Feedback/News: Hasselback potatoes come from Sweden, not from South Africa as we said in the last episode. Thank you to Enrique (Colombia) for his comment that Craig’s Spanish is improving.
Gramática: For, During and While
A question on Facebook from David Blanco Vargas from Sevilla
How to use during
During is a preposition which is used before a noun (during + noun) to say when something happens. It does not tell us how long it happened. For example:
“Nobody spoke during the meeting.”
“We don’t get any snow here in Valencia during the winter.”
“During my childhood I lived on a farm.”
How to use while
When is used to talk about two things that are happening at the same time. The length of time is not important. Remember that while is used with a subject and a verb (while + subject + verb). For example:
“The phone rang while (or when) I was having a shower.”
“I met my girlfriend while (or when) we were travelling in South America.”
“I’ll speak to you when (not XwhileX) I finish my work.”
How to use for
For is a preposition which is used with a period of time to say how long something goes on:
“We’ve been podcasting for 2 months.”
“I’ve been living in Valencia for 16 years.”
Reza has been teaching English for 20 years.”
“Craig has known Reza for a while” (un rato)
Vocabulary Corner: Travel words
Trip (countable noun) / travel (is an uncountable noun and a verb)
To go on a trip
to go on a business trip
The journey from Madrid to Valencia takes about 3 and a half hours
Flight (noun) / Fly (verb)
Reza’s flight to Belfast was about two and half hours. He took a flight from Alicante.
Voyage – travelling by ship or in space
Cruise – Reza has never been on a cruise. He’d like to cruise around the Mediterranean.
The titanic wasn’t a cruise. It didn’t stop at many different places.
Learn and revise travel vocabulary in our holiday lesson
Phrasal verb: To pick up
Can you pick up that box for me, it’s very heavy. (literal)
I’ll pick you up tomorrow morning and take you to the airport. (Idiomatic) – to drop off
“Pick me up at my hotel and drop me off at the airport.”
I’ll give you a lift – Can you give me a lift to the supermarket?
Give me a ride (American English)
A gin and tonic is a ‘pick me up’.
I picked up a girl at a party yesterday, but she wouldn’t give me her phone number. (Idiomatic)
to pick up/to chat up = ligar
to get off with (a girl/boy) = to kiss etc……
How are you? – I’m fine
How’s it going? – Fine, what about you?
How’re you doing? – I’m great, and you?
good morning (in Ireland) NOT X”Top of the morning to you!”X
Reza’s Top Tip: Job Interviews
Search on YouTube for “job interviews”
Record yourself with a camcorder or with your mobile phone.
Use video to improve your body language and pronunciation.
Listen to a job interview and practise work vocabulary.
If you need help with interviews and translatons, contact Reza at firstname.lastname@example.org
Send us an email, or a sound file (mensaje de voz en mp3) with a comment or question to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Puedes darnos estrellas y una crítica en iTunes.
The music in this podcast is by Pitx. The track is called See You Later – licensed by creative commons under a by-nc license at ccmixter.org.
FULL TRANSCRIPTION (kindly contributed by Patricia Alonso)
C: In the last episode, episode 12, Reza says that hasselback potatoes are a South African dish. We would like to apologise because hasselback potatoes come from Sweden, so we apologise to all Swedes and all potatoes.
Hello and welcome to episode 13 of “Aprender Inglés con Reza y Craig”.
R: Hi everybody.
C: Hello Reza, how are you?
R: I’m fine, and you?
C: It’s very good to see you, yeah, I’m fine, I’m fine. We have some feedback. Some news. A friend of ours, Enrique García Rodríguez from Bogotá in Colombia has written to us and he says “Thank you for teaching me English. Thanks to you, I’m improving my English. I really like the podcasts, they are very well structured and organised. Congratulations. Also congratulations to Craig because he has improved a lot his Spanish. Your friend Enrique García Rodríguez”. Thank you, Enrique.
R: Enhorabuena, Craig?
C: Ya, estoy muy muy… ¿graciosos? Jaja, no.
R: Gracioso si quieres, ¿agradecido?
R: Pero gracioso también.
C: Que he mejorado mi español. Thank you.
So gramática this week, we have a question that was written on Facebook from David Blanco Vargas from Sevilla in Spain and David says “Please explain the difference between for, during and while”. For, during and while. Reza, can you shed some light, throw some light on the differences between those three words?
