In this episode of Aussie English I answer the question, “How can I improve my pronunciation?”, particularly when you’re home alone!
In this episode of Aussie English I answer the question, “How can I improve my pronunciation?”, particularly when you’re home alone!
In this short episode of Aussie English we have a quick chat as I answer Duy’s question about what the difference is between WHILE and WHILST.
What’s the difference between “while” and “whilst” says Duy, and I hope I’m saying that correct, Duy.
“While” and “whilst”, “whilst*”. I would use these interchangeably.
They’re exactly the same thing. “Whilst” is probably rarer, slightly less common, although I would use that.
So that might be a little elevated with regards to your English.
If you use that you’re going to sound a little bit more intelligent.
It’s one of those things where you can use them both.
They’re just used at different frequencies.
More educated people overall… I do know it’s a bit pretentious, but I think I would hear my academics using “whilst” all the time.
Whereas, “while” would be used by everyone.
So, it’s up to you. I think, personally, I would use them both.
It would just depend on whatever it is in my head that decides which one I want to use it at any time.
G’day. Thanks for watching the video.
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Thanks so much guys. Stay awesome. All the best.
In this episode of Aussie English I celebrate reaching the 300th episode by answering all your questions!
How’s it going? How have you been? What you been up to? What you’ve been up to?
That’s a really good greeting in Australian English. What you been up to? What have you been up to?
“What have you been up to?” meaning “what have you been doing?”.
How has your week been going? I hope you guys have been well. I finally had my final presentation for the PhD.
So, I spent all week, well all the fortnight really, the last two weeks, putting that together practicing it, rehearsing it.
And then, yesterday, the day before yesterday, on Thursday, I got to present in front of the University.
That said, there weren’t that many people there. It was probably a small room of about 20 people.
It was pretty good. It took about, you know, 30 or 40 minutes for me to get through my 96 slides in my Power Point presentation for these guys.
But, yeah, (I) felt really good. We had pizza afterwards. I hung around with everyone there for a bit.
And then, (I) had to jump back home and give some private lessons.
So, it was a good day except for the fact that it pissed down rain.
So, it was raining cats and dogs as we had to walk from the Museum over to the University.
So, the University requires me to give my final presentation in the University or at the university, although I am based at the Museum.
So, I’m normally at the Museum because my supervisor is based at the museum.
That’s where he works. And so, I work there with him.
But I am enrolled through Melbourne University.
Anyway, so, aside from that, last night we went out. So, it was a big party with the lab that I work in.
So, all the people that I work with who are also students studying at the Museum.
We went out to a place called The Napier Hotel. N-A-P-I-E-R. And that is in Fitzroy.
So, for anyone living in Melbourne or planning to visit Melbourne, I really recommend going to the Napier, N-A-P-I-E-R, in Fitzroy, because they have the most amazing parmas.
So, “parma” is an Australian slang term for parmigiana. I’m probably saying that incorrectly.
Basically, a parma is a dish, a certain food, where you get… you usually get a salad, some chips, and you’ll get a chicken breast that’s been cooked in crumbs.
And then it usually has ham on top with cheese on top of that with tomato sauce on it as well.
Forgive me, my alarm just went off.
So, parmas are one of my favourite meals to go out and have in Australian pubs.
The Napier is an Australian pub.
This is one of these stereotypical Australian meals that you’ll find if you go out and about in Australia.
And so, the reason the one at The Napier is so good is because they use smoked kangaroo.
So, that may come as a bit of a shock to some of you guys, but we can eat kangaroo in Australia.
They are actually a pest species.
There’s way way way too many of them because of all the farming that we do.
They breed like crazy. Anyway, we can eat them. We have them often at restaurants.
You can get them at Woolworths, which is a supermarket chain.
But, the Napier’s so good because it’s smoked kangaroo that they use instead of ham.
Anyway, these parmas are huge. They’re about the size of your head. Really really really good good food.
On top of that, we drank a whole heap of beer.
Definitely more than I should have drunk, but I made it home in the end.
I, you know, walked home through the streets after hanging out with all of my friends, and we all parted ways, and (I) came home and pretty much got straight into bed.
So, I got home, walked through the door, and hit the sack. I hit the hay.
I went to bed pretty much straight away. So, that’s been my week.
That’s been my last evening. I am now sitting here in front of my computer chatting to you guys with a coffee.
So, (I’m) trying to sort of, hopefully, cleanse a little bit today, and be a little more healthy.
I might go get a salad for lunch. Anyway, today’s going to be an awesome episode, guys.
Let’s get into it.
So, today’s expression is “to cross a bridge” or “to cross that bridge when you come to it”.
“To cross that bridge when you come to it”. As usual guys, let’s just get into it.
Let’s define the words in the expression to cross that bridge or to cross a bridge when you come to it.
So, “to cross”, “to cross something”, this is to traverse something, to pass over something.
To go from one place to another place to cross something.
So, you could cross a river if you use a bridge to literally go across the river.
You cross the river. You could cross an ocean if you were in a boat. You could cross the ocean by sailing.
Or you could be in a plane and you could fly over the ocean, to cross it.
You could cross the ocean by flying over it. So, that’s the verb “to cross”.
“A bridge.” “A bridge” is a structure for walking, for driving, for riding across to pass over something usually a road or a river, a building, a path.
A bridge is a structure for crossing something else, for going over something else. A bridge.
“To come to”, “to come to something” is to arrive at something.
So, “to come to a stop” is to arrive at a stop. “To come to a place” is to arrive at a place.
So, I could say, “Today, I have come to this beach to go for a swim. I have arrived at this beach to go for a swim”.
“To come to” is to arrive at.
As usual, let’s go through and define the expression, guys.
So, if you say to someone, “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.” or you tell them that they need to cross that bridge when they come to it, it means that they need to solve that problem when and if it arises.
So, it’s a metaphor for solving a problem, for overcoming an obstacle when and if it arrives, when and if it happens.
