Life is like a piano, what you get out of it depends on how you play it………… Via @TamaraLynne_
— Brian Lorde (@musikkidd) July 3, 2012
Last week, I introduced a tweet that had two phrasal verbs in it. I talked about ‘become of’ last week, but this week I’d like to talk about ‘depend on’.
Some common ways you’ll see the phrase used are:
“It depends on whether or not you like (something)”
“It varies depending on (something)”
(something) depends on (something)
To ‘depend on’ something is to ‘rely’ on it. The two things are connected. For example, children depend on their parents for everything they need.
Because ‘depends on’ shows need or some kind of relationship, there are many ways you can use it. You can easily make conditional statements using ‘whether or not’ with ‘depends on’.
A: Should I order the curry?
B: It depends on whether or not you like Indian food.
You can also say something changes, or varies, ‘depending on’ some condition.
My mood varies depending on ho much sleep I got the night before.
A lot of times, you will also hear people say something as simple as, “That / It depends.” They will then explain what it ‘depends on’.
f you ask someone on a date, and they reply, “That depends. Are you buying?” you might want to find a new date…
Situations & Examples
Read the situations, but write down your own sentence using today’s target. When you finish, click ‘Show Example’. Share your own sentences in the comments!
You and a friend are talking about good movies you have watched recently. He tells you about one horror movie that he thinks is the best movie of the year. He also knows you’re not a fan of horror movies. He tells you that he thought it was great, but isn’t sure if you would like it because you don’t like horror movies. He says,
“I thought it was great, but I guess it depends on whether or not you like horror movies.”
You are talking to a friend about how high your property taxes have become. You both wished they would be lowered. You then remember some countries who did lower them recently. They lowered them to get entrepreneurs back after they had escaped the high taxes before. They believed it was necessary for economic recovery. You explain this by saying,
“Some countries lowered property tax because they believed economic recovery depended on entrepreneurs to move back home.”
You are trying to make plans for a lunch date. You haven’t been seeing this person for long, so you’re still trying to get to know her. You ask her where she wants to eat. She tells you she will text message you on the day because she wants to eat changes, or varies. The weather makes her want to eat different stuff. She tells you,
“What I eat for lunch varies depending on the weather.”
Your company usually has a small summer bonus. The day before you usually get the bonus, your boss calls everyone into a meeting. She explains that it’s been a hard year financially, and they will not be able to give a bonus this year. This is really bad news for you since you already bought a new TV, planning to use the bonus to pay off your credit card. You tell your co-worker,
“Oh no! I was depending on the usual summer bonus to pay off a new TV I just bought yesterday!”