Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Celebrities and their Pets!

Hilary SwankCelebrities and their Pets!
Miley Cyrus



From everyday people to Celebrities to Presidents, Pets are a big part of North American culture.  Pets are our friends.  Pet owners are always talking about their pets.  It usually makes for a great conversation topic.  Let’s take a look at some Celebrities talking about their pets. 

Question 1:  Do you have any pets?

Celebrities and their Pets!
Halle Berry: Yes, I can't imagine my life without animals. I have two dogs and three cats. Coming home and finding them all lined up at the door waiting for me has got to be one of the sweetest joys of my life.

Question 2:  How many pets do you have?

Miley Cyrus and dog


Miley Cyrus:  I have aaah lots of pets.  I have horses. I have how many dogs do I have. I can’t even count.  Aaah I think like 6 dogs.  I have 2 cats.   I just got a turtle that I found. And I got to keep him.  A turtle. And I have a pet chicken. And a bird. This is my lovebird. I actually have a couple of birds but this one is mine.  So I have lots and lots of animals. And I…we love them.  And we take very good care of them.  And just want to make sure that they are happy cause every animal deserves a good home.

Question 3: What is the name of your pet?

Mariah Carey and dog Mutley

Mariah Carey:  His full name is Jackson P. Mutley, but I call him Jack. He's such a star! He's been in my videos and built up his own fan base.

Question 4: What is your pet like?

Hilary Swank

Hilary Swank: I bring my dogs on set with me, and my little dog Karoo is smart as a whip. She knows where the craft-services [food] tables are, so anytime I can't find her, I know she has found her way to that area. She's a funny dog.







Conversational Speaking Practice Adaptation


Question 1:  Do you have any pets?
Answer 1:  Yes, I can't imagine my life without animals.

Question 2:  How many pets do you have?
Answer 2:  I have aaah lots of pets.

Question 3: What is the name of your pet?
Answer 3:  His full name is Jackson P. Mutley.

Question 4: What is your pet like?
Answer 4:  My little dog Karoo is smart as a whip. (smart as a whip = very intelligent)



Practice Example ideas:

Ex. 1
Question 1:  Do you have any pets?
Answer 1:  Yes, I can't imagine my life without animals.

Question 2:  How many pets do you have?
Answer 2:  I have a dog.

Question 3: What is the name of your pet?
Answer 3:  His name is Marley.

Question 4: What is your pet like?
Answer 4:  My dog is so friendly and smart.

Ex. 2
Question 1:  Do you have any pets?
Answer 1:  Yes, I can't imagine my life without animals.

Question 2:  How many pets do you have?
Answer 2:  I have 2 pets. One dog and a cat.

Question 3: What are the names of your pets?
Answer 3:  The dog’s name is Rusty and the cat’s name is Tiger.

Question 4: What are your pets like?
Answer 4:  My dog is energetic and my cat is cuddly.


Listen to Miley Cyrus Talk about her pets!


 To all the pet lovers out there, Have a great week!

Celebrity English












Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution

Jamie Oliver Chef!
Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver is an award winning British Celebrity Chef.  Jamie is a well known TV personality, restaurateur, writer, and promoter of healthy food choices.  Jamie Oliver is on a mission to transform the way we feed ourselves, and our children.

 Jamie Oliver Speech at a TED Conference

(adapted/shorter version)


Jamie Oliver: Sadly, in the next 18 minutes when I do our chat, four Americans that are alive will be dead from the food that they eat.

My name's Jamie Oliver. I'm 34 years old. I'm from Essex in England and for the last seven years I've worked fairly tirelessly to save lives in my own way. I'm not a doctor; I'm a chef, I don't have expensive equipment or medicine. I use information, education.

I profoundly believe that the power of food has a primal place in our homes that binds us to the best bits of life. We have an awful, awful reality right now. America, you're at the top of your game. This is one of the most unhealthy countries in the world.

(to be at the top of one’s game = to be at one’s best)

Right? The statistics of bad health are clear, very clear. We spend our lives being paranoid about death, murder, homicide, you name it; it's on the front page of every paper, CNN (American TV News Station).
 
