AE 465 – Expression: Take It on the Chin
G’day, guys! What’s going on? Welcome to this episode of the Aussie English Podcast, the number one podcast for anyone and everyone wanting to learn Australian English. So, whether you want to learn Australian English or just English in general it’s all the same thing really, apart from maybe the odd slang term or expression, but I’ll let you know, I’ll let you know if I use some. But this is the podcast for you guys, and it is brought to you by The Aussie English Classroom. That is my online classroom with all the extra content specifically made so that you can work through it bit by bit to improve your English if you like to study and if you want to learn more, if you want to do more, if you want to partake in activities instead of just listening to the podcast, that is the place to go for you, and that is TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com and it’s just one dollar at the moment for your first 30 days so you’ve got plenty of time to give it a go.
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So, that intro scene at the start there was from the Rebel Films a YouTube channel. There will be a link in the transcript to their channel as well as this video. And it was a Pitjantjatjarra woman named, and I’ll see if I can do this right, Nganyinytja. Hopefully I said that right. A Pitjantjatjarra a woman named Nganyinytja from South Australia, and she was speaking about what it was like as an Australian aboriginal living in this area of South Australia in the desert before she had ever met a white man. So, many aboriginals in Australia didn’t lay eyes on, let alone meet, a white person until the mid-20th century.
So, go check that video out if you want to hear a bit of Australian Indigenous language being spoken as well as if you want to understand a bit more about what it was like being an Aboriginal in Australia before meeting white men.
Anyway guys, as usual, let’s go through an Aussie joke. So, the Aussie joke for today guys, are you ready? Are you ready? Are you buckled in? Are you prepared? The joke is:
Did you hear about that guy whose whole left side was cut off? Did you hear about that guy whose whole left side was cut off?
He’s all ‘right’ now. He’s all ‘right’ now.
Do you get it? Do you get it? So, it’s a pun here, guys. He’s all ‘right’ now. Did you hear about the left side, the left side, of this guy and how it was cut off? Now, he’s all ‘right’. So, that’s a joke there between left and right, right? Left and right. But then also, if you’re ‘all right’, especially after an accident, it means that you’re okay, you’re all right. Okay? So, I hope you get that one.
Today’s expression, guys, is ‘to take it on the chin’, ‘to take it on the chin’, and this one was suggested by Emma in the Aussie English Classroom Facebook group. We’re in their every week suggesting expressions and then we vote on them. Emma won this week’s. Well done Emma. Next week, good luck Aykhan. He keeps trying to win, but people keep beating him. So, come on Aykhan. You got this! Next week! We can do it!
So, let’s go through and define the different words in this expression first, guys. We’ll go through the definition and origin of this expression. I’ll give you a couple of examples. We’ll then go through a listen and repeat exercise. And then, I want to chat to you a little bit about Australian Aboriginal languages just so that you guys understand a little bit more about the diversity of languages in Australia.
Alright. So, definitions wise. The first one, the first word, in this expression ‘take’, ‘take’. This is one of those verbs that has many different meanings, but I’m sure you’re familiar with the word, or the verb, ‘to take’. ‘To take something’, though, in this case, ‘to take something’, ‘take it’, is to receive or accept something. To receive or accept something. You’re taking something. So, if someone tries to give me something, or maybe it’s not even being given, they’re just doing this thing to me, if I take it, I receive it, I accept it.
The word ‘it’. I’m sure you guys know ‘it’. I’m sure you know this word. It is the singular gender-neutral pronoun in English.
The word ‘on’. ‘On’ is, in this case, talking about the location of somewhere in the general surface of an area. So, in this case, it’s ‘on’ the chain. You are taking something, you’re receiving something, and then we’re using ‘on’ to talk about the surface on which you’re receiving this thing, which is a punch just so that you know. To take it on the chin. To take a punch on the chin.
The last word here, ‘a chin’. ‘A chin’ is the bottom of your face. It is under your lower lip. It is the protruding part of the face below the mouth, and it’s formed by where the two lower jaws meet in the middle.
Okay? So, those are the words.
Let’s go through the expression now, guys. So, the expression ‘take it on the chin’. I wonder if you guys have heard this and if you know how to use it. It’s got a few different meanings. The first one is a literal meaning, obviously, most expressions seem to have come from something literal originally. In this case, the literal meaning of ‘to take something on the chin’ is to receive an impact, especially a punch, obviously, on one’s chin. To receive a punch on the chin.
Figuratively, though, it is to endure hardship, difficulty, setback, defeat, especially when you do it with stoic courage or poise. Okay? So, to receive or suffer the full brunt or defeat of something, a setback, a difficulty, a hardship. And it’s that idea, I guess, of being punched in the face, when we’re talking about this literally. If you take it, if you accept it, if you don’t complain, if you get on with it, if you be strong, you be a man, you accept the challenge, you’re taking it on the chin. Okay?
So, the origin of this expression. It comes from the early 1900s. So, you know, it’s probably about 100 years old, if that. The phrase obviously comes from boxing and generally denotes a direct or significant hit most literally from an uppercut, which is where you drop your arm and it comes upwards to hit the bottom of the jaw. Okay? So, that’s where this comes from.
Let’s go through some examples now though, guys, of how I would use ‘to take it on the chin’ when I speak with people in English.
So, number one. Okay, the literal version. Imagine you’re a boxer. Okay? You’re a boxer. You like to fight. You’ve got a match against a formidable opponent who you’d like to defeat. You train incredibly hard leading up to this match in preparation. However, when the match comes around and you have to fight this guy, he just ends up being too good. His footwork is amazing. He’s quicker than you. He’s nimble. He’s got incredibly quick reflexes, which are sharper than yours. He’s out-moving you. He’s out-punching you. He’s out-boxing you. So, imagine you get hit with a jab, and then you get hit with a straight, and then finally, he gives you an uppercut square to the jaw and knocks you out. You get KOed. If you wake up, you realise you’ve been defeated, the referee picks you up, he holds up your opponent’s hand and announces that he’s the winner, and that you’re the loser, unfortunately. You hug your opponent, you congratulate him on his victory, and then you think, “How can I improve? What can I do? What did I do wrong? What can I do better next time?”. If you do all these things, you’re taking the loss on the chin. You’re taking the loss on the chin. So, you’re not being a sore loser. Despite losing, despite facing significant hardship, you’re being strong, you’re being a man, you’re accepting the loss, you want to learn from it, you’re taking it on the chin. You took it on the chin both literally and figuratively.
Example number two. This time imagine that you go to work one day and you find out that the business has tanked. Okay? So, it hit rock bottom. Maybe there’s a downturn in the economy. Maybe people just aren’t buying the services or the products from this business and the company isn’t as successful as it once was. So, as a result of the poor performance of this company your boss has to tell you that you’re being made redundant, meaning that the company can’t afford to keep you hired anymore. They have to let you go. It’s not that you’re being fired, but you’re not quitting either. But the position that you have at work is no longer available. So, you are being made redundant. If you take this on the chin, you’re being stoic. You understand it’s not their fault, it’s not your fault, it’s just how it is, and you accept things, and you stay strong, you get on with the job, you keep a positive attitude, you take it on the chin. So, someone might say if they hear about this, “Wow! You’re doing really well. You’re taking it on the chin.”.
Example number three, guys. Alright, so imagine that your mother is a gambler, so she likes to bet money, she’s addicted to gambling. So, imagine she goes every night to the pokies at a pub around the corner. She wanders off in the night after dinner, disappears, and then comes back and she’s pissed away a lot of the family’s money, a lot of the family’s hard-earned money. Eventually things go too far, your mother takes it too far and your father finds out what’s happened and realises that the family’s money is all gone, and it’s him and the children who have to take it on the chin. It’s the kids and the father, they’re the ones who now have to suffer as the result of the mother’s gambling, they have to endure this hardship, they have to take it on the chin, they have to be strong, they have to get on with things, they have to deal with this bad situation, they have to take it on the chin. If the family turned to the mother and told her off, you know, reprimanded her, and she got her act together and tried to fix things, she stopped gambling, she’s accepted it was her fault and that she needs to make amends, now she’s taking it on the chin. When your mum admitted she’d done something wrong, she really took it on the chin. Okay?
So, hopefully now you guys understand the expression ‘to take it on the chin’, ‘to take something on the chin’. Remember, literally, it means to take an impact especially a punch on one’s chin.
But figuratively, it is to endure a hardship, some difficulty in life, a setback, a defeat, and especially, when you face this with stoic courage and poise. Okay?
So, now let’s go through a little listen and repeat exercise, guys. This is your chance to practice your Australian pronunciation or just your English pronunciation in general. Remember, listen and repeat after me, guys. Let’s go.
To take it
To take it on
To take it on the
To take it on the chin x 5
Good job, guys. Now, ‘take’. ‘Take’ isn’t a regular verb. “I took it on the chin”, “I’ve taken it on the chin”. Okay? So, it has two different past participles, “took” and “taken”. So, in this exercise now, I want you to practice the Present Perfect “have taken it on the chin”, okay, and we’ll go through the different pronouns. Let’s go.
I’ve taken it on the chin
You’ve taken it on the chin
She’s taken it on the chin
He’s taken it on the chin
We’ve taken it on the chin
They’ve taken it on the chin
It’s taken it on the chin
Great work, guys. Now remember, if you would like to go more in depth with all the connected speech and the pronunciation, the secret tips and tricks, for what I’m doing here as a native speaker when I pronounce these phrases, remember you can sign up to the Aussie English Classroom. You will not only get access to this episode and the breakdown of the pronunciation in this exercise, but you will get all the previous episodes as well, and I’m currently working on a pronunciation course in the Aussie English Classroom. So, it’s full of videos. I’m about to upload, and exercise’s, MP3s for all the different sounds in English, as well as the minimal pairs, and it’s specifically for people who want to improve their Australian accent. So, get in there and give it a go. TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com.
All right, guys, let’s go through the Aussie Fact and we will finish up.
So, Australian Aboriginal languages. There was once estimated to be between 290-363 languages belonging to 28 language families and isolates spoken by Australian Aboriginals on the mainland and nearby islands of Australia. So, relationships between these languages still aren’t very well clearly understood and much is still yet to be learnt about these languages. But one thing that does blow my mind every time I learn about these indigenous languages was just how much diversity there was in these languages. So, 28 language families. 28! That’s astonishing. And if we consider, say, the language family that English is from, to put that in context and make you realise how diverse language families can be, the Indo-European languages in the Indo-European language family go from languages like Hindi, Russian, English, Gaelic in Ireland. All of these languages are still part of the same family. Whereas, different families would be languages like Arabic, that’s a different family from English, or Chinese, that’s in a different language family as well. So, 28 of these language families are in Australia for indigenous languages.
By the end of the 18th century, there were only 250 or so languages and varieties remaining. So, we lost quite a lot in the first hundred years of colonisation. And then at the start of the 21st century, there were fewer than 150 languages still used on a daily basis. So, potentially less than half the original diversity of languages in Australia is still being used on a daily basis.
The majority of Australian Aboriginal language diversity is found in northern Australia centred around Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory and the Kimberley region in Western Australia. So, that is where, I believe, 27 of the 28 language families are found in that small area in northern Australia. The remainder of Australia, the vast majority of the Australian continent, is just one language family, the Pama-Nyungan language family. And crazily enough, this family includes 300 languages, as many as 300 languages.
The majority of Australian languages are now highly endangered and only 13 or so are being transmitted to children being taught to children. Of the five least endangered Western Australian Aboriginal languages, four belong to the Ngaanyatjarra grouping of the Central and Great Victoria Desert.
