Talib Kweli is an American rapper who gained recognition through Black Star, a collaboration with fellow MC Mos Def. Quality is Talib Kweli’s fist solo album, which was released in 2002 and considered a classic by many hip-hop fans. The album received critical acclaim as well as some commercial appeal for the track “Get By”, which was produced by Kanye West (adapted from Wikipedia).
This morning, I woke up
Feeling brand new. I jumped up.
Feeling my highs and my lows
In my soul and my goals
Just to stop smoking and stop drinking.
I’ve been thinking. I’ve got my reasons
Just to get by, just to get by
Just to get by, just to get by
Grammar: Stop + Gerund / Infinitive
A gerund is a noun in the form of the present participle (~ing).
An infinitive is the basic form of the verb with to.
- to read
- to sleep
- to write
Some verbs are followed only by gerunds, and other verbs are followed only by infinitives. On the other hand, some verbs can be followed by both.
- He enjoys reading new books.
He enjoys to read new books.
- I want to study Spanish.
I want studying Spanish.
- She likes to listen to hip-hop. She likes listening to hip-hop. Both are correct.
The verb stop can be followed by the gerund and infinitive, but they have different meanings!
stop + gerund – to stop an action, habit or task
stop + infinitive – to stop one action in order to start something different
- I stopped smoking 5 years ago. I used to smoke cigarettes, and I don’t smoke anymore.
- I stopped to smoke a cigarette. I was studying for a test, and I needed to take a break. I stopped studying in order to have a cigarette.
- I want you to stop drinking. Your alcoholism is a problem, and everyone wants you to quit. You should never drink again.
- Let’s stop somewhere to have a drink. I want to stop walking and gave my sore feet a break!
- You should stop playing video games. You have a test tomorrow morning.
- I need to stop exercising to drink water.
- the crack of dawn (idiom) – very early in the morning. I have to stop watching TV now because I have to wake up at the crack of dawn.
- break your back (idiom) – to work very hard and for a long time, especially manual labor. Your mother and father break their backs every day to put food on the table. You should help them by doing your chores!
- get by (phrasal verb) – to manage to live or do something with the money, knowledge and skills you already have. My wife and I don’t make a lot of money, but we get by comfortably on our small salaries.
- a piece of the pie (idiom) – a share of money, profits, etc. If you help me sell these magazine, I will give you a piece of the pie.
- also a slice of the pie or share of the pie
- Do or die! (expression) – Something to say when you need great determination. I cannot try to pass the TOEFL and hope to do well. I must study very hard every day. There are no attempts. Do or die!
- brand new (adjective) – completely new. She bought me a brand new computer!
Did you use to have bad habits? Have you stopped doing them yet? If your friend needed help to stop smoking cigarettes, what would you do? Have you taken a break today? Have you stopped work to do something else? Please write your comments below!