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My mom asks me "How is your today?" every day. I have been trying to tell her that nobody ever says that, and that most people say,

  • "How is your day?" (somehow, using the noun day is more acceptable than using the noun today here)
  • "How is your day going?" (now the question is about the going of the day, rather than the day itself)
  • "How are you today?" (using today as an adverb to describe the verb are, and now the question is about you rather than about the day)

But I am having trouble articulating why exactly so few people say "How is your today?", and whether it is even wrong to say that.

I am reading https://www.dictionary.com/browse/today and https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/today and it appears to be a noun like any other. If it is okay to say "How is your [noun]?" like the following examples:

  • "How is your dog?"
  • "How is your day?"
  • "How is your Monday?"

...then why can't we say, "How is your today?"?

If there really is something special about the noun "today" which precludes it from being used in this way, then oughtn't dictionaries make a note of these unique restrictions?

4

The phrase is correct, just unusual. People use it to be unique, and to make mundane questions like "how are you today" become a little more interesting. And clearly it worked, since you asked this question.

Don't discourage your mom from saying this phrase. It's good that people use phrases like this, because it makes a question that should truly be asked wholeheartedly stand out more. I don't really give the question "how's your day going?" much thought. I just automatically say "fine". But a phrase like "how's your today?" turns on the thinking machine, and my answer is sincere. It's also a much more lighthearted approach to the daily question.

I know I did a lot more than answering your core question, with a lot of opinion based stuff, but I actually think it's something one should consider. Using sprighty and unusual phrases instead of the grey, mundane and regular phrases we've become so accustomed to. Give it a try.

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    If Mom's native language is not English, then saying how is your today might be more misuse than cleverness. Similar to how my sister-in-law mixes up he and she all the time, not because we're in San Francisco and gender is fluid here but because in her native language, there is not much of a distinction (as I understand it; I don't actually speak Illicano or Tagalog.) – Roger Sinasohn Aug 6 '18 at 22:45
  • You make a point. If that is the case, then the OPs correction of their mom was justified. – A. Kvåle Aug 7 '18 at 19:17

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