"No Woman No Cry" Bob Marley
"Something I Can Never Have" NIN
"It's Too Late" Carole King
"You've Lost that Loving Feeling" The Righteous Brothers
"I Hate Everything About You" 3 Days Grace
"Lost Cause" Beck
See how negative neither and nor are. The music they chose for their playlist shows that are not open to any possibilities.
They have neither a woman nor a loving feeling.
Either and or’s playlist, on the other hand, shows that they are open to lots of possibilities:
"I Will Survive" Gloria Gaynor
"Eye of the Tiger" Survivor
"Beautiful Day" U2
"What a Wonderful Word" Louis Armstrong
"I Believe I Can Fly" R. Kelly
"We Will Rock You" Queen
The will either survive or rock you.
The duo either/or offers a choice between two possibilities while neither/nor negates both possibilities. And, like you will never buy a Hall and Garfunkel album or one from Simon and Oates, either sticks with or and neither sticks with nor.
But, when either and or separate, they will get a little negative if paired up with a negative verb.
Correct: I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You Either
Incorrect: I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You Neither
Correct: I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That…or That)
Incorrect: I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That…nor That)
Pairing neither and nor with a negative verb is just too negative.
However, here is the most common error we make with either/or and neither/nor:
Either “Total Eclipse of the Heart” or “Like a Virgin” are the best karaoke songs.
It might not look wrong, but we have to remember that when we use either/or and neither/nor, we are talking about one or the other of the possibilities presented- not both. Therefore,we use a singular verb. The are should become an is and the songs should become song:
Either “Total Eclipse of the Heart” or “Like a Virgin” is the best karaoke song.
But, of course, there is an exception:
If the word closest to the verb is plural, then the verb remains plural:
Neither the candy nor the flowers are enough to win me back; I need to be serenaded with "In Your Eyes.”
But, if we switched around candy and flowers, the verb would go back to being singular because candy is singular:
Neither the flowers nor the candy is enough to win me back; I need to be serenaded with "In Your Eyes."
Okay- call me.