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Advanced Speaking American English Conversation: 1 Hour of Advanced English Learning | Speaking American English Conversation | English TV ✔ Do you want to speak English easily and fluently? This video is for those who want to learn English quickly, easily & effectively. You can start using them right now!
- 00:00 Staying in Touch
- 01:27 Going out
- 03:09 Shopping
- 05:06 Hometowns
- 06:47 Learning New Customs
- 08:55 Calling a Hospital
- 11:03 Meeting Old Friends
- 12:43 Sleep Deprived!
- 14:38 To clone or Not to clone?
- 16:36 On a College Campus
- 18:49 Looking for a Summer Job
- 20:42 Vacation Plans
- 22:26 Earth Day
- 24:20 Touring a Health Club
- 26:14 At a Food Court
- 27:59 Finding a Place to Live
- 31:06 Arriving in San Francisco
- 32:53 What do people really mean?
- 36:02 Meeting new friends
- 37:29 A Single Mother
- 39:57 In the City
- 41:42 Shopping for Food
- 43:14 Finding the Right Apartment
- 44:47 Finding a Job
- 47:49 Watching TV
- 49:24 Explaining a Sport
- 50:53 Borrowing Money
- 53:40 Using Technology to Stay in Touch
- 56:31 What do you like to do for Fun?
- 59:16 A baby shower
Staying in touch
Lee? Are you okay? What's the matter?
Yeah, Lee! Why are you so sad?
I'm reading an email from my mom in Korea.
Is she all right?
Yes, she's fine, but I miss her, and I miss my other family and friends in
Korea. I guess I'm homesick.
Yeah, I sometimes get homesick for my family.
Me too, I really want to see my family and friends in California soon.
How often do you hear from your family, Lee?
Besides email, I get two or three letters a month. How about you?
I usually call home.
I usually stay in touch just by phone because it's easy.
Well, I really want to talk to my family. Email just isn't the same. But it's
expensive to call Korea.
Oh, call them, Lee! Just talk for three minutes.
Yeah, that's not very expensive. In fact, you can use my phone card.
Good idea! Call now before we go to the movies. There's a pay phone
You're right. I really need to talk to them. But wait for me, OK?
OK, great! I'll see you tomorrow at seven o'clock. Right. Bye.
Hmm. Who was that?
Yeah! Someone special?
That was Michael, a really nice guy in my computer science class.
He asked me out. I accepted so…
So, one phone call, and now you have a boyfriend!
Oh, c’mon, Alicia. He's not my boyfriend yet!
Well, it sounds nice. I need my parents’ permission to go out on a date
with a boy.
Yeah… one of my friends here at the college is from India, and he says,
in his country, parents used to arrange all dates – and marriages, too.
And sometimes they still do.
Wow! That's interesting!
Hmm! Lee… you said your friend is from India?
And your friend is a guy, right?
Yes. His name is Varun.
Well, a girlfriend of mine in my math class is from India, too! Her name
is Parveena. Do you think Varun would like to meet her?
You mean on a date?
Sure. Why not? That's a great idea, Alicia.
I don't know. Maybe they need their parents’ permission…
Oh, come on, Lee.
OK, OK! I don't know why you want to be a matchmaker. But I'll ask
Great! And I'll call Parveena!
Hi, Beth. Come on in.
Hi, Alicia! How are you doing?
Alicia, this is my friend Ali. He's from Silver Spring Maryland.
Hi, Ali. It's nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you, too.
Well, please come in and have a seat.
Can I get you something? Coffee? Soda?
Oh, no, thanks.
No thank you. I'm fine.
So, Alicia, we're going to go shopping. Do you want to come?
Gee, I don't know… I shop mostly online these days.
Really? Why is that?
Because it saves time – and gas!
What do you mean?
Well, you don't have to drive your car…
Right. And you don't have to look for parking. The mall is so crowded
Yeah but online you can't see things very well. And you can't touch
them! And, with clothes, you can't try them on! I like to browse when I
Me too!… and it's such a nice day… why do you want to sit in front of a
Yeah, I see what you mean… but I don't have much money!
No problem! You can come with us and save money.
We aren't going to take any money or credit cards with us. And we aren't
going to spend any money. We're just going to look around.
That's right! We're going window – shopping.
Great idea! Then I am going!
Beth! Hey, Beth. How's it going?
Ali! Hi! I'm fine. How’re you?
Fine, thanks. Beth, this is Lee. Lee, this is my friend, Beth.
Nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you. Are you from around here?
No. I'm from Seoul Korea.
Really? That's interesting. Seoul's the capital of Korea, isn't it?
Yes, that's right. How about you? What's your hometown?
I'm from San Anselmo, California.
San An-sel-mo? Is that a big city?
No, it's a small town in Northern California. There are about 20,000
people there. What's the population of Seoul?
