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Call the Shots
Call the Shots English, baby! Video Lesson

Learn English with this bossy English lesson

Date: Dec 10 2013

Themes: Family, Romance, Soap Opera

Grammar: Future in the Past

Intro

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2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

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Let’s be honest: It’s hard to keep your mouth shut when you think you know what’s best. When you see someone doing something the wrong way, it’s hard not to jump up and down, telling them what to do differently. If you’re feeling this way, you want to be in charge. It’s called wanting to call the shots.

The beginnings of this expression might come from sports, war, or even making a film, but the meaning is always the same. If you are trying or wanting to call the shots in a situation, you want to make the decisions and tell people what to do. You might be the expert, or you might just be bossy. Either way, you think you’re the right person for the job.

Amanda and Mason are arguing about the baby. Is Amanda calling the shots, or is it Mason? Find out in this English lesson about relationship trouble.

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Dialog

1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.

Amanda

Amanda

Marni

Marni

Jeff

Jeff

Amanda:  I know, Mason.Yes, I already know that. Of course I’m being careful. Would you please stop worrying? OK. You know what? I have to go. I love you. Bye.

Marni:  Hey, Amanda. I couldn’t help but overhear. What was that all about?

Amanda:  Oh, you know. That was just Mason. He’s been on a work trip for two days, and he’s called me seven times.

Jeff:  Why is he calling so much?

Amanda:  I don’t know. I think he’s completely obsessed with the new baby. He’s always on the internet doing research. He reads four or five “mommy blogs” a day. He goes in all these chat rooms with these soon-to-be moms. He’s talking to pregnant women all the time. It’s so weird.

Marni:  Doesn’t he realize that you have a lot of friends with kids? Like me, for example. You also have your mom and your doctor. What do you think his deal is?

Jeff:  Mason told me the other day that he was planning on signing your kid up for preschool.

Amanda:  What? It’s like he’s totally trying to call the shots with our baby. Like I’m not even here.

Jeff:  Hold on, guys. Let’s think about this for a minute. Do you honestly believe that Mason thinks that you don’t know what you’re doing as a parent?

Amanda:  I don’t know. I mean, no. Not really. But he’s acting like he doesn’t.

Jeff:  Look, Mason’s about to be a new dad. OK? He’s probably just excited, and wants the best for you, too. Just tell him he needs to dial it back a little bit.

Marni:  But it also is important to make sure that you do tell him that you appreciate his gestures. I mean, that really is important that you let him know that.

Amanda:  You know what? You guys are absolutely right. Fine. But I swear, if he puts this baby on one more waiting list, I’m going to punch him in the face. Oh! Who could that be? Hello. Oh hi, Mason. It’s good to hear from you, too. I took my prenatal vitamins… drinking my water… yeah, it’s clear. You know what, Mason? I think we need to talk.

Jeff:  You know what? Mason is trying to call the shots. I don’t know what becoming a dad has done to him, but he thinks he’s such an expert now.

Marni:  Maybe you should try to talk some sense into him before Amanda really loses her patience.

Jeff:  You know what? I will. I’m going to write an email right now.

Marni:  Good idea.

 

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Discussion

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Mason’s away on a trip, and he’s checking on Amanda all day long. He’s calling her a lot and giving her advice, which is starting to make her angry. Amanda wonders if Mason thinks she doesn’t know how to be a mom. After all, he’s going to be a new dad, too. Why does he think he’s the expert?

Marni and Jeff appreciate how Amanda is feeling, but they want to help fix things between their friends. They remind her that Mason is probably just excited and nervous, and to try to be understanding of his feelings. Mason calls again, and Jeff shares with Marni that he agrees that Mason is acting bossy.

Is Mason going too far? Should Amanda be upset with him for his behavior? Do you know any soon-to-be parents who are obsessed with babies?

 

Comments

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fortuna87

fortuna87

Russian Federation

Nowadays a pregnant women knows about pregnancy much more than a husband.

11:21 AM Oct 17 2014 |

mahbubeh92

mahbubeh92

Iran, Islamic Republic Of

i call  the shots when i am the one who is the expert on something .absolutely i am into being bossy .

10:01 PM Jul 05 2014 |

1 person likes this

ttsuka

ttsuka

Japan

Like I said before, Amanda should prepare for a diverse. Imagine what Mason will be like once the baby was actually born?  He would soon buy all early education materials, call to all sports classes, collect dozens of college brochures and start talking about a retirement plan for the baby’s sake. Amanda should realize Mason is maniac, living in a la la land.  Amanda must get serious for the baby. Call the lawyer instead of trying to talk sense into him. 

02:44 AM Feb 17 2014 |

bettyliu

Taiwan

In life, if you live with people who always want to call the shots, maybe your husband/wife, maybe your mother-in-law, or someone else, this is not a pleasent thing.   I don’t know why these people do not know how to dial it back, Do they think that other people are child and do not have their own thought? or do they think if they are doing good for you, no matter they way they talk is bossy and he knows everything? 

