LEVEL A1.2/A2.1




My boss gets on my nerves very often (= he makes me angry easily). He gets on badly (= has a bad relationship) with other people, too. Everybody sees he doesn’t like his workmates (= people he works with) very much. He has nothing in common with us (= we are completely different). One day my boss saw our new employee (= a person who works for our company). He asked, „What’s your name?” „John,” answered the man. My boss shouted: „I don’t call anyone by their first name! I don’t want to make friends with you! (= don’t want to be your friend!) I need authority if there is a row (= a bad quarrel)! I refer to my employees by their last name only – Smith, Jones, Baker. Now, what is your last name?” The new guy said, „Darling. My name is John Darling.” „Okay, John, I want to ask you to work in …”



More contexts for the new words:

  • I can rely on him. (= I know I can count on him)
  • We fell out last night. (= We had a quarrel last night




Decide if these sentences are true (T) or false (F). Correct the false ones.


1) If your boss gets on your nerves, you have a good relationship.

2) If you have problems with someone, you get on bad.

3) It’s difficult to be good friends if you have nothing in common with someone.

4) A boss usually has a few employees.

5) If you want to make friends with someone, you want them to like you.

6) If you have a row with someone, it’s not a problem.

7) A friend is someone you can rely on.

8) After you fall out with your friend, one of you should apologise.



Complete each of the questions with one word. Then answer them.


  1. Do you get on …………………. with your boss?
  2. Where do you go to …………………. new friends?
  3. When did you last fall …………………. with someone?
  4. Can you rely …………………. all of your friends?



Let’s look at the verb „to ask„. In the last sentence of the text above the boss said:

Okay, John, I want to ask you to work in …

We can use „to ask” in two ways. The first one is the same as in the example – when we want to use another verb together with „to ask”: to ask somebody to do something

I asked him to help me.
He asked his mother to buy this shirt.

The second one is when we want „to ask” without a verb, only with a noun. In this situation the structure is: to ask somebody for something

I asked him for a new pen.
He asked his mother for this shirt.




A/ Does your new boss make you work very hard?

B/ Very hard? Extremely hard! I’ve been BURNING THE CANDLE AT BOTH ENDS.

If you burn the candle at both ends, work or do other things from early in the morning until late at night and so get very little rest





There are a few phrasal verbs you can use to say that you are very busy at work.


  1. To BE TIED UP = to be so busy that you can’t go anywhere or talk to anyone.

Sorry I haven’t called you recently. I’ve been a bit tied up at work.


  1. To BE SNOWED UNDER = to have so much work that you have problems dealing with it.

My secretary is ill, so I am snowed under with work.


  1. To CATCH UP = to do something you did not have time to do earlier.

After my holiday, I had to catch up with lots of work.




Complete each of the sentences with one word.


  1. Children often ask parents …………………. help them with homework.
  2. Children often ask parents …………………. help with their homework.
  3. I have no time for myself. I’ve been burning the …………………. at both ends.
  4. I am very busy. I am …………………. under with work.





Research shows that the biggest problem at work is often a boss who is a slave driver.  Such a boss will never let you wind down, but will always make sure you are working for the benefit of the company, in order to maximize the profits. Sadly, hard work is often not accompanied by praise, so many employees are now deciding to quit their jobs and find new ones with less demanding bosses.




a slave driver – a boss who makes you work very hard

to wind down – to relax

benefit – good

profits – money made by the company

praise – telling someone how good they are

demanding – needing a lot of time, attention or energy



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  1. F – he makes you angry easily.
  2. F – you get on badly.
  3. T
  4. T
  5. T
  6. F – it is a big problem.
  7. T
  8. T



  1. well/ badly
  2. make
  1. out
  2. on



  1. to
  2. for
  3. candle
  4. snowed