So, that’s a little bit of an introduction to the state of languages in Australia, the indigenous languages, guys. I definitely recommend checking out that video from the start if you would like to learn a bit more about indigenous languages, how they sound. Definitely get on Google and have a look, and learn a bit more if it interests you.
Anyway, thanks so much for joining me today, guys. I hope you enjoy this episode and I will chat to you soon. Enjoy your weekend, guys. See ya!
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Learn Australian English in this episode of Aussie English where I teach you the Australian pronunciation of CAN vs CAN’T.
AE 464 – Can vs Can’t | Australian Pronunciation & Accent Training
G’day, guys. Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. Today I have a question from Dan who sent me this on YouTube, and Dan said, “How do we get the difference between can and can’t in Australian English?”. So, how can we pronounce these, and how can we listen out and hear the differences? Let’s go.
Alright, so this was a really good question. Thanks Dan. And remember, if you guys wanna ask me a question that you would like me to do a video on in the future, put that below.
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Alright, so ‘can’, we’ll go through ‘can’ first. ‘Can’ has the vowel sound /æ/. Okay? So, it sounds like words like fan, van, man, plan, and scan. However, ‘can’ can often be contracted, it can be de-emphasized, when it is in a sentence that has other words, where the word ‘can’ is not the focus.
So, ‘can’ is an auxiliary verb and I can use this verb before other verbs if I want to show that I am able to do this thing. I’m able to, I can do this thing. However, it can be contracted, it ‘can’ be contracted into just the schwa sound in Australian English, English everywhere can do this. Okay? “…’can’ do this”. So, if there are words in the sentence after ‘can’ I would generally say that you can contract it. Okay? So, it sounds like ‘can’. I so say this with me.
Can, can, can, can.
Good job. And let me give you some examples, okay?
I can see. I can see. I would never say it like that. Because the word ‘see’ is there, I would say, “I can see”. ‘Can’. The other example here is: can he help you? Can he help you? Can he help you? Can he help you? You’ve got ‘help you’ in there so you can say: ‘can’ he help you? Can help you?
The only thing I want to mention, when it is stand-alone, when it is by itself, in a sentence as in someone has used a question, they’ve ask you, “Can you do this? Can you do this”, and you’ve replied, “Yes, I can.”, you would never contract it. And so, you would say the full, well-pronounced word ‘can’. You wouldn’t say, ‘I can’ or ‘you can’.
So, for example: I can help you later. Can you? Can you? ‘Can’ is the only interesting word in that sentence aside from the pronoun. Can you? Can you? You wouldn’t say: can you? “Yes, I can”, not, “Yes, I can”. Okay?
So, quick recap. ‘Can’ sounds like: van, Dan, man, plan, etc., but it can be contracted when it is not the important word in a sentence, and it can become, it ‘can’ become, ‘can’. Can, can.
Alright, now let’s move onto ‘can’t’. ‘Can’t’. So, this is a different vowel sound. ‘Can’t’ sounds like words including: car, star, far, bar. This is a long /ɐː/ vowel sound, as opposed to a short /ɐ/ vowel sound. Okay? And this happens in the Australian accent where we have this vowel difference. Can, /æ/, can’t, /ɐː/. /æ/, /ɐː/. This is Australian, could be British as well, but it doesn’t happen in the Standard American Accent.
They will say ‘can’ and ‘can’t’, ‘can’ and ‘can’t’, and you have to listen for that T.
However, because we have that vailed difference in Australian accents you won’t often hear the T at the end. You can hear ‘can’, ‘can’, you know that that is the affirmative form, there’s no negative there, ‘can’, ‘can’. And when you hear ‘can’t’, you know, that’s negated because of the vowel sound.
And remember guys, this is different from the short version of this vowel. ‘Hut’ is a very short /ɐ/ sound, but if we make that longer, it changes the meaning of the word to heart, heart. Right? So, this is why it’s important to get this vowel sound right or you will change the meaning of the word and it’s quite bad.
Story time. Okay, so once I was working in a restaurant and the Thai lady, who was my manager at the time, I had to ask for a break. I needed to go on a break. So, I said, “Can I go on break?”, and she replied to me, “No, you cunt”. So, that was incredibly awkward, because I’m sure you guys will know that that word is one of the worst, if not the worst, words in English.
The way in which I told her to get around this was to just make sure she elongates that /ɐː/ sound. So, if you’re worried about making that mistake, just make sure that your elongating the vowel sound in the word ‘can’t’. Okay? Don’t make it quick. Don’t make it quick. Can’t.
Another point we also touched on a moment ago was that we mute the T. So, quite often you won’t hear people say ‘Can’t’, you’ll hear them say ‘can’t, ‘can’t’. So, what’s happening is that that T is a stop consonant where pressure builds up behind the tongue, and then is released, it’s released, but we can un-release it, although that’s not a word, we can prevent it from being released by just going. So, we would say, instead of ‘can’t’, we don’t say the /t/ and instead we just say ‘can’t’, and the tongue stops the air, ‘can’t’.
So, it sounds like a very, very, very short N sound instead of a long N sound. So, this is another way to listen out for this. If you heart, ‘can’t’, ‘can’t’, ‘can’t’, it’s different from ‘carn’, ‘carn’. That N sound is a lot more emphasised in the word ‘carn’ as opposed to ‘can’t’.
So, let’s compare these two words, okay, where will say the T released and then we’ll say unreleased.
Can’t, can’t, can’t, can’t, can’t, can’t.
As a result of this T being muted as well, when a word follows the word ‘can’t’ and it begins with a vowel sound, quite often we will link these words with an N sound. Okay? That /n/ in ‘can’t’ right at the end there. So, two examples are: I can’t open the door. I can’t open the door. I can’t open the door. N_open, N_open. I can’t open the door.
It can’t end like this. It can’t end like this.
Although, ‘can’ can be contracted to ‘can’, because ‘can’t’ or ‘can’t’ is already a contraction of the words ‘can not’, we won’t contracted any further. Okay? We won’t say ‘can’t’. So, let’s practice pronouncing the differences between ‘can’ and ‘can’t’, okay? Listen out for it.
Can, can’t, can, can’t, can, can’t, can, can’t.
Now I’m going to say to you a list of sentences, guys, and I’m not going to show you what those sentences are until after I have said them, and I want you to see if you can pick when I say ‘can’ or ‘can’ and when I say ‘can’t’. Okay? So, listen and have a think, pause the video if you need, but practice your ear here. This is where you want to listen and see if you can notice the difference in pronunciation. Let’s go.
Listening Comprehension test:
- ____ animals feel?
- She ____ help you.
- I ____ see him.
- He ____ eat now.
- ____ they buy me something?
- ____ you say anyone?
- It ____ end like this.
- We ____ leave when you want.
- I ____ change his mind.
Good job guys. I hope that helps. I know that the different sounds between ‘can’ and ‘can’t’ can be a real pain in the butt. Keep practising it. It will take a little time, but I am sure that you will get the hang of it sooner rather than later.
Remember, guys hit that ‘Subscribe’ button if you want to keep up to date with all the future videos coming out with regards to Australian English or English in general, and don’t forget to listen to the Aussie English Podcast.
This is the free podcast that I create, guys, for anyone and everyone wanting to learn Australian English. So, check it out via the website here.
Until next time, guys, I hope you have an amazing day and I’ll see you later. Peace!
- Can animals feel?
- She can’t help you.
- I can see him.
- He can eat now.
- Can they buy me something?
- Can’t you say anyone?
- It can’t end like this.
- We can leave when you want.
- I can’t change his mind.
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AE 463 – Expression: Every Nook and Cranny
Hey, guys! What’s going on? Welcome to this episode of Aussie English.
So, this is the Aussie English Podcast, guys, the number one podcast for anyone and everyone wanting to learn Australian English. It’s not just for those wanting to learn Australian English, though, anyone learning English, in general, will obviously get a lot out of this podcast as I am sure 99.99% percent of the words that I say are applicable in all other countries.
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Anyway. So, today’s episode is about the expression “every nook and cranny”, “every nook and cranny”. I wonder if you guys have heard this one before.
This one was from a friend Ivan. He’s one of my students who I give private lessons to on Skype. And Ivan was asking what it meant, ’cause he’d never seen the word ‘nook’ or the word ‘cranny’ before.
Anyway, we’ll get into that. Good job, Ivan. This was a really good one. But first the Aussie joke, okay, and it’s not to do with Australia today, but it is a funny joke as it’s a play on words, and I love these kinds of jokes. Alright, so the joke is:
What’s the best thing about Switzerland?
Okay? And Switzerland is that country where they speak German, Italian, French. It’s in Europe. Switzerland. Actually, is part of Europe? It’s part of Europe, right? I don’t know. There’s some of these countries who aren’t part of Europe, but in the… on the European continent. Anyway, maybe I’m having a brain fart.
Alright, the joke. What is the best thing about Switzerland? What’s the best thing about Switzerland?
And the answer: I don’t know. But the flag is a big plus! The flag is a big plus.
So, the joke here, guys, is that the flag of Switzerland is obviously red, it has a red background and a white plus symbol on it, you know, like a cross that is… it’s not an X. It is rotated 45 degrees and so it is sort of horizontal and vertical instead of diagonal. That is the flag, a white cross on a red background.
But if you say that something is “a big plus” in English that means that it’s a positive thing, it’s a benefit, it’s an advantage. Okay?
So, what’s the best thing about Switzerland? I don’t know, but the flag is a big plus. The joke here is that the flag is a plus, obviously, literally, but figuratively, it is a really good thing, it is a positive thing, it is an advantageous thing. The flag is a big plus.
Anyway, the expression today “every nook and cranny”, again, Ivan, great choice! You might hear this one as “look in every nook and cranny” or “search in every nook and cranny”. Okay? But “every nook and cranny” is used all over the world. Every sort of English will use this expression.
So, let’s go through, define the different words in expression, and then we’ll go through the definition of the expression itself, its origin, I’ll give you some examples, we’ll go through a little pronunciation listen and repeat exercise, and then we’ll have a little chat at the end about my latest news and a bit about mindfulness. Anyway. So, the definitions of the words.
“Every”. “Every”. I’m sure you guys know the word “every”. This is one of the first ones you’ll learn when you’re learning a language. You know, it will be the word for “every”. Obviously, every language doesn’t use “every”. But the word “every” is used before a singular noun to refer to all the individual members of a set without exception. So, for example “Every person in my family”, that is each person in my family, all of the people in my family every person. Another example could be “I work every day of the week”. “I work every day of the week”. So, all days of the week, each day of the week, I work every day.
The other two words in this expression, I want to give you a bit of a caveat, they’re not used elsewhere. So, this was one of those weird expressions where the words in it, at least two of the four words in it, “nook” and “cranny”, aren’t actually used outside of this expression in English, at least I’ve never heard “nook” or “cranny” used outside of using the expression “every nook and cranny” itself. Okay? So, I look these up though.
“A Nook” is an out-of-the-way corner. So, that’s a really cool adjective there too. Out-of-the-way, out-of-the-way, here is a compound adjective describing the noun “corner”. A corner that is out of the way. But if we want to turn it into an adjective, “it is out of the way”, we can turn it into a compound adjective with hyphens so it’s almost effectively one word, when we say it’s an out-of-the-way corner, an out-of-the-way corner. So, a corner that is not close to you. It is not in your path. You have to go out of your way in order to find this corner. That is apparently “a nook”. And it dates back to the mid-13th hundreds in Middle English and the word was “nok”. “Nok”, maybe, “nok”.
