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Ottobre 2018
The Speak Up blog answers any questions you may have either about the English language or our articles. Write to us at: http://blog.speakuponline.it. The most interesting questions will be published on this page. A word of warning, though: our blog is not a translation or homework service!

Hi Speak Up!
Could you enlarge on two expressions used by Dan TDM in his first answer of the interview published on page 20 of the August issue?
In particular, what is the difference between “We did it“ and “We made it to eighteen million subscriptions“?
Thank you.

Hi Bruno,
Thanks for your enquiry. First of all, being a vlog, the language used is very informal. “We did it“ and “We made it“ both mean “We succeeded.“ The difference between the two is very subtle. “We did it!“ is a general expression which might be applied to any occasion, such as fund-raising, meeting a deadline or even baking a cake successfully. The phrase “We made it to 18 million subscribers“ implies a journey, a path they took to reach a final goal. He might have said: “We finally got there.“

Dear Speak Up,
on page 30 and 31 of the July issue, in the article 'Brixton Cool',  Stuart Horwood says: “There’s a lot of African people ... and there’s people shopping ...“ I would have said 'There’re’ in both sentences. I'd like to know if I’m wrong.
Thank you so much.

Dear Marina,
You are absolutely right. Grammatically both these sentences should be expressed with ‘there are’ (or the contraction ‘there’re’) because they refer to a plural noun (‘people’). However, in colloquial language many people use the singular form ‘there’s’ referring to both singular and plural nouns... it’s technically incorrect, but.... !

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