he goes/he gets off work?

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  • esgalerin

    New Member
    English - California
    "Off duty" is used with things that are strictly regimented, like working at a hospital or as a security guard.

    It could also be used to joke that someone's job is very strictly run, as though their boss were an officer in the army keeping order among the ranks.
     

    skymouse

    Member
    English - London
    One has to be a little cautious, because in british English "to go off" mean to lose interest in, and "to get off" means to avoid by means of an excuse or exmeption. Adding the time means it'll probably be understood even if it's not very idiomatic, but it might sound a bit odd.

    How about "He went home from work at 5 pm".
     

    longxianchen

    Senior Member
    chinese
    You and Bluegiraffe are both from britain. Why are the answers different? Of course, I am sure "He went home from work at 5 pm" is right. But, I also feel his answer is also reliable. So what should I do? Thank you anyway
     

    bluegiraffe

    Senior Member
    English - England
    You and Bluegiraffe are both from britain. Why are the answers different? Of course, I am sure "He went home from work at 5 pm" is right. But, I also feel his answer is also reliable. So what should I do? Thank you anyway
    I disagree with Skymouse. "I get off work at 5:30" is perfectly idiomatic. I have no idea why we disagree. p.s. I'm a girl!
     

    skymouse

    Member
    English - London
    Hmm, now I don't know if "I get off work at 5:30" sounds right to me or not :) I convinced myself it sounded odd and now I'm not sure! Probably bluegiraffe is right.
     

    redgiant

    Senior Member
    Cantonese, Hong Kong
    I feel that "I got off work at 5:30" simply suggests I finished work today at 5:30. If I wanted to say I came back from work, I'd go with skymouse's suggestion. What do native speakers think?
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    "If somebody comes back from work, can we express it by saying" he gets or goes off work"?"
    The example is poor English. Usually, "comes back" = returns, so the example means, "If somebody returns [home] from work, [would] " he gets or goes off work" be one way to express this?"

    It would not. "To get off" describes the act of leaving a constraining situation, not arriving somewhere.

    "to get off" as a phrasal verb = (i) has a sense of "to be free from/of"; "He got off [was acquitted on] a charge of murder." "The fish got off [escaped from] the hook." "I got off [escaped] lightly with a warning." "I got off [departed] at 5:30."
     

    RM1(SS)

    Senior Member
    English - US (Midwest)
    You can say "get off work". I get off work at 5:30.
    How about "He went home from work at 5 pm".
    Not quite the same thing. To me, at least, bluegiraffe's sentence describes ending the workday, while skymouse's refers to departing the workplace. I get off work at five, but I can then sitting around talking for a while, or otherwise killing time, and not go home from work until five thirty.
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    If somebody comes back from work, can we express it by saying" he gets or goes off work"?
    Your original question hasn't quite been answered.

    Neither of those means that he comes back from work.

    He comes back from work at six o'clock.:tick: = After he's through working for the day, he regularly arrives home at six. We'd usually say "comes home from work" or "arrives home from work".
    He gets off work at 5:30.:tick: = He regularly leaves his job at 5:30. "Gets off" tells us that he is employed by someone else and he is obliged to work until 5:30.
    He leaves work at 5:30.:tick: = He regularly leaves the place where he works at 5:30. He may be employed by someone else, or he may be self-employed (in which case it's his decision to leave at 5:30).
    He goes off work at 5:30.:cross: This sounds like someone unfamiliar with idiomatic English.
     
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