“Cranny”. “A cranny” is a crack or crevice. A crack or crevice. A crack or crevice would be something you would see, for instance, if you’re walking on a footpath and you see that the footpath has cracked, the sliver, the little, I guess, kind of like a tiny, miniature canyon in the concrete is a crack or a crevice. And the word “cranny” dates back to the late Middle English as well and it was originally spelt “C-R-A-N-Y”. So, it’s perhaps from Middle French “Crené”, and… or…, which is the past participle of the word “Crener”, to notch or to groove something. That’s a verb.
So, anyway, those two words are not used elsewhere in English just in the expression “every nook and cranny”.
So, the definition of this expression. If you look in every nook and cranny or search in every nook and cranny, this is every small, out-of-the-way place or places where something could be hidden. So, it is to look for something everywhere if you look in every nook and cranny. It is to search in every possible place for something. If you search in every nook and cranny.
So, let’s go through the expression origin. So, it’s a metaphoric idiom and it pairs the words nook and cranny that we went over before that are from Old English, which meant a crack or a crevice and this originates… this expression originates from the 1400s, the mid-1400s in Britain. So, obviously people were using these older English words or some of these words from French, and this expression originally would have made sense, because they would have used the words “nook” and “cranny” all the time. So, it’s kind of like to look in every place and location, except now we don’t use those expressions. So, there you go.
So, let’s go through some examples, guys, of how I would use this expression. “Every nook and cranny”, “to look in every nook and cranny”, “to search in every nook and cranny”.
So, imagine you’re a student working at a museum, which is what I was doing a year or so ago. So, you’re studying one animal or another and you need to find a certain specimen that is stored in one of the Museum’s collections. And the collections are where you keep certain things. (It) could be animals, it could be paintings, it could be historical artefacts. That is a collection of things, and at a museum it is called “a collection”, where they’re kept.
So, people study animals like… every animal. For example, in Australia, I studied mice and rats, and in the Museum’s collections they had a lot of these animals that had been caught previously around the country up to hundreds of years ago stored in the collection as a reference for scientists. So, imagine you’re studying a rat or a bilby or a goanna, some kind of native Australian animal, and it’s important that you get certain biological data or measurements from this animal, but you can’t seem to find it. Your records show you that it should be in the place that you’re looking in the collection there. You know, you’ve opened a certain drawer or you’re looking on a shelf somewhere and that’s where the animal should be, the taxidermied animal, the stuffed animal, but it’s not there. So, instead, you have to look in every single nook and cranny, you’ve got to search in every nook and cranny, to try and find the specimen, and eventually, it turns up. And you realise that someone had absent-mindedly put it in the wrong place. You found it after you searched in every nook and cranny.
Example number two. Alright, so the recent news about the soccer team in Thailand and their coach disappearing in a cave complex in the mountains there near, I think it was near Myanmar. So, the team were traipsing through, they were walking through, checking out this cave, going through this cave complex, when all of a sudden there was a torrential downpour of rain, and it was raining cats and dogs. They disappeared. They didn’t come out of the cave after the rain had stopped and they got trapped for nine days, but fortunately, the Thai government was working with a bunch of other countries, and they were trying to find these guys, and eventually they sent a group of cave divers from… I believe it was the UK where these divers were from, and they found these kids. They went through the dirty water, the muddy water with like zero visibility. They had to traipse into the cave and swim into the cave like four kilometres, and they eventually found these kids. But I’m sure before finding these kids, these divers as well as everyone else searching in the caves was looking in every nook and cranny. They were searching all throughout the caves, in all the different crevices, in all the different cracks, the different places these kids could be. They were searching in every nook and cranny, and eventually, they found the kids alive in an air pocket, and they were all sitting on a mound of mud. And now the trouble is getting the kids out.
Example number three. Imagine that you are an au pair in Australia. So, you are someone who is from France or from Germany or from Brazil. You’re taking care of someone’s kids. And we call that “an au pair”. It’s a French word, “au pair”, to the pair. So, you’re taking care of someone’s kids. You’ve taken them out to a playground. They’re very young. One of them maybe is a toddler. The other ones a bit older than a toddler. A toddler is usually two or three years old. Someone… a baby who’s walking around, you know, a toddler. So, out of the blue, at the playground where you guys are playing the toddler disappears. So, imagine one of the kids was on the swings, you were pushing the kid on the swing, and the toddler had been playing in the background on a seesaw or the monkey bars or the flying fox on this child’s playground. But all of a sudden, you turn around and this kid’s missing. So, the kid’s disappeared into thin air. You can’t find them anywhere. You have to search high and low. You look in every nook and cranny to find the kid, and then eventually, he shows up. You know, imagine you’re searching under the playground, behind the trees, in the car park, and all of a sudden you spot this kid behind a car walking off and you found him. You looked in every nook and cranny and you found this kid.
So, hopefully, by now guys you understand the expression “to look in every nook and cranny”. It is to look for something everywhere. It is to search in every possible place, especially, out-of-the-way places, small places, hidden places, nooks and crannies.
So, as usual guys, let’s go through a little listen and repeat exercise. This is your chance to just quickly practice your pronunciation. Try and mimic my accent if you’re after an Aussie accent. If you’re not, just pronounce it how you would like to pronounce it in any accent you’re currently working on. Let’s go.
To look in
To look in every
To look in every nook
To look in every nook and
To look in every nook and cranny x 5
All right now we’ll conjugate it in the simple future tense. I’ll look in every nook and cranny, etc.. Okay? Let’s go back.
I’ll look in every nook and cranny.
You’ll look in every nook and cranny.
He’ll look in every nook and cranny.
She’ll look in every nook and cranny.
We’ll look in every nook and cranny.
They’ll look in every nook and cranny.
It’ll look in every nook and cranny.
Great job, guys. Great job. Remember, if you would like to go more in depth into the pronunciation and the connected speech and intonation, the way in which I’m saying these things naturally like a native speaker, go to theAussieEnglishClassroom.com and enroll. It’s just one point to enroll and you will get access to the video that will go through each of these phrases in today’s listen and repeat exercise step by step. And I noticed there was quite a lot of connected speech in this exercise. So, if you want to learn to sound like a native speaker, make sure you join up.
Anyway, so today, instead of doing a sort of an Aussie fact like normal, I just kind of wanted to chat to you guys about what I’ve been recently up to, about the feedback that I’d gotten on a recent e-mail that I’d sent out to you guys about the podcast, and I wanted to talk a little bit about mindfulness.
Alright so, we’ll start with the email. I recently sent out an email titled, “What are your thoughts?”. “What are your thoughts?”, meaning what do you think? What is your opinion? “What are your thoughts?”. And I was asking for what you guys thought about the podcast. Which bits you liked, which bits you didn’t like, what I could do more of, what I could do less of, etc..
And so, you guys sent me a lot of emails and I really, really appreciate all the responses I got. I only recently managed to go through all of them and reply to you guys, but again, I sent you all a reply, a big thanks, and I will try to implement some of these changes. Although sometimes they were kind of contradictory. Some of you wanted more interviews. Some of you didn’t like the interviews and wanted more expression episodes. So, it’ll be hard to please everyone, but I promise that I will do my very best. So, a big thanks there.
Also some of you were suggesting that you wanted more content like the Walking with Pete episodes where I talk more about my opinions, about life in Australia, about self-improvement, diet, exercise all of that sort of stuff, so I’m going to try and do that in today’s episode when I talk a bit about mindfulness.
My latest news, we’ll get to that before we get to mindfulness. So… and you’ll see how these two things kind of go together. Moving house recently. That happened. Okay? So, we moved again. You guys will probably remember that at the start of the year we had to come to Canberra, we were staying with some friends, we moved out of that place into the Pakistani embassy with an incredibly horrible old lady who turned out to be pretty nasty, although, maybe not… she wasn’t actively trying to be nasty, but inadvertently what she was doing tended to be pretty nasty. I’m sure she had the best intentions, but as you guys might know that expression “the paved to…” or “the road to hell is paved with the best intentions”. So, although she was trying to do the best, it wasn’t the best for us.
Anyway, so we move back out of the Pakistani embassy in with my friends again, and then we moved into a new house more recently with that little dog that you guys will probably remember. And so, we were having some issues there with the owner of that house and their dog. It was just a bit of a nightmare. The house was incredibly small. It was a three-bedroom house. The bedrooms were incredibly small. We couldn’t fit a desk in our bedroom. So, I had to work sort of in the lounge room, which was a bit difficult at times as there was always the dog around and there would always be people around in the evenings so it would be hard to concentrate. And then often too, the lady here would go on holiday and just leave her dog with us, and we would have to just take care of this dog and she wouldn’t say anything. She’d disappear for two weeks and then just message us on Facebook like, “You guys didn’t have plans. You’re all good. Just take care of my dog.”. And on top of that, she would often have other people’s dogs just suddenly appear at our house and be staying there for days at a time, again, needing to be walked. And quite often, some of these dogs weren’t very well housetrained. So, they would pee inside, they would poo inside, and this would just be left for us to deal with.
And one sort of really gross story that I wanted to share with you guys, which was kind of the tipping point for us. And “the tipping point” is where you decide that it’s finally time to act. It’s like, “Okay, this is enough!”. Okay, it’s the tipping point. Imagine pouring water into a bucket that’s going to be tipped over, the tipping point is when there’s enough water in the bucket for it to be caused to tip over.
So, the tipping point for us was when I woke up one morning, opened the door to go to the bathroom, and stepped in some dog poo on the carpet the bare foot. So, that was about it. I had sort of had enough of the fact that these dogs were always. They were pooing inside. They weren’t well-trained. The owner would go away and just leave us with the dogs.
On top of that, too, she was planning on moving her boyfriend in for free, and there would be 5 people in this tiny house. So, anyway, it was getting expensive, it was getting stressful, frustrating, it was getting a bit too much, so we decided to find somewhere else and that’s been really good. We moved in about a week ago and we’re living now in another place in North Canberra, and the good thing for me is that all of the people in this house are Brazilians, so they’re always speaking Portuguese, and it causes me to have to always speak Portuguese as well. So, I’ve been working on that. It’s been really good.
Alright, mindfulness. So, I wanted to talk a bit about mindfulness and you’ll see how this kind of goes together with the events that have happened recently, and even though they’ve been a little stressful, they’ve been the kind of events that could make you angry, frustrated, irritated, I’ve tried to use mindfulness to try and not allow that to happen.
So, this started a few years ago with me when I was first trying to learn to meditate and I was doing mindfulness meditation, and this is where you try and focus on the thoughts as they arise in your head, not dwell on them, allow those thoughts to come up, examine them, and then allow them to fall away. So, it’s kind of trying to teach yourself to engage less and less with your ego. Now, “ego” can have two definitions.
It can be a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance. You know? If you’re very arrogant, you’ve got a lot of ego.
But the way in which I am using it here, “ego” is the part of the mind that mediates between the conscious and unconscious, and it is responsible for reality testing and a sense of personal identity. That is your ego. Your understanding of the world. Consciousness and unconsciousness.
So, I’ve been trying to work on that a lot and being a lot more mindful, thinking a lot more about these kinds of things, analysing my thoughts, and not allowing myself to be ruled by my ego and by the different emotions that I feel, whether it’s anger or fear or sadness or happiness.
So, for example, when I stepped in the dog poo, it would have been easy for me to fly off the handle and get frustrated, get angry, but I took a breath, I breathed out, I noticed that I was incredibly angry, and then I let the anger disappear. And doing this, it’s a practice thing, you have to keep practicing practicing this when you get angry, when you get frustrated, when you get scared, when you get sad, notice that feeling rise up in your body, take a breath in, breathe out, and let it sort of just fall away a little bit, and don’t let it control you. And that is the biggest thing. The reason that I’ve been such a big fan of mindfulness, more recently, is that it’s allowed me to gain a lot more control of my emotions, of my personality, and so, it’s not governed as much by the exterior forces, the external world. Other people and what they do doesn’t affect me internally as much as it used to. So, now when bad things happen, I relax, I notice that I get angry, I say that the anger isn’t a part of me, it’s going to disappear, I’m going to let it go, I breathe out, and I move on.
