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    #1

    I can't think of any..

    I've heard people say 'I can't think of any.' But I'm not exactly sure when to use this. For example:

    "I can't think of any solution."
    "I can't think of any other players who could do that."
    "I can't think of any reason why he was killed."

    Do we use it when we are trying to figure out a solution/answer but can't? And does it also imply that at the moment I can't but may be later I'll be able come up with a solution/answer?

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashraful Haque View Post
    I've heard people say 'I can't think of any.' But I'm not exactly sure when to use this. For example:

    "I can't think of any solution."
    "I can't think of any other players who could do that."
    "I can't think of any reason why he was killed."

    Do we use it when we are trying to figure out a solution/answer but can't?

    Yes. It's more emphatic than "I can't think of a solution."


    And does it also imply that at the moment I can't but maybe later I'll be able come up with a solution/answer?

    No.
    There are other uses of any. You can look them up.
    Last edited by GoesStation; 04-Jun-2020 at 13:28. Reason: Add a correction in the quoted text.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  3. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashraful Haque View Post
    Do we use it when we are trying to figure out a solution/answer but can't?
    Get clear in your mind the differences between a and any and one.

    Can you think of a solution?
    No, I can't think of one.

    Can you think of any solutions?
    No, I can't think of any.


    And does it also imply that at the moment I can't but may be later I'll be able come up with a solution/answer?
    If we want to make it clear that we might find an answer later, we can say:

    I can't think of one right now.
    I can't think of a ... right now.
    I can't think of any [...] right now.


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    #4

    Re: I can't think of any..

    If someone says "Please help me make an excuse." Should I say "I cant thing of any" or 'one?'
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 05-Jun-2020 at 22:49. Reason: deleting unnecessary quote

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    #5

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashraful Haque View Post
    If someone says "Please help me make come up with an excuse," should I say I can't think of "any" or "one"?
    Use "one".
    I am not a teacher.

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    #6

    Re: I can't think of any..

    I've made up two scenarios by myself. Please let me know if I understand the phrase.

    A: What are you going to say if Mr. Smith asks why I left early.
    B: Don't worry I'll think of something.

    X: What did you say when Mr. Smith asked why I left early.
    Y: I couldn't think of anything. So stayed quiet.

  7. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashraful Haque View Post
    I've made up two scenarios by myself. Please let me know if I understand the phrase.

    A: What are you going to say if Mr. Smith asks why I left early?
    B: Don't worry. I'll think of something.

    X: What did you say when Mr. Smith asked why I left early?
    Y: I couldn't think of anything, so I kept quiet.
    You used something and anything correctly.

    Was that your question?
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #8

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    You used something and anything correctly.

    Was that your question?
    Yes. That and if I've used 'think of' correctly.

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    #9

    Re: I can't think of any..

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashraful Haque View Post
    Yes. That and if I've used 'think of' correctly.
    You have.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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