Unit 58 - Infinitive or -ing?(3) - be afraid, need, help

(a) Be afraid to do и be afraid of -ing

I am afraid to do something = Я не хочу что-то делать, поскольку это небезопасно или результат действия мне нежелателен:

- The streets in this city are not safe at night. Many people are afraid to go out alone. (= они не хотят выходить в одиночку, потому что это опасно)

- She was afraid to tell her parents that she had broken the neighbour's window. (= она не хотела говорить об этом родителям, потому что они рассердятся на нее)

I am afraid of something happening = возможность, что случится нечто нежелательное:

- We walked along the path very carefully because it was icy and we were afraid of falling. (not `afraid to fall')

- I don't like dogs. I'm always afraid of being bitten. (not `afraid to be bitten')

Итак, you are afraid to do something, потому что you are afraid of something happening в качестве результата. Сравните:

- The boys were afraid to play football in the garden because they were afraid of breaking a window.

- I was afraid to stay in the sun because I was afraid of getting burnt.

(b) Need to do и need -ing

I need to do something = мне надо что-то сделать:

- I need to take more exercise.

- He needs to work harder.

- I don't need to come to the meeting, do I?

Need -ing = необходимость делать что-то (употребляется поэтому в passive):

- The batteries in this radio need changing. (= необходимость замены)

- This jacket is rather dirty. It needs cleaning. (= необходимость чистки)

- Do you think the grass needs cutting? (= необходимость стрижки)

(c) Help

За help следует инфинитив с to или без:

- Everybody helped (to) clean up after the party.

- Can somebody help me (to) move this table?

Существует выражение `can't help doing something.'

I can't help doing something = Я не cмог удержаться, чтобы не сделать этого:

- I tried to be serious but I couldn't help laughing.

- I'm sorry I broke the glass. Someone pushed me and I couldn't help dropping it.

- He is stupid but it's not his fault. He can't help being stupid.