[Ads-l] Heard: "thats" < _whose_

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Fri Nov 3 00:34:18 EDT 2017


On Thu, Nov 2, 2017 at 11:48 PM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 'Monsters Inside Me,' the narrator speaks:
>
> "The source of the rash is diagnosed as poison oak, a plant _thats_ leaves
> can cause an allergic reaction."
>
> The rash was, in fact, a symptom of schistosomiasis.
>
> Youneverknow.
>

Reminiscent of a similar example Wilson brought to our attention back in
2011: "I've a 24" 2.4Ghz iMac _that's_ hard drive recently packed in."

http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/ads-l/2011-February/thread.html#106816


That thread inspired Neal Whitman to write about "that's" in this piece for
the Visual Thesaurus:

https://www.visualthesaurus.com/cm/dictionary/gear-up-for-national-grammar-day/

James Harbeck in turn picked up on this, writing about apostrophe-less
"thats" used as a relative possessive pronoun.

https://theweek.com/articles/441268/future-english-includes-apostropheless-thats

--bgz

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