UNIT 4. Present continuous and present simple (2) (I am doing and I do)
A. We use continuous tenses only for actions and happenings (they are eating/it is raining etc.).
Some verbs (for example, know and like) are not action verbs. You cannot say 'I am knowing' or ,they are liking'; you can only say 'I know', 'they like'.
The following verbs are not normally used in continuous tenses:
like love hate want need prefer know realise suppose mean understand believe remember belong contain consist depend seem
* I'm hungry. I want something to eat. (not 'I'm wanting')
* Do you understand what I mean?
* Ann doesn't seem very happy at the moment.
When think means 'believe', do not use the continuous:
* What do you think (= believe) will happen? (not 'what are you thinking')
but * You look serious. What are you thinking about? (= What is going on in your mind?)
* I'm thinking of giving up my job. (= I am considering)
When have means 'possess' etc., do not use the continuous (see Unit 17):
* We're enjoying our holiday. We have a nice room in the hotel. (not 'we're having')
but * We're enjoying our holiday. We're having a great time.
B. See hear smell taste
We normally use the present simple (not continuous) with these verbs:
* Do you see that man over there? (not 'are you seeing')
* This room smells. Let's open a window.
We often use can + see/hear/smell/taste:
* Listen! Can you hear something?
But you can use the continuous with see (I'm seeing) when the meaning is 'having a meeting with' (especially in the future--see Unit 19A):
* I'm seeing the manager tomorrow morning.
C. He is selfish and He is being selfish
The present continuous of be is I am being/he is being/you are being etc.
I'm being = 'I'm behaving/I'm acting'. Compare:
* I can't understand why he's being so selfish. He isn't usually like that. (being selfish = behaving selfishly at the moment)
but * He never thinks about other people. He is very selfish. (not 'he is being') (= he is selfish generally, not only at the moment)
We use am/is/are being to say how somebody is behaving. It is not usually possible in other sentences:
* It's hot today. (not 'it is being hot')
* Sarah is very tired. (not 'is being tired')
D. Look and feet
You can use the present simple or continuous when you say how somebody looks or feels now:
* You took well today. or You're looking well today.
* How do you feel now? or How are you feeling now?
but * I usually feel tired in the morning. (not 'I'm usually feeling')
4.1 Are the underlined verbs right or wrong? Correct the ones that are wrong.
1. I'm seeing the manager tomorrow morning. RIGHT
2. I'm feeling hungry. Is there anything to eat? --- wrong, I feel hungry
3. Are you believing in God? --- wrong, do you believe in God? no Iím an atheist
4. This sauce is great. It's tasting really good. --- - wrong, it tastes really good.
5. I'm thinking this is your key. Am I right? --- wrong, I think
4.2 Look at the pictures. Use the words in brackets to make sentences. (You should also study Unit 3 before you do this exercise.)
1. (you/not/seem/very happy today) You don't seem very happy today.
2. (what/you/do?) ---what are you doing?
Be quiet! (I/think) ---Iím thinking
3. (who/this umbrella/belong to?) --- To whom does this umbrella belong ?
I've no idea.
4. (the dinner/smell/good) ---The dinner smells good.
5. Excuse me. (anybody/sit/here?) ---Is anybody sitting here?
No, it's free
6. Can you ring me back in half an hour? (I/have/dinner) ---Iím having dinner
Date: 2016-03-03; view: 296