It's a really big city. There are over ten million people in Seoul.
Wow! That's a lot of people!
Yes, it is. But there's good public transportation, so it isn't bad.
How about the nightlife? Are there any good clubs or discos?
Are you kidding? There are hundreds! Seoul has fantastic nightlife!
… uh-oh. I have to run. The library closes in 10 minutes. See you guys
Take care, Beth.
You too. Bye.
Learning New Customs
So, Salma, is this your first trip to the United States?
Yes, it is.
And what's your impression so far?
Well, the people are really friendly, and the city is beautiful. But the
food; well, it's not so good.
Oh, yeah, that's what I thought too when I first got here. But I'm used to
American food now. I actually love hot dogs and French fries.
So last night I took Salma to a Mexican restaurant. I wanted her to try
Did you like it?
Yeah, the food was pretty good, but it was too much. I couldn't finish it
Salma was amazed when I took the leftovers home in a doggie bag.
Yeah, that's funny, isn't it? They call it a doggy bag but it's for people.
Anyway, what else surprised you?
That the restaurant was so cold! We don't use air conditioning so much
in my country. Oh, and the water had ice in it, too. I had to put on my
sweater, I was so cold.
Excuse me, hello! Oh, hi, Eduardo.
Excuse me Miss. But we don't allow cell phones in the restaurant.
Oh, sorry. I didn't know… Eduardo, I'll have to call you back… That's
strange for me. In Lebanon we use phones everywhere. I mean, we try to
talk quietly in a place like this, butt…
Same in Japan. This kind of rule is getting more popular, though.
I'm sorry, Salma.
No, not, it's OK. When in Rome, do as the Romans do.
Calling a Hospital
Welcome to Faber Hospital and clinics. If this is an emergency, please
hang up and call 911. Please listen carefully as our menu options have
+ For the 24 – hour pharmacy, please press 1.
+ For Family Medicine, press 2.
+ For the health clinic, press 3.
+ To speak to the operator, please press 0 or just stay on the line.
Hmm. I need the clinic; I'll press 3.
Health clinic. Can I help you?
Yes. I think I have the flu. I feel awful.
Would you like to make an appointment?
Yes. I'd like to see a doctor.
All right. Could you come in tomorrow afternoon at one o'clock?
Yes, I can come then. Oh! Should I bring any money?
No – just your ID and insurance card.
Now, could I have your name and insurance number?
Yes. My family name is Halal, H-A-L-A-L. My first name is Ali, A-L-I.
And my insurance number is 000-481-624.
OK. You're all set. Don't forget to bring your health insurance card when
you come in tomorrow.
All right, we'll see you tomorrow at one.
Yes, thank you… thank you very much. Bye.
Meeting Old Friends
Ming, look. I can't believe it! It's Dan. Hey! Dan, how are you?
Yolanda? Ming? Wow! I haven't seen you guys since graduation night!
I know. You look great!
Thanks. So do you!
So what have you been up to?
Well, I go to Faber College.
Really? Do you like it?
Yeah, so far. But I've been studying really hard.
Sure you have…
So, what's your major?
It's computer science.
Ah-hh-h. That makes sense. You always were good at math and science.
Thanks. Anyway, what have you guys been up to?
Well, I'm a sales rep for a publishing company.
No kidding! How do you like that?
Oh, I love it! I'm on the road a lot, but I get to meet some interesting
That's terrific. And how about you, Yolanda?
I'm studying pre-med at state College.
Wow – you can be my doctor! You always were good at science too.
Well, it was great seeing you both. Let's keep in touch from now on.
Email me sometime. Here's my address.
Ali! What's the matter? You look so sleepy!
Yeah! Can't you wake up this morning?
No, I can't! I can hardly keep my eyes open! I was up late last night.
My friend had a party. I only got about four hours of sleep.
Why didn't you sleep in this morning?
I have to meet my study group at the library. We have a big test next
A big test? Why didn't you study last night instead of going to the party?
Oh, it's OK. I studied a lot before the party.
Maybe that's not a good idea.
I read a research study. It said that if you don't get enough sleep after
you study, you may forget 30 percent of what you studied! Especially if
you studied something that is very complex.
Thirty percent? That's almost one-third!
Yes, that's a lot. Are you sure, Alicia?
Yes. Even two days after you study – if you don't get enough sleep, you
forget a lot. It's called being “sleep deprived”.
Well, I read that eating right can help you study.
You mean what you eat helps you study?
Yes, there are chemicals that help you stay alert. I think the best foods
are fish, eggs, soy, rice, and peanuts. So you should get enough sleep
And eat the right foods.
That sounds like good advice! I'll see you two later!
Where are you going, Ali?
Home to take a nap!
To clone or Not to clone?
