Today I've come across a phrase and now I'm at a loss and confused a little bit.

It was:

  • I don't cook sushi because I got told off I was trying once.

It sounds very "English" and for a non-native speaker is a little bit unusual.

It is usual and common for you?

Or would you say the same thing in another way?

Also, can you explain me, why do we have " I got" rather than to have "I was told off", please?

(or: Can you explain me, why we have "I got" rather than to have "I was told off", please?)

Thank you!

  • Yeas, you are right. There are virtually two questions here. The second one is about the question "can you explain me...". What's the variant more appropriate?
    – user127880
    Jan 12, 2021 at 17:22
  • 1
    Your example is ungrammatical. Are you sure you stated it correctly?
    – ColleenV
    Jan 12, 2021 at 17:26
  • Mmm, it's possible that I'm mistaken. Can I share the link when I came across this phrase here? (It's a podcast.)
    – user127880
    Jan 12, 2021 at 17:29
  • 1
    Told off is a colloquial way of saying reprimanded, and using got rather than was makes it even more informal. Should it perhaps read 'when I was trying once'? Jan 12, 2021 at 17:42
  • @Kate Bunting Yeas, it could be with "when". It was really fast and difficult to understand. Can you also say a little bit about the change "got" and "was". When can we say so and when we can't, please?
    – user127880
    Jan 12, 2021 at 17:56

1 Answer 1


The correct way to say it is

I don't cook sushi because i got told off the first time i tried.


"Got" is a common daily-English usage in these cases. It means the same thing as using "was". While fine in daily speech, it would not do in formal writing or a formal presentation.

So you can use 'got' or 'was' it does not really matter

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