Danny Clark's Posts (165)

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Well, here is your new task. This test is mostly on the nonfinite forms, but there are also some other mistakes. So, be attentive, please! You know what to do.

  1. You know English enough well so that you can write great blogs.
  2. My suit wanted to clean, so I went to the cleaner’s to remove the stain.
  3. Here my friend is coming whom I know since childhood.
  4. The first thing we should do was finding the place to stay not long.
  5. Coming in the room he saw lying on the table letter.
  6. Being read the story, we couldn’t help to laugh.
  7. I always leave my laboratory last.
  8. I knew my wife doesn’t approve that I work much.
  9. Sleeping for few hours, I felt refresh and decided posting this blog.
  10. After having been accused in all dead sins, even I don’t know whether posting this blog.

The deadline is the next Moday, April 3.

Have a nice week!

April 3

My friends, here are the correct sentences together with my explanations.

  1. You know English well enough to (be able to) write great blogs.
  2. My suit wanted cleaning, so I went to the cleaner’s to have/get the stain removed.
  3. Here comes my friend whom I have known since my childhood.
  4. The first thing for us to do was to find the place to stay not for long.
  5. Having come/After coming into the room he saw a letter lying on the table.
  6. Reading the story, we couldn’t help laughing.
  7. am always the last to leave my laboratory.
  8. knew/know my wife didn’t/doesn’t approve of my working much.
  9. After sleeping/Having slept for a few hours, I felt refreshed and decided to post this blog.
  10. Having been accused of all the deadly sins, I don’t even know whether to post this blog (or not).

Well, most of the sentences have already been explained in the separate blogs. So, I will explain only some constructions and details.

3. Honestly, I was really surprised you didn’t know what to do with it. I believe you all heard “Here is your coffee, here is your drink” and so on. It is the same structure. It is one of the inverted constructions with the full inversion like “There is, There lived..”, where we just transpose a subject and a verb. In this case, a verb is not used in the progressive tenses.

7. If we use some ordinals or  adjectives like LAST, NEXT meaning the sequence of actions, we use the following infinitive construction:

A subject + TO BE as a predicate+ the ordinal + the infinitive +……

For example:

You are the next to answer.

He is always the first to greet our newbies.

8. TO APPROVE must be followed by OF and the gerund/noun. If the gerund defines an action of a person different from the subject, this person must be mentioned before the gerund in the possessive form. For example:

I disapprove of my daughter’s coming home so late.

I would appreciate your informing me about the results.

9. TO DECIDE must be followed by the infinitive.

10. TO ACCUSE must be followed by the preposition OF and the gerund or the noun. What doesn’t live can’t be DEAD. We say DEADLY/MORTAL sins. EVEN is an adverb, its place is inside the compound predicate or before the verb if it is in the simple form.

Sure, you can ask me your questions, but I will be really happy if you read my explanatory blogs and practice there.

Thanks everyone for taking part!

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My Last Confession

As our dear Luci is my muse, she always inspires me to post something I have never expected to write!

Well, let’s consider this blog to be my reply to hers


But before I start, I’d like to tell you one EC secret. Two my best female EC friends, together with my wife are making plans to kill me. They would have killed me long ago, but, fortunately, they can’t agree on the murder weapon and I have a chance to live till May and to celebrate the 25th anniversary of meeting my beloved wife. So, my dearest daughter Evil Risty doesn’t want to stain her hands with my blood and she asked Tanya to shoot me down, while my inspiring muse Luci prefers to behead me with an axe with her own hands. Who knows, it might be her national tradition to get rid of boring men in such a way! As I have always been ready to accept the death from a woman and they kindly allowed me to say the last words, I’d like to confess to all my sins.

According to Luci, I am a braggart because I had the face plastic surgery after getting in the car crash. In her understanding it is one of my heavy sins. But my heaviest sin is being arrogant and able to start WWIII if I am disagreed with. Dear, would you like me to look like a fright and to scare others away? Would you like me to be mute? In this case, I have to be deaf, blind and … dead!

According to Risty, the heaviest sin of mine is my love for women. Dear, would you like me to love men? I am of traditional orientation. To love women is natural for a man.

According to me, my first sin is having been born! What the hell my parents thought about conceiving me? They should have gone on making their careers! My other sin is having got rid of their importunate guardianship as I wanted to live MY life and to make MY career in the field they didn't approve. My other sin is my love for women, but I have never felt like loving men! One more sin of mine is being well-educated in natural science and as a result, being atheistic, but I am led by common sense and knowledge and nothing is able to change it unless I witness any rapture. But my heaviest sin is to start teaching you being an ignoramus! Here are my last words for all my students: learn not to be as ignorant as me! Well, I am ready for execution and my last will is: let my executioner be Luci, let HER behead me! Let HER hands be stained with my blood! She is my muse, my unrequited love! I am done and ready to find the bluntest axe to suffer some longer!

And now, I propose you all to add my sins to the list so that I can find out which pit of hell I will get to.

Go ahead, guys, and remember that it is not serious at all, it is just to make your day, to make you smile or laugh out loudly!

Have great Sunday!

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Well, this lady is not shallow, she is dangerous, but so seducing although once she said she likes women more! I am unsure of what she meant, but it sounds even more tempting! Being a woman of moods, she can annihilate a man with one word or make him feel on the heaven! She has a razor-sharp tongue, whatever she says may hurt.  She is tough and sarcastic, she is atheistic and don’t you even try to say a word about being created by god at her presence! She is well-educated and will prove you to be the result of evolution. She seems to know much about art, she may be an artist. On the other hand, she is quite knowledgeable about science and may be a scholar. She is a mystery hiding behind her mask and it is so tempting to take her mask off and to see her true face! But, no, no, guys! We are not allowed to do it! We have to be happy with what we are expected to see! Hahaha! But I like this lady, she sometimes shows us her true nature that turns out to be so creative, thoughtful, humane and very friendly! She is the greatest Cat Lady of EC!

