Podcasts This Week (March 5, 2012)

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ESL Podcast 770 – Joining a Tour

In the Learning Guide: Get a full transcript (written version of every word you hear), vocabulary list and sample sentences, and comprehension questions.
In “What Else Does it Mean,” learn the other meanings of “to take in” and “rave.”
In the “Culture Note,” learn about “Popular Family Vacation Destinations.”
U.S. News and World Report, a national newspaper, has created a list of the 15 best family vacation “destinations” (places to go) in the United States. Here are some…” – READ MORE in the Learning Guide

English Cafe 336

Topics: Ask an American – Self-publishing; intrinsic versus native versus innate versus congenital; recently versus currently; soccer

In the Learning Guide:  Get a full transcript (written version of every word you hear).
In “What Insiders Know,” you will read about “Self-Published Bestsellers.”
“Most self-published books never find a large audience. They tend to be written for a “niche” (a small group of people with specific characteristics) audience. However, some “classics” (books that are very well known and respected) with a very large audience were actually self-published…” – READ MORE in the Learning Guide

ESL Podcast 771 – Commuting by Train

In the Learning Guide: Get a full transcript (written version of every word you hear), vocabulary list and sample sentences, and comprehension questions.
In “What Else Does it Mean,” learn the other meanings of “platform” and “underway.”
In the “Culture Note,” learn about “Commercial Rail Systems in the United States.”
“There are many commuter “rail” (with trains or train-like vehicles that travel on metal tracks attached to the ground) systems in the United States. The “commuter rail systems” travel between major cities…” – READ MORE in the Learning Guide

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6 Responses to Podcasts This Week (March 5, 2012)

  1. Myo ko ko says:

    Hi, ESL friends here,
    This is Myo ko ko from beautiful, home sweet home, Myanmar. (Lest you forget me! 😉 )
    Have you ever heard of my nation, the golden land before?…… Oh, Great! Thanks for answering.:)

    It’s my great pleasure to be here again.
    And you know why I’m here for today?….Oh, yeah, you’ve got that right!
    Yup, I’m here to send my sincere but big and special “Thanks” to my great teachers for their new podcasts on this week.
    Of course, I and you have heard of what they say:””Thank You” is never unnecessary,” haven’t we?
    If so, why not you also join me in acknowledging our great teachers’ great work? …You will??!
    OK, Let’s get ready. Here is countdown… Ready….Set….Go!


    Well, today, I allocate some of my spare time for downloading great ESL podcasts.
    And Needless to say, meanwhile, I’ll be killing my time here on this lovely blog, for I also wanna practice my writing skill a little bit.

    Well, let me think about a topic to bring on here…. uh…OK,

    Today I’m gonna talk about the way how I read my ESL friends’ comments here. Remember? I’ve told you that I read all of ESL friends’ comments on this blog.
    Yeah, in addition to our teachers’ great blog posts here, my ESL friends’ (your!) comments here are also very good English lessons for me to learn and to pick up…(What’s else!)… well…this global language, English! 😉

    Hmm…. it isn’t that exact if I say that I ‘just read’ your comments! Well, to be more precise, and if you can believe it, I also check out the grammatical structures, the expressions “you” use in your comments, which I think helps me better acquire this language, English! That is…., not I just read your comments, but I also “analyze” them. Got confused?
    OK, let me give you a demonstration of it OR you can assume that I’m sharing with all of you a way that I use to pick up “English” from “your comments.”

    Here I’m reading one of Peter’s comments.
    [Hey, Peter, please, let me use one of your comments on Jeff’s post a few days ago:”Leading Economic Indicators: Longer Skirts, Empty Tunnels, and Uglier Waitresses”, will ya?]
    All right, now let’s take a look at Peter’s comment. He wrote:

    ……..The leading indicater,I guess, is the sharp decline in the number of jobs in the past few years……..

    [Here is my process of analyzing his lines or words.]
    [In above quote, he(Peter) used the expression “sharp decline”,that I understand it, meaning “very sudden and deep decrease in amount of something,” in this case, the number of jobs.
    And if I wish, I can also re-write the time phrase he used. That is, “in the past few years” into “over the past couple of years.”]

    ……The job market has been shrinking since forever which means more people out of jobs leading to less general spending power.
    Less spending power effects directly the businesses in clothing ,food ,entertainment industry and so on………

    [By the phrase “job market” in the sentence I think he meant that there are less and less “job openings” or “job vacancies” available for those who want to have a job.
    OR maybe he wanted to say that employers are hiring employees less and less than before. And I assume that “spending power” is another word for “buying power”(of people) to some extent.
    In the second line in the above quote, I can learn a grammar mistake. Peter used “effects” as a “verb.” In fact, “effect” is a “noun.” The verb form is “to affect.”
    Therefore, The sentence in the above quote should be “Less spending power “affects” directly……” ]

    ……..Overally People make less money ,so they start cutting corners. The first thing business owner usualky do to cop with the economy pressure is to cut down the number of employers who work for them. The result would be more people out of jobs and more reduction on spending power………..

