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This dialogue is from a TV series:

A: So sorry I am late.

B: Of course it happens... just would be careful being late to appointments with CA's office...


a- ... be careful about being late to appointments with CA's office...

b- ...be careful to be late to appointments with CA's office...

c- ... be careful when you are late to appointments with CA's> office...

Does the original phrase mean a or b or c or something else?

  • It sounds like it's highly elided: [You] just would [need to] be careful [about.] being late to appointments. – J.R. Aug 21 at 22:19
  • @J.R. Thank you. Is it okay to omit "about" in this phrase: "need to be careful being late to..." – Talha Özden Aug 21 at 22:44
  • You need to be careful using television shows to provide model speech patterns. – J.R. Aug 22 at 0:16
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The problem with this particular example is that any way you phrase it sounds wrong:
"being late to appointments" is bad. It's something to be avoided. So is being stung by bees. Consider:

"just be careful to be stung by bees"
"just be careful when you are being stung by bees"

No.

Rather, the emphasis ought to be on avoiding the situation entirely.

I would just be careful to never be late to appointments with CA's office.

I would just be careful, and make sure to be on time to appointments with CA's office.

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