This one was another request (which makes me so happy): How can you tell when to use drink, drank, or drunk? Or sink, sank, or sunk?

Drink and sink are pretty easy, since they’re in the present tense. (I’m pretty sure nobody gets confused about saying “Drink up!”) But drank and drunk and sank and sunk are both past tense verbs, so how can you tell which one to use?

Drank and sank are simple past tense verbs: “The ship sank.” “I drank too much last night.” But drunk and sunk are a past participle, so they need a helping verb–no, don’t tune out yet, that just means drunk and sunk always appear with a form of “have”: “They have drunk my potion!” “The submarine has been sunk by the spies.”

So here’s my trick: Drunk and sunk have a U in them. Have has a V in it. U and V come right next to each other in the alphabet. S0 use that trick to remember that drunk and sunk should always appear with have.