wasn't about to

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redgiant

Senior Member
Cantonese, Hong Kong
Mike's house was around here somewhere, and I was searching for a glimpse of it. During my previous trips to the warehouse, my ex husband Matt had been driving, and I wasn't about to sound like a teenager asking her father to "please drive by Mike's house." At the moment, Madame and I were still on Union. We passed the intersection with Hoyt......

Background: Madame and I were travelling in a car and I tried to find out Mike's house.

The author tells the tale in Past tense and often uses Past Perfect for reminiscence , so would it have made as much sense to write "and I hadn't been about to sound like......"?
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I don't think the past perfect is good here because the writer is not referring to the times before in the previous trips. Instead she is talking about the more recent past, the one that she is actively describing as she says: "Madame and I were traveling in a car and I tried to find out Mike's house." She doesn't want to sound like a teenager asking her father "please drive by Mike's house". She is in the car with Madame as she feels this way. Her trip with Madame is all taking place in the simple past.
     

    Kitsy

    Senior Member
    English
    it is not reminiscence the author is talking about the moment she is describing, not something that happened before, on her previous trips matt 'had' been driving but on this occasion she did not want to sound like a teenager.
     

    redgiant

    Senior Member
    Cantonese, Hong Kong
    I misunderstood this sentence, assuming that "was about to" is used for the previous trip with ex husband. Thanks for clearing things up. Kitsy and Owlman.
     
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