If A is B, C is D
I saw this sentence in a song,
"If life is a road, and then she is my ride.", but I have learned that"If life were a road, and then she would be my ride." is grammatically more correct or the structure of the first sentence is okay to use in daily conversations?
Thank you so much as usual and have a good day.
Both sentences are conditional sentences, but of different types.
"If life is a road, and then she is my ride" is the present action variation of the Type I conditional. The if clause uses a simple present verb, and the result clause also uses the simple present. Type I conditionals are used to express that the if clause is possible and also very likely that the condition will be fulfilled. As a matter of pure grammar, this sentence is correct.
"If life were a road, and then she would be my ride." First, we need to make a correction. Life, here, is a singular noun, so --> "If life was a road, and then she would be my ride." This is called a Type II conditional sentence. The if clause uses a simple past tense verb, and the result clause uses would + infinitive verb. Type II conditionals are used to express that it is possible but very unlikely that the condition will be fulfilled. Again, strictly from pure grammar, this sentence is correct.
From a purely logical standpoint, the first sentence cannot be correct. A person cannot be an actual ride. So it is not physically possible for the result clause to be fulfilled. But!
The author is not writing of physical reality. The author is using metaphor to describe his relationship. In this case, the result clause is likely to be fulfilled and the first sentence is correct.
You must understand, the first and second sentences do not have the same meaning. The second sentence carries the opposite meaning of the first. #1 = result clause is likely. #2 = result clause is unlikely.
Conclusion: "If life is a road, and then she is my ride." is correct. The second sentence cannot replace the first.
|link||answered Sep 29 '12 at 14:19 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow|
Here's another way to look at it, Kwang. If you have a good understanding of math or programming, then you have seen a lot of "if/then" statements.
If X = 100, then Y = 110
Equals is a present tense verb, just like is. When X equals (is) 100, this is the present action as Jeff described. Right now. If X is 100, then Y is 110.
Suppose that you started to wonder, "What if X were 200?" That's another possibility. The answer is, "Then Y would be 210."
The difference is that in one sentence you are talking about what is right now, and in the other, you are talking about what could possibly be. Both are correct, depending on what you want to say.
|link||answered Sep 29 '12 at 18:27 Patty T Grammarly Fellow|
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