Are You Smarter Than a 12th Grader?

Coal_miner's_child_in_grade_school._Lejunior,_Harlan_County,_Kentucky._-_NARA_-_541367There was a game show (a competition on television for money) a few years ago called “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?” (a fifth grader is a student in grade five, about eleven years old). In the game, adults would try to answer questions taken from the lessons of elementary school (grades one through six) students. If you got an answer wrong, you had to say, “I am not smarter than a 5th grader!”

The game became so popular that other countries (more than 50!) created similar shows, some of which are still on the air (being shown on television).

Today’s post is not about questions for fifth graders, but for those who are about to go to college.

In the U.S., students who want to attend (go to; be a student at) a university usually have to write a short essay about some topic in order to demonstrate that they know how to write well in English.  I thought it would be fun to share some of the topics high school seniors (twelfth graders) have to answer when applying to many U.S. colleges.

The following writing prompts (topics for writing an essay, usually for an exam or application) are among the most popular used by American colleges. Read each question and think about what your answer might be:

-Some students have a background or story that is so central (important) to their identity (who they see themselves as) that they believe their application would be incomplete (not finished) without it. If this sounds like (appears to be) you, then please share (tell us) your story.

-Recount (tell us the story of) an incident (event; situation) or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?

-Reflect (think about) a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted (caused) you to act (do it)? Would you make that same decision again?

-Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly (completely) content (happy; satisfied). What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful (important; significant) to you?

-Discuss an accomplishment (something you’ve done) or event, formal or informal, that marked (indicated) your transition (change) from childhood (being a child) to adulthood (being an adult) within your culture, community, or family.

See if you can answer one of these questions (in English!), then tell us about how you answered in the comments below.


Photo credit: Student in Kentucky, 1946, Wikipedia PD



This entry was posted in Life in the United States, Television and Movies. Bookmark the permalink.

37 Responses to Are You Smarter Than a 12th Grader?

  1. Dan says:


    Wow! this one is going to be hard, a real challenge.
    Since I like semplicicy I’ll try to keep it simple.


    I am not sure whether my marriage was a failure or not, the fact is it ended up with a divorce.
    I would say it was an expirience. I would not even look at it as negative or positive, just an expirience.

    How that affected me, well..I see women under a different light now, really, really differently.
    I can’t express how, ’cause we have to keep the blog clean and my point of view about women necessitates lots of cursing/blasphemy.

    Lessons learnt…let me see…..DO NOT GET MARRIED AGAIN!. As simple as that.

    How did I do Prof?

    Taking into consideration that I dropped out of school 26 years ago, and this week I am working the night shift, it’s not that bad.

    Thank you guys… looking forward to read all of you

  2. Dan says:


    Do not get me wrong, I do not hate women. I do not hate anyone.


  3. Lassana says:

    Hi Everybody !

    Thanks for this topic, that allow to remember me different think about my childhood.

    I think it’s a good idea to for the students to write something about a topic if they want to attend a university.

    The first think which comes in my mind is when i learned to ride a bike, I was 11 years. It was a strong expérience. I had learned alone, it was difficult at first, because I had to coordinate all movements. Then one day I was able to keep my balance.

    It was great and fantastic, I knew ride a bike !

    My bad expérience is come a few times after that I knew ride a bike. I was 12 years, when I do an accident with a car. Fortunatly it was not serious, just few injuries.

    The environnement where I am happy is when my girlfriend, my daughter and I are walking in a park, when we going to the restaurant together.

    An event that marked me is when I was 15 years. I do a trip for the summer holidays. It was the first time that I went in the country where I was born, called Mali. It was a very interesting expérience, I shared many, many things with my family and many people.

    I learned many things about my second culture, the joy living of people, courage, traditions, solidarity and especially to know my better.

    I returned in France with full memories !!!

    See you soon !

  4. parviz says:

    Hi every body,
    Nice topic for a long chat.
    But it seems like I am the youngest of you, that means less experience, no girlfriend, no wife, and no daughter.
    I am Just kidding.
    I need time to think about these topics. cause, I need to take the TOEFL Test, which has two writing prompts, SO this post would give me a little practice.
    I will be back soon, Not in a blink of eye, but with a good essay (I hope so).

  5. emiliano says:

    Good morning dear friends of the ESL Blog.
    Today is Wednesdaythe fourth day of the week; third day of the working week.