R: Ok, well, let’s begin with during, how do you use during? It’s a preposition which is used before a noun or a pronoun to say when something happens. It doesn’t tell us how long it happened, but just when it happened. For example, “Nobody spoke during the meeting”.
C: Durante la reunión.
R: Durante la reunion. That’s when it happened. “We don’t get any snow here in Valencia during the winter”. The winter is when it happened. Or in the case of these two sentences when it didn’t happen, yeah?
R: Or… “During my childhood I lived in a farm”. When did I live in a farm? During my childhood, it’s when it happened, I didn’t say how long, I just said when it happened, during my childhood.
C: So that would translate very easily from durante, isn’t it? You use durante in Spanish and during in English.
C: Now, what about while?
R: While, ok. Well, while can mean the same as when but not always. When we’re using the word while to talk about two things that are happening at the same time, then we can also use when, and the length of time isn’t important. But while is not a preposition, while needs to go with a subject and a verb. For example “The phone rang while I was having a shower”.
C: Mientras que.
R: Mientras que.
C: Estaba duchando.
R: Me estaba duchando. In this sentence we could also use when, “My phone rang when I was having a shower.” In that case, two things happening at the same time, you can use while or when, while is more common perhaps, but when is also correct here. Another example “I met my girlfriend while we were travelling in South America” or “when we were travelling in South America”. Two things happening at the same time, my travels in South America and meeting my girlfriend.
C: That’s perfectly clear.
R: Ok. However, sometimes we use when for another meaning and while is not possible. Imagine I said to you “I’m busy now, I’ll speak to you when I finish my work”. When I finish my work, I cannot say while there, only when is possible. First, I will finish my work and then later I will speak to you. I will speak to you when I finish my work. The two actions there are not happening at the same time, they’re happening at different times.
R: In that case only when is possible. So, while is for two actions happening at the same time, you can also use when. But when only, not while, for actions happening at different times.
Now, on to for. For is a preposition and it’s used with a period to say how long something goes on.
C: How long have we been doing this podcast, for example.
R: We’ve been podcasting for about two months, two and a half months.
C: We’ve been podcasting for two months, the period of time that something has happened.
R: Yeah. Or we could say “I’ve been living in Valencia for sixteen years.
C: That’s true, isn’t it? You’ve been living here for sixteen years?
R: For sixteen years, that’s right. I’ve been teaching English for twenty years, so for plus the length of time. But you don’t have to use a number, you don’t have to use a number. It’s very common to use a number with for, but you could just focus on the length of time without being exact, for example I have been teaching English for a long time.
C: I’ve known you for many years.
R: Many years. We’re not specifying the number but we are focusing on the fact that it’s a period of time. That’s for. That’s the main difference between for and during. The problem for Spanish speakers perhaps is you can translate during as durante and you can translate for as durante, but in English you must distinguish. If I said to you “I’ve been living in Valencia for sixteen years”, in Spanish I can translate that as durante 16 años.
R: But you cannot say during in English, you must say for because we’re focusing on the period of time. Remember we said it doesn’t snow in Valencia during the winter? We’re not focusing on the period of time, with during we’re focusing on when it happened, the winter. That’s the difference between for and during.
C: That’s very clear. But to complicate matters even further, I could say “I’ve know you for a while”, using while in a different sense.
R: Yes, using while there as a noun. A while means a period of time.
C: Un rato.
R: Normally we mean a long period of time.
C: Un rato, ¿no?
R: Un rato is a perfect translation because it could be “I’ve known you for a while”, fifteen years, or it could be “I’m just gonna sit here for a while”, could be ten minutes, un rato.
C: You haven’t brought me a drink for a while.
R: That’s true, I was hoping you wouldn’t realize.
C: Moving on to vocabulary, in the vocabulary corner this episode I’d like to speak a little about travel words because I recently got back from my Christmas travels as we mentioned in our last episode.
R: He does get around listeners, he does get around.
C: I get around. The difference between travel and trip is a common mistake by Spanish speakers. My students love to say “I’ve been on a travel”. What would you say to someone who said that in your lesson, Reza? I’ve been on a travel to Paris.
R: Well, the most important thins is you can’t say a travel because the word travel as a noun is uncountable.
