relative synonyms

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Teia

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Hi

Are the following expressions relative synonyms for sometimes?

off and on, now and then, at times, from time to time.

If you know any other synonym or synonyms for the word written in bold letters above, please tell me.

Are there any important differences between these expressions?

Thank you very much in advance.
 

bertietheblue

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Hi

Are the following expressions relative synonyms for sometimes?

off and on, now and then, at times, from time to time.

If you know any other synonym or synonyms for the word written in bold letters above, please tell me.

Are there any important differences between these expressions?

Thank you very much in advance.

'every so often'?

I'd say 'at times' is used more for states than intermittent activities:

'At times he seems happy, but at other times he sinks into a deep depression.'

To me, the other 3 expressions are closer in meaning to 'occasionally' but then there's such a lot of overlap between the two - one man's 'occasionally' might be another man's 'sometimes'. Which reminds me of a split-screen scene from Woody Allen's Annie Hall. A couple are seeing the same psychotherapist ( or 'shrink' as Woody prefers).

"How often do you have sex?"

He: "Hardly ever - maybe three times a week."

She: "Constantly! I'd say three times a week!"
 

Teia

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'every so often'?

I'd say 'at times' is used more for states than intermittent activities:

'At times he seems happy, but at other times he sinks into a deep depression.'

To me, the other 3 expressions are closer in meaning to 'occasionally' but then there's such a lot of overlap between the two - one man's 'occasionally' might be another man's 'sometimes'. Which reminds me of a split-screen scene from Woody Allen's Annie Hall. A couple are seeing the same psychotherapist ( or 'shrink' as Woody prefers).

"How often do you have sex?"

He: "Hardly ever - maybe three times a week."

She: "Constantly! I'd say three times a week!"

:lol: Thank you so much! Good to remember! [ is this sentence correct? How shall I say it better?]
 

Teia

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eg

'Well worth remembering!'

Why did you cross the word shall out? Is could more polite? I think so. [ I have the bad habit to answer my own questions:)]

Thank you for your advice and answers.
 

bertietheblue

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Why did you cross the word shall out? Because it's wrong. Is could more polite? I think so. [ I have the bad habit to answer my own questions:)]

Thank you for your advice and answers.

Bertie
 

Teia

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'can' is less formal here.

(Sorry, for the succession of afterthoughts.)

No problem! Any advice is welcome. I have been studying modal verbs for long and I`m not accustomed to using them properly yet.

Where should I put the adverb properly?

I have been studying modal verbs for long and I`m not accustomed to properly using them yet. - Is this correct?
 

bertietheblue

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'can' is less formal here.

(Sorry, for the succession of afterthoughts.)

Sorry, I take that back. I don't think the distinction is between formality and inforrmality but between the level of uncertainty/confidence on the part of the speaker but I'd have to do some more thinking to say more about the can I .../could I ... differences (in case you ask).
 

bertietheblue

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No problem! Any advice is welcome. I have been studying modal verbs for long and I`m not accustomed to using them properly yet.

Where should I put the adverb properly?

I have been studying modal verbs for long and I`m not accustomed to properly using them yet. - Is this correct?

We're drifting off the subject of the original thread here. Why don't you ask that question as a new thread. I can't answer right now as there's something I want to watch on the BBC website. Bye for now!
 

Teia

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We're drifting off the subject of the original thread here. Why don't you ask that question as a new thread. I can't answer right now as there's something I want to watch on the BBC website. Bye for now!

Thank you very much for everything.

Good night!
 
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