    Let´s go to see the name´s origin of the Word:
    Word Origin & History
    O.E. Wodnesdæg “Woden’s day,” a Gmc. loan-translation of L. dies Mercurii “day of Mercury” (cf. O.N. Oðinsdagr, Swed. Onsdag, O.Fris.
    Wonsdei, M.Du. Wudensdach). For Woden, see Odin. Contracted pronunciation is recorded from 15c. The Odin-based name is missing in
    Ger. (mittwoch, from O.H.G. mittwocha, lit. “mid-week”), probably by infl. of Gothic, which seems to have adopted a pure ecclesiastical
    (i.e. non-astrological) week from Gk. missionaries. The Gothic model also seems to be the source of Pol. sroda,
    Rus. sreda “Wednesday,” lit. “middle”.

    So in Latin today is Mercury´s Day the ancient Roman god who served as messenger of the gods and was also the god of commerce, thievery,
    eloquence, and science, identified with the Greek god Hermes.

    I wish all of you a good Mercury´s Day after so many explanations.
    There is a new Jeff´s Post, that is very good something to talk about, let´s go.

    Humm, quite interesting topic Jeff, I am going to think abou it.

    Wish you a good day.


  6. Peter says:

    Hi chief,
    I understand that you ask me to regale you with a story that effected my very being in a destructive manner. An incident rather event that failed me and left me with nothing but a nagging regret.
    Well, I don’t know how to start and where to start as you know that my life is full of regrets. Whatever I have done in my life ended up to be an abject failure.
    But ,there is this life-altering incident that changed me in every way possible and left me hanging in disbelief and agony,a story that sounds like more of a tale than a true event.
    As I recollect ,i was still at college when this tragic , horrendous event shook the very foundation of my life. Back in the day ,My life was a constant juggling act ,copping with college studies ,moon lighting jobs ,and social hang-outs.
    On week days , I would study at School till 7 pm. Then , I would scoot across the town to get to my job in time enough to throw on my uniform and get behind the concierge desk ,situated right at the full-length glassed entrance doors of the building, sharp at 8pm .yes, your guess is absolutely right !!. I was a security guard in a commercial building with about 2000 residence in total. I was the first point of contact in any case of emergency situations ranging from fire to burglary.
    My shift started at 8 pm and ended at 4 am. I m telling you It was brutal. All I did during the 8 hours was a constant uphill battle to stay alert rather awake
    One wendsday night , if I remember correctly ,I was ,as usual, dozing off at the desk that all of sudden I startled to a banging sound. It was a bunch of police officers knocking hard on the entrance door.
    I buzzed them in while I was still half-sleep. They started throwing at me tons of questions about some drug trafficking occurring at the premises as we spoke.
    Needs less to say , that I was scared to death. I didn’t know what to say . I was sleep almost the whole time for God’s sake.
    The chief officer practically fork-lifted me out of the desk into the air and I landed luckily on my feet somewhere on the main lobby:))
    Man,he was huge, a well-built guy almost 6.4 inch tall.
    He started checking the footage on the monitors that save images relayed from the cameras installed inside and outside of the premises.
    Yes ,I was in a big trouble. One of the footage was showing two guys in the dark behind the dumpster at the decking area were trading something. And ,I had missed the entire thing. 10 minutes after ,there was a ransack by special unit in one of the unit on the 20th floor.
    As it turns out ,that unit was practically a meth lab, and that police had been staking out the unit for God knows how long. Well ,needless to say that I was arrested by the narc unit accusing of being an accomplice to the crime. Well,nobody believed that I was simply asleep the entire time of this happening. They assumed that I turned a blind eye on the whole thing,for I made a deal with the drug dealers.
    I was behind the bars for a good one week before I exonerated of all charges.
    It was the most horrific story of my life. Let me tell you guys ,being in jail even temporarily is no picnic. Luckily , I didn’t get any criminal record. Lucky me , My record didn’t get blemished of any Wong doings.
    It was just a whole nightmare that turned out to be real. Man,I was just in the wrong place ,at the wrong time
    The lesson I got from the mishap is :
    never ever work as a security guard. Never ever run a graveyard shift
    And the most important of all ,Never ever get into a physical fight with a police officer :)))

    P.S. Sorry for the belated comment , I was crazy busy yesterday. I know ,you didn’t miss me. Still…
    I bet Jeff celebrated last night ,thinking he eventually get rid of me.
    Well,not yet pall ,still a lot there is to learn;)

  7. emiliano says:

    A good exercise to attend a universty it is just that, to write an essay about a topic may be the perfect way to calibrate the status of
    a student but also of another person.
    I could remember that writting a essay was the most important exam that was made to be admited in the Bank I worked, but also
    it was made in the exam to increase the grade of the employee one we were working in the Bank.
    Knowing how to express oneself in our own language it is good messurement of the culture a student has, so I agree with the terms
    of univesities exams.

