LL: Wow, it's nice to relax and let off some steam after a long week at work.
LH: 就是啊，放松一下，感觉真好！Larry，你说要let off steam？Steam是蒸气，你还会放气呀？
LL: No, not literally. To let off steam can mean to relax or it can mean to express pent-up feelings, usually of anger.
LH: 原来如此。To let off steam就是放松，也可以是发泄积压在心里的感情，通常是火气。所以你是说一个星期紧张地学习和工作后放松一下，感觉很好。Larry，这个常用语跟steam， 蒸气有什么关系呢？
LL: It's a metaphor. One has to ease the pressure in a steam engine by releasing - or letting off - steam. Otherwise the engine might overheat and explode.
LH: 原来是从蒸汽机的原理来的。没错，蒸汽机如果不定时释放一下的蒸气，那就可能会爆炸。 Larry，如果你一直不放松的话，你该不会爆炸吧？
LL: No, I'm not going to explode. However, letting off steam is important to a person's mental health.
LL: A lot of people exercise to let off steam. Other people prefer quiet activities like reading.
LL: I like to do exactly what we're doing now. I let off steam by relaxing and having a nice meal with a friend.
LL: Sometimes it helps to talk to someone. It's usually better to let off some steam before dealing with the issue directly.
LL: Oops! I forgot that I have to work on Sunday. That just ruins my whole weekend.
LH: Oops? 我常听到人们这么说，Larry，这是什么意思啊？
LL: People usually say oops to acknowledge that they have made a mistake or have had a minor accident. I mistakenly thought I had the whole weekend off, when I actually have to work on Sunday. Oops.
LL: That's true. Oops! I just dropped my fork on the floor.
LL: That's okay. There's an extra one on the next table. I'll just take that one.
LH: 拿那个桌上的叉子也行，反正哪儿没人坐。Oh no, 这回轮到我要说oops了。我想起来了，今天晚上我该给我妈妈打电话了。
LL: You still have time. We should be finished here soon and you can go right home to call your mom.
LH: Oops! 吃完饭赶回家也没用，我忘了买电话卡了。没电话卡，我怎么打电话呢？
LL: I have a calling card. You can use it to call your mom. I don't mind at all.
今天李华学到两个常用语。第一个是let off steam，是指发泄怒气或其他情绪。另一个常用语是oops，这是一种语气词，通常是在当一个人犯了小错误时会说的。