14. Collocations - Differences and Disagreements

14. Collocations - Differences and Disagreements

Sam grills the Mayor over Downhaven's drug problem

Main Practice:  Collocations - Differences and Disagreements
Revision:             Present Perfect  -  however  - Future Continuous   

(to) encounter difficulties -  (Formal) to meet with difficullties, i.e.
  • The team encountered difficulties when they tried climbing the north face of the mountain.

(to) give your word  -  make a promise, i.e.
  • I give you my word, we shall do everything possible to discover who stole the money.
  • The new company director gave her word that jobs would be protected.

(a) gross exaggeration  -  an extreme attempt to make something seem larger, more 
                                                   important, etc. than it really is, (a big exaggeration), i.e.
  • It's a gross exaggeration to say that one hundred thousand people attended the political rally. The police say it was no more than fifty thousand.
  • You're grossly exaggerating to say the meeting was a "great success": plenty of people disagreed with your proposals.

inside of (time)  -  (informal expression) to say something will happen before a
                                     certain time; the of  is optional,  i.e.

  • The house will be finished inside (of) six months.
  • That restaraunt will be out of business inside (of) a year: it's in the wrong location.

in the near future / very near future  -  soon or very soon, i.e.
  • In the near future every new car will be electric.

(to) keep things in proportion  -  to keep a balanced view of a situation, i.e.
  • Yes, this is the second crash with this kind of plane. But let's keep things in proportion: 9,000 of the planes are in operation and the accident rate is only 0.92 per million flights. 

(to) make progress  -  verb collocation for progress (improving / developing) , i.e.
  • He's made very good progress with his school studies this year.
  • The peace negoiations between the two countries are making good progress.

(the / a) vast majority  -  most and more, a great majority, i.e.
- A hundred and fifty thousand pounds a weeek! Footballers earn far too much money.
- Yes, crazy money, but the vast majority of players are not paid that kind of money.
  • I know the job sounds exciting but the vast majority of the time I'm sitting behind a desk with a computer.
Samantha is a journalist. She *grills the town's mayor over Downhaven's drug problem.
*to grill someone - (informal) to question someone rigorously or aggressively.

Complete the sentences with the correct collocation.

Sam:      Mayor, isn't it true that Downhaven now has a serious drug problem?

Mayor:   No, that's .

Sam:       But four young people have died of drug use in the last six months.

Mayor:   And that, of course, is a terrible tragedy. However, we must
                 . There are some fifteen thousand
                 young people in Downhaven and  do not use drugs.

Sam:       But when you became mayor you to clear the town of drugs
                  inside of one year.

Mayor:   Our anti-drugs policy has but we've also .

Sam:       Such as?

Mayor:   Certain drugs have become cheaper and drugs gangs have moved in from London.

Sam:       So what are the Council's plans now?

Mayor:   To continue co-operating with the police and to revise our drug policy


Complete the sentences with the language you've practised.

give you my word  - the vast majority  -  making good progress  -  in the near future  enountered difficulties  -  a gross exaggeration  -  keep things in proportion

1.  It's to say this product can help any smoker to give up cigarettes: the
     success rate is only 58%.

2.  Yes, the project has but let's : the
      weather did cause delays but most of the complex has now been built. You can't deny that
      we're and I  that it will be completed on time.

3.   of homes will have a robot doing the household