Air travel

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Have you travelled by air? What is the longest flight you have taken?


Present Perfect

The present perfect is formed from the present tense of the verb have and the past participle of a verb:

The present perfect continuous is formed with have/has been and the -ing form of the verb:


We use the present perfect tense:

  • for something that started in the past and continues in the present:

They’ve been married for nearly fifty years.
She has lived in Liverpool all her life.

Note: We normally use the present perfect continuous for this:

She has been living in Liverpool all her life.
It’s been raining for hours.

  •  for something we have done several times in the past and continue to do:

I’ve played the guitar ever since I was a teenager.
He has written three books and he is working on another one.
I’ve been watching that programme every week.

We often use a clause with since to show when something started in the past:

They’ve been staying with us since last week.
have worked here since I left school.
I’ve been watching that programme every week since it started.

  • when we are talking about our experience up to the present:

Note: We often use the adverb ever to talk about experience up to the present:

My last birthday was the worst day I have ever had.

Note: and we use never for the negative form:

Have you ever met George?
Yes, but I’ve never met his wife.

  • for something that happened in the past but is important at the time of speaking:

I can’t get in the house. I’ve lost my keys.
Teresa isn’t at home. I think she has gone shopping.
I’m tired out. I’ve been working all day.

 We use the present perfect of be when someone has gone to a place and returned:

A: Where have you been?
B: I’ve just been out to the supermarket.

A: Have you ever been to San Francisco?
B: No, but I’ve been to Los Angeles.

But when someone has not returned we use have/has gone:

A: Where is Maria? I haven’t seen her for weeks.
B: She’s gone to Paris for a week. She’ll be back tomorrow.

We often use the present perfect with time adverbials which refer to the recent past:

just; only just; recently;

Scientists have recently discovered a new breed of monkey.
We have just got back from our holidays.

or adverbials which include the present:

ever (in questions); so faruntil nowup to nowyet (in questions and negatives)

Have you ever seen a ghost?
Where have you been up to now?
Have you finished your homework yet?
No, so far I’ve only done my history.


We do not use the present perfect with an adverbial which refers to past time which is finished:

I have seen that film yesterday.
We have just bought a new car last week.
When we were children we have been to California.

But we can use it to refer to a time which is not yet finished:

Have you seen Helen today?
We have bought a new car this week.

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How to Do a New Jersey Accent

Learn how to do a New Jersey accent like the one Snooki has from voice and speech coach Andrea Caban in this Howcast video.

New Jersey is a big place. New Jersey is close to New York. It’s close to Philadelphia. So you get a broad range of different kinds of accents in New Jersey. We’re going to go for more of a north Jersey accent. So kind of on the more New Yorkish tip. So let’s work on this oral posture. So the lip corners move back and forth a lot. The tongue is high. And sometimes it’s so high that you get some of that nasal quality to the sound, like that. So you want to slide through that sound. You get a ha, ha sound. The ah sound becomes ouah. So maul, thought becomes maul, thought. Coffee and often become coffee, and often. And notice that I used that t in the word often. And that sometimes pops up in a Jersey accent. Often.
My home state, Florida. I’m from Florida, and it has two syllables where I come from. Florida. Some people say Florida. But if you’re from New Jersey, it’s Florida. The ih sound sometimes turns into an ah sound. So animal, hairy, married turns into animal, hairy, married. And again, you hear that nasal quality to the musicality. The ah sound also becomes a diphthong. So ah, as in glass. Dirty. You hear those two sounds. Glass. Fast. So unlike the New York accent, there are r sounds at the ends of a lot of words. Like there, care, player. Or in a New York sound, you might hear there, care, player.

There’s not a lot of pitch variety in this accent, and although it’s got a lot of similarities to the New York accent, it’s not such an urban sound. So it’s a little bit softer in its musicality. But don’t take my word for it. Listen to some north Jersey accents, and see if I came close. And discover the accent for yourself. Crawl in through the oral posture and see what you can learn.