So, “we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it” will mean that we’ll worry about, quite literally, crossing that bridge, we’ll worry about going over that bridge, when we get to the bridge, when we arrive at the bridge.
But figuratively, if we use this as a metaphor, it means that we will solve that problem, we will overcome that obstacle, whatever the obstacle or whatever the problem is, when we get to it, when we arrive at it, when we come to it.
So, to cross the bridge when we come to it is to solve a problem when it happens.
As usual, let’s talk about some examples of how we would use this expression in everyday life guys.
So, imagine, number one, that you are going on a road trip. You’re going on a road trip around Australia.
So, maybe you’re driving from Perth all the way east to Victoria, to Melbourne, where I live.
And then, you’re going to drive all the way north up the east coast of Australia to Cairns.
And that’s thousands and thousands of kilometres.
I think it be about 12,000 kilometres to do those two legs of that trip.
To drive from Perth to Melbourne. The first leg.
And then, to drive the second leg from Melbourne to Cairns.
So, it’s a huge road trip that you’ve got planned, and you have an old car.
So, the car’s a bit of a bomb. You’re worried the car’s going to break down.
It’s going to stop functioning. So, that something in the engine is going to go wrong.
Maybe something will break. A cable will break. Maybe the radiator will blow.
Something’s going to happen and the car’s going to break down. This is what you’re worried about.
If you say to someone, “What happens if the car breaks down?”, the other person could say to you “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.”
And they’re saying that meaning, “We will worry about that problem when it happens. We’ll worry about overcoming that obstacle, the obstacle of the car breaking down, if it happens, when it happens. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.”
Number two. Imagine you’re planning a surprise birthday for your mother, for your mum.
So, you want to plan this awesome epic surprise birthday with all your relatives, with all of her friends, with all of the gifts.
You’re going to cook up a barbie.
You’re going to have a whole bunch of food. It’s going to be an amazing party.
But your mother hates surprises. She absolutely hates surprises.
So if someone said to you, “Oh man! What happens when she gets here and she freaks out, she gets angry because it’s a surprise and you know your mother hates surprises?”
You could say, “Well, if she gets angry about it we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. You can cross that bridge when you come to it. I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. We’ll worry about this problem, we’ll worry about the obstacle that is mum getting angry about this surprise birthday party, when and if it happens. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.“
So, the last example, example number three, is that you are worried about an upcoming exam for an incredibly difficult subject that you are studying at university.
So, I imagine that you’re studying something like, at least for me, maths.
I was awful at maths as a kid, and I was awful at university, and I still am awful at maths.
Imagine that you’re studying for an exam that you need to pass in order to continue studying, and you’re incredibly worried that you’re going to fail it.
Maybe you say to someone, “Oh, I’ve got to study for this exam. I have to go and complete it. I have to get at least this score. I’m really worried that if I don’t I’m going to get thrown out of university.”
Someone could say to you, “Look, just do your best. You’ve still got several weeks to study. Do your best. See how you go, and if things go badly we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. We will cross that bridge when we come to it. We’ll worry about that obstacle or that problem when and if it happens. You can cross that bridge when you come to it.”
So, as usual guys, let’s go in, let’s dive in, let’s do a listen and repeat exercise where you guys can practice your pronunciation.
So, listen and repeat after me, guys, and try to sound exactly like I do as a native English speaker.
To cross that bridge.
To cross that bridge.
To cross that bridge when you come to it.
To cross that bridge when you come to it.
I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.
You’ll cross that bridge when you come to it.
He’ll cross that bridge when he comes to it.
She’ll cross that bridge when she comes to it.
We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.
They’ll cross that bridge when they come to it.
It will cross that bridge when it comes to it.
Good job, guys. Good job.
So, now as usual, let’s have a little quick chat about pronunciation and connected speech, guys, and how it relates to the expression “To cross that bridge when you come to it”.
In this one, I want you to notice that when we say “To_w_it”, “To_w_it”, “To_w_it” we join the two vowels that “-o” and the “i-“, “To_w_it”, with a W-sound.
So, this happens all the time in English.
And this, again, is not just Australian English. This is all forms of English.
When we have two vowels either side of one another, one at the end of a word, for instance “to”, and the other at the start of a word, in this case “it”, we link them.
And we’ll link them with either a “Weh” sound, a W sound, “Weh”, or a “Yeh” sound, a Y sound, a “Yeh”.
So, in this case, it’s a W. It’s a W sound. “To_w_it”.
So, listen and repeat after me, guys. I’m going to say “To_w_it” five times.
Practice your pronunciation, and then we’ll go through the listen and repeat exercise one more time so that you can practice this pronunciation and connected speech tip.
I’ll cross that bridge when I come to_w_it.
You’ll cross that bridge when you come to_w_it.
He’ll cross that bridge when he comes to_w_it.
She’ll cross that bridge when she comes to_w_it.
We’ll cross that bridge when we come to_w_it.
They’ll cross that bridge when they come to_w_it.
It’ll cross that bridge when it comes to_w_it.
Great job guys. Great job.
Remember, that as usual, as I always go over at the end here, if you want to sign up to be a member go over to www.TheAussieEnglishPodcast.com, and click on Learn English Faster.
You can sign up and become an Aussie English supporter straight away, you can become a member, and you can get access to all the bonus content for this episode, as well as all the previous expression episodes.
So, the bonus content includes MP3s, a more thorough PDF of the transcript, and you get access to all of these exercises that are designed to teach you to speak English and to understand English just like a native speaker.
So, we go through substitution and phrasal verb exercises, we go through pronunciation in connected speech exercises, grammar exercises, slang exercises, listening comprehension exercises, everything that you need to take your English to the next level faster.
Aside from that, guys, if you want to support Aussie English you can become a patron on the Aussie English Patreon page.
This is a page that you go to online where you can donate money.
You can choose the amount that you wish to donate. It happens on a monthly basis.
So, you can donate anything from one dollar each month in order to support me creating this content for you guys.
So, you can donate one dollar. You can donate more than a dollar if you choose.
