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Thread: Hard thing

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 5

    Smile Hard thing

    Hi all, I've finally understood the difference between simple past and present perfect, but there is something that I'd like to know.

    I don't know if it depends from the fact that you are American or English, all of us know that the present perfect is used for things happened and have something to do with the past (I've become numb = I became and I'm still numb - I've forgotten how to play = I forgot how to play and I stil don't remember etc...) instead the simple past is used for things happened in a certain past.

    My doubt is the following, I've become numb, I've forgotten how to play are things happened in the present and still go on, but what if someone wants to write "I cooked" or "I've cooked", if someone has just cooked something is in the present so it should be used the present perfect "I've cooked" but since the action of cooking isn't like being numb ('cause you are numb and you keep being numb instead when you finish cooking the action ends) but since it's happened in the past and the action of cooking is finished is should be "I cooked" same as things as "I've told him" or "I told him" if you tell something to someone in that precise moment etc...

    So I was wondering are they same just English use the "I've" thing and the American the simple past so you can use both or not?

    I lived five years in U.S.A. and I've got confused in fact I still don't understand what you should use if you make an action in that exact present if the present perfect 'cause the action happened 20 sec. ago or the simple past 'cause the action has already finished?

    Sorry for the long essay, but I've got to know the right difference for my Advanced Final Test. Thank to all that will hopefully answer me.

  1. Editor,
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Laos

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 60,178

    Re: Hard thing

    The present perfect connects to now, so when I say that I have cooked, the action is finished but it is relevant now because, say, we are going to eat in a minute or because I am now free to do something else.

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