53 WORK – podcast episode 53 – transcript

This time our episode is about WORK.

“the GRAVEYARD SHIFT” , “to BE SACKED” , “MATERNITY LEAVE”… learn a lot of expressions about work by listening to this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic :

http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2015-01-11T02_52_08-08_00

Here’s the transcript.

All the best,   Marta

**************

MARTA : This episode is about WORK !

CINDY : …really? Why don’t we talk about high-heeled shoes? or food? or music? Let’s have some fun! Are we really going to talk about work??

M: well, I know some people who are currently looking for a job abroad, they might need our help!   Let me say “Hi” to Letizia, Laura and Elda!

C : Ciao Letizia! Ciao Laura! Ciao Elda! Good luck ladies!   All right, let’s talk about work. Why don’t we start with a job interview, then?

M : a JOB INTERVIEW.   Ok, let’s imagine that I’ve applied for a job in a company that you own.

C:  OK, so, you’re looking for a job, you are the APPLICANT.

M:  Yes, I’m the applicant. I applied for the job because I’m UNEMPLOYED, I’m OUT OF WORK now.

C:  and I run a small business, I’m the EMPLOYER, I’m looking for someone to EMPLOY, to HIRE.   I called you for a job interview because I received your RESUME or I could also say your CV.

M : yes, CV, from the Latin “Curriculum Vitae”.

C : All right, are you ready Marta?

M : Yes, I’m a little nervous 🙂

 

C :   (Sound of a door opening) Ms. Innocenti?

M :  Yes, that’s me. Good morning!

C :    Good morning, I’m The Boss Lady, the owner of this company. It’s nice to meet you.

M : Nice to meet you too.

C :  Please come this way (footsteps). Have a seat please.

M : Thank you.

C :  According to your resume, you’ve worked in the Sales Department of a large company for quite a long time.

M :  Yes, I have many years of experience.

C : Good. Our company’s goal is to expand our sales in the European and American markets, the new employee will have to help our Sales Manager take care of our customers in Europe and in the US. The position requires you to travel once a month. Would that be an issue for you?

M : No, of course not. So, is this a full-time job?

C :   Absolutely. You will be required to work OVERTIME as well, for example, when we take part in international exhibitions.

M : I realize exhibitions are a very important part of this job. That’s when you get to meet many potential customers. It’s worth working overtime.

C : Good. I can see that you speak English quite fluently, can you speak any other languages?

M : I’ve studied Spanish, French and some German too.

C : Excellent. I’ll get in contact with you again next week and we’ll set up a second interview. If you’re chosen for this job, you’ll be paid the going rate plus benefits.

M : May I ask which BENEFITS you provide?

C :   You will be granted full health insurance and a pension plan.

M :   That’s good.

C :  I’ll get in contact with you next week. Thank you for coming, Ms Innocenti.

M :   Thank you very much. I look forward to hearing from you.

C :   Have a nice day!

 

C :   well, Marta, I might have decided to hire you…too bad you’re so busy doing music right now!

M :   yeah, I’m sorry, I don’t think I can take care of your customers now, I’m working on my new record and planning my next trip to Nashville, Tennessee!

C :   I know, it’s a pity you’re busy, I will have to find another person to hire, to PROMOTE, to give a BONUS to, to shower in money…

M : hey, hang on a sec… you’re talking about giving a PROMOTION, giving a BONUS? Well…maybe I could consider working for you in the end…

C :   J even if you have to work overtime? Work DOUBLE SHIFTS? Work the GRAVEYARD SHIFT?

M : the graveyard shift??!

C : yes, that’s an informal way to say the “night shift”

M : graveyard shift… mmm… no, sorry, I’m going back to writing songs and playing concerts in Nashville, I’m afraid.   🙂

C : I haven’t even hired you yet and you’re already complaining because you want some TIME OFF ? you’re not a WORKAHOLIC, are you?

M : ugh! Com’on, you haven’t even hired me yet and you’re already asking me to work double shifts! You’re a demanding boss!

C : so, what else? Do you expect me to grant you MATERNITY LEAVE because you’re about to give birth to a new album?

M : a maternity leave not for a child but for a record, that’s a good idea!   🙂

C : I was kidding, Marta. No maternity leave.

M : I’ll have to RESIGN then. Ok, here’s my TWO WEEK NOTICE.

C : no way, I’m not letting you HAND IN YOUR NOTICE. I’m FIRING you.

M : this is great, I was SACKED by someone who didn’t even hire me.   🙂

C : that might be a good subject for one of your new songs!

 

M : Yeah! Well, everybody thank you for listening to this episode!   Hey, don’t forget to visit our website at www.myamericanfriendblog.com where you can read the transcript and the work-related expressions we’ve used, like:

C : to APPLY for a job, to HIRE, to FIRE, RESUME, to be OUT OF WORK, BENEFITS, BONUS, PROMOTION, to work OVERTIME, the GOING RATE, to work DOUBLE SHIFTS, the GRAVEYARD SHIFT, WORKAHOLIC, MATERNITY LEAVE, to RESIGN, to HAND IN ONE’S NOTICE, to be SACKED, etc.
Thank you again for your support. Keep listening to our podcast on iTunes or on Podomatic.

M : Also stop by our Facebook page and say “hi”! Follow us on Twitter and browse our videos on Youtube. Thank you! Bye!

**************************************************************


VOCABULARY about WORK:

1.) To “apply for a job”- to ask, to interview for, to sign up for employment

EXAMPLE: I would like to apply for the job of salesperson. I have 10 years sales experience.

2.) To hire- to employ, give a job to.

EXAMPLE: My supervisor hired 3 new employees for our sales department last week. This will help ease the workload for rest of the department.

3.) to fire- to terminate employment.

EXAMPLE: My sister was fired from her job for making too many personal phonecalls during company time. Now she’s looking for a new job.

4.) Resume or CV- a printed list of your education & work experience given to potential employers.

EXAMPLE: My mother has a very impressive & long resume (cv). She has many years of managerial experience, there are many firms that would be happy to hire her.

5.) to be out of work- unemployed

EXAMPLE: My brother has been out of work for 6 months. It’s been difficult for him to find a new job in our town. Many firms have closed and moved overseas.

6.) Work benefits- non-wage compensation provided to employees in addition to their normal wages or salaries for example: health insurance, paid vacation, life insurance, pensions..etc..

7.) Bonus- extra money, in addition to normal salary, usually given at the end of the year.

EXAMPLE: Every year, each employee in my department is given a $200 Christmas bonus.

8.) Promotion- a higher position, usually involving more money and more responsibility.

EXAMPLE: My father was given a job promotion last week. I’m happy for him. He is now supervisor of his entire department and he will receive a $5000 pay raise and 2 weeks paid vacation every year.

9.) to work “overtime”- to work extra hours

EXAMPLE: The entire department has been working overtime for the last month. We’re working hard to finish several projects before the end of this month.

10.) the “going rate”- the average wage paid to employees for a job.

EXAMPLE: The going rate for a housekeeper is 10 dollars per hour.

11.) to work double-shifts: to work two shifts in one day, to work double the hours you would normally work.

My husband and I have been working double shifts all year. We’re exhausted, but we’re trying very hard to save money because we want to buy a house next year.

12.) to work the graveyard shift- to work the night shift.

I enjoy working the graveyard shift at my job. It’s quiet and the company pays me an extra 5 dollars per hour in addition to my normal wage.

13.) a workaholic- someone who works a lot and rarely takes a vacation.

EXAMPLE: My husband is a workaholic. He works 7 days a week & never takes a day off to rest.

14.) Maternity leave- time off (usually paid) from work to give birth to a baby.

EXAMPLE: Unfortunately, my sister’s job does not offer paid maternity leave. This means she will not receive a paycheck during the time she is at home with her new baby. She & her husband will use money from their savings to help pay the bills while she’s at home.

15.) to resign from your job- to quit your job

16.) to “hand in one’s notice”: to give written confirmation of your resignation.

EXAMPLE: I’ve been offered a new job overseas, so I’ve decided to hand in my notice and begin an exciting new life in another country.

17.)  to be “sacked” from your job- to be fired from your job. Termination of employment.

EXAMPLE: Our department manager sacked 15 employees for stealing money from the company.

52 to CATCH – podcast episode 52 – transcript

This time our episode is about the verb TO CATCH!
We haven’t recorded a new episode in a while, we have a lot to CATCH UP ON!

Listen to this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic :
http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2014-12-09T06_08_14-08_00

Here’s the transcript.
All the best,   
Marta

**************

Marta: Today we’re talking about to catch.

Marta: Cindy, hurry up! Get in here! We haven’t recorded in a long time and we’ve got a lot to catch up on!

Cindy: True. It’s been a while. We have a lot to catch up on. That means we have a lot to talk about, to become up-to-date on current events.

Marta: or for example: to catch up on work projects…

Cindy: …and to catch up on gossip! (laughs)

Marta: Exactly! (laughs)

Cindy: BUT there will be no catching up without a cup of coffee first!

Marta: Good idea.

Cindy: I’ll get the coffee and I’ll be right back…(footsteps)

Marta: (humming a song)

Cindy: Here’s your coffee. Hey, what’s that song you’re humming? Is that from your new album? I love it! It’s really catchy!

Marta: Yeah, it’s called “Back in the Saddle” and yes, it will be on the new album. What do you mean by ’really catchy’’?

Cindy: That means it’s instantly likeable! It makes me want to sing along with you! It’s a catchy tune.

Marta: Well, thank you. I’m very excited about this album. Just please don’t start singing Cindy, because you’ll break the microphone & we still have an entire podcast to record!

Cindy: It’s absolutely true. So, let’s catch up. What’s new in your life?

Marta: Well, I’ve been to “Music City” USA… Nashville, Tennessee baby!!

Cindy: That must have been amazing! Did you catch some great performances? That means ‘’did you see some great performances?’’

Marta: Actually, we didn’t catch anyone because we were so busy PLAYING (music)!

Cindy: I’m glad you had the chance to play Nashville. You deserve it. I bet you can’t wait to catch the next plane back to Tennessee?

Marta: And I’m happy to say that this April I will be on the next plane back to Tennessee!

Cindy: That’s wonderful! Oh, and that reminds me I want to catch the 5 o’clock train back to Bologna tonight.

Marta: Are you going to catch up with your husband after work?