Your dog is so adorable, Nancy. How old is he?
Wow, that's pretty old.
Yeah I just love him so much. I don't know what I'll do when he's gone.
Well you can clone him, you know.
Clone him? You're joking, right?
Yeah, of course. But actually, it is possible. Scientists in Korea have
cloned a dog, you know; I saw a picture of it in time magazine.
Really? I've heard of cloned sheep and mice and rabbits. But not pets
Oh yeah. Believe it or not, there is a company in California that offers a
pet cloning service. For fifteen thousand dollars you can have an exact
copy of your pet.
That's so weird. Actually it kind of scares me. Pretty soon, they'll start
cloning people and then…
Nah, I don't think that's going to happen. I think cloning will be used in
Like saving endangered species. For example, scientists could save the
giant panda and other animals before they become extinct.
Oh ,yeah, and another thing I heard that scientists will be able to clone
body parts. You know, just grow a new heart, or a new tooth.
Uh-huh. That's what stem cell research is all about, which is similar to
cloning. A lot of medical problems are going to be solved with that for
Well, I'm all for that. Especially if it can help us live longer.
Or if they can help your dog live longer, right?
On a College Campus
Excuse me. Could you tell me where Kimber Hall is?
Oh, you mean Campbell Hall?
Oh yeah, right.
Do you see that brown building over there?
Uh, behind the fountain?
Yeah, that's it. Come on, I'm going there too. Are you here for the
English placement test?
Yes. I am. How about you?
Actually, I'm one of the English teachers here.
Oh, really? Maybe I'll be in your class!
It's possible. what's your name?
Mariko Honda, but most people call me Mari. And you?
I'm Nancy Anderson. So, where are you from?
Aha. And, uh, how long have you been here?
Just three weeks.
Really? But your English sounds great!
Thanks. That's because my family used to come here every summer to
visit my grandmother when I was little. I can speak pretty well.
But now I want to go to college here, so I need to improve my skills,
especially writing. Yeah so, uh, that's why I signed up for this English
I see. Uh, what do you want to major in?
International business. My father has an import-export company, and he
does a lot of business here in the States.
Oh, I see.
And I also want to take art classes, because I'm really into art.
Art and business. Wow. That's an interesting combination. But, can't you
study those things in Japan?
Well, sure. But you have to speak good English these days to get ahead
in business. It's better for my career if I go to college here.
Well, here's Campbell Hall. Good luck on the placement exam. It was
nice meeting you, Mari.
Thanks. You too.
See you later.
Looking for a Summer Job
Thanks for coming with me to the Placement Center, Ali.
Don't mention it. It's nice to have your company. Besides, I need to find
a summer job, too.
What kind of job are you looking for, Ali?
I'm hoping to find one in my major, public health.
I'm sure you can. Do you have any experience in public health?
Yes, I do. I worked part-time in a lab in Maryland last summer.
That's great. I want to find a job writing for a local newspaper. I'd like to
be a reporter.
Your major is journalism, isn't it?
Uh-huh. I had a great job last summer when I was in Mexico City.
Really? What did you do?
I worked part-time for Excelsior. It's the biggest newspaper in Mexico.
What did you do there?
I wrote local news stories – you know, news about Mexico City. But
someday I want to write international news stories. Then I can travel
around the world and find out what people are like in other places.
That sounds wonderful. I'm sure you can do it.
Are there any jobs in public health on the bulletin board?
No, I don't see anything interesting.
You should try looking on the Web. There are some great job sites.
That's how I found the job in Mexico City.
That's a good idea. Do I search for “public health”?
Try “jobs in public health” or the names of specific jobs. I search for
I'll go to the computer lab right now and try that! See you later.
Wow. Look. It's raining cats and dogs again! I hate this weather. When
does winter break start?
Winter break? It's only October.
I know, but I'm sick of studying. I want to go someplace warm and lie
on the beach for a week. Someplace where it's sunny and dry. Florida or
Yeah. Where we can go swimming and snorkeling and get a great tan.
Now that's my idea of a perfect vacation.
Not mine. I can't swim very well, and I don't like lying in the sun.
Oh, yeah? How come?
I don't know. I just prefer the mountains, especially in winter. I love
snowboarding. In fact, I'm planning to go to Bear Mountain with some
friends in December. Do you guys want to come?
No, thanks. I went there last year. I was freezing the whole time.
Anyway, I don't know how to ski very well. Last year I fell about a
Peter, how about you?
Sorry, I'm like Jack. I don't want to go any place where it's below 70
By the way, what's the weather forecast for tomorrow?
The same as today. Cloudy, cold, and a 90 chance of rain.
Oh, no. I left my umbrella at the library. You can borrow mine. I've got
an extra one.
Hi, Alicia. How's it going?
Hi, Lee. I'm fine… but busy!
