Consistency

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vladz

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I always teach my students to have consistency in the tenses when they write compositions. However, I still find it difficult to check their works just like what is written below.

Last year, I went to Japan which (is/was) a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who (is/was) my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby (is/was) so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms (is/was) so huge and the meals (is/are) great.
 

RonBee

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Re:
  • Last year, I went to Japan which (is/was) a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who (is/was) my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby (is/was) so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms (is/was) so huge and the meals (is/are) great.
Say:
  • Last year, I went to Japan, which is a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities, and I saw Glenn, who was my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby is so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms are spacious, and the meals are wonderful.

:)
 

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vladz said:
I always teach my students to have consistency in the tenses when they write compositions. However, I still find it difficult to check their works just like what is written below.

Last year, I went to Japan which (is/was) a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who (is/was) my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby (is/was) so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms (is/was) so huge and the meals (is/are) great.

In my opinion, the best advice for these tenses is to separate what is always true from what was true in the past. This is, of course, a matter of opinion, in some cases. But, one can separate what is likely to immutable from what is not.

Last year, I went to Japan which is a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who is my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby was so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms were so huge and the meals were great.

The comments about Japan are likely to to be always true, as is also true of your friend. The comments about the hotel are not. :wink:
 

RonBee

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That's the trouble with either/or choices. Things are not always so cut and dried. I figured that since the writer thinks the place is so nice that "you" would want to stay there that he/she would keep it mostly in the present tense. Still, I should have said, "The lobby was so clean...." After all, cleanliness (unless you are talking about a habit) is a fairly temporary thing. The rooms, however, after only a year's time are probably still going to be spacious.
 
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vladz

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Thanks again for the help. I'm just wondering, do you have any guidelines for the consistency. Thanks again!
 

RonBee

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MikeNewYork said:
vladz said:
I always teach my students to have consistency in the tenses when they write compositions. However, I still find it difficult to check their works just like what is written below.

Last year, I went to Japan which (is/was) a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who (is/was) my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby (is/was) so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms (is/was) so huge and the meals (is/are) great.

In my opinion, the best advice for these tenses is to separate what is always true from what was true in the past. This is, of course, a matter of opinion, in some cases. But, one can separate what is likely to immutable from what is not.

Last year, I went to Japan which is a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who is my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby was so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms were so huge and the meals were great.

The comments about Japan are likely to to be always true, as is also true of your friend. The comments about the hotel are not. :wink:

I don't think I would say "Glenn is my childhood friend" unless I was a child.

:wink:
 

Tdol

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My friend since childhood? ;-)
 

MikeNewYork

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RonBee said:
MikeNewYork said:
vladz said:
I always teach my students to have consistency in the tenses when they write compositions. However, I still find it difficult to check their works just like what is written below.

Last year, I went to Japan which (is/was) a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who (is/was) my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby (is/was) so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms (is/was) so huge and the meals (is/are) great.

In my opinion, the best advice for these tenses is to separate what is always true from what was true in the past. This is, of course, a matter of opinion, in some cases. But, one can separate what is likely to immutable from what is not.

Last year, I went to Japan which is a very beautiful country. I visited many different cities and I saw Glenn who is my childhood friend. In Osaka, I stayed in a very nice hotel. The lobby was so clean that you would like to stay there. The rooms were so huge and the meals were great.

The comments about Japan are likely to to be always true, as is also true of your friend. The comments about the hotel are not. :wink:

I don't think I would say "Glenn is my childhood friend" unless I was a child.

:wink:

Unfortunately, "was" suggests that the friendship has ended. :wink:
 

RonBee

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How about:
  • Glenn is a friend of mine, and we have been friends since childhood.
Eh?

:wink:
 

MikeNewYork

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RonBee said:
How about:
  • Glenn is a friend of mine, and we have been friends since childhood.
Eh?

:wink:

That would be fine. :wink:
 
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