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Feb 25, 2018

A Phrasal Verb a Day #48 - to get on

Notes & Transcript

Listen closely for the definitions and examples. There are loads. This is a very common phrase. Do you know all the meanings? 


Hello there, this is Luke from Luke’s English podcast. As you well know I’m teaching you a phrasal verb every single day of this year and in this month all the phrasal verbs have the word ‘get’ in them, okay? They’re all get-related: ‘get’, ‘get in’, ‘get on’, ‘get off’, ‘get off with’, ‘get in to’, ‘get on to’, ‘get out of’ all that kind of thing, okay? Now, I hope that you’re not sick and tired of hearing my voice every day. I did have that thought earlier on this evening ’Oh my God! Maybe they’re just fed up with listening to me. Maybe they’re just like – Luke, enough with the phrasal verbs already, okay?! We get it now. We get the idea, yeah? Get on, get in, get off, yes, fine! Can you just use latin verbs?’ Well, no, no, sorry, no. I’m committed and I don’t know why but I’m committed to teaching you how to speak and how to understand natural British English and I’m going to, I’m going to do this, okay? I might not make it through the whole year but I’m definitely going to make it through this particular episode, okay? And today’s phrasal verb is ‘to get on’ and you might think ‘Get on – really, Luke? We know that one. That’s easy’. Well, you might, you might already know some of the uses of the phrase ‘get on’, for example you might already know that we use ‘get on’ to talk about entering a bus or plane or train:

– Get on the train, quickly! We’re about to leave!,

for example. You might already know that we use it to express the idea of continuing to do something, right? For example:

– We’ve got so many things to do. Look, can we get on?

In fact, ‘get on with it’. There’s another one.

– Get on with it, will you? We don’t have much time. Hurry up and get on with it,

meaning just ‘start doing it’ or ‘continue doing it’. Maybe a bit faster than you’re doing it now.

– Come on Luke, get on with it. We don’t have an all day.

Alright. Another would be ‘to have a friendly relationship with someone’. Everyone knows that. That’s one of the first phrasal verbs you’ve ever learnt, isn’t it? ‘To get on with’:

– I really get on with my best friend because we have lots of things in common.

‘To get on with’ similar to ‘get along with’ in fact.
Let’s see. You probably already know that it means ‘to be chosen’, ‘to be part of a group or a team’, right? You know, so:

– Apparently, Jeff got on the basketball team. I don’t know how he managed that considering he can’t play basketball but somehow he got on the basketball team. I think it is probably because they’re desperate for players and so, they were just like – Look, we need someone else to join our team, Jeff? – and Jeff was like – Alright. What’s in it for me? – and he said – Well, Jeff, we will give you biscuits. You just need to join the team – Jeff was like – I’m in! I’m in! Sign me up. Where do I sign up? – So, Jeff got on the basketball team really easily.

You know probably that you already… You already know that it means ‘to manage to continue doing something’ or ‘make progress’. For example:

– How did you get on? How did you get on yesterday?

You know, for example, you had your driving test yesterday, you friend might say:

– Oh! How did you get on? How did you get on with the driving test? Did you get on alright?

Okay? Meaning ‘How did you do?’, ‘Was it alright?’, ‘Was it successful?’

It could mean ‘to be successful in life or at work’. For example, you know:

– I’m prepared to do anything in order to get on in life,

meaning ‘to get successful’, alright?

You might already know that it means ‘to appear on TV or radio’, okay?

– I’ll do absolutely anything to get on TV.

Alright? So, ‘to get on TV’ means ‘to go on TV’, ‘to appear on TV’.

You might already know that it means ‘to get old’, ‘to become old’ and it’s always used in the progressive continuous form:

Well, I’m getting on a bit now.

‘I’m getting on’ means ‘I’m getting old’, right?

– Well, I’m, you know, I don’t like to stay (in)… I don’t like to go nightclubbing because, you know, I’m getting on a bit now. I prefer to just stay at home, put my feet up, drink a nice cup of tea and listen to another episode of Luke’s English Podcast.
That’s probably what’s going to happen when we’re all old, you know, because I’m going to keep doing this forever. We’ll, probably all be 70 years… 70 or 80 years old and, well, just be like:

– No, I don’t want to go out to a nightclub, not tonight, no. I’m… I think I’m just going to stay in and drink some tea and listen to the latest four-hour episode of Luke’s English Podcast, thank you. Because I’m getting on a bit now. I don’t like too much excitement, thank you.

You might already know that it means ‘to do something’, you know, ‘to finally do something after you have been intending to do it for a while, particularly in America.

– I’ll get on it as soon as I can,

you know? ‘I’ll get on it as soon as I can’ meaning ‘I’m going to do it as soon as I can’, ‘Get on it!’ meaning ‘Do it!’, okay?

You might already know that it means ‘to remind someone to do something especially when you have to do it more than once’:

– Luke, can you get on Bill to see if he can come with…, come up with those numbers for you? Can you get on?

We would say ‘get on to’

– Can you get on to Bill, please, to just get those numbers from him?


Another one is a phrase… Here’re some phrases, alright? In American English they say ‘get it on’, ‘get it on’ which is an American expression meaning ‘to have sex’. ‘Get it on!’ You know, you hear it in some songs. I’m sure Marvin Gaye sings about that. You know:

‘Let’s get it on’

You know, that one:

‘We are all sensitive people with so much love to give. Let’s get it on. Come on sugar’

Okay. I bet you didn’t expect to hear soul music sung badly by a British man in this one, did you?

Another one is:

– They get on like a house on fire

‘They get on like a house on fire’ that means that they get on really well. They have a really good relationship.

– You and Sarah are getting on like a house on fire,

for example, meaning ‘you and Sarah seem to be getting on really well’.

Yes. There you go ladies and gentlemen. Let’s keep it brief. That’s the end of this. Bye for now. Speak to you again soon. Alright? Goodbye then. Bye. Okay. Good. See you soon then. Alright, speak to you later. Alright? Okay. Bye then. Bye. OK, I’m going to put the phone down. Okay, bye then. Bye. Yep. Bye. Yep. Love you too. Okay. Bye now, Bye.