Cindy: First, I want to do a little Christmas shopping. I’ll catch up with my husband for dinner later on.

Marta: It’s very cold & rainy tonight. Dress warmly or you’ll catch a terrible cold!

Cindy: Oh I know! I caught a cold last week. It was awful!

Marta: Uh Cindy, take your microphone and go stand over there. I don’t want to catch your germs.

(sound of disinfectant spraying)

Cindy: Wait! What are you doing? I’m not sick anymore! Stop spraying me with disinfectant!

Marta: Keep your germs on that side of the room!

Cindy: Don’t worry, it’s not catchy. My cold is long gone and I’m no longer contagious. You’re safe! (laughs)

Marta: Ok, but one single cough and you can catch the early train back to Bologna! (sprays disinfectant)

Cindy: Stop it! Oh, look outside! The weather is getting worse! (sound of rain) I may have to catch the early train if I want to get some shopping done tonight. (thunder & lightning)

Marta: Why do you need to go shopping tonight? (thunder) Go tomorrow, maybe it will be sunny?

Cindy: No, I REALLY need to catch that 5 o’clock tonight.

Marta: Are you buying more shoes?

Cindy: (silence)

Marta: I knew it.

Cindy: Ok, Ok, listen to me! Huge clearance sale. Leather boots. Name brands. Everything in the store- 75% off the original price.

Marta: We need to catch that early train!

Cindy: Thanks for listening everybody! Catch up with us later on our Facebook Page or come visit our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com. Previous episodes of ‘’my American friend Podcast’’ are available for download on Podomatic & iTunes.

Marta: Come follow us on Twitter and browse our videos on Youtube.

Cindy: Marta & I want to wish all of you a happy & healthy holiday season. Thank you for all your support & kind words. Best wishes from our families to yours. Thank you for listening everyone.

Marta & Cindy: bye bye

_____________________________________________________________

VOCABULARY:

  1. To have a lot to catch up on– to have a lot to talk about, to have many work projects to finish.

EXAMPLE: The company meeting will be longer than usual because we have a lot to catch up on today.

EXAMPLE: I haven’t spoken with my friend Susan in three months. We have a lot of gossip to catch up on. Susan has a new boyfriend and a new job. We’re planning to have dinner next week so she can tell me everything!

 

  1. A catchy song, a catchy melody– a song that is instantly likeable. A song that makes you want to dance or sing along the first time you hear it.

EXAMPLE: That new One Direction song is so catchy! I can’t get it out of my head. I found myself singing it in the shower and again while driving to work.

 

  1. Let’s catch up- let’s talk about what’s new in our lives.

EXAMPLE: I haven’t seen you in 3 months! Let’s catch up, tell me everything that’s going on in your life. I heard that you’ve broken up with your boyfriend?? Tell me what happened!

 

  1. Did you catch a show/a movie?- Did you see a show/a movie?

EXAMPLE: Did you catch the new Jennifer Lawrence movie yet? Is it good? We’re going to see it next week.

 

  1. To catch the next train- to get on the next train.

EXAMPLE: Today is my mother’s birthday. We’re taking her out for dinner at 7:30pm. I must catch the next train home or I’ll miss her birthday dinner.

 

  1. Catch up with you later- See you or talk to you later.

EXAMPLE: I’m driving right now so I can’t talk to you. I’ll catch up with you later, okay? I’ll call you when I get home, around 6 o’clock?

 

  1. To catch a cold- to contract a cold.

EXAMPLE: It’s cold & rainy outside. Dress warmly tonight or you’ll catch a terrible cold!

 

  1. To catch germs- to contract germs, to become infected with.

EXAMPLE: I don’t want to catch your germs! Cover your mouth when you cough!

 

  1. It’s not catchy- it’s not contagious.

EXAMPLE: My head cold is over, I was sick two weeks ago. Don’t worry, it’s not catchy. You won’t get sick from me. I’ve recovered completely.

 

  1. Catch up with us later- come see us later, talk to us later

EXAMPLE: We’re meeting up for a pizza at 7pm. I know that you’re working late tonight, but try to catch up with us later at the pub. A bunch of us are going & everyone would love to see you! It will be a lot of fun!

Marta: Today we’re talking about to catch.

Marta: Cindy, hurry up! Get in here! We haven’t recorded in a long time and we’ve got a lot to catch up on!

Cindy: True. It’s been a while. We have a lot to catch up on. That means we have a lot to talk about, to become up-to-date on current events.

Marta: or for example: to catch up on work projects…

Cindy: …and to catch up on gossip! (laughs)

Marta: Exactly! (laughs)

Cindy: BUT there will be no catching up without a cup of coffee first!

Marta: Good idea.

Cindy: I’ll get the coffee and I’ll be right back…(footsteps)

Marta: (humming a song)

Cindy: Here’s your coffee. Hey, what’s that song you’re humming? Is that from your new album? I love it! It’s really catchy!

Marta: Yeah, it’s called “Back in the Saddle” and yes, it will be on the new album. What do you mean by ’really catchy’’?

Cindy: That means it’s instantly likeable! It makes me want to sing along with you! It’s a catchy tune.

Marta: Well, thank you. I’m very excited about this album. Just please don’t start singing Cindy, because you’ll break the microphone & we still have an entire podcast to record!

Cindy: It’s absolutely true. So, let’s catch up. What’s new in your life?

Marta: Well, I’ve been to “Music City” USA… Nashville, Tennessee baby!!

Cindy: That must have been amazing! Did you catch some great performances? That means ‘’did you see some great performances?’’

Marta: Actually, we didn’t catch anyone because we were so busy PLAYING (music)!

Cindy: I’m glad you had the chance to play Nashville. You deserve it. I bet you can’t wait to catch the next plane back to Tennessee?

Marta: And I’m happy to say that this April I will be on the next plane back to Tennessee!

Cindy: That’s wonderful! Oh, and that reminds me I want to catch the 5 o’clock train back to Bologna tonight.

Marta: Are you going to catch up with your husband after work?

Cindy: First, I want to do a little Christmas shopping. I’ll catch up with my husband for dinner later on.

Marta: It’s very cold & rainy tonight. Dress warmly or you’ll catch a terrible cold!

Cindy: Oh I know! I caught a cold last week. It was awful!

Marta: Uh Cindy, take your microphone and go stand over there. I don’t want to catch your germs.

(sound of disinfectant spraying)

Cindy: Wait! What are you doing? I’m not sick anymore! Stop spraying me with disinfectant!

Marta: Keep your germs on that side of the room!

Cindy: Don’t worry, it’s not catchy. My cold is long gone and I’m no longer contagious. You’re safe! (laughs)

Marta: Ok, but one single cough and you can catch the early train back to Bologna! (sprays disinfectant)

Cindy: Stop it! Oh, look outside! The weather is getting worse! (sound of rain) I may have to catch the early train if I want to get some shopping done tonight. (thunder & lightning)

Marta: Why do you need to go shopping tonight? (thunder) Go tomorrow, maybe it will be sunny?

Cindy: No, I REALLY need to catch that 5 o’clock tonight.

Marta: Are you buying more shoes?

Cindy: (silence)

Marta: I knew it.

Cindy: Ok, Ok, listen to me! Huge clearance sale. Leather boots. Name brands. Everything in the store- 75% off the original price.

Marta: We need to catch that early train!

Cindy: Thanks for listening everybody! Catch up with us later on our Facebook Page or come visit our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com. Previous episodes of ‘’my American friend Podcast’’ are available for download on Podomatic & iTunes.

Marta: Come follow us on Twitter and browse our videos on Youtube.

Cindy: Marta & I want to wish all of you a happy & healthy holiday season. Thank you for all your support & kind words. Best wishes from our families to yours. Thank you for listening everyone.

Marta & Cindy: bye bye

_____________________________________________________________

VOCABULARY:

  1. To have a lot to catch up on– to have a lot to talk about, to have many work projects to finish.

EXAMPLE: The company meeting will be longer than usual because we have a lot to catch up on today.

EXAMPLE: I haven’t spoken with my friend Susan in three months. We have a lot of gossip to catch up on. Susan has a new boyfriend and a new job. We’re planning to have dinner next week so she can tell me everything!

 

  1. A catchy song, a catchy melody– a song that is instantly likeable. A song that makes you want to dance or sing along the first time you hear it.

EXAMPLE: That new One Direction song is so catchy! I can’t get it out of my head. I found myself singing it in the shower and again while driving to work.

 

  1. Let’s catch up- let’s talk about what’s new in our lives.

EXAMPLE: I haven’t seen you in 3 months! Let’s catch up, tell me everything that’s going on in your life. I heard that you’ve broken up with your boyfriend?? Tell me what happened!

 

  1. Did you catch a show/a movie?- Did you see a show/a movie?

EXAMPLE: Did you catch the new Jennifer Lawrence movie yet? Is it good? We’re going to see it next week.

 

  1. To catch the next train- to get on the next train.

EXAMPLE: Today is my mother’s birthday. We’re taking her out for dinner at 7:30pm. I must catch the next train home or I’ll miss her birthday dinner.

 

  1. Catch up with you later- See you or talk to you later.

EXAMPLE: I’m driving right now so I can’t talk to you. I’ll catch up with you later, okay? I’ll call you when I get home, around 6 o’clock?

 

  1. To catch a cold- to contract a cold.

EXAMPLE: It’s cold & rainy outside. Dress warmly tonight or you’ll catch a terrible cold!

 

  1. To catch germs- to contract germs, to become infected with.

EXAMPLE: I don’t want to catch your germs! Cover your mouth when you cough!

 

  1. It’s not catchy- it’s not contagious.

EXAMPLE: My head cold is over, I was sick two weeks ago. Don’t worry, it’s not catchy. You won’t get sick from me. I’ve recovered completely.

 

  1. Catch up with us later- come see us later, talk to us later

EXAMPLE: We’re meeting up for a pizza at 7pm. I know that you’re working late tonight, but try to catch up with us later at the pub. A bunch of us are going & everyone would love to see you! It will be a lot of fun!

51 MONEY – podcast episode 51 – transcript

This time our episode is about MONEY.

“to HAVE AN ITCHY PALM” , “to GO BROKE” , “to BE DOWN-AND-OUT”, “MONEY TALKS”… learn a lot of expressions about money by listening to this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic :
http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2014-02-07T06_02_52-08_00

Here’s the transcript.
All the best,   
Marta

**************

M :  This episode is about MONEY !

