"I says"

Tom Kysilko pds at VISI.COM
Thu Apr 4 19:44:04 UTC 2002

Not data, but a suggestive example.  My father only uses "I says" when
recounting his WWII experiences.  On one occasion I heard him in a
conversation with old army buddies, and they all spoke that way.  All
stories were told using the narrative present.  And third-person verb forms
followed "I" in most cases:

"Well I gets real p*ssed off; so I goes up the lieutenant, and I says . . ."

 --Tom Kysilko

Benjamin Fortson writes:
> "I says" is extremely common at least in the Northeast US, in my
> experience. "So I says to him, I says..." is practically formulaic, and
> has (to my ears) a working-class feel.
>         Maybe someone else has data on its distribution.
> Ben

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