It’s totally up to you guys.
But it is a way for you to support me directly and to be a deeper part of the Aussie English community.
So, thank you to all the current patrons on there.
It means the world to me that you guys are supporting me (to) create this content to help everyone learn Australian English.
Anyway, guys I hope you have a great week. Keep practicing your English.
Keep practicing speaking, reading, listening, and writing.
Keep at it, and I’ll chat to you soon.
See ya guys!
G’day guys. Welcome to this episode of Aussie English.
I am Pete, your host, and this is the podcast, the number one podcast, for learning Australian English.
So, whether you want to learn how to sound like an Australian, to speak like an Australian, or just to understand Australians when they speak English, this is the podcast for you.
I’ve just gotten back from a little café run. I’ve ran out to the cafe with a friend.
It was a quick run, a quick stop off, to a cafe. We went and had a coffee.
I had a muffin. It was choc-chip. It was pretty nice. He also had a muffin.
This is my friend Dave who lives in Geelong. I went to high school with Dave.
He just dropped in, came past, said hello, and asked me out for coffee.
So, I went out to do that.
We had a nice little coffee, had a bit of a chat, a bit of a yarn, just, yeah, caught up overall.
I just got back. It’s pretty cold outside.
It’s a Saturday afternoon, and I thought it would be the perfect time to record this week’s episode.
So, this week’s episode is going to be focusing on the expression “to go walkabout”, “to go walkabout”.
So, as usual, we’ll dive in and we’ll define the words in the expression “to go walkabout” first.
So, obviously, the verb “to go” is to move from one place to another.
It’s to travel somewhere. You can go to work. So, you can go from home to work.
Or you can go away for a holiday. So, you can travel. You can go away.
You can go on a trip, on a journey, on a holiday.
“Walk”. The word “to walk”, or the verb “to walk”, or it could also be a noun, “a walk”.
This is to move at a regular pace, putting one foot in front of the other.
So you might walk to work. Or you could use it as a noun. You might go for a walk to work.
That’s the word “walk”.
“To walk about”. We can turn this into a phrasal verb.
So we can add the word “about” after the verb, “To walk about”.
And I might also add here that you can also see this with the word “around”, “to walk around” or “to walk about”.
And often these can be used interchangeably to mean the same thing.
So “to walk about” means to walk around, to walk in many directions, to walk with no real destination, to walk with no purpose.
So, if I go outside and I walk around, it’s kind of like I’m outside walking, but I have no real purpose.
I have no real destination. I’m just out the front walking in many directions.
I’m walking about or I’m walking around.
So I might be out walking around in my garden or I might be out walking about in my garden.
So hopefully you get what that phrasal verb means.
If you walk, that’s the action of walking, but if you add “about” or “around” to it that is walking, but in many directions and with no real purpose.
So that’s the phrasal verb.
It can be turned into this noun where we connect “about” with “walk”.
So, it becomes one word, “walkabout”, “walkabout”. This has a really really cool origin guys.
This is tied in with aboriginal culture. I couldn’t really find where it first came from.
I probably need to try and research that more deeply, but when I was trying to google this I couldn’t really find how these English words became used by aboriginal people to mean what it does.
And so, when this is used by aboriginal people, when aboriginal people go on walkabout or they go walkabout typically this is a journey, originally on foot, where Australian aboriginal people, the native Australians who have been here for fifty thousand years, they would do this in a sort of traditional manner, often as a rite of passage for young boys.
So, young boys in a tribe of Aborigines would go off on walkabout, they would go away on walkabout, into the bush, and they would have to survive off the land by themselves for a certain amount of time, and this amount of time could be upwards of six months.
So, it could be six months or more. And so, this was their initiation into adulthood.
It was when boys, if they could do this then they would become mature adults and they would be considered men.
So, they could show that they could survive on their own, in the wild, in the bush, in the outback, and survive by living off the land, effectively.
So, that’s the traditional sense of “walkabout”.
So, make sure that you check out this episode’s transcript, guys, because I will also add in some extra links for you to read more about “walkabout” and this culture that aborigines have with going away for this long period of time when they’re kids to sort of become adults.
But we’ll go through now and define the expression, “to go walkabout”.
So, “to go walkabout”, obviously, originally meant for a young aboriginal adolescent, a young boy, between the age of about 10 and 13 to go away and survive in the wild for six months or so.
So to become a man.
So “to go walkabout” in that sense would mean to pass through (to*) manhood in the wild, live off the land, for a period of time.
It can also be used for adult aborigines today who decide to go away and seek sort of like spiritual enlightenment.
So, they might want time away from Western culture.
They want to sort of reconnect with the land, seek a bit more spiritual engagement, a bit of spiritual enlightenment.
So, they might refer to that as “going walkabout”.
However, the sense of this expression that I’m going to hear most commonly as someone who lives in a city away from, you know, land where there are a lot of aboriginals that are practicing culturally, most of the time and I hear this it means for something to disappear, for something to be misplaced, for something to be lost, for something to not be found, that you can’t find something.
So, as usual, we’ll go through some examples, guys.
Imagine that you’ve met an aboriginal who has literally gone on walkabout or is going on walkabout.
He might say that he is about to go into the bush and seek spiritual enlightenment, reconnect with the land.
So he’ll go off into the bush for a predetermined amount of time.
It could be weeks it could be months. Maybe it will just be the weekend.
But he is going to go into the bush, into the outback, and potentially live off the land for a bit, reconnect with his roots, reconnect with the culture.
Maybe he’ll be eating native animals like roos, possums and goannas.
He’ll be taking part in cultural rituals. It could be alone, it could be with people.
But it can be used in that sense. He’s gone walkabout or he’s gone on walkabout.
A second example, could be that say I’ve gone out for the day, and my parents don’t know where I am.
So they might say, “Oh, Pete’s gone walk about.”, meaning that Pete has disappeared.
We can’t find him. He’s gone out.
