Allan Sherman talks plurals in the song “One Hippopotami”

Allan Sherman was a humorous songwriter in the 60s. He also created the game show “I’ve Got a Secret“! He is most famous for his song about summer camp “Camp Grenada” ( “hello muddah, hello faddah…”), but I came across this song that relies on our English plural forms of nouns. It’s silly, it’s fun!

By Allan Sherman

One hippopotami cannot get on a bus,
Because one hippopotami is two hippopotamus.

And if you have two goose, that makes one geese.
A pair of mouse is mice. A pair of moose is meese.

A paranoia is a bunch of mental blocks.
And when Ben Casey meets Kildaire, that’s called a paradox.

When two minks fall in love, with all their heart and soul,
You’ll find the plural of two minks is one mink stole.

Singulars and plurals are so different, bless my soul.
Has it ever occurred to you that the plural of “half” is “whole”?

A bunch of tooth is teeth. A group of foot is feet.
And two canaries make a pair–they call it a parakeet.

A paramecium is not a pair.
A parallelogram is just a crazy square.

Nobody knows just what a paraphernalia is.
And what is half a pair of scissors, but a single sciz?

With someone you adore, if you should find romance,
You’ll pant, and pant once more, and that’s a pair of pants!


About Don Segal

See Commentary, Photos, Drawings and Poetry on my blog at
Gallery | This entry was posted in Humor, Singer Songwriter, Summer Camp, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Allan Sherman talks plurals in the song “One Hippopotami”

  1. Judith Ward says:

    Always loved Allen Sherman; this is a cutie!

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