Fact: Diet-related disease is the biggest killer in the United States, right now, here today. This is a global problem. It's a catastrophe. It's sweeping the world. England is right behind you, as usual.

(Audience Laughter)

(a catastrophe = a tragic event or situation)
(to sweep something = to move across something or to become common)

 We need a revolution. Mexico, Australia, Germany, India, China, all have massive problems of obesity and bad health. Think about smoking. It costs way less than obesity now. Obesity costs you Americans 10 percent of your healthcare bills, 150 billion dollars a year. In 10 years, it's set to double: 300 billion dollars a year. And let's be honest, guys, you ain't got that cash.

(Audience Laughter)

(obesity =  very fat in a unhealthy way)
(ain't got =   have not - usage Ain't is usually regarded as an error or poor education, but it is common in the very informal speech)

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution


I came here to start a food revolution that I so profoundly believe in. We need it. The time is now. We're in a tipping-point moment. I've been doing this for seven years. I've been trying in America for seven years. Now is the time when it's ripe -- ripe for the picking. I went to the eye of the storm. I went to West Virginia, the most unhealthy state in America. Or it was last year. We've got a new one this year, but we'll work on that next season.

(Audience Laughter)

(a revolution = a sudden, extreme, or complete change in the way people live, work, etc.)

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution
 
Let's start with the Main Street. Fast food has taken over the whole country; we know that. The big brands are some of the most important powers, powerful powers, in this country. Supermarkets as well. Big companies. Big companies. Thirty years ago, most of the food was largely local and largely fresh. Now it's largely processed and full of all sorts of additives, extra ingredients, and you know the rest of the story. Portion size is obviously a massive, massive problem. Labeling is a massive problem. The labeling in this country is a disgrace. They want to be self -- they want to self-police themselves. The industry wants to self-police themselves. What, in this kind of climate? They don't deserve it. How can you say something is low-fat when it's full of so much sugar?

(massive = very large)

Home. The biggest problem with the home is that used to be the heart of passing on food, food culture, what made our society. That ain't happening anymore. And you know, as we go to work and as life changes, and as life always evolves, we kind of have to look at it holistically -- step back for a moment, and re-address the balance. It ain't happening, hasn't happened for 30 years.

(Audience Laughter)

(ain't = isn’t)
(holistically = relating to or concerned with the whole or with complete systems rather than with the analysis of, treatment of, or dissection into parts.)

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution

Before I crack into my rant, which I'm sure you're waiting for ...

(Audience Laughter)

Now, the reality is, the food that your kids get every day is fast food, it's highly processed, there's not enough fresh food in there at all. You know, the amount of additives, E numbers, ingredients you wouldn't believe -- there's not enough veggies at all. French fries are considered a vegetable. Pizza for breakfast. They don't even get given crockery. Knives and forks? No, they're too dangerous. They have scissors in the classroom, but knives and forks? No. And the way I look at it is: If you don't have knives and forks in your school, you're purely endorsing, from a state level, fast food, because it's handheld. And yes, by the way, it is fast food: It's sloppy joes, it's burgers, it's wieners, it's pizzas, it's all of that stuff. Ten percent of what we spend on healthcare, as I said earlier, is on obesity, and it's going to double. We're not teaching our kids. There's no statutory right to teach kids about food, elementary or secondary school.

(crockery = British English for plates, bowls, cups)
(double = twice the amount)

I want to tell you about something, I want to tell you about something that kind of epitomizes the trouble that we're in, guys. OK? I want to talk about something so basic as milk. Every kid has the right to milk at school. Your kids will be having milk at school, breakfast and lunch. Right? They'll be having two bottles. OK? And most kids do. But milk ain't good enough anymore. Because someone at the milk board, right -- and don't get me wrong, I support milk -- but someone at the milk board probably paid a lot of money for some geezer to work out that if you put loads of flavorings and colorings and sugar in milk, right, more kids will drink it. Yeah.

