub (not six inches sub)
ten-foot pole (not ten-feet)
six-year old girl

You get the picture. So it's very natural to call the fans "Cub fans".

mj said...

The explanation makes sense, but the team is called the Chicago Cubs.

Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

So the sign should say WELCOME CUBS FANS! Yes? And the multiplicative effect to which you are referring exists because grammar is no longer taught in public schools...at least in California and punctuation is part of grammar; well at least when I was a kid the subjects were taught together. And this is from a person who always hated grammar but boy oh boy do I wish it was still taught in our schools!!! Another reason for the effect is the growth of English as second language learners. Their 'oral aesthetic' is far different from a native English speaker so they are prone to make specific errors. With many Asian students the plurals are confused, Mexican students tend to confuse much with more and Black students tend to say ax instead of ask et cetera et cetera et cetera.

BUT Metrolingua, I'm sure you'd like visiting my town where many whites are originally from the rural Midwest. We have the Fresno accent which says college like 'COLEEGE' heheheheh

mj said...

What's ironic is that ESL requires grammatical knowledge, but they're not teaching it in schools as much to native speakers. People need to know the rules in order to break them, but then again, English often doesn't have consistent rules (as is discussed in Bill Bryson's The Mother Tongue).