O formato ING é em minha opinião umas das coisas mais interessantes, mas também que mais confundem as pessoas pois para cada caso ele é utilizado por razões completamente diferentes estabelecidas através de regras gramaticais.
No caso de “Of all things, eating a cake is the last I want to do now”
Utilizamos o formato ing, pois o verbo “to eat” está atuando como um sujeito na frase (sim, uma regra gramatical)
Ruth told me that dancing ballet is one of her favorite hobbies
Jack told me that studying other languages is something I should start thinking about.
Sim, bare infinitive.
Verbs of perception — hear, see, watch — and a handful of other verbs — help, let, and make — will take what is called the bare infinitive, an infinitive without the particle "to." This is true of these verbs only in the active voice.
a. We watched him clear the table.
b. They heard the thief crash through the door.
c. She made me do it.
d. We helped her finish the homework.
• After the had better expression. So, "You had better leave now."
• With the verb help. So, "He helped them find it."
• With the word why. So, "Why reveal it?"
There is a specific situation in which the infinitive is used like an "impersonal future tense", replacing "will". This is done through the construction:
to be + "to" + bare infinitive
Grammatically, this is identical to the instructional "I am to wait outside" construction (above), but does not signify somebody having been issued an instruction; rather, it expresses an intended action, in the same way as "will". This "tense" is used extensively in news reports, eg. –
• The Prime Minister is to visit the West Bank (active)
• Aid is to be sent to war-torn Darfur (passive)
This "future infinitive" construction is interesting in that it only has a future aspect to it in situations where the speaker is significantly distanced from the event. In cases where the subject of the sentence is not quite as distanced from the speaker, then the same construction takes on a sense of instruction or necessity (as in "he is to wait outside", or "he is to go to hospital").
The same construction can be used in conditional clauses - If you are to go on holiday, then you need to work hard (or, conversely, if you want to...then you are to...).
E ainda tem: http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learn ... v149.shtml