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English Speaking Skills: Come and Get It: Memorable Colloquial Phrases From All Sections of Newspapers

English Speaking Skills: Come and Get It: Memorable Colloquial Phrases From All Sections of Newspapers

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Don’t you love it when something you enjoy has an additional benefit? It’s like “Buy one, get one free”  or BOGO as our media likes to call it.

I love to read newspapers. Now colloquial phrases leap out at me when I am looking for them.

If you like popular television or movie media, get out your pencil and start writing down the colloquial phrases you hear.

Because sports sections are full of hero stories (the player or coach or team owner who has overcome trial and bad times to play like a champion), they are incredibly excellent for colloquial phrases.

The rest of the sections have wonderful current colloquial phrases also. Check these out (in other words, examine these) from “The Denver Post”:

  • … and writing about the famous – such as lawyer Steve Farber and then-Denver Mayor Wellington Webb – and the nearly famous (“nearly famous,” in other words, people who did extraordinary things but did not stay in the news for long. In other words, “nearly famous” are people who are famous for  15 minutes.  “15 minutes,” in other words for a brief amount of time.  For example, if the local newspaper runs a picture of you getting a hug from President Obama, then you are “famous for 15 minutes” or are “nearly famous.”)
  • “There have been efforts to attract minorities to public service, but the current roster still doesn’t come close to mirroring the city’s Latino community.” (“doesn’t come close to mirroring,” in other words, the numbers of minorities  of Latino descent who serve as policemen and women and firemen and women are not the same proportion  as (or mirror) those who live in the community.)
  • With diversity will come trust. [In other words, when there are a good number of minorities serving as policemen and women, then the people of the community who are of that same ethnic diversity (say Latino, Asian, for example South Korean, Chinese, Middle Eastern, etc) will trust them more.]
  • VR is going mainstream but most PCs can’t handle it (In other words, many Virtual Reality (VR) games are being readied to be launched in 2016 (“going mainstream”), but most personal computers don’t have the graphics capability to run them (“can’t handle it”).
  • I noticed a few puzzled looks when I looked around the room. (In other words, there were people in the gathering who seemed to not understand what was going on or happening in the room.)
  • Who brings live animals to a white elephant party? (“white elephant party,” in other words, a party where the major entertainment is people giving one another gifts that make people in this culture laugh. Typically those are items sold as gift items which are unusual in appearance (such as color or size or odor) or unusual in what they do (such as an electric or battery operated apple peeler).
  • “All this would be fine except for how I somehow have become her own personal Google.” (“I have become her own personal Google,” in other words, another person is coming to me, an expert, and asking me to give her answers to lots and lots of factual questions.)
  • … she’s using too much of my good nature (In other words, another person is asking me to do too much for her.  I like to do kind favors, but she is asking for too many favors.)

Be sure to watch our English Speech Tips videos and Accent Reduction Tip videos  for more English pronunciation and accent reduction exercise.

Check out our new advanced weekly speech tip program, our new subscription called ClearTalk Weekly, www.subscription.cleartalkmastery.com

 

 

Rerun from Jan 20, 2016

What to do With the Energy and Adrenaline When Presenting

What to do With the Energy and Adrenaline When Presenting

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Energy is awesome during a presentation. Use that energy by:

  • Gesturing for emphasis
  • Gesture for excitement

 

 

 

 

 

Rerun from Feb 8, 2016

English Speaking Skills: For Sure Current Colloquial Phrases

English Speaking Skills:  For Sure Current Colloquial Phrases

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Students have asked me every year for some current good colloquial phrases.  I haven’t been able to provide them easily.  Getting them from current popular media of movies and television shows would mean hours of viewing with the specific purpose of directly listening for them and writing them down right away.  That would be a sure-fire way to eliminate the pleasure of the entertainment.

My dearest Grant would get me books with colloquial phrases whenever he saw them in thrift stores.   No problem at all for me, as a well-read, educated person to easily determine which colloquial phrases were current… most of the time.  That is, some of the time I would be wrong.  In other words, some of the time I would deem a colloquial phrase to be current because I used it as a child.  Or I heard it in a classic movie from the 1930’s 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s….. You get the picture. But nobody, but an older person (older than 30 years old) would understand what the colloquialism meant, except from context.

However, today I am pleased to present several more colloquial phrases – current and popular – gotten from the local  city newspaper.  As you probably know, you can find colloquial phrases in all sections, but especially from the sports section.

