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Thomas, spend less time on computer games, or you will do worse in your studies. Options
Maggie Q
Posted: Monday, August 7, 2017 7:22:36 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/15/2017
Posts: 180
Neurons: 4,502
Thomas, spend less time on computer games, or you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, if you spend more time on computer games, you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, you had better spend less time on computer games, or you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, I warn you not to spend more time on computer games. Otherwise, you will do worse in your studies.

Question 1: Are these sentences all natural to native speakers?

Question 2: Are these sentences all correct?
FounDit
Posted: Thursday, October 4, 2018 3:42:04 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/19/2011
Posts: 9,831
Neurons: 51,747
Maggie Q wrote:
Thomas, spend less time on computer games, or you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, if you spend more time on computer games, you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, you had better spend less time on computer games, or you will do worse in your studies. = Thomas, I warn you not to spend more time on computer games. Otherwise, you will do worse in your studies.

Question 1: Are these sentences all natural to native speakers?
Yes, they all sound natural, but they are all very formal in tone.
In everyday language, one might hear, "Thomas, if you don't stop playing video games all the time, your grades are going to suffer".

Question 2: Are these sentences all correct?

I see no problems with them. They all appear to be correct.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, October 5, 2018 4:06:16 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 30,636
Neurons: 181,638
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hello Maggie Q.

The only point (besides the formality) is the use of "worse".

It may be only my idea - but if you say "you will do worse in your studies", it means "you are already doing badly in your studies, and it will become worse".

So - if you don't play computer games, you will do badly.
If you do play computer games, you will do worse.
There is no way to do well.

*********
FounDit's suggestion (grades will suffer) sounds better - it does not suggest how good the grades will be.

Or (to keep your more formal suggested sentences):
Thomas, you had better spend less time on computer games, or you will do badly in your studies.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
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