Who is she?

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She is still young but her points of view are so thoughtful and profound! When I read some of her blogs for the first time, I was just shocked! I wish my real students thought at least partially like her! She has very high moral standards, I would say she is such a perfectionist and I think she may suffer because of that as others may get her wrong. I think she may feel solitary and lonesome in her real life, but not here as we all adore this girl! Without any shadow of doubt, she is such a bright unordinary and positive personality that I am sometimes scared to leave my comments on her discussions. She might be the only one of my close EC friends who has avoided my sharp sarcasm and frivolous humor. People, I am afraid of her! She is so perfect that seems to be unreal! I always think if I say a wrong word, she may be gone like delightful illusion, like sweet dream, like last hope!

Who is she?

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First of all, I'd like to thank our dear Luci for this great opportunity! I think many of us are glad to tell about ourselves and to express our feelings to others. Well, here is one more story.

She is mature, thoughtful, prudent, full of common sense. Whatever discussion she replies, she always finds the right words to express her mind and not to offend anyone. Her opinions are always weighed and grounded. Her life experience helps her find the right answers whatever problems may be discussed. She enjoys enabling her grey cells learning new things. She is led by common sense and wits, she is atheistic but is tolerant to those who have faith. She has a good sense of humor, but her jokes are always soft and innocent, they are not expected to wound or hurt. She is womanly and gentle, mature and experienced, but is still young at heart. She is sensitive and romantic, a single indiscreet remark may hurt her and I seem to have made such a remark a few days ago. I am sincerely sorry if I did! I beg her pardon at her feet! You see, I have already started rhyming thinking about her as she is a brilliant poetess! If she writes such verses in English, I can only imagine what she can say in her native language! I take my hat off before this woman! She deserves much more attention, admiration and love! She is a true woman, a true friend, a great human being!

Who is she?

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My dear friends and students, dear Sir Josef, our dear admins! Although I have been EC member for not that long, I can't help expressing my admiration as I always do on the occation. I had never joined any social networks before my wife told me about EC. I had always thought it is just waste of time. But now I realize my delusion. Sir Josef created such a great site, such a great community of people holding the same views or, at least having the same purposes. It is the free space for learning, teaching, having fun, sharing our ideas. Unfortunately, we are not all like one and I am really sorry for those who don't realize all advantages of being a part of this great community. You all know what I mean and I am not going to retell my sad experience again. However, there is something new you may not know about. Here is one recent comment on my wall:

"At 17:18 on March 20, 2017, hassankhan said…

"We exist to make this world a better place" (laughing)well well well its good to see an American saying this after committing genocide (heinous crimes)and plundered other nations for their petty interests"

I'd like to ask this guy if he really thinks I am responsible for my government.  Is there still so much acrimony? I thought we are trying to make our world better!

That's it! I wanted to say something different. This month there have been a few blogs on EC matters that caused my attention. I can't help expressing my opinon! 

First, it is Dara's blog "A Member of the year". I  am so happy most of us agree: his idea is unacceptable. Wherever money is on the subject (even a penny), the community becomes corrupted. I think we should, have to award the best members, but money must be out of the question.

There has been one more blog I'd like to comment. Should we choose star members? Honestly, I don't know. When I just joined EC and posted  a few blogs about my land, I was immediatelly chosen a star member although my wife had been trying her best teaching EC learners for about 10 years. It was unfair. On the other hand, our newbies have to get some information about the most active members when they join EC. Well, i think if we want to be a peaceful community, we should not choose any leaders. We already have one, it is Josef and I will always agree if he reprimands me as I am one of you!

Thank you, EC, for making me master one more skill. If I am ever kicked off my uniiversity for being so frank and unihibited, I will start teaching English as now I know where to start from.

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Luci's Challenge: Who are we?

My friends, as I've got a great reply on my blog, I can't help sharing it with you together with my reaction. I hope, it will make you birst out in laughter if you don't even know its background. Sure, it is just a joke, don't take it serious!

My opponent posted her ideas this morning after my telling her I am Lucifer in  flash who wants to know her immost desires and can make her speak out her mind. Sure, I was kidding! So, my dear opponent replied to my blog "Who I am?":

Just look into my eyes and hear what I will tell you looking into the mirror.

Good Risty: He is so correct when he told you that you have a different orientation in life.

Evil Risty: ...but not to his humorous remarked that I prefer a girl. That was so gross! It’s not a foreign thing for me that he has a razor-sharp tongue, straightforward, and coldblooded!

Good Risty: He was just joking.

Evil Risty: No! He always finds comical in things I said, and most of the time, I thought he is not taking me seriously. Sometimes, I find him satirical.

Good Risty: Yes, I know. We started to ask ourselves “what have I done?”, “Is he angry at me? I didn’t get him”.

Evil Risty: I even thought, is this guy trying to belittle me?

Good Risty: Gosh! Stop that! It is us, who have done wrong, he was right. When will you learn?

Evil Risty: How will I learn? He’s showing me cold-shoulder!

Good Risty: No, he was busy and attending to all his students, he is not a robot.

Evil Risty: I can feel it, he is avoiding me.

Good Risty: shhhhhhh, Sir Danny is not like that.

Evil Risty: Give me reasons why you said so?

Good Risty: He helps a lot of people and very accommodating to his students.

