Hi, there. Nesse episódio do podcast Inglês Online eu falo sobre uma estrutura comum do inglês, que pode soar meio estranha para os brasileiros no início. Para ver e ouvir podcasts de semanas anteriores, clique em Podcast Inglesonline na barra lateral. Você pode também assinar o feed do podcast ou encontrá-lo no iTunes (veja o menuzinho ali ao lado).
Hello, everybody. What’s up? Today we have a new episode of the inglesonline podcast. To download or just listen to other episodes and download transcripts, go to inglesonline.com.br and click Podcast Inglesonline.
Today I’ll focus on a particular structure that can sound really weird to our Brazilian ears before we’ve had the chance to hear or read it a lot and get used to it. It involves the verb HAVE, which thankfully is a word most English students are familiar with. So this podcast will present you with a few examples, and hopefully it’ll help clarify how this structure works, and it will enable you to recognize and understand it later on when you’re watching movies or TV shows.
Picture this: Ms. Jones is an admin (which is short for administrative assistant). Look at the picture – that’s her. She’s talking on the phone; actually she’s trying to find someone while the caller waits on the line. This is pretty much what Ms. Jones does all day long. She answers the phone and takes messages for her boss, Mr. Marvin, who’s the president of… some company.
Sometimes, if the call is urgent or very important, she puts the caller through to her boss. Usually she just takes messages, though, since Mr. Marvin is a very, very busy man. So now listen to some of the things Ms. Jones has said today:
- Around 9AM Mr. Marvin’s wife called. Ms. Jones said “Don’t worry, Mrs. Marvin, I will have your husband call you before lunch”.
- Around 10AM Federal Express delivered a package for Tony, the marketing manager. Ms. Jones called Tony and said “Sure, Tony, next time I will have the FedEx guy deliver the package to you directly”
- Around 10:30AM Ms. Jones called the office supplies store and she placed an order for twenty pens and fifteen pencils. She told the store clerk “Please have the delivery person call me once they get here”.
Hear those sentences again: Ms. Jones said “Don’t worry, Mrs. Marvin, I’ll have your husband call you before lunch”. Then, she said “Sure, Tony, next time I’ll have the FedEx guy deliver the package to you directly”. And finally she said to the store clerk “Please have the delivery person call me once they get here”. Notice that the structure for all of them is the same: she will have someone do something. Or, in the case of the office supplies store, she asked the store clerk to have someone do something.
Now, what does that mean? To have someone do something is to ask them to do that thing, and maybe make sure they remember to do it, or to take the necessary steps for that person to do that thing. In other words, to have someone do something is to arrange, to take the necessary steps for that person to do that thing. In the first example, where Ms. Jones said “I will have your husband call you before lunch, Mrs. Marvin”… What did Ms. Jones do? She probably told Mr Jones that he was supposed to call his wife before lunch. And then, one hour before lunch she probably reminded him to call his wife. Then, ten minutes before noon she noticed that he hadn’t called his wife yet, so she knocked on his door, opened it and asked him “Mr. Marvin, would you like me to call your wife and put her through to you? She needs to talk to you before lunch”. Mr. Marvin said “Not necessary, thanks”, and he called his wife immediately. So what did Ms. Jones do? She had her boss call his wife before lunch. How? She told him about it, then she reminded him twice so that he wouldn’t forget.
Notice that “have someone do something” is different from “make someone do something”. “Make someone do something” means “force that person to do something”. So, the following week the FedEx guy brought Tony another package. And what did Ms. Jones do? She had the FedEx guy deliver the package directly to Tony. How? She simply showed the FedEx guy to Tony’s office, and there he went to hand the package to Tony.
What else? Oh, the people from the office supplies store came by to deliver some supplies. They called Ms. Jones when they arrived. Why did they do that? Because their supervisor had them call Ms. Jones when they arrived. He told them, before they left the store: “When you get there, please call Ms. Jones. Here’s her phone number”. Their supervisor had his employees call Ms. Jones.
Here’s a summary of this structure in three different verb tenses.
- I had (someone) (do something), for things in the past;
- I will have (someone) (do something), for things in the future;
- I always have (someone) (do something), for habitual tasks.
Notice that ‘do’ is always ‘do’ in all three examples. And ‘do’ is a generic example, of course… it could be almost any verb. So from now on try to notice this whenever you’re watching a movie or a TV show. It won’t be long before you hear it! Talk to you next time.
- I had (someone) (do something)
- I will have (someone) (do something)
- I always have (someone) (do something)
put someone through to (a person) = passar a ligação de alguém para (uma pessoa)
Federal Express = serviço de entregas expressas
the FedEx guy = o cara do Federal Express que veio entregar a encomenda
She showed the guy to Tony’s office = ela levou o cara, ou mostrou o caminho a ele, até o escritório do Tony