GYG Day 8. Wonderful Wednesday Words. ‘Always’

Everyone enjoys a nag every now and again and what better than to get at your nearest and dearest.

“Matthew (my son), you’re always leaving your toys on the floor for Daddy to hoover up!” (Yes, I everytime do the hoovering at home).

Stop right there!! Hold those horses!!  Yes, I deliberately built in a typical German mistake into the last sentence. Of course, ‘everytime’ literally means  ‘always’ so use ‘always’  when you want to say ‘everytime’, if you get my drift.

Always is an adverb of frequency (AOF) – like normally, usually, etc. and as such describe how often something happens: “I always brush my teeth before I go to bed. “

Please, notice two things.

  1. The AOF mostly goes between the subject (I) and the verb (brush) except for in conjunction with the verb ‘to be’ . “I’m always on the last push for appointments.” Where the AOF comes after the ‘to be’ form.
  2. As AOF are often used when you want to talk about regular actions, routines and habits, they go hand in hand with present simple tense (I brush).

So back to the nagging. Did you see that I wrote “… you’re always leaving” as opposed to  “ …. you always leave “? This is an exception to the above rule because  you can use the present continuous with ‘always’, or similar words like  ‘constantly’, continually’, or ‘forever’, to emphasise that something is done so often that it is characteristic of a person, group or thing. We often use this pattern when you want to COMPLAIN. (Page 4) Advanced Grammar in Use. (Martin Hewings)*

a nag (Mecker), to get at sb (jdn auf den Pelz rücken),  your nearest and dearest (seine lieben), (staubsaugen), “Hold those horses” (Immer mit der Ruhe), deliberately (mit Absicht), to get sb’s drift (jdm folgen können), except for (außer), in conjunction with (in Verbindung mit), to be  on the last push (auf dem letzten Drücker sein),  appointments (Termine), habits (Gewohnheiten), to go hand in hand with (zusammengehören), as opposed to (anstatt), exception (Ausnahme), to emphasise (betönen)

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