无障碍链接

中国时间: 07:00 2016年12月03日星期六

美语训练班第89课

  • 美国之音

A: 欢迎大家来到这期的美语训练班! 我是杨琳!

B: 我是Mike! 杨琳,赶快来告诉大家今天都要学什么?

A: 没问题! 今天我们要聊聊凑份子给同事买礼物,看看如何跟别人摊牌,还要告诉你怎么说地下交易!!

B: Yeah, contributing to an office birthday present for a co-worker is always a pain in the neck, especially if you don't know the person that well. But I mean, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet, you don't want to be a party pooper.

A: That's a catch-22, 进退两难的局面. My dad is always telling me I should set aside some money to build and maintain business ties. Around 10% of your income...

B: True, but all the gourmet food in this town often cause me go over my budget!

A: Haha, that's understandable...because you are Mike! (B:What's that supposed to mean?) 哈哈, 言归正传,现在我们赶快来进入第一个单元,learn a word!

Learn A Word 1652 big-box store

今天我们要学的词是 big-box store, big, b-i-g, big; box, b-o-x, box, store, s-t-o-r-e, store, big-box store. Big-box store 超级商场,一般是连锁店,比如沃尔玛。Compared to big-box stores, Amazon's prices are cheaper because of lower overhead. 跟超级商场相比,亚马逊网站商品的价格更低廉,因为他们的管理费用没那么高。Due to their convenience and cheaper prices, big-box stores are becoming a popular alternative to local stores even for grocery shopping. 由于超级商场的便利和低廉价格,跟当地的小商店相比,消费者越来越愿意选择去超级商场购物,甚至到那里去买菜。好的,今天我们学习的词是 big-box store, big-box store, big-box store....

A: Big-box store, 就是超级市场! 我觉得这个词儿特别形象,在沃尔玛买的东西包装都是超大盒的! 我要是买了,一个人根本吃不完!

B: Well, you can always ask for my help if you can't finish your cookies...I don't mind, that's what friends are for...

A: Why I'm not surprised...Actually there was this one time I nearly took a job as a Walmart Cashier. I only had a student visa at that time, so I had to give it up since I didn't want to get paid under the table.

B: That's a smart move. You don't want to be caught doing something illegal. You just mentioned a really good term, under the table, let's check out today's words and idioms and see what it means!

Words and Idioms #804 Under the Table

美国习惯用语第八百零四讲。

我是杨晨。我是 Douglas Johnson。

我有个朋友不久前从中国来美国旅游,后来想留下来。现在的问题是,他没有工作许可,所以不能合法工作。最好的办法当然是申请工卡。不过,美国其实也有不少非法移民,他们找的都是支付现金的工作,所以不用交税。英语里有个习惯用语,专门指这种交易:

M: Under the table. Under is spelled u-n-d-e-r. Under. Table is spelled t-a-b-l-e. Table. Under the table.

Under the table 在桌子下面进行的交易,也就是不能见人的,而且往往是非法的。下面这个例子里的商人怀疑,他的竞争对手之所以很快就拿到了卖酒的许可,可能是私下里贿赂了管事的人。让我们听听他是怎么说的。

M: "I've been waiting for over a year to get a liquor license for my restaurant, and this guy comes along and gets one in two months. I'm sure he must have paid the official UNDER THE TABLE. How else could he have gotten one so fast?"

他说,[我的餐馆申请酒牌已经一年多了,但是这个人刚来两个月就拿到了,我敢肯定,他一定是私下里给了管事的官员什么好处,也不然,他怎么能那么快就拿到呢?]

虽说见不得人,但是很多生意都是通过 under the table 办成的。有趣的是,中国人说在饭桌上谈事,意思是酒足饭饱后就好说话了,但是西方人却说,under the table 在饭桌下面办事。好的,让我们再来听听上面那段话。

M: "I've been waiting for over a year to get a liquor license for my restaurant, and this guy comes along and gets one in two months. I'm sure he must have paid the official UNDER THE TABLE. How else could he have gotten one so fast?"

在一个高度廉洁、高度透明的体制中,公司为了得到政府的合约,应该通过公平竞争,而不需要私下里打通门路,行贿受贿。They should not have to compete under the table with kickbacks.

虽说 under the table 听上去在生意场上应该是由来已久了,但事实上,这个习惯用语最早出现于二十世纪二十年代,历史并不久远。当时,合法交易都是在桌面上完成的,所以,在桌子下面 Under the table 进行的交易,就是指不光明磊落的。

在下面这个例子中,我们要看看美国一个最可能从 under the table 得到的收入来源。你能猜到吗?让我们一起听听看。

M: I run a restaurant and I get a lot of young people asking me for part-time waitering jobs, and they all want to be paid UNDER THE TABLE, you know, cash. This way they can avoid paying taxes. It's easier for me because I don't have to put them in my books.

