George Carlin had a great bit about Stuff. He talked about his stuff, your stuff and everybody's stuff LINK. He talked about stuff, but he neglected to mention things.
We distinguish between
these two classes of existence. We can count things, but stuff
forms a sort of cumulative mass. Things are made of stuff (cars
are made of steel), but stuff is made of things (gold is made of
Chairs, dogs, balloons,
and flowers are things. If I have one dog and add another, I
have two dogs. My chair did not exist until it was assembled
into that form. If a balloon pops, it is no longer a balloon.
Helium, gravy, wood,
and music are stuff. If some helium escapes my balloon, it seems
wrong to say that I lost a thing. If I divide my gravy into two
portions, it is still gravy. If I chop my cabin into firewood,
the amount of wood in the world has not changed.
distinguish between thing terms and stuff terms, where a thing
is a count noun, and stuff is a mass noun. Syntactically, thing
functions as a term that refers to a single "entity" and hence
takes "a" and "every" and is subject to pluralization, while
stuff functions refers to a plurality of "entities" and hence
takes some and is not subject to pluralization. Bottom line,
we have some things and some stuff.