Why the imperfect is used and not the preterit in:"puesto que era mi cumpleaños "

NicoleB1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Why the imperfect is used and not the preterit in:"puesto que era mi cumpleaños "

Hello, 

RE: Kwizbot           puesto que era mi cumpleaños  You                         puesto que fue mi cumpleaños

I was wondering why the imperfect was used here and not the preterit since the birthday was yesterday, which is a definite period in time and is now complete.   

Thank you. 

Nicoel

Asked 4 months ago
InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Nicole

Even though by the text you know her birthday was yesterday, you can still use the imperfect instead of the preterite. If you say "puesto que era mi cumpleaños", you are seeing your birthday as something that "was happening" (yesterday), as an ongoing action without seeing the "end" of it, without seeing it "completed". 

As a contrast sentence, if you say "Ayer fue mi cumpleaños" you refer to a finished action with an beginning and an end. 

Here is a lesson that will help you see this difference:

Using El Imperfecto vs El indefinido (general use)

Un saludo

Inma

NicoleB1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Hola Inma,

Thank you for your quick reply.  I am still having a bit of a problem with this one despite reviewing the lesson you suggested.  I usually have a pretty good handle on these two tenses, but am having a problem with this situation:  I don't see how the "birthday" had no beginning or end, because the day is over.  Or is it that a "birthday" is an ongoing thing, that recurs every year?

I guess it would be easier if it were a "birthday party", then you would definitely use the preterit as the party had a beginning and an end. 

Is there another way of explaining it?  Sorry to be harping on this.  I appreciate your patience.

Nicole

NicoleB1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Hola Inma,

I realized that I never got a reply to my second question.  Could you please have a look? Thank you.Nicole

Why the imperfect is used and not the preterit in:"puesto que era mi cumpleaños "

Hello, 

RE: Kwizbot           puesto que era mi cumpleaños  You                         puesto que fue mi cumpleaños

I was wondering why the imperfect was used here and not the preterit since the birthday was yesterday, which is a definite period in time and is now complete.   

Thank you. 

Nicoel

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