03:17 PM Dec 15 2013 |

ahmet55

ahmet55

Germany

It can be drawn from a part of conversation that Mason’s treatment is not normal. It seems that he is a bit more excited and worried about being dad than usual. I think both of them need to talk together for tackle this problem. Mason must decline his tensing up and Amanda should make him to feel calm and relief. There is nothing to be upset, i afraid. 


Yes. In my family my brother and his wife will have a new child (boy) a few months later and all of my family members are happy about this wonderful event include in me. Besides, apparently, my brother does not look like to be obsessed in this case without calling the shouts. 

11:08 AM Dec 12 2013 |

1 person likes this

habiba 18

habiba 18

Tunisia

mason seem to be that he’s trying to call the shots but i dont think he mean it , he’s just worrying about his pregnant wife because he is away so he feels that he cant protect her or help her 

06:00 PM Dec 10 2013 |

Ngubo Sixtus

South Africa

i do like this lesson becaause i am getting to know new words.

04:51 PM Dec 10 2013 |

1 person likes this

shmily87

China

I think Mason is just to excited and a little over-react. Amanda just need to tell him honestly that what he did have troubled her a little. After a communication they will be much better.

03:43 PM Dec 10 2013 |

mukh

mukh

Jordan

gesture is a new word for me, i think it should be highlighted in the above dialog :)

03:35 PM Dec 10 2013 |

1 person likes this

ola33

ola33

Japan

I remember one amusing movie by Polish or Chech cinematogrophers. 


Before the baby was born in a family everyone was calling shots about the grandfather. He was like a baby, the centre of the Universe, the family. But when the baby was born, all that attention was moved to a baby and poor fella was totally forgotten. The focus was on sterile invironment around the new-born. Everyone was ‘dancing’ around the cutie, providing him the best conditions of life. And only the poor forgotton grandfather couldn’t call the shots about the whole situation. He just not used to make the decisions, to be in charge of the party since everything has been done for him so far. So when he got up the stairs int9 the baby’s room to see his grandson, the door was unmercifully shut right in front of his nose. The “experts”, mother and daughter, who had undergone a big preparation beforehand just thought the grandfather would bring in some germs into the baby’s room and nobody, alas,  could tell some sense itno them just like before when they were “dancing around” their grandfather.

02:58 PM Dec 10 2013 |

Jasonlongo

Jasonlongo

Congo, Democratic Republic Of The

Mason’s right, cos you know when you’re  a soon-to-be parent it makes someone acting sometimes like a fool, you have to be up-to-date to your wife (for those who take trips).


Mason’s acting bossy, right, it’s a rite of passage, he’s a young parent and don’t really know how to take responsibilities, he’s got to check mommy blogs so he can acquire more knowledge to be a real parent and it’s no wonder to see him acting this way.


Jason Laurel Longo, english baby !!!

12:51 PM Dec 10 2013 |

 julito

julito

Argentina

s&w, thanks for your compliment. hope so…....   :))))

12:32 PM Dec 10 2013 |

S&W

S&W

China

hey julito,You are so kind and nice person.Hope your book can help Mason and Amanda slove their problem as soon as possible.

11:57 AM Dec 10 2013 |

1 person likes this

 julito

julito

Argentina

Excuse me Marni and Jeff, I am chiming in , I have an idea , you can buy from Amazon  a book that it is very useful and    Mason might want to read . The name of the book is ” Dad`s guide to pregnancy for dummies” .  He could find tips for being a supportative partner during pregnancy  and preparing for fatherhood.  Good luck with it. and hurry up before Amanda blows  up.    lol…........ 

11:02 AM Dec 10 2013 |

S&W

S&W

China

I think Mason was overstrain for Amada and the baby,Certainly i know being a new dad is the most special moment for a man,But his emotions has already made Amada feel upset that is not good for the baby.Mason should calm down and ask Amada what she need most.preschool is too early for unborn baby.


well Amada should understand Mason ,His trying to be a perfect dad.His unexperienced made him doesn’t know how to look after a pregnant woman .Calling the shots isn’t an error but not everthing. 

04:58 AM Dec 10 2013 |

Jobee

Jobee

China

Mason’s acting like a chic.Calling the shots turns out to be aggressive.I am afraid it’ll come to a bad result.


Man has to be in charge of things,but to dominate all the stuff in a laid-back way is the right way.man has no reason to have stirs in stomach,just dial it back.


so Mason is not as mature as a father should be,then the family problems come!


03:51 AM Dec 10 2013 |

Eric_

Eric_

China

I understand Mason’s feelings. It’s excited to be a new daddy. Mason is just can’t control himself.!


However,I think Mason don’t need to call Amanda all day long. It will make Amnada feel annoyed. As the fact, Amanda can get the help from their parents or friends..


I don’t really like the feeling called of shots…


I got a good news from my cousin 2 dys ago.She just had a little boy. Before this, her husband was so obsessed with babies. He bought everything they need. And like Mason,called her wife all day long, attended classes at night…. acting like the expert.

03:07 AM Dec 10 2013 |

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