Interested in Language
We've learned that words like somebody, everybody, nobody and so on are used in a singular context.
But what if a sentence is designed like this:
If everybody just ________ as they are told, everything will work out.
Do we use 'does' or 'do' on the empty spot? Singular or plural?
Here we have both everybody (singular) and they (plural).
Is it actually two sentences in one sentence, where 'to do' goes with 'everybody' and 'to be told' goes with 'they'?
"They" (their, them) is frequently used as a gender-neutral, third-person, singular pronoun.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.