    [In this above quote, I can learn the expression “to cut corners” meaning “to spend less money” especially because one is ,well, in a tight corner financially.
    And another notable phrase Peter used is “to cop with.” Well, frankly, I don’t know this phrase that well. But I think it has the same meaning as “to cope with.”
    From his lines, “business owners are “cutting down” (reducing) the number of “employers” who work for them”. I can re-write: “business owners are “downsizing” their businesses.”
    I also note that Peter didn’t write that “employees” are getting fired. I think he wanted to put emphasis on the situation of the higher part (of a company or business.)]

    ……..Another leading indicator ,I personally think ,Is an notably increase in the number of empty resturants in meal rush hours (good one,just made up:)) in the evening and afternoon.
    If you look more closely ,you notice that resturants that used to packed ,now are almost empty of customers. Seems like ,nowadays more and more people recline to spend more time in the kitchen cooking than dining out. Another leading indicator that I can think of is an increae in the number of people at Coffe houses………

    [Well, in this above quote, he said he used his own made-up phrase,”meal rush hours.” I figure it out that that term doesn’t mean the “meals” that we have during “rush hours.”
    But it, I think, refers to the busy time for a restaurant with lots of customers coming in to have meals. The peak hours of a restaurant, if we will.
    I also learn that we can say that “a restaurant is packed” when it is almost full of customers or simply when it’s over-crowed. As you can see, Peter did use the word “pack” in this way.
    And the next expression that Perter used is “recline to” that I thought could be replaced by ” tend to.” ]

    ……..My logic says that at the time of ecomomy melt down ,people’s money power takes a dive nose and decline drastically, fonancially ,they go down ,
    still they feel the need for fun and socializing. So,what do they do ? It is simple ,they start looking for alternatives that provides them with some fun ,and hang out time.
    As a way of letting some steam off in order to to relax and wind down, A getaway trip from all the hubbub and the host of Everday’s hocous-pocus in terms of economy,terrorism and so on………

    [Well, If I get to brainstorm to re-write the very first sentence of the above quote, I’ll get:”My reasoning says that at the time of recession, people don’t earn that much money and so they don’t have enough money in their hands to spend on whatever they want.” Well, another remarkable phrases that Peter came up with here are “to steam off” and two expressions that sound almost the same meaning: “to relax” and “to wind down.” And if I’m very serious about English, I can also find out the usage of the phrase “in terms of” in above quote, too.]

    ……But let’s not forget the fact that they don’t have the same amount of money to burn through( good one,just made up:)) So ,as a lasr resort they swurm to coffee houses like TimHorton’s.
    The same applies with Bars. Economy goes down you see more people in coffee houses and bars than resturants……..

    [In this above quote, I figure out that his made-up phrase “to burn through”,by his “sense”, carries the meaning of “to spend so much on something.” And then I find out two (specific!) typos:”lasr” and “swurm.” If corrected, I get “last resort” meaning sort of “final option.” But I’m not that sure about the latter, “swurm.” If I guess, it could be past participle of either verb: “swim” and “swing.” Both of them could be here, in this context I think. And the next sentence he wrote “The same applies with Bars” that I interpret it is “The same situation is happening with the bars.”]

    …….To sum up,it is like butterfly effects . The economy turndown always intrigued a chain of reactions that effects every living entity in this planet.
    Even let’s get less treat because their owner prefer to eat themselves first:)))………

    [In this final quote, I find out the expression “to sum up” meaning “to summarize” that in turn means “to put the main ideas into few words,” or perhaps also ” to wrap up.”
    When I read the phrase “butterfly effects” in Peter’s comment, I thought that I already know the meaning of it pretty well, so I didn’t need to look it up in the dictionary.
    You know I’m a science guy. i.e. I’m very interested in science. In fact, this phrase “butterfly effects” is a word that comes from “Chaos Theory.”
    And it came out from the notion that a butterfly fluttering in Rio de Janeiro could change the weather in Chicago.
    That is, a knock that I make on my door could cause a big storm at another part of the globe!!
    (I think, one of our ESL friends, Sergio, has more about this theory! Right, Sergio? (if you are reading my blah blah, of course! 😉 ))
    Oh, where are we?! Oh, yeah, If I re-write the sentence that follows in the above quote, I thought I’ll get: “The economy downturn has always triggered a series of reactions that “affects” every living ……”
    And also, what if I re-write Peter’s last line like this: “Even let’s get treated less because their……” ?? Can its meaning change notably?? ]

    OK, fellow colleagues,
    That is exactly what I do with your comments.
    One thing for sure is, I never take any of your comments for granted!
    And a word to a wise,
    If you do more or less the way I do, you’ll get the most out of a comment (as far as your English acquisition is concerned!) Believe you me!

    Well, finally, …. my special thanks to great teacher Jeff, Warren, and Lucy. Thanks to them, I can write like this,
    And really, really sorry for this lengthy comment that makes you bored to death! 😉
    But you know? I’m dropping “something” here to contribute this lovely very blog.
    Well, it’s about time to stop. Bye for now!