(Jamie Claps)

(loads of = lots of )

And obviously now that's going to catch on. The apple board is going to work out that if they make toffee apples they'll eat more apples as well. Do you know what I mean? For me, there ain't no need to flavor the milk. Okay? There's sugar in everything. I know the ins and outs of those ingredients. It's in everything. Even the milk hasn't escaped the kind of modern-day problems. There's our milk. There's our carton. In that is nearly as much sugar as one of your favorite cans of fizzy pop, and they are having two a day. So, let me just show you. We've got one kid, here, having, you know, eight tablespoons of sugar a day. You know, there's your week. There's your month. And I've taken the liberty of putting in just the five years of elementary school sugar, just from milk. Now, I don't know about you guys, but judging the circumstances, right, any judge in the whole world, would look at the statistics and the evidence, and they would find any government of old guilty of child abuse. That's my belief.

(Audience Applause)
 
(catch on = to become fashionable or popular)
(Applause = a show of approval or appreciation at a play, speech, sporting event, etc., in which people strike their hands together over and over)

Now, if I came up here, and I wish I could come up here today and hang a cure for AIDS or cancer, you'd be fighting and scrambling to get to me. This, all this bad news, is preventable. That's the good news. It's very, very preventable. So, let's just think about, we got a problem here, we need to reboot. Okay so, in my world, what do we need to do? Here is the thing, right, it cannot just come from one source. To reboot and make real tangible change, real change, so that I could look you in the white of the eyes and say, "In 10 years time, the history of your children's lives, happiness -- and let's not forget, you're clever if you eat well, you know you're going to live longer -- all of that stuff, it will look different. OK?"

(tangible = real or not imaginary; able to be shown, touched or experienced)

So, supermarkets. Where else do you shop so religiously? Week in, week out. How much money do you spend, in your life, in a supermarket? Love them. They just sell us what we want. All right. They owe us, to put a food ambassador in every major supermarket. They need to help us shop. They need to show us how to cook quick, tasty, seasonal meals for people that are busy. This is not expensive. It is done in some, and it needs to be done across the board in America soon, and quick. The big brands, you know, the food brands, need to put food education at the heart of their businesses. I know, easier said than done. It's the future. It's the only way.

(Week in, week out = week after week)
(across the board = happening or having an effect on people at every level and in every area)

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution

Fast food. With the fast-food industry you know, it's very competitive. I've had loads of secret papers and dealings with fast food restaurants. I know how they do it. I mean basically they've weaned us on to these hits of sugar, salt and fat, and x, y, and z, and everyone loves them. Right? So, these guys are going to be part of the solution. But we need to get the government to work with all of the fast food purveyors and the restaurant industry, and over a five, six, seven year period wean of us off the extreme amounts of fat, sugar, fat and all the other non-food ingredients.

Now, also, back to the sort of big brands: Labeling, I said earlier, is an absolute farce and has got to be sorted. OK, school. Obviously in schools we owe it to them to make sure those 180 days of the year, from that little precious age of four, til 18, 20, 24, whatever, they need to be cooked proper, fresh food from local growers on site. OK? There needs to be a new standard of fresh, proper food for your children. Yeah?

(Audience Applause)

(farce = a joke or an empty or patently ridiculous act, proceeding, or situation)

Under the circumstances, it's profoundly important that every single American child leaves school knowing how to cook 10 recipes that will save their life. Life skills.

(Audience Applause)

(Under the circumstances = in a particular situation; because of the circumstances)

Now, look, if we do all this stuff, and we can, it's so achievable. You can care and be commercial. Absolutely. But the home needs to start passing on cooking again, for sure. For sure, pass it on as a philosophy. And for me it's quite romantic, but it's about if one person teaches three people how to cook something, and they teach three of their mates, that only has to repeat itself 25 times, and that's the whole population of America. Romantic, yes, but most importantly, it's about trying to get people to realize that every one of your individual efforts makes a difference. We've got to put back what's been lost. Huntington Kitchen. Huntington (American town name), where I made this program, you know, we've got this prime-time program that hopefully will inspire people to really get on this change. I truly believe that change will happen. Huntington's Kitchen. I work with a community. I worked in the schools. I found local sustainable funding to get every single school in the area, from the junk, onto the fresh food: six-and-a-half grand per school.

(Audience Applause)

( a grand = a 1000 dollars - slang measurement for money ; 5 grand = 5 thousand dollars)

And look, I know it's weird having an English person standing here before you talking about all this. All I can say is: I care. I'm a father, and I love this country, and I believe truly, actually, that if change can be made in this country, beautiful things will happen around the world. If America does it, I believe other people will follow. It's incredibly important.