What are you doing?
I'm making a sign for Earth Day.
Earth Day! What's that?
On Earth Day, people think about pollution and other problems with the
Really! When is Earth Day?
… And is it every year?
Yes, it is. The first Earth Day was in 1970, and it now happens every
year, on April 22nd
. On that day, people talk and learn about problems
with the environment.
… like, how?
Well, one year. Thousands of people came to Washington, DC, to
support clean energy. In Italy, 150 towns and cities had Car-less
weekends when nobody could drive.
You mean Earth Day happens all over the world?
Yes, it sure does! Earth Day happens in many countries.
And what's going on here at the college?
There's a lot happening at the college. At the student union, there will be
exhibits on pollution, … Students will also plant some trees around the
So what are you planning to do on Earth Day?
I'm planning to give a speech about pollution. Also, I'm going to carry
What does it say? Save the Earth! That's great Alicia. Can I go with you
and help? I want to help the environment too.
Sure, Lee. Would you like to carry a sign too?
Yes, I sure would!
Touring a Health Club
Hi, I'm Adel. I'm sure you're going to like it here. Let me show you
around… Here's the weight room. We've got the newest machines, our
instructors can show you how to use them.
This is cool!
Yeah, I really need to start lifting weights.
And here is a cardio class…
I've never tried cardio. It's just dancing, isn't it?
Not really. Actually, they're working harder than you think.
And cardio is very good for your heart.
It sure is. But you should do it at least three times a week if you want to
be in good shape.
Well, I already jog three times a week.
You also have boxing and yoga classes here, don't you?
Yes. I'll give you a schedule of classes when we finish our tour. Now
here's our swimming pool.
Wow! Look at that woman in the middle land. She's really fast, isn't she?
Oh, yeah. That's Ellen, one of our instructors.
I'd like to take lessons from her.
You're not the only one. C’mon, I'll show you the showers in the locker
You know if you want to join our gym, you ought to do it before the end
of the month.
Well, because we have a special discount for students this month. Let's
go to my office and I'll tell you all about it.
At a Food Court
Wow! Look at all these different places to eat!
You said it! There are so many choices: American “fast food”, Chinese,
Italian, vegetarian! I can't decide what to eat!
What are you going to have, Dan?
I'm hungry! I'm going to the fast-food place. I want a double
cheeseburger and a large order of fries.
Ugh! How many cheeseburgers do you eat every week? You had a
couple at the picnic yesterday, didn't you?
Yeah, … yeah… so what? I like cheeseburgers!
I think Pat's worried about you.
Why? I'm healthy!
But cheeseburgers have a lot of fat.
And a lot of calories.
OK, OK! What are you going to have?
I'm going to have some tofu and rice at that Chinese place.
Oh, I forgot. You're a vegetarian, right?
Hmm. I think I'm going to have a salad.
Are you on a diet?
No diet – I just like to eat healthy food.
What are you going to have to drink?
A large cola.
A large cola? But there's lots of sugar and soda!
Dan's right and sugar is bad for your teeth.
All right! I'll have a diet cola. There's no sugar in that.
Great! And I'll have a salad too.
Finding a Place to Live
May I speak to Nancy, please?
Uh hi, uh, my name is Mari, and I'm calling about the room for rent. I
saw your ad at the campus housing office.
Oh, right. Ok, uh, are you a student?
Well, right now I'm just studying English, but I'm planning to start
college full-time in March.
I see. Where are you living now?
I've been living in a house with some other students, but I don't like it
Why? What's the problem?
Well, first of all, it's really noisy, and it's not very clean. The other
people in the house are real slobs. I mean they never lift a finger to clean
up after themselves. It really bugs me. I need a place that's cleaner and
Well, it's really quiet here. We're not home very much.
What do you do?
I teach English at the college.
Wait a minute! Didn't we meet yesterday at the placement exam?
Oh… you're the girl from Japan! What was your name again?
Right. What a small world!
It really is. By the way, who else lives in the house? The ad said there
are three people.
Well, besides me there's my husband, Andrew, and my cousin, Jeff. He's
a musician and a part-time student. Uh, are you OK with having male
Sure, as long as they're clean and not too noisy.
Don't worry. They're both easy to live with.
OK. Um, is the neighborhood safe?
Oh sure. We haven't had any problems, and you can walk to school from
Well, it sounds really nice. when can I come by and see it?
Can you make it this evening around five? Then you can meet the guys
Yeah, five o'clock is good. What's the address?
It's 3475 Hayworth Avenue. Do you know where that is?
No I don't.
OK. From University Village you go seven blocks east on Olympic and
Alfred, at the intersection of Olympic and Alfred, there's a stoplight turn
left and go up one and a half blocks. Our house is in the middle of the
block on the left.
That sounds easy.
