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  1. keannu's Avatar
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    #1

    The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Do you always have to say "to have" or "have" in this case? Does "having" never work?

    ex)A: What's your usual routine when you wake up in the morning?
    B: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee.(to have, have)

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    Do you always have to say "to have" or "have" in this case? Does "having" never work?

    ex)A: What's your usual routine when you wake up in the morning?
    B: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee.(to have, have)
    No, "having" doesn't work in that case.

  3. keannu's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    No, "having" doesn't work in that case.
    What about this one?
    ex)The first thing I always do is making a cup of coffee.
    I think in this both make and to make work. The reason why "having" can't be used is because it can give a nuance of "doing or eating something", right?
    I think all noun forms can come in the position except "having" which is an exception. Please let me know if you agree.

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    #4

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    'The first thing I always do is make a cup of coffee', or '. . .have a cup of coffee'.

    That's how to say it.

    Rover

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    What about this one?
    ex)The first thing I always do is making a cup of coffee.
    I think in this both make and to make work. The reason why "having" can't be used is because it can give a nuance of "doing or eating something", right?
    I think all noun forms can come in the position except "having" which is an exception. Please let me know if you agree.
    No. As Rover has exemplified, it has nothing to do with the verb. It's the part of speech that you have wrong.
    "The first thing to do is [to] <bare infinitive>"
    Thus, you can say, "The first thing I do is make coffee."
    "The first thing to do is [to] make coffee". (With or without 'to')

  5. keannu's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    No. As Rover has exemplified, it has nothing to do with the verb. It's the part of speech that you have wrong.
    "The first thing to do is [to] <bare infinitive>"
    Thus, you can say, "The first thing I do is make coffee."
    "The first thing to do is [to] make coffee". (With or without 'to')
    You mean when there's "do" in the subject, you should always have to use to (bare infinitive)? I think so, but I was confused. So "do" is the point here?
    What about this one? "What he hated was having a cup of coffee". Doesn't this work, either?
    Last edited by keannu; 04-Jul-2011 at 23:17.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    You mean when there's "do" in the subject, you should always have to use to (bare infinitive)? I think so, but I was confused. So "do" is the point here?
    What about this one? "What he hated was having a cup of coffee". Doesn't this work, either?
    You can say, "What he hated was having a cup of coffee." Here you are simply saying that there was something (a noun) that he hated. "Having" is a gerund noun.
    But there's no infinitive verb here. In the original sentence you are equating two infinitive verb actions joined by a copula ("is"):

    A: What do you need to do?
    B: I need to make coffee.
    A: Then what you need to do is [to] make coffee.

  7. keannu's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    You can say, "What he hated was having a cup of coffee." Here you are simply saying that there was something (a noun) that he hated. "Having" is a gerund noun.
    But there's no infinitive verb here. In the original sentence you are equating two infinitive verb actions joined by a copula ("is"):

    A: What do you need to do?
    B: I need to make coffee.
    A: Then what you need to do is [to] make coffee.
    I got it, it's not because of "do" but because of the infinitive form. So I guess this also works.
    ex)What the housemaid had to make as the first thing in the morning was make the bed.
    All you have to see is see you are no more a child.

  8. Raymott's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    I got it, it's not because of "do" but because of the infinitive form. So I guess this also works.
    ex)What the housemaid had to make as the first thing in the morning was make the bed.
    All you have to see is see that you are no more longer a child.
    Not exactly. I think you're beginning to read too much into my examples. Sorry.
    I don't have a fully-elaborated theory of verb forms on either side of "is".

  9. keannu's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: The first thing I always do is having a cup of coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Not exactly. I think you're beginning to read too much into my examples. Sorry.
    I don't have a fully-elaborated theory of verb forms on either side of "is".
    I'm a lot more sorry, I got more confused than before,,I'm sorry to bug you.

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