I’m sure you’ve all heard the phrase “CLEAN ALL THE THINGS!” from one of the great blog posts of the Internet, by Allie Brosh.
But recently, I have come across some even funnier uses of “the” + plural.
For example, “on the Interwebs.”
Dave Rubin says this all the time. Why? I don’t know. It makes him sound like a savvy, spiffy, suspender-clad octogenarian who is learning to use the Internet because he’s sharp as heck but doesn’t yet know what to call it. Dave Rubin is a commentator whose entire job is “on the Interwebs.” He’s mid-40s, my age. What is he trying to say with this? “Look, I know what I’m doing, but I’m too old to keep up with the terminology the kids are using these days”? Whatever he means to communicate by it, I think it gives him a fun, retro vibe.
And just this week, Ben Shapiro said the following: “Usually when you go camping, the purpose is to enjoy the natures.”
The Natures. This made my week.
But why? Is this some linguistic trend that I haven’t been informed of? It strikes me as a way to sound self-deprecating, but I honestly don’t know.
Have the blog readers heard any other examples of this construction?