Is it correct to say:

I have done the washing up and am now watching TV.


I have done the washing up and I am watching TV now.


Is it correct to say " I have done the washing up and am now watching TV" or "and I am watching TV now"?

The first way is correct. The parallel structure allows you to add any verb after "and" as long as it is applicable to "I," the original subject, regardless of tense. If you had used any part of the first verb phrase then it wouldn't have worked, e.g:

I have washed the dishes, cleaned the table, and am now watching TV.

This example doesn't work because the "have" applies to both the first and second phrase, and doesn't make sense attached to the third.


The first example is acceptable as you wrote it, and the second would be fine if you inserted a comma before it.

"I have done [or finished] the washing up and am now watching TV," or

"I have done [or finished] the washing up, and I am now watching TV."

Using "finished" rather than "done" puts it definitely in the past.

  • 3
    In what dialects of English can you say I have done the washing up and still be doing it (without misleading the people you're talking to)? I don't think finished is any clearer than done here, even if it is more formal. – Peter Shor Dec 13 '15 at 22:11
  • @PeterShor- I agree with you completely. My problem is that I do not understand the meaning of "I am done washing up", a phrase I have never encountered before. I use the phrase, "I'm going to clean up and go to the store," for instance, which means, "I am going to get out of bed, go to the bathroom, shave my neck, trim my beard, floss and brush my teeth, take a shower, comb and dry my hair and mustache, and get dressed so I look presentable enough to go to the store," and I can only assume the OP might mean something similar, but perhaps he means "doing the dishes." I just don't know. – Mark Hubbard Dec 14 '15 at 18:36

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.