M :  First of all :  Money is UNCOUNTABLE.

C :  Exactly- because I have none. I can’t count what I don’t have!

M: That’s not what I meant!

C: Alright, MONEY is UNCOUNTABLE. We can’t say one money, two moneys…, we can count Dollars, one Dollar, two Dollars…or Euros: one Euro, two Euros… but money is an abstract notion and it’s an uncountable noun.  That’s why we say:  money IS, not money are.

M :  Now let’s talk about CASH money,  for example, here’s my wallet.

C: You have money in your wallet??

M: A bit.

C: I have spider webs in mine.  Ok, Marta, that’s paper money.  BILLS.  We call them bills.  For example: a 10 dollar bill or a 20 Euro bill.   Ok.  That’s metal currency instead.  We call those small metal pieces COINS.

M :  Ok, bills and coins.   The one dollar bill can be called a BUCK, right?

C :  yes,  that’s why we can say “bucks”  whenever we mean dollars.  It’s informal but for example.. “Marta, I’m running out of cash, could you lend me 10 bucks please?”

M :  Sure!  10 bucks for you Cindy, here you are.

C :  Can you lend me a BENJAMIN ?

M :  …a Benjamin?

C :  that’s a nickname for the $100 bill, because Benjamin Franklin is pictured on the bill.

M :   ok,  so if you mention “Benjamins”  you are referring to hundred dollar bills.  And the answer to your question is: no, I’m not giving you a Benjamin, sorry.

C :   alright, I was just kidding.  Now let’s talk about coins.  They have nicknames too.  A 1 cent coin is a PENNY.   A 5 cent coin is a NICKEL, a 10 cent coin is a DIME and a 25 cent coin is a QUARTER.

M :  Right.   1 cent  Penny,  5 cent  Nickel,  10 cent  Dime,  25 cent  Quarter.

C :   For example, imagine I’m a poor person approaching you at the station.  I would say:  “Madam, can you spare a dime please?”

M :  ….a dime… 10 cents.  Yes, sure!

C :  Madam can you spare a Benjamin please?   J

M :  yes,…hmmm…wait a minute….a Benjamin is a hundred dollar bill… I’m afraid that’s a little too much !  Nice try, though!  J

C : I tried! Talking about coins, sometimes we toss a coin to make a decision in a neutral way.   That’s what happens in sports, for example, the referee tosses a coin at the beginning of a match to see which team is going to start first.

M :  Ok,  let’s toss a coin to decide who is going to talk about idioms regarding money.

C :  Heads or tails, Marta?   That means the face, the head, of the coin or the other side of the coin?  Heads or tails?

M :  hmmm…heads.

C :  Ok, tails for me.   Let’s see.   Tails.

M :  Ok, you won.   So go ahead, give us an idiom about money.

C :   All right.  I know 3 idioms about money mentioning body parts.   TO COST AN ARM AND A LEG.   That means to cost a lot!  For example: My new laptop computer cost me an arm & a leg.

M :  To cost an arm and a leg.  Ok.

C :   Another one is:  TO HAVE AN ITCHY PALM.   That means to ask for tips.  For example: That valet has an itchy palm. His hand is always out, asking for money.

M :   To have an itchy palm,  got it.

C :   Third one: TO HAVE STICKY FINGERS, to be a thief.   For example: The new shop assistant has sticky fingers and many items in the store have disappeared. They’ve stolen many items from the shop. The shop assistant has “sticky fingers”.

M :   to have sticky fingers…  hmmm…

C :   Marta? … hey…  a penny for your thoughts.

M :   …oh, yes, the Rolling Stones,  that’s where I heard Sticky Fingers before. Now I remember.

C :   yes, you’re right.

M :   by the way,  what did you mean when you told me  “A PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS” ?

C :   that’s another idiom.  It’s a nice way of asking someone what they are thinking.  Penny for your thoughts, what are you thinking about?

M :  a penny for your thoughts.  Nice one.  I like it.

C :   ok, Marta,  let’s move on,  we have to hurry up.  C’mon,  TIME IS MONEY.

M :   yeah,  that’s another idiom I’ve heard many times,  time is money.

C :   Time is valuable,  so don’t waste it.   Time is money.

M :   Another idiom I’ve heard is  MONEY DOESN’T GROW ON TREES.

C :   yeah,  it doesn’t,  so be careful,  do not spend your money like there’s no tomorrow,  because you only have a limited amount of money.  Money doesn’t grow on trees.  If you’re not careful, you can end up BROKE.  You can GO BROKE.

M :  That means to lose all of your money.  To become bankrupt.  To go broke.

C :  Exactly.   When you have no money left you are DOWN-AND-OUT.

M :  that reminds me of a song… “Nobody knows you when you’re down-and-out”.  Eric Clapton’s acoustic version is just wonderful.

C :   it’s sad but true,  when you’re down-and-out -when you have no money left- only a few good friends stick around to help you,  the other people kind of disappear.
On the contrary, if you have a lot of money you have the power and the influence to get things done. That’s what we mean when we say MONEY TALKS.  Wealth helps to get one’s own way.

M :  Money talks.

C :   Marta,  how do you feel about money?

M :  well,  as long as I earn enough money to live  I’m ok.

C:  you mean:  TO MAKE A LIVING.   We all have to work hard to make a living nowadays, because the cost of living is getting higher and higher.  Sometimes it’s hard to MAKE ENDS MEET.

M :  to MAKE ENDS MEET ?

C :  yeah,  to pay for your monthly expenses, the rent, the telephone bill, pet food and so on. Well, I hope our listeners are not struggling to make ends meet, I hope they have enough money to make a living and make their dreams come true.

M :  Yeah, everybody thank you for listening to this episode!    Hey, don’t forget to visit our website at www.myamericanfriendblog.com where you can read the transcript and the money-related expressions we’ve used, like:

C :  BILLS, COINS, BUCKS, BENJAMINS,  PENNY, NICKEL, DIME, QUARTER,  HEADS OR TAILS,  TO COST AN ARM AND A LEG,   TO HAVE AN ITCHY PALM,  TO HAVE STICKY FINGERS,   A PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS,   TIME IS MONEY,   MONEY DOESN’T GROW ON TREES,  TO GO BROKE,   TO BE DOWN-AND-OUT,  MONEY TALKS,  TO MAKE A LIVING,  TO MAKE YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE.

M :  Thank you again for your support.  Keep listening to our podcast on iTunes or on Podomatic.

C :  Also stop by our Facebook page and say “hi”!  Or follow us on Twitter, or browse our videos on Youtube.  Thanks for listening everyone!    Now, Marta, let’s go and have lunch.

M :  Ok, let’s go,  I’m buying.

C :  No, you don’t need to.  Let’s go Dutch.  Let’s share the cost of the meal.  Let’s go Dutch.

M :  No, really, I’m buying.  I have a Benjamin.

C :   you have $100 ?  Did you break your piggy bank or something?? Ok, “Miss Moneybags” then you can pay for dinner too!

M :  uh! C’mon, let’s go.  Bye everybody, see you soon!

**************************************************************

VOCABULARY:

1. BILLS paper money

EXAMPLE: He kept a stack of $100 bills in his bank vault.

2. COINS metal money.

EXAMPLE: Do you have any coins for the parking meter? It doesn’t take paper money, only coins.

3. BUCKS- informal word for dollars.

EXAMPLE: John is making big bucks in his new job! He’s bought himself a new car and a whole new wardrobe with his new salary.

4. BENJAMINS– slang word meaning hundred dollar bills.

EXAMPLE: He walked into the club with a stack of benjamins and paid for everyone’s drinks.

5. PENNY 1 Cent coin.

6. NICKEL– 5 Cent coin

7. DIME– 10 Cent coin

8. QUARTER– 25 Cent coin

9. HEADS OR TAILS?- a neutral way to make a decision, leaving the decision to be decided by the toss of a coin.

10. TO COST AN ARM AND LEG- expensive.

EXAMPLE: My high credit card bills are costing me an arm and a leg every month.

11. TO HAVE AN ITCHY PALM– to always have a hand out, asking for money/tips.

EXAMPLE: That valet is annoying, he has an itchy palm. He’s always looking for a tip.

12. TO HAVE STICKY FINGERS-to steal, to be a thief

EXAMPLE: The new shop assistant was fired for having sticky fingers. She stole nearly $500 bucks worth of merchandise during her first week of work. When the owner realized this she was immediately fired.

13. A PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS– what are you thinking right now?

EXAMPLE: You look worried. A penny for your thoughts? What’s the problem?

14. TIME IS MONEY– Don’t waste time because it is valuable.

EXAMPLE: Let’s go! Time is money! We must finish this job as soon as possible because we have another job waiting for us. If we are late, we may lose our next client.

15. MONEY DOESN’T GROW ON TREES money is not plentiful, not easy to earn. We must work hard to earn money.

EXAMPLE: No, I can’t buy you BOTH a new computer AND an iPhone. Money doesn’t grow on trees. I will have to save 2 months’ salary just to afford a new laptop. I’m sorry, but the iPhone is not possible right now.

16. TO GO BROKE– to lose all your money

EXAMPLE: If you keep gambling every night at the casino you’re going to go broke by the end of the month.

17. TO BE DOWN-AND-OUT– to be out of money, depressed, broke, in a desperate financial situation.

EXAMPLE: John has been down & out ever since he lost all his money in the stock market 5 years ago.

18. MONEY TALKS– money can influence, persuade people.

EXAMPLE: After 10 years, the building project was accepted because huge money bribes were paid to local politicians and officials. Unfortunately, money talks in this day and age.

19. TO MAKE A LIVING to earn enough money to pay bills and sustain yourself on your wage.

EXAMPLE: With a Law degree, Susan will make enough money after university to make a good living for her and her family.

20. TO MAKE YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE– to make your dreams a reality, to achieve your goals.

EXAMPLE: With a good job, John will make his mother’s dreams come true. His mother has always dreamed of owning a house. If he earns a good wage, he can one day buy his mother a small house.

50 THANKSGIVING – podcast episode 50 – transcript

Listen to Cindy and her friend Christine talking about the traditional THANKSGIVING day menu.

You can find this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic : http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-11-25T08_28_49-08_00   

Here’s the transcript.
All the best,   
Marta

**************

Marta: This episode is about THANKSGIVING.

