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The universal migraine

Speaking: what is love? What do you think about these quotes.
  1. Decide which ones are negative about love, which are positive and which are neutral.
  2. Discuss with other students what point you think each quote is trying to make and whether you agree with it.
Love is a universal migraine,
A bright stain on the vision,
Blotting out reason.
 (Robert Graves 1895-1985)

Love is like quicksilver in the hand. Leave the fingers open and it stays. Clutch it, and it darts away.     
(Dorothy Parker 1893-1967).

Grammar check: gerund v. infinitive

1 Read the following article and answer these questions. Put the marked verbs into the correct word form, gerund or infinitive or even noun form!

  1. Is Jin Ye married to the man she loves?
  2. Is Lien Hua married?

The Lost World:

ding dong Where women sing to get a husband Jin Ye, 23, sings all the time. She sings to her children, she sings while tending the small vegetable path behind her house, and singing was a crucial ingredient in the romantic 5-year courtship with her husband. In the mountains of southern China, home to the ethnic Dong community, people communicate largely in song.
Jin Ye tells the story she remembers her parents
(1 - tell) ____________ her as a child about a young man called Jing Bi (Golden Coin) who introduced songs to the people. "One day he decided (2 - go) to go on a long walk. He walked so far that he reached the Kingdom of Heaven. The gates were opened and he saw some young girls who were singing and dancing marvelously. He stayed for seven days and nights and managed (3 learn) ____________ the songs by heart. Then, when he returned home, he tried (4 - teach) ____________ his people what he knew. Songs have been important to us ever since." "Here," says Jin Ye, "we love (5 - sing) ____________ and dance. We enjoy (6 - sing) ____________ alone or accompanied by a violin. By singing love songs, we fall in love." Singing plays such an important part of life that married couples are not allowed (7 - live) ____________ together until their families rule that their voices are in perfect harmony. Only then can they hope (8 - have) ____________ a long and happy union. Jin Ye and her husband lived apart for five years, meeting each day to sing 'separation' songs until their songs were compatible. "Song stirs the soul," says Jin Ye. "When our voices harmonise well, it proves we will get along." There is even a Dong proverb 'Whoever cannot sing cannot expect (9 - marry) ____________ Jin Ye laughs as she talks about her husband's singing.
"The first time my husband offered (10 - marry) ____________ me I thought he sang really badly. My boyfriend was much better."
Although some young people do now marry by mutual consent, even independent-minded girls like Jin Ye will agree (11) [abide] ____________ by the decision of their elders. "Every parent wishes an easier life for their children, which is why I listen to them. It was love at first sight with my boyfriend we met at the evening singing meetings but he came from a poor family and my parents wouldn't accept him so I couldn't continue (12) [see] ____________ him. They preferred (13) ____________ the man who is now my husband."
Jin Ye doesn't regret (14) [marry] ____________ her husband and sees no conflict between the freedom girls enjoy before marriage, when they are allowed (15 (have)) ____________ different boyfriends, and having a husband chosen for them. 'Love and marriage are two different things,' she says. Some couples rarely see each other after their marriage, either because they live a long way apart or, quite simply, because they are not in love. Divorce is rare, but is accepted if a marriage fails. Jin Ye's best friend, Lien Hua, managed (16 divorce) ____________ her husband to marry the man she loved, but it was difficult and expensive. 'She married a man from another village,' Jin Ye explains. 'As they only met rarely she started (17 [see]) ____________ her old lover. When her husband's family found out, they demanded that the liaison should end, but Lien Hua wanted a divorce. Her husband refused (18 [agree]) ____________ to the divorce at first, so they had to negotiate and Lien Hua's family had to hand back the entire dowry, and a prized buffalo.'
Read the article again and decide if the numbered verb in each case should be a gerund, an infinitive or if it could be either.

Love prepositions - Complete the gaps

As soon as John met Amanda, he fell head over heels (19) ____________ with her. They got to know each other when John noticed her loaded (20) ____________ with shopping and offered to give her a hand. Amanda is a bit of a dreamer and her mother always says she has her head (21) ____________ the clouds.

Nevertheless, she has a very good position as an MP's personal Assistant and she has set her heart (22) ____________ getting a job in the prime Minister's office. She says that having to cope (23) ____________ the demands of life in politics keeps her on her toes. Amanda talks a lot about her job, and, at first, John was all ears. But now he has to bite his tongue to stop himself (24) ____________ telling her how bored he is with hearing (25) ____________ everything 'her' MP says or does.

Today when I bumped into him (26) ____________ town, John was down (27) ____________ the mouth because Amanda had decided to go to a conference with her MP rather than (28) ____________ the holiday they had planned together. 'She is breaking my heart', John said. 'I'm sure she likes her MP more than she likes me'. I racked my brain but I could not think of anything that would put his mind (29) ____________ rest. All I could do was promise to keep my fingers crossed (30) ____________ him.
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