I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I care for

JungKim

Senior Member
Korean
A gaming headset review has this:
Something else that surprised me was how comfortable these were to wear. The ear cups are large and generously stuffed with soft padding. They quickly and effortlessly contour around your head, and feel very natural to wear for long periods. I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I care for, but it was not bad at all, and something that is more or less unavoidable when wearing over the ear headphones.
Does 'care for' here mean 'like'?
Also, is it possible to say "I'd care for" instead of "I care for"? What's the meaning difference between the two?
 
  • JungKim

    Senior Member
    Korean
    Not in this sentence. You could use "than I'd care for" if you were talking about a situation that you hadn't experienced, to refer to how you think you'd react to it.
    So you're saying that only in a hypothetical situation do you use "you'd care for", right?

    But if "you'd care for" means "you'd like", I'm sure you can say "I'd like to..." in a real situation that you're experiencing. Why not "I'd care for..." in a real situation then?
     

    JungKim

    Senior Member
    Korean
    After you try on a headset, you can say, "I'd like my ears to get a little less warm," can you not?
    If so, I wonder why you cannot say, "I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I'd care for".
     

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    you can say, "I'd like my ears to get a little less warm," can you not?
    Yes, you can but that's something you want, not something you've already got. You're saying you'd like your ears to be less warm because they are not less warm.

    I wonder why you cannot say, "I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I'd care for"
    Here you're talking about something that's actually happened - your ears have got warmer than was comfortable. And that feeling is one that you don't care for, not one that you wouldn't care for.
     

    JungKim

    Senior Member
    Korean
    Here you're talking about something that's actually happened - your ears have got warmer than was comfortable. And that feeling is one that you don't care for, not one that you wouldn't care for.
    Honestly, I'm not following you. In that comparative construction, you're comparing what's actually happened with your own preference, i.e., how you would like it to be or how you would care for it to be.

    And a Forbes article starts with this paragraph:
    A few months ago, I wrote a column about a situation I've experienced and witnessed more than I'd care for: being the only woman participating in a meeting or project—and thus being expected to become the team's default administrative assistant. This piece struck a chord with readers of both genders, and many shared experiences that, although not directly related to administrative tasks, fell into the category of ambivalent or benevolent sexism.
    Here, the writer's talking about a situation she's actually "experienced and witnessed", but she still used 'would' in the comparative clause.
     

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    In that comparative construction, you're comparing what's actually happened with your own preference,
    That's exactly what the speaker of the original sentence was doing. He/she was comparing what actually happened (ears getting warm) with personal preference (he/she would have preferred less warmth).

    As for the Forbes article, I think "more than I care for" would have been better. I hesitate to say that "more than I'd care for in that context is wrong" because now I think I might have come across it too, and it's probably used by many, but I feel "more than I care for" is what's needed in that context. The sentence talks about what she has already witnessed or experienced and the hypothetical "would" doesn't in my opinion fit there.
     

    JungKim

    Senior Member
    Korean
    ...
    the hypothetical "would" doesn't in my opinion fit there.
    As I have mentioned in post #3, I'm not sure why you think the "would" must denote a hypothetical.
    When you say, "I'd like something" or "I'd like to do something" or "I'd like something to do some other thing", you're not really talking about a hypothetical, you're talking about a real situation. the "would" merely indicates indirectness of your speech.
    That's why -- I think -- you can easily use the same "would" when you express your own preference. You want to be indirect about your preference. No?
     

    Scott AM

    Senior Member
    English - Canada
    As I have mentioned in post #3, I'm not sure why you think the "would" must denote a hypothetical.
    When you say, "I'd like something" or "I'd like to do something" or "I'd like something to do some other thing", you're not really talking about a hypothetical, you're talking about a real situation. the "would" merely indicates indirectness of your speech.
    That's why -- I think -- you can easily use the same "would" when you express your own preference. You want to be indirect about your preference. No?
    Yes, one use of "would", as you mention, is to be "indirect" or "polite" as you mention - I would like some more oatmeal, which is more indirect than I want some more oatmeal.

    One more usage is as a hypothetical/conditional. If I made a gaming headset, the gamer's ears would not get too hot.

    A problem that I have with your example sentence is that adding "would" doesn't really make the sentence less direct.
    I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I would care for
    I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I care for


    This isn't like the difference between saying "would like" and "want", where the action word changes. In this case, the action "I care for" doesn't change. So adding "would" makes it sound like a conditional phrase instead, which as Barque explained, doesn't work.

    Here's a conditional version of the same sentence that works (it's a little wordy for my preference, but that's beside the point).
    I would be afraid that my ears might get a bit more warm than I would care for.

    And here's a past-tense version of the sentence using "would" as well. "Would" is also the past tense of "will".
    When I wore the headset, my ears would get warmer than I wanted them to.
     

    JungKim

    Senior Member
    Korean
    This isn't like the difference between saying "would like" and "want", where the action word changes. In this case, the action "I care for" doesn't change. So adding "would" makes it sound like a conditional phrase instead, which as Barque explained, doesn't work.

    Here's a conditional version of the same sentence that works (it's a little wordy for my preference, but that's beside the point).
    I would be afraid that my ears might get a bit more warm than I would care for.

    And here's a past-tense version of the sentence using "would" as well. "Would" is also the past tense of "will".
    When I wore the headset, my ears would get warmer than I wanted them to.
    I'm not sure I understand what you're saying, regarding the action word changing or not changing.
    In any case, could you help me distinguish between the OP's version with "would" and the construction in the Forbes article in post #7?
    (1) I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I'd care for
    (2) I wrote a column about a situation I've experienced and witnessed more than I'd care for
    That is, you say (1) doesn't work. But why does (2) work then?
     

    Scott AM

    Senior Member
    English - Canada
    I'm not sure I understand what you're saying, regarding the action word changing or not changing.
    If you want to say I want that, but you don't want to sound too direct, you could replace "want" with "would like". I would like that. "Would like" is a different verb from "want", and is softer.

    In any case, could you help me distinguish between the OP's version with "would" and the construction in the Forbes article in post #7?
    (1) I did notice my ears got a bit more warm than I'd care for
    (2) I wrote a column about a situation I've experienced and witnessed more than I'd care for
    That is, you say (1) doesn't work. But why does (2) work then?
    For what it's worth, I don't think sentence #2 works. If we remove the contraction, it says

    I wrote a column about a situation I've experienced and witnessed more than I would care for.

    The sentence is a bit sloppy. Is the writer saying that she experienced and witnessed more during that situation than she wanted to? If that's the case, it should be written I wrote a column about a situation where I experienced and witnessed more than I cared to.

    Of course, the context shows what she means - that she has seen this situation more times that she likes. The sentence could have been written: I wrote a column about a situation that I've experienced and witnessed more often than I have wanted.
     

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    But why does (2) work then?
    I don't think it does.:)

    She's talking about a situation that she has experienced and witnessed, and she should know whether she cares for it or not.

    So, if she says "more than I would care for" in that sentence, it sounds as if she hasn't experienced it, and therefore is saying that if she experienced it that much, she wouldn't care for it. But that's not the case.

    Slowly cross-posted.
     
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