Yeah, you can't miss it. Listen I've got to go. Someone's at the door. See
you this evening.
OK, see you later. Bye.
Arriving in San Francisco
Look, guys, up ahead! There's San Francisco! We're almost there!
Look at that skyline! what's that tall, triangular building? It looks like a
That's the Transamerica Building. It's one of San Francisco's landmarks.
It's almost as famous now as the Golden Gate Bridge, the cable cars,
Well, I can't wait to go to all those places… and Alcatraz, too.
You said it! Alcatraz used to be the prison where the most dangerous
criminals in the United States were put. Now, it's a really interesting
former prison and great place to tour.
Let's try to go there tomorrow. Then, we can also do something else
Dan! What's wrong with the car?
Yeah! Why are we going slower?
Oh, no! I think we have a flat tire!
We have a spare tire, don't we?
Yes, I think so. I'll pull over.
There it is. It is a flat tire. Now, who can help me change it?
I can't believe we have a flat tire… and just before we got to San
Oh, it'll take us just a few minutes to change it. Then, we can start to
explore the city!
What do people really mean?
Hi, Mari, how are you?
Fine, thanks. Um, is anyone sitting here?
No, have a seat.
Thanks. So how have you been?
Oh, you know, busy. I've got school, and work and I'm getting ready for
my brother's wedding next month.
Anyway, it's going to be a huge wedding and…
Oh, excuse me, uh, … Nancy! Over here!
Nancy, this is Yolanda. she works in the library. Yolanda, this is my
housemate, Nancy she teaches English here.
Nice to meet you, Yolanda.
You too. Well listen, actually, I've got to go. I have to be at work in 10
minutes. I'll see you soon, Mari. We'll go to a movie or something.
Sure. How about Thursday night?
Uh, I have to check my calendar. I'll call you, OK?
OK, see you.
Oh, I don't understand Americans.
Did you hear what she said? “I'll call you, we'll go to a movie.” But
every time I try to pick a specific day or time, she says she's busy she
has to check her calendar. And then she doesn't call.
Why do Americans say things they don't mean? They act so nice, like
they always say, “How are you”, but then they keep on walking and
don't even wait for your answer. They're so… how do you say it… twofaced?
I know it seems that way sometimes, Mari. But it's not true. It's just that
for Americans friendliness and friendship aren't always the same thing.
What do you mean?
Well, as you know, Americans can be very open and friendly. Like, they
invite you to sit down, they ask you questions, they tell you all about
their families. So naturally you think they're trying to make friends with
you. But actually, friendship, real friendship, doesn't happen so quickly.
So when people say “How are you”, they're just being polite? They don't
Not exactly. The thing you have to understand is that “How are you”
isn't a real question. It's more like a greeting, a way of saying hello.
Aha, I get it. And “Have a nice day” is just a friendly way to say goodbye?
Exactly. Now, you're catching on.
But I'm still in the dark about Yolanda. Does she want to be my friend or
It's hard to say. Maybe she's just too busy these days. I guess you'll just
have to be patient.
Hmm. That's good advice, I guess. Thanks.
Meeting new friends
Hi, how are you doing?
Hi. You're… Jack, right?
Yeah. And, sorry, you're…?
Peter. Peter Riley.
Oh, yeah, we met on campus last week. Peter, this is my friend, Ming
Lee. She's just moved into the building.
Hi, Ming Lee.
Nice to meet you. You can just call me Ming. Lee's my last name…
Oh. Ming. That sounds…
Oh! So you're from…
… From San Francisco. My parents came over from Hong Kong before I
Oh, that's cool. Actually, uh, I was thinking of taking Chinese this term.
Maybe you could help me.
Well, my Chinese really isn't very good…
Uh, listen, Peter. We're really hungry. Do you want to get something to
eat with us?
Sorry, I can't. I have to go meet my new roommate.
Oh, OK. Well, stop by sometime. I'm up in 212.
Hey, I'm on the same floor. I'm in 220.
Well, nice meeting you, Ming. I'm sure I'll see you soon.
See you later.
A Single Mother
It's Sharon and Joey!
Hi! Come on in. What's happening?
Jeff, can you do me a big favor? I just got a call from the office. They
want me to look into a computer problem right away. Would you mind
watching joey until I get back?
Sure, no problem. Is he asleep?
Yeah, he just fell asleep 10 minutes ago. He usually sleeps for a couple
of hours at this time of day. But if he wakes up, just give him a bottle.
Oh, what a cute baby! He's so little!
Mari. This is our neighbor. Sharon, and her son, Joey. Sharon, this is our
new roommate, Mari.
Nice to meet you.
You too, listen. I've got to take off. Thanks so much, Jeff, for helping me
Hey, Jeff, I didn't know you liked babies.