(Audience Applause)

My wish is for you to help a strong, sustainable movement to educate every child about food, to inspire families to cook again, and to empower people everywhere to fight obesity.
 
Thank you.

(Audience Applause)



(sustainable = able to continue over a period of time)
(to empower = to promote the self-actualization or influence of someone)

Jamie Oliver: Food Revolution
 
Jamie Oliver Website Link http://www.jamieoliver.com/

Original Speech at TED Conference Link http://www.ted.com/talks/jamie_oliver.html


Celebrity English language and Culture
  
Alex
Celebrity English


Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Fergie: Chilling!

Fergie
Fergie
Fergie the duchess of pop! American singersong-writer, fashion designer, TV host and actress.  Very well known for her work with the hip-hop group ‘The Black Eyed Peas’.  Let’s check out what she does on her day off. 

Interview
Question: What do you usually do when you aren’t working?

Fergie: At home…I'll lie out by the pool, and Josh (Josh Duhamel-Fergie’s husband) hits golf balls to Zoe (Fergie’s dachshund) as we listen to music. In the evening, we'll order Indian or Chinese, turn on the fire pit, and talk about old times.  We're pretty chill.


Fergie’s Speaking Style

Fergie answers the question with a lot of detail so the listener can imagine her usual day off from work in the daytime and evening.   She paints a nice, relaxing but fun picture of her home life: by the poolside listening to music while her husband plays with the dog.    The evening ‘picture’ finishes with take out food, sitting by a fire, talking about old times.  It is very inviting for the listener.  Fergie has given us a glimpse of her personal life in a rich storybook fashion. 
With regard to grammar usage, Fergie starts by explaining a usual day with the simple future tense ‘will’ to predict or make an assumption about her next days off.  It isn’t 100% but this is how she usually spends her leisure time.  The verbs after follow simple present tense for a habitual/common feeling.

Fergie: “At home…I'll (=will) lie out by the pool, and Josh (Josh Duhamel-Fergie’s husband) hits golf balls to Zoe (Fergie’s dachshund) as we listen to music.”

Once again, Fergie follows the same pattern for describing her evening. 

Fergie: “In the evening, we'll order Indian or Chinese, turn on the fire pit, and talk about old times.”

Then she sums up her feelings about the picture she has painted for the listener with the casual expression:  “We're pretty chill.”

Casual, Common Speaking Expression

to chill = to relax, hang out, take it easy; not doing much

Feeling of the Language

As a listener, I would like to spend time with Fergie, her husband, and her dog by the poolside.  Moreover, an evening of food, fire pit, and people reminiscing can be quite cozy.  Her talking style is inviting and rich in imagery.  You could almost say ‘idyllic’.  It is also pronounced because she uses a future tense to begin the morning and evening imagery.  Fergie’s English speaking style is high class.  Quite often, people respond to this question using one or two sentences:
Example of common 1~2 sentence answer style
“Well, I usually  ________.  And then, I often  _________.  (That is how I spend my time off from work).
This pattern is also great/useful but not quite up to the level of Fergie “The Dutchess of Pop”!

Casual Conversation Practice

Question: What do you usually do when you aren’t working?

Answer: At home…I'll lie out by the pool, and Josh  hits golf balls to Zoe  as we listen to music. In the evening, we'll order Indian or Chinese, turn on the fire pit, and talk about old times. We're pretty chill.

Ex. 1

Question: What do you usually do when you aren’t working?

Answer: At home…I'll read in the backyard, and my husband weeds the garden  as we listen to music. In the evening, we'll  make dinner together. We're pretty chill.

Ex. 2

(Simpler style)
Question: What do you usually do when you aren’t studying at school?

Answer: At home…I'll play video games with my best friend and we watch our favorite TV shows.

Have a good one! And Enjoy some of Fergie’s Biggest hits!