Marta: Hey everybody, I’m so sorry but I have a cold! So, I have no voice- at all today. I think I’d better leave you with Cindy this time, right?

Cindy: Hey everyone! I’m here today with my friend Christine who’s an American artist living & working in Bologna, Italy. Hey Christine, thanks for being with us here today to talk about THANKSGIVING.

Christine: Hi Cindy, thanks for having me.

Cindy: Christine, what is THANKSGIVING?

Christine: American Thanksgiving, it’s a national holiday celebrated in November to commemorate the arrival of the Pilgrims to North America. They celebrated, with the Native Americans, the harvest.

Cindy: And when did it become a national holiday?

Christine: It first became a national holiday under Abraham Lincoln.

Cindy: Ok, let’s get to the good stuff- what was on that first menu?

Christine: That first Thanksgiving was celebrated in Plymouth Colony, which is now Massachusetts, and they had wild turkey, venison…

Cindy: …now, ‘’venison’’ is deer?

Christine: deer, yes….Indian corn, fowl…

Cindy: …and by ‘’fowl’’ you mean wild birds?

Christine: Wild birds.

Cindy: So, a pretty simple menu?

Christine: Yes, what they had at the time.

Cindy: Does any of that remain today, on the American menu?

Christine: Well, the most important part of the menu remains the turkey. So today we have the turkey and then the side dishes which are sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing, gravy and for dessert: pumpkin pie.

Cindy: Alright, let’s explain ‘’stuffing’’ a little bit better. What is stuffing?

Christine: Stuffing, it’s seasoned, cubed bread and some people put it in the turkey, others leave it on the side.

Cindy: Is it mixed with any vegetables?

Christine: Yes, carrots, onions, celery.

Cindy: And I know in some parts of America they even put oysters into the stuffing.

Christine: Yes, let’s say depending on your family the recipe changes from family to family.

Cindy: Now, I know that Thanksgiving is very important to you and your family. How did you celebrate Thanksgiving when you were growing up?

Christine: It was very important, and it still is, to my family. But I would say that all Americans celebrate and that’s what makes it important because it’s not religious, it’s centered around food and being thankful. It has a set menu and whether you’re with family or friends- everyone celebrates.

Cindy: It’s not religious. It’s not a religious holiday.

Christine: No.

Cindy: I’ve spent a lot of beautiful Thanksgivings with my neighbors and friends. Now, how will you be celebrating Thanksgiving here in Italy this year?

Christine: This year, I’m going to have Thanksgiving dinner with Italian friends. So now I’m trying to gather all the authentic ingredients so I can make the meal.

Cindy: Is it easy? Have you been able to find everything you need?

Christine: Well, in fact, the turkey is a problem because they’re quite large birds and I’m afraid it might not fit in the Italian ovens.

Cindy: You may have to cut it up! (laughs)

Christine: I think so! (laughs)

Cindy: (laughs) That’s good. And what other things will you have besides the turkey?

Christine: Sweet potatoes, I’ve found sweet potatoes. I’m looking now for cranberry sauce but I think I might have to use a substitute.

Cindy: There are some good substitutes out there. And what else? Are…will you have stuffing?

Christine: I’ll have stuffing. That’s easy to make. Also, pumpkin pie. I can find pumpkins here and I’ll roast it and make my own pie.

Cindy: Yum! Will you invite me? (laughs)

Christine: (laughs) Sure! Everyone’s invited, it’s Thanksgiving!

Cindy: Happy Thanksgiving, Christine.

Christine: Thank you, Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

Cindy: Thanks for being with us here today.

***

Cindy: Ok listeners, that’s all for now. You can read the transcript of this episode on our website: www.myamericanfriendblog.com. Thanks for liking us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, watching our videos on YouTube and listening to our podcast on iTunes and Podomatic.

Marta: Thank you everybody and Happy Thanksgiving!

Cindy: Bye bye!

***

You can visit our special guest, American artist Christine Boya, on her website at: www.tinyartpress.com. Christine is an accomplished artist living & working in Bologna, Italy. On her site you can read her bio and view her extensive collection of lovely handmade prints and greeting cards.

VOCABULARY:

Thanksgiving- American holiday celebrated on the 4th Thursday in November. The first Thanksgiving took place in 1621 when the Pilgrims, together with Native Americans, celebrated their first harvest in the New World. Modern day Thanksgiving celebrations are centered on family, friends, food and being grateful for what you have in life. A non-religious holiday, everyone celebrates Thanksgiving regardless of religious affiliation.

A traditional Thanksgiving Day menu includes:

Roast Turkey: traditionally, turkeys are roasted in the oven but in some parts of America turkeys are marinated and deep fried in hot oil. Deep frying the bird reduces cooking time and produces moist, succulent meat.

Stuffing (also called ‘’Dressing): cubed, seasoned bread mixed with various ingredients and cooked either inside the bird or in a separate dish. Common ingredients added to Stuffing are carrots, celery, onion, mushrooms, broth and butter. Recipes differ from family to family.

Sweet Potatoes: nutritious, sweet orange-fleshed potatoes served boiled, roasted, fried or baked whole.

White Potatoes: white fleshed potatoes served mashed with butter, roasted or baked whole.

Green Beans or String Beans: long, thin green beans served in their pods. The entire bean and pod is edible.

Gravy: a thickened sauce made from vegetables and pan juices left over from roasting the turkey. A bit of flour & butter are usually added to thicken the sauce.

Cranberry Sauce: a sweet & tart relish or jelly made from cooked cranberries & sugar

49 DEATH the HALLOWEEN episode – podcast episode 49 – transcript

HAPPY HALLOWEEN everyone!

“to SCARE TO DEATH”, “to be BORED to DEATH”, “to come to a DEAD END”, “to be a DEAD RINGER for”… learn a lot of expressions about death by listening to this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic :
http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-10-31T03_50_10-07_00

Here’s the transcript.

All the best,   Marta

**************

Marta: Today we’re talking about DEATH: The Halloween Episode!

Marta: Hi Cindy! Happy Halloween!

Cindy: Happy Halloween Everyone! (muffled)

Marta: What?

Cindy: (muffled) Happy Halloween Everyone! (spits out fake Dracula teeth) I said, Happy Halloween Everyone!

Marta: What in the world are you wearing on your teeth?!

Cindy: These are my Dracula teeth! (Cindy puts teeth back in) For Halloween!

Marta: Take those out! I WOULDN’T BE CAUGHT DEAD WITH YOU looking like that! They’re horrible!

Cindy: All right, all right! I’ll take them out.

Marta: Where did you buy those, at the 99 Cent Store? Do not wear those outside of this studio because…

Cindy: I know, I know “…because you wouldn’t be caught dead with me wearing them.” That means she’s embarrassed to be seen with me.

Marta: Yes!

Cindy: Ok, but hang on a second. Now I need to go brush my teeth. My mouth tastes like plastic. Watch my pet Scorpion while I’m gone. (sound of scorpion falling on desk)

Marta: (screams)

Cindy: Come on! just watch my pet Scorpion while I’m gone.

Marta :  Are you trying to SCARE ME TO DEATH!? You know that bugs scare me to death!

Cindy: Happy Halloween! I need to go brush my teeth. Relax, it’s not a real Scorpion…look!…he’s only rubber!  Touch it! Touch it!

Marta: Is there anything left at the 99 Cent Store? Or did you buy every last disgusting thing in there?

Cindy: Happy Halloween (sound of footsteps walking away)

Marta: That girl is going to scare me to death! Yuck! Scorpions!

Cindy: (footsteps return) Ok, I’m back. Are you okay?

Marta: Empty your pockets! Do you have any other disgusting things with you?

Cindy: No, nothing. My pockets are empty. I swear.

Marta: You promise?

Cindy: Promise.

Marta: Good!

Cindy: Y’know, I just didn’t want you to be BORED TO DEATH!

Marta: BORED to death?

Cindy: Yeah, you’re here in the recording studio, day in and day out. I was worried you might be tired of it, bored to death? Mr. Giant Scorpion is here to keep you company!

Marta: Boredom is not the problem!

Cindy: Check out our Facebook page later everyone and I’ll post a picture of Mr. Giant Scorpion.

Marta: ….and then Mr. Scorpion is going to disappear for a very long time.

Cindy: You’re a bug hater. Hey Marta! I do have one more thing in my bag and it’s not disgusting!

Marta: Oh, thank goodness!

Cindy: In fact, it’s pretty awesome! I have in my hands your new album 12n (Twelve Notes) “Country Made in Italy”. It’s a fantastic album! Congratulations you did a great job! I love it.

Marta: Well, thank you! I’m so excited about this new album.  We’re shooting the videoclip right now. It’ll be out in a month.  I think everybody’s going to enjoy it.

Cindy: And how can we view the video when it’s ready?

Marta: on our youtube channel.  It’s 12ntv. 1 2 n t v.   go check it out, there’s the making of of the CD, we had such a great time in the recording studio.

Cindy: And I love the cover photo and the mini-poster inside. You look hot!

Marta: Thanks, we had a lot of fun doing that photo shoot.

Cindy: The photo is beautiful. YOU LOOK DROP-DEAD GORGEOUS!

Marta: Drop-dead gorgeous.

Cindy: We say ‘’drop-dead gorgeous’’ to say that somebody is really beautiful, stunning, drop-dead gorgeous!

Marta: For example?

Cindy:  For example…Marta looks drop-dead gorgeous on her new album cover! (laughs)

Marta: And what about my husband? I think he looks so handsome in his cowboy hat & boots.

Cindy: Bellissimo! Very handsome! It’s amazing because when he wears that cowboy hat, he is a DEAD RINGER for Tim McGraw the American country singer.

Marta: A dead ringer for Tim McGraw. That’s good right?

Cindy: Yes it is! That means he looks just like Tim McGraw. He could be Tim’s stunt double! He’s a dead ringer!

Marta: He’ll be happy to hear that!

Cindy: And when he does his impression of Johnny Cash singing the country western song “Ring of Fire” he is DEAD ON!

Marta: So if we say ‘’His impression of Johnny Cash is dead on.” That means he does an exact impression of Johnny Cash, he sounds just like the real Johnny Cash.

Cindy: Exactly! His impression of Johnny is dead on!

Marta: He’ll be happy to hear that as well! He’s a big fan of Johnny Cash.