R: Travel can also be a verb but if it’s gonna be a noun it’s uncountable, so you can never say “a” with an uncountable noun.
C: So, you’d have to say trip, I’ve been on a trip.
R: Ah, trip, because trip is countable.
C: And there’s a very useful expression, remember the expression go on a trip. I’ve been on a trip, I’m going on a trip. It doesn’t matter if it’s a short trip, of one day or two, or a long trip, for six months or a year, go on a trip, ir de viaje. I’m going on a business trip, for example. Trip and travel.
Journey, I think in Spanish is trayecto. For example, the journey from Valencia to Barcelona takes about three and a half hours by train. The journey from Madrid to Sevilla takes longer. So journey, trayecto.
R: But it could also be viaje, there is a meaning of “I went on an interesting journey many years ago”. That could be viaje.
C: True, ok.
R: So, Craig, you mentioned there are lots of different used of trip and you said that trip can be for long or short periods of time.
R: Lie a trip around the world, you said on a business trip…
R: A short trip… OK. However, I would say that the word journey is never for…
C: A short trip.
R: A very short trip.
C: I agree with that.
R: You never say journey for that.
R: For example, I would never say… Let’s go… We would say “Let’s go on a trip from Valencia to Alboraya”. Listeneres, if you don’t know, Alboraya is right beside Valencia, it would take three minutes to get there. You couldn’t say “Let’s go on a journey to Alboraya”, you wouldn’t say it, you wouldn’t use the word journey for that. A trip to Alboraya. From Valencia to Alboraya you would never say journey, you’d say trip.
C: You’d say trip. Another confusing pair of words, fly and flight. Many people use fly, many Spanish speakers use fly, the verb as a noun, so they say “I have a long fly”. Actually, the noun of fly is flight. Did you fly to Belfast, or…
R: I did.
C: Did you go by boat?
R: No, I flew.
C: How long was the flight?
R: It lasted about two and a half hours.
C: That’s not too bad. Did you fly from Valencia?
R: No, because there’s nothing direct from Valencia to Belfast, so I took a flight from Alicante to Belfast and I came back from Belfast to Barcelona.
C: And how was your flight?
R: Fine, no problem.
C: Was it Ryanair?
R: No, it isn’t, it was Easyjet.
C: Easyjet. Finally, voyage by sea, I believe, or by space, por espacio. So, you can have a voyage, a long sea voyage on a boat or a ship ad also a voyage in space on a spaceship.
One more word, cruise, to travel by boat on a cruise ship. Be careful at the pronunciation, you know that actor Tom Cruise? It’s the same pronunciation, there’s a vibration on the final consonant sound “s” like a bee, cruise. Do you like cruises? Have you been on a cruise?
R: I’ve never been on a cruise in my life, Craig. I’d like to.
C: Where would you like to cruise to?
R: I’d like to cruise around the Mediterranean. There’s a point Craig, I’ve just thought, you cruise around the Mediterranean, let’s say we set sail from Valencia and we went to, let’s see, Venice, in Italy, then we went to…
R: Córcega, then, is there a port…
C: Greek Islands.
R: Ah, Greek Islands, Crete, is there a port in Tel Aviv?
R: Haifa, then we’d go to Libia, maybe Bengasi, and then we’d go to Morocco and then back to Valencia. So, stopping in various places, that’s a cruise.
C: Sounds tempting.
R: Sounds tempting, doesn’t it? Now, everybody’s heard of the Titanic, it went from England to New York. We don’t call that a cruise, why not?
C: Set from Ireland, set from Dublin, didn’t it?
R: Well, it set from Southampton, but it stopped in a place called Cobh, which is near Cork, also to pick up passengers. So there were two stops, Southampton and Cobh, passengers were picked up from both places. Anyway, we don’t call that a cruise, why not?
C: We don’t call that a cruise?
R: The Titanic wasn’t a cruiser, people didn’t go on a cruise.
C: It’s true.
R: I’ve never heard the word cruise used…
C: Is it because a cruise stops in various ports?
R: That’s it.
C: For a spell, for a while. And then it continues, so it’s not like a means of travel as such, it’s more a touristic way of visiting different ports in a certain area.
R: The readers….
C: The readers? The listeners.
R: The listeners will know that there couldn’t be many people who don’t know that the reason that Titanic sank was in an iceberg, why did it hit an iceberg? It was going too fast. Cruise ships don’t go too fast, do they?
