M: Well, Li Hua, I struck out again. It looks like my cousin won't have any world series tickets to sell to us after all.
L: 你说什么？Struck out? 这跟买球票有什么关系？
M: I said I struck out again. Struck out means that I failed after trying several times.
L: 噢，我想起来了！棒球赛里就有strike out这个说法。如果一个击球手三次击球不中，他就strike out， 也就是“三振出局”。所以，strike out的意思是，一件事做了几次也不成功。
M: That's right. Looks like you've got a good grasp of the rules of baseball. Why don't you try and use it in a sentence.
L: 嗯，让我想想。对了，我一个朋友申请了几个学校的研究院，可是没有一所学校接受她。 (English) So, she completely struck out.
M: There you go. You know, even if your friend struck out this year, I hope she tries again. I remember the first year I applied to graduate school, I struck out too. But I learned from my mistakes, and eventually found a good school that accepted me.
M: Yeah, I was rather pleased to get into graduate school. Too bad I still strike out with the girls. None of the good ones want to go out with me.
L: 嘿嘿，别担心，Michael, 你要求不要太高，一定会找到你喜欢的女孩的。你总不可能一直在这方面strike out吧!
L: 嘿 Michael, 你到底有没有买到棒球决赛的球票啊？
M: No, to tell you the truth, Li Hua, I don't think I can pull it off. There simply are no tickets for sale.
L: 你说什么？ Pull it off? 你还在想办法，对不对?
M: I said I don't think I can pull it off. To pull something off - Pull. P U L L. Off. O F F, means to succeed at something very difficult, usually unexpectedly.
L: 噢，To pull something off就是出人意料地做成一件很困难的事情。哎，Michael, 你再举个例子好不好？
M: Ok, most of our friends didn't think that Beijing would be allowed to host the 2008 Olympics, but in the end Beijing pulled it off! I was really surprised.
L: 对，很多人以为中国申办奥运不会成功，但是中国试了几次，终于成功， 也就是pulled it off。Michael, 凭你对中国的了解，你不应该感到惊讶才对嘛。
M: Yeah. I guess so. Anyway, as for the tickets, I don't think I can pull this off.
M: The series has already started, the tickets were sold months ago, and the only people selling them on the Internet want at least $600 a ticket for game 7.
L: 电脑上买票还要六百美元一张？这也太过份了吧？哎，Michael, 反正我对棒球也没兴趣，你就不用给我买票了。
M: You know, Li Hua, I spent the whole afternoon calling people and trying to find tickets. I wish you had said something sooner.
L: 对不起，我知道你花了很多时间。可是，我没想到你这么没能耐，试了半天还是struck out!
Michael和李华想买职业棒球赛的球票，可是没有买到。李华学到了两个习惯用语：to strike out和to pull something off。Strike out表示一件事做了几次都没有成功。To pull something off表示出人意料地做成了一件很困难的事情。