Cindy: Marta, tell everyone how they can purchase this awesome new album of yours: Twelve Notes “Country Made in Italy”

Marta:  it’s on iTunes.  Just search for  “Country made in Italy” by 12n (twelve notes), that’s 12n, 1 2 n.

Cindy: Perfect. Check it out everyone. It’s a great album. Marta & FedeRock have put every bit of their heart & soul into this album and it’s pretty amazing. My compliments to you on a job well done.

Marta: Thank you so much…you’re not going to pull another giant scorpion out of your pocket now, are you?

Cindy: No!  You’re safe! But, I think the show has COME TO A DEAD END here.

Marta:  It has come to a dead end, right. It’s time to wrap it up.

Cindy: It’s time to wrap it up and end this episode. It’s Halloween and I need to get home so I can hand out candy to all the little trick-or-treaters.

Marta: Happy Halloween and thanks for listening everyone!

Cindy: Happy Halloween and come visit us on our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com. You can also listen to previous episodes of “my American friend” on Podomatic & iTunes. And don’t forget to stop by and say hi on our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter!

(sound of doorbell ringing)

Cindy: What was that?

Marta: It sounded like the doorbell.

Cindy:  (doorbell rings again)  Who could it be? Nobody knows we’re here. Did you order a pizza?

Marta:   (sound of loud knocking)  No, I didn’t order anything. No one even knows that we’re in the studio.   (louder knocking)

Cindy: Don’t answer it! Maybe they have the wrong door.

Marta: Cindy! Look!   (sound of paper sliding under the door)

Cindy: Oh my gosh! It’s an envelope!

Marta: It’s got your name on it!

Cindy: And it’s written in red! Oh my gosh! Who’s doing this? Don’t open it!!!!

Marta:   (sound of Marta tearing open the envelope)    Oh no!

Cindy: What?

Marta: Oh NO!

Cindy: WHAT? What is it?

Marta: It’s from your credit card company.

Cindy: Oh (bleep)!

Marta: It says: “Dear Cindy, we regret to inform you that your credit card account has now been closed. Please destroy all your remaining credit cards. You can’t buy any more shoes. Sincere regards, Your Credit Card Company”

Cindy: NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!

Marta: Happy Halloween!

**************
Let’s sum up:
I WOULDN’T BE CAUGHT DEAD WITH YOU looking like that
bugs scare me to death
to be BORED TO DEATH
YOU LOOK DROP-DEAD GORGEOUS
he is a DEAD RINGER for Tim McGraw
His impression of Johnny is dead on
the show has COME TO A DEAD END

48 to WISH – podcast episode 48 – transcript

This time our episode is about the verb TO WISH.

MAKE A WISH everybody!  🙂
You can listen to the episode on iTunes or here:
http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-08-23T09_34_35-07_00

Here’s the transcript.
All the best,   
Marta

**************

M:   Today’s episode is about “TO WISH” !

(music :   “when you wish upon a star….your dream comes true” … )

C :  “when you wish upon a star your dream comes true”,  well, it’s August and there are a lot of shooting stars right now,  we should all give it a try and WISH upon a star,  MAKE A WISH listeners!

M :  I think the best thing in making a wish is that you take a moment to think about what it is that you really want.

C :   Yes, that’s important!  Be careful what you wish for when you see a shooting star!

M :  Ok, let’s take a look at this verb,  to wish.

C :  first off,  we can use it to WISH SOMEONE WELL.   Like in:  “I wish you all the best in your new job!”   or  “I wish you well with your career”.

M :   or “I wish you a speedy recovery”,   “I wish you a safe journey!”

C :   right,  or :  “wish me well on my exam!”

M :   oh, and there’s the famous :  “I wish you a Merry Christmas!”

C :   yeah, Marta,  thank you,  but… it’s August though.

M :   Ok, it’s not the right time of the year, right.    So, to wish someone something.

C :   uh-huh,  but we can also use the verb to wish  TO EXPRESS REGRETS  both for the present situation and about the past.   Marta, try and give us an example.

M :   …how about:  “I wish I lived in Nashville” ?

C :   ok. Where do you live?

M :   In Italy.

C :   So when you say “I wish I lived in Nashville”  you refer to the present situation.

M :   Yes,  but I have to use the simple past of the verb,  I wish I lived in Nashville.

C :   Exactly.   Let me think of another example…you’re allergic to grass pollen, aren’t you?

M :   Yes, I am, unluckily.  So… I wish I could enjoy springtime in the open air,  but I can’t.

C :  I wish I could,  right.

M :  now listen to this song:    “how I wish, how I wish you were here”

C :   Pink Floyd,  great song.   “how I wish you were here”,  again,  we use the simple past to talk about the present situation.   I wish you were here right now.   Can you think of another example?

M :  I wish I was taller!

C:   com’on, you’re not that short!

M :  but I’m not tall either.   I wish I was taller.

C :   You can also say:  I wish I were taller.    I WISH I WAS, I WISH I WERE,  both forms are correct.  I wish I were  is  more formal.   So… for example… it’s overcast today.  I wish it was sunny,  or I wish it were sunny.

M :  Got it.

C :  Now let’s talk about past regrets.  Like in:  I wish my team had won the championship.   That means:  my team didn’t win.   I wish it had.

M :  we use the past perfect here.

C :   past perfect, good.  For example: I wish I had chosen another school when I was in my teens”.   Or:  I wish you had told me about it before”.

M :  we can also use  “IF ONLY”  instead of wish,  correct?

C :  Yes. Using the past perfect when talking about past regrets :   If only I had chosen another school when I was in my teens!  Or :  if only you had told me about it before!   And using the simple past when talking about the present situation:   if only I was taller!  If only I lived in Nashville !

M :   or :  If only I had more time to study English!  That is:  I wish I had more time to study English!

C :  perfect!

C:  Well, friends, that’s all for now.   We wish you the best of luck in your English journey  and we hope that you can find enough time to listen to our podcast and practise the language! Previous episodes are available for download on Podomatic and iTunes.

M :  Also, stop by our Facebook page and say “hi”!

C :  Or log onto our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com . Follow us on Twitter, or browse our videos on Youtube.  Thanks for listening everyone!

M .  wishing you all the best.   See you soon!

C :  Bye!

47 AGE – podcast episode 47 – transcript

This time our episode is about AGE.

“to COME OF AGE” , “to be UNDERAGE” , “to be in one’s EARLY 30s” , “to LOOK one’s AGE”… learn a lot of expressions about age by listening to this new episode on iTunes or on podomatic :   http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-07-22T03_39_52-07_00

Here’s the transcript.
All the best,   
Marta

**************

M :   this episode is about  AGE !

M :   Hi everybody,  we know it’s been a while since we uploaded our last episode, but we’re back now.

C :   Well, listeners, it was all Marta’s fault,  she spent a whole month in the States, lucky girl- so she’s the one to blame. Just kidding, hey Marta, welcome back!   How was your trip to Nashville, Tennessee and Austin, Texas?

M :  Amazing!  I think I’ve seen more concerts in that month alone than in the rest of my life.

C :  And you also played a couple of times, didn’t you?

M :  Yeah, when I played one of my songs in Nashville, the home of songwriting…well, I was on cloud nine!  I was as happy as a child!

C :  “As happy as a child”, right, and that takes us back to our episode about AGE.  Let’s start with CHILDHOOD, the first period of life.

M :  Ok, what’s the difference between a NEWBORN, an INFANT and a TODDLER ?

C : A newborn child is a baby boy or baby girl who is just a few weeks old, they are newly born. A newborn.  And when they are a few months old, instead they are usually referred to as infantsToddlers are babies who are learning to walk & talk, they’re between the ages of one and three years old, more or less.

M :  ok, any other words about kids?

C :  A child under school age is called a PRESCHOOLER.

M :  oh, I wish I had more memories of those carefree years before SCHOOL AGE!  Those sweet days spent in the open air, trying to feed as much wildlife as possible…

C :  were you already fond of animals back then?

M : Oh, yeah,  my childhood was all about cats, dogs, birds, lizards, frogs, hedgehogs, even mice, any little creature was lovely to my eyes and worth feeding.

C :  Well, you’re excused: you were a preschooler  and you couldn’t read the signs saying  “do not feed the wildlife”.

M :  You’re right!

C :  Let’s move on to that period of time after childhood and before ADULTHOOD: ADOLESCENCE and YOUTH.  When you attend high school or college you are an ADOLESCENT,  a YOUNGSTER.  In particular, if your age ranges between 13 to 19 (that is: you’re in your teens) you’re a TEENAGER.

M :   What’s next?

C :  Then you are an adult, in your twenties, in your thirties…  For example, Marta, you are in your thirties, right?

M :  yes.

C :  are you in your EARLY 30s, in your MID 30s or in your LATE 30s ?

M :  I am not going to reveal that,  not even under torture.

C :  ok!  Fair enough… Anyway:  to be in one’s early 30s means to be 31, 32,33, to be in one’s mid 30s means 34, 35,36, to be in one’s late 30s means 37 38 39.

M :  Ok, for the record:  I’m not old, just older,  like Bon Jovi would say.

C :  Marta I had no clue you were afraid of GETTING OLD, of AGEING.

M :  No, really, I was just kidding,  GROWING OLD implies being wiser and I like that. Plus “youth is a state of mind”,  ain’t that what they say?

C :  Yeah,  youth is a state of mind, that’s what I keep telling my back. It’s too early to give up now! J

M :  That’s the same for me!  J))  ok, let’s go on.

C :  People from 40 to 60 are usually referred to as MIDDLE-AGED PEOPLE.  While people over 60/65 are called:  SENIORS or ELDERLY.    For example:  Bono Vox from U2 is a middle-aged person, he’s in his early 50s I think.   Clint Eastwood is an elderly person, he’s in his 80s.

M :  ok…for example…Sting is ….oh my, it’s hard to believe it, but he’s in his 60s now…should I call that super handsome man a senior??

C :   Yeah, I know, some people do not LOOK THEIR AGE, they look younger.

M :  Sting doesn’t look his age, absolutely not.  He’s like….ageless.   Hey, speaking of age, I have to call Ashley!  It’s her birthday!  She has finally turned 18 !

C :  Turning 18 is an important step in a teenager’s life.  That’s when you COME OF AGE.

M :  to come of age?

C :  that means to reach the age at which you have your adult’s rights.

