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I'd like to start notes to you as if we're already in the middle of a conversation.

I always thought that after as if, you can only use passed tense, why here does it use we're?

thanks

Ench
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EnchantedI always thought that after as if, you can only use passed past tense, why here does it use we're?
No. That's not true. You don't have to use past tense after as if.

He looks as if he's hungry.

CJ
In addition to what Jim has said, this might also be interesting for you, Enchanted:

as if and as though

This part in particular: "... the verbs in the clauses they introduce may now be either indicative ... or subjunctive ..."
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I don't know if there's a rule about it. I think of it in this sense as being similar to "make believe." Various tenses are possible. "Let's make believe we never met." Let's make believe we're going to win the Lotto. Let's pretend we're on a desert island.

Why do you treat me as if we're already married?
I feel as if I'm going to throw up!
Act as if you found the money in a trash can.
CJ:
Thanks, I know my this question may sound silly:
so, what is the main difference between using a past tense and present tense?
Ench
Enchantedwhat is the main difference between using a past tense and present tense?
Act as if you found it in the trash is a good example. You act now as if you found it in the trash before now.
Act as if you know what you are doing is another, showing the contrast. You act now as if you know now what you are doing now.

It's mostly the normal difference between the present and the past. The present is happening now. The past already happened earlier.
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Sometimes the past also gives the sense that we are speaking of something hypothetical. Thus, the following sentence has two interpretations.

Act as if you knew what you were doing.


1) Act now as if you know now what you are doing now -- even though that is not very likely!
2) Act now as if you knew (in the past) what you were doing (in the past).

Sometimes it's easy to understand which interpretation is required just from the context. Sometimes it's less clear, but then it may not necessarily be very important to clarify because either meaning might make sense.

CJ
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And I think you are right in thinking that you must always use past tense after as if.

"...as if we're in the middle..". is not a the present tense (we are) as you might think, but past: (we were).

Same as in:

"...as if she's in the middle..." is not a the present tense (she is) as you might think, but past: (she was).

That the common usage says in contrary..., Well, that's another story.

TIM
Verb_aTIM"...as if she's in the middle..." is not a the present tense (she is) as you might think, but past: (she was).
Seriously?
In what universe?
Hi Tim

I have to agree with GG. That doesn't sound like any version of English I've ever heard.

She's can mean either she is or she has (depending on the context). However, she's does not mean she was -- not in written and also not in spoken English.

The contraction we're can only mean we are. It is not used to mean we were.

In spoken English, the words was and were might not always be carefully uttered, however the initial W-sound is still there -- not omitted.

If you are at all familiar with the Corpus of Contemporary American English, you will be able to find countless examples of "as if" followed by something other than the past tense (or the subjunctive). The very first example I found was this one:

"So it is not as if we are going to take power..." (That's actually a future form)

Here is another example from there:

"It's not as if we don't have, for example, a major economic problem with the budget." (Simple present tense)
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