• Topic Talk | 3 strategies for overcoming a plateau in your language journey

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack provide three good strategies for overcoming a plateau in your language learning journey.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:56

    Jack

    Welcome to the Ages English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are doing a topic talk episode and social the topic for today is I've I've pulled up three strategies for overcoming.

    00:01:13

    Jack

    A plateau in language learning and a plateau just means that you reached a certain level and then you're not improving anymore. You're kind of stuck and you're you're kind of flatlined.

    00:01:25

    Jack

    Know.

    00:01:26

    Jack

    And yeah, so I'll, I'll.

    00:01:27

    Xochitl

    I'm.

    00:01:29

    Jack

    I'll tell you the strategies.

    00:01:30

    Jack

    And then you just, you know, tell me what you think about them and and and share your your your your view on on these.

    00:01:38

    Jack

    So the first one is.

    00:01:40

    Jack

    Diversify your learning methods, which means changing the way you engage with the language can re energize your learning process. So incorporate different activities that target various skills, such as reading, listening, writing and speaking.

    00:02:00

    Jack

    You can for reading, you can choose a variety of materials such as books, articles and blogs to expand your vocabulary. You can listen to podcasts. You can follow YouTube channels and again that's right in our that's what we're doing here.

    00:02:18

    Jack

    UM to listen to different accents and slang, and we do a lot of slang episodes. So the 80s, the English podcast is really a great way to improve your listening by writing, journaling, writing essays, or replying on online form.

    00:02:35

    Jack

    Things. And by joining language exchange programs, finding a conversation partner or participating in speaking clubs. Or you could even join the world English Google meets class, which is something that I started with.

    00:02:56

    Jack

    Another another teacher here in Korea and students can for $10 a month, they can join and just have a one hour conversation. Actually, if you become a VIP, it sometimes students will talk for two or three hours a night.

    00:03:13

    Jack

    Every night. Every day. Yeah. So. And then there are multiple classes and what we have multiple teachers teaching different lessons as well. So you know. So there's a lot of things you can do. What what do you, how do you feel about this like?

    00:03:13

    발표자

    Yes.

    00:03:28

    Jack

    Diversifying learning methods.

    00:03:31

    Xochitl

    I think that's really good. I I actually was one of the first things I would have suggested right off the bat, especially with reading. It's really great to read varied content like you can try.

    00:03:44

    Xochitl

    Thing old English literature and you can try reading science articles and you can try reading the horoscope in a magazine or a celebrity news thing or and and you can try reading a fashion article just because you're gonna acquire a lot more different, diverse vocabulary that you don't see in every day and.

    00:03:53

    Jack

    Right.

    00:04:04

    Xochitl

    That really helps be able to get you from just a proficient level to really a distinguished native speaker level.

    00:04:14

    Jack

    I'm gonna throw. I'm gonna throw a plug for something I'm not related to it at all. I have no connection to it.

    00:04:21

    Xochitl

    Yeah, do it.

    00:04:21

    발표자

    But.

    00:04:22

    Jack

    It's called Breaking News English and what they do is they take an article and they kind of scale it down so that it's more understandable for second language learners.

    00:04:35

    Jack

    And they put a new article up every single day, and you can read the article and answer some comprehension questions, some true or false questions, vocabulary matching. They've got lots of little exercises there, and I think that's just such a great.

    00:04:51

    Jack

    Website I I've used it many times for my classes and I I love breaking news English. So if you're in, if you're looking for somebody to read and the articles are all different, you know it's a science article. It's a sports article. It's a news article. It's all just a bunch of different things. And like you said.

    00:05:10

    Jack

    If you read a variety of of material, you're gonna pick up a variety of vocabulary. If you stay in one specific area like sports only, you're gonna get a lot of sports lingo, but you may.

    00:05:24

    Jack

    Get exposed to science or yeah.

    00:05:24

    Xochitl

    You'll be lacking in several social studies, sociology and all history, yeah.

