“Listen, I don't want any trouble.”

English Lesson: Listen, I don't want any trouble.

You're at a bar. A big, muscular guy is threatening you because you were talking to his girlfriend. You don't want to fight him, so you say this.

Listen, I don't want any trouble.

Listen.

When someone's angry at you and you want them to stop being angry, you can use the word "Listen" to introduce your sentence. For example:

Listen, I don't want to fight about this.

Listen, I'm sorry, OK?

Listen, I'm willing to let this go if you are.

"Listen" at the beginning of a sentence can have other functions, too. It can introduce an uncomfortable topic like this:

Listen, do you mind if I crash on your couch for a night or two?

In general, "Listen" signals that you're expressing your real emotions about something.

I don't want any trouble.

This set phrase means "I don't want to fight you." Use it when a stranger seems to be angry at you, and seems to want to fight you.

"I don't want any trouble" sounds a little bit weak and frightened.


(Print this lesson)