M :  oh, I see.   Ok, wait a second, it’s getting late & I really have to call her.   (dialing).

ASHLEY:    Hello?   Hello?   (loud music in the background)

M :   Hi Ashley!  It’s Marta calling!

ASHLEY:   Marta, is that you?  I can’t hear a thing! Hello? Hang on…I have to update my status…

M :   Yeah, turn the music down for a second, please!

Ashley:  I can’t, we’re all dancing here, it’s my birthday party!

M :  yeah, that’s why I’m calling,  happy birthday sweetheart!

Ashley:   thank you!  Oh, Marta, you know who’s here?  Do you remember Christopher the quarterback?  And his cousin Spencer, oh, and Jennifer has come with her sister, she’s wearing pink and silver… why don’t you come and join us? It’s the best party ever!  And make sure to wear those silver heels, I want to show them to Debbie, she’s gonna be so jealous!

M :  Ashley,  I’m sure it’s a great party, thank you for inviting me,  I’m sorry, I have to work.   But, tell me, are you excited to be 18?   You’re not UNDERAGE anymore!

Ashley:   Yeah!  I’m an adult now!  Isn’t it cool?  Oh, and you wouldn’t believe what my mother told me this morning!!

M :  what is that?

Ashley:  oh, this is going to blow you away!  My mother told me that now I have the right to vote!

M :  (laughs) actually…I kind of …knew that.

Ashley:   oh, that is sooooo cool.  You know what?  I already know who to vote for at the next elections.

M :  you do?

Ashley:  Uh huh, I do!  Now that I’m 18 I know all about politics and politicians and political…stuff….  My mother always rumbles on having a female President,  like it’s time for a woman to be in charge and gender equality –or…quality?-…whatever.

M :   so who is your candidate?

Ashley:  ok, are you ready? Rihanna…I know, I know. It’s a good idea, right? Because she like always looks good, no matter what she wears. And that’s like soooo important for a First Lady. She can like be a blonde, she can be a redhead….I need to put that on my status.

M :  Ashley?  I’m sorry it’s a very bad line, I can’t hear you anymore…

Cindy:   well….that’s Ashley!  She doesn’t seem to have grown up a lot, does she?

Marta:   oh my, I’m afraid she’s 18 but she still behaves as if she were 14 or so.

Cindy :  She’ll figure it out eventually…hopefully. Hey, that reminds me of another expression:  TO ACT ONE’S AGE, to behave according to one’s age.

Marta:   like in that song by Prince, “Kiss”.  It goes: “ACT YOUR AGE, not your shoe size”.

Cindy:   yeah, what is your shoe size Marta?

Marta:   9

Cindy:   so act your age (thirty something), don’t act like a 9 year old!

Marta:  act your age, got it.

Cindy:  it’s a good rule!

 

C :  Ok, listeners,  that’s all for now.  You can read the transcript of this episode on our website: www.myamericanfriendblog.com , Thanks for liking us on facebook,  following us on Twitter,  watching our videos on youtube, and listening to our podcast on iTunes and Podomatic.

M: See you soon!

C:  Bye bye!

 

46 MAKING MISTAKES – podcast episode 46 – transcript

This time our episode is about MAKING MISTAKES.

Here’s the transcript.

All the best,  

Marta

Listen to the episode on iTunes or here:

http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-05-31T07_52_51-07_00

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Marta: Today we’re talking about MAKING MISTAKES.
Marta
: Ugh! It’s 3 o’clock. Cindy was supposed to be here at noon! Where is she?!
Cindy:  Hey girl! How are ya? Ok, here’s your coffee and here’s your copy of the script. Can I borrow your headphones? Is this mic on?
Marta: Where have you been?
Cindy: What do you mean? I was at the coffee shop. What’s wrong with you? Why are you using the finger- tapping sound effect?
Marta: You SCREWED UP, you’re late! You said you’d be here at noon!
Cindy: No I didn’t.
Marta: You are late!
Cindy:
It’s 3. I’m always here at 3 o’clock. Look, I’m even a minute early- it’s only 2:59…oh wait, now it’s three.
Marta:
 (Marta searching through text messages)  Look! Look!  Here’s your text… ‘’see you at noon! lol. smiley face!’’
Cindy:
Oh, I forgot!…I MESSED UP BIG TIME, didn’t I?
Marta:
Yes, you messed up BIG time! That means you made a big mistake. We had a lot of material to discuss….
Cindy
: ….and I was supposed to be here 3 hours ago. I’m sorry.
Marta
: We’re talking today about making mistakes.
Cindy
: Oh good! …Here’s your coffee…. I’m an expert! (laughs)
Marta
: Aside from today’s BLUNDER….
Cindy
: a blunder is a careless mistake….
Marta
: Can you think of any other huge ERRORS you’ve made?
Cindy:
Oh, you want to know about like EPIC FAILS? Really huge failures?
Marta:
uh huh.
Cindy:
Well, dying my hair red was a MAJOR FAIL! I won’t be doing that again anytime soon!
Marta
: No Cindy, I’m talking about a situation where you just fell flat on your face.
Cindy:
Ok, TO FALL FLAT ON YOUR FACE means to fail in an embarrassing way. Well, I’ve never been good at Math. I had to take high school Algebra twice.
Marta
: Twice?
Cindy
: Twice! And I remember having this big Algebra exam. It was like a sink or swim moment. I had to pass the exam or I would have to repeat the class the following year. SINK OR SWIM
Marta
: What happened?
Cindy
: Total BRAIN FREEZE!
Marta
: No!
Cindy:
Yes! Five minutes into the exam, my brain just froze and I forgot everything. I BOMBED. I failed the exam and the following year, when all of my classmates had moved onto the next level, I was still stuck in Level 1 Algebra. It was embarrassing!
Marta:
So you FLUNKED? You failed your Algebra exam?
Cindy:
Oh, I CHOKED! I BIT THE DUST HARD! I couldn’t remember the first thing about Algebra! In fact, that’s why I was late this afternoon, I’m still trying to pass my high school Algebra exam! (laughs)How about you Marta? Can you think of any GAFFES, screw-ups or a faux pas that you’ve made recently?
Marta:
Well, no. Not since this morning anyways! (laughs) Hey Cindy, what was that last expression you used? Did you say FAUX PAS? That’s French. It literally translates to false step.
Cindy:
Yes, a faux pas. That’s a commonly used expression. It means a social blunder, an error, an inappropriate remark. Someone had committed a major faux pas against a friend of mine recently.
Marta
: What happened?
Cindy:
Well, a woman asked my friend if she was pregnant. She’s not pregnant!
Marta
: That’s a serious faux pas!
Cindy
: Don’t ever ask a woman if she is pregnant unless you are 100% sure….
Marta
: …that she is in fact pregnant!
Cindy
: Ugh, people can be so cruel nowadays! I love the expression: ‘’If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all!’’
Marta: That’s good advice!
Cindy:
Hey Marta, why don’t we take a break for now and go out and grab a pizza? My treat, I’ll pay. I want TO MAKE IT UP TO YOU for being 3 hours late today.
Marta:
Oh…that’s okay Cindy…really, it’s no problem…I forgive you….
Cindy:
No, really. I feel terrible. I want to make it up to you. Let me buy you dinner tonight….I insist.
Marta:
No…let’s just stay inside and finish working. I’ll fix sandwiches and…
Cindy:
Come on! Let’s go outside! We have all night to work. I’ll get our coats.
Marta:
Cindy, have you even looked in the mirror today?! Look at your outfit!
Cindy:
What?? It’s a red blouse!
Marta:
…with a violet skirt…
Cindy:
…and green shoes! What’s the problem? I thought it would be fun and colorful! Was that a mistake?
Marta
: A mistake? Your outfit is not a mistake, it’s a crime against fashion!
Cindy:
Oh…you’re right! I should have worn the yellow blouse instead!
Marta:
Did you get dressed in a dark closet today?
Cindy:
Hey, whatever happened to ‘’if you don’t have anything nice to say- then don’t say anything at all’’??
Marta:
I’m sorry, but your outfit defies all logic!

Marta:  Thanks for listening everyone!
Cindy:
Thanks everyone! And be sure to read the bonus Vocabulary section at the end of this transcript.
Marta:
Stop by our Facebook page today and say hi!
Cindy:
Follow us on Twitter and watch our videos on Youtube! Download additional episodes of ‘’my American friend’’ on Podomatic and iTunes and be sure to check out our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com
Marta
: Take care, everyone! Bye!
Cindy:
bye!

**********************

*Vocabulary*

1. To “screw up”- to make a mistake.
EXAMPLE: You screwed up! Football practice started at 1 o’clock and you’re 2 hours late. You’re never going to be ready for Saturday’s game!

2. to “mess up’’ or to “mess up big time”- to make a huge mistake.
EXAMPLE: I messed up big time with Barbara! I went to the movies with another girl last Friday. Barbara’s friend saw us together. She immediately called and told her what I did. I really liked Barbara but now she never wants to see me again.

3. A “blunder” – to make a stupid or careless mistake.
EXAMPLE: I made a huge blunder at my sister’s wedding when I mistakenly thought her father-in-law was a waiter.

4. An “error”- a mistake.
EXAMPLE: It is very important to make a habit of proof-reading your work and utilizing spell check to avoid unnecessary errors that could cause you to earn a lower grade.

5. An epic fail- a term used by young people meaning to make a very big mistake.
EXAMPLE: Don’t even try to skateboard off that hill! It’s too steep. You’re going to lose control and crash. Don’t do it, it would be an epic fail!

6. Major fail- big failure, big mistake
EXAMPLE: How was your job interview today?
ANSWER: It was a major fail on my part! I dressed too casually in jeans & a t-shirt. Everyone was wearing neatly ironed shirts & ties. I called the boss by his first name instead of Mr. Jones and I forgot to bring my portfolio. I was completely unprepared. I’ll never get the job now!

7. to “fall flat on one’s face”- to fail in an embarrassing way.
EXAMPLE: Susan was not prepared for her big presentation at the conference. She had failed to memorize the material and did not write a very professional or convincing speech to accompany her presentation. This was her first big conference and she fell flat on her face by being badly prepared & unprofessional.

8. “Sink or swim”-  Fail or succeed.
EXAMPLE: Your 1 month probation period has ended here at the company. It’s “sink or swim” time now! You’ll have to do your best to succeed and not make any more mistakes otherwise you will be fired.

