0

I know that the usual way is:

He calls me every Saturday.

But I think "He is calling me every Saturday" must mean something. My assumption is that it can mean:

a) He spends every Saturday all day calling me.

b) He is calling me every Saturday for now. (it's going to end in the foreseeable future)

What is your take on it?

PS: I decided to add this question.

Let's imagine that the person calls every Saturday non-stop from 00.01 till 23.59 (I know it's almost impossible but it's not the point). Wouldn't it be the continuous? "He is calling me every Saturday".

2
  • 1
    What did you find when you researched that sentence? How was it used? Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 18:22
  • I found the lack of knowledge on my part in regards to what the meanings of this sentence can be
    – user1425
    Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 18:29

3 Answers 3

2

Option a) is wrong. Option b) is correct, for example in this context it would be suitable to use "He is calling me [...]":

"Why are you blocking James?" "He is calling me every Saturday! I wish he would just leave me alone"

The assumption being that at some point James will stop. And as @fev noted, this would imply annoyance. However it doesn't always have to, it can just be used to convey something happening in a temporary state as you suggested. For example:

"I've been in hospital for ages now. James is calling me every Saturday, it's very sweet of him."

It is worth noting though that in both examples you can substitute in the alternate version ("he calls me every Saturday") and the meaning would be unchanged.

6
  • Do you think that a is wrong because it's a highly improbable meaning in the framework of real life situations or is it because it doesn't bear this meaning technically?
    – user1425
    Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:02
  • 2
    Option a) is wrong because "He is calling me every Saturday" implies nothing about the length of the calls, whether they are short, long, or last all day. Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:19
  • At first glance yes, but here is another example. "I have dinner at 8." - means I start, a short action. "I am having dinner at 8" - a longer action. Or another one "I am reading this book all day today" - a long action "I read this book all day today" - doesn't work
    – user1425
    Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:27
  • I would disagree personally, I don't think "I am having dinner at 8" implies the dinner will be a longer one. Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:29
  • 1
    Also just a note - using "read" in your second example is confusing because it can be pronounced "r-eh-d" (past tense) or "r-ee-d" (present tense) 😂. Your second example works in the past tense but not in the present tense. Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:42
1

Present continuous can be used to show annoyance. I can only understand your sentence:

He is calling me every Saturday.

as a complaint.

Sometimes, English speakers use the present continuous verb form to express annoyance or complain about a repeated action or habit. Alone, this verb form does not express negative emotion. It must be used with adverbs that mean “all the time,” such as "always" “constantly" or “continually.” (Learning English)

1

"He calls" is present tense. It is an action that is happening now.

"He is calling" is present continuous tense. It is an ongoing action.

The difference can be very subtle, like here. By saying "every Saturday" you explicitly say that it is something that he does regularly. It is not a one-time event. "Is calling" also indicates that it is something that happens regular. So the use of the present continuous could be unnecessary. But in this case, it is probably being used for emphasis. The speaker indicates that this is something that is going on regularly in two ways. So he or she is emphasizing that this person is calling repeatedly. Without more context, I would guess that he is harassing or annoying the speaker by his repeated calls.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .