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Hello, everyone!
 
I have one question about "I ate food like there was no more tomorrow."
 
Though I know "There is/was no more tomorrow" is the idiomatic expression for the case someone does something very fast, in large amounts and without thinking carefully, I would hope to hear from you following alternatives are
also acceptable or not:
 
1) I ate food as if (like) there would be no (more) 'tomorrow'.
2) I ate food as if (like) there would not come 'tomorrow'.
3) I ate food as if (like) there would not be 'tomorrow'.
4) I ate food as if (like) 'tomorrow' would not come.
 
I assume above 4 alternatives might be acceptable, because "would" as a past tense of "will" could be used in the "as if + indicative mood" clause.
 
Will appreciate, if you kindly explain which one is unacceptable with the reason (unidiomatic or ungrammatical).
 
Always thanking for your clarification,
 
Best RGDS,
Last edited by Gustavo, Contributor
Original Post

Hi, deepcosmos,

@deepcosmos posted:
1) I ate food as if (like) there would be no (more) 'tomorrow'.
2) I ate food as if (like) there would not come 'tomorrow'.
3) I ate food as if (like) there would not be 'tomorrow'.
4) I ate food as if (like) 'tomorrow' would not come.
I only find (2) to be wrong because, although anticipatory "there" can be used with the verb "come," you would need a different kind of subject, for example: There will come a time when the coronavirus is defeated.
 
Note you don't need to enclose "tomorrow" between quotes because the word is not being used paratextually in your sentences above.
Last edited by Gustavo, Contributor

Hi, deepcosmos,

I only find (2) to be wrong because, although anticipatory "there" can be used with the verb "come," you would need a different kind of subject, for example: There will come a time when the coronavirus is defeated.
 
Note you don't need to enclose "tomorrow" between quotes because the word is not being used paratextually in your sentences above.

Thank you very much, Gustavo.

What do you think about (1), (3) , (4) with 'would' in indicative mood, with which you feel natural and grammatical?

Best RGDS,

(3) is the best. "more" does not sound natural in (1) and (4) is too different from the original idiom.

As for the use of the future or conditional, I think it is grammatically correct. There are several examples at Google Books. On COCA, I only found one example of like there will be no tomorrow and none of the other combinations with "as if" and conditional.

(3) is the best. "more" does not sound natural in (1) and (4) is too different from the original idiom.

As for the use of the future or conditional, I think it is grammatically correct. There are several examples at Google Books. On COCA, I only found one example of like there will be no tomorrow and none of the other combinations with "as if" and conditional.

Always thanking very much for your usual, big assistances,

Best RGDS

Hi, Deepcosmos—I agree with Gustavo's answers above and would just like to add two small points. First, "food" is redundant after "ate"; the sentence would be better if it began "I ate like/as if . . ." instead of "I ate food like/as if . . ." A direct object should be more informative (e.g., "I ate Twinkies like/as if. . .").

Second, in addition to the viable options you have considered with Gustavo's help, I'd like to suggest another: "as if there were no tomorrow." ("I ate as if there were no tomorrow.") That is a common way of putting the idea. Consider Michael Douglas's use of "And what if there were no tomorrow?" here.

Last edited by David, Moderator

Hi, Deepcosmos—I agree with Gustavo's answers above and would just like to add two small points. First, "food" is redundant after "ate"; the sentence would be better if it began "I ate like/as if . . ." instead of "I ate food like/as if . . ." A direct object should be more informative (e.g., "I ate Twinkies like/as if. . .").

Second, in addition to the viable options you have considered with Gustavo's help, I'd like to suggest another: "as if there were no tomorrow." ("I ate as if there were no tomorrow.") That is a common way of putting the idea. Consider Michael Douglas's use of "And what if there were no tomorrow?" here.

Fully noted, David.

This is really one of the great places where I find the pleasure with sincere thanks!!

 

Best RGDS,

Second, in addition to the viable options you have considered with Gustavo's help, I'd like to suggest another: "as if there were no tomorrow." ("I ate as if there were no tomorrow.") That is a common way of putting the idea. Consider Michael Douglas's use of "And what if there were no tomorrow?" here.

David, it occurred to me later why the clause - "as if there were no tomorrow" - is possible, because the were is an indicator, which shows that this clause is a subjunctive mood?

As far as I understand, the original 'as if' clause is an exaggerated expression in a indicative mood. I quote the concerned clauses from Practical English Usage (3rd edition);

74. as if and as though; like
1. meaning
As if and as though are both used to say what a situation seems like. They can
refer to something that we think may be true.
. . .
page 68
They can also be used to talk about things which we know are not true.
* I feel as if l though I'm dying.
* She was acting as if l though she was in charge.

If in a subjunctive mood, would the 'as if' clause be read, "as if there had been no tomorrow.", since the tense of main clause is a past - ate?

 

Would hope to hear your bright opinion again,

 

Thanking in advance and Best RGDS,

@deepcosmos posted:

David, it occurred to me later why the clause - "as if there were no tomorrow" - is possible, because the were is an indicator, which shows that this clause is a subjunctive mood?

Hello again, Deepcosmos—Yes, "were" is subjunctive in such clauses. "As if"- clauses are analyzed as reductions of expanded conditional constructions:

I ate as if there were no tomorrow.
= I ate as I would (eat) if there were no tomorrow.

If there were no tomorrow, the speaker would eat in a certain way, namely, the way that he ate then. He ate as he would (eat) if there were no tomorrow.

Hello again, Deepcosmos—Yes, "were" is subjunctive in such clauses. "As if"- clauses are analyzed as reductions of expanded conditional constructions:

I ate as if there were no tomorrow.
= I ate as I would (eat) if there were no tomorrow.

If there were no tomorrow, the speaker would eat in a certain way, namely, the way that he ate then. He ate as he would (eat) if there were no tomorrow.

David, thank you million times with note,

 

Best RGDS

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