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    #1

    borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Is it acceptable to say 'Can I borrow this classroom / hall / piece of land / your home phone, etc.?" Thank you most sincerely.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Quote Originally Posted by maoyueh View Post
    Is it acceptable to say 'Can I borrow this classroom / hall / piece of land / your home phone, etc.?" Thank you most sincerely.
    Of those examples, I would say yes to "classroom" and "your home phone", but no to "hall" and "piece of land".

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Why can't a phone be moved?
    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.

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Why can't a phone be moved?
    I assume the OP meant that it can't be taken from the house, in the way that if you asked a friend if you could borrow a book, you would probably mean that you wanted to take it home.

    Their home phone is probably attached by a cable to the wall. The use of "to borrow" in that scenario isn't entirely correct but I daresay we all use it. We should say "Can I use your phone?"

    By the same token, "Can I borrow your toilet?" is frequently used (in the UK, at least) - that would be bathroom/restroom in the US. Of course it's ridiculous to suggest that you're actually going to borrow an item of bathroom furniture but we still say it.

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    #5

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Why can't a phone be moved?
    My idea is that a cellphone or mobile is movable, but we don't usually remove somebody's home phone and bring it to our home and use it. Thank you.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    I think "borrow" meaning "to make use of" is pretty common for a lot of uses.

    But "Can I use..." is also pretty common for these too.

    (Giving my west side of the Atlantic opinion.)
    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.

  5. JohnParis's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    You may borrow my classroom, my conference hall, a parcel of my land for your summer garden, my phone, my pen or pencil but you may use my toilet only if you aim properly and raise and lower the seat.

  6. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnParis View Post
    You may borrow my classroom, my conference hall, a parcel of my land for your summer garden, my phone, my pen or pencil but you may use my toilet only if you aim properly and raise and lower the seat.
    I trust we are to lower the seat (and more particularly the lid) only after we have used it?

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    #9

    Re: borrow sometning that cannot be moved?

    Lower the lid?
    Oh my - that guarantees dinner out with a bottle of bubbly.

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