    I have few short bad experiences and to me it is hard to remember some of them. I could remember one when my daughter Eva went
    throw the glass of a terrace and break it with her head. She was severely injured on her head and lost like a river of blood on her
    face. I was our first day on hollidays, new flat for the family, rent for a month close near the beach. The girls were with me and I was
    doing some little works to fit the tv.and Eva wanted to go out the terrace without seeing the door was closed, glasse were so clean
    that seems air intead of glass, the poor Eva breaked the glass door with her head and I was under shock seeing her bleeding so
    profusely and started to shout. I put immediately an humid towel round her head, take the child on my arms and Cuca and me went
    to urgencies with the car. The other two childs remained at the flat, and once in urgencies I left the car in the middle of the street
    with the keys and the motor on.
    She had a bed injure, a long break in her head that needed several stitching of suture, ten or more, and she cried so much that we needed
    to calm and hold her while the doctor was doing that.
    It was really an horrible short momento for me like father and person.

    Knowing Cuca was the point where I changed my mind of going out from this country and decided to stay here with her.

    The best place to be in peace feeling really good it is just close to the seas looking the wages, the colours of wáter, and the sky, That´s make
    me feel happy.

    I felt like and adult when my first daughter Eva was born, Cuca nearly died, another very bad moment, but I have my first daughter on my
    arms. Everything changed since that momento, Cuca was with me again, alive, and I was a father.

    Thanks Jeff, a lot of things to remember.


  8. Dan says:

    Hi everyone,

    Wow… reading myself It makes me more persuaded that I suck.
    There is definetly room for improvement there..I need to be working harder.

    By the way, I was thinking about that transition we are supposed to make from childhood to adulthood.
    I am not sure I did that. Under many aspects I am still a kid, but I guess that it’s normal, I mean who isn’t.

    I was born a worker. I enjoy working.
    I like DIY and look at how things are made. That makes me feel confortable/satisfied.
    Just today I finished a painting job for my German neighbor, nothing important, just the balcony’s rail.
    I asking little money ‘cuase I love doing that kind of jobs and Helping people out. That gives satisfaction more than everything.
    The money I am asking it’s just not to feel them they own me something, you know, that bad feeling when you are in debt with someone.
    I am proud of myself, the job came out well, and now every time I pass by I think -I did that-.

    Thanks guys, I am reading you’ all.

  9. Dan says:

    Just a question for ESL Team I have been asking myself from quite a while:

    Is there actually someone reading all my crap and posting it, or there is some kind of software that just look for cursing and stuff?

    I am asking that ’cause if there is a human reading it I feel sorry for you man. Thank you!

    I used the term “crap” because I keep hearing it on tv and radio. I think it is more acceptable than s**t.


  10. Peter says:

    Well ,I attended colleges here. I did ask to write an essay within an allocated time.
    But ,the topics are mostly about the colleges itself and the recent hot global news or local news.
    Nowadays , the topics that prospective students get are mostly revolving global warming ,and economy crises and some other topics.
    Back in the days ,was the same. we usually had options. We were presented with three different topics and it was up to us to select one and wrote an essay about it
    One of the topics was always too complicated and difficult which left us with two topics to choose from
    As I said , one of the topics was usually related to college ,and high schools , mostly comparison essays

    The college I attended first was a community college. There was an proficiency exam for it. The exam was consisted of three or 4 parts
    Punctuation, comprehension , grammar and one long essay.
    I vividly remember we had one hour to write a three-page long essay. The trick was to write the essay with pencil not pen.
    Because ,we were under a lot of pressure to finish the essay on time. Most of the times we didn’t even get a chance to review what we had written. So , we had to think snd write very fast that naturally increased the risk of us making silly mistakes including spelling mistakes.
    Let me tell you that back them spelling mistakes cost us marks. Not just spelling mistakes,but punctuation , flow ,consistency and so on.
    We wrote down the entire essay with pencil so once we made mistakes we could erase it instead of cross it. U know , it was imperative that you deliver a neat finished essay not a messy one.
    I m telling you ,it was challenging.
    You have to think on your feet, not a moment to loose.
    University was almost the same. I mean for university I took TOFEL exam which I was supposed to write an essay at the end about the given topic. But , the essay was almost one page long done on the computer and the allocated time for it was 20 minutes.
    It was brutal man.

    See ya,

  11. parviz says:

    Hi everybody,
    The most difficult part of an essay is the beginning. I am trying to come up with some worthy words, but mind just keeps coming up blank.
    does it mean that I can’t write well, and am going to fail the essay. Did you feel the like the first time you started writing. before I sit behind my laptop, there tons of words and Ideas flying in my head, but by the time I get myself to sit and write something, the words seems to scape my mind.
    By the way, reading your COMMENTS helps me COPE WITH my problem. IT seems KEEP writing even though BAD is the only WAY towards becoming a GOOD write.

