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Scenario: I got a speeding ticket and I'm thinking about disputing it or maybe not.

Which one should I use? Why?

1. If you're considering going to court, he wouldn't look good if he started adding stuff in court, plus it wouldn't stick and if he wasn't careful he could give you room to get out of your ticket. (Is this a mixed conditional?)

2. If you're considering going to court, he won't look good if he starts adding stuff in court, plus it won't stick and if he isn't careful he can give you room to get out of your ticket.

And with these ones below, I have no idea about what the person is thinking about. Is it best to use an imaginal conditional or real conditional?

3. If you're going to bring it to court, you might get fined even more.

4. If you were to bring it to court, you might get fined even more.

Thanks.
Comments  
Hi Jack,

1. If you're considering going to court, he wouldn't look good if he started adding stuff in court, plus it wouldn't stick and if he weren't careful he could give you room to get out of your ticket. (Is this a mixed conditional?) I'm not familiar with the term 'mixed conditional', but there are certainly multiple conditions involved here.

2. If you're considering going to court, he won't look good if he starts adding stuff in court, plus it won't stick and if he isn't careful he can give you room to get out of your ticket.

Use #2 if you think he really might start adding stuff in court etc. and use #1 if you think it's not likely or possible.

And with these ones below, I have no idea about what the person is thinking about. Is it best to use an imaginal conditional or real conditional?

Either is OK, but I think most people would just say 'If you bring it to court ...' or maybe 'If you brought it to court'.

3. If you're going to bring it to court, you might get fined even more.

4. If you were to bring it to court, you might get fined even more.

Best wishes, Clive
Just to supplement Clive's reply:

1. If you're considering going to court, he wouldn't look good if he started adding stuff in court, plus it wouldn't stick and if he wasn't careful he could give you room to get out of your ticket. (Is this a mixed conditional?)

Think of this as a set of nested conditionals:

If you're considering going to court:

a) if he started adding stuff in court, he wouldn't look good (type 2) +

b) if he started adding stuff, it wouldn't stick (type 2) +

c) if he weren't careful, he could give you room (type 2)

'If you're considering going to court' is short for 'if you're considering going to court, it means that: a) b) c)'.

So the sentence as a whole isn't strictly speaking a mixed conditional.

MrP
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And what about :
"I wonder if I take you home
Would you still be in love, baby" (Black Eyed Peas - Don't phunk with my heart)
It must be a mixed conditional, but I dont understand the sence.
Hello Anon

Yes, a mixed conditional: the speaker begins with a type 1, and switches to a type 2 in the main clause:

1. If I take you home, would you still be in love?

The effect is of confidence suddenly evaporating.

The type 1 version would be:

2. If I take you home, will you still be in love?

The type 2 version would be:

3. If I took you home, would you still be in love?

MrP
The effect is of confidence suddenly evaporating.

So does that mean: I will take you home but I dont know will you still be in love.
???
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Hello Anon

'If I take you home' is confident. It suggests high expectations of what might happen, if he takes her home. But seeming confident is sometimes counterproductive in these situations. So the speaker switches to the much more tentative 'Would you still be in love with me?'

A weaselly but no doubt effective tactic.

MrP
Oh thanks it's really helpful.
P.S Hope not to be Anon soon, but it seems quite difficult to register on this forum.