We know he’s gone out somewhere, but we don’t know where, we don’t know for how long.
He’s disappeared. So, he’s gone away for an undetermined amount of time today.
“Where’s Pete?”, “Oh, I dunno. He’s gone walkabout.”
You could also say this if you couldn’t find, say, your car keys.
So, imagine that you’ve lost your car keys, you can’t find it, you can’t find them*, rather.
You might say to someone, “I can’t find my car keys. They’ve gone walkabout.”.
So, this is just a way of saying that they have disappeared, they’ve gone missing.
“I’ve lost my keys. They’ve gone walkabout. I can’t find my keys. (I) Dunno where they are.”.
So those are three examples, guys, to explain the expression, “to go walkabout”.
As usual, let’s go through a little listen and repeat exercise, guys, where we’ll go through using the expression “to go walkabout”, and it means, in this case, to go missing.
So listen and repeat after me, guys.
Walkabout x 3
I’ve gone walkabout.
You’ve gone walk about.
He’s gone walkabout.
She’s gone walkabout.
We’ve gone walkabout.
They’ve gone walk about.
It’s gone walkabout.
So, hopefully that was a good exercise, guys.
It’s also contracting the verb “to have” in the present tense.
When we form that past tense with “gone” the past participle of “to go”.
So, hopefully, that’s a good exercise for you guys.
As usual, let’s have a quick chat about the pronunciation and connected speech in this section.
So, you might have noticed that when I say “walkabout”, “walkabout”, I kind of really quickly skip over the “a” in the middle.
So, I don’t say “walkabout” I say “walkəbout”, “walkəbout”, walkabout.
So this is the schwa vowel sound, guys.
And you’ll often hear this in quite a few words in English, but “about” is the perfect example here.
In fact, I’m not even saying “about” I’m saying “əbout”, “əbout”. So, “walkabout”.
So, let’s practice the schwa sound five times. I’ll say the word “about” five times.
And then I’ll give you five sentences with the word “about” in them.
ə x 5
əbout x 5
I’ve gone walkəbout.
What are you talking əbout.
It’s all I thought əbout.
What are you shouting əbout.
He’s just walking əbout outside.
So, that’s it for this episode guys. I hope you’ve enjoyed it.
And remember, if you want all the bonus exercises for this episode that are going to go over things like phrasal verbs including the words “about” and “around”, I’m also going to go deeper into pronunciation of the schwa vowel sound, and then in the grammar section we’re going to also practice more phrasal verbs as well as tenses, but phrasal verbs with “about” and “around”.
Remember you can sign up to be a member on the Aussie English website.
And you can try it for a dollar.
So give it a go, and let’s take your Australian English to the next level.
Anyway guys, I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode, and I’ll chat to you soon.
G’day guys. How’s it going?
Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. Episode Two hundred and seventy three.
So this is an expression episode, and before we dive into things today I just want to have a chat to you about everything, about what I’ve been up to, about what Aussie English has been up to.
So at the moment I am sitting in my room, obviously. I am recording this podcast.
It is Saturday afternoon, 2:00 p.m., and it is raining quite heavily outside.
So I had to run out there earlier and grab my clothing, my clothes, off the line, off the clothesline, because they were drying out there, and the rain suddenly started pouring down.
It started raining cats and dogs as we often say in English, and I had to run out there.
Got my feet wet. Got a little bit wet as well on the top of the head.
Although, the water tends to fall straight off my bald head.
And I managed to grab all of my clothing and bring it inside before it got too wet.
So aside from that I’ve been working at the restaurant. That’s been fun.
It was pretty busy in the last few weeks, because we had three of the Spanish speaking people there go either on a holiday or go home.
So one of my friends Carlos went back to Spain, back to Barcelona, and another girl from Chile were in Canada for a week, and a Colombian girl, Sandra, was travelling around Australia with her family.
So her family came over to see her and she’s been travelling around.
Aside from that, obviously, I’ve been working on Aussie English.
I’ve been doing quite a few videos recently, guys, where I’ve been trying to help with Australian pronunciation and different words that we pronounce differently.
So if you haven’t checked out the YouTube channel I definitely recommend that you jump over there.
Just search Aussie English on YouTube, and check out some of the more recent videos that I’ve put up.
I put up one last night on the /ɑ/ sound that we say at the end of words that end in -er, -re, -or, -ar, -a, -ure and -our.
Quite often in English they are pronounced /ɑ/, at least in Australian English with our dialect.
Anyway. That’s a nice little intro there for you guys. I should dive into the expression.
Cut to the chase. Get to the crux of the lesson today.
So the expression today is to take the bull by the horns, to take the bull by the horns.
As usual, we’ll go through and define the words first in this expression.
So “to take”. We’ve gone over this a few times in recent expressions.
“To take”, in this example “to take” means to hold, to grasp or to grab it.
So if you take something or someone by something you are holding something of theirs and leading them somewhere.
So if you took someone by the hand it means that you have grabbed their hand, you’ve grasped their hand, you’re holding their hand and you’re potentially leading them somewhere.
So you’ve taken someone by the hand.
“A bull”. “A bull” is a male cow, you know, mooooo. “A bull” is the male cow it’s the cow that has horns.
At least, I think most cows have just the males with horns.
There could be breeds where both the males and females have horns.
But typically the bull is the large male cow that has horns.
And “a horn”, “a horn” is a bony protrusion.
So something that protrudes, it comes out of the head of a bull.
It grows out of the animal’s head and other animals have horns including the rhinoceros, which can have one or two horns on its nose on its head.
Deer have horns. Moose have horns.
And then we even have animals like rhinoceros beetles, you know, those small beetles with big horns on their head that they fight one another with.
There’s (there’re*) chameleons that have horns.
These are those lizards that can change colour, chameleons.
Some male chameleons I think can have horns.
And then obviously creatures like a unicorn can have a horn.
The mythical horse that has a big horn coming out of its head.
And then even species of whales. So the Narwal is a species of whale that has a horn.
