Peculiar English

“To be or not to be?” – William Shakespeare

What do you think Shakespeare was exactly thinking about when he was saying these words? Did he only want to (or not) exist? Or is “being” something more than only “existing”? Can it be an action?

Look, recently I had this conversation with my girlfriend:

S: Honey, you are wonderful!

MG: Oh, Stanley! You are so cute.

S: But Honey, do you have any idea how beautiful you are?

MG: Huh…

S: You are the best in the world! One in a million!

MG: Now I understand… Stop playing your games! What’s happening!? You are being too nice… Why are you being so nice to   me? What do you want!?

S: I’m hungry…

Yeah she got me…

Look, when I say: “You are wonderful!” or “You are beautiful.”, I refer to the character of her. It is true that it is rather an opinion than a fact, yet it seems she is fairly unlikely to change from wonderful or beautiful to nasty or ugly – oh, at least I hope so.

On the other hand… When she tells me: “You are being too nice.”, she clearly refers to my behaviour at this moment of history. By no means does she refer to my character, which I will need to reflect upon.

sb is + adjective                             to describe character

sb is being + adjective                    to describe behaviour

Have a look at some exercises in the link:

to be or not to be


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