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I realized how exhausted I was, and how little I was looking forward to what LAY ahead. Is this correct? What should this be? Thanks!
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Hi,

It's fine.

Clive
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I realized how exhausted I was, and how little I was looking forward to what LAY ahead.

It's perfect. Compare:

I realize how exhausted I am, and how little I am looking forward to what lies ahead.

Present tenses: I realize, I am, I am looking forward, what lies.
Past: I realized, I was, I was looking forward, what lay.

lie, lay, lain

CJ
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AnonymousI realized how exhausted I was, and how little I was looking forward to what LAY ahead. Is this correct? What should this be? Thanks!

Hope this article helps .....Emotion: big smile

LANGUAGE CORNER
Lie, Lay, and All That

Lie This to Rest?

BY EVAN JENKINS

No, of course not. But the confusion between "lie" and "lay" was different and subtler in the following passage, which said someone who maneuvered for a job too overtly "did not do what a shrewd operator would do and lay low, but openly threw himself into the matter."

Someone was thinking of the expression "to lie low," meaning to hunker down, make oneself inconspicuous. Introduced by "did not," as it was in the example, the verb required the present tense: the job candidate "did not ... lie low." "Lay" is the past tense of "lie" — she lay low for awhile. The past perfect tense is "lain" — until that day, she had lain low.

Lie, lay, lain.

"To lie" means to rest, be at rest, repose, or just exist on or in some place ("the fault lies with the captain, not the crew") or in some condition or position (lie low, lie down). Probably because its past tense is "lay," the word is often confused with ...

... "To lay," meaning to put or place something somewhere (including to bring forth an egg). It takes an object — lay that pistol down, babe — and no form of "to lie" does. (Well, "lie your heart out," but that's another "lie.") .) The past tense of "lay" is "laid," and so is its past perfect tense.

Lay, laid, laid.

Despite some nay-sayers, the failure to distinguish between "lie" and "lay" is widely considered illiterate. And yet the failure is surprisingly common. Is the only answer rote memorization? Seems so, but anyone with a mnemonic trick that has helped avoid the confusion is welcome to send it along.

 CalifJim's reply was promoted to an answer.
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