9. Brain freeze- to forget, unable to remember something.
EXAMPLE: I had a total brain freeze when I met Susan. She was so beautiful that I couldn’t even speak. I could barely remember my own name to introduce myself! J

10. to “bomb” at something- to perform badly
EXAMPLE: Last year I tried playing basketball but I bombed miserably! I lost the ball, lost my balance, fell flat on my face and spent the rest of the basketball season on the bench. I’m much better at football. Next year I will try out for the school football team.

11. to flunk- to fail, as in to fail an exam
EXAMPLE: Did you pass your driver’s exam?
ANSWER: No, I flunked the written part of the exam. I need to study the driver’s manual better and take the exam again next month. I’m determined to NEVER flunk again!

12. I “choked”- I failed, forgot the words, performed badly
EXAMPLE: I choked at my music recital! I forgot the words to the songs!

13. To bite the dust-  to break, fail, give out, die
EXAMPLE: John’s old car bit the dust last week. The engine finally died. He has decided to buy a new car instead of installing a new engine.

14. a ‘’gaffe’’- a social blunder or a noticeable mistake.
EXAMPLE: Susan committed a major gaffe during the diner party when she called John’s date by his ex-girlfriend’s name! We tried to stop her but it was too late.

15. to make a “faux pas”- (French) a social blunder, an inappropriate remark.
EXAMPLE: It is considered a great faux pas to ask a woman if she is pregnant if you are not first 100% sure that she is in fact pregnant!

16. To “make it up to someone”- to make amends
EXAMPLE: I’m sorry that you had to do my job yesterday. I want to make it up to you and show you how much I appreciate your help. I want to take you out for dinner and it’s my treat, I’m paying for it.

17. A “crime against fashion”- (joke) a very ugly outfit, an offense against fashion.
EXAMPLE: Did you see what that famous actress wore to the Oscars? That was a crime against fashion! That dress was so ugly! I can’t believe her stylist allowed her to wear it.

18. To ‘’go belly up’’- to fail, to go out of business
EXAMPLE: That pizza restaurant in town was very poorly managed. The owner spent all his money on fancy clothes and cars instead of improving the business. In one year the business went belly up and the restaurant closed its doors forever.

19. to ‘’Put my foot in my mouth’’ – to say something regretful
EXAMPLE: I put my foot in my mouth when I told my boss how great my ski trip was last week! I lied and said I wasn’t feeling well last week. Now she knows it was all a huge lie. I’ve made a big mistake and it will take a long time to earn her trust again.

20. To eat one’s words- to admit defeat, admit you were wrong.
EXAMPLE: John said Mark would be a terrible addition to the football team. John said he was too young and inexperienced. John had to eat his words when Mark became the team’s most valuable player by scoring the most goals during the season.

21. Politically incorrect- an offensive statement based on race, religion, sex, etc..
EXAMPLE: Politically incorrect and offensive statements will not be tolerated in this office. We work in a culturally diverse environment where we welcome people of all backgrounds.

22. To get carried away- to become overexcited, to overdue something, to be excessive
EXAMPLE: John got a little carried away when painting his bedroom. Now the entire room is blue! He even painted the floor and the doorknobs blue!

23. Frame of mind- mental state
EXAMPLE: I did very poorly on my final exam. I was sick with the flu, very tired and not in a good frame of mind. My professor knew I had been sick. He was very kind and allowed me to take the exam over. I got a much better score the second time and I am grateful for the second chance!

45 SOME ANY NO – podcast episode 45 – transcript

How to use the words SOME ANY and NO.

Here’s our new episode!

Enjoy!  🙂   Marta

Listen to the episode on iTunes or here:  

http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-05-19T14_45_09-07_00

**************

M :  today’s episode is about how to use the words: SOME ANY and NO !

C :  hey, Marta, why did you choose this topic?

M :  uh..well,  I teach English in a private school here in Italy, my course is called “English Amplifier”

C :  yes, and all of your students are so nice and so smart!

M :  you’re right, they are wonderful, all of them.  And they’ve been amazing this last year,  they have improved so much.  Let me send them a big hello:  hey guys, you’re the best!

C :  Hey guys!

M :  Back to your question, some of my students at English Amplifier asked me about the difference between “some” and “any”.  And I thought that maybe it could be interesting to our listeners as well.

C :  Ok, let’s start by saying that ‘SOME’ is used in positive statements and ‘ANY’ in questions and negative statements.

M :  Right.

C :  for example :   Marta, do you have any friends in Michigan ?

M :  Yes, I do.  I have some dear friends in Michigan.

C :  And do you have any friends in New Zealand ?

M :  uhm… no, I don’t have any friends there.  I don’t know anybody from New Zealand. Not yet.

C :  Do you know anybody living in Australia?

M :  I do know somebody living in Down Under,  yes,  our beautiful friend Laura.

C : Hi Laura! Find a cute Koala bear and give him some nice big kisses from me and Marta.  🙂

M :  Ok, the main rule is clear.  SOME in positive statements and ANY in questions and negative sentences.

C :  But whenever there’s a rule, there is  also….

M :  ….the exception to the rule?

C :  Exactly.  SOME is used in questions  -instead of any-  when we’re dealing with REQUESTS  for example:  “Excuse me, could you give me some information about this museum?” or :  “Can I have some water please?”

M :  and OFFERS,  like in :  Would you like some bread?   Can I get you something to drink?

C :  Right,  again:  we use SOME in questions only for OFFERS and REQUESTS.

M :  Ok, got it.

C :  now let’s take a better look at negative sentences.  Let’s imagine …an empty fridge.

M :  how sad!  Ok, the fridge is empty…and I’m hungry.

C :  I’m sorry Marta,  There isn’t any food in the fridge.

M :  There isn’t any food in the fridge.  Not Any.  That’s  “any” used in a negative sentence.

C :  Right, but I can also say:   There is no food in the fridge.

M :  “no” stands for “not any”.

C :  when “no” is used the verb is positive.   For example:.   there isn’t anything to eat.  There is nothing to eat.   Or:   There aren’t any kangaroos in Italy.   There are no kangaroos in Italy.

M :  Laura, please, next time you visit Italy bring us some kangaroos! 🙂

C :    Kangaroos, koalas, wombats…we’ll be happy with petting any cute animals from Australia.

M :   oh, wait a second.  You’ve just used “any” in a positive sentence.

C :  yes,  when “any” is used in a positive statement it means : “it doesn’t matter which”.  For example:  “you can call me any time in the afternoon”. or:  “A mother can do anything for her children”.     Or :  Where do you want to go on vacation this summer?  We can go anywhere as long as there are beaches and sunshine.”

M :  Sunshine!  We definitely could use some sunshine here in northern Italy.

C :  oh yeah, we’ve had a most unusual and terrible winter, with a lot of snow, never-ending rain and even hailstorms lately.   Anyway, it’s May now and the weather will improve for sure.

M :  Quoting the film “The Crow” :  it can’t rain all the time!  🙂

C :  We hope so!

C : Ok, listeners,  that’s all for now.  You can find the transcript of this episode on our blog: www.myamericanfriendblog.com ,  Thank you everyone for liking us on facebook,  following us on Twitter,  watching our videos on youtube.  We have received a lot of comments lately,  we’re always very happy to hear from you.   Special thanks to :

M :  Olivier, Bairma, Gabor, Sergio, Afshin, Gertraud, Manfred, Angela, Hoa Tran, Alessandro, Igor, Letizia.  Thanks everybody!  Bye bye!

C : Bye!

44 ANIMALS – podcast episode 44 – transcript

“to be PACKED IN LIKE SARDINES”, “to have EYES LIKE A HAWK”, “to EAT CROW” …. learn a lot of animal-related expressions by listening to our new episode!

Here’s the transcript.

Enjoy!  🙂   Marta

Listen to the episode on iTunes or here:  http://info40650.podomatic.com/entry/2013-04-06T07_51_12-07_00

**************

Marta: Today we’re talking about “ANIMALS” !

Cindy: Hi Marta! Hey Marta, I love your hair & make-up today! You look beautiful!

Marta: Thank you, Cindy!

Cindy: You’re a STONE-COLD FOX!

Marta: Uh?…that’s a compliment, right??

Cindy: Yes! To call someone a ‘’stone cold fox’’ is a great compliment! It means they’re very good looking!

Marta: ok, then. You’re right then, I AM a stone cold fox!    🙂

Cindy:  Y’know, Marta, I was thinking that you love animals so much and I love animals, and I’m sure that we have a lot of listeners out there who love animals too. Wouldn’t it be fun to do an episode about animal-related idioms and expressions?

Marta: Sounds great!

Cindy: Alright get the sound effects button ready.    Let’s begin with your home: you’ve got a BIRD’S EYE VIEW through your living room window! It’s incredible! I can see all the surrounding hills.

Marta: A bird’s eye view.

Cindy: A bird’s eye view means you’re high up and you have a good view of everything below you. A bird’s eye view.

Marta: I like that! How about another?

Cindy: Ok, what if I say ‘’John has EYES LIKE A HAWK!’’

Marta: Then he must have very good vision?

Cindy: Exactly, if someone has ‘’eyes like a hawk’’ they have very good vision and are attentive to everything.

Marta: What if we refer to someone as being ‘’LIKE A PARROT’’?

Cindy: Oh, here we must be very careful!  🙂   Little children are like parrots– they’ll repeat everything you say! So be sure to only use polite language around them!

Marta: Useful advice! Cindy, I once heard the expression ‘’TO EAT CROW’’, what does it mean?

Cindy: To ‘’eat crow’’ means admitting that you were wrong and then suffering humiliation from it! We don’t actually eat a bird, a crow, it’s just an expression.

Marta: Can you give us a sentence?

Cindy: Sure! Steve had been bragging all year long about how his favorite football team was so awesome and they would surely beat out everyone to win the Super Bowl….

Marta: I remember!

Cindy: But when his team failed to even make the play-offs, he had to eat crow and finally admit they were a terrible team!

Marta: Got it.

Cindy: Better luck next time loser!

Marta: Ok, we’ve got it! There’s no reason to be mean to Steve!

Cindy: But seriously, Steve, your team is made up of a bunch of like DINOSAURS!!

Marta: Why? Because they’re old?

Cindy: …and nearly extinct! Seriously, they’re like slow…like a bunch of TURTLES. My grandmother moves faster than his team.

