Dear Ann Landers, Have Americans forgotten there is such a thing as verb tense? I am shocked when I hear people say "woulda came," "coulda went," "shoulda did," "woulda took," "had went," "hadn't came" and so on. Don't they realize "woulda" and "coulda" are slang versions of "would've" and "could've" -- which are contractions for "would have" and "could have"?
I heard a narrator say, "I seen," in a political commercial and a TV reporter say, "We haven't spoke." An attorney in a television show said, "The evidence do not," and a TV anchorwoman said, "Had threw it" and "between you and I."
I was a secretary for almost 50 years and am thankful that, with only a high school education, my English is impeccable. You will do a lot of folks a big favor if you print this letter and bring it to their attention. -- E.E., Wood Ridge, N.J.
Dear E.E., Thanks for taking the time and trouble to write. I shoulda thunk to tell them off myself.