Grammar Guru: If Congress will pass/ passes/ passed

If Congress will pass/ passes/ passed the health care bill, US citizens will finally have universal access to health coverage.

The same health care bill (Gesetzesvorlage) has to be passed by both the House and the Senate. Right now the two chambers are still working on separate bills: “Now that the Senate has caught up with the House by passing a sweeping health care bill, lawmakers are on the verge of extending coverage to the tens of millions of Americans who have no health insurance… There are still many gaps to bridge between the House and Senate bills.” (NYT)

There is a great deal of public criticism whenever freedom of choice is affected. We will have to wait and see how the final bill is passed and then put into practice.

Grammar Guru: Predictions

Last week: I’m ready to leave to go on a trip, so I say

  • I am going to Poznań this weekend. (80%, 16 Votes)
  • I will go to Poznań this weekend. (20%, 4 Votes)
  • I go to Poznań this weekend. (0%, 0 Votes)
    More here.

This week: Which of these predictions is correct English and most probable?

  • It could freeze next week
  • It’s likely to freeze next week.
  • It might freeze next week.
  • It’s probable to freeze next week.

Grammar Guru: Talking about plans

I’ve been living in Giesing since I came to Munich. (79%, 19 Votes)
I’ve been living in Giesing since I have come to Munich.(21%, 5 Votes)
Well done! But I know how very hard this is. Explanation here.

Now, I’m ready to leave to go on a trip. What do I say?
I go to Poznań this weekend.
I am going to Poznań this weekend.
I will go to Poznań this weekend.

Grammar guru: since I have come/ since I came?

Last week things were very clear:

  • at the age of 42 (92%, 23 Votes)
  • in the age of 42 (8%, 2 Votes)

However, Neal Chambers said that the Japanese have trouble with this, too, as there is only one particle in Japanese. (Comment)

This week, the Grammar guru asks which one of these is correct:

  • I’ve been living in Giesing since I have come to Munich.
  • I’ve been living in Giesing since I came to Munich.

Grammar guru: at/in the age of 42

Last week’s question caused me some worry. Up to the last day visitors to this website were split down the middle:

  • Why did you change jobs? (52%, 11 Votes) = correct
  • Why did you change the job? (48%, 10 Votes) = incorrect

I asked my British colleagues, and they agree with me. More comments.

This week, the question is, what is better, at/in the age of 42?

Grammar guru: change jobs/ change the job?

Thanks to Markus’ very kind recommendation on Der Englisch Blog, last week’s Grammar guru question went off like a rocket: What’s the best alternative to “You don’t really need to register for the event”?

  • “You don’t necessarily have to register for the event.” (86%, 36 Votes)
  • “You mustn’t register for the event.” (14%, 6 Votes)

Thanks to everyone who voted or joined the discussion. Mustn’t forbids doing something, don’t have to + needn’t allow you NOT to do something.

This week the question is, which one is better:

  • Why did you change jobs?
  • Why did you change the job?

Grammar guru: must, have to, need to?

Last week’s question was What sounds better to you?

  • This has to be done by Friday (88%, 7 Votes)
  • This has to be done until Friday (12%, 1 Votes)

If it is done until Friday, somebody is doing it day and night until Friday rolls around.
By Friday
just means it’ll be ready on Friday.

This week we ask: What’s the best alternative to saying “You don’t really need to register for the event”?

  • You mustn’t register for the event.
  • You don’t necessarily have to register for the event.