  2. sergio says:

    Dear Myo ko ko,
    I do, I read your hugely “short” post… My congratulation for your skills in writing in English… I’m really overwhelmed by how much you can write fluently and quickly I guess…
    I would like to answer you only about one… two… or perhaps three things…
    First, of course I know your country: we call it BIRMANIA… But, despite I like geography I know only the capital city, some about politic troubles – as in every country all around the world – and er… that’s enough, sorry!
    Secondly, you refferred correctly about the butterfly and the Caos Theory, which has if I remember right 30 o more years. In any case I would suggest you: don’t consider the economic rules like something assiomatic: another world would be possible! As I see it, it’s fake that we cannot change nothing in Italy because in Myanmar they don’t agree. Another economy is possible (read Serge Latouche, for ex., or an Indian woman researcher I don’t remember the name…).
    Last but not least, I don’t know if you know I’m 56 and I’m studying English a bit but every day because… I don’t know really why. I use to say: to live – and die – better… However that isn’t the matter… I would like to ask you if you too studying a new tongue, not now but at the beginning, felt something like a child who’s learning his own language… It’s really weird and amazing in the same time hearing sometimes my brain thinking in… English!
    My best regards Myo ko ko and don’t be afraid to give me a feedback with my mistakes.

  3. emiliano says:

    Impressive, Myo ko Ko.
    I have not words, such a great work and nearly to be perfect.

    I think you spend a lot of time studying English, that is for me
    the only right explanation.
    Even so, your improvement is amazing, sure Jeff and Lucy
    have to be proud about your good level.

    Please, Myo Ko Ko …may you correct my English too, it shall
    be quite good for me.
    Thank you.

    An astonished emiliano

  4. Peter says:

    Dear Mayo,
    Seems like there is some Peter bashing going on here.
    Please Give me some credit here, I know the difference between effect and affect. In fact , these differences between nons and the relevant verbs are the first thing teaches go through with their students.But ,I really appriciate that you brough it to my attention. I will definitely consider it in my next entery.

    I like it my friend.
    I like it how you broke down my comment.
    I appriciate you taking the time to go through my gibberish.
    it is very nice of you.I will consider your notes on my comments.
    But,some times typo errors happen here or there,sorry for that. It is all my fault. I always put down my thoughts fast and never go over them.I mean never review them.
    I m incorrigible that way.:))
    Well, I m a student entitled to make mistakes. After all, mistake make us who we are.

    I like your piece ,
    Again, Thank you for the time and the attention


  5. Betty says:

    I am very impressed by Myo Ko Ko’s message above.

    No, it is not a message. It is an English lecture.

    According to my Microsoft Word ‘Word Count’, there was 1721 words in Myo Ko Ko’s message.

    Myo Ko Ko you have said that you are a science guy, that is, you are very interested in science.

    Am I right to say that you are more interested in English than science now?

    Jeff, Lucy and Warren have successfully produced an English genius for this world.

    Like William Shakespeare of England, your English has captures many people’s heart.

    I am not a young man like you and I do not have so much time and energy to write so much like you.

    But I want to say something I have always wanted to say here but did not get round to it.

    For all of us who are learning English as a second language, there is something to be celebrated.

    If you can spare a minute to google “Learn a second language can boost your brainpower”, you will find lots and lots of scientific evidence about how we can benefit from a second language.

    According to The Franklin Institute Resources for Science Learning website:

    “Your brain is a thinking organ that learns and grows by interacting with the world through perception and action. Mental stimulation improves brain function and actually protects against cognitive decline, as does physical exercise.

    The human brain is able to continually adapt and rewire itself. Even in old age, it can grow new neurons. Severe mental decline is usually caused by disease, whereas most age-related losses in memory or motor skills simply result from inactivity and a lack of mental exercise and stimulation. In other words, use it or lose it”.

    Finally, I would leave it to Myo Ko Ko and Sergio the science guys to tell us whether the Franklin Institute Resources for Science Learning website has been telling us the truth.

    Thank you Jeff, Lucy, Warren, and the whole ESLPOD.com team; thank you all our blog friends here, you have helped me maintain mental exercise.

    Best Regards

    Betty 🙂

  6. emiliano says:

    Hi Betty, well done.

    More or less I think the same like you, our friend Myo ko ko is a good example of how a person could
    get a high level of English or of another science just studying hard, constantly and doing things in the right way.
    Peter take it in the easy way, I do think Myo ko ko is pointing all of us the right form of writing and giving all of us some rules about our style either.
    You Peter always have a high level of English using new words that usually some of us don´t know what their meaning are, may be that is the reason Myo has taken you post. Mine is so easy that is not a good example to take it.
    Is it not so, Myo Ko Ko?. Well, I think so and it has been a good lesson for all of us.
    As Betty said it is nearly a lecture, congratulations my friend.

    I need to read the post four times to get all its deep knowledge, also having a look to the dictionary either.
    We all need more Myo Ko Kos in the blog who have enough time and patience to correct all our big mistakes.

    Hi Betty, how is the new flat?
    Do you like it?
    My best from Madrid, we miss you a lot.


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