0

I was watching a video on youtube and there was a line :

Until you made me think about how hard it is to be a good Santa, I thought I'd be a strong candidate for the job.

I thought that we should use the present tense and future tense here, as the situation happens in the future. So, in my opinion, it should be:

Until you make me think about how hard it is to be a good Santa, I thought I'll be a strong candidate for the job.

Can someone please explain why we use the past tense in this sentence? Also, as past tense is used here, shouldn't it be "how hard it WAS"? why is it "how hard it is"? Below is the link of the video, the line is at about 4:48

BBC learning english

  • 2
    In your opinion, one can only say the sentence in the present? If you refer to something someone did or said, you can use the past. There is no future here at all. There is only past except for the part of the sentence that is a general statement: how hard it is to be a good Santa. – Lambie Dec 23 '17 at 15:04
  • Thanks for your answer first. It says :"Until you made me think about how hard it is to be a good Santa, thought I'd be a strong candidate for the job." So he has not made the other one realized how hard it was to be a good Santa right? So nothing has happened yet, right? – Dennis Dec 23 '17 at 15:11
  • Dennis, why are you repeating the sentence to me?? It is in the past with a general statement in the present, which is very common in English. I realized (in the past) that children are happy when they are busy. A general statement. – Lambie Dec 23 '17 at 15:27
3

Until you made me think about how hard it is to be a good Santa, thought I'd be a strong candidate for the job.

Your sentence can be reordered and thus be made easier to comprehend:

I thought I would be a strong candidate for the job until you made me think how hard it is to be a good Santa.

The whole sentence, except for the part "how hard it is to be a good Santa", is in the past. If you think of until as a point after his thinking you will see that first 'I thought' and then 'you made me think' but still the thought is in the past.

  • No, the whole sentence is not in the past. The general statement is in the present: how hard it is to be a good Santa. – Lambie Dec 23 '17 at 15:28
  • 1
    @Lambie I understand it, yes. However, the sentence is still in the past. – SovereignSun Dec 23 '17 at 15:31

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.