    I really like My Job and My office.
    Growing up as a child I would always see myself teaching people, but I had no Idea I would become A Personal Development Coach. It wasn’t easy for me to get to the place where I am know. But I know it all started with An accident. I run my company in very small office, where I meet my clients and students. There is a big window at my right hand opens to the city. from that angel I can see the top of the mountains 5 to 6 miles away. I have the privilege to watch the sun rise, The clear blue sky of the city, viewing the flying airplanes above the city in the sky coming back and forth to take passengers to their destinations. The Most fascinating is Being with ESL podcast members.

    I wouldn’t have this office, If I hadn’t dared to meet that Girl.
    Back in 2007 When I was just a college student doing my master’s degree courses in genetics. I met a very nice, and gorgeous girl. By the time She was working for a travel agent company at the other side of the street right across from the entrance gate to the university. She was diligent in her Job. And I wanted to got her attention. It was not an easy thing to do, heart beating, sweating, stuttering got on the way, every time I wanted to talk to her. I was her client, sometimes I might buy train or airline tickets, the reason was to get close to her.
    By any means I got myself a chance to talk to her. After a while I asked her for a date. ON my good luck she refused, excusing that she would only date a person who may get down to marriage.
    I was poor, so I decided to get a job, I also wanted a decent job, because I had done many GOD damned Jobs, before. So I didn’t want to make a Hell of my life again.
    Guss what, The night before I defend my THESIS,I left school, and started to self-study English. Then I started to Teach English. Latter I started my own style of teaching. Although, It took my nearly a year to get myself on track, I started to love my Job. After a year, I was back , only to find out that the Girl I loved had married to another person, under the pressure of her father.

    I became really sad, and depressed. I recognized myself a complete failure. Suddenly, A generous man appeared from no where, and started to teach me about how to control myself. Then he introduced me to The Movie SECRET and gave me several books. I started to read. I read many books about psychology, psychiatry and self-help books about The Mind. I read books from every eminent in this industry. And I have never stopped reading.

    Now I am here In the place that I have ever loved to be, helping people, Along with coaching English.

    Unfortunately, I was told that the Girl I loved had suffered depression. I didn’t know why and how serious was her situation. I didn’t see her again.

    She is certainly on my prayer. And I owe my life to her after all.

    Yeah, this is the story of parviz,
    Thank you guys, I can’t wait to read your comments,

  12. Tania says:

    Hi! Dear Jeff, thank you for the photo posted.
    The fair boy looks like someone from my family. Unfortunately this little boy does not have shoes.
    But he seems to be very eager.

    Be sure, today nobody is smarter than a 12th grader.
    They have their own vocabulary inspired from the cartoons, their heroes, cars, games, books…
    And I know nothing about all these…

    And the most painful…a kid comes to you to solve him a maths problem.
    You must know his solving method. If not…well, you can’t help a kid at his maths.

  13. Tania says:

    We have many jokes on this topic.

  14. Tania says:

    Dear Emiliano, thank you for your Word Origin & History.
    For Wednesday , we use the latin word Miercuri instead of Mercury.

    Dear Dan, be sure we read with much pleasure every comment. We learn a lot from all comments.

    Dear Peter, thank you for sharing with us your sad experience. Yes, we learn from every comment.

  15. Dan says:

    Hi Peter,

    Lol….that was quite an experience…:-)

    Thanks for sharing

  16. emiliano says:

    This morning I said nothing about Thursday, so late I am going to see where this day´s name comes from:

    [Old English Thursdæg, literally: Thor’s day; related to Old High German Donares tag; see Thor , thunder , day ]

    So, it is the day of Thor, the Generman Good, but in Spanish or other languages wich comes from Latin, jueves
    is the:
    In most Romance languages, the day is named after the Roman god Jupiter, who was the god of sky and thunder. In Latin, the day was known as Iovis Dies, “Jupiter’s Day”. In Latin, the genitive or possessive case of Jupiter was Iovis/Jovis and thus in most Romance languages it became the word for Thursday: Italian giovedì, Spanish jueves, French jeudi, Catalan dijous, and Romanian joi. This is also reflected in the p-Celtic Welsh dydd Iau.

    Thor? Júpiter? ….just the one, like Zeus by the Greek mythology.

    We have a saying here in Spain that says: You are always in the middle like “los jueves” but nothing about the Jupiter´s day.

    Cuca likes all these things and I use to ask her for the ethimology of the words.

    Next we´ll go where the names of the months come from. It is iterensting too.

    This morning I was asking for my Passport that it has been in the momento. Incredible, yesterdar I haven´t Passport, but now
    I have my Passport valid for ten years……I can go every place round the world being a “Unión Europea Passport”..that´s good.


