Ciro has informed me that several linguists think the “s” ending in the third person singular is on the way out, because it adds complication without additional clarification. (I read. You read. We read. They read. He reads – what is that s doing there?) You can drop it without losing any meaning. It’s vestigal, and will wither away as the English language continues to evolve.
I should never have been trusted with this knowledge.
I am extremely tempted to drop the s in all my writing and speaking henceforth, which would make me seem stupid (or foreign) to more conservative contemporary readers – but infinitely more readable in THE FUTURE.
We really don’t need it, and haven’t for ages. I mean, listen.
Nic says: Don’t you want someone to read your writing one day and be charmed by the antiquated way your ideas are expressed? like seeing ‘f’s for ‘s’s in the Bill of Rights
Romie: Am now considering doing a verbal s-f substitute to really mess with people. She runf, he walkf, she singf.
Nic: Also I’ve just realised “Bill of Rights” is a genius name for a 90s sitcom about someone called Bill who is always fighting for his rights or something…
Rex: That’s Bill Wright of the Inalienable Wrights.
Rebecca says: Alternatively, you could leave off the s and invent an accent for the preceeding consonant and really piss off everyone. They would have to learn it, and have to reprogram all the keyboards. I read, they read, she reađ. She walķ, he kniţ, she throw×, he barf*. For the vowels the French already have an accent for missing s’s: she writê.
Maria says: What may be the blind side is the adaptation of a popular lisp, for which the errant s will be reallocated into any combination of syllables, with or without subtext.