And it’s been incredibly motivating. It’s really allowed me to sort of just control my emotions and not be governed by anger or frustration or sadness all the time.
So, anyway that’s really what I wanted to talk about today, guys. Maybe tell me in the comments or send me a message and tell me if you’ve tried mindfulness meditation where you try and externally and objectively view these feelings, allow them to rise up, allow them to fall away, and not judge yourself on these things.
Anyway, guys, I hope you enjoy this little discussion at the end here. Something a little different. I hope you enjoy this episode and I will see you next week. Peace out.
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AE 462 – Expression: Pull Up Stumps
It was the most famous dismissal in the history of cricket. In 1948, Don Bradman strode to the crease to play the last of his 80 test match innings.
Then a special cheer on the field.
He needed just 4 to finish with a career average of 100. Incredibly, the greatest batsman of all time finished with a duck.
G’day, you mob. How’s it going?
Welcome to this episode of The Aussie English Podcast. This is the number one podcast for anyone and everyone wanting to learn Australian English. So, it is specifically for people keen on, interested in, passionate about Australian English, but if you’re learning American English, if you’re learning British English, it doesn’t really matter, guys, it’s all the same language, a slightly different accent, sometimes I might also use slang that is specific to Australia, but other than that the tips, the tricks, the language you can learn in this podcast, for the most part, is going to be useful anywhere in the world. Okay?
So, the Aussie English Podcast, guys, is brought to you by TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com. This is the online learning environment, guys, where I upload all the bonus content in the form of short courses. So, for instance, if you want to work on your pronunciation, there is a pronunciation course that teaches you all of the different sounds in English. It gives you different audio files so you can practice these sounds. It compares similar sounding sounds. It’s a really good resource if you want to improve your accent.
But then, there’s also courses that go with each of these expression episodes where you get a breakdown of the vocab in this episode. You will get a video explaining eight of the more complicated vocab words. You will get another video on pronunciation and connected speech so you can sound more like a native speaker.
And then, a third video at the moment, about the different expressions that I use in these episodes. So, this is the best way for advanced English learners, intermediate to advanced English learners, to really take it up a notch, get to the next level, and improve a lot faster.
Anyway guys, a quick mention too, if you want just the transcripts and the MP3s to the podcast, you don’t have to sign up to The Classroom. You can just go to TheAussieEnglishPodcast.com and you can sign up for a small monthly fee and you will get all of the transcripts, the words written down, for each of these episodes as well as the MP3s, ’cause I know plenty of you guys just want that material.
Anyway, the intro scene for today, guys, was from a clip from a documentary on YouTube that was made by ESPN. I will put this in the transcript so that you can check it out. But, it was all about Australia’s most famous cricket player Sir Donald Bradman and the fact that he only just missed out on getting an average of 100 runs per game. So, we’ll talk more about that in the Aussie fact today.
Anyway, let’s get into the Aussie joke, we’ll go through the expression, the definitions, the origin of the expression, some examples, a little listen and repeat exercise, and then the Aussie fact.
So, today’s joke, guys, is related to cricket, because the expression’s related to cricket, which is also why the Aussie fact is related to cricket. And for those of you who don’t know, cricket is that game played by the British colonies around the world, the Commonwealth countries, where you hit a ball with a wooden bat. Okay? And it tends to be played on a very large oval.
So, the joke.
There are two rival cricketers and they were talking. The first one says, “The local team wants me to play for them very badly.”. And the second one says, “Well, you’re just the man for the job!”.
So, okay two cricketers. The first one says, “The local team wants me to play for them very badly.”. Okay? I want to think about “very badly”. And then the next guy says… and this is the joke, “Well, you’re just the man for the job!”.
So, what’s going on here and why is this funny? Okay, it might be complex and might seem complicated at first. So, “badly”, the word “badly” can be used in two different ways. For instance, if I want something really badly, I want it a lot. Okay? I really want that thing.
Whereas, if I do something really badly, or very badly, I do it horribly. So, in this case, the joke is that the guy is trying to say that the local team wants them to play for him really badly, meaning they really want him to play for the team, they want it a lot, they want it badly. But the second guy here, is interpreting it as he’s a horrible player and that the team wants him to play badly, as in, they want him to do a bad job of playing. And that’s why he says, “You’re the man for the job, then!”, suggesting the guy is a horrible cricket player.
Anyway, (I) hope you enjoy that joke, guys. Okay.
So, the expression today is “pull up stumps”, “to pull up stumps”. This is one that I’ve heard from time to time in Australia. It probably won’t be used in America. In fact, I am almost certain it won’t be, because Americans don’t really play cricket. They’re not fond of cricket. It’s not a big sport there. However, it might be used elsewhere in the English-speaking world that’s part of the Commonwealth where cricket is very common.
So, this expression “to pull up stumps” came from Rocio in the Aussie English Classroom. She is a member in there. Every week I get the members together on Facebook, we discuss different expressions to put on these episodes, and this week’s was hers, and everyone voted on it. Good job, Rocio.
So, let’s go through the definitions of the different words used in the expression “to pull up stumps”.
So, “to pull”. If you pull something, it is to grasp a hold of that thing, to hold the thing with your hand, and bring it towards you. So, to pull something is the opposite of to push something. You bring it towards you by holding it, as opposed to pushing it, as in, forcing it away from you. “To pull”.
“Up” is pretty obvious, guys. “Up” is the opposite of “down”. It is upwards, towards the sky. If you pull something “up”, you’re lifting that thing upwards, you’re lifting that thing vertically. To pull something “up”. So, you’re pulling something “up”.
“A stump”. This might be the one word you guys might not know. “A stump”. This can be two different things. Usually, it can be the base of a tree. So, if you chop a tree down, you’re a lumberjack, you’ve cut a tree down with a chainsaw or a saw, the thing that’s left in the ground where the roots are connected to the base of the tree, but the trees are not there anymore, that is “a stump”. Okay? “The stump” of a tree. However, in terms of cricket, “a stump” is one of the three pieces of wood that is hammered into the ground that the batter has to protect with the bat. So, the bowler, the person who throws the ball or bowls the ball, technically, in the game of cricket, is trying to hit the stumps with the ball and knock what are called the bails off the top of the stumps, and if he does so the batter is out. So, that is what “a stump” is in terms of cricket.
So, what does this expression mean and where did it originate from? “To pull up stumps”, “to pull up stumps”. In cricket, “to pull up stumps” means to call an end to game play for the day. So, obviously, if you pull the stumps up, you’re pulling them out of the ground, the game’s over. You’re pulling the stumps up, you’re leaving the ground, the game’s over. So, that’s the literal meaning.
However, figuratively, it means to cease doing something or to stop doing something, at least for the day. Okay.
So, let’s go through some examples.
Alright, example one. This is the literal example. Imagine you’re a cricketer who’s playing a match and that you’re on the way to scoring a century, which is 100 runs. We call that a century. You know, like 100 years is a century, we call a hundred runs in the game of cricket a century. You’re nearly at 100 runs. You’ve got a bowler on the other team you hate facing. So, this guy… you’re scared he’s going to get you out, you’re scared he’s going to bowl you out. He comes out, he’s ready to take you out, but just as he’s about to start bowling his first over, and over is the first of six bowls that a bowler gets before you have to change bowlers, an over his six bowls. Before he gets to start his first over, it starts raining, and this is a blessing in disguise for you, because the pitch has to be covered. They don’t want water in the pitch. The players are called off the pitch and have to take a break. You know, maybe a smoko, although, it’s unlikely they smoke and the game’s ended for the day. So, as a result of your good luck, as a result of the game finishing for the day, it’s time to pull up stumps. It’s time to call it a day. It’s time to take a rain check. We have to play tomorrow when it’s not raining anymore. The rain caused the umpire to literally pull up stumps.
So, example number two. Okay, this time you’re out with your mates sinking a few cold ones at the pub. So, you’re sinking, you’re drinking, a few beers, a few cold ones at the pub, you’re having a few cold beers. It’s Friday night drinks. So, Friday night drinks in Australia is where you tend to go to a pub or somewhere you can drink alcoholic drinks with friends or with colleagues from work. So, you’re Friday night drinks where you head out after work after a long week, ’cause you want to kick back and relax, you know, and have a yarn with your mates. Unfortunately, your wife calls and says that you need to come home and have dinner. So, you forgot she was cooking dinner, she’s put together a lovely meal, and you need to go home, you need to rush off, and get back home and have dinner. So, you might turn to your mates and say, “Guys, look, I’m really sorry, but it’s time for me to pull up stumps and head home. My wife’s getting a little bent out of shape, she’s getting a little angry, she’s getting her knickers in a knot. I’m sorry I’ve got to bail. I’m sorry I have to pull up stumps.”.
The third example here. Okay. Imagine that you are a tradie. So, you’re a brickie, which is a bricklayer, or a sparkie, an electrician. So, you’re on a job site, you’re building a house, you’ve got there early in the morning with your work mates, you’ve been smashing out all the work having a laugh, and suddenly find out it’s lunchtime. You suddenly realise, “Ah! It’s lunchtime. It’s almost twelve o’clock.”. So, you might turn your mate and say, “Wow! Time really flies when you’re having fun, huh? I didn’t realise it was almost lunchtime. It’s time to pull up stumps and go grab some grub.”. Okay. And “grab some grub” is to grab some food. “Grub” is food in Australian English as a slang term. So, “Let’s go get some grub, guys. Let’s go grab something to chew on. Let’s pull up stumps and we’ll come back later on.”.
So, hopefully now guys, you understand the expression “to pull up stumps”. Remember, literally, in terms of cricket, the game of cricket, is to call an end to game play for the day, because you have to literally pull the stumps up, pull them out of the ground, remove those stumps, part of the wicket, and take them inside, you know, pack up.
Figuratively, though, it just means to cease doing something, and usually, just for the day. Okay? Just for the day. You might come back and do it later.
Anyway, let’s go through a little listen and repeat exercise, guys, and then we’ll have a little yarn, we’ll have a little chat, about cricket and Sir Donald Bradman. Okay?
So, in this listening exercise, guys, this is your chance to practice your pronunciation. So, try and mimic my accent if you are after the Australian accent. If you are not, then just say these words after me in whatever accent you are practising. Okay? Let’s go.
To pull up
To pull up stumps x 5
I had to pull up stumps.
You had to pull up stumps.
He had to pull up stumps.
She had to pull up stumps.
We had to pull up stumps.
They had to pull up stumps.
It had to pull up stumps.
Great job, guys. Remember, if you would like to go in depth, you know, do a deep dive into how the pronunciation here works and learn a bit more about connected speech, you can join up to the Aussie English Classroom, TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com. Sign up. It’s just one dollar for your first month. You get 30 days to get used to it, to give it a try, see if it’s for you, and you can cancel at any time if it isn’t. But I assure you, if you get in there and work hard, your English is going to skyrocket.
Anyway, guys. Let’s get into the Aussie English fact for the day.
So, today’s Aussie English fact is about Sir Donald Bradman and cricket in the early 20th century versus how it is today.
So, what made me think of Sir Donald Bradman? Well, “pull up stumps” is obviously an expression that is related to cricket, and I was thinking about cricket and how I could talk about cricket, what interesting facts or aspects of the game do I know about, and then, I thought about Sir Donald Bradman who I knew a little bit about, at least, I know a lot more about him now after having studied this, but I knew a little bit about him from my days at school playing cricket.
