Saturday, 27 February 2010

just following my nose

I have caught a bad cold. I wish it was a flu - something more obvious and easier to deal with. The treatment of flu is as plain as the nose in your head: more time in bed, more hot tea with lemon and honey, and some paracetamol to lower the temperature. But with the common cold the thing is not as easy. No fever, perhaps just the temperature increased by some minor quantity, no collapsing in the middle of the room; seemingly, you only have a running nose. But these are just the appearances. When your nose is blocked and you think that your head is about to explode, you're devoid of oxygen and nearly in danger of suffocation (at least that's what a hypohondriac would insist on). The whole world seems to have shrunk to the size of your nostrils, as this is the only subject you can really focus on. All the sane part of humanity is out, walking, bicycling and warming their faces up in the first and long awaited rays of sun - like my husband and kids, for example. But all that fun is not for you; anyway, you see no further than your nose.

follow one's nose - kierować się instynktem
as plain as the nose in your face = completely obious
(common) cold - przeziębienie
collapse - tu: zemdleć, osunąć się na ziemię
shrink-shrank-shrunk - skurczyć się
nostrils - nozdrza
sane - zdrowy (psychicznie)
see no further than one's nose - widzieć tylko czubek własnego nosa

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

and the winner is...

Since there were no right answers to the quiz question (in fact, there were no answers at all), the prize goes to me. Which means I'll keep it to myself plus I'll keep it secret. No use guessing what it was, too late, so to speak.

But I won't be so nasty to keep the right answer to my own self, therefore, if you haven't googled that one yet, El Chombo's song is in "gibberish" (here you'll find the full wikipedia definition). I can only summarize that this is a nonsense language, a category which my 6-year old daughter tends to use when she wants to sound foreign, with only that difference that she calls her self-made language "hamburgerski" (hamburegrian?). It doesn not derive from the word "hamburger", as she's never eaten one in her lifetime and hopefully, she never will. Although, on the other hand, it's likely she's seen a McD commercial on tv.

On our first and only, so far, class with the FCE students, the topic of old devices was mentioned - like walkmans, for example. So, to continue on that topic, I myself remember another antique equipment: a tape recorder by Kasprzak, on which, as a child, I recorded my own songs in gibberish. "Babuleebes blow" was one of them. But it's another story.

so to speak - rzec by można
derive - wywodzić się
it's likely = it's very probable
first and only - pierwsza i jedyna

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Quiz! Quiz! Multilingual Quiz!

On this last Saturday of carnival (from Latin "carnus" = body) I've prepared a really difiicult quiz, based on listening comprehension. Your task is to say what are the lirycs of this song about:

The winner will be offered an award prepared by the author of this blog. Good luck!

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

we will dye for you

My intermediate Tue/Thu students found it funny, that there's a law in Kentucky saying that if you want to sell chicks or ducklings, you mustn't dye them a different colour*. The very idea od dying chicks seems weird, as it is more probable that you might wish to dye your hair blond or your clothes - violet, which the woman's wear brands try to make us believe is so fashionable these days. The issue of dying, in turn, made me remember one advert on the window display of a dry cleaner's in Baker Street, London, not far away from The Sherlock Holmes Museum:

Long live the copyrighters! Truly we live in the concptual age of creativity.

dye - farbować (pronounced the same way as "die" = umierać)

e.g. dye one's hair blond

woman's wear brands - marki odziezy damskiej


in turn - z kolei

dry cleaner's - pralnia chemiczna

*in the text from The English Result Intermediate, p. 48