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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #1

    I am always going by bike

    Is the following sentence grammatically correct and natural with the present continuous tense used to describe an action which happens very often (but without a negative connotation)?

    I am always
    going by bike.

    I am interested, because in grammar books it is often emphasised that, if you use the present continuous to describe repeated actions, usually it's when you want to critisise someone's behaviour (She is always losing her keys). Can we use the present continuous in sentences with positive or neutral, not negative connotation?
    Last edited by englishhobby; 19-Oct-2016 at 23:20.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: I am always going by bike

    The present continuous there is unnatural. For a habitual action, we use "I always go by bike". You're right that the present continuous can be used in a more critical way but, in your example, it should be "losing", not "loosing". Check out the difference between "lose" (verb) and "loose" (adjective).
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: I am always going by bike

    The present continuous with 'always' is not necessarily critical; It depends on context.My new boyfriend is so sweet. He's always buying me flowers, for example, is very positive.

  4. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: I am always going by bike

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    The present continuous with 'always' is not necessarily critical; It depends on context.My new boyfriend is so sweet. He's always buying me flowers, for example, is very positive.

    My original example is also with always (I am always going by bike). It is not critical. So is it possible to use it this way?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

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    #5

    Re: I am always going by bike

    As ems said in post #2, 'The present continuous there is unnatural'.

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    #6

    Re: I am always going by bike

    If there isn't a good reason for using it, then why do it?

  5. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: I am always going by bike

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    As ems said in post #2, 'The present continuous there is unnatural'.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    If there isn't a good reason for using it, then why do it?
    Yes, I agree. But I can't make out in which situations it is natural to use the present continuous for habitual actions if it isn't criticism. Can we say that it's possible when you express strong feelings, emotions, either positive or negative? There should be some limited number of situations where it sounds natural...
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: I am always going by bike

    The 'always' is hyperbolic. It's not literal. He's not literally always buying her flowers. This 'always' has the meaning of 'excessively' (if bad), or 'very generously' (in the flowers case), etc. There's no need for this adverbial just for riding a bike. You certainly wouldn't say it of yourself.

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    #9

    Re: I am always going by bike

    Strong feelings would be a good case for me. Some grammar books oversimplify it by suggesting it is negative- it often is, but not always.

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