Anyway, I found a great pair of videos online. One of them was by a Cricket.com.au (watch it here), which I will link. This is on YouTube. And another was by ESPN (watch it here), which I mentioned at the start, and I sort of broke these down and took facts from them to compile into today’s Aussie fact.
Alright, so Sir Donald Bradman. Sir Donald Bradman was born on the 27th of August in 1908, so 110 years ago, nearly. And he passed away, he died on the 25th of February in 2001. So, what is that? He was 90-something years old. And he was the greatest cricket player of all time. Statistically, there’s no one even close.
His first cricket Test match was in 1928 and he played for 20 years until the end of 1948. On average, he scored 99.94 runs per cricket match, which is absolutely astonishing. And when you compare that to modern-day cricket superstars, Australians like Ricky Ponting or Steve Smith, he scores nearly two times as many runs on average. Insane.
So, Bradman was 12 years old, he was only 12 years old, when he first scored 100 runs in a cricket match, his first century. And as a kid, he would hone his skills in by spending hours hitting a golf ball against a round brick wall with a cricket stump in his backyard. And that’s insane when you think, a golf ball’s round, a cricket stump is round, and he was hitting it against this small brick surface, which was also round. So, there’s a really cool video online, which again, I’ll try and include in the transcript, guys, and it shows just how insane his hand-eye coordination was from training like this.
So, Bradman is so loved by the Australian public, there are stamps of him, books, coins, songs, TV series, and even a museum that’s been built in his memory.
What’s even more astonishing about Sir Don Bradman’s average of nearly 100 runs per game is that back in that early period of cricket, in the early 20th century, cricket bats were actually much smaller and lighter, which made it a lot harder to hit balls further and higher. So, you couldn’t as easily hit them to score fours or to score sixes. These are the numbers of runs. If you score a 4, that is to hit the ball along the ground, it bounces in the field, but makes it all the way to the boundary. And a six is when you completely hit it out of the ground. So, because the bats were so much smaller and lighter, instead of being able to just hit it out of the ground more easily, he had to try and weave it around the fielders, he had to try and evade and get past fielders and be much more of a cunning player. So, we can only imagine what Bradman would have done or would have been capable of if he’d had one of the modern-day bats to use back then.
Modern-day batters also done a great deal more safety equipment today including chest, thigh, and leg pads, arm and neck guards, and thick gloves, and a helmet. So, whereas in Bradman’s day, they only had leg pads and some simple gloves to cover the hand. And this made scoring runs even harder as you often had to get out of the way of the ball to avoid being injured. Whereas today, with all the protection, you are probably much more likely to allow a ball to hit you, at least, you would more readily do so, because of the protection you have.
The pitches on which cricket is played today as well are a great deal more advanced test and they are really well maintained compared to back in Bradman’s day when he was at his prime. There are teams of people who have full-time jobs as green keepers and curators dedicated to growing, manicuring, and maintaining the grass on these pitches, they flatten it, they paint it, they make sure that it stays dry and incredibly compacted, incredibly hard, keeping all moisture out so that the balls bounce really well on these pitches. However, obviously, in Bradman’s day, pitches were a lot less well maintained. They would suck in the moisture, they would be a lot less even, so the balls would bounce all over the place, and if it rained during the day, the conditions would change, because they wouldn’t cover the pitches.
Another big difference is the technology available today to cricket players. So, bowlers and batters can use apps and online technology now to find out and research about other people that they’re playing against. So, they can work out how to better bowl out batters or how to better avoid certain bowlers using sophisticated plans. In Bradman’s day, they didn’t even have TV, didn’t even have tele. So, nowhere near as much information was available about players, and more often than not, you would be walking out into a game blind. You would have no idea about what the other person or the other team was capable of.
Despite this, today’s cricketers believe that Bradman, if he were alive today, he would still give bowlers a run for their money and that they would find him to be a tough cookie as he would have found a way to get around them and counteract anything that they threw at him.
Fielders are also a great deal more athletic today. They dive, they leap, they jump, they try and catch balls a great deal more, and a part of this, as well as the skill of batters and bowlers today, is the fact that they can train every single day. This is their full-time job. Whereas, surprisingly enough, sir Donald Bradman had to train only a few days a week and outside of cricket he had to have another full-time job, because cricket just didn’t pay.
So, why wasn’t Bradman’s average 100? In the last ever game that he played in 1948, as you heard at the start of this episode, when he was about to play his 80th test match innings, he came out onto the ground, he only needed four runs in order to finish with a career average of 100, however, incredibly, the greatest batsmen of all time in cricket was bowled out for a duck, meaning that he was bowled out before he scored a single run. To be bowled out for a duck.
Anyway guys, I hope you will agree that Sir Donald Bradman was an amazing cricket player. Do you think he was the greatest cricket player of all time? And how do you think he’d go if he were to play cricket today nearly 90 years after he first stepped onto the pitch?
Anyway, guys. It’s been great chatting to you. I hope you have an amazing week and I’ll see you soon!
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AE 461: How to Pronounce the Australian ‘O’
Alright, so we’re almost at the end of the field here where there’re trees
and I just don’t want to make too much noise, ’cause I know that I’ll probably scare them.
What’s going on, guys? I thought we could do a vlog today, ’cause I’ve had quite a few questions regarding the Australian ‘O’ sound.
So, let’s go and do a ‘vlog’. Let’s just go.
Alright, so I am going to find a nice shaded spot to sit down in and do this lesson.
This looks perfect. Look at that! That was made to be sat on! That was definitely made to be sat on. So, I’ll set up and let’s do this. Boom!
So, how’s this, guys! A bit of Australian pronunciation in the bush, or at least as close as I can get currently in the Australian bush.
So, you’re probably going to hear things like crows singing in the background, and maybe currawongs, you’ll hear birds, all sorts of stuff.
But, this is the office for the day and I wanted to tell you how to do the ‘O’ sound in Australian English.
Okay. The ‘O’ sound. So, the Australian ‘O’. There are two things happening here. This is a diphthong so there are two vowel sounds. You’re going to hear “O-o”, “O-o”. Okay? It’s going to go “O-o”. It sort of rounds. Okay? It goes “O-o”.
How do we make these two different sounds? First, obviously, we have the mouth a little bit more opened and the lips are rounded. Okay? Like, “O”, “O”.
And then the jaw comes up a bit and the tongue gets closer to the top of the mouth. So, it sounds like “o”. Okay? And the lips have rounded ever so slightly.
So, I always try and explain this to my students by saying there’s a bit ‘O’ at the start with your lips, ‘O’, and then it goes to a small ‘o’ by lifting the jaw, ‘O-o’ x 3.
Okay? Say that with me.
‘O-o’ x 4.
Good, good, good.
Now I’ll try a sentence for you guys, or a few sentences, that you can repeat after me in order to perfect your pronunciation. Okay?
So, let me just think here for a sec, ’cause I’m doing this on the fly, I’m doing this on the spot.
You never know when to go.
You never know when to go.
I throw toes at Beau’s nose.
I throw toes at Beau’s nose.
So, I don’t know if Beau won’t go.
So, I don’t know if Beau won’t go.
Dingoes and crows go after snowmen.
Dingoes and crows go after snowmen.
Good job, guys. So, I hope that helps. I hope it gives you a bit of an idea. Just keep listening, repeating, listening, repeating. Really try and nail this vowel sound in Australian English as it will really, really help you sound a lot more like an Australian.
And it tends to be one of the first things I notice when I hear foreigners speaking English if they get it right. It really sticks out and I’m suddenly like, oh, okay, this person’s working on their Australian accent. That’s pretty good.
So, I would love to ‘know’ what you guys think. So, ‘go’ down to the comments and let me ‘know’. Let me ‘know’.
Alright, I will see you in the next one, guys. Peace!
So, I just decided to lift up this rock here to see what we would find.
What do you guys think this little dude is? Or should I say this little lady?
This is one of Australia’s most dangerous spiders that is called the redback spider for obvious reasons.
So, we might leave her here, but yeah, this is one nasty little spider that if you see it, probably just leave it alone and definitely do not pick it up.
So, usually, there’s a whole heap of kangaroos in this field here, especially at sunset.
So, the sun is… can I get my hand in front of it? Right here-ish, and it’ll probably set in about an hour maybe a bit more.
But there is… there’s water down here, there’re trees down here, so they sit there and rest all day, and then at night or in the evening when the sun sets, they come out in this field here and eat this kind of grass.
So, that’s why I thought I would come down here, but they don’t seem to be out just yet. But, I wonder if they are lying under the trees chilling out, scratching their balls, and waiting for the sun to go down. So, let’s see if we can get a little closer and have a look.
Alright, so we’re almost at the end of the field here where there are trees and I just don’t want to make too much noise, ’cause I know that I’ll probably scare them, assuming they’re here that is.
So, you’ll be able to see here behind me, I don’t know what this is for exactly, but the wire’s pointing in, which means we shouldn’t go in, and I’m not going to go in, but obviously, it’s not trying to keep the kangaroos in, it’s trying to keep people out.
But there… I’ve seen 100s of kangaroos in here before. I’ll show you what I’m looking at.
So, if we get close, hopefully I’ll have enough time to switch lenses so that I can get a closer look for you guys as I’ve brought Kel’s camera with me, which has a much bigger lens on it.
So, a bit of a biology lesson for you guys. Kangaroos tend to stay out of the heat in the middle of the day when the sun’s out, because unlike humans they can’t sweat.
A lot of mammals, you might be surprised to know, can’t sweat in order to lose heat like humans. They have to… they have to pant to cool themselves down.
And so, one way for kangaroos to avoid overheating is obviously avoiding the daylight and instead being active in the evenings when it’s still warm but it’s not really, really, really hot. They’re not going to have direct sunlight. And a really cool thing that they do when they want to cool themselves down, if it’s a hot day, even if they’re in the shade, is that they… they lick their arms. So, they have veins on their forearms really close to the skin and they wet the skin in order to allow heat transfer to occur more rapidly. So, they cool down. So, they actually have this cool adaptation of putting saliva on their arms, wetting the fur, and then when that evaporates it cools them down.
Anyway, I don’t know where they are. They mustn’t be at this end… They mustn’t be at this end. I’ll have to keep exploring and we’ll see if we can find something interesting.
Well, it looks like they don’t want someone in here. They’ve obviously gotten some kind of machine and dug this huge ditch here across this road, right across this road, so that people can’t drive in. However, it seems that they have gotten around that by simply going around the trees here. So, there you go.
So, we know we are in the right place, because these are kangaroo paw tracks on an ant hill here. You can see these holes in the ant hill. And there is also kangaroo faeces.
So, mister kangaroo has been kind enough to crap on mister ant’s ant hill. So, at least we know they’re around here somewhere.
Alright, so I found the kangaroos. They are about… they’re about 1 kilometre this way, unfortunately. However, I did also see… I can see one from here, actually, way over here. So, I might go check that out. But yeah, bugger! (I’ll) see if I can get a shot of these for you guys. Right above my finger there way, way off in the distance.
The funny thing is too, there’s so many animals out here, right? I can see ducks, I can see coots, all of these water birds, swans, and then we’ve also got a bird of prey sitting up here watching over the creek where I am. Or the creek, the dam, whatever this is. There’s a bird of prey. I think it’s some kind of kite. Let’s see if I can get a shot of it.
So, I’ve already seen some kangaroos, guys. They’re right here in front of me. I need to probably whisper because they can see me, they’re all looking at me now actually. They’re about 100m in front of me. I’m going to try and get some good shots of them whilst they’re eating. So, let’s see how we go.
