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Quiz 1: Vocabulary Focus
  1. Tonight I have to a paper I am writing.
  2. This morning I forgot to some towels for the gym.
  3. I called see how you are doing.
  4. I left my hat at school. Can you for me?
  5. I forgot today was a holiday. thinking?
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character illustration by Kazue Takahashi

Situation 37 The Mistake
Erina has her first day at work but makes a big mistake and has two work with Mike to fix it.

  • Transcript
  • Audio Slide Show
  • Audio Notes

What was I thinking?

Oh, my gosh. What was I thinking?

The phrase 'What was I thinking?' is used to show the speaker made a mistake and regrets it. You can also say 'What were you thinking?' if listener thinks the speaker made a big mistake. Notice the following:

  1. I forgot to put gas in my car. Ugh! What was I thinking?
  2. You forgot your wife's birthday! What were you thinking?

pick it up

I should be back in ten minutes to pick it up.

Here, the phrase 'pick it up' means to go and collect something. You can pick up a thing, like a pizza, or you can pick up a person, as in pick up the kids at school. Notice the following.

  1. My dry cleaning should be done. I need to pick it up today.
  2. She went to pick her friend up at the airport.

throw in

Why don't you throw in a extra order of breadsticks.

Here, the phrase throw in means to include something. When you throw something in, you can add it to something else even though it was not needed. Here are some more uses:

  1. The teacher threw in a few difficult questions for the smart students.
  2. When I opened my lunch, I was happy to see my mom threw in some chocolates.

just to

Throw in some breadsticks just to make him happy.

Here the phrase 'just to' means 'in order to'. The word 'just' means 'simply' or 'only' and shows the main reason for doing something. Notice the following:

  1. You should take extra clothes just to be safe.
  2. She stayed late just to make sure the work got done.

work on it

I will work on it right now.

The phrase 'work on it' just means to 'do something'. Here 'work on it' means make the pizza. Notice the following uses of the phrase 'work on it'.

  1. I have not finished the assignment. I am still working on it.
  2. I can't finish the project now, but we will work on it next week.