Monday, 27 June 2011

What About If We Went To The Cinema?

SCENARIO
Imagine you are talking about leisure activities with a relative, a friend or a colleague.  Perhaps you are talking about things to do this evening. You might have said something which gave the impression that perhaps you are  keen on going to the cinema. The other person wants to know how you would feel about going to the cinema this evening.

He/ she could ask you:
¿Y si fuesemos al cine esta noche?
 


OUR TIP
Questions like this one invite answers which should always include a 'conditional' tense. There is an element of 'uncertainty' in the question, which should be reflected in the answer. Basically, your answer depends on whether you want to say that for you:
  • Going might be OK
  • Going would be OK, but only if certain condition(s) are met

Here are a couple of examples which deal with those two basic possibilities:
  • Claro que podríamos ir (of course we could go)
  • Si no hubiese otra cosa que hacer, podríamos ir  (if there ware nothing elese to do, we could go)*

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Y si fuesemos al cine esta noche?

*Please see grammar below


Grammar-Subjunctive
Please note above a typical example of imperfect subjunctive and conditional:
  • "if <something happened>, then...".

NB The tell-tale sign in these expressions is the English use of the past tense ("if something happened").

Some examples of imperfect subjunctive and conditional are:
  • Si lloviese ¿irías al cine? (if it rained, would you go to the cinema?)
  • Si hiciese sol, iríamos a la playa (if it was sunny, we would go to the beach)
  • Si yo no estuviese cansado, iría a bailar (if I wasn't tired, I would go dancing)
  • Si tus amigos quisieran, podrían quedarse con nosotros (if your friends wanted, they could stay with us)

Now you should practise imperfect subjunctive and conditional expressions of your own.



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