Alright, guys. So, this is about as close as you can get to kangaroos in Australia without frightening them off. Well, they just ran off a little bit, but there’s still a really, really big dude here that I’m not going to mess with, hopping around somewhere. And you can see too how quickly they disappear. There is actually probably about 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 kangaroos in front of me here, but as they bend down into the long grass you can’t see them at all. You just see these little curves. So, pretty cool. Pretty cool. Anyway, I’m going to let them eat and I’m going to head home. Night, guys!
God damn it!
I tell you what, guys, I think this comes under the heading of “No shit Sherlock!”. “Road closed”. What road?
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AE 459 – Expression: Have Eyes Bigger Than Your Stomach
G’day, guys! What is going on? Welcome to this episode of the Aussie English Podcast.
I hope that you mob are going great. I hope you’ve had an amazing week and that it has also been an amazing weekend.
So, that intro to day was the sound of a male koala making a mating call, and it comes from a clip from Taronga Zoo on Youtube. This will be linked in the transcript. If you guys want to check out a lot of Australian wildlife, definitely go and check out Taronga Zoo in Sydney.
I remember hearing this for the first time when I was camping as a kid. I can’t remember where we were, but it was probably in the Dandenongs or somewhere on the Great Dividing Range in Victoria or New South Wales, somewhere like that, and I remember waking up in the middle of the night and hearing this bloodcurdling kind of rumble or scream, the one that you just heard, and thinking, “Oh my god! What animal is this? Is a pig? Is it some kind of, you know… is it a wolf? Is it a bear? Is it some kind of predator coming to get me?”. I was, you know, seven or eight years old. And then my dad woke up and he told me, “No, that’s a koala, mate. That is the sound a male koala makes when it’s looking for a female with whom to mate.”.
So, there you go, guys. Hopefully, that will save a few of you from being scared shitless when you guys come to Australia, go camping, and may find yourselves in the middle of the night being woken up to that sound.
Anyway guys, welcome to the Aussie English Podcast. This is the number one podcast for anyone learning Australian English or English in general. It’s designed to take you from intermediate to advanced. I speak naturally like a native speaker. I don’t slow things down, and yeah, I try to teach you vocab, expressions, all the kinds of English that I would use on a day to day basis when I speak English.
So, the Aussie English podcast, guys, is brought to you by the Aussie English Classroom. This is a website. It’s an online learning classroom where you guys get access to now dozens of online courses related to these episodes. So, you’ll learn the vocab from these episodes, you’ll get listening comprehension quizzes that you can go through to test your listening comprehension skills, and then you’ll also learn things like the more advanced vocab, the pronunciation, and intonation, connected speech, all those things out of the listen and repeat exercise, and then also expressions that I use in these episodes. So, I tend to make those into videos at the moment, each about 10 minutes. You get several of those each week in a new course. So, if your goal is to take your English to the next level, I definitely recommend signing up at TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com. It’s just one dollar for your first month. So, get in there and give it a go.
And don’t forget, too, guys, if you want the transcript and the MP3 for this episode make sure that you jump over to the website of theAussieEnglishPodcast.com and you can sign up there to get access to those every single week.
Anyway, let’s get into the content today, guys. So, this joke. Today’s joke is related to stomachs, bellies, tummies. I wanted to tie it in with the expression for today. So, the joke is:
What did the policeman say to his tummy? What did the policeman say to his tummy? I’ve got you “under a vest”.
Another good one, guys. Another good one. I’ve got you “under a vest”. So, the joke here is, obviously, with “I’ve got you “under arrest””, but policemen tend to wear things like bullet-proof vests, and the tummy, the stomach, the belly is found obviously under a vest if you’re wearing a vest. So, that’s the joke there. Police often say, “I’ve got you under arrest”, and in this case, they’re wearing a vest and their tummy is “under a vest”. The jokes just keep on killing.
So, today’s expression, guys. Today’s expression is “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”. “To have eyes bigger than your stomach”. You might also hear this is “bigger than your belly”, “bigger than your tummy”. That doesn’t really matter too much, but it’s often “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”.
Now, this one has suggested by my fiancée say in the private Facebook group for all the Aussie English Classroom members, although, Kel, to be honest, you kept suggesting expressions that I had already done and I suggested this expression that she then put forth as her suggestion, and I’m making quotation marks with my fingers, because it was really my suggestion, and this one won. So, I guess we’ll call this 50/50 Kel. We both won this one and there’s been a bit of rivalry recently where Kel keeps putting forward expressions that she wants me to do, but no one votes on them and everyone else gets their expressions in. So, anyway. If you want to be involved in that, guys, join up to the English Classroom and I’ll put you in the private Facebook group.
As usual, let’s go through the different words in this expression. We’ll define those, we’ll then go through the expression definition, a little bit about its origin, I’ll give you some examples of how to use this expression in day to day life, some situational examples, we’ll worth a little listen and repeat exercise, guys, for you to practice your pronunciation, and then I’m going to go through Aussie facts about the Koala. Okay. So, today’s Aussie fact will be about the koala.
So, let’s get into today’s definitions for this expression or the words in this expression.
Alright so, “to have”. I’m sure you guys know “to have”. To possess or to own something. I have two arms and two legs. I have a car. Okay? To possess or to own something.
“An eye”. “An eye” is one of the two organs you have in your head that allow you to see, to look at things, to watch things. They give you the sense that is vision. “An eye” or “two eyes”.
“Bigger than something”. If you are “bigger than something”, you are larger than something, you are of increased size compared to that things. So, “bigger than something”, larger than something. Smaller than something is the opposite there.
“A stomach”. “A stomach” can be a few different things, but in this sense, it is the organ inside your body that begins the digestive process, right? If you swallow some water, if you eat some food, that ends up in your stomach. Okay? The organ “the stomach”, which is the one that is being used here in the expression “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”.
However, your stomach can also be your tummy, your belly. So, that part of your body on the… I guess, on the outside, sort of on the inside, but it’s like between your hips and your ribs on your body. That’s also your stomach. Okay? You can refer to that. You know, you might go to the doctor and he might say, “Give me a look at your stomach. Pull the shirt up and I’ll have a listen to your digestion, you know, using whatever it is, that little device that they use. Show me your stomach.”.
Alright, so the expression “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”. What is the definition? What on earth does this expression mean? Have you guys heard this one before? Does it ring a bell? Have you ever heard this expression? “To have eyes bigger than your stomach” is a way, if we want to use this literally, to talk about people who put too much food on their plate that they can’t eat. Okay? So, their eyes have obviously overestimated how much food that their stomach can take, that can be put into their stomach. So, if you see something delicious on a plate and you put a lot of it on there, more than you’ll ever be able to eat, your eyes are too big for your stomach, obviously, because your eyes have assumed that they can get something incredibly large that your stomach can’t fit in it.
But it can also mean to be greedy, right? If your eyes are bigger than your stomach, you are a greedy person, you want more than you’ll ever actually consume or use.
But then, figuratively, we can use this expression, “to have eyes bigger than your stomach” to mean that you have attempted to do something, you’ve tried to carry something out, you know, a task, a course of action, something, you’ve tried to do it, but it was too much, it was too large, it was too ambitious for you to accomplish. Okay? So, “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”, you tried to do something, but it was too ambitious. You couldn’t actually complete that thing. You overestimated your ability to do that.
So, the origin of this expression. I’m not 100 percent sure where it originally came from, though, I did do a little bit of digging online, and I found that an essay from the 1600s, Montaigne’s essay “Of the Cannibals”, which was published in 1580, but translated into English in 1603, used this expression metaphorically about things other than food. And it was translated to state:
I’m afraid our eyes are bigger than our bellies and that we have more curiosity and capacity for we grasp at all but catch nothing but wind.
Does that make sense? So, I’m afraid our eyes are bigger than our bellies and that our curiosity, we have more of our curiosity than capacity, than the ability to do something. And that which we grasp at, we grasp at everything, but the only thing we actually catch, we get in our hands, is air, is wind, is nothing. Okay?
So, let’s go through three examples, guys, of how I would use the expression “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”.
So, example number one. Okay? And this is the literal example. Imagine that you have gone to a hotel, you’re staying there, you have arrived, you’ve unpacked your bags, you’ve gotten settled in the hotel room, and you’ve gone downstairs, because it’s dinner time and there is an all-you-can-eat buffet so you can… you know, you pay your fee and you can eat as much as you would like. It’s a self-serve buffet. You have to serve yourself. So, the food looks amazing, you want to try everything, you pick up a plate, you get your knife and fork, and you go along the little, I don’t know what it would be like a walkway where you can go to each dish and put a bit on your plate. You fill your plate entirely. This thing is overflowing with food. You sit down, you start eating, but you quickly realise that your eyes were bigger than your stomach, because you put way too much food on your plate then you could actually fit in your stomach. Right? Your eyes are bigger than your stomach.
Example number two. Alright, this time you are at work. Maybe you’re the manager of a team, you know, maybe you’re an engineer and you manage a team of engineers who have to build a structure like a bridge or a building or a wall or a dam, some kind of structure. If you take on a project and it turns out to be incredibly big, way bigger than you originally thought that your team could complete and successfully finish this thing on its own, it’s obvious that your eyes were bigger than your stomach. You tried to take on more than you could do. You overestimated what you could actually achieve. And so, your eyes were bigger than your stomach and in order to finish this project, you have to get outside help.
Example number three. Alright, this time imagine that you are a cage fighter, someone who fights in the UFC, the Ultimate Fighting Championship, in a sport known as Mixed Martial Arts or MMA. Okay? So, this time imagine you are Conor McGregor. Some of you guys might know of Conor McGregor from the UFC. So, I imagine you’re this guy fighting. He took on a fight a few years ago, I think, a year or two ago with a guy called Nate Diaz. This wasn’t long ago. Conor McGregor fought Nate Diaz. And in their first fight, Connor had sort of challenged this guy, but the guy was 5-10 kilos heavier. I think he was one or two weight divisions above Conor McGregor. So, Nate Diaz refused to drop the weight to get to Conor McGregor’s weight division. So, Conor just had to fight him at his natural weight if he wanted to challenge him. He didn’t really have anything to lose. Obviously, he could lose the fight, but if he won the fight, it would be a huge, you know, bragging right of his, because he would have beaten someone a lot bigger than him. However, the first fight didn’t go this way. He ended up getting choked out. So, Nate Diaz put a stranglehold on Conor McGregor, around the neck, and Connor had to tap to say, “I give up. You’ve won!”, and Nate Diaz won the fight. So, obviously, we could say here that Conor McGregor’s eyes were bigger than his stomach. He was very arrogant and thought he could achieve a lot more than he could in reality at this time. He expected to win, but he lost. His eyes were definitely much bigger than his stomach was.
So, hopefully now you understand the expression, guys. Literally, it would be to put too much food on your plate, more than you could actually eat, hence having eyes larger than your stomach. Something that was so delicious, so appealing, you took a bigger portion than you could ever finish. Okay? So, to be pretty greedy.
Figuratively, though, it’s to attempt to do something that is too much, too large, and you can’t accomplish it. Okay? To overestimate what you can achieve. It was too ambitious.
So, let’s go through the listen and repeat exercise, guys, and then we’ll go through the fact about koalas and we will finish up.
So, this this exercise is there to help you practice your pronunciation, guys. Let’s go. Listen repeat after me and practice your English accent. Alright.
