Speak English Salon

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Comic – Drinking Problem ★★

I can’t remember where I found this, but it cracked me up when I first read it.

cracked me up: 大笑いした

have drinking problem: アル中である


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Menu ★★

Black Bear Diner is a restaurant chain in the western United States, which serves homestyle and “old-fashioned” comfort foods. The first restaurant was opened in Mount Shasta, California in 1994.

Black Bear decor is a rustic motif with “over-the-top bear paraphernalia” and each restaurant is decorated with a 3.7 m black bear carving. The menu is in the form of an old newspaper; the portions unbelievably huge.

I visited a Black Bear a few years back while traveling through Central Oregon. Dying for a beer, I was disappointed to learn that the restaurant didn’t serve alcohol. No ales, no porters, no stouts, no lagers. Nothing! In a state which boasts of its microbrews, this is a sacrilege. I asked the waitress if we were in a dry town to which she replied with a pained look, “Something like that.” I ordered a chocolate malt instead, my first in about ten years.

I’ve included a page from Black Bear’s breakfast menu. Note how there aren’t any pictures. One of the nice things about restaurants here in Japan is that most menus come with photographs or illustrations so you know what to expect when you order something. Let me tell you, I was dumbfounded by everything that was hauled over to and then dumped on our table. The portions! You could have fed a nuclear family in Japan with each dish.


Speak! English Salon/スピーク英会話サロン



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The Right Word – Heavy ★★★

Trying to move a refrigerator out of a third-floor apartment is difficult because it is cumbersome, which means that it is so heavy and bulky that it becomes unwieldy or awkward to handle. Cartons filled with books, on the other hand, are merely heavy, which implies greater density and compactness than the average load.

A huge oak dining table might be described as massive, which stresses largeness and solidity rather than weight, while something that is ponderous is too large or too massive to move, or to be moved quickly (Ex.: a ponderous printing press).

Most of these terms can be used figuratively as well. Heavy, for example, connotes a pressing down on the mind, spirits, or senses (Ex.heavy with fatigue; a heavy heart), and ponderous implies a dull and labored quality (Ex.: a novel too ponderous to read).

Burdensome, which refers to something that is not only heavy but must be carried or supported, is even more likely to be used in an abstract way to describe something that is difficult but can, with effort, be managed (Ex.: a burdensome task). Both a package and a problem may be described as weighty, meaning actually (as opposed to relatively) heavy; but it is more commonly used to mean very important or momentous (Ex.weighty matters to discuss).