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April 05, 2007

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The fewer/less distinction isn't sloppy grammar; "less" in such a context has a lot of history (like, all of it) on its side:

http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/003775.html

People might not _like_ using "less" when they prefer "fewer," but there's nothing in the history of English to suggest that there's a firm basis for this distinction. Sure, it's a class marker, etc., but sloppy grammar it ain't. If one wants to reason it through, here are some points to ponder:

http://www.economist.com/blogs/theinbox/2007/03/less_or_fewer.cfm

http://tenser.typepad.com/tenser_said_the_tensor/2005/03/one_fewer_wheel.html

I, too, love Piedmont Grocery's sign (and concern). I did notice that they erred in their from/to description -- "from 8am-5pm."

Evvance--Yes, I noticed that little error, too, as well as several others. (The syntax on the sentence that begins "Much like..." doesn't really parse.) But I chose to overlook the infractions and applaud the intentions.

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