Celebrity Language and Culture






Alex
Celebrity English

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Josh Duhamel: New Year’s Resolutions

Josh Duhamel
                                               Josh Duhamel



The party is over. We have said, ‘goodbye’ to the old year of 2011 and ‘hello’ to the new year of 2012.  Now, we reflect on the past year and decide what changes we want/need to make.  We create resolutions to ‘fix’ or achieve these changes.  Also, many people use this opportunity to set goals they want to reach in the up incoming year.  For the early weeks of January, people will be talking about their resolutions and how they achieve them.



Josh Duhamel, plays ‘Sam Ricker” in the newly released movie New Year’s Eve.
He is an American actor who has been in several movies and TV shows such as “Transformersand All my Children. Let’s check out Josh Duhamel’s New Year’s Resolutions.

Actual Video Interview 
(New Year's Eve Resolutions excerpt- Start from 2:40 – End)




New Year's Eve Resolutions-Transcript - (2:40 – End)

Interviewer:  Are you a resolutions kind of guy or not your thing?

Josh Duhamel:  Aah Yeah I am. I don’t know if I would call them resolutions but they are goals that I try to set every year.  I write specifically what I want to do professionally and personally.

Interviewer:  Wow! So you actually make a list.

Josh Duhamel:  Yeah and I put it up on the board. So I have to look at it. So that I am constantly working toward it whatever it is.

Interviewer:  Very cool! Any big ones this year?

Josh Duhamel:  Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn how to rodeo.

Interviewer:  Very fun.

Josh Duhamel:  Yeah I want to learn how to tie a steer. No.

Interviewer:  That would be a pretty cool one wouldn’t.

Josh Duhamel:  That would be but I am not that manly unfortunately.

New Year’s Resolutions  

Goal setting and motivational technique:Goal setting and Motivational Technique: Josh uses a common ‘goal setting’ technique.  He categorizes his goals under the titles ‘professional’ and ‘personal’.  Next, he makes a list and puts it up on a (cork) board as a daily reminder or daily motivator.  Josh follows up with more details as to ‘why’ he uses this technique (daily reminder/motivator).


Future Goal:  Naturally, the interviewer asks about Josh Duhamel’s goals for 2012.  Josh uses a common English pattern to express the future:
Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn how to rodeo.  (be + going to + infinitive)

Straightforward and natural English but then he puts in a twist.  The listener finds out that this isn’t true.  Josh creates another meaning by using the word ‘No”. This can turn his positive sentences into a negative or opposite idea in conversation:



Positive sentences:
Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn how to rodeo.
Yeah I want to learn how to tie a steer.

Negative/opposite idea:
Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn how to rodeo.
Yeah I want to learn how to tie a steer. No            
Same English
I was just joking. I don’t want to learn how to rodeo and I don’t want to learn how to  tie a steer. 

Josh uses a simple joke form to convey the idea that he doesn’t want to tell the interviewer/listener his true goals for 2012.  Too bad! However, we were able to see his method or technique for creating professional and personal achievement. 

 Conversational Speaking Style Practice

Note: Interview adapted for common conversation practice.

Interviewer:  Are you a resolutions kind of guy/girl or not your thing?

Answer:  Aah…yeah I am.  I don’t know if I would call them resolutions but they are goals that I try to set every year.  I write specifically what I want to do professionally and personally.

Interviewer:  Very cool! Any big ones this year?

Josh Duhamel:  Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn how to rodeo.

Interviewer:  Very fun.

Ex. 1
Interviewer:  Are you a resolutions kind of guy/girl or not your thing?

Answer:  Aah…yeah I am.  I don’t know if I would call them resolutions but they are goals that I try to set every year.  I write my goals down and tell my friends about them.

Interviewer:  Very cool! Any big ones this year?

Josh Duhamel:  Aaah Yes, I’m going to learn a new language.

Interviewer:  Very fun.

Ex. 2
Interviewer:  Are you a resolutions kind of guy/girl or not your thing?

Answer:  Aah…yeah I am.  I don’t know if I would call them resolutions but they are goals that I try to set every year.  I try to find a friend who has the same resolutions so that we can help each other.

Interviewer:  Very cool! Any big ones this year?

Josh Duhamel:  Aaah Yes, I’m going to lose weight by going to the gym 3 times a week.

Interviewer:  Very fun.

Movie Trailer with Josh Duhamel
Have a good week practicing! See you next week!

Celebrity English Language and Culture
Alex
Celebrity English