Behaviour and attitudes

A. Behaviour to yourself and others

1. Anna often looks straight through you but I think it may be because she’s short sighted
Meaning : behaves as if you do not see someone either because you do not notice them or because you are ignoring them
2. I am sorry I am leaving you in the lurch but I’ve got to get to a meeting by 10 a.m
Meaning : leave someone at a time when they need you to stay and help them
3. The teacher will give you a rough time if you don’t finish the book
Meaning : make things difficult for someone
4. Ray’s been trying to keep a lid on his emotions, but every now and then his anger erupts.
Meaning : control the level of something in order to stop it increasing
5. Sophie used to be so elegant, but now she’s really let herself go
Meaning : either take less care of your appearance or relax completely and enjoy yourself
6. The newspapers have blown the dispute out of all proportion
Meaning : behaves as if something that has happened is much worse that it really is

B. Attitudes towards events
When we got to our holiday destination, it was a very long climb up to the cottage that we were renting. John thought nothing of it but I found it quite difficult. However, when we got to the top, the view was so beautiful that it brought a lump to my throat. We were only going to be there for two weeks, so we were determined to make the most of it. Then my mother rang to say that my grandmother had been taken ill and her life was hanging in the balance. Of course, everything else faded/paled into insignificance then and we agreed that we wouldn’t dream of staying away in those circumstances. We caught the next plane home and spent the flight trying to come to terms with the thought that she might die. However, thank goodness, when we got to the hospital, she was sitting up completely recovered and very apologetic that she had spoiled our holiday.

thought nothing of = did something that other people found difficult very easily
brought a lump to my throat = found it so moving that I wanted to cry
make the most of it = take full advantage of something because it may not last long
hanging in the balance = no one knows what will happen to it in the future
faded/paled into significance = did not seem at all important when compared to something else
wouldn’t dream of = would never do something because we think it is wrong
come to terms with = start to accept emotionally and to deal with difficult situation

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