When we ride a vehicle, we control it as it moves, or we sit inside it as a passenger. You can go horse riding (UK) or horseback riding (N. Am.), ride a bike or ride a motorbike, but you can also ride the bus or ride the subway.
If you give someone a ride (N. Am.) or a lift (UK), you take them with you in your car. They might ride shotgun (N. Am. ifml.) if they sit in the front passenger seat. Don’t confuse this with taking someone for a ride (ifml.), which means to “cheat or trick them”.
At the fairground, a ride is also a large machine people ride on for fun, like a rollercoaster ride.
Someone who survives a crisis or hard times is said to ride
out the storm or ride it out.
Someone who is very popular and successful is said to be riding high. Don’t confuse this with riding up, which means that an item of clothing is moving upwards out of its proper position: “My new skirt rides up when I walk!”
When we drive a vehicle, we sit inside it and operate it: “Most adults can probably drive a car.” You shouldn’t operate a vehicle if you have drunk alcohol: “Don’t drink and drive!”
If someone drives a vehicle as their job, we call them a driver, such as a lorry (N. Am.: truck) driver,a bus driver or a taxi driver.
You can also use the word “drive” to describe different kinds of vehicles, such as four-wheel drives or right-hand drives.
You might have a driveway, or drive, outside your house. This is the private parking space or short road leading from the street to your house.
You might also have a drive in your computer, which is the part that stores information. A disk drive is the part of a computer that passes data between a disk and the computer’s memory.
If you like sports, you might drive a golf ball or drive a
tennis ball by hitting it very hard and far.
People who work hard because of a strong desire to succeed are said to have a lot of drive. You can also say that they are driven by ambition. If someone or something annoys you, you can say it drives
you crazy or it drives you up the wall (ifml.): “We love our three-year-old, but sometimes, she drives us crazy!”
If you ask someone What are you driving at?, you’d like to know what they really mean.