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  1. #1
    Unregistered Guest

    Default the usage of would have

    two examples from the sitcom 《friends》:
    Joey: Apparently he was this Russian dictator who slaughtered all these people. You'd think you would've known that!
    Chandler: Y'know, you'd think I would've.

    MR. GELLER: I know. He's like a new man. It's like a scene from Cocoon.

    MRS. GELLER: I just never would have pictured Richard with a bimbo.
    could you explain the usage of would in the two examples?
    did they use the subjunctive mood ?

    thank you very much.

  2. #2
    Szymon is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
    two examples from the sitcom 《friends》:
    Joey: Apparently he was this Russian dictator who slaughtered all these people. You'd think you would've known that!
    Chandler: Y'know, you'd think I would've.

    MR. GELLER: I know. He's like a new man. It's like a scene from Cocoon.

    MRS. GELLER: I just never would have pictured Richard with a bimbo.
    could you explain the usage of would in the two examples?
    did they use the subjunctive mood ?

    thank you very much.
    have you ever done 3rd conditional or structures such as 'would/could/should have +past participle? if not then it may be difficult to explain,

    'I think I could have done it' - today I think that it was THEN (in the past) possible/or not to happen because of me/my actions

    'would have' works similarly but it is less understandable for me, I only use it with conditionals and very rarely come across it when reading

    I think I would've known that - I think it was THEN probable/possible for me to know that

  3. #3
    colloquium is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    I think it's, perhaps, a matter of context.

    The dialogue is from an American sitcom and it presents some fairly colloquial American chat.

    In the same sense as the 3rd conditional, the language presents unreal situations from the past: things that weren't known (the existence of the dictator), things that weren't pictured (richard with a bimbo) - and seems to present the past hypothetical mood (in the same sense as 3rd conditional constructions).

  4. #4
    norwolf is offline Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by colloquium View Post
    I think it's, perhaps, a matter of context.

    The dialogue is from an American sitcom and it presents some fairly colloquial American chat.

    In the same sense as the 3rd conditional, the language presents unreal situations from the past: things that weren't known (the existence of the dictator), things that weren't pictured (richard with a bimbo) - and seems to present the past hypothetical mood (in the same sense as 3rd conditional constructions).
    I can catch yours.
    But I am feeling "you'd" odd.
    Could you please explain?
    Thank you guys so much.

  5. #5
    etteniotna is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Not a teacher.

    Maybe if you replace 'you'd' with 'one would' it would be clear.

  6. #6
    colloquium is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by etteniotna View Post
    Not a teacher.

    Maybe if you replace 'you'd' with 'one would' it would be clear.
    Yes.

    The you from you'd can be understood as the universal you; in a similar sense to the neutral pronoun one.

    It doesn't mean you in the usual 2nd person sense (you, the person I am directly addressing) but means you in the sense of anyone.

    You would think I would have known that = most people would have expected me to know that (but I didn't).

    This, at least, is my interpretation.

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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    It's the joke! Note Chandler's retort: "Y'know, you'd think I would've."

    In other words, Joey seems to be giving some esoteric piece of information. He should have said, "I thought you would've known that" but says 'you'd', which is OK if he was referring to some third person, not present, who was the person who 'didn't know'.
    Think about it: how can Chandler not know, and for Joey to say, Chandler and Joey (the 'you' of 'you'd think') would both have thought that Chandler would know it!!!

    Chandler (at least, the scriptwriter) runs with this, and turns the joke on Joey. Chandler's retort means, 'only Joey would have thought like that" -
    Y'know, only you Joey, would think/could possibly imagine that I might know this piece of esoteric information/or be able to recognize a historical figure/event from the few details you've given.

  8. #8
    colloquium is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by David L. View Post
    It's the joke! Note Chandler's retort: "Y'know, you'd think I would've."

    In other words, Joey seems to be giving some esoteric piece of information. He should have said, "I thought you would've known that" but says 'you'd', which is OK if he was referring to some third person, not present, who was the person who 'didn't know'.
    Think about it: how can Chandler not know, and for Joey to say, Chandler and Joey (the 'you' of 'you'd think') would both have thought that Chandler would know it!!!

    Chandler (at least, the scriptwriter) runs with this, and turns the joke on Joey. Chandler's retort means, 'only Joey would have thought like that" -
    Y'know, only you Joey, would think/could possibly imagine that I might know this piece of esoteric information/or be able to recognize a historical figure/event from the few details you've given.
    I see your point entirely; however I think I know of this episode. Joey is looking for a more interesting name for his acting career, and Chandler suggests Joseph Stalin (as a joke) - but Joey being the dimwitted type doesn't realise who Joseph Stalin was and accepts it as a great name to use.

    So Chandler actually suggested the name and knew all along. His you'd think I would have known remark wasn't based on the fact that he'd been given insufficient details to know, but rather that he was surprised that Joey didn't know who Stalin was, and furthermore (although this is beside the point) didn't know Chandler knew who Stalin was. This all seems to compel Chandler to keep exploiting poor Joey's ignorrance and take the situation further in the realm of complete absurdity!

    Joey: I cannot believe we didn't know who Stalin was!

    Chandler: I know! You'd think we would have heard of this guy!
    *thinking: "you big dummy!"*

  9. #9
    masterding is offline Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by colloquium View Post
    I think it's, perhaps, a matter of context.

    The dialogue is from an American sitcom and it presents some fairly colloquial American chat.

    In the same sense as the 3rd conditional, the language presents unreal situations from the past: things that weren't known (the existence of the dictator), things that weren't pictured (richard with a bimbo) - and seems to present the past hypothetical mood (in the same sense as 3rd conditional constructions).

    Why we have to use "would have" here?Can i just simply say"I have never pictured richard with a bimbo" ?does it have the same meaning?

  10. #10
    colloquium is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: the usage of would have

    Quote Originally Posted by masterding View Post
    Why we have to use "would have" here?Can i just simply say"I have never pictured richard with a bimbo" ?does it have the same meaning?
    Yes, that is (in a sense) the intended meaning, but we would probably use "had never pictured". The past perfect is appropriate because you are describing something which happened before some other past occurance.

    First, you weren't able to picture Richard with a bimbo

    I have never pictured Richard with a bimbo

    Then, further on in time (but also before NOW) you saw - or became aware that - Richard was with a bimbo.

    Your comment now has to take these two past situations into consideration.

    I saw Richard with a bimbo, but before then I had never pictured him with one.

    I am perhaps putting too fine a point on this issue and being a little too prescriptive.

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