Learn English with English, baby!

Join for FREE!

Hard to Come By
Hard to Come By English, baby! Video Lesson

Learn English with this roommates English lesson

Date: Dec 24 2013

Themes: Romance, Soap Opera

Grammar: Zero Conditional


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

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

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

When you were a kid, you probably spent time looking for things you thought were valuable. Perhaps you looked for money on the ground, searched for shells at the beach, or went digging for diamonds in the earth. Even though they were difficult to find, you tried your hardest. You knew that if something is hard to come by, you should spend your time looking for it.

An item or a person that is hard to come by is difficult to find because it’s rare or he or she has very specific qualifications. Some people spend all of their free time searching for a particular thing because they find the search enjoyable. Or an employer might spend extra time trying to hire an employee who has particular skills. It all depends on how much time is available and how much patience a person has to spare.

Are you willing to wait for things that are hard to come by? Find out what Lily thinks is important enough to search for in this English lesson about roommates.

3. Watch - Watch the video without reading the dialog.


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

Log in to Listen

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





Lily:  So, here’s my dilemma. I’ve got this great new apartment and it’s awesome, but it’s also awesomely expensive. I need to get a roommate.

Marni:  Well, that’s not a problem. There are tons of people looking for a place to live right now.

Lily:  I know, but I don’t want to live with just anyone. I have very specific qualifications! And I think it might actually be really hard to find the right person. A good roommate is hard to come by.

Marni:  It can be a challenge, for sure, but if you place an ad describing what you’re looking for, that will weed out people who aren’t a good fit for you.

Lily:  OK. I guess.

Marni:  OK. You talk, I type. All right. What kind of roommate are you looking for?

Lily:  OK. Either a guy or a girl is OK.

Marni:  OK.

Lily:  Actually, I think I’d rather live with a guy. Guys seem like they’re easier to live with. Right?

Marni:  Really? OK.

Lily:  They should be relatively clean and also not coming in super late at night every night.

Marni:  OK. Got it.

Lily:  Also, it would be really awesome to have a roommate who is a really good cook and liked to hang out and have a glass of wine after I got off of work. Oh! And it would be awesome if we could get a dog together!

Marni:  A pet dog?

Lily:  Yeah, I love dogs! We could take care of it together.

Marni:  OK. Anything else?

Lily:  It would be cool if we liked the same authors so that then we could share books. And somebody who would go to yoga class with me. I think that’s it.

Marni:  Uh, yoga. All right. OK. So this is what I have so far: “Looking for a male roommate to share my new apartment. Must clean up after himself and work normal hours. Should enjoy cooking and sharing the occasional glass of wine together. Roommate who likes the same music as me preferable, and the same authors as I do. Seeking someone who will go to yoga class and is interested in getting a dog together. Email me at lily@americandreamd8.com.”

Lily:  That’s perfect! That just says everything.

Marni:  Lily, are you sure you’re not looking for a new boyfriend?

Lily:  Uh, I don’t know what you mean.

Marni:  I mean your ad sounds like an online dating profile. A roommate like this is going to be really hard to come by.

Lily:  I really don’t know what you mean.

Marni:  OK, listen. “Should enjoy cooking and sharing the occasional glass of wine together. Seeking someone who’s interested in getting a dog together.” Come on, Lily. If you post this, you’re going to be getting responses from guys looking for dates.

Lily:  Look, I don’t know what you’re talking about. I need a roommate! I am not looking for another boyfriend.

Marni:  Fine. You’re not looking for a boyfriend. But we need to write this ad again.

Lily:  What? OK, fine.

Marni:  OK. Let’s start with the basics. How much is the rent?


Grammar Point

Go Super to learn "Zero Conditional" from this lesson Go Super!


Go Super to take Quiz Go Super!


Lesson MP3

Go Super to download full lesson MP3 Go Super!

The iTEP® test

  • Schedule an iTEP® test and take the official English Practice Test.

    Take Now >


Go Super to Listen Go Super!