    00:05:30

    발표자

    Right.

    00:05:33

    Jack

    Exactly, exactly. #2, the second one is set specific, achievable goals. Breaking down your learning into smaller manageable goals can help you stay motivated and measure progress.

    00:05:48

    발표자

    Yes.

    00:05:49

    Jack

    How do you feel about that one?

    00:05:51

    Xochitl

    I think that was good. I mean for example, you could say your goal is to improve your pronunciation, but that's extremely vague. But for example, let's say that you struggle with pronouncing the R or R.

    00:06:06

    Xochitl

    R sounds so which is really common. Then you could practice a few words that are L&R heavier that alternate between L&R within the same word.

    00:06:18

    Xochitl

    And record yourself every day and you'll see your progress from the beginning of the month to the end of the month. And that will really inspire you to keep going and keep practicing and improving.

    00:06:30

    Jack

    That's right. That's right. I think students tend to like, try to bite off more than they can chew. You know, you you you set your goals as like I wanna. I wanna sound like a native speaker. What does that mean exactly? You wanna sound like a native speaker? Well, I mean, it's it's kind of like a a a child saying, you know, I want to be Michael Jordan.

    00:06:35

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:06:44

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:06:50

    Jack

    Well, there's a lot of steps that you have to take to get to that high. The highest level of of basketball or whatever sport you.

    00:06:50

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:06:57

    Jack

    Might be playing.

    00:06:59

    Jack

    You you have to, you know, set you small goals. Yeah. Yeah. Well, right.

    00:07:01

    Xochitl

    Pick an accent.

    00:07:05

    Xochitl

    Pick an accent for 1A neutral English or some kind. The easiest one that though, or the one that you like, or the one that you resonate the most with and there's just so many small goals from there. Just start with short words or the one you know, ones that you have a little bit of a hard time.

    00:07:22

    Xochitl

    Announcing and then build up from there and gain your confidence, yeah.

    00:07:26

    Jack

    Absolutely.

    00:07:28

    Jack

    And #3 is immerse yourself in language and immersion is one of the most effective ways to push through a plateau. And what does immersion mean?

    00:07:39

    Xochitl

    Immersion means when you are fully surrounded by a language, in a lot of aspects. So when I was living in Korea, I was immersed in Korean because it's only foreign teacher. So all day, every day, all that I would hear were people speaking Korean around me. And I would say this is this. And patients were the biggest keys to my breakthrough and speaking Korean.

    00:08:00

    Xochitl

    Because at first when I got there and I would, I would hear a word and I'd.

    00:08:05

    Xochitl

    I wouldn't know where a word began in another one and another began.

    00:08:08

    Jack

    Yes, that's a hard thing. You create a yeah, yes.

    00:08:11

    Xochitl

    I was like, what's going on? Because so where is there so many it might be?

    00:08:16

    Xochitl

    A sentence with only two or two words or three words, or even one word. But it has many syllables, so I was very confused. I was very confused and then with I said I said I'll never learn Korean. I'm I've gone crazy on. I don't know what I'm doing here with patients. Within a couple of weeks, I could. I could begin to distinguish where.

    00:08:36

    Xochitl

    Words ended and and began.

    00:08:39

    Xochitl

    And every month it just got better and better. And then I would feel like I hit a plateau of understanding, or sometimes I would even regress a little bit and then I would improve. And so it it's another thing is that learning of any type and especially language learning, it's not necessarily a linear improvement, is not going to be linear. You might do really well for a while, you might regress.

    00:08:59

    Xochitl

    After a little bit and come back down. But overall the trend is going to be that you're improving. So you just have.

    00:09:04

    Jack

    Yes.

    00:09:05

    Xochitl

    To have faith, yes.

    00:09:06

    Jack

    Absolutely. It's a, it's a. It's a long process and it's very detailed and or tedious we say detailed.

