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  1. B45
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    #1

    If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

    A rapper says to an interviewer:

    If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

    Is this sentence okay? Or should it be:

    If I sat like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

    Rappers do not speak conventional English. Yes, grammatically, it should be 'sat' with "it would look". But I'd give the guy a break; he's doing an interview, not sitting an oral English exam.

  3. B45
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    #3

    Re: If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Rappers do not speak conventional English. Yes, grammatically, it should be 'sat' with "it would look". But I'd give the guy a break; he's doing an interview, not sitting an oral English exam.
    What really confuses me is whether an If clause sentence always have to follow the conditional rules, because I swear to God, I've heard educated native speakers use would in an if clause sentence and the tenses were different.

    For example the sentence above in questions: Why can't it be sit with would? Would is possibility and maybe some would think it doesn't look like it's a jail style posture. Right?

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Batman45 View Post
    What really confuses me is whether an If clause sentence always have to follow the conditional rules, because I swear to God, I've heard educated native speakers use would in an if clause sentence and the tenses were different.
    Can you give me some examples of what you mean?

    For example the sentence above in questions: Why can't it be sit with would? Would is possibility and maybe some would think it doesn't look like it's a jail style posture. Right?
    First, 'would' is not a maybe. That's your last point. But we could discuss that later. "Would" is absolute; obviously it can be modified, as in "probably would", or the 'probably' might be understood.

    "Why can't it be sit with 'would' (not related to above). You mean why is "If I sit like this(straight and upright), it would look like I was locked up" wrong. Firstly, one assumes that during in the interview, he did sit like that, and he should be asserting, "If I sit like this, I look like I am locked up." If you are doing something, 'would' doesn't work, because it should be happening. "If I cut my wrist, like this <cuts wrist>, I would bleed". There's an obvious problem with 'would'. He obviously is bleeding, or he's wrong in predicting he would bleed.

    To cut it short, we say:
    "If I sit like that, I will look silly"
    "If I sat like that, I would look silly."
    Last edited by Raymott; 26-Jun-2014 at 20:53. Reason: typos

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