这个人说,[我有一家餐馆,很多年轻人都想在我的餐馆里打零工,做服务员,而且都希望我能付给他们现金。这样他们就不用交税了。这样做其实我也愿意,因为我报帐的时候不用把他们包括进去了。]

对呀,在餐馆当服务员赚的小费也是现金,难怪那么多年轻人喜欢在餐馆打工,赚的钱可以全部进入自己的腰包。而且呀,还有很多学生放假专门跑到旅游景点去打工呢!好,让我们再听一下上面的例句。

M: I run a restaurant and I get a lot of young people asking me for part-time waitering jobs, and they all want to be paid UNDER THE TABLE, you know, cash. This way they can avoid paying taxes. It's easier for me because I don't have to put them in my books.

这也让我想起,很多墨西哥人为什么会愿意背井离乡到美国来打工,原因很简单,An American salary, even if below minimum wage and paid under table, would be much higher than what they can earn at home. 在美国赚的工资,即使低于政府规定的最低工资,而且是私下里的现金交易,也要比他们在家乡赚到的多得多。

M: This has been Words and Idioms.

A: I heard a lot of people in America work as waiters as a part time job because you can get paid under the table. Is it true?

B: It depends. Sometimes you can get paid in cash, and tips can be very generous.

A:哈! 我原来特别羡慕西餐厅的女服务生,觉得她们又能在高级餐厅工作,小费还特别多!

B: Yeah, but the downside is that if IRS caught you not paying taxes, you could be in serious trouble.

A: Exactly. 在美国交税可是头等大事,要是你哪次逃了税,不管隔了多久, IRS 都会找到你的....好了,刚才Mike提到了downside, 咱们来听听这个词怎么用!

Learn A Word 1654 downside

今天我们要学的词是 downside, downside is spelled d-o-w-n-s-i-d-e, downside. Downside 是指某件事情不利的方面。One of the downsides of being a celebrity is the loss of privacy. 做名人的代价之一是,你的隐私会受到损伤。The downside of working from home is being forgotten by your boss for work and promotion. 在家上班的缺陷是,很容易被老板遗忘,不光是布置工作的时候,提拔的时候也是一样。The biggest downside of owning a cell phone is that you can never truly get away from it all. 带手机最大的不利之处是,你再也不能彻底摆脱周围的一切了。好的,今天我们学习的词是 downside, downside, downside...

A: Yeah, I love telecommuting. But the downside is that you might be forgotten by your boss...

B: You definitely don't want her to forget you when it comes time for a promotion! Working from home is really efficient though. It saves up on time and gas.

A: 我觉得吧,如果你想远程工作,就要跟老板先都谈好,让他知道你每天都在做什么,both sides need to lay their cards on the table so you know what to expect.

B: Exactly. I also feel like you need to go into the office from time to time. I can't stand working from home all the time, I need to talk to people!

A: Yeah I noticed....(sarcastically) (B: You...) 哈哈,好了,我刚才提到了lay your cards on the table, 再来听听今天的words and idioms, 来学学这个习惯用语的用法!

Words and Idioms 805 to lay or put your cards on the table

美国习惯用语第八百零五讲。我是杨晨。我是 Douglas Johnson。

在上次节目中,我告诉过大家,我的一个朋友因为没有工卡,所以想找那种能支付现金的工作。我告诉他,这么做太悬了,如果被抓住,不仅他自己,而且雇用他的老板也要倒霉。所以他最好坦白地告诉别人,自己没有工作许可,英语里有个习惯用语,专门指开诚布公地说明事实,叫:

M: To lay your cards on the table. Lay is spelled l-a-y. Lay. Cards is spelled c-a-r-d-s. Cards. To lay your cards on the table.

Lay 是动词,放的意思。To lay your cards on the table 就是摊牌,和盘托出的意思。我们也可以用 put 代替 lay, 说 To put your cards on the table. 在下面这个例子里,一个男人在向女朋友求婚前,主动交代了自己的经济状况,让我们听听他是怎么说的。
M: "I don't want to keep any secrets from you. So, I'm going TO LAY MY CARDS ON THE TABLE and tell you that I'm no millionaire, and that if you marry me, you'll have to work for a while─at least until my business starts to grow."