Well, Joey is special. I take care of him from time to time when Sharon's
busy. And then she does favors for me in return. Like last week she lent
me her car.
And her husband? Is he…
She's not married. I don't think she ever was, actually.
Nope, never. I think she's happy being a single mother.
Oh, is that pretty common in America?
Well, it's certainly becoming more and more common. Even Nancy used
to talk about it. You know. Before she got married.
Uh, what were you saying about me?
That you used to talk about having a baby by yourself before you met
Oh yeah, I worried that time was running out. You know, like, what if I
never got married…
Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I could never bring up a baby by myself. I
think it would be so difficult.
Yeah, raising a child is tough. I'm really lucky I met Andrew.
And, if you have a baby, you'll have Jeff here to help you with
We'll see. Speaking of babysitting, I'd better check up on Joey.
In the City
Peter, are you going downtown today?
Can you give me a ride? I have to run some errands.
Where do you need to go?
Uh, a lot of places. First, I have to go to the bank. Could you drop me off
at the corner of King Boulevard and Second Avenue?
King and Second? Oh, sure. I know where that is. But why are you
going to the bank? Why don't you use the ATM machine on campus?
Cause my debit card isn't working. I've got to get a new one. And the
cleaner’s is next door to the bank. I have to pick up some clothes there
Why don't you use the laundry room here in the building?
I'm not picking up laundry. It's dry cleaning. By the way, is there a
computer repair shop near there? I need to drop off my laptop.
Computer repair? Oh yeah. There's a Good Buy across the street from
the bank. They fix computers there.
Oh, that's convenient. So, what are you going to do downtown?
I'm going to the courthouse. I've got to pay a traffic ticket.
No kidding! I have to pay a ticket, too. I just got a ticket last week.
But, Kenji, you don't drive!
I know! I got a ticket for jaywalking!
Yeah. I didn't know it's illegal to cross in the middle of the street.
Shopping for Food
Well, I got a few groceries that aren't on the list.
I can see that we're not shopping for an army, you know.
I always do this when I'm hungry.
Well, let's see what you have here.
Some nice fresh strawberries for only $1.79 a pound.
Well, that's fine. They always have nice produce here. But why do you
have all these cookies?
Don't you like them?
Oh, I don't know… I hope you got a box of tofu.
I think I forgot. Where's the aisle with the Asian foods again?
I'll go get it.
Wait – this steak you got looks really expensive!
Well, it isn't. It's on sale for just $3.99 a pound.
And what's this? More ice cream? We already have a quart at home.
Why don't you put it back? Meanwhile, I'll get in line right here.
I'm sorry miss this is the express line, and it looks like you've got more
than 10 items. Oh, and we don't take checks here.
Finding the Right Apartment
I'm so stressed out. My landlord just raised my rent. I think I'll have to
Really? You know, my building has some vacancies. It's a pretty nice
place, and it's just 10 minutes from campus.
Oh yeah? How much is the rent for a studio?
There are no studio apartments in our building. My neighbor just moved
out of a one-bedroom. He paid $850 a month, I think.
That's not bad. Tell me more.
Well, one-bedrooms come with a bathroom, a kitchen, a fireplace in the
living room, pretty big clothes, and uh… Are you looking for a
furnished or unfurnished place?
Unfurnished. I have all my own stuff. What about parking and laundry?
There's no garage. You have to park on the street. But there is a laundry
Hmm, I think I'm interested. Could you give me the address?
Sure. It's 1213 Rose Avenue. The manager's name is Mr. Azizi. Call him
up or just stop by and talk to him.
Thanks, Ming. I'm going to do that tomorrow for sure.
Finding a Job
Hey, Jeff, what's going on?
Oh, I'm looking at the classified ads. It looks like I have to get a job.
I thought you had a job, at a computer store or something.
Yeah, but that's part-time. I need something full-time.
Really? But what about school? What about your band? How can you
Well, to tell you the truth, I'm probably going to drop out of school for a
while. I'm just not in the mood for studying these days. I'd rather spend
my time playing with my band. But my father won't support me if I'm
not in school.
I see… well, what kind of job do you want to get?
Well ideally, something involving music, like in a record store. But if
that's not possible… I don't know, but whatever I do, it'll be better than
my first job.
Oh, yeah. What was that?
Believe it or not, the summer after I finished high school I worked at
You? In a fast-food place? What did you do there?
I was a burger flipper. You know, I made hamburgers all day long.
That sounds like a pretty boring job!
It was the worst. And I haven't gone inside a burger Ranch since I quit
Hi. What's so funny?
Do you remember my job at the Burger Ranch?
Oh yeah. That was pretty awful. But actually, it doesn't sound so bad to
me right now.
Why, Nancy? What's wrong?
Oh, I'm just really, really tired. I'm teaching four different classes this
term, and two of them are really large. Sometimes I think I've been
teaching too long.