Evil Risty: Oh yeah? But I can’t help to shake my head when he starts to tease the girls.

Good Risty: Listen. His talent is flourishing day by day here in myEC because he continually passing the legend to us, he opened himself to us and made us see how normal and cool life is.

Evil Risty: But he is an American guy, grrr..the attitude is superiority is evident.

Good Risty: You know, he is good at the thing he does and he is something else.

Evil Risty: You also know that, he can intimidate me and make me feel small, stupid, intimidated, and the lamest creature with regards to the English language.

Good Risty: Never mind that! That’s very small comparing to how big his contribution to us. He is a helping hand.

Evil Risty: I think he is weird when he claimed to be an atheist but he celebrated Christmas. :D

Good Risty: But he like music, like you do, he plays different instruments that you are so fascinated about. The mere fact that he sings will remind us that the guy still a human being with a soft heart. Plussss, his passion towards science and numbers are really awesome! I know you like that!

Evil Risty: I envy that! What do you expect he’s a Physics professor!

Good Risty: don’t you think he is funny, remember how he explained the difference between a professor and secondary teacher?!That was so funny!

And don’t try to deny, you are fond of his games and lessons here. :D

Evil Risty: Why are you defending him? He is a hard-headed guy! Who loves liquor even if he is sickly!

Good Risty: Enough! We respect him like our father and we wish him long life, so he can still teach us…

Evil Risty: ..and tear us!

Good Risty: It’s not an easy task, having diverse students and an incorrigible one like me- it is difficult.

Evil Risty: he is a Casanova!! Urgh!

Good Risty: You really like him, don’t you?

Evil Risty: I’ll ask Teacher Tanya to prepare the bow and arrow. :D He is the silliest guy I’ve ever met.

Good Risty: Oh boy! He will slice us into pieces if you don’t stop. C’mon lets’s just wish him good shape, physically fit condition, and…

Evil Risty: ..what, handsomeness???? (rolling eyes). Okay fine, I know nobody asked my opinion but geez, I’m entitled to it.

Good Risty: Let’s end this conversation. Even though I’m always critical towards him, my respect for him will never cease to exist. He will always be precious in my heart, one of my inspirations. Thank you, Sir Dan and peace be with you. :)..hey you! Smile!

Evil Risty: hhhhshhshs… smile!


Sure, I couldn't help replying such a hilarious, smart comment

Dear Risty, my razor-sharp forward tongue is ready to give you an uncensored answer in cool blood! Hahaha!

Episode 2 (in the bathroom this morning). Episode one is my blog "Who am I?"

Prudent Danny: "Well, buddy, I have always known your love for women would lead to no good! You see, you turn out to have two illegitimate kids and who knows how more you managed to make! And, of course, lack of father's attention made one of your daughters evil and malicious. It is all your fault! If you didn't take part in their upbringing, you have to pay more attention to their education!"

Reckless Danny: "Come on, old man! I am tired of your lecturing! You remind me of our father who had a lot of feathers on his snout, but also tried to make us perfect. And here we are! As a matter of fact, I like my evil daughter even more, she is a cute imp, she is MY daughter, my perfect genes!"

Prudent Danny: "How come you like her? She calls you the last words! She says you are a mucker, a womanizer, an alcoholic and even worse!"

Reckless Danny: "Don't you do the same? And since when having a few drinks has been considered as drinking much? And what do you do when I love women? Think about more suitable chemical compounds? You haven’t even noticed the birth of our kids as you are always head over heels with work. It is you who make me work round a clock! I just have no time for educating my kids! And, as a matter of fact, she calls you supercilious swank and she is right! Besides, she calls you physicist! So, when education is on the subject, it is your business as you are so smart, well-educated and practical! Leave me alone with my music!”

Prudent Danny: ”What do you mean? Should I educate your kids? Especially those who doubt about our orientation and believes? Just tell them, on December 25 we celebrate our wife’s birthday and it is more important for us than doubtful birth of some doubtful spirit! And tell them if we were of different orientation, we would hardly have natural kids!”

Reckless Danny: “What a surprise! You agree with me, those girls are OURS! OK, as there are two of us and two of them, let a good one be yours, but I am choosing my lovely imp! How great it is to suffer from bipolar disorder!”


I hope, we will have fun together!

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What a young lady she is! So versatile, so prominent, so adventurous and so daring! Perhaps, she doesn’t know how great she is. If she did, she wouldn’t spend so much time praying. God she prays endowed her with everything any girl can only dream about. He heard her prayers. My friends, what I am talking about? It is nature that endowed her with flexible body to dance so bewitching, a sharp tongue to argue with teachers, keen mind to parry my blows. If she likes, I will say that God only helped nature to create such a unique individual! She is great with all her advantages and shortcomings. I don’t want to think what may happen to her if she dares to step over the bar of her imaginary world and start living true life full of envy, hatred, anger and much, much more! She thinks to be ready for that, but I have a lot of doubts. Anyway, she is one of the best EC members, she is my snowflake. I do like her immaculate naivety that serves her as a protective screen.

So, who is she?

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Luci's Challenge: Who Is She?

She is a WOMAN, what else to say? Let me concentrate as thinking about her blows off my mind! She is a WOMAN, what a magic word! It is so comprehensive, so meaningful and so mysterious! She is a WOMAN in everything she does, even in choosing her avatars. They reflect her inner world and her mood. They tell us much more than they are supposed to! But let's leave them alone as there is much more to say. She is unique like any woman, but her uniqueness is so special! Her grim humor on the verge of sarcasm gladdens my ears and makes me roll on the floor laughing! Her unexpected discussions and challenges make me take health leaves to be able to enjoy replying. Her blunt, maybe a little weird fantasy makes her write fantastic verses and post incredible blogs and discussions. But nobody is perfect! Her irrepressible desire to gibe others, her sharp tongue I love so much may make others think she is such a she-devil, although I know exactly her other side is pure, loving, caring and responsible. Well, patience is not her virtue. She is sometimes ready to kill me for my pointing out to her grammar mistakes, but she always goes through that hell and comes out a winner! She is a woman I like, she is my muse, she is a WOMAN, A LADY, what else to add?