To have eyes
To have eyes bigger
To have eyes bigger than
To have eyes bigger than your
To have eyes bigger than your stomach x 5
I had eyes bigger than my stomach
You had eyes bigger than your stomach
He had eyes bigger than his stomach
She had eyes bigger than her stomach
We had eyes bigger than our stomachs
They had eyes bigger than their stomachs
It had eyes bigger than its stomach
Good job, guys. Good job. I really recommend doing these exercises. One, because it will help you work on your pronunciation, which is always important. You know, it doesn’t matter how advanced you get, it’s the kind of thing that you just need to keep practicing, you know, you can’t train to run a marathon, and then never train again and be able to run a marathon any time in the future.
Also, it’s really good because it teaches you to practice grammar passively. You don’t have to focus on it, right? If I say, “I had eyes bigger than my stomach”, “you had eyes bigger than your stomach”, not only are you practicing your pronunciation, but your conjugating the verb “to have” into the past here, “I had”, and you’re also matching up different pronouns, “I” and “my”, “you” and “your”, “he” and “his”. It may seem that it’s pretty simple stuff, but it’s always good to just keep practicing this stuff so that it becomes intuitive and you don’t have to think about it.
So, guys, remember too, if you would like to go more into depth with the pronunciation here in today’s exercise as well as all the previous episodes, if you guys are really trying to nail that Australian English accent or just improve your English accent in general and you want to understand connected speech, pronunciation, intonation, rhythm, all of that sort of stuff, there will be a detailed 10-minute video for this episode and all the previous ones in the Aussie English Classroom. So, make sure that you sign up and give that a go, guys.
Anyway, let’s get into the Aussie English fact for the day. And as I mentioned earlier, this one is all about koalas. How did I think about koalas? What did koala’s have to do with the expression “to have eyes bigger than your stomach”? So, I was sitting there when I was thinking about this expression and I was like, “Okay, stomachs, Australia, Australian animals, stomachs, stomachs, ah! Koalas! They have a crazy digestive system in their stomach, right? In their stomach.”.
So, that’s how I came across this or I made this connection. I used to be a biology student at university, and when I was doing undergrad, I can remember dissecting a dead koala. So, this koala had been road kill. I think it’d… it obviously crossed a road, unfortunately, as a car or a truck was hurtling down the road and they couldn’t stop in time, killing the koala. And so, fortunately, for us, unfortunately, for the koala, the biologist who was running the class found this thing on the road and we were able to dissect it and examine its insides, which is a little morbid, a little macabre, but it is what biology students need to do to learn about these animals.
Anyway, we got to see how crazy its digestive tract was. This is the… everything from the mouth to the anus is the digestive tract. Okay? Your oesophagus, your stomach, your intestines, all the way to the anus. Everything that the food goes through.
So, anyway, I know today’s going to be biology heavy, but bear with me, it’s interesting stuff, guys.
So, koalas have a highly advanced digestive system as compared with other mammals and herbivores specifically, which is specifically adapted to detoxifying the poisonous chemicals in eucalyptus leaves. So, the toxins in these leaves from gum trees, eucalyptus leaves, they’re produced by gum trees in order to protect the trees from being eaten, obviously, by leaf-eating animals like insects, and obviously koalas.
So, these trees grow in all different kinds of places all over Australia in many different types of soils and it seems that the least fertile soils, those with the least amount of nutrients for the trees to use to grow, tend to be the most toxic. Okay? Which makes sense. You know, this is possibly one reason why koalas eat certain types of eucalypts and they live in certain areas with more nutrient-rich soils. Because obviously if you’re a tree trying to grow in very nutrient-poor soil, you don’t really want to be eaten. At least you can’t afford to regrow your leaves as often.
So, the koala’s diet is based 100 percent on these leaves. And koalas are one of only three mammals known to only survive on a diet solely based on eucalyptus leaves. And the other two mammals are also Australian, and they are the Great Glider, a type of marsupial that glides between trees, and the Ringtail Possum, which many of you may see if you are in cities like Melbourne and Sydney. These are those very small possums with the prehensile tail. The tail that curls up.
So, if other animals try and eat these leaves, whether they’re a cow, or a horse, a person, or a dog, best-case scenario is that they will get incredibly sick, and the worst-case scenario is that they would die. So, this is why you never see eucalyptus leaves on the menu in any Australian restaurants, guys.
This is the reason as well why Koalas have developed such a specialised digestive system for consuming their toxic food and absorbing as much nutrients as possible from this food. So, koalas have a highly-adapted fibre-digesting organ called a caecum, which is huge in koalas. It’s up to two metres long. And other animals have these as well including dogs and humans and horses. However, in humans, the caecum is incredibly small and effectively useless. It is the appendix in humans, which is often removed.
The caecum contains bacteria that break down the fibre into substances and the koala can then absorb these more easily through a process called fermentation, which is where bacteria, yeasts, and other organisms use chemicals to break down substances. So, it is effectively how alcohol is produced from sugar in plant material. That is fermentation.
However, that being said, the Koala can still only get to 25 percent of the fibre it eats. So, only a quarter of the food that it eats it is actually able to get the energy from.
A koala eats between 200 and 500 grams of leaves per day, and their teeth are specially adapted to this diet having sharp front incisors to nip the leaves from the tree and molars at the back that are also kind of sharp used to shear and cut the leaves up.
Water is also absorbed through the leaves by the koala so the koala rarely has to drink unless it is in times of drought where it’s really hot and it obviously is dehydrated.
So, being able to get as much nutrients and energy out of these leaves as possible in this food is incredibly important, because eucalyptus leaves are incredibly low in nutritional value, and this is why koalas have to eat so much. And in fact, it’s also why they have such low metabolisms, meaning that they burn less calories, they can conserve more energy for longer periods of time, and it’s the reason why they sleep so long. So, these guys sleep for up to 22 hours a day in order to conserve energy and digest. And it’s the longest sleeping of any animal, even longer than a slow off from places like South America, right? They sleep for up to 15 or 18 hours a day, whereas, the koala sleeps for up to 22 and then eats for the other two.
Anyway, guys, I hope you enjoy this episode. I hope you don’t mind the biology heavy fact about the well-adapted stomach of Australia’s koala. Make sure you go out there and tell someone these awesome facts, because koalas rule! And keep an ear out next time you go camping somewhere in the forest for the koala’s mating call.
Anyway, guys, I hope you have an amazing weekend and I will chat to you in the next episode. Catch ya!
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AE 458 – Vlog: Language Learning Habits, Goals, & Rewards
Try that again, the second time that I’ve done that now, where I’ve started filming and I forgot to turn the stupid microphone on. What is going on, guys? Welcome to this video of the English! I want to talk to you today about setting goals, habits, how I’m obviously going with the repetition system that I have set up, and, I guess, giving yourself rewards, ok? Anyway, don’t forget to subscribe, guys, hit the bell notification if you want to see more videos like this. Let’s get started.
Alright, so… I want to talk to you about goal setting, ok? And habit building. So, for the last few weeks, probably two weeks, I have to check, but I have been using a website Glossika. So, just so you know, this is not sponsored by Glossika, it’s just a program that I really like. So, this website is really nifty, it’s really… It’s really cool. Hopefully, you can see that there, guys. But it is a little bit laborious. It requires a bit of work. Every day when I do these repetitions, and, I guess, let me just see if I can show you what this looks like. Let me just adjust this camera for a sec. Alright. So, what you’re going to see here if I can reverse use this mouse, upside down, let’s see if I can get it… Boom! There we go! Alright! So, what’s happening here is that I have English above that I’ve muted, I don’t want to sound, and then below I have: (French audio). I have French below ok? I’ll just hit space.
So, what’s happening here is that you can set it up where you have the English playing, so you can hear at least your native language, right? So, you can have your native language here, and then, below you can hear, I guess for you guys it would be English. I have French in this example.
Anyway, so I have here, where can I see it? About 150 repetitions that I need to do and it takes about 18 minutes to complete. Every single day I’ve been doing this. It takes 18 minutes of my day give or take. And it’s just a really good exercise. I really like the repetition. I like the fact that it’s a native speaker. (French audio). “Does the film please you? Yeah, it’s really funny”. I like the fact that it’s a native speaker. You can hear his voice, you can hear the intonation, you can hear the rhythm, you can follow it, and it does well, because it gives you time to repeat the sentence. So, as you’ll hear, if I press space here, (French audio). So, firstly they’ve got (French), a question, with a bit of intonation, and then they have the answer to it, (French), and again you can hear the intonation dropping, (French).
So, it is good because it gives you natural content, it gives you someone who’s asking a question, quite often the answer to that question. I think that’s awesome! And what’s more, is that it gives you time to say it out loud. So, you get to hear in native, the content is really good and it’s natural, and you have time to listen and repeat, listen and repeat, listen and repeat. So, this is really good for pronunciation. It’s good for passively learning the patterns, to French, to English for you guys, and it’s really good too, because it’s set up as an SRS program, a Spaced Repetition System, meaning that you see the same sentences again and again and again, except that they are seen less frequently as you go through this system. So, it’s kind of like they’re little reminders so that you are reminded of sentences you learnt yesterday, that you leant a week ago, that you learnt a month ago, etc..
So, that’s a really good system. I really enjoy it. I’ve been working my pronunciation like crazy recently. Just listen repeat, listen repeat. So, that’s the first thing: I like this program. I’ve been doing it every single day and I have tried to remain consistent. I’ve missed one or two days where, for instance, I’ve driven from Canberra to Melbourne, I get here and it’s, you know, late in the evening and I’m just wrecked. So, I’ve missed days every now and then, but I usually try and do it every single day. So, consistency here is the key, guys, consistency is the key.
So, habit building. They say that you need to do something probably for, I think it’s up to two months, so about 60 days or so for it to become a habit that you do every single day. So, if you go to the gym you need to go for about two months consistently for it to become this ingrained, entrenched habit that you’re going to consistently do with very little effort required to keep you maintaining that habit.
So, for me at the moment with this kind of course I have to consistently be trying to do it every single day, put in the effort to remind myself to do it, pick a certain time of the day when I do it, and then just keep doing that every single day, and that’s slowly getting easier for me. It’s been about two weeks. I try and do it usually in the morning, though today, I haven’t done it yet.
And then, I guess, moving on to rewards. It’s important to have a reward set up so that when you finish the task you get something, so that you can feel anticipation for something that you want and that when you get the thing that you want, you didn’t get it for nothing, you worked for it, right? People appreciate something that they have to work for or that they have to pay for a lot more than if they are just given that thing for free or without having to work for it, right?
So, a perfect example for the day, and the reason that I wanted to make this video, was that today I thought it’s 12:23. You can see that on the clock there. 12:23, guys, 12:23, lunchtime. That’s the point. So, it’s lunchtime, it’s lunchtime. I want to go get some lunch. I want to go down and get some Mexican at a place called Zambrero. It’s a franchise here in Australia. I want to grab some Mexican and I thought, “Oh, yeah or I’ll just nick off down the shops, I’ll go grab it. Who cares? I’ve worked a little bit this morning.”. Then I thought, “No. I haven’t done my language learning. I haven’t practised my French. I haven’t practised my Portuguese. I don’t deserve the food yet, ok? So, I can do something for the next 20 minutes, I can work on one of these languages, and then I can reward myself by going down and grabbing some lunch.”.
So, that’s about all I really wanted to talk to you about today, guys, building habits, especially habits involving this kind of language learning. I really like the passive learning of vocabulary, of grammar. I really, really, really like the fact that you just listen and repeat, listen and repeat. I always am emphasizing this for anyone learning languages.
If you’re on your own. There’s no one here right now. Set your computer, set your phone up, get your language learning whatever it is out there and just listen, repeat, listen and repeat.