R: I’ve never heard of a cruiser going top fast. They might sink but they don’t go too fast because when you cruise you’re taking your time, you’re stopping in different pasts. The Titanic was not a cruise, it was a liner, a transatlantic liner. It went in a line from England, Ireland to New York, a liner. That’s the difference.
C: That’s right.
C: Reza, do you have a phrasal verb for us this episode?
R: I do, it’s the phrasal verb pick up.
C: To pick up.
R: Pick up.
C: I see and I suppose as usual you’re going to tell us that there is a literal meaning and maybe one or two idiomatic meanings.
R: Exactly. The meaning which takes no real effort to understand is if I would say for example “That’s very heavy, that box there, would you pick it up for me?”
C: To pick up a box, to pick up an object.
R: Take it in your hand and remove it from the floor to your hands.
C: IN an upwards direction.
R: Upwards direction, pick up.
C: Pick up that pen that’s fallen on the floor.
R: That’s pretty obvious. Another meaning of pick up is if I said to you “I’ll pick you up tomorrow morning and take you to the airport”. That pick up means I will take you in my car.
R: Recoger. Take you in my car.
C: Pick me up at my hotel.
R: Exactly. So, what’s the opposite of pick up in a car then? Or pick up in a taxi.
C: Drop off.
R: Drop off.
C: Drop off. Pick me up at the hotel and drop me off at the airport.
R: Exactly. Pick up, drop off, yeah. A taxi could do that and you would pay them money, and if a person who was not a taxi driver like a friend of yours did it, who’s not asking for money, you would say that they give you a lift.
R: You’ll say “I’ll pick you up tomorrow and I’ll drop you off”, give you a lift.
C: Can you give me a lift to the supermarket?
R: Yeah. But in American English, listeners, people don’t say that, what do you say Craig? You’ve been to America.
C: Oh, my god, you’ve put me on the spot. Give me a ride perhaps?
R: Give me a ride.
C: Give me a ride, man.
R: Yeah. British English give me a lift, American English give me a ride. That means to pick you up and drop you off for free, but taxi drivers, they don’t give you a ride or a lift, they charge.
C: Of course, if you ask someone to give me a lift, to give you a lift, they could say “You look fantastic today, you look wonderful, the world’s yours, then go for it.”
R: Yes, another meaning of give you a lift.
C: Give me a lift.
C: Give me a lift. Motivate me.
R: Aha. And, if you’re feeling a bit down, listeners, I very occasionally would do this, very occasionally, feeling a bit down, it’s late at night, all my classes are finished, I feel, I might have a little gin & tonic as a pick-me-up.
C: Stimulates you, yeah.
C: A pick-me-up.
R: And last meaning of pick up for today is a funny one. If I said to you “I picked up a girl yesterday but she wouldn’t give me her phone number”, it doesn’t mean that I give her a lift in this occasion. It means that…
C: You lifted her physically off her feet?
R: No, not that! But I tried to lift her spiritually off her feet, let’s say if you pick a person in a romantic way that means you meet them, you chat them up and you have a romantic encounter.
C: But is it technically picking up a girl if she refuses to give you her phone number? That’s the question.
R: Mmm… Yeah, that’s pick up, yeah.
C: You could still say I picked up a girl but she didn’t wanna see me again.
R: Yeah, it’s still pick up, yeah. I would maybe make a distinction between pick up and get off with.
R: If you get off with someone that means you picked them up and you were ultimately successful in your romantic intentions.
C: So you kissed her and you…
R: Kissed her and then we went into the bedroom, and after listeners we’ll have to close the door, we can’t say anymore but you can imagine. That is to get off with someone. But to pick up someone just means that you chatted them up and they decided to spend some time with you. You may or may not have got into the bedroom, it’s not clear with the word pick up.
C: So you could pick up a girl in a bar for example.
C: You could pick up a girl in a party, you meet her, you find out her name, you chat, you talk to her and hopefully you exchange numbers or email addresses and you see her again.
R: I might get off with her, I might not. Knowing me, Craig, she would probably say no because all the way home I’ll be saying to her “Oh, can you give me a recipe for dulce de leche?” and it will annoy her so much that I won’t get off with her. She would say “Oh, get away from here, you and your dulce de leche, stop it, leave me alone.”
