Neither... nor...

lilyyang tw Taiwan

I often use a computer to watch movies. And so does Tracy.

= Both Tracy and I often use a computer to watch movies.

I never use a computer to play games. And neither does Tracy.

= Neither Tracy nor I use a computer to play games.

I hardly ever use a computer to read the news. And neither does Tracy.

-----> Neither Tracy nor I. .....

Question: I don't know how to put "neither.... nor" into this sentence.

Thank you!!!

March 08 at 11:58
  • louise_steele ca Canada

    I am not sure I could use the neither-nor structure. I would say, "Tracy and I hardly ever use the computer to read the news."

    March 09 at 01:45
  • brucenator us United States

    I agree with Louise. The use of the words 'hardly ever' makes it more difficult to put that into a natural sounding neither-nor statement. I would also say, "Tracy and I hardly ever use the computer to read the news." I suppose you could say, "Neither Tracy nor I normally use the computer to read the news, except on rare occasions." Good question, though!

    Note that it should be "use the computer" rather than "use a computer" in each of your examples.

    March 09 at 03:08
    • lilyyang tw Taiwan

      Thank you so much, brucenator.

      About "use a computer", I made the sentences to practice because I saw them on a textbook.

      I'll write down the exercise on the textbook here.

      The exercise is like this:

      How do you use a computer?

      Rate your computer usage

      I use a computer..... often sometimes hardly ever never

      to send emails ___ ___ ___ ___

      for watching movies ___ ___ ___ ___

      That's why I used it to make a sentence.

      I'm so happy that you pointed out the mistake I made, I didn't notice the difference.

      According to your correction, my sentence should be "use the computer" because I am talking about my habit? or what? So I can't use it or copy it just from the textbook. (Sorry, I think it's kind of hard for me to explain it.)

      March 09 at 13:04
    • brucenator us United States

      lilyyang,

      Sometimes it's hard to explain usage, other than to say it 'sounds' better. Especially when talking about such nuances as when to use the definite article versus the indefinite article in English (whereas some languages have more complex article usage and some languages don't use articles at all.) Or like PV2U pointed out on your other post, why we say one thing (an app) is 'on' our phone and another thing (a phone number) is 'in' our phone. Or as jameskirby pointed out, why Americans tend to call them cellphones, while the British still call them mobile phones.

      I'll think about it for a while, but I'm not sure I can sufficiently answer your question.

      I would ask, "How do you use the computer?" and I would say, "I use the computer often," "I use the computer to send e-mail" and "I watch movies on the computer." (I use the computer quite a lot, it seems.)

      Maybe someone else can explain why we tend to use "the" rather than "a" in this situation.

      March 09 at 20:13
      • lilyyang tw Taiwan

        Totally understand what you said. I feel the same way. It gets more complicated when a foreigner asks me about the article in Chinese. We use different articles for different things, which means "a" for banana, table, car etc. are all different in Chinese. It drives them crazy, sometimes.

        Thanks again for the help, brucenator. I really appreciate.

        March 10 at 03:20
  • brucenator us United States

    By the way, lilyyang, I was on YouTube just now and this video of George Carlin happened to come up in my 'recommended' list and I thought, this would be perfect for lilyyang. George Carlin was one of the greatest American comedians who ever lived. Hope you enjoy it!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHhYLJMi7CE

    George Carlin "Everyday Expressions"

    March 09 at 03:34
    • lilyyang tw Taiwan

      Thank you very much, brucenator. I was trying to keep it up. It was so fast. And I still have tons of expressions to learn. I like it, though. Thank you again for helping me with extra stuff.

      March 10 at 10:10
    • brucenator us United States

      Now that I'm watching it again, I realize that he does talk kinda fast and runs his words together in places, as well as using very informal grammar. If you'd like, I could transcribe some of it for you, but where would you like me to post it?

      March 11 at 01:41
      • lilyyang tw Taiwan

        That's so nice of you, brucenator. I don't know where would be convenient for you to post it.

        Is it not okay to post it here? or what other places are better?

        Here is my email:***** Just in case.

        I really can't thank you enough.

        March 11 at 04:53
      • brucenator us United States

        I was thinking of maybe posting on your wall, but your wall looks empty, so I wasn't sure what was up with that. No one has ever posted on your wall before???

        March 11 at 06:22
        • lilyyang tw Taiwan

          Haha, I didn't know I had my wall until you mentioned it. No, no one has posted on my wall before, not that I can recall. Should I put something on my wall first, then it won't look empty? Or am I allowed to put something on my wall?

          March 11 at 09:20
        • brucenator us United States

          OK, now that you know you have a wall, I'll post on your wall…

          March 11 at 18:02
          • lilyyang tw Taiwan

            Thank you so much for decorating my wall colorful, brucenator. I'll take time to process it one by one. And I am so grateful for the generous help that it took your time to transcribe it for me.

            Thank you, thank you, and thank you......

            March 12 at 01:03