Marta: (sigh) ….moving on.

Cindy: Let’s talk about bugs.

Marta: You know I HATE bugs!

Cindy: I know, but unfortunately the word ‘’bug’’ is used everywhere. We can use ‘’BUG’’ to describe a problem with our computer.

Marta: Right.

Cindy: We also use ‘’bug’’ to refer to a minor illness, like a head cold or the stomach flu. If I say: I’m feeling really tired today and I’ve got a headache and a sore throat.’’

Marta: Hmm…then you must have CAUGHT A ‘’BUG’’. Ok, Cindy…let’s change the subject! Talking about bugs is starting to bug me!

Cindy: (whispering) That means she’s annoyed!

Marta: If you want to talk about bugs- then I will talk about snakes!

Cindy: No!! Not snakes! I hate snakes!

Marta: If I call someone a ‘’SNAKE’’.

Cindy: Then it’s not a compliment. It means they are sneaky, crafty, untrustworthy. Ok, ok, that’s enough creepy stuff. I’m starting to get GOOSE BUMPS Ick! Snakes!

Marta: When talking about snakes, Cindy is a big CHICKEN!

Cindy: It’s true! If someone is a chicken, that means they’re afraid, or not very brave. For example: I never watch horror movies- I’m too chicken!

Marta: It’s just acting! It’s not real!

Cindy: You wanna know the last time I watched a horror movie?

Marta: You’re a chicken!

Cindy: That’s right I am. 1999. That’s the last time I saw a horror movie in a theater. 1999. I saw ‘’The Sixth Sense’’ with Bruce Willis.

Marta: I would have loved to have been a ‘’FLY ON THE WALL’’ in that movie theater!

Cindy: Great expression! ‘’A fly on the wall’’ that means you want to quietly watch & hear what happens in a room- without anyone actually knowing that you are there. ‘’A fly on the wall’’. It’s a good one.     Oh, how about ‘’THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM’’?

Marta: That’s an obvious problem or situation that nobody wants to discuss.

Cindy: ‘’The elephant in the room’’

Marta: And if you can’t see the elephant in the room?

Cindy: That would be me! I have terrible vision! (laughs) If someone has very poor vision then we say ‘’they are BLIND AS A BAT!’’

Marta: Someone with poor vision is ‘’blind as a bat’’. Got it.

Cindy: And speaking of vision, it’s nice to see the sunshine again isn’t it? I think we’re finally at the tail end of winter. It’s nearly over.

Marta: I hope so.

Cindy: Before you know it, it will be warm & sunny…

Marta: …and we’ll all be back at the beach!

Cindy: PACKED IN LIKE SARDINES!  🙂    If we say ’we’re packed in like sardines’’ that means there are a lot of people packed into a small area, like sardines (small fish) in a can.

Marta: …or like an Italian beach during mid-August!

Cindy: Oh my, if any of you have ever experienced an Italian beach during mid-August- you will surely understand the meaning of ‘’packed in like sardines’’   🙂   And we invite you to take a look at the vocabulary at the end of this transcript. It’s PACKED with lots of fun animal-related expressions and idioms!

Marta: Cindy, are you trying to WORM YOUR WAY OUT OF this episode?

Cindy: Am I trying to avoid the responsibility of doing my job? Uh, yeah!!! The sun is shining for like the first time in a month! Let’s go out and enjoy it!

Marta: Good idea! Thank you for listening everyone!

Cindy: Thanks everyone…and a special thanks to my husband Gio who gave us the idea for this episode! Have a great day everybody! And be sure to come visit us on our blog at www.myamericanfriendblog.com. You can also catch us on Facebook, iTunes, Podomatic, Twitter and Youtube!

********************

VOCABULARY:

1. A ‘’stone cold fox’’- Slang term for someone very good looking, attractive, hot, beautiful, handsome.

EXAMPLE: Susan is a stone cold fox! She’s so beautiful. All the guys in the office are crazy about her!

2. To have a ‘’bird’s-eye view’’- An excellent view from high above the ground.

EXAMPLE: I love airplane travel because I can have a bird’s eye view of the Earth. From my window, I can see mountains, rivers, fields and clouds. It’s fascinating for me!

3. to have ‘’eyes like a hawk’’- to have excellent vision, like that of a hawk. To be very attentive to your surroundings. To watch everything. To pay close attention.

EXAMPLE: My mother has eyes like a hawk! She always knew when my brothers & I were about to get into some mischief! She always caught us before we did anything wrong.

4. To be ‘’like a parrot’’-to repeat everything one hears, like a parrot.

EXAMPLE: We are always very careful not to use any bad language in front of my 3 year old niece. She’s like a little parrot, she repeats everything she hears from the adults!

5. To eat crow- to admit you were wrong after making a strong argument and suffer humiliation afterwards.

6. To refer to something as a ‘’dinosaur’’- to imply that something is old, outdated, antique, slow.

EXAMPLE: My laptop computer is a dinosaur! It’s old, functions slowly and crashes quite often. I must save my money and purchase a new one this year.

7. Computer bug- an error, flaw, failure or fault in a computer program or system

EXAMPLE: Tomorrow I’ll take my laptop to be repaired. I must have a bug. It keeps crashing, causing me to lose all my unsaved data.

8. To catch a bug- to contract a minor ailment like a head cold or the stomach flu.

EXAMPLE: I’m feeling very tired today. My throat is sore and I have a headache too. I must have caught a bug. Tonight I will go to bed early and get a good night’s sleep.

9.To ‘’bug’’ someone- to annoy someone

EXAMPLE: It’s easy to bug my sister. She hates my preference in music. I love listening to rap. She always becomes annoyed whenever I turn my stereo on!

10. To call someone ‘’a snake’’- to call them untrustworthy, dishonest, sneaky, crafty.

EXAMPLE: My sister’s ex-boyfriend is nothing but a snake. He lied to her and cheated on her with her best friend. Our parents were so happy when she finally broke up with him because he was a terrible person.

11.  To get ‘’goose bumps’’ from something-   a roughness of the skin produced by erection of its papillae especially from cold, fear, or a sudden feeling of excitement (Merriam-Webster definition)

You can get goose bumps from either good or bad sensations.

EXAMPLE of a bad sensation: My uncle is terrified of spiders. Every time we talk about spiders he gets goose bumps and his face turns pale. We never mention spiders any more when he is around us! J

EXAMPLE of a good sensation: I got goose bumps when I heard Whitney Houston sing The Star Spangled Banner at the Super Bowl back in 1991. She had the most incredible singing voice I had ever heard.

12. To be a ‘’chicken’’– to be easily scared, not brave, without courage.

EXAMPLE: I’m such a chicken when I watch horror movies! I am so easily scared that I spend the entire movie with my hands covering my eyes!

13. To be a ‘’a fly on the wall’’- to go unnoticed, to quietly observe without speaking or calling attention to yourself.

EXAMPLE: I would like to be a fly on the wall during the board meeting this afternoon. I would like to see how the decisions are being made about our company’s future.

14. An elephant in the room- an obvious subject, problem, situation that no one wants to talk about.

EXAMPLE: Everyone was smiling & friendly during the office meeting, but nobody wanted to discuss the elephant in the room– which is the future of the company and our job security. For months, the company has been falling deeper into debt and rumors of layoffs & bankruptcy are flying around the office.

15. To be as ‘’blind as a bat’’- to have poor vision, a joke term meaning someone’s vision is so poor they must use sonar instead of their eyes to ‘’see’’ what is around them.

EXAMPLE: I’m blind as a bat without my glasses! I must wear them all the time in order to see clearly.

16. To be ‘’at the tail end’’ of something- to be at the end of something

EXAMPLE: I purchased my airline ticket at the last moment and therefore my seat was located at the tail end of the aircraft.

17. To be ‘’packed in like sardines’’- many people packed into a small area.

EXAMPLE: The heat was oppressive in the disco. We were packed in like sardines with no open windows. It was very hot and unpleasant. We left early and went for a walk on the beach instead of dancing.

18. To worm your way out of something- To avoid responsibility, to make excuses and leave before the job is finished

EXAMPLE: My brother was supposed to clean his room today but he wormed his way out of it by saying he had to study for a big exam on Monday.

19. Crocodile tears- fake tears, insincere emotions

Although they worked together for many years, Susan always hated Barbara. She was petty & jealous of everything Barbara had accomplished and spoke unkindly about her. When Barbara was fired from her job because of budget cuts, everyone in the office was sad. Susan cried crocodile tears. Everybody knew it was a false display of emotion because Susan had been so mean to Barbara.

20. Something ‘’smells fishy’’- Something sounds dishonest, to suspect someone of lying

EXAMPLE: Although John had a good excuse for arriving home at 3am, Barbara thought something ‘’smelled fishy’’. John had been spending a lot of time away from home lately and she suspected he may be having an affair with another woman.

21. To be ‘’sly as a fox’’- to be crafty, sneaky.

EXAMPLE: I never take my car to that mechanic! He’s as sly as a fox. If you go in for an oil change, you’ll leave with a new engine! He’s very good at finding ways to charge you extra money for simple jobs.

22. To be as ‘’slow as a snail’’- to move very slowly

EXAMPLE: I really need to purchase a new computer, the one I have is 10 years old and slow as a snail!

23. Snail mail- letters, cards and packages stamped & sent the traditional way using the postal service, instead of electronically through email.

EXAMPLE: My aunt Barbara prefers to send letters through snail mail. She’s never learned to use a computer. She laughs and says she’s too old to learn now.

24. To be a ‘’bull in a china shop’’- by using the word ‘’china’’ we refer to fine, delicate dishware (not the country of China). Expression to describe a person who is clumsy, rough, awkward, unsophisticated, destructive.

EXAMPLE: My brother is like a bull in a china shop! He’s so clumsy. My mother is always buying new dishes and glasses because my brother has a tendency to break everything he touches.

25. To be as ‘’strong as an ox’’- to be very strong, to have the strength of an ox.

My brother is an excellent athlete. He’s as strong as an ox! He’s very good in wrestling and weight lifting.

26. To be as ‘’stubborn as a mule’’- to be very stubborn, hard headed, unwilling to change opinion or listen to advice.

My sister’s car is a piece of junk. It’s always breaking down and costing her lots of money in repairs. I keep telling her to buy a new car but she’s as stubborn as a mule and refuses to listen to me. She thinks her old car is just fine.