  • Throwing as though he had turned back the clock 10 years… (In other words, throwing the football as if he were 10 years younger and had the top skill he had 10 years ago)
  • Manning provided the spark in a 27-20 victory … (In other words, Manning played and led the team so well that his team won the game with a score of 27 winner to 20 loser)
  • … while B.O. did a slow burn on the bench… (In other words, while another player sat out the game on the bench feeling frustrated that he was not playing with his team… and being the hero of his team and fans in the football stadium)
  • “Beats me what happens next. The weird science in the crazy trajectory of Denver’s season could make Stephen Hawkins give up and order a pizza, so don’t ask coach Gary Kubiak to explain it.”  (In other words, events have been so unpredictable that the future is impossible to predict.  So many strange things have happened (weird science and crazy trajectory).  So many strange things that even a renown scientist, Stephen Hawkins, who has tried to explain many outer space phenomena using scientific principles —  he would give up and stop trying to explain this sports team’s sequence of events)

Be sure to watch our English Speech Tips videos and Accent Reduction Tip videos  for more English pronunciation and accent reduction exercise.

Check out our new advanced weekly speech tip program, our new subscription called ClearTalk Weekly, www.subscription.cleartalkmastery.com

 

Rerun from Jan 13, 2016

Benefits of Focusing on One Person at a Time in the Audience

Benefits of Focusing on One Person at a Time in the Audience

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Great benefits come when you focus your eyes on one person at a time:

  • You control your nervousness by getting back to doing what you do best – talking one-to-one
  • You communicate your connection and rapport to people
  • Helps you read your audience by seeing the reaction of individuals

 

Rerun from Feb 1, 2016

English Speaking Skills: Finally! An Awesome Way to Find Excellent Colloquial Phrases

English Speaking Skills:  Finally! An Awesome Way to Find Excellent Colloquial Phrases

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How to make your English speech – spoken or written—more interesting?

It’ s easy: Use current colloquial phrases.

The problem is knowing which ones to use.  Books are written in every decade of the last half-century about colloquialisms and what they mean and often their history.  However, huge numbers of those are not currently used.

What’s the good of a colloquialism if no one understands what it means.

Voila, here it is, the solution to the problem of where to find current colloquial expressions and words and turns of phrase to spice or enliven your English communication.

I have found awesome colloquialisms in newspapers, in all the sections, and especially in the sports pages of moderately large and large American newspapers (for example “The Denver Post,”  “Boulder Daily Camera,” “Miami Herald,” “Washington Post,” “New York Times”).

Upon examining other all the sections of the above-named newspapers, I found written there excellent colloquial phrases.

But in truth, my favorite colloquial words and phrases have been in the sports page.  They are more prolific there.  These colloquial phrases and words are ones spoken by sports figures – players, coaches, important staff.  And these words and phrases were deemed to be exactly right to catch peoples’/readers’ attention by the writers of the articles. (BTW, I believe some of the best on-staff writers at newspapers are sports writers.   Sports sections are often the most popular sections of paper and online newspapers.)

Here are some examples of colloquial phrases and words found just this week in the Sports Section of “The Denver Post”:

  • Back on Top (In other words, the team is now ranked number one or best team)
  • Magic man makes it all happen (In other words, a very talented person’s actions wins the game)
  • “Just my gut told me to turn it over to Peyton… It’s going to take everyone.” (In other words, my instincts told me to have Peyton come in to play the game. To win is going to take the contribution of every person on our team)
  • …. and made sense of a day that tip-toed toward chaos (In other words, the actions happening on that day seemed to be moving toward random actions/chaos which means big failure or losing the game)
  • Manning did so, producing another indelible memory and a victory (“indelible memory” or in other words, an action that was so spectacular that every person who saw or even read about it would remember it forever)

Why do people love colloquial phrases?  Because they say in a few short phrases with concrete and memorable imagery what conventional language takes double or triple the number of words to communicate. (Notice that last sentence is 26 words in length… scandalous, or in other words, not good, not at all good because of too many words!)

Get a good colloquial phrase and you will sweeten the day!

Be sure to watch our English Speech Tips videos and Accent Reduction Tip videos  for more English pronunciation and accent reduction exercise.

Check out our new advanced weekly speech tip program, our new subscription called ClearTalk Weekly, www.subscription.cleartalkmastery.com

 

 

Rerun from Jan 6, 2016