Let's say your boss didn't know the whole story about a fight in your workplace. There was a fight that happened between your 2 co-workers and you broke up the fight. You have successfully stopped it. A few hours after that, your boss, who just clocked in, ignorantly asked you "why did you fight?" Then you annoyingly answered it by:

Seriously?! I AM the one who was breaking up the fight.


Seriously?! I WAS the one who was breaking up the fight.

This question pertains to expression-verb tense problem, what is correct?

  • I'm editing it now, yes, you're right. Thx – John Arvin Jan 31 at 3:50

The second feels better, but it's still awkward. And seriously? Starting off with an exclamation won't help your case if you're dealing with my boss. Of course, different bosses are different.

I was the one who broke up the fight.

  • nice, this is concise. – John Arvin Jan 31 at 3:52
  • Which is another good thing when dealing with an upset boss. :) – Ed Grimm Jan 31 at 4:12
  • +1 for the Human Resources aspect – user45266 Jan 31 at 5:11

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