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Once again I have a line that I wrote for another site that has me a bit bugged.

Months in the freezer is going to pretty much eliminate any risk of consuming a live parasite.

Months is obviously plural, but I'm pretty sure that the line is correct as written.

How?

Or potentially, why not?

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    'Months' here signifies 'a period of several months,' singular. QED. – Kris Nov 15 '14 at 6:30
  • What bugs me a bit is the phrase has me (a bit) bugged. I am pretty sure this is not idiomatic. – pazzo Nov 15 '14 at 7:11
  • @CarSmack Hmmm...phrasing of corn-fed Iowa girls? – Jolenealaska Nov 15 '14 at 7:16
  • Sorry @Jolenealaska, my intent was to express my own dis-ease, not to impugn your usage. It had me stressed a bit. :) – pazzo Nov 15 '14 at 7:19
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In this sentence, although the time period is a plural of months, we are talking about the single time period.

Three months in the freezer is a noun phrase, and because it is one time period it is singular, so using is is the correct. This is the same reason that we say ten years is a long time to wait instead of ten years are a long time to wait - ten years is a single time period.

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Months in the freezer is going to pretty much eliminate any risk of consuming a live parasite

If months is considered to be a single period of time, then it takes a singular verb, just as the following often do:

Three years in prison is too long.

Seven seconds was too long to wait.

Months and months and months in the fridge is pretty much going to eliminate any risk...

If months are considered as separate units of time, you can use are.

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  • He beat you by this much :) Thanks though. – Jolenealaska Nov 15 '14 at 7:01
  • @Jolenealaska No problem, it's not a race :) but see my "intrusive" comment to your OP – pazzo Nov 15 '14 at 7:07

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