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    • Join Date: Jun 2007
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    #1

    Question Tense and meaning confusion.

    Hello all.

    I am hoping that one of you may be able to shed a little clarifying light on a tiny point of contention I have had with my girlfriend.

    Now, I am not an expert in the correct terminology for certain uses and modes of the English language, so please forgive my attempts at explanation.

    In a conversation earlier on MSN, my g/f made the below statement:

    "i would actually love to spend an evening in high protocol mode, if only to prove to You that i -can- do it and i -do- love it"

    Now, the context of the sentence is not important or in question, but the usage of the present singular 1st person ,'can' and 'do', caused a little ripple.

    I curiously asked if she therefore had experience of (spending an evening in high-protocol mode), for surely the present is suggestive of active experience, of knowledge gained by participation or observation? She replied no, simply that she *knew* she liked it without having done 'it'.

    The fact of anything having been done or not is moot, but My question is this. Surely if someone wished to say that they hadn't done something but felt/knew/were sure that they 'would' or 'could' like it, then the present singular 1st person would be the wrong tense to use? If so, what would be the right tense to use? Could you explain? She insists that 'do' can also mean 'will', that experience is not always necessary to make a statement of certainty. Am I wrong in thinking that 'do' and 'can' suggest experience, and if there is no-experience then they would be the wrong words to use to describe assumption or expectation or even presumption of enjoyment, or anything; as opposed to almost empirical awareness and fact?

    I hope I've not meandered too much, and that My question is relatively clear. Hope to read explainations from you.

    DrJ.

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    #2

    Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    The issue here is one of certainty rather than experience. The expression "I can do it," expresses the certainty of the speaker and nothing more.


    • Join Date: Jun 2007
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    #3

    Question Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    Very true, and thank you. But what about the usage of 'do'? Doesn't that imply active experience, if that makes any sense? Active understanding, undergoing or having undergone something so as to gain this knowledge?

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    DrJ, I would agree with you. If she has never done this, then "I can do it and I would love it" would be what I would expect to see. Perhaps the intention was to say "I do love the IDEA of it."

    (But then, positions are a little more important than grammar in Gor, aren't they? ;) )


    • Join Date: Jun 2007
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    #5

    Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    Well well. Not a million-miles removed from the truth there, but less 'Gor' more respectful/consensual, intellectually & aesthetically pleasing shenanigans

    Still, made Me chuckle to see someone recognising the 'scenario'. And thank's too

    DrJ.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    DrJ, we're everywhere!

    (And I hope you find this evening becomes one of many, if it's fun for you both.)

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    #7

    Re: Tense and meaning confusion.

    By the way, the word do is often used as an intensifier.

    Someone may say, "I do love that restaurant," even though they haven't been asked what they think.

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