You might know the song from Fiddler on the Roof that goes “If I were a rich man.” And if you do, you might have wondered why the words didn’t go “If I was a rich man.” After all, isn’t it true that “was” is singular and “were” is plural? “I were” simply sounds wrong!
But you may be surprised to learn that the use of “were” in the song is actually correct. The issue is one of what is known as “mood.” And the verb in “If I were a rich man” is in what grammarians call the subjunctive mood.
Did you know that verbs could have "moods"? They do, but different kinds of "moods" than emotional states. When we're talking about the "moods" of verbs, we aren't talking about being happy or sad, but something quite different.