English: Would someone please help me with my English?

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smallwhite
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby smallwhite » Mon Oct 26, 2020 11:26 am

allf100 wrote:Sit tight just looking up at the cloud rolls up or spreads.

DaveAgain wrote:Sit tight quietly just looking up at the cloud clouds [as they] rolls roll [bunch?] up or spreads spread.

What I meant was, do you understand why your sentence was incorrect?
Can you write a few other similar sentences?
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby allf100 » Mon Oct 26, 2020 11:37 am

smallwhite wrote:
allf100 wrote:Sit tight just looking up at the cloud rolls up or spreads.

DaveAgain wrote:Sit tight quietly just looking up at the cloud clouds [as they] rolls roll [bunch?] up or spreads spread.

What I meant was, do you understand why your sentence was incorrect?
Can you write a few other similar sentences?


Thank you very much for your asking.

Yes, I think I understood. If I have checked again my grammar, I probably wouldn't have made such a mistake.

look at the clouds == look at + object (The object shouldn't be followed by other verb or verbs.)

I looked at him as/when he past by me.

I called a waiter as he was over there.

I called a waiter who was over there.

Do you think those sentences above I made are correct? :)
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby smallwhite » Mon Oct 26, 2020 11:52 am

allf100 wrote:
smallwhite wrote:
allf100 wrote:Sit tight just looking up at the cloud rolls up or spreads.

DaveAgain wrote:Sit tight quietly just looking up at the cloud clouds [as they] rolls roll [bunch?] up or spreads spread.

What I meant was, do you understand why your sentence was incorrect?
Can you write a few other similar sentences?


Thank you very much for your asking.

Yes, I think I understood. If I have checked again my grammar, I probably wouldn't have made such a mistake.

look at the clouds == look at + object (The object shouldn't be followed by other verb or verbs.)

I looked at him as/when he past by me.

I called a waiter as he was over there.

I called a waiter who was over there.

Do you think those sentences above I made are correct? :)

I spot a spelling mistake, and I don't think you can put "a waiter" (non-specific) and "he" (specific) together like that even in Chinese 他在那邊的時候我叫了一位侍應生 (x) which sounds like they are 2 different people.

But did you mean to write "as the cloud" rather than "at the cloud"?
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby allf100 » Mon Oct 26, 2020 2:09 pm

I spot a spelling mistake, and I don't think you can put "a waiter" (non-specific) and "he" (specific) together like that even in Chinese 他在那邊的時候我叫了一位侍應生 (x) which sounds like they are 2 different people.


Good point. :) I accept it. I should have said 'I called the waiter as he past by.

But did you mean to write "as the cloud" rather than "at the cloud"?


I'm not sure if you refer to my original sentence - 'Sit tight just looking up at the cloud rolls up or spreads'.

If yes, I meant ' Sit back looking up at the clouds as they bunch up or spread' as DaveAgain has corrected me.

If no, would you please specify which sentence of mine you are talking about?
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby allf100 » Mon Oct 26, 2020 8:58 pm

Hello smallwhite. It's very kind of you to help me with my English :D
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby rdearman » Tue Oct 27, 2020 8:03 am

I think you have a similar problem to the one smallwhite pointed out. I thought about this one a long time myself, because I don't think it is wrong, it just sounds a little odd to me.

I called a waiter who was over there.

You're talking about a non-specific person, then you give a specific location. While the sentence isn't wrong, it would sound more natural to have "the" instead of "a". However, if the sentence was longer and with some punctuation it would be more natural.

I called a waiter, who was over there, to bring me the bill.

But take this with a grain of salt, although I'm a native speaker I frequently make mistakes in English. :)
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby allf100 » Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:27 am

rdearman wrote:I think you have a similar problem to the one smallwhite pointed out. I thought about this one a long time myself, because I don't think it is wrong, it just sounds a little odd to me.

I called a waiter who was over there.

You're talking about a non-specific person, then you give a specific location. While the sentence isn't wrong, it would sound more natural to have "the" instead of "a". However, if the sentence was longer and with some punctuation it would be more natural.

I called a waiter, who was over there, to bring me the bill.

But take this with a grain of salt, although I'm a native speaker I frequently make mistakes in English. :)


Hello again rdearman!

Actually, in my English grammar book I learnt, the author does indicate when a noun (i.e. man) is modified by a clause, I should use the article of 'the' instead of 'an'. When I was a student, my teacher of English also talked about this. I am not a student for many years, and I forget many grammatical rules and quite a lot of my vocabulary.

When smallwhite pointed out my mistakes, I instantly remembered that.

I highly appreciate if anyone can point out any grammatical mistakes or expressions which sound jarring in my texts. Thank you very much for your correction. :D
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby Deinonysus » Tue Oct 27, 2020 2:55 pm

I think you can use either "a waiter" or "the waiter", with a difference in meaning.

"I called a waiter as he passed by" - It could have been any one of many waiters and it didn't matter which one it was.

"I called the waiter as he passed by" - It had to be a specific waiter.

Notice that "passed" is spelled differently than "past" even though they are pronounced the same.
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby smallwhite » Tue Oct 27, 2020 5:26 pm

Deinonysus wrote:I think you can use either "a waiter" or "the waiter", with a difference in meaning.

"I called a waiter as he passed by" - It could have been any one of many waiters and it didn't matter which one it was.

"I called the waiter as he passed by" - It had to be a specific waiter.


I'm curious why you modified OP's sentence "I called a waiter as he was over there". What if you didn't?
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Re: English: Would someone please help me with my English?

Postby Deinonysus » Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:00 pm

smallwhite wrote:
Deinonysus wrote:I think you can use either "a waiter" or "the waiter", with a difference in meaning.

"I called a waiter as he passed by" - It could have been any one of many waiters and it didn't matter which one it was.

"I called the waiter as he passed by" - It had to be a specific waiter.


I'm curious why you modified OP's sentence "I called a waiter as he was over there". What if you didn't?

Oops, I misread his sentences and combined them! I'll take another look at the real sentences.

I looked at him as/when he past by me.

This is the one that said "past" instead of "passed". Otherwise it seems fine to me. Either "as" or "when" would work.

I called a waiter as he was over there.

I think this one would only work in British English, where "as" can mean "because", but that might be a different meaning that what was intended. Other than that, I think that "as" can only work for an action, not a state. So you could say "I looked at the rain as it fell", but you can't say "I looked at the rain as it was wet".

I think "I called a waiter while he was over there" might work. I don't see a problem with using "he" with "a waiter".

I called a waiter who was over there.

This seems fine to me.
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