    Thaks dear Tania, I could see you like also these kind of subjects.

    My best to you dear.


  17. Betty says:

    Indeed, Dear emiliano, it was Thursday yesterday and there was thunderstorm outside when we were having a club meeting last night.

    How nice to know that you have your passport to travel to anywhere in the world now.

    I hope you can live the dreams of your life and can see all the fascinating places not just on screens but in real life.

    All the best.

    Betty 🙂

  18. emiliano says:

    Thanks Betty, as we say here “that God listen to you”…que Dios te oiga.

    Today is Friday, lets look what friday comes from :

    Word Origin & History
    O.E. frigedæg “Frigga’s day,” (see Frigg), Gmc. goddess of married love, a W.Gmc. translation of L. dies Veneris, “day of (the planet) Venus,” which itself translated Gk. Aphrodites hemera. Cf. O.N. frijadagr, O.Fris. frigendei, M.Du. vridach, Du. vrijdag, Ger. Freitag.

    but also:
    A native character in Robinson Crusoe, so named because Crusoe found him on a Friday. Friday places himself in service to Crusoe and helps him survive.
    Note : Figuratively, a “man Friday” or “girl Friday” is a valued helper.

    Well I am learning a lot of subjects too, just at the first hour of morning, a morning like other; eight o´clock got up, now Gatufo is on my lap and Cuca is still in the bed listening
    tp the radio.

    Yesterday thousands of people encircle the Spanish Parlament in Madrid because they wanted to change everything, all the congresists be off, the goverment also be off, and
    even the King be off too. Well, that is our daily reality, more tan six millions of people without a job, more tan 52 per cent of Young people without a work, and more tan two
    millions of families with all their members without a work. Just incredible and it is also an explosive situation.

    Let´s talk about other subjects more happy.
    Yes, I have the Passport valid for ten years, but in fact I still don´t know where I am going to travel, when, or if at last I would travel some place or not. Cuca can´t go with
    me, so I have to travel alone and I don´t like to do that.
    It would be the first time after we married that we should be separated and it is a strong idea for me that some how it is difficult for my mind. Being Young I travelled always
    alone without any problem, but now it is diffirent.

    That´s all for this morning, we are going to breakfast in a while, just when Isabel comes home and she use to come about nine in the morning.

    See you later, emiliano

  19. emiliano says:

    Sorry talking about me I have said nothing about Afrodita…..Venus….Friday day.

    Greek God Aphrodita it was the god of love, beauty, pleasure and procreation. She has everything just a pleasure, but for Romans Aphrodite took the name of
    Venus, the symbol of beauty and love.

    So today, friday, it is a day to be happy, to love each other and have in mind beauty and nice things.

    Regards. emiliano

  20. Lilian says:

    Hi Dan.I wanted to say you I don’t
    Know why but always look for your comment sometimes I just come to comments part to read yours .Maybe the reason is that
    You are always honest and humble and I like that with you furthermore
    You have a cute sense of humor that makes your comments more interesting.But I have always
    Tought you must be in your 20 or maximum
    30 but today you surprised me ,Please don’t get me rude but now I wonder how old you are ?sorry but I am curious

    .thanks bye

  21. emiliano says:

    Sorry Jeff, I didn´t say anything but I like very much the photo with the boys at the school without shoes.
    It has to be very very old when the parent´s boys have not enough money to buy shoes for their Young

    I really like the photo, it show us another time where so much plenty of things we have now didn´t exist
    and even so much necessary as shoes for the feet of the boys, there wasn´t enough.
    First blonde boy is o tender, nice boy and nice other boys so serious at the school, nothing to be with
    the time we are living now in the bad called first world.

    Thanks dear Jeff. emiliano

  22. Betty says:

    — Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly (completely) content (happy; satisfied). What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful (important; significant) to you?

    The place where I am perfectly content is my bed.

    When I am on my bed, I signify to everyone in the house that I am resting.

    The reason I am resting is I am tired.

    When I am tired please do not ask me to do any more housework.

    The unfinished housework have to wait until tomorrow.

    What I do when I am in bed is actually very important.

    I am usually holding my iphone and read all the news stories, check into ESLPOD.Com to see what everyone including teachers and learners have written in the Blog; what Lucy and Jeff talk about in the podcast and English Cafe; and reply all my emails.

    It is very important/meaningful to me to keep up with the latest technology by using an iphone and also with the latest news in order not to be isolated from the society.

    Thats all, Dear Jeff, I know I am not smarter than a 12th grader.

    I don’t care because I am content anyway.