他说,[我不想对你有任何保留,所以我现在全都告诉你。我不是什么百万富翁,你如果嫁给我,可能还得工作一段时间,起码要等到我的生意开始有些起色为止。]

出去工作对大多数美国女性来说可能并不是什么难以接受的事情,除非这个女性出身在一个极其老式,极其保守的家庭。好的,让我们再来听听上面那段话。

M: "I don't want to keep any secrets from you. So, I'm going TO LAY MY CARDS ON THE TABLE and tell you that I'm no millionaire, and that if you marry me, you'll have to work for a while─at least until my business starts to grow."

起码这个男人很老实,婚前就警告未婚妻婚后不会马上过上阔夫人的日子,恐怕还要辛苦一段时间。确实,很多专家都建议,婚前要把各自的财政状况告诉对方,to lay all your cards on the table 其中包括学生贷款、信用卡债务等等,还要看双方在理财方面是否看法一致,否则一个省吃俭用,一个大手大脚,肯定过不到一块儿去。

大家肯定已经想到,to lay one's cards on the table 这个习惯用语是从打牌来的。打牌的时候,牌是不给别人看得,所以说,to lay one's cards on the table or to put one's cards on the table 就是指把原来保密的东西公开出来。这个习惯用语大约有100年的历史。在下面这个例子中,两家公司的老总正在就一项交易讨价还价。让我们一起听听看。

M: "I think we should just LAY OUR CARDS ON THE TABLE and tell each other exactly what we're here for."

"Okay then, our international business is failing and we need cash to keep it going."

其中一个人说,[我觉得我们应该把底牌都亮出来,告诉对方我们到底想到得到些什么。]另外一个人说,[那好,我们公司的国际业务很失败,我们现在需要现金支撑。]

我就不相信上面这两位公司老总会和盘托出。他们肯定会对对方有所保留,这样才能讨价还价嘛!让我们再听一下上面的例句。

M: "I think we should just LAY OUR CARDS ON THE TABLE and tell each other exactly what we're here for."

"Okay then, our international business is failing and we need cash to keep it going."

最近,我们附近一家公司的劳资双方围绕工资问题陷入了纠纷。Both sides need to put their cards on the table for any progress to be made. 要想在谈判上取得进展,纠纷双方必须坦诚相见。与此同时,我认识的一个朋友就在那家公司上班。他觉得形势不好,所以马上就找到了一份新工作。He laid his cards on the table and told his boss about the job offer. 他坦率地把准备换工作的消息告诉了自己的老板。

好的,这次[美国习惯用语]就到此结束。我是杨晨,我是 Douglas Johnson。这次节目的制作人是胡小玲。谢谢各位的收听。

M: Until next time.

下次节目再见。

M: This has been Words and Idioms.

A: Before a couple decide to get married, they need to lay their cards on the table and talk about things such as financial habits, living styles and so on.

B: Exactly. Being candid can prevent a lot of future unhappiness. Speaking of which, you owe me ten bucks.

A: What are you talking about?

B: I got a gift for me on your behalf since you didn't give me a Christmas present this year. So you owe me ten bucks for the gift.

A: 好无语...不过有时候,同事凑份子确实是个让人头疼的事儿。 在今天的Business Etiquette里,Amanda就跟老同事Sarah抱怨起新办公室里的一些事儿,咱们一起来听听吧!

Sarah 转到新部门工作不久,在去吃午饭的路上遇到原来的同事 Amanda.

S: Hi Amanda, how are you? I've missed working with you and the whole gang since my transfer last week.

A: We've missed you too. The office just isn't the same without you. How is your new job?

S: It's great. I really get to focus on what I like to do and everyone has been very nice and welcoming. However, I'm having a small problem with my new colleagues.

A: What happened?

Sarah告诉Amanda她很想念原来的同事,I missed working with you and the gang. 大家都知道,Gang 有团伙的意思,在这里指常聚在一起的一群人。 Amanda 也说,The office just isn't the same without you. Sarah走了,办公室好像就不一样了。虽然Sarah很喜欢她新的工作, 但是在跟新同事相处时却遇到了一些小麻烦,我们继续听。

S: Well, three people are celebrating their birthdays this month and the policy here is for everyone to contribute ten dollars to a card and cake for each person.

A: Wow, so you'll be out thirty dollars on your first week at work!

S: I know. It is a lot of money and I haven't gotten to know any of the people celebrating their birthdays well enough yet. At our old department, it was only three dollars for each birthday and there were only ten of us.

