How to Get a Date by Lingering

In another edition of English With Your Coffee, I talk about a newspaper headline related to “lingering.” I also explain one of the reasons I wasn’t very good at dating when I was younger.

~Jeff

P.S. For more English related to the verb to linger, see our Daily English 61 – Missing Person. And for vocabulary related to asking someone out on a date, see Daily English 351 – Asking for a First Date.

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on How to Get a Date by Lingering

Dancing With Ghosts: The Mysterious Visions of Wovoka

You may know that the word “ghost” means the image of a dead person who can be seen by the living.

When I was a kid, people would sometimes tell “ghost stories” about scary (frightening) places, such as haunted houses, where ghosts were said to live.

I didn’t believe in ghosts, really. But some people do, and take that belief very seriously.

An example from American history is the “Ghost Dance,” a religious movement (people working together to create or advance an idea) popular among some Native American (American Indian) tribes (cultural groups) in the late 1800s.

The Ghost Dance was begun in 1890 by a man named Wovoka. He was a Native American religious leader from the Northern Piute tribe, found largely in Nevada, the state next to California (and home of Las Vegas).

Wovoka, also known as Jack Wilson, was said to be a prophet (person who can tell others the meaning of messages from God).

Some tribal members thought Wovoka could interpret (explain the meaning of) mysterious (unknown; strange) visions  (seeing of something not there or related to the future) directly from God.

Wovoka said that he saw visions many times in his life. But it wasn’t until he got older that he learned to interpret them.

On January 1, 1889, when he was 33 years old, Wovoka said he saw an important vision.

He said that God showed him a place where the Native American people lived in peace (without war or conflict) with whites (Caucasian men and women).

God, he said, gave him the Ghost Dance, a religious dance performed in a circle.

Wovoka said God told him to take the dance back to his people. By including the dance in their religious ceremonies, according to Wovoka’s vision, they would help wipe out (eliminate) evil (forces causing bad things to happen) from the world and fill the world with food, love, and faith (belief in God).

As news of Wovoka’s vision spread (became known to many people), many different tribes in the United States sent representatives to find out more about Wovoka and what he claimed (said was true but without proof) to have seen.

Learning about the Ghost Dance, many tribes incorporated it into (started to use it in)  their own religious practices (regular behaviors and actions).

However, there were other tribes that did not accept and believe in this concept (idea) and dismissed (did not accept) it altogether (completely).

Wovoka’s dream of whites and American Indians living peacefully together was never truly realized (didn’t happen), at least not the way Wovoka thought it would.

Still today, there are some American Indian tribes that use the dance in their ceremonies.

~Jeff

P.S. This story of Wovoka comes in part from our Cultural English lesson 510. To get more lessons about American culture and history, try our Unlimited English Membership.

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Life in the United States | Comments Off on Dancing With Ghosts: The Mysterious Visions of Wovoka

English With Your Coffee: Rallies, Momentum, and Mementos

 

We talk about stock market rallies, momentum, and mementos in this edition of English With Your Coffee.

Grab a cup of your favorite beverage (drink) and enjoy!

~Jeff

P.S. For useful English about the stock market, check out Daily English 276 – The Stock Market.

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on English With Your Coffee: Rallies, Momentum, and Mementos

Right Off the Bat

Today I talk briefly about two popular expressions in English: “right off the bat” and “hit it out of the bark.” Both are related to the world’s greatest sport, baseball.

Enjoy!

For more idiomatic expressions, check out our Daily English lessons in our Unlimited English membership.

And if you want to learn more about the world’s greatest sport, baseball, listen to our Cultural English 50.

~Jeff

P.S. Like this short English lesson? Get a FREE sample lesson (no money needed) – SIGN UP BELOW!

Just fill out the form below and we’ll send a FREE lesson to try!

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on Right Off the Bat

English at Home: Some Ideas for You and Your Children

If you’re looking for new ways to improve your and your children’s English as you stay at home during this coronavirus crisis, here are two ideas.

Simple English Stories: For Beginners and Children

For those who are beginners or children, we’re releasing (making available for purchase) today a video version of our Simple English Stories.

Our new Simple English Stories video course includes nine different short stories written for children and low-level English learners (three sets of three stories each).

All nine stories can be enjoyed by children. Three of the stories in each set are written also for an adult, so you can learn and laugh along with your children.

The course includes a complete transcript, fast and slow versions of the video (with captions (words on screen)), and a glossary with sample sentences.

See a sample of the course in the video above.

