If you are a new listener, If this is your first time here, welcome! I’m Craig. This is Reza, and we are going to help you improve your English, grow your grammar, vocalize your vocabulary and perfect your pronunciation!
In this episode: Either and Neither, Parts of the body and our weekly wind-ups
An email from Javier Garcia-Mauriño Espino
“I have really enjoyed reading your article about SMART goals in the May ‘Cuaderno Mensual‘.
This is precisely what I have been doing to learn and improve my English.
In fact, I defined a three-year plan at the beginning of 2013 and I am now in the last year of mastering the language.
The main milestones (milestone on road – mojón, contador – a marker of distance / intermediate goal = escalón) were B2, C1 and C2, one each every year, that’s why this article has been so curious and interesting for me and I am sharing my experience with you due to (because of) the excellent work you are doing in the behalf of English learners.
I hope you enjoy my story as much as I have enjoyed your article.”
“My name is Mariluz and I´m trying to improve my English by myself. I enjoy listening (TO) your podcasts and I find them really useful for improving my listening skills.
I’ve got some doubts about come back to (or in?) Spain
go back to (or in) Spain
arrive in (or to?) England
I´ve been to (or in?) Paris
I´m really confused about that and anytime I have to say “I have to go TO anywhere”,
I don´t know if I have to use in or to. Could you explain this to me?”
We say “I’ve been TO….” In English: “I’ve been to Rome, I haven’t been to Paris.”
The preposition with ‘arrive’ is often ‘at’. – “Last night I arrived at my brother’s house just in time for tea.” ‘at’ is a preposition of place (Arrive at work, at school, at the office etc)
The verb ‘get’ is often used in place of ‘arrive’ – When I get home, when I get to the office, when I get to school etc. ‘Arrive’ is often more formal than ‘get’.
“What time does your flight arrive in Los Angeles?’
Get has the preposition ‘to’ “Get to work, get to the bank”, etc
“I´m not sure either about the use of “further” and “so far”, I listen some expressions but I don´t know how to use them.
I hope these questions allow you to make a interesting podcast and help me and other people to improve our English.”
Thanks in advance, Mariluz
Further is the comparative of far. Paris is far from Valencia, but Moscow is further / farther (más lejos)
Also ‘más a fondo‘ I don’t know the answer, let me investigate further.
‘so far’ = hasta ahora. “I’ve had 3 cups of coffee so far today.” How much have you drunk so far?
Also, “hasta cierto punto” – “You can cycle from Valencia to Moraira, but you can only go so far on a cycle path (carril bici – ciclovía, ciclorruta in Colombia) and then you have to cycle on a road with other cars and traffic.”
Grammar: Either and Neither
Either usually means there is choice between two possibilities:
You can have either vodka or whisky.
Either we leave now, or we miss the last train.
Neither……nor is used in a negative way when you want to say that two or more things are not true:
Neither Craig nor Reza speak Chinese.
“neither” can be used as an adverb:
Reza can’t speak Chinese. Neither can I. (tampoco) / I can’t either.
Reza can’t speak Chinese, nor can Craig.
I’d like to visit Mexico and Brazil. Either country could be interesting. (Cualquier país podría ser interesante.)
Neither shirt really suits you. (Ningúna camisa realmente te queda bien.)
“None of the shirts suit you.” (for a choice of 3 or more)
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Vocabulary: Parts of the body
hombro = shoulder
cabeza = head
codo = elbow
espalda = back
puño = fist
corazón = heart
hueso = bone
I’m heading for the supermarket – to head for – to go in the direction of
If I shoulder all the blame, what am I doing? – to shoulder the blame – to take all the responsibilty
Do you know anyone who is a bit tight-fisted (mean, not generous)?
What about big-headed? (self-important, a person with a high opinion of themselves, conceited, creído)
Two-faced (hypocritical, falso)
Thick-skinned (insensitive to criticism)
What are you doing if you’re elbowing your way through a crowd? – to elbow (use your elbows to push people out of the way and make room for yourself)
I went out last night to a restaurant and I had to foot the bill – to foot the bill = to pay for everything
to leg it = to run away quickly!
I think we may have a sponsor to back our podcast. to back = to support (usually financially) “a backer”
I have a bone to pick with you! – to talk about a difficult problem with someone (especially if you’re upset or angry).
My boss gave me a pat on the back – He congratulated me
When we do this podcast we have a free hand – we can talk about anything, there are no limits.
She went behind my back – She did it without consulting you, in secret.
I can’t understand computer code. It’s way above my head. – it’s too complicated. It’s beyond my comprehension.
Learn these idioms by heart – from memory
You’re pulling my leg – You’re joking (tomar el pelo) – to make fun of
I’ve got a sweet tooth – You like sweet things
You took the words right out of my mouth – You said exactly what I was about to say.
Relax, Let your hair down for a change! – take it easy, chill!
Give me a hand – help me
Craig and Reza’s Weekly wind-ups (to wind up = annoy, irritate, bother: fastidiar, disgustar, molestar)
Reza: people who speak audibly in cinemas
Craig: Websites with no contact information
A weekly wind up from Elisa: People who wear sunglasses inside really wind up Elisa.
Send us an email, or record your voice and send us a sound file, with a comment, question or weekly wind-up to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The music in this podcast is by Pitx. The track is called ‘See You Later’