So, who is she? Hahaha!

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As I’d like to make this blog humorous, I will write a story.

Morning… 5 am. Most of ME is still sleeping, but some restless indefatigable part of ME is already up and wants me to do the same. No, no…. It is too early. I am lying still without opening my eyes unwilling to surrender the peaceful darkness. But that importunate part of me persists and gets its way. It makes me get up and feel my way to the bathroom. No sooner have I got there than I see somebody in the large mirror.

I ask: “Who are you?”

A stranger replies: “YOU”.

I wonder, really? The stranger says I need a cold shower and I agree without feeling like that at all. Then he makes me shave, do my hair and so on. I can’t help wondering why I am doing all that!!!! Looking at him again I suddenly realize I have already seen him and I ask if we have ever met before. The stranger starts laughing loudly and says:

“We have always been together, I am your best side, I am your obverse. Just look at me. I am handsome, physically fit and in a good shape, I look attractive and representative, I am a Harvard graduate and I am proud of being smart, well-round educated, professional and successful. But you are just an ungifted moke and bad composer, a mouse/couch potato, a rumpot on hangover. It is quite understandable you can’t recognize me. But I am YOU and don’t you even try to get rid of me ‘cause I will return as your endless remorse. Come to at last, your place is in your class and in your laboratory”.

Well, I tell you, I hate that stranger who always tells me what to do and keeps me under control. But I get into my car and drive 60 miles swearing just to enter my classroom and to say; “Morning, guys! Ready for the execution?” and to hear their infectious laughter, to see their shining eyes, to feel their thirst for knowledge. That moment I understand that stranger in the mirror, yes, he is the best side of mine. But the other side, the reverse, is not going to surrender! Life is endless fight with ourselves and there will never be any winner.

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My friends, dear learners, I am really happy to see you are trying to do your best correcting my horrible sentences. But I also see that no one knows how to say the sentence 8 correctly. So, here are my explanations.

If we use the verbs TO WANT/NEED after a subject defining a living thing, they are always followed by the infinitive.  But if a subject is non-living thing, these verbs are followed by the gerund. Here are some examples:

She wants to know the details.

You need somebody to give you some explanations.

Our house needs cleaning.

My car wants washing.

I believe, it is clear. 

Now, if we mean that we will do something ourselves, we use the active voice.

I want to fix the engine.

I'd like to check the oil.

It means I will do it myself. However, if we mean that those actions will be done by somebody else (first of all, by different services), we should say:

I want to have the engine fixed.

I'd like to have the oil checked.

I need to have my hair cut.

I must have this stain removed.

You may ask me why and I will answer your expected question. If I come to the barbery and say "I want to cut my hair", some impolite barber may answer "So, do it! Why have you come here?"

Do you see the difference now?

Well, I know that many of you have Master degrees and write articles or books. You WRITE them yourselves, but it is a publishing house that publish them. So, we should say:

I have written many articles


I have many articles published.

And now, I am ready to answer all your questions and will be happy to see your examples.


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My friends, I am posting my regular grammar test as I usually do at the beginning of the weekend. If you are tired of my tests, just tell me, but I see you are learning and most of you started writing much better as I do read your blogs and comments on different discussions. So, let's go on learning if you like.

This test is not as easy as the previous one. You should pay attention to the word order, the nonfinite forms of the verbs, the tenses, voices, prepositions, articles, comparisons, and some other grammar constructions. I have changed the sentences beyond recognition. So, if you don't understand meaning of some sentence, just ask me to explain it before making corrections. It is senseless to correct the mistakes if you hardly understand what it is about.

Well, there you go!

  1. I don’t mind to help you, but I object you bother me when I am busy with my working.
  2. Walking about half a mile they came to nice house being surrounded with tall wall.
  3. I saw his not understanding the rule and explain it once again.
  4. Being scared boy sat in the corner realizing hardly where was he and what was going around.
  5. The question was very unexpecting that I could not answer to it.
  6. We were sure parcel delivering on time to her birthday.
  7. We didn’t see him for many years, but always we heard his name mentioning by his parents.
  8. I knew my watch need to be fixed but I could not fix it as all the repair shops closed.
  9. No sooner he returned from work when he again started to call the office.
  10. His house is twice roomier than my, but I like my house the best despite all.

I believe you all know what to do! The deadline is March 27.

Have a great weekend!

March 27.

Hi, my friends, I am posting the answers.

  1. 1.      I don’t mind helping you, but I object to your bothering me when I am busy working/with my work.
  2. Having walked/After walking about half a mile they came (up) to the nice house __ surrounded by the tall wall.
  3. I saw him not understand the rule so/and I explained it once again.
  4. The scared boy was sitting in the corner hardly realizing where he was and what was going on around.
  5. The question was too unexpected for me to answer __ (it)/ The question was so unexpected that I couldn’t answer __ (it)
  6. We were sure of the parcel’s being/having been delivered in time for her birthday/We were sure the parcel would be/had been delivered in time for her birthday.
  7. We hadn’t seen him for many years, but __always heard his name mentioned by his parents.
  8. I knew my watch needed fixing, but I could not have it fixed as all the repair shops were closed.
  9. No sooner had he returned from work then he started calling the office again.
  10. His house is twice as roomy as mine, but in spite of that I like my house more.