Although the horn is actually a tooth that grows through the front of its head.
And I found some cool stuff out about Narwals recently.
I might have to do an episode on that in the future.
So to define the expression “to take the bull by the horns”.
“To take the bull by the horns” means to confront a problem head on, right away, versus sitting back and waiting for it to resolve itself, or for a person to tackle it, to confront that problem for you.
And “grab the bull by the horns” is also a very similar idiom that’s commonly used.
So it’s similar, but it uses the verb “to grab” instead of the verb “to take”, but it means the same thing.
So as usual, I looked up the origin of this expression.
And the exact origins of this phrase aren’t really known.
It said that it originated from bullfighting around 1800, and the term likely alludes to grass being a safely tethered bull and not one that the matador is fighting in the ring.
However, other people have argued that the idiom originates from the American West, instead of bullfighting in places like Spain, and that it found its roots in rodeos where it was common for ranchers and cowhands, so the people who grew and took care of bulls, and, you know, raised them as livestock, and then sold them.
It was common for these guys to attempt their luck at steer wrestling.
So “steer” as in the male cow, so bulls. A steer as a young one.
And it was said that the only way to really control and bring down a steer, a young bull, was to grab it by the horns, and then you could control the head.
And if a person tried to grab it elsewhere they stood the risk of being bashed or gored by the horns of the steer or the bull.
So, regardless of the exact origin there is one thing that is certain and that is that it’s a bad idea to grab a ball by the horns.
So, let’s go through some examples, guys, of how you would use this expression.
So, example one, imagine that you have worked at your job for a very long time, and you are wanting to ask for a raise.
And “a raise” is a pay increase. So you want to go to your boss…
Maybe you work as an engineer or a lawyer or a scientist.
You want to go to the boss the guy who hires you or the guy who manages you, the guy above you, and you want to ask him for a pay increase.
You work more than what you paid. You do overtime. Maybe you work extra hours for free.
You even take your work home at times, which could make your partner incredibly unhappy or stressed.
You know you deserve a raise, but you’re very nervous when it comes to asking for one.
So, you’re worried that at best your boss will say no and at worst you may lose your job.
But ultimately you chat to your partner, your wife, your husband, and they tell you, “look, just take the bull by the horns and ask for a raise. Do the difficult thing. Take the bull by the horns. Grab the bull by the horns. Confront this difficult situation head on. Take the bull by the horns.”
So, example number two, maybe you want to travel, but you are worried about leaving your home country.
So you’re nervous about living overseas, somewhere foreign, somewhere unknown, without any friends, without any family nearby.
Although, you know that there are going to be many benefits and amazing experiences that you’re going to have when you travel abroad.
Your friends and family might say, “look just do it. Move abroad. See how you go. Grab the bull by the horns. Take the bull by the horns. You can do this. It’s time to take the bull by the horns. Buy the plane tickets and just go. Take the bull by the horns.”
Example number three. Imagine that a family member drinks too much.
So, this person has become a bit of a problem, and he or her (she*) has turned into a bit of an alco, and “alco” is slang for an alcoholic.
He or she drinks a lot of alco or a lot of booze at parties, at family events.
Maybe they always have a tinnie in their hand, or a stubby in their hand.
And “a tinnie” is a can of booze or alcohol, and “a stubby” is a bottle of booze or alco, alcohol, that you hold and drink.
So, imagine that they’re always at these family events getting drunk and then causing a scene.
So they’re doing something stupid. They’re saying something stupid.
Maybe they’re not even doing that. They’re falling over or spilling things.
It’s obvious that the alcohol has become a problem.
You and your family want the person to stop and you all agree that it’s time to take the bull by the horns and mention something to this person.
It’s time to say, “look alcohol is a problem. You need to do something about it.”
It’s time to take the bull by the horns.
It’s time to grab the bull by the horns and ask this person to do something about their drinking.
So you have to confront this problem head on and tell them it’s not on. It’s not okay.
It has to stop. It’s time to take the bull by the horns.
So let’s do a listen and repeat exercise as usual guys, and we’ll do this one in the Simple Past.
And remember “to take”, the verb “to take” is an irregular verb.
So when we turn this into the Simple Past the past participle is “took”.
I took, you took, he took, she took, we took, they took, it took. It’s all the same.
So listen and repeat after me guys.
I took the bull by the horns.
You took the ball by the horns.
He took the bull by the horns.
She took the bull by the horns.
We took the bull by the horns.
They took the bull by the horns.
It took the bull by the horns.
One little thing that I want to mention here guys as I’ve been doing recently is a pronunciation tip, and we’re going to go over this in the Aussie English Support Pack in more depth.
But in this example sentence I, you, he, she, we, they, or it took the bull by the horns, there’s a dark L that is pronounced.
And it sounds a little more like a W.
And this is obviously at the end of “bull”. And you’ll hear me say “bull” instead of “bull”, “bull”.
So that is with the L well pronounced, “bull”.
But quite often across a lot of English dialects, not just Australian English, we will sort of mute the L and we don’t pronounce it like a “Leh”.
And it sounds more like a “ew” a W kind of sound. So, “bu-w”, “bu-w”, as opposed to “bull”.
So I’ll say some sentences to show you here guys.
“I’m not ab-ew to”, see I said I’m not “ab-ew” instead of “I’m not able”.
“I drove into the poo-w”. I said “poo-w” instead of “pool”.
“I drank a lot of mi-wk”. I said “mi-wk” instead of “milk” with the L sound there.
“He had a litt-w bu-w”. “Litt-ew” instead of “little”, and “bu-w” instead of “bull”.
And now I try and do a sentence with all of these.
“I wi-w be ab-w to see the bu-w in the litt-w poo-w that was fu-w of mi-wk”.
So I’ve tried to use dark L’s, as they’re called, the W sound in there instead of, “I will be able to see the bull in the little pool that was full of milk”.
So we’re going to go over this more in the Aussie English Supporter Pack guys.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode. Just a quick mention if you guys want to upgrade your learning, if you want to learn faster, I really recommend signing up to the Aussie English Supporter Pack.
