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Thread: Can I Have? / Can I Get?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    1

    Default Can I Have? / Can I Get?

    Hi,

    I'm new to this forum and I've joined to try and improve my writing skills. I'd like to kick off by commenting on the very widespread mix up of the verbs have and get and would like to know how it came about.

    To my mind you use "get" if you are asking permission to fetch something or if you are asking someone if they'd like you to obtain something for them. So "can I get some paper for the photocopier please?" if you were asking your boss for permission for a visit to the stationery room, or "can I get you anything from the supermarket?" if you were heading into town.

    However, you use "have" if you are asking a person to serve you something, hence "can I have a beer please?" to the barman in a pub, or "can I have a latte please?" at Starbucks.

    When I'm out and about though, I constantly hear "can I get?" in the second situation, so "can I get a coffee?", or "can I get a beer, please?" I end up thinking: are they going to jump over the bar and serve themselves?

    This seems to be a very common mix up these days, particularly with the under 30's, so can anyone tell me what's going on here??

    Many thanks,

    Tim

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    1

    Default

    Actually, it will defend in the sentence. anyway, it's all correct. it's not a wrong sentence fragment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    Hi,

    I'm new to this forum and I've joined to try and improve my writing skills. I'd like to kick off by commenting on the very widespread mix up of the verbs have and get and would like to know how it came about.

    To my mind you use "get" if you are asking permission to fetch something or if you are asking someone if they'd like you to obtain something for them. So "can I get some paper for the photocopier please?" if you were asking your boss for permission for a visit to the stationery room, or "can I get you anything from the supermarket?" if you were heading into town.

    However, you use "have" if you are asking a person to serve you something, hence "can I have a beer please?" to the barman in a pub, or "can I have a latte please?" at Starbucks.

    When I'm out and about though, I constantly hear "can I get?" in the second situation, so "can I get a coffee?", or "can I get a beer, please?" I end up thinking: are they going to jump over the bar and serve themselves?

    This seems to be a very common mix up these days, particularly with the under 30's, so can anyone tell me what's going on here??

    Many thanks,

    Tim

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    usa
    Posts
    9

    Default

    this great information.

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