Lily needs a roommate, and she has very particular qualifications. She prefers that a guy move in to her apartment, for example. She wants him to be clean and someone who doesn’t stay out late. She wants him to cook with her, drink an occasional glass of wine with her, go to yoga together, and maybe get a dog together. Lily has a lot of specific things in mind when she thinks about the person she wants to live with.

Marni is writing Lily’s ad on the internet that will help her to find a new roommate. As she listens and writes, Marni starts to think that Lily is describing the boyfriend she wants to meet and not the roommate she wants to move in with her. Marni points this out to her, but Lily acts like Marni’s a little crazy. She’s not looking for a boyfriend, just a roommate!

Do you think that Lily only wants a roommate, or could she be looking for a boyfriend, too? From your experience, is the right roommate hard to come by?



Log in to Comment



Papa cooking is one of the most amazing and useful for those who are aggressive to know about the cooking tips and also how to cook them actually at this time all like to be a good chef http://papacookinggames.com/ after got it give me your best feedback.

09:48 AM Feb 09 2018 |


United States


It is an official holiday in Fiji, Guyana, India,Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and recently Sindh Province in Pakistan. One of the most popular festivals of Hinduism, it spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair

08:15 AM Oct 16 2017 |



This lesson is very necessary and induced for the right and exact setings. The abilities are utilized for the wonderful and vital realm. The essaycenter custom essay are wrote and incorporated for the bright and intricate settings. The future of the individuals and students are ensured and oriental.

07:47 AM Jan 27 2016 |




I’m totally agreed with Marni. It can be seen that Lily anticipates for getting a favorable bf with special features instead of a reasonable roommate. bTW, looking after of a pet dog seems a little bit weird request. 

In my view it’s hard to come by one desirable roommate and also it’s very hard to get along really well with him/her. Moreover, if we expect a favorite flatmate we need to decline our expectation and make change in ourselves, too. 

08:17 AM Dec 31 2013 |




It’s easy to come by something if you try your best.

05:30 AM Dec 25 2013 |



Congo, Democratic Republic Of The

I think there’s no friendship between boys and girls, so if Lily’s thinking about getting a boy roomate, it’s hard to come by !

But if she buys into what Marni suggests, that’ll work !

08:05 PM Dec 24 2013 |



its hard to come by happiness..

its harder to come by love..

its the hardest to come by happiness with love…

04:05 PM Dec 24 2013 |




I like Marni`s face  when  hearing and typing  the required qualifications that Lily is  expecting from a would-be roommate . Right from the start it was obvious  that  Lily`s subconscious  was playing a trick on her. i am wondering if one of the conditions  is: only male applicants who are  non-smokers  and financially secure apply, if not, don´t bother to  write back , as it hasn´t been specified  in the ad.  :))))

01:49 PM Dec 24 2013 |




Everyone want to find a nice person as roommate,Always hope that person is all-powerful ,comfortable,able to understand each other.It’s hard to find this perfect one.But the deep reason to find a roomate always caused by expensave rental.Reduce the requirements,The one can keep privacy is a real matter.

12:42 PM Dec 24 2013 |




Picking your new roomate can be hard to come by, coz as everybody’s know each of us have specific needs, and if you start to live with an opposite person than you are it going to be a dilema, coz u want smb who will think exactly like you about e.g cleaning, not leave items around the flat, and be tidy person ,and smb who will not get on your nerves fast. It’s easy to understand that Lily search more like soulmate than a roomate  in the dialog:)

11:34 AM Dec 24 2013 |

2 people like this


Iran, Islamic Republic Of

I’m a student of MA in Islamic Azad Univercity & I have two really good roommate in its dormitory

they are real believers to ISLAM and I learned so many things of them

11:02 AM Dec 24 2013 |




“Some people spend all of their free time searching for a particular thing because they find the search enjoyable” this is really true, and if your search came up with the results you want then your happiness will be more.

07:13 AM Dec 24 2013 |

Likes (21):

See all >

Share this lesson:

  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on Bebo
  • Share on Myspace
  • Share on Twitter
  • Email this to a friend
  • Share on Sina

Post Ebaby! lessons on your blog:

Ebaby! Cast