These days, children are having/have too many fizzy drinks.

belissimo

Senior Member
Russian
Hello, everyone,
I was doing an exercise and in this sentence These days, children are having/have too many fizzy drinks I chose are having because of These days.
I thought the verb Have does have meaning 'possess' in this sentence, though the answer is have.
Can you explain why have not are having?
Thanks in advance
 
  • rhitagawr

    Senior Member
    British English
    They're not doing it at this moment or on a particular occasion. They do it generally all the time. If you look up have in the WR dictionary, you'll see eat/drink in definition 14. If you page down to the bottom, you'll see plenty of threads concerning have/eat/drink.
     
    Last edited:

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Doesn't "these days" don't imply 'nowdays', i.e. a tempory situation?
    (Note how a question is asked)
    "These days" is rarely used - it covers an indefinite length of time before and after the event referred to - it means "currently"; it does not mean "now".
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Children consume too many fizzy drinks (these days).
    Children are consuming too many fizzy drinks (these days).
    The continuous form isn't out of the question, with or without "these days".

    "Have" is a verb that isn't used in the continuous form when it means "possess". It could be used here, since it means "consume", but admittedly it sounds a little off. I'd prefer drinking or consuming if I decided to use the continuous form (and I wouldn't here).

    In a different sentence it could work very well: She has been having too much coffee lately.
     

    Jektor

    Senior Member
    English (UK)
    have implies a (habitual) action or state over an extended period of time.
    are having implies action over a shorter (current) length of time.

    "These days children have too many fizzy drinks"
    "The children are having too many fizzy drinks this afternoon"

    There are many previous WordRef threads about "have" and "having":
    forum.wordreference.com - have having
    .
     

    rhitagawr

    Senior Member
    British English
    These days don't imply nowdays, temproralily changing situation?
    I don't think it means these days now but things may change later on. However, I think you could have the continuous form with these days.
    A doctor might say We're seeing more cases of measles these days. He's talking about his own experience and that of his colleagues.
    Children drink too many fizzy drinks these days sounds more general. It's something that's happening in society at large.
    This is a subtle distinction that not everyone may agree with. I wouldn't want to be dogmatic about it. It's only a suggestion.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    It may be me, but I rarely hear or read "these days". To me, it is a phrase, now old-fashioned (if it ever was in fashion) that is taught but not used.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    It may be me, but I rarely hear or read "these days". To me, it is a phrase, now old-fashioned (if it ever was in fashion) that is taught but not used.
    Does "nowadays" work for you? I use it all the time.

    Also note we rarely hear "fizzy drinks", only "carbonated drinks" and we rarely hear that children drink too many carbonated drinks, only that they drink too many "sugary drinks".
     
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