    Best Regards

    Betty 🙂

  23. Marcelo says:

    I’m in US since december last year. I’ll stay here to study during one year. I knowed that my english wasn’t good… but it is worst than I was thinking!!
    Every day I feel less smarter than a 5th grader!
    Imagine you trying say “choice another one” and the person that is hearing you understand “juice another one”!! We spent maybe 10 minutes to solve this:
    – Choice… – Juice??? – Choice…- Juice???
    That’s my challenge, my incident… But a great experience!
    The ESL Podcast helps me a lot ! Thanks!

  24. Dan says:

    Hi Lilian

    Thank you very much!

    I am a 42 years old single Man and yes, I am humble, honest and quite handsome too.

    I shoud not say that though.

    Again, thank you.

  25. emiliano says:

    So many years living inside ESL podcast that the site it is like home.
    No, I don´t feel myselft good on my bed in the way you said Betty, why?. May be because the
    two period of life when I have been worst (with depression) the only place I wanted to stay
    were “the bed” sleepy, forgetting everything that sorrounds me and inside I wanted just to die.

    So, being good I try to be in bed as less as possible, some how being in bed it is like being died.
    Having in mind so, I could understand you perfectly well Betty, it is easy to understand you
    because along the last 14 years I have doing something similar as your tasks at home, but
    without children, or daughters, I have only my dear Cuca to care of., but also Gatufo (for the last
    three years) and me.

    May be you could understand by all what I said about my own life that dear Cuca is not allright
    just from the last 14 years, so her husband, me, have to do all the things she did before but
    with a husband and three daughters.

    I know what a woman have to do in life, I have done it for years, but also I know what a man
    use to do being married….just resting all the house chores in his wife´s hands.

    So, yes, I understand you perfectly well.

    Now I have a nice woman that comes home everyday and some how take care of Cuca, first
    Cuca I have told her, and me.
    So, now Emiliano has a lot of time to do what he likes to do, also this help has been absolutely
    good for me. She took care of me and cook really good, now I had more tan 10 kg. more and
    I look better than before when I have to cook all the meals, for Cuca, me and the Cat.

    I would like to travel, alone?. Well it is possible because I have this nice woman, and friend, who
    could be at home with Cuca. She really loves Cuca, me too, so for Emiliano it is possible to have
    a rest, some hollidays after being at home for the last 14 years.
    A trip alone?. I do not really know what I am going to do.
    Some how I need some rest, just to go out from here, but some how I don´t like to be alone and
    left Cuca here at home, despite I know she will be good with Isabel. Isabel is born in Peru, Lima,
    and now she is like one more of the family. I am in debt with her absolutely, nearly sabe us, sabe
    my life.

    My situation is good now, respect a my wealthy situation, despite everything is going so bad here in
    Spain and the world that sorrounds me.
    It is just that sometimes we have the necessary to do what I like more, walk or run, but have not

    Yes, I have euros enough to go everyplace of the world, but I miss what I need to go… dear wife
    to go with here.
    So that has been always my doubt, I like to travel, see new places, countries and so forth. With Cuca
    and my friend Camila and Alicia travel a lot, but after being sick Cuca I always prefer to be with her
    that going other places on hollidays without her. I seems life without her means nothing to me, that´s
    the reality.
    After being so bad last year, it has been like a lesson, I am not so important after all, if I would gone
    away nothing have happened to my loving one. So, be humble Emiliano, you are not so important to
    her and you may take a relax and left your tasks to other person, Isabel now, so I am going to have a
    trip or not? That is the big question now…..first I have the Passport, after more than fifteen years
    without it, but going out from Spain…… is something to see.

    Cuca said always, go, go ,go…..and after you may told me, but before I have not anybody of my
    confidence to rest. Now?. Yes, I have a person, it would be that enough…well I hope that.
    May be yes, may be not. Who knows?.

    My best dear Betty, you have something, the same as dear Tania too, that makes me talk about my
    own life, and it is good, really good for me.
    Cuca, is at my right side now, in her pc., playing, we are at home listening the radio. She likes to
    listen to the radio very much. I do not so much, I prefer to listen to the music, but if she is happy
    I am happy too.
    The Cat is on my lap, as always, dreaming. He really loves me the same as her mami Cuca, so
    where are I going if I have here the one I need and love.
    Girls are outside already, they have their life to live……many years ahead, that´s reality of life my
    dear friends of the Blog.

    Bye Betty, bye Tania, dear friends.
    Bye other Blog friends, of course, but these two ones ares someone very special for me always.
    Well the same as Jeff, Lucy and Warren, my professors and friends too.