It’s a dollar to try it for a month.
In this episode, we’re going to have a vocab glossary and table, listening comprehension questions for this entire episode, a substitution exercise going over the phrase or verb “to turn into”.
We’re going to go over slang related to drinking.
We’re going to go over the dark L that sounds like a W for pronunciation and connected speech.
And then in the grammar exercise we’re going to compare the Simple Past with the Perfect Past.
If you sign up to this, guys, you’re going to really upgrade your English learning.
You’re going to learn a lot faster.
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So, I really recommend that you give it a go, guys.
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I hope you guys have a great week.
See you later.
Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. I hope you guys have been having a great week.
And for everyone joining us for the first time welcome.
Thanks for listening to the Aussie English Podcast where I teach you Aussie English.
The English spoken Down Under in Australia.
So I just got home from having Thai food with some of the girls, well, and a guy from work.
So from the museum where I study. Thai food’s pretty popular in Australia.
And so we went down to a place called Lemon Grass on Lygon Street in Melbourne.
It was really really good. And we had like green curry, red curry, coconut rice, and then curry puffs, I think some spring rolls, and some roti bread as well as chicken skewers.
So it was amazing. Big feed.
So I’m feeling pretty full as it is at the moment, but I thought you know I’ve got the night off.
I should come back and record the next episode of Aussie English.
So, the expression today is “straight off the bat” or “right off the bat”.
So you can use either “straight” or “right” with this expression.
So as usual we’ll go through defining the words within the expression or expressions “straight off the bat” and “right off the bat”.
“Right” can mean a few things. It can mean a direction, you know, the opposite to left.
If you turn right you’re not turning left. So, I turned right at the intersection.
It can also mean correct, as in, “I’m right and you’re wrong”.
But in this case, in the case of the expression right off the bat it means completely, fully, entirely, utterly, thoroughly.
“Straight” also has a few different meanings including extending or moving in a uniform direction.
So in a line, in a straight line, as you would say. So for example, it was a straight road.
So it doesn’t turn to the left doesn’t turn to the right. It just goes in a straight line in front of you.
It’s a straight road. It could also mean properly positioned.
So, to be level, to be upright, to be symmetrical.
So for example, when I was a kid my grandparents would always tell me to sit up straight, as in straighten my spine, sit up correctly, sit upright, sit up straight.
And you could also say your t-shirt or tie or your pants on straight.
So as opposed to them being twisted or crooked you put them on straight.
So they’re nice, neat, upright, symmetrical, straight.
In this case though, it means without hesitation or deliberation.
So without prior planning. So for example, “We went straight off home after school”.
So it’s very very direct. No hesitation, no deliberation. It is what happened immediately.
So it’s similar to right, but not exactly the same, but in the context of this phrase it means the same thing off.
I’m sure a lot of you will know what “off” means. It’s the opposite of “on” for example.
So something can be off if it’s turned off or it can be on if it’s turned on. If it’s an appliance say like a TV or a microwave.
It can also mean moving away from something. So, “He fell off his bed”.
He’s like fallen from his bed and he’s moving away from the bed.
So he’s falling off. I ran off into the distance.
So I’m running and I’m going away from wherever it is that you’re talking about.
And the ball came off the bat, which is sort of how it ties in with this expression.
So the ball comes off the bat it means that the bat has hit the ball and the ball has moved away from it.
It’s gone off, it’s come off, it’s moving off away from the bat.
And a bat, if you haven’t gathered already, is something that you hit a ball with.
So, it tends to be a long piece of wood with a handle.
You know, it’s been shaped, it’s been fashioned into an instrument, an implement that is used to hit balls, and hit balls in games.
So games like cricket, baseball, it could be table tennis.
You probably refer to that as a table tennis bat instead of a tennis racket that’s used in tennis, for example, because it’s made of solid wood.
So, for example, “he hit the ball with his cricket bat”. That’s what a bat is.
So, hopefully you get a sense for the different words in this expression straight off the bat or right off the bat.
And so now as usual, we’ll define what the expression means.
So when we use straight off the bat or right off the bat it means straight away or right away, as in immediately, straight away at the beginning, at the start of something, immediately.
So if something happens right off the bat or something happens straight off the bat it means that it happens immediately, right now, straight away, right away at the beginning.
So I looked up the origin of this expression, and it originates, unsurprisingly, from the sport of baseball where you hit a ball with a bat that’s kind of rounded, and then you have to run to four different bases.
So the expression references, obviously, the ball coming off the bat so the ball is being hit by the bat, and the ball is moving away after a successful strike.
So the ball is moving right off the bat. It’s moving straight off the bat.
And so after a perfect hit this is immediately followed by the batter running to first base.
So in baseball you’ve got four bases. First, second, third, and fourth or home base.
And this immediate response taken by batters after hitting the ball is likely how this expression got its figurative meaning.
So how it came about, of doing something very quickly, immediately, and without delay, without deliberation, without thought.
So batters usually drop that bat straight after it’s hit the ball and they start running.
So they swing at the ball right after hitting the bat goes flying out of their hands quite often and they run to first base.
And so the age of this phrase dates back to about the 1870s or 1880s, and obviously baseball must have been pretty popular back then, and it probably originated in America seeing as baseball isn’t really popular in Australia or Britain.
And let’s go through some examples like usual guys.
So say you’re a teenager who’s at high school.
And you go to high school each day. You get dropped off by your parents or you get the bus.
I used to always get the bus to high school. You study. You hang out with your friends. You then come home.
And every day when you get home your mother or your father who is already at home waiting for you, every day as soon as you walk inside the first thing they say is “How was your day?”.
And so you could say, “Every time I get home straight off the bat they ask me how I am. Every time I get home right off the bat mom is like, “How was your day?”. Every time I get home straight off the bat dad wants to know what I’ve been up to. “How’s your day been mate? What have you been up to? Did you have a good day?”.”