And here are my explanations as usual.

  1. Both verbs TO MIND and TO OBJECT TO must be followed by the gerund. TO BE BUSY is directly followed by the gerund (without the preposition) or by the noun after the preposition WITH. If the gerund relates to the person different from the subject, its possessive form must precede the gerund.
  2. “They came….” is the main clause. So, the first part must be either the gerund or the participle phrase. Sure,”….. the house that was surrounded by the wall”. But using the additional subordinate clause is makes the sentence sound unnatural. It is much better to use the appropriate participle SURROUNDED.
  3. The verbs to see, to hear, to watch, to feel, to listen, to notice and some others are followed by the infinitive without “TO”. Of course, there must be a subject and the past tense in the second clause. If the infinitive relates to the person different from the subject, its objective form must precede the infinitive without FOR.
  4. The boy was scared. So, we can say “The scared boy”. HARDLY is an adverb used inside a predicate. So, if we use it with the participle (like in this sentence) or with the infinitive, it must precede them. TO GO ON is an idiom meaning TO HAPPEN.
  5. In this sentence, the construction of the second part depends on the adverb before UNEXPECTED. I have underlived the correct combinations. The first option is better, as it is more common to use the infinitive after EXPECT.
  6. As you see, we can say the second part of the sentence using the gerund or the subordinate clause. As always, using a nonfinite form is much better. Well, we don’t know when her birthday was. So, it can be either simple form of the gerund in we mean the future in the past or its perfect form if her birthday was some time before. ON TIME means punctually. For example: “We agreed to meet at 6 pm sharp and he came on time”. It means he came at 6 am sharp. So, IN TIME is better in this sentence as we mean the postal service.
  7. First, it is needless to repeat the subject in the second part of this sentence. Besides, TO HEAR is one of the verbs followed by the infinitive. However, it is the passive voice. In this case, we use the past participle.
  8. I explained it in the separate blog.
  9. If we start the sentence with NO SOONER, we should invert the predicate. As a rule, it is the perfect tense. NO SOONER is comparative, so the conjunction must be THAN. TO START is followed by the gerund.
  10. We use “.. as…. as” in the comparisons with multipliers. We speak about TWO houses, so an adverb must be in the comparative degree. Now, there is no such an expression DESPITE ALL. We can say “in spite of all, in spite of that or despite everything”. In this sentence, IN SPITE OF THAT is the best choice.

Sure, you can ask my your questions. Thanks everyone for participation!

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Today I will tell you about illogical comparisons and how to avoid this mistake.

An illogical comparison is one in which unlike entities have been compared.

Here are the examples of the illogical comparisons, they all are incorrect:

His drawings are as perfect as his instructor.

(This sentence compares drawings with instructor).

The duties of a policeman are more dangerous than a teacher.

(This sentence compares the duties with a teacher).


So, when you use a comparison, be sure that you compare the same items. It is quite easy to avoid this mistake saying all the words in the second part of the comparison:

I will show you what I mean:

His drawings are as perfect as the drawings of his instructor.

The duties of a policeman are more dangerous than the duties of a teacher.

Now, you can see, that the subjects are repeated in both parts of the comparisons. Sure, tautology never makes any sentence better. So, to avoid tautology, we replace the second subject by THAT/THOSE or by a possessive form of a noun if there is a possessive in the main clause:

His drawings are as perfect as his instructor’s.

(instructor's = instructor’s drawings)

The duties of a policeman are more dangerous than those of a teacher.

(those of = the duties of)

Here are some examples of logical comparisons:

John’s car runs better than Mary’s.

(Mary’s = Mary’s car)

The climate of Florida is as mild as that of California.

(that of = the climate of)

Classes in the university are more difficult than those in the college.

(those in = the classes in)

The basketball games at the university are better than those at the high school.

(those at = the games at)

Your accent is not as strong as my mother’s.

(my mother’s = my mother’s accent)

Here is one more detail. Sometimes, we can see that we repeat both a subject and a verb if we say the full comparison.

Incorrect: I feel better today than yesterday.

(This sentence compares feeling with the day)

Full: I feel better today than I felt yesterday.

In this case, we replace the second verb by the appropriate auxiliary.

Correct: I feel better today than I did yesterday.


And now, I will be happy to answer your questions and to see your examples. Go ahead, my friends!

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My friends, reading your answers on my tests, your comments and blogs, I see you don’t always use these verbs correctly. So, I will explain them.

USED TO + the infinitive. We use it when we want to say that we had some habit in the past, but we don’t have it now.

I used to smoke (It means I smoked but quitted. I don’t smoke now).

When young I used to visit the swimming pool almost every day (I don’t do it now).

This verb is used only in the simple past tense when we speak about our lost habits NOW.

TO BE USED TO + the gerund/noun. We use it meaning our habits we had and still have.

I am used to smoking much (I have always smoked much).

I am used to swimming every day (I have always swum every day).

This verb can be used in the present and the past tenses.

When I met her, she was used to being a leader (that time she was a leader as well as before).

I knew he was used to going to bed late (He went to bed late that time and before).

TO GET USED TO + the gerund/noun.  We say so if we mean that we get accustomed to something. We can use this verb is all the tenses.

He is getting used to being a father (his wife has just delivered a baby, he hasn’t known how it feels!).

She got used to the American lifestyle for long (it took her long to accept American lifestyle, but she accepted it in the end).

I hope, you will get used to my kidding at class sooner or later (I think I don’t have to explain, you all have a great sense of humor! HAHAHA!)

