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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.

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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.

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Speak! English Salon/スピーク英会話サロン

福岡市中央区大名1-12-36

★ためにならない日本語ブログ↓↓↓

http://kotsukotsu.wordpress.com/

http://22311221.at.webry.info/


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The Oval Office ★★

Renovations to the Oval Office, including a new carpet, drapes, wallpaper and furniture, are seen, Aug. 31, 2010, at the White House in Washington. The famous Resolute Desk remains. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

The Oval Office before and after Obama’s renovations.

George W. Bush’s Oval Office

US President George W. Bush, center, followed by US Vice President Dick Cheney, walks into the Oval Office of the White House January 26, 2001 in Washington, DC for the swearing in of Secretary of State Colin Powell. (LUKE FRAZZA/AFP/Getty Images)

Bill Clinton’s Oval Office

This Sept. 3, 1993 file photo shows President Clinton’s Oval Office at the White House in Washington. The Scott Group of Grand Rapids, Mich., made President Clinton’s Oval Office Rug, seen here, and President Obama’s new Oval Office rug, as well. (J.Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

George H.W. Bush’s Oval Office

This Jan. 22, 1990 file photo released by the White House shows President George H.W. Bush’s Oval Office at the White House in Washington. Bush’s redecoration of the Oval Office included a new rug with a gold Presidential Seal, new draperies, a coffee table, and two tall armchairs. Presidents typically put their own touches on the Oval Office early in their terms. (Susan Biddle/White House/AP Photo)

Ronald Reagan’s Oval Office

President Ronald Reagan takes one last fond look back at the Oval Office at the White House January 20, 1989 as he leaves for the Capitol for the inauguration of President George H.W. Bush.(Dirck Halstead/Getty Images)

Richard Nixon’s Oval Office

President Richard Nixon (R) and Vice President Gerald Ford face each other in the Oval Office on the day Nixon resigned, White House, Washington, DC., Aug. 9, 2974. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Lyndon B. Johnson’s Oval Office

President Lyndon Johnson is shown in the Oval office in this 1963 file photo. (Courtesy The White House Historical Association)

John F. Kennedy’s Oval Office

This Feb. 5, 1961 file photo shows a view of the Resolute desk in President Kennedy’s Oval Office at the White House in Washington. Built from the timbers of a British warship, the desk was installed in the Oval Office by John F. Kennedy, and since has been used by Presidents Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush. (Bob Schutz/AP Photo)

Renovations:  …を良好な状態に戻す;…を再び新しくする, 革新[刷新]する;…を修繕[修理]する

renovate old cathedrals  古い大教会堂を修復する.

Swearing in:  〈人を〉宣誓させて任命する, 宣誓就任させる

When will the new president be sworn in?  新大統領はいつ宣誓就任しますか.

Secretary of State: 国務長官. ▼他の諸国の外務大臣に当たる

Redecoration: 改装する

Resigned:

I (副 詞)](公式に)辞任する, (職地位などを)やめる, (会社機関から)辞職する⦅from …⦆;

II as名 詞](特定の役職を)辞任する

resign as ambassador 大使を辞任する

resign from the government  政府から退く

Timbers: 2⦅英国用法⦆(建築用の)材木, 木材;板材(⦅米国用法⦆lumber);柱;C⦅〜s⦆〘海事〙フレーム[肋]材(ろくざい);(梁(はり)柱など)1本の木材


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The Corporation ★★★

The Corporation is a 2003 Canadian documentary, written by Joel Bakan, and directed by Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott, that is critical of modern-day corporations and their legal status as a class of person. The film  evaluates corporate behavior towards society and the world in general as a psychiatrist might evaluate an ordinary person. It is a must-see for anyone concerned about the considerable power that corporations wield today.

The entire documentary is available on YouTube with and without Japanese subtitles.

THE CORPORATION [1/23] What is a Corporation?

ザ・コーポレーション(The Corporation)日本語字幕 01/18


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World’s Greatest Libraries ★

Moldova National Library – Photograph by Daniel Zollinger

1. University Club Library – New York City, United States

Photograph by Peter Bond

2. Canadian Library of Parliament – Ottawa, Canada


Photograph by James Gillard

3. Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library – New Haven, Connecticut

Photograph by Lauren Manning

Photograph by KAALpurush

4. Iowa State Capital Law Library – United States

Photograph by Tani Livengood

5. Suzzalo Library at the University of Washington – Seattle, Washington

Photograph by Sam

6. Admont Abbey Library – Austria

Photograph by Ognipensierovo

7. State Library – Victoria, Australia

Photograph by Waltonics

8. Library at El Real Monasterio de El Escorial – Madrid, Spain

Photograph by Jose Maria Cuellar

9. José Vasconcelos Library – Mexico City, Mexico

Photograph by Pedro Vasquez Colmenares

Photograph by Aurelio Asiain

10. Real Gabinete Português de Leitura – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Photograph by Ruy Barbosa Pinto

11. National Library of Finland – Helsinki, Finland

Photograph by Marj-Liisa

12. Mitchell Library – Sydney, Australia

Photograph by Christopher Chan

13. Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library at University of Toronto – Toronto, Canada

Photograph by Fadi J

14. George Peabody Library – Baltimore, Maryland

Photograph by Danielle King

15. Strahov Theological Hall – Prague, Czech Republic

Photograph by Rafael Ferreira


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Cartoon – Ziggy ★★


Ziggy is a cartoon created in 1969 by Tom Wilson.

Ziggy is a small, bald, trouserless, barefoot, almost featureless character (save for his large nose) who seems to have no job, hobbies, or romantic partner, only a menagerie of pets: Fuzz, a small white dog; Sid, a cat afraid of mice; Josh, a discouraging parrot; Goldie, a fish; and Wack, a duck. The appeal of the cast is juxtaposed with the endless stream of misfortunes which befall Ziggy. The character is frequently depicted in surreal or arbitrary situations, though many jokes mine typical comic strip pop culture territory, such as computers and the perils of modern life.

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Speak! English Salon/スピーク英会話サロン

http://web.me.com/josephcamcinnis
福岡市中央区大名1-12-36

★ためにならない日本語ブログ↓↓↓
http://22311221.at.webry.info/


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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.

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Speak! English Salon/スピーク英会話サロン

http://web.me.com/josephcamcinnis
福岡市中央区大名1-12-36

★ためにならない日本語ブログ↓↓↓
http://22311221.at.webry.info/