'You want something' being used as a suggestion

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nowt000

Senior Member
Mandarin
John Murdoch: All change? Excuse me. How do I get to the end of the line?

Train Passenger: You want the Express.

John Murdoch: [after train blows by him] Hey, how come that train didn't stop?

Station Master: That's the Express.

-- Dark City (1998) Quotes

I rarely came across 'you want something' being used as a suggestion. 'You want to do something' would be much more frequent.

Is that a regional use?
 
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    You want rarely means you desire. It's normally a synonym for you need, you should have... It can be followed by a noun (e.g. the express) or an infinitive verb phrase.

    This is standard English, not regional.
     

    nowt000

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    You want rarely means you desire. It's normally a synonym for you need, you should have... It can be followed by a noun (e.g. the express) or an infinitive verb phrase.

    This is standard English, not regional.
    I suspect 'you could use something' is used more frequently than 'you want something'. The latter sounds British to me.
     
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