If you have children and some extra time (and most of us do), Simple English Stories is a good place to spend part of your stay at home.

Free Graded Readers: For Intermediate Adults

From now until June 30, 2020, Oxford University Press is making available for free electronic copies of their entire graded reader series – more than 148 books!

(Note: You have to register for a free account on the Oxford website.)

Graded readers are short books written especially for intermediate English learners, with easier vocabulary and interesting stories.

I highly recommend everyone who reads this blog try these graded readers. They are written at different levels, so you can find one that’s right for you.

I also recommend that you look for books where you can understand at least 90% of the words on the page.

We all need to keep busy during these times of  COVID 19/coronavirus. Why not improve your English?

~Jeff

P.S. You can also check out (take a look at) our Unlimited English Membership, with 1800+ lessons on Daily and Cultural English.

P.P.S. Like this short English lesson? Get a FREE sample lesson (no money needed) – SIGN UP BELOW!

Just fill out the form below and we’ll send a FREE lesson to try!

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in How to Learn English, Life in the United States | Comments Off on English at Home: Some Ideas for You and Your Children

How Do You Deal With Stress? Here’s What I Do

Many of us are feeling stress right now because of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Stress is feeling worried, nervous, and anxious about something.

Aside from the obvious threat of the coronavirus itself, perhaps you’re feeling stressed because your spouse (husband or wife) or children are home with you 24/7 (all the time; 24 hours/7 days a week).

Or perhaps you feel cooped up (forced to be inside).

Maybe, like me, you’re tired of (no longer want) your own cooking.

A lot of people are turning to (deciding to do) exercise to reduce or lower stress.

Here in Los Angeles, gyms (fitness centers) are closed and community sports teams aren’t playing. But some people are still going jogging (running slowly and for a long distance), while maintaining (keeping) social distancing (staying away from other people).

A lot of people, however, are exercising at home.

If you look at popular online stores like Amazon.com, you’ll see that a lot of at-home gym equipment is sold out (there’s no more to sell) or temporarily unavailable.

I’m a member of a gym, but it’s closed right now. Instead, I’ve been trying to exercise by using some old gym equipment in a make-shift (temporary and not perfect) gym in my garage.

I’ve been trying to do weightlifting (lifting heavy objects to build strength) without the proper dumbbells (a short bar with weights on each end that you hold, one in each hand) and barbells (a long bar with flat, round weights attached to the ends).

It’s been only a mild (small) success. But I’m very lucky that I’m healthy enough to even exercise at all.

Maybe the best way to relieve (lessen) your stress is to just focus on improving your English?

Learn how we talk about stress in English by taking a look at Daily English 319: Being Under Stress.

And learn the difference between the terms “stress” and “pressure” in Culture English 239.

Stay healthy!

Jeff

Photo: Yes, that’s me exercising, obviously (not).

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay
Posted in Life in the United States | Comments Off on How Do You Deal With Stress? Here’s What I Do

Working (and Zooming) From Home

Many of you are probably stuck in (unable to leave) your house, and you may have to do your work from home.

Now, many people think that working from home sounds like a great idea. But the reality (what actually happens) is sometimes far from (very different than) the dream (what one thinks and hopes will happen).

There are many problems with home offices that make it difficult, inconvenient (not easy or nice), or uncomfortable (physically awkward) to work from home.

Many home offices are simply too small. Most large areas in people’s homes are used for living areas (places for the family to spend time together) and bedrooms.

Telecommuters (people who work from home) often have to cram (fit something into a small space) their desk into the corner of a room that is used for one or more other things.

Even when people do have enough space for a home office, the room is often inadequate (not good enough) in some other way.

One thing we have all learned about during this COVID-19 crisis is videoconferencing, using software such as Skype or Zoom.

The fun thing is that you can now see the inside of your co-workers’ houses!

It also means that you don’t really have to wear pants, since you only see the top half of your body on the video screen (see photo).

Most home offices aren’t sound-proof (not allowing sound to cross the walls, ceiling, and floor), either.

That means those working from home hear the sounds of children, television, musical instruments, and (worst of all) . . . cats.

Let’s hope this ends soon!

Jeff

P.S. We talk more about working from home in our Daily English 544 – Working from a Home Office here.

P.P.S. Like this short English lesson? Get a FREE sample lesson (no money needed) – SIGN UP BELOW!

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What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Life in the United States | Comments Off on Working (and Zooming) From Home

A Guide to Pandemic English

I’ve been trying to keep my mind off of (not think about) the coronavirus pandemic (wide-spreading of a disease). So last week I decided to learn how to bake.

