lesson 173 – I’ve been meaning to tell you…

Learn English: Daily Easy English Expression 0173: I’ve been meaning to tell you…

what does this mean? “I’ve been meaning to phone Jane. I keep forgetting.”
First, you are correct; in this context, ‘meaning’ means ‘intending’.
As for the tense, we use that tense when we have been wanting to phone Jane for some time now (that’s important – I’ve been meaning to do something implies my intent has persisted for some length of time). Furthermore, it also implies that I still haven’t called her. (If I had phoned Jane already, then the verb tenses would change: I had been meaning to phone Jane, but I kept forgetting. That implies that I eventually overcame my forgetfulness and made the phone call.)

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