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In the Garage

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 Garages are small buildings used to park or store automobiles.  A garage can be a separate building or it can be attached to a house.  Usually the garage is on one side of the house, but sometimes it is behind the house.  Garages are used for many things in addition to storing automobiles.  Some men have  a work bench and tools in their garages where they go to repair broken items from the home, fix toys, build bird houses or avoid their wives.  Other people store seasonal items in their garages: lawnmowers, rakes, sleds, wagons, bicycles, barbecue grills and so on.  Some people store so many other things in their garage that there is no room for their car. 

This is a special can used for storing gasoline. Work gloves are often kept in the garage. This is a hacksaw and is used for cutting metal. You can often find a hammer, nails and a tape measure in a garage. People use a step ladder to reach high places for painting, changing light bulbs, etc.

Some garages are small, just large enough for one car with enough room on either side for the car doors to open.  Other garages have enough room for two or three cars in them.  Sometimes a garage will have a room or small apartment above the parking area.  This extra living space can be used as an office, a workshop, a guest room or a bedroom for one of the children in the family.  Older garages often had wide doors that swung open to the side or slid sideways on tracks to allow cars to get in or out.  Most newer garages have overhead doors that lift up and slide back along metal guide rails.  These overhead doors can be operated by muscle power or by electric motors.  Many electric doors are raised or lowered by pushing a button on a little gadget that looks like a television remote control.  These gadgets are called "garage door openers," of course.

Lawnmowers are often stored in the garage when they are not being used. This is a paint roller, used for spreading paint on flat surfaces. Sam is sweeping the garage with a push broom. Sally is painting the floor and herself. A wood saw is used for cutting boards.

The little road that leads from the street to the garage is called a driveway.  A driveway can be paved with concrete or macadam ("blacktop"), covered with gravel, or may just be a path worn through the grass.  Finally, a "garage sale" is not an occasion for buying a garage at a low price.  This is another term for a "yard sale" or a "porch sale," but which takes place in a garage, instead.   A family tries to sell all of the old furniture, appliances, unwanted gifts, out-grown clothing and odds and ends that had been accumulating for years to some other family that doesn't have enough old stuff yet.  This can also be called "redistribution of wealth" at the neighborhood level.

Many mothers make their sons keep their skateboards in the garage. Snow shovels and garden spades are often stored in the garage. A staple gun uses spring power to drive staples into wood. An open-end wrench is a useful tool for mechanics. Thumbtacks are used to hold light items to wood or to bulletin boards.

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Expressions used in a garage:

  • "Remember, Junior, wait until the door is all the way open before you back the car out."
  • "Open the garage door part way when you let the car warm up." 
  • "The exhaust fumes will kill you if you don't have enough ventilation."
  • "Be careful that you don't bang the car door when you open it."
  • "Move Teddy's wagon out of the way so I can get the car in the garage."
  • "Don't spray paint your bicycle while the car is in the garage, Tom."
  • "Do you think there's room in the garage to store this roll of carpeting?"
  • "Hey Jane, do you remember where in the garage we put that box of Christmas lights?"
  • "Remember, Jim, every tool goes back in its proper place when you're finished with it."
  • "How can I tell where the proper place is, Dad?"
  • "The outline of each tool is painted right on the pegboard."
  • "Bobby!  Chisels are not for digging in the dirt!"
  • "May I drive to the mall?"
  • "Park the car in the garage when you are finished washing it."
  • "Allison, put your bicycle in the garage before you come in for dinner."
  • "Son, will you hand me that socket wrench?"
  • "Don't forget to clean the grass out of the lawnmower before you put it in the garage."
  • "Lock the garage doors after you put the car in."
  • "Get me a can of motor oil from the shelf under the work bench."
  • "The car is dripping black greasy stuff on the garage floor."
  • "The rock salt for the driveway is in a big bag near the garage door."
  • "Don't stand in the doorway when the garage door is coming down."
  • "Fred, you're going to have to clear some of that junk out of the garage so I have room to put my car inside, too."
  • "Don't track that grease from the garage floor into the house, kids."
  • "One of these days, somebody is going to run over your bicycle if you continue laying it in the driveway."
  • "Crunch!"  "Dad! You ran over my bike!"
  • "Help me stack those boxes in the corner so we have more room in here." 

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Exercise A, Verbs used in the garage: Write a meaning that has something to do with a garage for each verb and use each verb in a sentence.

Verb Meaning Sentence
open, opens, opened, opening, opened    
kill, kills, killed, killing, killed    
bang, bangs, banged, banging, banged    
store, stores, stored, storing, stored    
dig, digs, dug, digging, dug    
paint, paints, painted, painting, painted    
hand. hands, handed, handing, handed    
drip, drips, dripped, dripping, dripped    
track, tracks, tracked, tracking, tracked    
run, runs, ran. running, run    
park, parks, parked, parking, parked    
clear, clears, cleared, clearing, cleared    
open, opens, opened, opening, opened    
stack, stacks, stacked, stacking, stacked    

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Exercise B, Nouns used in a garage:  Write a meaning related to a garage after each noun in the list below.

Noun Meaning Noun Meaning
garage   grease  
garage-door opener   wrench  
driveway   tools  
overhead door   pegboard  
rock salt   macadam  
wheelbarrow   exhaust  
motor oil   junk  
work bench   chisel  
vise   spade  
socket wrench   staple gun  
saw   jack  
car   automobile  
tires   patch kit  
spark plugs   parts  

v

Exercise C: Fill the blanks in the following sentences with nouns from the list above.  You might be able to use more than one noun in some of the blanks.

1. Father put the family _________ in the _______________ each night to protect it.

2. My grandfather had many wood-working _______________ on his ________________ .

3. John pulled up the ________________ so his brother could back the _______________ onto the __________________.

4. Anthony found  the right-sized ______________ on the ______________in the garage to fix the bicycle.

5. The ______________ from a running ______________ can be dangerous.

6. When the ______________ is icy, you should sprinkle ______________ on it.

7. Many people keep the _____________, the hoe, the ______________ and the rake for working in the garden in the _______________ during the winter.

8. "Be careful you don't spill the _______________ when you put it in the car."

9. There is a black _____________ spot where the car sits in the _______________.

10. We keep extra _____________, _______________ and other ____________ for the car in the garage.

Answers:

1. car (automobile), garage

2. tools, work bench

3. garage door, car, garage

4. wrench, pegboard (work bench)

5. exhaust, automobile (engine)

6. driveway, rock salt (sand)

7. wheelbarrow, spade (shovel), garage

8. motor oil

9. grease, garage

10. spark plugs, tires, parts

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