Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Show 539 Wednesday 24 October

Watch today’s show at YouTube or BlipTV.

Hi, I’m Sarah, welcome to The Daily English Show.

Today is mistake day and I’d like to tell you about a useful site about mistakes.

The site is by Paul Brians who is a Professor of English at Washington State University in the United States – so obviously it’s about American English.
And it’s not actually for English language students. It’s talking about the common mistakes of native English speakers in the United States.
But I still think it could be useful for you. And if you’re a native English speaker interested in language then I think it’s a fun site to browse. You can think, “Mmm what does that word mean?” And click on it and have a read ... it’s really interesting.

Here’s an example which could be useful for language learners: vain vane vein
Three different words with the same pronunciation.

This is what he says about this vain:

When you have vanity you are conceited: you are vain. “You’re so vain you probably think this song is about you.” This spelling can also mean “futile,” as in “All my love’s in vain” (fruitless). Note that when Ecca-something ( Ecclesiastes) says that “all is vanity” it doesn’t mean that everything is conceited, but that everything is pointless.

Next vane:
A vane is a blade ... blah, blah, blah ... I don’t think that one’s very important.

And the last vein:
A vein is a slender thread of something, like blood in a body or gold in a mine.

I can see veins in my arms. They’re blue lines.

And he says:
It can also be a line of thought, as in “After describing his dog’s habit of chewing on the sofa, Carlos went on in the same vein for several minutes.”


Kia Ora, this is Stick News. For the last four days massive fires have been burning in Southern California in the United States. More than 900,000 residents have been evacuated and at least 1,500 homes have been destroyed.

Southern California is the southern portion of the US state of California.
Recently, the area has been extremely dry and windy.
On the 20th of October a series of wildfires started burning.
Today, 16 fires were burning. Several fires were thought to be started by power lines which were knocked down by winds. Others may have been arson.
According to Wikipedia six people have died and at least 70 others have been injured.
The Californian Governor declared a state of emergency in seven California counties. And the President of the United States signed a major disaster declaration.
CNN reported there were 76,000 people staying in 42 shelters in San Diego County this morning. Including thousands of people staying in a sports stadium.
According to an emergency official the cost of homes destroyed by the fires is likely to top $1 billion in San Diego County alone.

And that was Stick News for Wednesday the 24th of October.
Kia Ora.


Which language would you most like to study and why?

Um, I would love to continue studying French in France. I did an exchange when I was in grade 10 and I was way too young to care about it. Like, I was just like, “oh yay, I’m in France”.
But I’d love to go back there and become immersed in the culture and stuff. And just get to know it better because I definitely didn’t appreciate it when I could do it.

Italian, because my family’s from Italy.

I’d like to study Spanish because I think it’s one of the, kind of, next emerging languages. So it’s going to become really important economically and to get jobs. And I think the more languages you have the better chance of getting jobs. Plus, I’d love to go to South America. So I’d love to have that language so I could work down there.

I guess English is the, ah, language that I want to study, because, ah ... in my way of thinking, I guess English will, ah, be most useful. Although my mother, mother language is Chinese, but I guess English, ah, will be a very good choice to be my second languages. So, I guess, that will be OK.

French. Because it’s a romantic language, that’s why.

conversations with sarah

#334 You must get annoyed sometimes.

Step 1: Repeat Jim’s lines.
Step 2: Read Jim’s lines and talk to Sarah.

Jim Do you have any pet language peeves?

Sarah Yeah, kind of. Well, I mean, I’m a teacher so when students make mistakes I don’t get annoyed.

Jim You must get annoyed sometimes.

Sarah Yeah, sometimes secretly. But I would be a really bad teacher if I showed the student I was annoyed at them making a mistake, because it’s perfectly natural to make mistakes. I mean, if they spoke perfect English they wouldn’t need lessons, right?

Jim True.

Sarah Anyway, OK, I’ll try and think of something that annoy me. OK, マイカー。That’s Japanese.

Jim What does it mean? My car?

Sarah No, it could mean my car, your car, anybody’s car. It just means … a car that someone owns privately, as opposed to a rental car or a stolen car or something.

Jim How do you use it?

Sarah For example, 彼女はマイカー通勤です。And if you translated that literally, it would mean, “she goes to work in my car”. But it doesn’t mean that, it means: “she drives to work”. Or, “she drives her own car to work”. But it’s like ... my car? She doesn’t drive my car to work, it’s her car!

Jim Are there any other words like that?

Sarah Oh, yeah: マイペース. Another ridiculous word. You say to someone: please go at “my pace” when you mean your pace. Crazy.

Jim But people don’t say that in English.

Sarah Yeah, no they don’t. But students do – because sometime Japanese is the name as English, like カメラ means camera, exactly the same, no problem. But マイペースdoesn’t mean my pace.

You're so vain, you probably think this song is about you.
This is a line from a song called You're so Vain by Carly Simon. This song was written in 1972.
Listen to the song here.



show start
artist: AdHoc
album: Toutes directions
track: La note en cage
from: Annecy, France
album at Jamendo
artist at Jamendo
artist site

asking acadia start
artist: XL Ant
album: XL Ant
track: Levitation (Club Mix)
album at Jamendo
artist at Jamendo
artist site

cws start
artist: San Sebastian
track: Happy Sad
artist site

qa start
artist: Manu Cornet
album: Distance & Temps
track: Silk Road
from: Paris, France
album at Jamendo
artist at Jamendo
artist site

qa bgm

artist: Carlos Rives
album: Improvisaciones
track: Noesis 4

from: Andratx, Spain
album at Jamendo
artist at Jamendo
artist site

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