It was a disaster (very bad event).

I tried making two kinds of desserts (sweet things eaten after main meal). They tasted awful (terrible, bad).

I then realized that I should probably stick to (continue doing) what I know – teaching English. So I wrote a little “guide” to “pandemic English” you may be seeing in the news.

SOCIAL DISTANCING: To keep yourself away from other people as much as you can.

Here in the U.S., people are being told to stay at least 6 feet (about 2 meters) from other people on the street, in a store, etc. Of course, the best social distancing is to stay at home, which is what I’m doing.

COVID-19/CORNAVIRUS: These are the same thing, used to describe the virus itself.

HAND SANITIZER: This is a special liquid that helps keep your hands clean when you can’t wash them.

Health experts tell people to wash their hands with soap and water thoroughly (completely), at least 20 seconds, which is better than using sanitizer. But if you are out and away from a bathroom, then hand sanitizer is the next best thing (the second best thing).

QUARANTINE: To be placed apart from everyone else, especially if you have a disease.

Some governments are quarantining cities or areas, not allowing anyone in or out.

SELF-ISOLATE: Similar to quarantine, this means to stay away from other people, but usually does not involve a government order or law.

SHELTER IN PLACE: These means not to leave where you are right now (home), to NOT go anywhere unless it is necessary.

Shelter-in-place, self-isolation, and quarantining all basically look the same for most people.

FLATTEN THE CURVE: To reduce the number of people getting infected and dying from the coronavirus.

The idea is that if we do things like wash our hands, self-isolate, wear a mask, etc., we will prevent having too many sick people for the hospitals to help.

So stay safe wherever you are, and maybe try learn a new skill, like how to bake. I’m sure you’ll do better than I did!

~Jeff

P.S. The photo is of the world’s worst scones (a British sweet biscuit), made by me. They were so bad I had to throw them all away in the trash (really!).

P.P.S. Looking for a good way to spend your time at home? Try improving your English with our Unlimited English Membership: https://tv.eslpod.com

P.P.P.S. Like this short English lesson? Get a FREE sample lesson (no money needed) – SIGN UP BELOW!

Just fill out the form below and we’ll send a FREE lesson to try!

We hate spam, too! We will never sell, rent, or give your information to anyone – ever!

What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on A Guide to Pandemic English

What Does “To Give Notice” At Your Job Mean?

Learn how and when we use the expression, “to give notice,” in this short video by ESLPod.com.

Learn more job-related vocabulary in our Daily English lesson 44 – Hiring for a Job.

Learn more about our Unlimited English membership, with access to more than 1800 lessons, here.

~Jeff

P.S. Like this short English lesson? Get a FREE sample lesson (no money needed) – SIGN UP BELOW!

Just fill out the form below and we’ll send a FREE lesson to try!

We hate spam, too! We will never sell, rent, or give your information to anyone – ever!

What Will I Learn in My Free Lesson?

Here is just a small part of what you’re going to learn in this free lesson:

  • What “take a rain check” means and how to use it in a conversation . . .
  • The difference between a “recluse” and a “busybody” . . .
  • Why “to fend OFF” means something from “to fend FOR” . . .
  • What it means to “take a rain check,” “keep to yourself,” and “to appoint (someone)” . . .
  • What a social secretary is . . .
  • The best way to use “to sort out” and “to turn down” . . .
  • How to use phrasal verbs like “to settle in” and “to settle down” (they’re not the same!) . . .
Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on What Does “To Give Notice” At Your Job Mean?

We All Need a Little Laughter in These Difficult Times

All of us at ESLPod.com hope that you and your loved ones (the people you love) are healthy and safe during these difficult times of the coronavirus.

We take the current threat (danger) very seriously. But if you’re like me, you’re stuck at home (can’t go out) and looking for ways to keep busy, especially something to take my mind off of our current troubles.

So today we’re offering a gift to you: a complete Daily English lesson from our collection. It’s our way of thanking you for your support.

We would not be here without you, our wonderful fans and members!

Our gift to you is Daily English 721 – A Widespread Epidemic. It contains some useful vocabulary to understand news in English about this serious topic.

We hope it will help you pass the time more quickly as we all self-isolate (stay away from other people).

Be safe!

~ Jeff + Lucy

P.S. This lesson is part of the 1800+ lessons we offer with our Unlimited English membership.

 

 

Posted in Language & Terms | Comments Off on We All Need a Little Laughter in These Difficult Times