Tuesday the 23rd of April, 2019
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Thursday the 31st of March, 2005
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RUB SALT INTO THE WOUND

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Good morning, Today we will be looking at the final query from Chris's students. Today's expression is: to rub salt into the wound It means: to make a difficult situation even worse for someone. Example 1: The recent killing of an Italian secret service agent by American soldiers has rubbed salt into Berlusconi's wounds. Example 2: The publication by the press of photographs of the actor in a nightclub with a top model have rubbed salt into his wounds. His wife of twelve years has now decided to file for divorce, citing the pictures as evidence. If you have any questions about this expression, please don't hesitate to contact me, or you can contact Chris, who submitted these questions. Thanks once again to Chris's students for the interesting expressions. Have a good day!



Wednesday the 30th of March, 2005
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TO ADD FUEL TO THE FIRE

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Good morning. Today we will look at the second query from a group of our students. Today's expression is: to add fuel to the fire It means: to make an argument or bad situation worse. Example 1: The recent killing of an Italian secret service agent by American soldiers has added fuel to the fire of the anti-war campaigners arguments. Example 2: Photographs of the actor in a nightclub with a top model have added fuel to the fire of rumours about a separation from his wife of twelve years. If you have any questions about this expression, please don't hesitate to contact me. Thanks once again to Chris's students for the interesting question, and thank you to Chris for passing it on to me. I hope you have a good day!



Tuesday the 29th of March, 2005
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ON LOAN

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Good morning. I hope everybody enjoyed their long Easter weekend! Today we are going to begin the first in a series of expressions that one of our groups of students, taught by Chris, asked about. Thank you Asun, Juan, Mr.Vega and Mr. Blasco for your interesting queries. Today's expression is: On loan It means: an act of borrowing or lending something or someone (in sports). Example 1: Guernica, the masterpiece by Picasso, was on loan to the MOMA in New York until democracy came to Spain. Example 2: The footballer Eto'o was out on loan to Mallorca before returning to Real Madrid. Now he plays for Barça. Example 3: I'm sorry, but the archive you have requested isn't available. It's on loan to the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam. If you have any questions about this expression, please don't hesitate to contact me. Thanks once again to Chris's students for the interesting question, and thank you to Chris for collaborating in the preparation of today's Daily Vitamin. Have a great day!



Thursday the 24th of March, 2005
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OBLIGE vs. MAKE

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Good morning. Today we are going to look at two more verbs with a similar meaning but with different Verb Patterns (grammatical forms). Today's words are: to oblige someone to do something; to make someone do something. They mean: to force someone to do something. Notice that with the verb oblige, after the object someone, we use TO + infinitive verb. However, when we use the verb make, after the object someone, we use an infinitive verb WITHOUT the word TO. Similar to let and allow, this is a grammatical difference. Otherwise, the words more or less have the same meaning. However, to make someone do something is perhaps more common, and it is therefore more informal. To oblige someone to do something is used more formally and is usually used in the passive form (be obliged to do something). Compare these examples: Example 1: Their teacher made them do extra work after class because they had been naughty. Their teacher obliged them to do extra work after class because they had been naughty. (active) They were obliged to do extra work after class because they had been naughty. (passive) Example 2: The customs agents made me unpack my luggage before I could enter the country. The customs agents obliged me to unpack my luggage before I could enter the country. (active) I was obliged to unpack my luggage before I could enter the country. (passive) Example 3: Nobody is making you stay. If you're bored or unhappy, why don't you leave? Nobody is obliging you to stay. If you're bored or unhappy, why don't you leave? You are not obliged to stay. If you're bored or unhappy, why don't you leave? If you have any questions about these verbs, please don't hesitate to contact me. Have a nice day and an excellent long weekend! Remember that there will be no Daily vitamin tomorrow or Monday.



Wednesday the 23rd of March, 2005
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ALLOW vs. LET

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Good morning. As you know, many times there are words that have a similar meaning in English, but the grammar of the words is different. This often happens with verbs. For example, there are verbs that are followed by an infinitive form and other verbs that are followed by a gerund (-ing) form. When we learn these words, we must learn the structure or grammar of the words in order to use them correctly. Today's words are a good example of this. Today's words are: To allow someone to do something and To let someone do something They mean: to permit; to give someone permission to do something. Notice that with the verb allow, after the object someone, we use TO + infinitive verb. However, when we use the verb let, after the object someone, we use an infinitive verb WITHOUT the word TO, sometimes called the bare infinitive. The words basically have the same meaning, but they have a grammatical difference. Compare these examples: Example 1: Do your parents allow you to stay out late at the weekend? Do your parents let you stay out late at the weekend? Example 2: When I was at school, the teachers didn't allow us to chew gum in the classroom. When I was at school, the teachers didn't let us chew gum in the classroom. Example 3: She doesn't allow anyone to smoke in her home. She doesn't let anyone smoke in her home. We call this structure of a verb the Verb Pattern. When you learn one of these verbs, it's important to learn its form or pattern. We will look at other Verb Patterns in future Daily Vitamins. If you have any questions about these verbs, please don't hesitate to contact me. Enjoy the rest of your day!