34 DETERMINATION – podcast episode 34 – transcript

This brand new episode is about DETERMINATION and it was inspired by the London Olympics. Learn new expressions, such as: “to go for the gold”, “to fall flat on your face”, “no walk in the park”, “to pave the road to success” and many more.

Here’s the transcript.  


Listen to the episode on iTunes or here:



MARTA: Today, we’re talking about DETERMINATION !

M- Cindy, how are you today?


M- Fearless? The heart of a champion?

C- I am a determined, unstoppable force of human nature.

M- Unstoppable? WHAT’S GOTTEN INTO YOU? Why are you acting like that? ….Oh, you’ve been watching the London Olympics.

C- That’s right, I have, and I am inspired! I am self-assured and I am fearless! I am Iron Woman!

M-Cindy, you’re never going to become an Olympic athlete unless they add shopping to the list of sports.

C- NEVER SAY NEVER! Don’t be so negative. Ugh! You’re such a BUZZKILL!

M- Not gonna happen! Not in your lifetime!

C- Whatever! Y’know Marta, I am so charged up after watching all of those incredible athletes. They’re THE CREAM OF THE CROP, the best from all over the globe.

M- The cream of the crop. The Olympics make me think of our listeners, all over the world.

C- We know that every single person listening to this podcast right now has the heart of a champion. You are determined, exceptional people and I will tell you why- because you have learned a second language.

M- And that’s ‘’NO WALK IN THE PARK’’. That means it’s not an easy thing to do. It’s no walk in the park.

C- Learning a second language requires focus, dedication and a passion to do better and want better in your life. This is what makes you a champion.

M- That’s right.

C- I know that many of our friends out there speak a third or even a fourth language! We celebrate you, you are Language Superstars!

M- We know that the road has probably been ROUGH for you at times.

C- Having a ‘’ROUGH ROAD’’ or a ‘’few BUMPS ALONG THE WAY’’ means to encounter difficulties.

M- ‘’Bumps’’ or difficulties are just a part of life.


M- A silver spoon?

C- To be “born with a silver spoon in your mouth” that means to be born into a privileged life. Life is not always kind, or easy. Sometimes we strive to reach our goals but we fall flat on our faces.

M- Fall on our faces? Could you explain that for everyone?

C- Sure, TO ‘’FALL FLAT ON YOUR FACE’’ means to fail miserably or in an embarrassing way. I’ll give you an example: Two years ago, my friend opened a new restaurant. He had no experience in business. He was irresponsible and careless with money. The food was terrible and he received many bad reviews. One year later, he fell flat on his face and the restaurant closed its doors– that means the business closed forever.

M- Oh, I see….to ‘’fall flat on your face’’ means to fail in a big way. Got it.

C- And by the way- that was a fictitious scenario I used as an example. I don’t know anyone with a failed restaurant!

M- That’s good!

C- So, anyways…back to life. Sometimes we fail. That’s normal, but the important thing is to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get back in that saddle. (line from the song : “Waka Waka” by Shakira) To ‘’GET BACK IN THE SADDLE’’ means to restart, to continue again, to resume something that you had stopped doing. Don’t give up on your dreams, because you know what?

M- What?

C- We learn from our mistakes, that’s how we improve. In regards to learning a new language I have uttered a lot of stupid, senseless things in Italian and I still make many mistakes on a daily basis. Who knows how many people went home laughing about the silly American woman who speaks Italian like a monkey!

M- Well, DON’T GIVE UP THE DREAM…at least your pronunciation is good!

C- Thank you for that vote of confidence! My point is this: when you make a mistake LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE that means to look at something in a positive way. Mistakes are your first steps towards improvement. All those mishaps, disappointments and bumps along the way will help to pave the road to success in your future. “PAVING THE ROAD TO SUCCESS’’ means to prepare the road to success. For example: Hard work and focused determination have helped to pave the road to success for many Olympic athletes.

M- Instead, bumps along the road can even push you harder towards your goal. For example when I was 14 years old my parents refused to pay for my singing lessons and that made me even more determined about taking singing lessons. So I worked as a baby-sitter in my free time from school until I made enough money to pay for those lessons myself.

C- That’s a great story! So, you were not born with a silver spoon in your mouth?

M – No, not really. It was no walk in the park.

C- Y’know every time the Olympics come around I can’t help but think of that inspirational song by Queen. One of the greatest, most epic rock anthems of all time! You know the one, Marta… Inspire us my dear!

M – We are the champions my friend and we’ll keep on fighting ’till the end…

C- Oh, I feel like I CAN MOVE MOUNTAINS now! I’m determined to have a great day! Thank you, Marta and thank you to Queen!

