Study this example situation:
Alex is a bus driver, but now he is in bed asleep. He is not driving a bus. (He is asleep.)
but He drives a bus. He is a bus driver. drive(s), work(s), do(es) etc. is the present simple:
|he/she/it .||drives/works/does etc|
We use the present simple to talk about things in general. We use it to say that something happens all the time or repeatedly, or that something is true in general:
- Nurses look aft er patients in hospitals.
- I usually go away at weekends.
- The earth goes round the sun.
- The cafe opens at 7.30 in the morning.
|I work||but||he works||you go||but||It goes|
|they teach||but||my sister teaches||I have||but||he has|
We use do/does to make questions and negative sentences:
|do does||I/we/you/they he/she/it||work? drive? do?|
|I/we/you/they he/she/it||don’t doesn’t||work drive do|
- I come from Canada. Where do you come from?
- I don’t go away very often.
- What does this word mean? (not What means this word?)
- Rice doesn’t grow in cold climates.
In the following examples, do is also the main verb (do you do / doesn’t do etc.):
- ‘What do you do?’ ‘I work in a shop.’
- He’s always so lazy. He doesn’t do anything to help.
We use the present simple to say how often we do things:
- I get up at 8 o’clock every morning.
- How often do you go to the dentist?
- Julie doesn’t drink tea very often.
- Robert usually goes away two or three times a year.
I promise / I apologize etc.
Sometimes we do things by saying something. For example, when you promise to do something, you can say ‘I promise … ’; when you suggest something, you can say ‘I suggest … ’:
- I promise I won’t be late. (not I’m promising)
- ‘What do you suggest I do?’ ‘I suggest that you …
In the same way we say: I apologise … / I advise … / I insist … / I agree … / I refuse … etc.
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