Come on strong

Come on strong

Come On Strong. Avid language learners find their own way of improvement and take charge of their learning.

Avid language learners find their own way of improvement and take charge of their learning. They adopt methods that are best for them as individual learners. They learn from others and experiment. They manage their study of the language, and organise information accordingly. Being a good language learner, one must be creative. Therefore, eager learners experiment with the language and play with the grammar, words, and sounds. They find opportunities to practise the language inside and outside the classroom. They know that language learning is a matter of habit and after all, it is a skill in itself that requires constant practice. Good language learners focus on the meaning of what they can understand, by not getting perturbed, and by continuing to talk or listen without necessarily understanding every word.

Keen language learners should know the importance of mnemonics and other memory strategies to recall what they are learning. They, of course, know that they will make errors work for them and not against them by using linguistic knowledge. Every active language learner is expected to use contextual clues to aid their comprehension of the language. Sometimes it is very essential to make intelligent guesses in order to improve upon a language. They may learn idioms, proverbs, or other phrases knowing what the whole phrase means without necessarily understanding each individual part. This way, they learn certain tricks that keep conversations going. They learn certain production techniques that also fill in the gaps in their own competence. On the whole, good language learners learn different styles of speech or writing to learn to vary their language according to the situation.

Small Talk

At the Post Office

Postal Clerk : What can I do for you today?

Kavya : I need to mail this package to New Delhi, please.

Postal Clerk : OK, let’s see how much it weighs ... it’s about 65 grams. If you send it to express, it will get there tomorrow. Or you can send it on priority and it will get there by Saturday.

Kavya : Saturday is fine. How much will that be?

Postal Clerk : Rs.35/-[thirty-five]. Do you need anything else?

Kavya : Oh, yeah! I almost forgot. I need a book of stamps, too.

Postal Clerk : OK, your total comes to Rs.135/- [rupees one hundred and thirty-five].


What can I do for you today? Notice that this question starts with “What,” so the intonation drops at the end of the question.

Or you can send it priority ... Notice the stress on “or,” which emphasizes that there is another possibility.

Rs.35/- ... Rs.135/- Notice the two different ways the postal clerk announces the price. First he says that it is thirty-five (without the words rupees and), then he says it is one thirty-five rupees.

Oh, yeah! is an expression used here to mean “I just remembered something.” It’s often

followed by “I almost forgot.”

Your total comes to ... is a way of saying “the cost is ....”

Know Your Vocabulary

Choose the closest meaning and tick it.

1. Frequent

a) careless b) impolite

c) happening often

2. Gratitude

a) amount given b) being thankful

c) debt owed

3. Portable

a) easily carried b) forbidden

c) told in secret

4. Abolish

a) eat rapidly b) do away with

c) take prisoner

5. Estimate

a) judge approximately

b) follow closely c) contemplate

6. Generosity

a) self-confidence

b) willingness to share

c) lack of understanding

7. Impatience

a) loss of silence b) restlessness

c) boldness

8. Lawful

a) allowed by law b) stolen by force

c) not governed by rules

9. Loyalty

a) being uncertain b) being faithful

c) being hopeful

10. Magical

a) charming b) successful c) silent


1-c; 2-b; 3-a; 4-b; 5-a; 6-b; 7-b; 8-a; 9-b; 10-a

Tale Time

A story of compassion

Once upon a time, a woman saw a scorpion drowning in the water. She decided to save it by stretching out her finger for help but the scorpion stung her instead. The mother still tried to get the scorpion out of the water but it stung her back again.

Her son nearby told her to stop trying to save the scorpion that kept stinging her. But the mother said: "It is in the nature of the scorpion to sting as it is in my nature to love. Why should I give up on my nature to love just because the scorpion naturally stings?" The son stood staring at his mother.

The incident made him understand the importance of compassion and patience. His mother had exhibited both while trying to save a scorpion whose wont it is to inflict pain. The boy learnt a lesson to never give up on goodness and love even if others around him never reciprocated his gestures.

Whys & Wherefores

Sir, What is the meaning of “Come on strong”? -V Venugopal Reddy, Lecturer, Yadagiri Gutta

Dear Mr.Venugopal, you deserve appreciation for the good question. “Come on strong” means “to seem aggressive” or “to overwhelm others with very strong language or personality”.

If you say “She has a tendency to come on strong, but she's really a softie” refers to the fact that she appears aggressive but she is soft in reality. Some people behave differently when they introduce themselves to strangers or when they are introduced to someone. In such contexts, they may use some peculiar language, different vocabulary or they may exhibit some abnormal mannerisms. In fact, such people do not realize whether they are right or wrong. Also, they do not know what such behaviour would result in. This expression has been in the use since 900 AD. This idiom is frequently used in America. The sentence, “When you go for an interview, don't come on too strong” indicates the suggestion that one should not behave abnormally while facing an interview.

“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” -Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826; an American Founding Father and the third President of the United States).

- (The writer is an Assistant Professor at Palamuru University and can be reached at:[email protected])

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