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st: dates in the 'if' condition

To   <>
Subject   st: dates in the 'if' condition
Date   Tue, 9 Aug 2011 15:28:07 +0200

I have not used Stata in time-series context before and would like to ask
a rather simple thing. Having the time variable in a %tq format, it displays the date label but the underlying value
is a number. I have tried to condition with the `if' statement referring to the label instead of the underlying value, but to no avail. Is there any way to do so?
Here is an example:
              storage  display     value
variable name   type   format      label      variable label
time          float  %tq                    

keep if time==1997q4
1997q4 invalid name

keep if time=="1997q4"
type mismatch

Thank you,

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