C: Yeah, you wouldn’t pick her up if you gave her that line.
C: Moving on to pronunciation, and last episode we spoke about the first time you meet someone, and you say, you remember listeners? You say nice to meet you or pleased to meet you, when you shake hands, when you say hello to somebody for the first time. But when you see somebody again that you’ve met previously then you can use different expressions. Now, formally you may know because it’s in most course books. You could say “How are you?”, “How are you? I’m fine”. But, in this podcast I’d like you to introduce you to some more informal expressions for seeing somebody who you know. You could say for example “How’s it going?”. How’s it going Reza?
R: Fine. What about you?
C: Yeah, I’m fine. You could say “How’re you doing?” Now that, to break that down slowly how’re you doing, HOW-ARE-YOU-DOING, cómo te va. How you doing. How you doing Reza?
R: I’m great and you?
C: Yeah, I’m doing fine. You could say “What’s up?”. You could say, where I grew up in London we used to say “Alright?”. Did you say that in Belfast, alright?
R: Sometimes, alright, yeah. And don’t some people in London pronounce it “Awright”? They pronounce the “r” kind of like a “w”. By the way, listeners we don’t recommend that, but some people do.
C: It’s not important to speak like that but it is important sometimes to recognize and identify when somebody is saying alright, especially if you’re in London. So “Alright? How is it going? How’s it going? How’re you doing? What’s up?, Alright”. Can you think of anymore?
R: You mentioned last week Craig, “Whatcha”?
C: Whatcha, that’s right, whatcha.
R: And I mentioned that Belfast crease in “Boutcha”.
C: Boutcha. How aboutcha? But what would an Australian say?
R: G’ Day.
C: G’ Day?
R: Might be even sport.
C: G’ Day sport, G’ Day mate. How’re you doing? What’s up? And an American? What would an American say? How’re you doing perhaps also.
R: “How dee doodee”? No… Not in the 20th century anyway.
C: Howdee partner? Jaja. Anyway, one or two informal expressions of greeting.
R: Just one more thing. A stereotype of Irish people, we don’t really say it today, listeners, but the joke is that the Irish are supposed to say “Top of the morning to you” as a greeting.
C: They don’t say that? I thought…
R: They don’t really, maybe they did a hundred of years ago but not in a very long time.
C: Top of the morning to you.
R: We don’t say that.
C: What would you say?
R: Good morning.
C: Good morning.
C: Reza, do you have a tip for us this episode?
R: You know what Craig? I’d just go crazy and say I don’t have a tip. Why don’t you give the listeners a tip today?
C: I give a tip, oh… Put me on the spot. Actually, I do, I do have a tip. Job interviews. Obviously now many people are looking for jobs, sometimes interviews are in English, you do have to speak in English during an interview, and if you go to Youtube and you search for job interviews you will find lots of examples of how to behave in a job interview, how to answer questions in English in a job interview. Now, most of these videos are aimed or directed at native English speakers but they will also be useful for you to get an idea of the formal language used in job interviews, how you should answer questions, and there are also many examples of real job interview questions on Youtube. So, use it, it’s free. If you have internet at home, go to Youtube, search for job interview and just watch, watch a few videos to get an idea of a job interview in English. And, if you have a video camera, or many people now have video capabilities on their mobile phone, video yourself, imagine you are in an interview, answer questions about your experience, about your education, your background, your previous jobs and then watch yourself and try to improve your communication skills, try to improve your pronunciation of English, your body language…. So, use videos as a way of improving your performance for your job interview. Would you like to add anything to that?
R: No, I’d just like to say, it’s a great tip and very important life skill.
C: And also remember, if you need help with translating your CV or if you need any translation services, Reza would be more than happy to get in touch with you by email and give you quotations. Your email address, Reza?
C: email@example.com. If you have a question, if you have a comment about these podcasts please send us an email or a sound file with a mensaje de voz mp3. Write a comment, ask a question, send us a sound file to firstname.lastname@example.org,. And remember to please go to itunes, put some stars up for us, pon algunas estrellas en una crítica en itunes, so that more people can find our podcast.
Thank you for listening, thank to Reza and we’ll see you in the next episode.
R: Bye bye!
C: Take care!
The music in this podcast is by Pitx, the track is called See you later, licensed by Creative Commons under a by-nc license at cc mixter.org.