As always, I will be happy to answer your questions and to see your examples.

Have a great week!

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My friends, as you all have problems correcting these sentences on my last test, I will give you some explanations.

CAN'T HELP + the gerund means that a person is not able to stop/prevent himself from doing something.

I can't help working all the time (it means that I can't live without working. I have to work, I can't stop).

I can't help remembering what he did (I still remember, I can't forget).

Being in NYC I couldn't help visiting the Museum of Modern Art again (I couldn't stop myself from going there. I say COULD as it was some time ago).

Do you need more examples?

NO LONGER means "not any more" and is placed inside a compound predicate, mostly in the future tenses:

She will no longer call me (She will not call me any more/longer).

He said he would no longer date her (he wouldn't date her any more).

As usual, I will be happy to answer your questions and to read your examples.

Thanks for your attention!

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My friends, I said that test XIII would be the last on the intermediate level. I am not superstitious and I am used to keeping my word, so my next test is a little bit different. It is not that difficult, but it supposes you to know nonfinite verbs, usage of the modal auxiliaries in the past, the comparisons. This time I will not tell you the number of mistakes in each sentence. Just make them correct without changing their meaning.

  1. He thought he couldn’t help to call her after them to quarrel.
  2. I knew he used to get up early and I called to him on 6 am.
  3. I knew there should have been some mistakes in her writing as I couldn’t have got her idea.
  4. His injuring body proved his being a victim of assault.
  5. These shoes are tightest that I need.
  6. The sooner will you start out, the early you will get to the place for destination.
  7. I thought there would be cool no longer this spring.
  8. The salary of a professor is higher than secretary.
  9. The described above rule must give you an idea what I mean.
  10. He had nothing to do but he bought an air ticket.

As usual, the deadline is the next Monday, March 20.

Have a great weekend!

March 20

Dear friends, today is Monday and I am posting the answers.

  1. He thought he wouldn’t be able to stop/prevent himself from calling her after their quarrel.
  2. I knew he was used to getting up early and I called__ him at 6 am.
  3. I knew there must have been some mistakes in her writing as I couldn’t get her idea.
  4. His injured body proved him to be a victim of an assault.
  5. These shoes are tighter than those I need.
  6. The sooner __ you start out, the sooner/earlier you (will) get to the place of destination.
  7. I thought it would no longer be cool this spring.
  8. The salary of a professor is higher than that of a secretary.
  9. The rule described above must (should) give/must have given you an idea of what I mean/meant.
  10. He had nothing (else) to do but to buy an air ticket.


Here are some explanations as I explained almost all the mistakes in my blogs.

3. The idea of this sentence is obvious. I couldn’t understand what the author had meant because there were many mistakes. So, MUST HAVE BEEN is the best choice.

4. It is more natural to use the infinitive after TO PROVE.

6. You all corrected it, so I don’t know what to explain.

9. I see you all dislike participles. Although I posted two blogs on this subject, only a few learners read them and practiced a little. So, a participle phrase (DESCRIBED ABOVE) should follow a noun (RULE) but not precede it.

10. We use this infinitive construction meaning there is no other choice.

As usual, you can ask me your questions. Thanks for participation!

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Happy Women's Day!

Dear ladies! Take my sincere congratulations on International Women’s Day and let me express all my admiration and respect for you all and each of you! You accomplish daily feats living with us, raising our kids, taking care of us, sharing all our hopes and sorrows, being our muses, our true reliable friends, our most secure fortresses! No man can ever do enough to return your kindness and love! We do love and respect you, your uniqueness, your exceptionality, your independence, you different points of view, your irresistible desire to make us better!

Your heroic deeds deserve to be immortalized by the greatest artists and musicians, they must be glorified by the greatest singers and poets! I take off my hat before you all and each of you! Thank you so very much for being around making this world a desirable place to live!

Let the best singers tell you about our feelings!






Happy holiday and may you be loved and cherished all year round!

Результат пошуку зображень за запитом "весенние цветы открытки"

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My friends, I’ve decided to post this blog to explain some places in my last tests. Let’s start with TO BE SORRY. I think you all know that TO BE SORRY can be followed either by the gerund or by the infinitive. However, meaning of a phrase will be different.

  1. If we use the simple form of the infinitive, it means that we are about to do something.
  2. If we use the gerund, it means that we are doing it or have already done it.
  3. If we use the perfect form of the infinitive, it means that we have already done it.

For example:


I am sorry to interrupt you (I am about to interrupt someone and excuse myself in advance).

I am sorry for interrupting you (I have already interrupted and started expressing my mind).

I am sorry to have interrupted you (Most probably I have already expressed my mind).


Here is one more example.  Let’s imagine some insurance claim:

Opening :
I am sorry to disappoint you, but I do not agree with your claim. Let me explain.

Middle (after some debate):
I am sorry for disappointing you, but as I have explained, I do not accept that you have suffered any loss.

Ending (when the debate was over):
I am sorry to have disappointed you, but I am sure that you understand my reasons.

In most of case, there is almost no difference between 2 and 3.


I am sorry for forgetting about your birthday.

I am sorry to have forgotten about your birthday.


Both sentences are correct and mean the same. However, we can’t use the simple form of the infinitive in this sentence as I have already forgotten about the birthday.

Now, let’s consider usage of TO TRY with the gerund and the infinitive.

  1. If this verb is followed by the infinitive, it means the attempt doomed from the start or failed.
  2. If this verb is followed by the gerund, it means the attempt may be successful.

For example:


I am trying to teach you (I mean it is almost hopeless, hahaha!)

I am trying teaching you (I mean you may learn something from my tests and explanations).