How long have you been teaching?
12 years. Maybe it's time to try something else.
Well, I've always wanted to be a writer. I could work at home…
Oh, don't listen to her, Mari. She always talks this way when she's had a
bad day at school. At least you have a good job, Nancy. Look at me: I'm
broke and dad won't lend me any more money…
Oh, stop complaining. If you're so poor, why don't you go back to the
Listen you too, stop arguing. Look at me! I can't work at all because I'm
an international student.
OK, OK! I'm sorry, Nancy. Tell you what. Let's go out to dinner. I'll
But you're broke!
All right, you pay!
Hey, listen to this. The average American watches four hours of TV a
A day? You're joking.
No, it says so right here in this newspaper. Hmm, I guess you're an
average American, Jack. You always have your TV on.
Come on. Are you saying I'm a couch potato?
Yeah, I really think watching T is a waste of time.
Oh, come on. Some programs are bad, like those soap operas. But what
about sports or the news? You watch those sometimes, don't you?
Well, actually, for the news, I prefer the newspaper. Or the internet.
First, because they give you a lot more information. And I can read them
anytime I want. Plus, I hate all the commercials.
I know what you mean. That's why, when the commercials come on, I
just turn down the volume or change channels.
Yeah, I noticed that. Channel surfing drives me crazy.
OK, next time you come over, I'll let you have the remote control.
Oh, that's so sweet. But I have a better idea. Next time I come over, let's
just turn the TV off.
Explaining a Sport
OK guys. Let's warm up and stretch. We've got to work on balance and
So Ming. When did you get into this Karate stuff?
Karate's Japanese. Ming's showing us Tea Kwon Do, and it's Korean.
Cool. So, what's the difference?
Tea Kwon Do uses hundreds of different kicking moves. But Karate…
well, Kenji, it sounds like you know something about Karate.
Yeah – Karate uses more punches and blocks, too. Maybe you've seen
guys break wooden boards with punches. You know, like… I learned
that when I was in school.
That's great. I wish I could do that. So, Ming, why did you get into Tea
I had a Korean friend in middle school and he said it could help me get
in shape and build my confidence. So I tried it, and I really liked it.
It looks like you succeeded.
Well, I'm still working on it. I've really improved my speed and power.
It also helps you focus – you'll see.
Awesome! Let's get started.
Hello? – Hi, Dad.
Jeff! How are you?
I'm fine Dad. How's Mom? Did she get over her cold?
Yes, she's fine now. She went back to work yesterday.
That's good. Um, Dad, I need to ask you something.
I'm sure, Son, What is it?
Well, uh, the truth is, I'm broke again. Could you lend me $200 just till
the end of the month?
Broke again? Jeff, when you moved in with Nancy and Andrew, you
said you could make ends meet. But this is the third time you've asked
me for help!
I know, I know. I'm sorry. But, see, my old guitar broke, and I had to
buy a new one. I can't play on a broken guitar, right?
Look Jeff, if you want to play in a band, that's OK with me. But you
can't keep asking me to pay for it!
OK, OK, you're right. But what do you think I ought to do? Everything
costs an arm and a leg around here.
Well, first of all, I think you'd better go on a budget. Make a list of all
your income and all your expenses. And then it's simple. Don't spend
more than you earn.
But that's exactly the problem! My expenses are always larger than my
Income. That's why I need to borrow money from you.
Then maybe you should work more hours at the computer store.
Dad! I already work 15 hours a week! How can I study and work and
find time to play with my band?
Come on, Jeff, when I was your age…
I know, I know. When you were my age you were already married and
working and going to school.
That's right. And if I could do it, why can't you?
Because I'm not you, Dad, that's why!
All right, Jeff, calm down. I don't expect you to be like me. But I can't
lend you any more money. Your mother and I are on a budget too, you
Maybe I should just drop out of school, work full-time, and play in the
band in the evenings. I can go back to school later.
I wouldn't do that if I were you.
Yeah, but you're not me, remember? It's my life!
All right, Jeff. Let's not argue. Why don't you think about this very
carefully and call me back in a few days. And in the meantime, you'd
better find a way to pay for that new guitar.
All right. Good-bye, son.
Using Technology to Stay in Touch
Am I interrupting?
It's OK, I was just catching up on my blog.
Oh yeah? What's it about?
Mostly it's about hip-hop. Like, here's a comment from a guy named
Hasan talking about, let's see… hip-hop Istanbul.
In Turkey? Turkish hip-hop
Sure. And here's one from my friend Hiroshi, the drummer in Tokyo.
Hmm. Maybe I should start a blog about learning English.
Well, it's a great way to meet new people, that's for sure. And all you
need is an Internet connection.
Well, speaking of the Internet, I wanted to ask your advice about
OK. What's up?
