Quick Primer on Time

There are words that indicate time, such as since and while.

Then there are words that indicate causality and contrasts such as because and although.

Since = time

Since the beginning of time, all parents have loved their children.

Because = causality

Because parents love their children, they try not to kill them no matter what the provocation.

While = time

She covered her ears while singing Janis Joplin at the top of her lungs in order not to kill her darling children.

Although = contrast

Although she could not hear her children singing 99 bottles of beer on the wall with her hands over her ears, she could see their mouths moving and decided to go into the other room.

What trips you up?



13 responses to “Quick Primer on Time

  1. While listening to my 26 yr old son, I heard him say, “I wouldn’t have gone, besides for my boss making me.”

    You’ll understand that I’m too choked up to respond.

  2. Semantics, in their entirety.

    And, allow me to say, I love your examples! I’m going to give the Janis Joplin approach a try this afternoon.

  3. I was on baby-sitting duty last night, and was sitting on the floor in the bathroom watching three small, naked boys squirt water on each other, drink bubble bath water, and do other make-you-gag things that small boys do. The biggest of the paused from his antics for a moment, turned to me, and pensively asked: “what number can I wake up tomorrow?”

    I tried explained that he should say “what ‘time'” rather than “what ‘number'”; the numbers on his watch were not the same as other numbers. It was a difficult concept to explain, and one you’ve got to “get” before the rest makes sense. Since and while make take longer.

    But, he’s only six.

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