Date: Thu, 18 Jun 1998 08:56:28 -0400
From: Alan Baragona
Subject: Re: plural's - a new development?

Perhaps writers do this because, subconsciously at least, they are unsure of
whether the plural should add -s or -es (especially so with final -o) so
they instinctively "compromise" with an apostrophe.

At 12:52 AM 6/18/98 -0400, Bryan Gick wrote:
>While I'm at it...
>I've been noticing something for the last few months that I can't ignore
>anymore: Lots of people seem to be using the orthographic apostrophe-s
>plural only after (orthographic?) vowels! A text will typically have lots
>and lots of standard -s plurals with one or two -'s ones tossed in. So
>far, all and only those words ending in a, o and i get -'s, and I haven't
>found any final u's or syllabic (non-silent) e's from people who do this.
>Examples - Here's the grand total of -'s plurals I've seen since I started
>noting them (omitting proper nouns, abbreviations and acronyms):
>1. In an insect repellent ad (
> forums/ontbuysell/messages/463.htm):
>-'s: mosquito's (x3), patio's
>-s: bugs, insects, lotions, sprays, humans, animals, waves, decks, doors,
> wholesalers, distributors.
>2. Web page for a renovations company (
>-'s: patio's
>-s: renovations, carports (x2), enclosures (x2), covers, rooms.
>3. Local air service webpage
> (
>-'s: jacuzzi's
>-s: languages, places, amenities, rooms, pilots, floats, adventures,
> years, maps, rafts, canoes, stoves, bags, trips (x3), rates.
>4. Personal email from a 13-year-old family member:
>-'s: extra's
>-s: guys (x2), rides
>5. Department store poster ad (women's "Sunsations" bathing suits):
>-'s: bra's
>-s: contours, ruffles, colors, prints, stripes...[there were more but I
> stopped transcribing].
>So, am I losing my mind?