I’d also like to give some explanations about TILL/UNTIL/UNTIL AFTER.

In fact, TILL and UNTIL are the same. TILL is a shortened informal form for UNTIL. They both mean UP TO some moment. However, we use them differently in the sentences.

TILL is mostly followed by a noun phrase.


I worked from 9 am till 6 pm.

She waited for me till midnight.


UNTIL may be followed by a noun phrase or a clause. It is a time clause, so we don’t use the future tenses in it.


I had been reading until I went to sleep.

I'll stay here until you come back.
We have to wait until he arrives.


As you see, all my examples are affirmative. So, I’d like to pay your special attention to meaning of UNTIL in the negative sentences. If the main clause is negative, UNTIL means NOT BEFORE. Please, pay attention to the tenses.


We couldn’t start making laundry until the washing machine had been fixed.

He didn’t offer us the drinks until we had finished eating.

I can’t read the newspaper until I find my glasses.

She will not start cooking until I return.


Now, about UNTIL AFTER. It is used after the negative main clause and is almost the same as UNTIL. It means ONLY AFTER. It starts a time clause, where we don’t use the future tenses.


She couldn’t find the classroom until after class had begun (She found the classroom after the beginning of the lecture).

She didn’t agree to marry me until after I had changed (But she agreed after I had changed).

Don’t start doing it until after I call (You should start doing it after my call).


And now, I am ready to answer your questions and will be just happy to see your examples.

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My friends, here is one more intermediate test for you and this time, it will be the last. I have already explained almost all such mistakes. This test is the same as previous: the tenses, the voices, the articles, the prepositions, GO/COME, TAKE/BRING. Sure, there may be some other mistakes, so, just be attentive. You know what to do!

Here is your task:

  1. I have asked where did she put my briefcase as I could not find it for long (5 mistakes).
  2. Cigarette smoked in ashtray because it not put out (4).
  3. I knew she couldn’t accept my proposal until I am changed (3).
  4. The letter couldn’t deliver as the address written illegible (3).
  5. When puppy was taken home, it hardly was turned 3 month old (6).
  6. When we got to the car, she recalled, she forgot her purse home and asked me come back and take it (7).
  7. While she was out, her pets took care by their neighbor (4).
  8. Despite she lived in NYC for many years, she was sorry yet to go away of her hometown (6).
  9. I hoped all snacks were not eat our guests and something must leave (5).
  10. All mistakes already are explained, many tests are done. What else explain you? (5)

The deadline is March 13.

And I do want to ask you, what parts of the intermediate grammar are not clear, yet. Please, tell me and I will post my explanations.

Good luck and have a great weekend!

March 13

Hi, everyone! I am posting the answers and my explanations. You know, you may ask me your questions.

  1. I ___ asked where she had put my briefcase as I had not been able to find it for long (5 mistakes).
  2. A cigarette smoked in the ashtray because it had not been put out (4).
  3. I knew she wouldn’t be able to accept my proposal until after I changed (4).
  4. The letter couldn’t be delivered as the address had been written illegibly (3).
  5. When the puppy was brought home, it had hardly turned 3 months old (6).
  6. When we got into the car, she recalled, she had forgotten her purse at home and asked me to go back and to bring it (7).
  7. While she was away, her pets were being taken care of by her neighbor (4).
  8. Despite living in NYC for many years, she was still sorry __ to have come (or for coming) away from her hometown (6).
  9. I hoped all the snacks hadn’t been eaten by our guests and something must have been left (5).
  10. All the mistakes have already been explained, many tests have been done. What else to explain you? (5)

Well, here are my explanations.

  1. We always use a reporting verb in the simple tense. Both actions had been before I asked my question. Sure, COULD has no tenses. But we can replace it with TO BE ABLE and to use it in the past perfect tense.
  2. A cigarette hadn’t been put out. It was lying in the ashtray smoking. However, it is a complex sentence where one of the verbs must be in the simple tense. TO PUT OUT means TO EXTINGUISH.
  3. I think it is one of the hardest. The idea of this sentence is following: I asked her to marry me but she said she would agree only after I changed. So, the reported speech is in the future past. As I have already told you, we don’t usually use the perfect tenses in the time clauses speaking about the future.
  4. It is easy. Somebody had written the address so illegibly that a mailman couldn’t read it and couldn’t deliver a letter. The sentence is in the passive voice.
  5. The puppy was BROUGHT home as it became its home since then. That time it was 3 months old. So, it had hardly turned 3 months old BEFORE it was brought home. Besides, we use an adverb inside a compound predicate.
  6. She had forgotten to take her purse and recalled that fact when we got into the car. So, she asked me to GO BACK home (I was moving from her and from our car) and to BRING it (on my way back I was moving toward her and our car).
  7. TO BE OUT means to leave not for long. In this case, there is no need to take care of the pets. So, if she asked her neighbor to look after her pets, she was going TO BE AWAY (in some other town) for some time. It is clear she was planning to be back. So, the neighbor was asked to take care of the pets for some short period. It is the past progressive tense, the passive voice.
  8. New York was not her hometown. She had been born somewhere else. So, living in NY she was sorry for coming away (or to have come away) from her hometown to NY. Now, DESPITE (IN SPITE OF) is followed by a noun/gerund phrase while ALTHOUGH is followed by a clause.
  9. Yesterday/the day before we had a party with a lot of snacks. Our guests ate much. So, in the morning I could only hope they left us something to eat. The sentence is in the passive voice.
  10. Well, you know I mean myself. So, I have explained everything by NOW. And it is the passive voice.

Thanks everone! I hope, it was useful!