  26. Lilian says:

    Hi Dan.You know I can obviously
    See you are humble and honest but about
    Your handsomeness
    I should see you first at least I would be happy to see a picture of you and you can see mine too then we judge which one of us is more beautiful
    .Anyway thanks for your answer .In addition
    I agree with you about marriage
    .Thats the worst fault ever.
    As it goes from Chokhov ;someone who is afraid
    Of loneliness never gets married.Ciao

  27. Betty says:

    Hi Dan, Hi Lilian,

    Thanks for your comments about ‘Failure’ in marriage and subsequently a quote of Chekhov’s saying “If you are afraid of loneliness, don’t marry.” led me into finding a website called “” in which they included some of the negative quotations about marriage.

    I find it very funny reading all the quotes including two which I have list below:

    When a girl marries, she exchanges the attentions of many men for the inattention of one.
    — Helen Rowland

    Marriage is a three ring circus: engagement ring, wedding ring, and suffering.
    — Anonymous

    Got it?

    Betty 🙂

  28. Dan says:

    Hey Lilian,

    I am sorry, forgive my ignorance, but who is this Chokhov?

    I have never heard of him. Should I be ashamed of myself?

    I am not afraid of loneliness. I quite a lonely myself.
    In fact,a part when I am working and my three cats I spend most of my time in solitude.
    I like it, and a part, you know, some……. let’s say—– Manly needs—if you know what I mean, I do not miss anything.
    Many people do not realize with how little we can live and be content with it as well.

  29. Dan says:

    Hi Betty

    I DO NOT agrre with that Helen Rowland at all.
    What does that mean? that if a woman cheats on her man that is the man’s fault? and viceversa?
    I do not believe so. To me cheating is WRONG period. Then if the marriage is going down hill that’s another issue.
    I can PROUDLY say I have NEVER cheated on my ex Wife.

    I better like the second one ’cause it describes exacly how my marriage was.

    Thank you Betty. Hope your marriage is better than what I have experienced. You deserve that.

  30. Lilian says:

    Hi Dan sorry I dont know what to say I know who exactly chekhov was but decided to documentary find it for you in Wikipedia
    ; Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (Russian: ?????? ????????? ??????, pronounced [?n?ton ?pavl?v??t? ?t?ex?f]; 29 January 1860[1] – 15 July 1904)[2] was a Russian physician, dramatist and author who is considered to be among the greatest writers of short stories in history.[3] His career as a dramatist produced four classics and his best short stories are held in high esteem by writers and critics.[4][5] Chekhov practised as a doctor throughout most of his literary career: “Medicine is my lawful wife”, he once said, “and literature is my mistress.”[6].you know I think we Iranian have much knowledge
    about other countries culture ,famous people,history,geography
    …that’s because we don’t
    see ourselves
    in higher status,the exact opposite of people in some developed
    countries.Thats just my point of view and it might be wrong. Stammi bene

  31. Lilian says:

    Hi Betty.Thanks for your paying
    attention .That sentence
    With Helen Rowland
    was so cute.

  32. emiliano says:

    Good Betty, very funny indeed……….but

    so is Cuca a lucky woman or me?. Yes, she changed the attention of many men for the “attention of only one”, but as she is at my right

    I am goint to ask her:

    She said me it is not her case but she didn´t realice she was the attention of many, but yes she did, I know that as she was the incredible girl all
    boys wanted for them.

    Now I have not my ring for years, she does her for more than……..a lot of years (43), as a matter of fact I don´t like rings.
    I am with her because I want or because I can´t live without her, but not for a ring……a ring means nothing to me.

    With her I never, she said now she suffer with me when I have been sick.

    It is really funny Betty, but as you may see that is not with me or with Cuca.
    We have been really happy, it would be a lie if I tell another thing.

    All these are really odd to me, it is so because I have never understand so many problems. Even knowing that my daughters
    have broken with their boysfriends. The last have been Fátima after more than ten or fifteen years, Laura too, but Eva at
    least is happy married for more than ten years…..nearly fourteen.

    There is saying here in Spain that says:
    El que en el casar acierta en todo acierta…….more or less: “who in the marriage is correct in all hits” is it true?
    I do think it is, but it is something we all would like to do well, but it has to be difficult seeing what I could see.

    My best dear Betty……I could see you in my blog, yes, because every one country who looks in it appears in my control page.
    It is like magic., and Hong Kong received several visits. Thanks my friend, from the distance I really love you too Betty…in the
    best maner a man could love a friend….woman or man ….it is the same.


  33. Willy says:

    I had a girlfriend. That relationship lasted ten years from when I was seventeen to when I was twenty-seven.
    After a few of months which that relationship had begun I wanted to interrupt it, but my ex-girlfriend cried a lot so I returned with her because of pity towards her.
    So, by time, I got used to stay with her and I was considering it as my future wife.
    But she met another guy when I was twenty-seven, she has fallen in love and leaved me alone.
    I suffer a lot because I was attached to her (after ten years I think this is normal). If I didn’t let her move me then I would have leaved her after a few of months and I didn’t get attached to her and I didn’t suffer when She leaved me.
    So the lesson is: we never have to have pity when our feelings are the matter.
    Our life is too important to sacrifice it for someone. Get free.