So he or she asks me straight off the bat or I get asked right off the bat “How was my day?”.
Example number two, say that someone’s using Tinder. You know what Tinder is right?
The dating app that people use on their phones to match with other single people in the surrounding area.
So I’m sure you know what Tinder is. It’s used worldwide.
Imagine you’re using Tinder and you match with a lot of people.
And the first person that you go out on a date with turns out to be a perfect match.
So not only were they an actual match on Tinder, but they were a match in real life where they were a great person.
You hit it off. You get along really well.
And you ended up getting into a relationship with this person because the period that you guys are dating goes so well.
You end up boyfriend and girlfriend. You end up as partners.
You could say that straight off the bat you matched with someone who is perfect for you.
So you didn’t have to spend much time searching for “the one”, as in the one perfect match, because straight off the bat, right off the bat you’ve found that person.
So, it happened at the beginning. It happened when you first started using the app.
It happened immediately. It happened straight away. It happened right away.
It happened straight off the bat. It happened right off the bat.
So imagine in example number three here that you’re a vego.
And a vego is a vegetarian someone who only eats vegetables, so plants.
They don’t eat animals. They might eat eggs, I guess, and drink milk, but they don’t eat meat.
So, imagine you’re a vego. You’re going to a lunch with friends and family, and maybe it’s a barbie.
So, it’s a barbecue. There’s a heap of meat. So you’re going to have snags, which are like sausages.
You’re going to have lamb chops. You’re going to have prawns.
Maybe there’s some chicken as well. And sometimes that’s referred to as chook, chicken, chook.
But seeing as you’re a vego, obviously, it’s going to be all there.
All the meat is going to be there, but you’re not going to be interested.
You’re not going to be keen on eating it. So, you don’t want to go anywhere near the meat.
You are not interested at all. You’re a vego.
So you’re addicted to certain veggies such as avos, which is slang for avocado, salad, potato mash, which is like when you mix milk with potatoes and butter and salt and mash it up, tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, whatever it might be, you just love your veggies.
(You) absolutely love them. So, as soon as you arrive you see the food on the table.
You go straight past the meat and just fill your plate up with veggies.
So you get say straight off the bat, right off the bat, you go for the veggies.
You go for the salads, the avos, all the nice broccoli and carrots, all the good stuff, but you avoid the meat.
Straight off the bat you skip the meat and you pile the veggies up on your plate.
Right off the bat you go for just the veggies. Typical vegos, huh?
So, hopefully by now guys you get the terms straight off the bat, right off the bat.
I’m sure that some of you will have picked this up immediately.
So I would say that you understood the expression straight off the bat.
You understood what straight off the bat and right off the bat is.
And as usual, let’s go through some listen and repeat exercises. So listen and repeat after me guys.
This is your chance to practice your Australian pronunciation if that’s what you’re working on.
Otherwise, use the accent that you’re trying to improve, whether it’s American, British English, whatever it is, you know, feel comfortable and just practice the English more so than my accent if that’s what you’re after.
I did it straight off the bat.
You did it straight off the bat.
He did it straight off the bat.
She did it straight off the bat.
We did it straight off the bat.
They did it straight off the bat.
And now that I do this again but with “Right off the bat” and I’m going to try and say it a little more naturally than I would when I’m trying to enunciate very well to help the less advanced listeners.
So, just give it a go. You don’t have to be perfect. Practice speaking a little quick.
It can help. And it’s good practice. So, let’s go now with “Right off the bat”.
I did it right off the bat.
You did it right off the bat.
He did it right off the bat.
She did it right off the bat.
We did it right off the bat.
They did it right off the bat.
One little thing here that I want to point out for you guys as we’ve been doing recently with a little bit of a breakdown of the pronunciation at the end here for the lesson, is that in this phrase in both of these phrases “I did it straight off the bat” or “I did it right off the bat”.
You’re going to notice that the “T” at the end of the word straight actually sounds more like a “D”.
And this actually happens because the “T” there is surrounded by vowels.
So on one side of the word straight you’ve got “-aigh-” before the “T” sound.
And then on the other side you’ve got the “o-” before you say the word “off”.
And it’s the same with the word “right”.
At first you’ve got the “-igh-” sound then the “-t”, and then the “o-” at the start of “off”.
So there’s a vowel sounds on either side of the “T”.
And so when this happens in English, and this happens in all dialects of English. It’s very very common.
It’s not just Australian English. We say the “T” by flapping our tongue.
So instead of really well, really properly, enunciating that “straigh-T” sound, we go straight into the next vowel sound the “o-” at the start of “off”, and we flap the tongue to make the “T” sound.
So instead of saying “straigh-T off”, we say “straigh_Doff”. Did you hear that?
So “straigh-T off”, I could say if I want to use the “T”, “straigh-T off”, but when I speak quickly I say “straigh_Doff”, “straigh_Doff”, “straigh_Doff”, “straigh_Doff”. I did it straigh_Doff the bat.
So it’s a very… it’s kind of like a muted “D” sound.
And now I’ll do that with “right off the bat” as well.
“I did it righ_Doff the bat.” Did you notice it there?
“Righ_Toff” with the “T”, “righ_Doff” with the muted sort of “D” sound.
So the sound is made just from flapping the tongue so you kind of only just touch where you would touch for making that “T” sound in your mouth.
It’s going to take a little bit of practice guys, but you’ll get it if you work on it.
And we’re going to go through that in this episode in the Aussie English Supporter Pack bonus material.
I’ve actually set up a bunch of exercises to cover this specific thing.
The “T” tap or the “T” flap that makes it sound more like a “D”.
And so that’s part of the Aussie English Supporter Pack that I try to do each week.
This week we’re going to be going over all the slang that we did in this expression episode.
We’re going to go over the phrasal verbs to build up, to stack up, to pile up, and to queue up, which means to accumulate.
So we’ve got exercises to go over that.
We’re also going to go over the “T” becoming a “D” sound from flapping.