M- We hope everyone is inspired today to follow your dream and ‘’GO FOR THE GOLD’’!

C- To ‘’go for the gold’’ means to aspire to the highest level of achievement – it means to aim for the gold medal!


C – Thanks for listening everyone, have a great day!

M- And don’t forget to come visit us on www.myAmericanfriendblog.com

C- And stop by our Facebook page and say hello! You can also find us on Youtube, iTunes, Twitter and Podomatic. We are now available for private lessons via Skype. Just send us an email at: myAmericanfriendpodcast@gmail.com and we’ll respond with all the details.

M & C – Thank you, bye bye!




WHAT’S GOTTEN INTO YOU?a way to say ‘’what’s wrong with you?’’ or ‘’why are you behaving this way?’’ EXAMPLE: You’re being very rude today. That’s unusual. What’s gotten into you? Are you in a bad mood?

NEVER SAY NEVER!-means don’t say something is impossible. Think positive. EXAMPLE: ‘’That mountain is too high! We will never be able to reach the top!’’ ANSWER: ‘’Never say never! We can do it! We will begin early and I’m sure we will reach the top by nightfall.

BUZZKILL: Something that ruins the mood of the party. EXAMPLE: We were having a lot of fun at the party. Everyone was dancing and laughing and having a great time, then my neighbor came over and asked us to turn off the music! She always complains, she’s such a buzzkill!

NOT IN YOUR LIFETIME!- means ‘’it’s not going to happen while you are still alive’’ EXAMPLE: Will you go out on a date with me? ANSWER: Not in your lifetime! I will never go out with you!

THE CREAM OF THE CROP- the best of the best. EXAMPLE: Jennifer is the best athlete we have. All of our athletes are talented, but Jennifer is really exceptional. She is determined, hard-working and focused. She is the cream of the crop.

IT’S NO WALK IN THE PARK- It’s not easy. EXAMPLE: We made it to the top of the mountain by nightfall, but it was no walk in the park. It was quite exhausting and required lots of preparation and training to be physically able to do it in one day.

TO ENCOUNTER A ROUGH ROAD– to face difficulties, obstacles. EXAMPLE: I’ve earned my degree and I now have a great job, but it was a rough road to success. I faced a lot of difficulties when I was a young student, but I have been rewarded by my hard work and dedication.

TO ENCOUNTER A FEW BUMPS ALONG THE WAYto face difficulties, obstacles. EXAMPLE: My grandparents have been married for 50 years! Their marriage has encountered a few bumps along the way, but they love each other very much and are totally dedicated to spending the rest of their lives together.

BORN WITH A SILVER SPOON IN YOUR MOUTH- to be born into a privileged life. EXAMPLE: My friend was born with a silver spoon in her mouth. Her parents are very rich and they have always bought everything for her. She has never had to work a day in her life.

TO FALL FLAT ON YOUR FACEto fail in amajor way, or embarrassing way. EXAMPLE: My brother is an excellent football player. He was sure that his team would win the local championship. In the weeks leading up to the championship he did a lot of bragging, talking about how they would crush their opponents on the field. When the big day arrived, they fell flat on their faces! The opposing team beat them by 25 points! It was humiliating!

CLOSED ITS DOORSto close a business forever. EXAMPLE: After 40 years in business, my local supermarket has closed its doors. The owners are retiring and moving to Florida to enjoy the sunshine.

GET BACK IN SADDLEto resume an activity you were doing before. EXAMPLE: My brother broke up with his girlfriend 2 weeks ago and he’s already back in the saddle! He has a date with a new girl tonight!

LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE-to look at a situation in a positive way. EXAMPLE: My supervisor has reduced my hours at work. I can only work 40 hours per week with no overtime. ANSWER: Well, look on the bright side: now you have more time to spend with your children. They will be very happy to have you at home more often!

PAVING THE ROAD TO SUCCESS-to prepare the road to success. EXAMPLE: A good education, hard work and dedication will pave the road to my success!

TO FEEL LIKE YOU CAN MOVE MOUNTAINS- to feel very inspired, positive, motivated, strong. EXAMPLE: My husband supports and encourages me in everything that I do. He motivates me to be the best person I can be. After talking with him, I feel like I can move mountains!

GO FOR THE GOLD- to strive for the highest level of achievement, or the gold medal. EXAMPLE: What are your future plans for your new business? ANSWER: We’re going for the gold. Our plan is to expand the company nationwide within the next 5 years. One day soon, our products will be in every household in the country!


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