The Service

From Twitter

A. Was your dad in the service?
B. Yes–in __ navy.
A. And yours?
B. __ army.
A. Where was he stationed?
B. Alaska. My uncle was in two branches: __ Navy in world war II and the army in during the Korean war.
A. Really?
B. Yeah, but he bailed before Vietnam.

* a
* that

Answers And Explanation
The answer in both cases is ‘the,’ because this is the way we talk: a special, common thing–known to everyone, such as the branches of the military, take the definite article ‘the,’ for that special quality and because of their being so common, but most importantly because they are singular countable entities.

Getting It Right

From Twitter:

(1.) Can you __ this with me and make sure it’s good? I would like the
(2.) instructor to be impressed when he __ it.

* see
* look
* look over
* look for
* go over
* looks over
* inspect

Answers and Explanations:
1. go over means to review, proof or proof-read.
2. looks over (third-person-singular-present form, which is needed here) means to check, but from the position of a person who knows better, like an advisor, coach, instructor, a teacher, a boss or some other a superior.


A. You like Korea? Why?
1. B. I like Korea for _ food,
2. _ friendliness and
3. _ down-to-Earth nature of
4. _ people.

* a
* the
* some

Answers And Explanation:

  1. the food (of Korea)
  2. the friendliness (of Korea)
  3. the down-to-Earth nature (of Korea)
  4. the people (of Korea)
    The known nature of these things is why they take ‘the’ as an article to identify them as connected to Korea.


From Twitter:
A. Trumper: What’s wrong w/ defying subpoenas?
B. Patriot: Huh?
A: Self-defense is a right!
B: So, ya go to Congress and do it!
A: If not guilty, why go?
B: That’s not his decision. And defying Congress is illegal.

A subpoena is:
*a court order to appear
*a ticket
*a penalty

Answer: “a court order to appear”
a subpoena is a letter from the state, federal court-or from the Congress (the House of Representatives in the USA–(one of the three co-equal branches of the US government) informing a citizen that s/he must appear in (come to) court or Congress to answer questions at a hearing or face criminal charges in a trial.

Following this order is not an option and when someone violates it (doesn’t appear or come to the court or Congress) s/he is “in contempt” of court or Congress; this is especially serious (bad) if it is the behavior of federal employees such as the President or his staff, because it signifies (shows) that s/he or they feel they are above the law; in this case, the law that gives equal power to the three branches of government.

This is particularly serious when considering that the whole point of the American democracy and it’s republic is to share power-meaning to prevent power from being consolidated (concentrated) in one man or body, such as in a king or his staff.

So when the Trump administration began defying (disobeying) the law and not honoring (respecting and following) subpoenas from the Congress, it meant that the power in Washington was shifting to the President and his staff, meaning that the peoples’ power in the Congress and Senate was being disrespected and thus that the president was above the law; this is how democracy begins to crumble.


From Twitter

A: Where do you want me to put the cookies, mom?
B: Not in your stomach–til after dinner.
A: So–where?
1. B: Put ’em __ the fridge.
2. A: Not __ the cabinet with the snacks?
3. B: No, __ the fridge, so your little brother doesn’t eat them now.
A: Okay Ma.

a. on
b. on top of
c. in
d. at

Answers And Explanation:
1. b., on top of more specific than on and refers to the very top of something.
2. c., inWe don’t usually keep cookies in the refrigerator (AKA “fridge”)
3. b., on top ofMother is repeating herself.

On A Train

From Twitter:

  1. A: Please __ all the way in, so the rude, inconsiderate people pushing to get in–crushing us like farm animals–can stop that.
    B: Huh?
    2. A: Please __ as far as you can–in, so others may enter too.
    B: We don’t mind.
    A: We do.

    a. go
    b. step
    c. set foot
    d. tread

Answers and Explanations
1. b., step meaning to walk–by putting one foot forward after another and is used with ‘into’ (or with ‘in,’ ‘on,’ ‘over,’ and ‘around.’
2. a., go meaning to proceed or continue moving.

寝ると眠る=Fall Asleep?

From Twitter:
A. What time did you go to bed?
B. Dunno–2?
A. Why do ya look tired?
1. B. I didn’t __ until 3.
2. A. __ to sleep later then?
But lack of sleep reduces memory, memory organization, brain cleansing and testosterone–even testicle size!
B. Yeah?
A. Yup!

a. go to sleep
b. fall asleep

Answers and Explanation:
1. b., fall asleep, which means to slip into the brain-rest-state of unconsciousness
2. a., go to sleep, which means to (sometimes to go to the bed and to) try to fall into the brain-rest-state of unconsciousness

Flat Earth?

From Twitter:

A. You think Earth is flat?
1. B. Yes. __ it isn’t.
2. A. I can show you the __.
3. B. What’s your __?
A. Ever seen a lunar eclipse?
B. Sure.
A. Earth’s shadow is curved on the moon.
B. That’s the moon’s curve!
A. Ug. So–fly to 13,624 ft, or higher!
B. Oh.

a. proof
b. evidence
c. prove

Answers and Explanation:
1. c., prove (a verb)
2. a., proof or b., evidence (both nouns)
3. a., proof or b., evidence (both nouns)

Sleep Time

From Twitter:

1. Mom: It’s _.
Kid: Okay, Mom, but can I get something to eat?
2. Mom: After you _.
Kid: I’m hungry now!
Mom: You ate a ton. Pajamas–now.

3. Mom: Okay, you ate; now _!
Kid (from bed): Mom!
4. Mom: _.

a. Sleep
b. Go to sleep
c. Get ready for bed
d. bed time
e. Go to bed

Answers & Explanation:
1. d. Bed time means “the time one should go to the bed and begin to sleep.
2. c. Get ready for bed means “prepare to sleep.”
3. e. Go to bed means go to the bed room, get in the bed and sleep.
4. b. Go to sleep means “begin to sleep.

To The Moon Again

From Twitter:

Pick the best answers:

1. __ the rocket, the SLS* will take Americans to the moon next time.
2. __ selecting crews, NASA will have a male/female landing team this time.

a. about
b. concerning
c. regarding
e. in terms of
f. with
g. as for
h. in the case of

1. d. as for
2. e. in terms of

Number 1. First the bad answers:
a., About works in conversation but is not the best literate answer. It is a casual beginning–not lending the proper sophistication to the subject–but again, it is an “okay” basic preposition for the phrase.
b., Concerning also works, but … well, but nothing. It is fine, but it lends a feeling of awkwardness and perhaps too much formality; it also sounds like there is a problem. What we are really looking for is a neutral preposition to introduce the rocket.
f., With is too informal and sound as if we have already mentioned the type of rocket.
h., In the case of also sounds too specific, like with, meaning it sounds like we have spoken of the rocket type already.

The best answer is g., as for, because it is like about, but lends a feeling of uncertainty, until we get to the certainty… of the type of rocket that has been chosen.
But the best reason is that… though we can use it for selecting crews–a process– in this case it is better to be paired with a single noun (rocket); so we use as for, more than in terms of for single things or people.

Number 2. e. In terms of is the best answer for ‘selecting crews’ because ‘terms’ suggests separate ideas or procedures, and a selection process is about that kind of thing–procedures, especially with a partitive (the ‘of’ portion), suggesting parts (in this case of a process).