Speak English Salon

Leave a comment

Waiting for Superman

There’s a good statistic in the film: while American kids score near the bottom of most international comparative aptitude tests, the area where American kids do excel is confidence.
A study done about ten years ago compared confidence with actual performance and found that the higher students’ confidence in themselves, the worst their performance. I was not surprised.

Leave a comment

Japan Times – Phrase 101 ~ ★★

Japan Times の『これで英語が通じた!思ったことがズバリ言えるフレーズ」からふだん、会話でよく使う短い言葉。いざ英語で言うとなると…

今週のフレーズ – 101

Don’t kid yourself!


A: Maybe I’ll get a raise this year.

B: Don’t kid yourself. We’ll be lucky if our salaries don’t go down.

A: ことしは昇給するだろうな。

B: 何言ってんだよ。下がらなきゃラッキーってとこだぜ。


Quit dreaming./Quit fooling yourself./Who are you kidding? なども同じ意味。

今週のフレーズ – 101

This is ridiculous !


A: This is ridiculous! I didn’t even get an interview.

B: It’s tough finding work, even with a resume like yours.

A:くそっ! 面接も受けられなかった。


自分も巻き込まれている状況に対して怒りを表すときの一般的な表現。だれかの発言や報告について、客観的な立場で言う場合は、That’s ridiculous.(バカげている)と言う。

今週のフレーズ – 100

You’re so mean !


A: You’re so mean! Why didn’t you tell me?

B: Every time I call you you’re out.

A: いじわる! なんで知らせてくれなかったのよ!

B: だっていつ電話したって留守だったんだもの。


今週のフレーズ – 99

Suit yourself.


A: I’ve made up my mind. I’m going to study in Spain.

B: Suit yourself. I’ve got nothing to do with it anymore.

A: 私決めたの。スペインに留学するわ。

B: 勝手にしろ。俺はもう知らないからな。


今週のフレーズ – 98

Do it right


A: Look at how you planted these flowers. Do it right.

B: Oh — so you could tell.

A: この花の植え方は何なの。ちゃんとやりなさい。

B: ちぇっ。ばれたか。

同じような表現でよく使われるものに、Do it over again. がある。Look at 〜 は、だれかの間違いや不注意に注意を向けさせるための表現。So you could tell. は、批判が的を射ていることを認める言い方。

今週のフレーズ – 97

Hold your tongue !


A: It’s because you spoil him.

B: Hold your tongue! What do you know?

A: あなたが甘やかすから、いけないんです。

B: だまれ! わかったような口をきくな!

おもに夫や父親が使う、やや古くさく、恩着せがましい言葉。Shut upBe quietと同じ意味。What do you know? は修辞的な疑問文で、別な言い方をすれば、You know nothing.(君は何もわかっていない)となる。

Leave a comment

Dialect – Sneakers ★★

73. What is your *general* term for the rubber-soled shoes worn in gym class, for athletic activities, etc.?
a. sneakers (45.50%)
b. tennis shoes (41.34%)
c. gymshoes (5.55%)
d. sand shoes (0.03%)
e. jumpers (0.01%)
f. shoes (1.93%)
g. running shoes (1.42%)
h. runners (0.17%)
i. trainers (0.23%)
j. I have no general word for this (0.89%)
k. other (2.95%)
(10722 respondents)

All Results

Choice a: sneakers

Choice b: shoes

Choice c: gymshoes

Choice f: tennis shoes

Choice g: running shoes

I grew up on the west coast of the United States, living for the first ten years in the Los Angeles area, and the next ten or so years in Portland, Oregon. My father on the other hand, grew up in the Boston area, so the English I speak has been influenced somewhat by his way of speaking. As a child in California, I remember saying “tennis shoes” and sometimes “tennies”. In Oregon, many people called the shoes “running shoes”. After living in Japan as long as I have, I’ve been using “sneaker” to describe the shoes.


Speak! English Salon/スピーク英会話サロン





Leave a comment

Elbow – Mirror Ball ★

I plant the kind of kiss
that wouldn’t wake a baby
on the self-same face
that wouldn’t let me sleep;
and the street is singing with my feet,
and the dawn gives me a shadow I know to be taller.

All down to you, dear.
Everything has changed.

My sorry name
has made it to graffiti.
I was looking for
someone to complete me.

Not anymore, dear;
everything has changed.

When we make the moon our mirror ball
the street’s an empty stage;
the city sirens – violins.
Everything has changed.

So lift off love.
(down to you, dear)
Lift off love.
(down to you, dear)

We took the town to town last night.
We kissed like we invented it!
And now I know what every step is for:
to lead me to your door.

Know that while you sleep,
everything has changed.

We made the moon our mirror ball.
The street’s an empty stage;
the city sirens – violins.
Everything has changed.
Everything has changed.
Everything has changed.

Down to you, dear/So lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear/ lift off love
Down to you, dear…