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    #1

    Do they mean the same?

    There are two sentences:

    1. I can't just go to Berlin.
    2. I just can't go to Berlin.

    Do they mean the same or does it depend on the context?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by victor su View Post
    There are two sentences:

    1. I can't just go to Berlin.
    2. I just can't go to Berlin.

    Do they mean the same or does it depend on the context?
    As written, they have different meanings.

    1. I can't only go to Berlin. While I'm there, I will visit other cities and towns.

    2. I just can't go to Berlin. There are too many painful memories for me there.

    I don't think context will make much difference, but individuals may switch these uses.

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    #3

    Smile Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    As written, they have different meanings.

    1. I can't only go to Berlin. While I'm there, I will visit other cities and towns.

    2. I just can't go to Berlin. There are too many painful memories for me there.

    I don't think context will make much difference, but individuals may switch these uses.
    Thank you.
    I heard this sentence "I can't just go to Berlin" from a comic movie "Euro Trip". I guess he has many things to consider about as he is a predictable person, so it is a crazy idea for him to go to Berlin to meet his e-friend.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by victor su View Post
    Thank you.
    I heard this sentence "I can't just go to Berlin" from a comic movie "Euro Trip". I guess he has many things to consider about as he is a predictable person, so it is a crazy idea for him to go to Berlin to meet his e-friend.
    OK. That is another meaning for "I can't just". It means that, without some sort of change, the action cannot happen. The "just" adds the element of spontaneity to the action.

    I can't just go to Berlin. (I have too much work.)
    I can't just show up at her party. (I wasn't invited.)
    I can't just ask go up to her and ask her out. (We weren't introduced.)

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    #5

    Smile Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    OK. That is another meaning for "I can't just". It means that, without some sort of change, the action cannot happen. The "just" adds the element of spontaneity to the action.

    I can't just go to Berlin. (I have too much work.)
    I can't just show up at her party. (I wasn't invited.)
    I can't just ask go up to her and ask her out. (We weren't introduced.)
    Yes, you are right. Thank you.

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    #6

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    Other subtle differences between the two:

    "I just can't go to Berlin." (There are too many sad memories for me there; that was where I caught Horst with another woman.)

    "I can't just go to Berlin." (I need at least a month to plan such a trip...I have to arrange things at work, save some money, renew my passport and find someone to take care of my dog."

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    #7

    Smile Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ouisch View Post
    Other subtle differences between the two:

    "I just can't go to Berlin." (There are too many sad memories for me there; that was where I caught Horst with another woman.)

    "I can't just go to Berlin." (I need at least a month to plan such a trip...I have to arrange things at work, save some money, renew my passport and find someone to take care of my dog."
    Thank you. But what's the meaning of " I caught Horst with another woman"?

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    #8

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by victor su View Post
    Thank you. But what's the meaning of " I caught Horst with another woman"?
    Horst, my German boyfriend, who I thought was dedicated to me. There he was, in a Berlin train station, kissing another woman.

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    #9

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ouisch View Post
    Horst, my German boyfriend, who I thought was dedicated to me. There he was, in a Berlin train station, kissing another woman.

    Oh, I see. I never thought of Horst as a man's name. Thank you.

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    #10

    Re: Do they mean the same?

    There is another possible meaning of "I can't just go to Berlin", depending on exactly how it's said. It could mean: "It's not enough to go to Berlin and nowhere else. I must also see Paris, London, Rome, Venice..."

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