So that we just sort of talked about a little bit. They’re all have exercises for you to practice that sound.
And then in the grammar I’m going to go over comparing the Simple Past Tense, as in say “happened”, “asked”, “went”, to the Past Perfect Tense as it “had happened”, “had gone”, “had asked”.
So, I’m really really enjoying making the Aussie English Supporter Pack stuff at the moment guys.
We’ve got about 40 members in the Aussie English virtual classroom in the private Facebook group that I use that I’ve created for all of the members who use the Aussie English Supporter Pack once a week to get these episodes with a heap of extra bonus content.
Breaking down the podcast episode of the week so that you can really take your learning to another level.
I’m really trying to design this to help you guys accelerate your English learning as quickly as possible, and just absorb everything.
Really go over everything thoroughly.
So, if you’re interested in giving it a go sign up. It’s a dollar for one month.
You can try it for a month. You can come into the private Facebook group.
We all work together there at the moment on phrasal verbs.
We have daily phrasal verbs that we work on.
And you’ll also get access to all of the previous episodes and their transcripts, their MP3s, their exercises, the exercise MP3s as well, all the bonus material.
So, come and check it out guys.
Let me know what you think, and we can work together to take your English to the next level.
Anyway, that’s long enough for today guys.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode, and I’ll chat to you soon.
All the best.
Welcome to this episode of Aussie English guys.
Today I want to go through 30 or so different words in Australian slang, Australian English, that end with an ‘O’.
He’s a bit of an agro guy.
That guy’s a bit aggressive.
He’s pretty aggro.
Dad’s a bit of an alcoholic.
You could say he’s an alco.
Dad’s an alco.
Can someone call the ambos?
I need to go to the hospital.
What are you doing this arvo?
Not much. I was thinking this arvo I might go to the beach.
I love eating avos.
This one I don’t know where it came from, but it means a fight.
You fight with someone.
My mates are having a bit of a biffo at the moment.
They’re actually having a biffo outside.
Look at them fight.
They’re having a biffo.
Bottle-o. The bottle shop.
What are you doing this arvo?
(Do) you only get some alco from the bottle-o?
Let’s go to the bottle-o.
(I’m) doing a reno on my house at the moment.
Did you want to come over this arvo and help me with the reno?
Yeah, get some alco at the bottle-o as well on your way over.
Let’s do it.
So this is like if you were injured and you got a payment from the government or from work.
Dad injured his back at work and he’s on compo now, and he’s turned into a bit of alco.
I defo want to see you.
I defo want to go to the movies.
And as I am doing it there, it’s often emphasised.
This one is used a bit, but it’s a derogatory term for say someone who is poor, doesn’t have a job, but drinks a lot, is very… like a bogan, and uncouth person.
Watch out for those guys.
They look like deros.
Be careful of him, mate.
He looks like a bit of a dero.
He’s drinking alco in the street this arvo.
She was devo when her boyfriend left.
She was absolutely devo.
Did you want to come over this arvo and watch a doco?
Yeah. David Attenborough’s on.
Let’s watch that doco on the animals.
(I) love docos.
Garbo. Garbage collector. Garbage man.
I hope I don’t end up working as a garbo.
Damn those garbos this morning they came over and woke me up when they were picking up the garbage.
So this is usually when we’re talking about restaurants, cafés, hotels.
I used to work in hospo, but I broke my leg, got some compo, and now I’m devo because I don’t have a job.
(I) turned into a bit of an alco really.
Journo. A journalist.
My sister works as a journalist (journo* woops) for that newspaper.
She loves it.
Then she broke a leg and she’s on some compo.
I always get a mo in November for Movember.
And November is the cause each year in November for raising money for prostate cancer.
And I think it is worldwide.
My mate Marcus works as a muso.
(He) loves it.
He’s not really an alco, but he plays most arvos as a muso on stage.
We’re almost out of fuel.
We’ve got to go get some peto.
Except this is not used as a noun it’s used as an adjective.
So it’s a way of explaining what something is.
We never go to Target to get clothes, mate.
That’s povvo as. That is really povvo.
So it’s like something poor people do.
Check out that sheila over there mate.
She’s definitely preggo.
Rego. Registration for your car.
My rego’s about to run out, mate.
I have got to go renew it this arvo.
Have you got any relos coming over this arvo mate?
Nah, none of my relos are, just some mates.
(I) hate driving at night, ’cause sometimes you hit roos.
(You) see them everywhere in the farmland.
There’s roos all over the shop.
Salvos. Salvation Army.
So this is a charity, a religious charity, in Australia that sells clothes secondhand in stores.
We should go to the Salvos this arvo and get some clothes.
I’ve run out of, I don’t know, pants.
Servo. Service station.
So, petrol station.
This is where you get peto.
Mate, we’re out of peto.
Let’s go to the servo and fill up.
I need to get some ciggies as well mate.
Let’s go to the servo.
Smoko. A smoke break.
So, a break where you have a smoke.
Most people who work in hospo have smokos.
Do you want to go have a smoko?
I need a break, mate.
Let’s go have a ciggy outside.
(Let’s) have a smoko.
Typo. Typing error.
Man I’m always making so many typos in e-mails.
So it could be a vegetarian.
That guy’s a vego.
Or it could be that a meal is vegetarian.
So noun vs adjective.
I don’t want to eat that mate.
That looks vego.
The last one I want to go over is a derogatory term that you guys should definitely not use, I repeat, not use.
Abo is the equivalent of the “N word”.
And again, I hesitate to say that, but “nigga” in Australia.
Abo is an incredibly derogatory word for Aboriginal.
Don’t use it.
You’ll offend pretty much everyone who hears you including white people and coloured people alike, Indigenous Australians alike.
So, it’s important for you to know what that word is because a lot of people do use it, unfortunately, but don’t use it.
Don’t use it.
Anyway, guys I hope you’ve liked this episode.
Let me know if I’ve missed any of these words, and also see if he can use some of them in a sentence below in a comment.
See you in the next one.