View Full Version : I wish I were going, too...or was?
07-31-2000, 10:15 PM
Marge: The national grammar rodeo? I wish I were going. Oh, wait, wait; I wish I _was_ going. Is that right, Bart?
Bart: I dunno.
So, which is it?
07-31-2000, 10:22 PM
I think were is correct in this case.
07-31-2000, 10:54 PM
You have entered the dark underworld of the subjunctive mood. My understanding is that, in English, the subjunctive is reserved for contrary-to-fact statements of desire—in this case, a wish. Marge is wishing for something that will not happen, so she should use the past subjunctive: "I wish I were going."
There are three other moods in English: the indicative, imperative, and conditional. But I don't understand the nuances of each well enough to explain them.
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