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So when I want to say "You can choose an apple and/or pear, and a bottle of soda and/or juice." Is there a better way to say this, without the clump of and/or?

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marked as duplicate by jwpat7, Brian Hooper, FumbleFingers, Lynn, TrevorD Aug 5 '13 at 22:50

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1 Answer

You can have any of an apple, a pear, soda and juice.

It's not elegant, but it is clear.

Longer, but probably more common would be, You can have an apple, a pear, soda, juice or any combination.

SUPPLEMENT

As noted in FumbleFingers comment, it is not clear as to whether the person can have any combination whatsoever (which is what the above answer suggests) or whether this is more like the forms used in Chinese menus in the US in the 1950s to 1980s which directed you to choose one from column A and one from column B.

Your choice might be thus expressed as

One or more from column A and one or more from column B

This assumes that you will choose at least one fruit and one drink.

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Putting aside the implications of OP's you can suggesting that if you don't want to, you're not obliged to make any choices at all, it seems to me his text implies that you should choose either one or both fruits, and one or both drinks. That's to say you should end up with 2, 3, or 4 different things. But your rephrasing allows the possibility of choosing only one thing (or even nothing at all), so I do not think it's equivalent. –  FumbleFingers Aug 5 '13 at 21:10
    
@FumbleFingers Your comment well illustrates that the question is not clear and probably reflects the OP's frustration with the lack of conjunctive/disjunctive terms that give logical or mathematical certainty. –  bib Aug 5 '13 at 21:55
    
@ bib: Well, I certainly can't quibble about your answer text now, so have an upvote! –  FumbleFingers Aug 5 '13 at 22:46
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