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darknation

nazi this grammar for me.

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Can't quite figure this one out.

Storm clouds gathered over Blair like drunks around a urinal.


Now, technically this should be "around an urinal". But the 'u' in urinal has the value of 'yoo' (or 'yü' if you want to get ümlauty) and you don't put 'an' in front of 'yoo'. Or maybe you do. I don't know.

Both ways I look at it, the sentence looks broken and incorrect. It is driving me fucking crazy. Someone tell me which version is correct.

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darknation said:

Now, technically this should be "around an urinal". But the 'u' in urinal has the value of 'yoo' (or 'yü' if you want to get ümlauty) and you don't put 'an' in front of 'yoo'. Or maybe you do. I don't know.


Nope, you're correct, 'a' becomes 'an' based on the phonetic sound of the next word and not the actual spelling. So you get "a urinal," but also "an heirloom," and maybe even "an historic event" depending on your regional pronunciation.

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A youtube, a yourinal.

That said, there's always the cheat of adding an adjective that doesn't start with a u. "... like drunks around a clogged urinal" or something.

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I admit to thinking that the sentence could be improved upon, but it seems correct by grammatical means. "A" urinal is indeed the proper sounding grammatic.

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Yeah. Thanks.

Bucket said:

I would put a comma after "Blair"; it breaks up the sentence and makes it easier to digest.

This is about the 17th iteration of this fucking sentence. It is, in context, now completely fucking perfect and absolutely should be left alone in the interest of getting another sentence done this week.

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The sentence seems grammatically fine, but the simile strikes me as a little odd. I take it that the clouds are collectively - as in, all at the same time - gathering over the lone Blair. Do drunks make a habit of gathering around single urinals in this manner?

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If you're anything like me, don't edit anything until you've written it all. You'll second guess yourself forever.

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