原来,这个月有三个新同事过生日,Sarah 不得不跟着一起凑份子,买卡片和蛋糕为同事庆祝。They want her to contribute to the card and cake. Contribute is spelled c-o-n-t-r-i-b-u-t-e, contribute 是贡献的意思。这样一来,She will be out thirty dollars. 一下要出三十块。Sarah 跟这些同事还不熟,所以觉得有点亏。Amanda 安慰她说,

A: Well, every department is different. You wouldn't want your new co-workers to think you're a Grinch, right?

S: What is that? It doesn't sound like a good thing to be.

A: A Grinch is a person who spoils the mood at a happy occasion by being selfish or unenthusiastic. You know -- a party pooper.

S: I definitely don't want to be that! But, I still think it's unreasonable for them to ask me for such a big sum of money when we don't know each other very well. What should I do?

Amanda 警告Sarah,如果她不出份子钱的话,同事会认为她是 Grinch, Grinch is spelled g-r-i-n-c-h, grinch 专门用来形容自私,而且没有情趣的人。Sarah当然不想让新同事觉得她是个败兴的人,a party pooper, 可她还是很不甘心,觉得新同事的要求不合理 unreasonable. reasonable 是有道理的,前面加上 un, unreasonable 就变成了没有道理的。这笔份子钱,Sarah最后会出吗?我们下次继续听。

A: Sarah 跟Amanda抱怨,说刚到新办公室,同事就要她出30块钱来给其它同事庆祝生日。Sarah觉得she will be out 30 bucks, 一下出30块钱,有点多,可是又不想人家觉得她是 grinch, 自私的人,或者 party pooper, 败兴的人。

B: It's a catch-22. On the one hand, you don't want to go over the budget; on the other hand, no one wants to have the reputation of being a grinch.

A: Especially if you are in a new team! First impressions are extremely important.

B: Let's see if Amanda can offer Sarah some good advice!

Sarah 向原来的同事 Amanda诉苦,说刚换了新工作,就赶上三个人过生日,都要凑份子,感觉心理很不平衡。Amanda 劝她说,

A: If I were you, I would just bite the bullet and hand over the money. First impressions are important and it's not worth getting a reputation for being a Scrooge. Think about it this way: when your birthday comes around, you'll have at least one card and cake to look forward to.

S: A Scrooge is someone who is stingy with his money even though he has plenty, right? I wouldn't want my colleagues to think I am refusing to contribute to the pool even though I can, but this would put me way over my weekly budget.

Amanda 建议Sarah硬着头皮凑份子, Bite the bullet 意思是硬着头皮接受自己不愿意做的事情。她说,first impressions are important, 第一印象很重要,不能为了这点钱给别人留下“守财奴”的印象。 It's not worth getting a reputation for being a Scrooge. Scrooge is spelled s-c-r-o-o-g-e, scrooge 意思是讨厌的守财奴。Sarah 说自己不是不肯出钱,contribute to the pool, 这里的pool, p-o-o-l, pool 指的是大家凑的钱,可如果出钱,一星期的预算就会超出很多。

A: What about a compromise? Maybe you could sit down privately with the person in charge of collecting the money and explain that coming from a smaller department you've never had to deal with so many birthdays at once. Offer to give her five dollars for each birthday instead, and promise that you will make your famous brownies for the celebration.

S: That sounds like a good plan. I hope they understand where I'm coming from and don't hold it against me.

Amanda 建议Sarah去找负责收钱的同事商量,try to make a compromise. 看能不能找到一个居中的妥协方案,把份子钱从十块减少到五块,但同时保证烤自己拿手的蛋糕,来庆祝同事的生日。Sarah觉得这个办法不错,希望同事能 understand where I'm coming from. 意思是能明白和理解我的本意,don't hold it against me 不要记恨我。

A: I'm sure they will understand. Lots of people have been in the same position before. And, maybe once you get to know them better, ten dollars won't seem like such a big deal anymore.

S: Thanks so much for your advice, I feel a lot better about the situation.

A: You're welcome. Let's make sure we keep in touch, Sarah!

S: Sure, I'll talk to you again soon and let you know how it goes. Enjoy your lunch!

Amanda 叫Sarah放心,一定有很多人遇到过这种情形,lots of people have been in the same position before. 她还说,等Sarah和同事们熟了以后,凑十块钱的份子钱可能也就没什么大不了的了。

A: Yeah! It would be great if she can find a compromise! Speaking of which, since I compromise everyday by working with you, I should get some compensation....

B: Working with me everyday IS your compensation!

A:哈哈, 好了同学们,这次节目时间就到这里了。
XS
SM
MD
LG