Where’s the S go?
The only instances where I’ve heard the S placed upon the first word seem to be abbreviations or titles; runs batted in (RBI), yards after the catch (YAC), sisters-in-law, attorneys general, secretaries of state, the Brothers Grimm (Grunt).
Is this the proper S placement as a rule? Are there exceptions?
I’ve watched sports my entire life, and I’ve never heard anyone say times out, or touches down, or even thirds-and-long. What about free throws? Frees thrown seems okay in past tense, but what if it’s active? Can the free in free throw be plural?
I’m lost here.
You are 100%correct, Justin in your first statement.
A rule of thumb with our beautiful Native tongue (American English) is that there are always "exceptions" and these are the things we must LEARN in order to know.....on an as-needed basis, if you get my gist.
The easiest (and most correct) thing to keep in mind is that the SUBJECT of the term or phrase is what is singular or plural....eg, time outs....you're referring to OUTS, the subject.....Time merely describes (adjective) the OUT/S.....same with touch downs and free throws.
Frees thrown may "seem" OK in past tense, but if you analyze this, it's just not OK. ( frees are not what's thrown......Throws are described as FREE (throws.) In this case, one would need to construct their entire sentence to use the proper grammar. Since I don't know how or when you might use this verbiage, I can't give an example.
Basically, you're not lost. At least you're not as lost as you may have thought. I sure hope I didn't confuse you.
Your answer is exactly right-- it relates to the subject. I know someone who refers to some groups of people as "son of a b**ches". It is more correct to say "sons of b**ches" , but had second thoughts about trying to correct grammar at the moment.
Oh Rochelle, Thanks for the confirmation! I use THAT expression a whole lot! LOL
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