(French) So, the point is keep doing that again, again and again and work on your… (Portuguese). …and work on your pronunciation it is a never-ending task, guys. And then beyond that, build a habit, take about two months to force yourself to do it every single day until it becomes ingrained, entrenched, you’re going to do this every single day with very little effort. And then, on top of that, don’t forget to reward yourself, guys, even if it is things that you normally give yourself. Make it that you have to learn those things by studying and you’re going to feel a hell of a lot better when you get those things, especially, if it’s junk food or Mexican food.
Anyway, guys. That is it for today. I hope you have an amazing day and I would love to know down below in the comments, what is a reward that you guys give yourself for studying really hard? Is it Mexican food? Anyway, I see you in the next one. Peace!
Alright! Homework complete. It is time to go get some Mexican food. However, it is a little bit chilly outside. I tell you what, guys, that is why I am wearing this jacket, and I probably need some sunglasses as well.
I have to show you this… to show you this house, guys, here. That every time I the street, I’ll pass this house… So, it would be over 100 years old, two balconies, like, right around the house, all wood, absolutely beautiful, but very old.
More pretty houses.
This is what I am talking about. Enjoy your day.
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AE 457 – WWP: Let’s Talk About Marriage in Australia, because… I Got Engaged!
What is going on, guys? Welcome to this episode of Walking with Pete. I have just left the house, walking along the streets here, trying to stay off the main road this time so that the traffic noise isn’t too loud and distracting for you, guys.
But I’m heading off to the shops for my daily walk. Time to get some coffee, time to get out of the house and stretch my legs, get a bit of exercise, as usual. I’m probably almost out of breath trying to talk and walk as fast as I do. So, maybe I should slow down.
Anyway, today I have a pretty cool message for you guys, a pretty cool announcement, as you will have probably worked out or figured out from the title. I am now engaged. I’m engaged to be married. So, yeah, Kel and I got engaged a few days ago, and it wasn’t a very romantic engagement, because I think most people, in western society, have this idea in their head that the stereotypical engagement is that man goes away, buys a ring, an engagement ring, which tends to be a ring with a very big crystal, usually a diamond, on the ring, and then surprises the lady, usually with some kind of romantic outing. You know, you go to a restaurant or maybe you go sightseeing or to some beautiful location, you know, to a lake or in the mountains, to a beach, and then the man is usually expected to surprise the woman by getting down on one knee and presenting the ring and saying the phrase, “Will you marry me?”.
Anyway. That is not what happened. It was kind of a little bit lackluster. It wasn’t very… wasn’t an amazing story, but I thought I would share it with you guys anyway, because I’m sure you’re curious and I’m sure you’re interested in… some of you re probably interested in talking about, you know, engagements or weddings, and learning that kind of vocab and those kinds of expressions. So, it’s a good excuse for a Walking with Pete episode, obviously.
Alright, so what happened? So, Kel and I… Kel and I have a really really good relationship. We’re very open. We are very honest with one another. We talk pretty much every day about our feelings, about our plans, about our roles in the relationship, you know, it’s just each of us is an open book when it comes to discussing, you know, when we’re angry, when we’re upset, when we’re sad, when we’re happy, when we want things done differently, when someone’s irritated at the other person. We tend to be able to talk about these things deeply and then thoroughly pretty quickly if they if they arrive. You know, there isn’t a lot of resentment or anger or anything like that that builds up. And so, as a result of this, we also talk about what we want in the future with each other. And so, we had made dinner, (I) think we’d cooked up some pork sausages and were eating some rice and some veggies with that, sat down at the table and because we’re both in our 30s now, Kel’s 30 and I’m 31, we need to start worrying about having children, you know, it needs to be something that’s up for discussion, because the older you get, especially obviously if you’re a woman, the older you get the harder it can be to have children. And so, you kind of need to at least have a plan, right? Like, once you get to your 30s, you’ve got about 10-15 years left, and the chances of having difficulties significantly increase as you go through those years. And so, anyway, it’s been a topic, and it was funny because originally when Kel and I got together, she had come out of a relationship with someone else and they’d never planned to have kids, and Kel was very, “I don’t want children. I’m not… I don’t think I’d be a good mother.”. All of that sort of thought patterns in her head thinking about these things, and it was funny, within about three, four, definitely after six months, she had done a 180. She’d done a U-turn. She, had completely changed her mind and was definitely interested in having kids now. Probably, because I would bring it up quite a bit and berate her a little bit and talk about it quite a lot.
Anyway so, obviously the discussion would come up and once she had decided that she was like, “Yeah, okay, I’ll have kids eventually.”. Obviously, the next question is, “Well, when?”. And because Kel’s from Brazil, she’s not Australian, we have to figure out how that’s going to work, right? So, it’s a little more difficult if you just wing things, if you just improvise, you know, if we would have just potentially start trying to have a kid tomorrow. And so, we have to, as a result, try and sit down and discuss the timeline, discuss when we’re going to aim to have kids. Does she want to live in Australia? Does she want to be a permanent resident or a citizen in Australia?Does she want to travel? Does she want to see her family? Because all these things obviously have to be sorted out, especially, if you want to travel, if you want to go overseas, if we want to buy a house, if she wants to go and study, we have to work out our finances. So, me being somewhat of a pragmatist, someone who likes to have things organised and sort of sort it out before rushing into things, I mean… some things, right? I do rush into things from time to time. But me being that kind of personality, I would have these conversations with Kel pretty occasionally.
And okay. So, back to the story of getting engaged. We were sitting down at the table, talking about things as usual, and talking about her plan for children, and now she wants to have them as soon as possible effectively, which isn’t, you know, within weeks or months, but it’ll be in the next year and a half. And so, once we had sort of decided when that was going to happen, you know, in which month of which year, pretty much, we sort of had planned out when we were going to start trying, because we sort of, you know, don’t want to waste time, we want to get the ball moving, and we’re in Canberra at the moment, but we have to move back, or we don’t have to, but we want to move back after her contract is up at work. And so, we want to time the birth of the child be several months after her contract has ended.
And so, once we’d sort of figured that out we knew exactly which month to start in and that was when I was like, “Well, we should probably talk about marriage then too, right? Like, if we’ve decided in which month of which year we’re going to have kids or start having kids start trying to have children, then it probably makes sense to decide, do you want to get married? Do you not want to get married? When would you like to get married? What would you like to do when you get married? Do you want to save up a lot of money and buy a dress? Do you want to have a really huge wedding with a lot of people? Do you want your family from Brazil to come over to Australia? Do you want my family from Australia to go to Brazil? Where do you want to have the wedding? Do one of two of them?”.
And so, once those sort of questions started coming up, we were discussing it and we both agreed that it probably makes sense, for us at least, to get married. And then, as soon as that happened I said, “Well, I guess now it’s not a matter of if, but a matter of when. So, we might as well say were engaged, right? Are you my fiancée? Am I your fiancé? Are we engaged now?”. And she looked at me and was like, “I guess we are.”.
So, that was pretty much how it happened. That was pretty much how we got engaged. Very, very lackluster, not very romantic, but very pragmatic, very systematic, organized. But yeah, that’s how it happened.
But it is interesting. I guess, I want to talk a little bit about marriage in Australia and why what it’s like and why I’m going to get married to Kel, and how we planned to get married, I guess, so to give you guys a bit of an insight into what marriage is like in Australia.
Australia’s obviously, at least as far as I know, I think, I think it’s still, Christian majority. There’s probably a lot of atheists of which I’m definitely one. I mean, I’m an atheist in that I have no religion. I’m not really… I don’t practice any specific religion. So, for the most part, the stereotype of a wedding is a Christian wedding where you have… the woman gets a white dress, she has a white veil on, the groom wears a suit, usually a tuxedo, I think, usually, like a… can be different colors, but usually a dark coloured suit, and they will, I think, less and less often now, but back in the day, these… the couple would obviously get married in a church. If it’s a Christian marriage, you would usually get married in a church, which would involve the groom, and the groom’s party, the groomsmen, the other the other guys that are helping the groom on his day, the best man who is the prime and that helps the groom. And then, there’ll be a few other guys who are there for moral support in the small things. They tend to arrive earlier to their church, and they’re waiting there as the bride and the bride’s party, the bridesmaids and the maid of honour, the primary maid in the bride’s party, in the bridal party, will be bringing the bride to the church, and then she gets walked down the aisle to the groom by her father.
So, that’s sort of the traditional way. And then, you’ll have the… what would you call him? The priest? Or whoever the guy is at the church. You know, he’ll preside over the wedding, he’ll then, you know, say a few things, he’ll have the bride and groom say their vows, he’ll then say, “Do you take this woman to be your wife? Do you take this man to be your husband?”. And then, the… each of them will say, “I do. I do.”. And they have put rings on each other’s left hand, on the second finger, their wedding rings, by that point. And then, you’ll hear the expression, or the saying, “You may now kiss the bride.”. And then, everyone usually cheers. And that’s sort of standard western wedding.
But more and more these days, things are changing, because obviously Australia is becoming less and less of a religious country, like most western countries I feel, except for maybe the US, people now are using celebrants, which are not necessarily affiliated with any church in order to get married. So, they’ll use a celebrant to marry them. They will do it outdoors. They’ll do it at houses like families houses. They’ll set up ceremonies in certain places. There’s places you can go. Like, a friend’s wedding I went to last year was in the Dandenong Ranges and this is like a mountain range in Victoria where there’s all of these huge trees in these forests. It was really beautiful. It was outdoors. And they just had a, I guess, agnostic or atheist celebrant. Someone who’s not affiliated with any church who marries them. And so, that was a really good wedding, but that’s happening more and more and more.
So, I guess, coming back to Kel and I, and how we planned to get married, it’s probably going to be about as crazy, about as wild, about as romantic as the proposal, where I think we’re more interested in just seeing friends and having maybe a get together, some kind of party, and spending time with friends, and then just signing the papers and getting the rings, and that probably be it, a kind of, you know, small party with just friends and family, because to be honest, and I’m sure some of you guys probably understand that weddings can be frickin expensive, weddings can be really, really expensive. I’ve had friends who have had really wealthy families and their families end up spending, you know, tens of thousands of dollars on weddings. And I think Kel and I are both not really the kind of people who like spending a lot of money on things. We’re not very flashy. We don’t like showing off wealth or anything like that. Mostly because we don’t have any wealth.
But, so, I think we’re just keen to save as much money as possible through that kind of process or event of becoming married and spending the same, you know, time with friends and family, whether or not we spend a bit on food or something might be a different story. And I think part of the complexity there, or part of the reason we want to do that is too because our families are both on completely different continents. Obviously, Kel’s family is from Brazil and South America. My family is from Australia. And so, it would just be a nightmare or at least more complicated than it needs to be if each of us wanted to get our families together for a wedding or have a wedding with both of our families separately. Long story short, it would just costs a lot of money.
So, that is where we are currently at. So, we’re not sure when it’s going to be. We don’t know how it’s going to be, but it’ll probably be in the next year or so, I guess.
And so that’s the story, guys. That is the story. That is how I got engaged, and it’s funny, because it’s one of those situations where if you’d told me a year ago when I was single that this was going to be the way in which I would get engaged and then planned to get married, I would definitely not have believed.
Anyway so, I am getting close now to the cafe. I might go grab my coffee, guys. Thank you so much for hanging out. Thanks for listening. If you guys have an interesting story that you would like to share about how you got engaged or how you got married or even just about the different cultural practices of getting engaged or married in your country, then please, please let me know. Send me a message. Comment on this wherever you see it on the website, on Facebook, and let me know. So, you know, another excuse to use your English.
Anyway, that’s long enough, guys. I hope you have an amazing day. Get outside, do some exercise, and drink more coffee. And I’ll chat to you soon. See you, guys.
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