  34. Dan says:

    Ciao Lilian,
    Ho notato che Mi saluti in Italiano.
    Ti posso chiedere se lo stai studiando?
    Sei una studente in Iran?

  35. emiliano says:

    He, good sunday to all, the sky is clouded and it seems Winter follows in Madrid.

    Sunday, first day of the week, let us see what is say about sunday:

    before 900; Middle English sun ( nen ) day, Old English sunnandæg, translation of Latin di?s s?lis, itself translation
    of Greek h?méra h?líou day of the sun; cognate with German Sonntag.

    But also the first day of the week, observed as the sabbath by most Christian sects.

    The current Greek name for Sunday, ??????? (Kyriake), means “Lord’s Day” coming from the word ?????? (Kyrios), which
    is the Greek word for “Lord”.

    The name “Sunday” comes from the Latin dies Dominicus (‘day of the Lord’), due to the Christian celebration of the Resurrection
    of Jesus. In ancient Rome called this day dies solis (“day of the sun ‘).

    In the Spanish culture and South America, latin culture, sunday is the seventh day of the week, our weeks start with monday
    intead of sunday.
    It is a day to give the Lord thanks, going to the church and not working for our tradition, but not for the muslim cultura or
    the jewist, where sunday it is not a day to rest.

    To me now it is more or less the same as other day of the week, get up at eight from the bed, Gatufo comes with me to
    the livingroom and Cuca remains in the bed an hour more.

    The best exercise to be awake it is look in the ESL blog and write something which can be inside my mind.
    Inside my mind? What is it?. Well, first of all I am worried about my dear friend Camila. Today I am going to phone again
    to see how is she?. This is the first idea that comes to my mind in the mornings, the hard way she is going through at this
    days since last August.

    Where is the cat now? He is not with me, I am going to look for him, it is cold and he gives me nice worm on my lap
    at the mornings……………
    He was on the bed at Cuca´s side, but now he is with me looking at the screen.

    Have a good sunday my friends, tomorrow will be another day.


  36. emiliano says:

    He Willy,
    pity has nothing to do with love, but I could understand you perfectly well.

    A good relation can´t be constructed about pity, that is a great mistake
    lot of people do and usually it finally ruin all love and feelings.

    Along my life I have seen lot of couples formed about pity and they have
    been unhappy for a long time.
    It is necessary to admire you partner, you coud give your life for her/him
    and the most important thing is being good friends and having good time
    together. Laugh a lot about nearly everything, even living a bad situation.

    Yesterday I was talking with Alicia Camila´s friend and at the end she
    was laughing with their bad situation.
    Here we call it laughing intead of crying, it is better to the spirint just
    to laugh of oneself if it is possible.

    Go ahead Willy, sure you´ll find the best one for you and you´ll be the
    one for her.


  37. emiliano says:

    Good morning friends of the Blog.

    The weather is really bad here, it´s cold, very cold. Spring hásn´t come yet as this morning we were at 2º C only, and the max. would be 7 ºC.
    It´s colder tan in Copenhaguen, where Laura my daughter is working.

    But in a week or two we´ll be again at 26ºC or more, so there is not spring, we use to go from Winter to summer. There is saying that says: A
    person that support the temperatura of Castilla in Spain it is ready to suppor any kind of weather.
    Some days in Madrid, Salamanca or Burgos could be more than 20/25ºC of difference between the morning to the noon, so at mornings you are
    freeze and at noon all cloths are out, carrying them on your arm.

    April is finishing, so let´s see the origin of the name;

    before 1150; Middle English < Latin Apr?lis (adj., as modifying m?nsis month), probably
    based on Etruscan apru Aphrodite < Greek Aphrodít?; replacing Middle English
    Averil (< Old French avril < L), in its turn replacing late Old English aprilis (< L)

    [af-ruh-dahy-tee] Show IPA

    the ancient Greek goddess of love and beauty, identified by the Romans with Venus.


    Again Venus/Aphrodite, but not today in Madrid where everything is cold.
    I have to put the heater once again and Gatufo it is on my lap giving nice warm.
    Yesterday night he was a bad cat who was running up and dow through the house
    and awaked me twice wich such a great noice. At the end I have to got up and could
    see he had found a little silver paper and was playing with it on the floor.

    Having in mind emiliano is the only one who is writing here along the week end, except
    Dan, I think it is enough for the moment. Have a good monday.


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