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My dear learners, dear friends, I do hope it will be the last intermediate test so that we could move off this dead point. I have explained almost all about the tenses, the voices and many other moments and if you read my explanations attentively, you shouldn't fail in this test. As usual, most of the mistakes are the tenses, the voices, the articles and the prepositions. However, this time I have added some new "mistakes" as I was asked to explain them. So, in these sentences, you can also change COME/GO, TAKE/BRING and I will see if you need the detailed explanations on this subject. 

So, here is your new task.

  1. The bridge above the canal blew up many years ago, but we climbed to what was remained (7 mistakes).
  2. He asked would his companions are ready follow him as they didn’t prepare to the expedition enough good (7).
  3. The dark room only lighted with dying fire at the fireplace (5).
  4. She thought she will deliver baby before he would go back and couldn’t see the birth of his firstborn (5).
  5. I asked can she take her husband at my party I was going to have the next week (4).
  6. When my dog caught cold after I brought her to swim with me on the cool water few days ago, I decided I’d better don’t take days out (6).
  7. Either of us are not planning to come on vacation in Europe soon (5).
  8. He didn’t know where was she. She left not say word (5).
  9. Did rain stopped or is it still going?  (4).
  10. If you will find this test too difficult, I am going to give you  any explanations (only 3 mistakes! I do have some mercy on you! (Hahaha!).

How do you like it? I have done my best to make as many mistakes as I could!

I think I have to explain about the number of mistakes. If a verb is in the wrong tense and wrong voice, there are two mistakes. If this verb is one of come/go,  take/bring and it is wrong, it is one more mistake. On the other hand, if I have used the inverted order instead of the direct, it is one mistake although you may have to add one more word (if/whether). You know, you can always ask me your questions if something is not clear enough.

The deadline is the next Monday, March 6.

Have a geat weekend!


Hi, my friends! Today is a deadline for this test. So, here are the answers and explanations. As usual, you can ask my your questions if something is not clear enough.

  1. The bridge over/across the canal had been blown up many years before, but we climbed up to what had remained (7 mistakes).
  2. He asked if/whether his companions were ready to follow him as they hadn’t prepared for the expedition well enough (7).
  3. The dark room was being lighted only by the dying fire in the fireplace (5).
  4. She thought she would have delivered a baby before he came back and he wouldn’t be able to see the birth of his firstborn (5).
  5. I asked if/whether she would be able to bring her husband to my party I was going to have the next week (4).
  6. When my dog caught (a) cold after I had taken her to swim with me in the cool water a few days ago, I decided I had better not take days off (6).
  7. Neither of us is __ planning to go for a vacation to Europe soon (5).
  8. He didn’t know where she was. She had left without saying a word (5).
  9. Has the rain stopped or it is still coming/falling/raining?  (4).
  10. If you __ find this test (to be) too difficult, I will give you some explanations (3).

And here are my explanations.

  1. We usually say “the bridge over the canal but across the river”. However, ACROSS is correct in any case. The bridge can’t blow up itself, somebody should help it! Haha! So, it is the passive voice. It had been many years before we climbed up to its ruins. So, it is the past perfect tense. TO REMAIN is an intransitive verb. So, it must be in the active voice and in the past perfect tense as the ruins had remained till that moment.
  2. It is a reported general question and I see you have already learned this rule. I will not explain again. Well, a man asked about readiness of his companions to follow him. The actions are simultaneous, the verb TO BE must be in the past simple tense. When he asked, they were already on their way not being well-prepared. So, they hadn’t prepared for the expedition before. Now, we do use adjectives as modifiers of action after some verbs, but TO PREPARE is not one of them. So, it must be WELL. The word ENOUGH is used before nouns, but after adjectives and adverbs.
  3. It is clear that the fire was lighting the room that moment. So, this verb must be in the passive voice, in the progressive tense. I think, the other mistakes are clear.
  4. I have explained such sentences many times. There must be the future in the past, perfect tense as one action was expected to before two others. We don’t use CAN describing the future ability. It must be TO BE ABLE TO.  Besides, a man was expected to COME back to the place where his wife was.
  5. It is a reported general question and you all corrected that mistake. Again, we speak about the action in the future past and should use TO BE ABLE TO. She was supposed to COME to my party together with her man. So, I asked if she would be able to BRING him.
  6. We can say CATCH COLD or CATCH A COLD, both are correct. Sure, my poor dog started sneezing after swimming in the cool water. Boats, ships, rafts are ON the water, but people, animals are IN the water. It was I who went to the river with her. So, I TOOK her there. And, of  course, it had been before she caught cold. Also, we say I HAD BETTER NOT DO something. And, of course, when we don’t work on some weekday, we have/take a day OFF.
  7. I have already explained it. In the negative sentences we MUST use negative words as a subject. NEITHER means none of two and it is singular. Now, we do something ON a vacation, but we go somewhere FOR a vacation. Again, we stay/live IN some country, but we go TO some place.
  8. It is not a question, so there must be the direct word order. If he didn’t know where she was, it is obvious that she had left before. She didn’t say anything.  So, we can say WITHOUT SAYING A WORD.
  9. The second verb is in the present progressive tense. It means that I am asking if it is raining now. So, the first verb must be in the present perfect tense as I am asking if it has stopped by NOW. Also, there can be only one inversion in a question and it must be at the beginning. The rain/snow can’t GO! It falls down from the sky to the earth where we live. So, it COMES!
  10. We don’t use the future tenses in the conditional clauses. I have already explained that “I am going to” sounds VERY uncertain. I mean that I promise to explain. The verb must be in the future simple tense. And, of course, I mean the proper explanations, but not ANY I like. We use SOME in most of affirmative sentences.

Thank you all for participating and learning!

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