Well, I just got my cell phone bill for last month, and it was $160!
Yeah, I can't believe it. Cell phone calls are so expensive here.
Are they cheaper in Japan?
Much cheaper. And we use our cell phones for email, too. A lot of
people don't even own a computer.
It's amazing what you can do with cell phones these days. Talk, take
pictures, send email, … Yeah. But anyway Jeff, I need to find a cheaper
way to stay in touch with my parents and my friends in Japan. And I
heard there's a way you can call overseas for free using your computer.
Do you know anything about that?
Of course, it's a technology called Voice over Internet. I use it all the
How does it work?
Well, you need a computer with a sound card, if you've got that.
Yeah, I do …
And you also need a microphone and a headset.
Hmm. I don't have those.
No sweat, you can buy them at any electronics store.
OK. What else?
Well, then you'll need to download the software, which is free, and then
if the person you're calling installs the same software, there's no cost for
But what if they don't? Can I call from my computer to someone's
Yes. There's a charge for that, but it's a lot cheaper than using your cell
phone, believe me.
Could you show me how it works on your computer?
No, it's nighttime in Japan now. Can we do it in about three hours?
No problem. I'll be here.
Great. See you later.
What do you like to do for Fun?
Hey, Dan, how you doing?
Great, thanks. Hey I burned you some new CDs.
Hi. You were at our show last night, right?
Yeah, I was.
Sorry, Mari, this is Dan. Dan, this is Mari.
It's nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you, too.
Oh, let me get that. I'll be right back.
OK. So, Mari, did you have a good time at the club last night?
Yeah, it was pretty wild.
What did you think of our band?
Well, your music is great for dancing, but to tell you the truth, it was
kind of loud. I guess I really prefer jazz.
Do you go to concerts much?
No. not very often. I can't afford them. They're so expensive!
Yeah, I know what you mean. Well, what do you like to do for fun?
I love to eat! I love going to different ethnic restaurants and trying new
What's your favorite kind of food?
Well, Japanese, of course. What about you?
Well, I'm not crazy about sushi or sashimi. But I really like Mexican
Oh, I can't stand beans, and I don't like cheese. Uh… what about Indian
I don't care for it. Too spicy. Um… do you like American food? You
know, hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries, …
Yuck! All that fat and salt and sugar… We don't see eye to eye on
anything, do we?
Well, let's see. What's your opinion of modern art? There's a wonderful
show at the county museum right now.
To be honest, I don't get the modern stuff. I prefer 19th century art, you
know, Monet, van Gogh, Renoir.
Hmm. How do you feel about sports? Are you interested in football?
American football? I hate it!
How about tall musicians with curly hair?
OK, I got it. How about tall musicians with curly hair who invite you to
Finally, we agree on something!
A baby shower
Hi Jeff. Hi Sharon. Look what I got in the mail.
“Join us for a baby shower honoring, Nancy Anderson, April 5th,11 a.m.
hosted by Sharon Smith and Carolyn Freeman…”
Oh good, you got the invitation. So can you make it?
I think so, but, well, what is a baby shower exactly?
You know, it's a party for a woman who's going to have a baby. Um it's
like a welcoming ceremony for the new baby.
It's a party? Then why do you call it a shower?
Because the custom is to shower the woman with gifts for the baby. Get
I see. Are you invited too, Jeff?
No way! No man allowed!
Well, not exactly. Lots of baby showers include men these days, but
traditionally showers are hosted by a woman's girlfriends or female
relatives, and they're only for women.
Hmm. But isn't Nancy and Andrew's baby due at the end of May? And
this invitation says April 5th
Well. Yes. The custom is to have a shower before the baby is born, when
the woman is seven or eight months pregnant.
Very interesting. And everybody brings a gift?
Right. Something for the baby: you know, toys or clothes or something
for the baby's room.
OK. The invitation says it's for lunch, so…
Yeah, we'll have lunch, and afterwards we'll play games.
Games? What kind of games?
Silly games like bingo, or guessing games, or baby trivia games. And the
winners get small prizes.
It sounds like fun.
It is. And then, at the end of the party, there is usually a cake with baby
decorations, and then the mother-to-be opens her presents.
While the guests are still there?
Sure. That's my favorite part! Everybody gets to see the gifts.
And go “ooohh, aah…”
And see how happy the woman is.
Wow. That's so different from our custom. In Japan we usually don't
open a gift in front of guests.
Really? That is different.
Well. What kind of gift do you think I should get for her?
She's registered online, so you can see what she's already gotten and
what she still needs. Would you like me to write down the internet
address for you?
Sure. That would be great. Uh, is there anything I can do to help with
the party? Maybe do the flower arrangements or something?
Oh, thanks, but it's not necessary. Everything is all taken care of. Just
come and have fun.