    00:09:16

    Jack

    And it takes a long time to to to grow your language skills. And yeah, I mean, like, So what social did what I did travel if possible. So that's one of the ways you can do just throw yourself right into the fire. You know, so that you have to use.

    00:09:29

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:09:35

    Xochitl

    Thanks.

    00:09:37

    Jack

    The target language you have to use English to survive. You know survival English, you know, right? But that's expensive and that's not available to everybody that that's not available. But you can do a version of that online like that. Google meets class that I was talking about.

    00:09:42

    Xochitl

    Sometimes people.

    00:09:53

    Jack

    On is a kind of a version of that where we have a number no native language rule. You have to speak English and so no matter what your skill level is, you've got to find a way to communicate some ideas and you just have to figure it out and you're there's no, there's no guide or anything necessarily.

    00:10:07

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:10:13

    Jack

    You just, you know, you can ask questions, people will help you. But it's a great way to grow because it's a stress. It's putting stress on your.

    00:10:22

    Jack

    On on, on you and forcing you to perform.

    00:10:25

    Jack

    Form.

    00:10:26

    Jack

    And.

    00:10:27

    Xochitl

    In a real.

    00:10:27

    Xochitl

    World environment that you don't. Only you wouldn't have access to otherwise. It's really like, OK, this is crunch time kind of behavior which I think really helps. And yeah, I would say that. So that's a great way. Jack. Sorry. Did I?

    00:10:41

    Xochitl

    Cut you off. Go ahead. I.

    00:10:42

    Jack

    No, no, that's it. I'm. I'm good. Yeah.

    00:10:45

    Xochitl

    I was going to say that's really good.

    00:10:46

    Xochitl

    And another way I know a lot of people learn another language is through playing video games with people that speak that language. As native speakers, you'll pick up things that they're saying, and you'll begin to understand things through that context.

    00:11:01

    Xochitl

    Another way to immerse yourself is by joining like a Facebook group for that. For a hobby that you like in English, or watching a YouTube channel in English, or listening to our podcast or watching Netflix or English movies.

    00:11:21

    Xochitl

    I have a friend who moved from Brazil to the US when he was around 7 and he said the biggest way he learned English was through movies and I think that that was a really big help when I was trying to learn Korean is just a lot of listening.

    00:11:35

    Xochitl

    This and and sometimes I would watch something with subtitles and I would rewatch it without the subtitles, yeah.

    00:11:42

    Jack

    Yeah, that's that's the incremental element to it, right? Start with the easiest and then move a little bit more challenging, a little bit more challenging. That's the way you.

    00:11:50

    Jack

    Grow so yeah.

    00:11:54

    Jack

    Right on.

    00:11:55

    Xochitl

    All right, listeners, if you like these tips or if you're curious or have any English learning language tips of your own to overcome a plateau, make sure to leave a comment down below at A-Z englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at AZ englishpodcast@gmail.com and join the WeChat and also groups to join the conversation.

    00:12:12

    Xochitl

    And if you have $1.99 to spare, make sure you support Jack and I and our exclusive podcast content. It really helps us create more content for you guys and we really, really appreciate all the.

    00:12:22

    Xochitl

    Support so far.

    00:12:23

    Xochitl

    Thank you again and we'll see you guys next.

    00:12:24

    Xochitl

    Time. Bye bye bye bye.

    00:12:25

    발표자

    Go back.


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    E28 - 13m - May 22, 2024
  • Idiom Academy | Expressions which use the word "finger"

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack give you three expressions which use the word "finger."

    Butterfingers:

    Definition: This term is used to describe someone who is clumsy, especially with their hands, often dropping things or failing to catch something.

    Example Usage: "He missed the easy catch during the game because he has butterfingers."


    Finger Food:

    Definition: This refers to small pieces of food that are meant to be eaten with the fingers, without the need for utensils.

    Example Usage: "At the party, they served a variety of finger foods like sliders, chicken wings, and mini quiches."


    Finger a Criminal:

    Definition: This slang term means to identify or inform on a criminal, often to the police or authorities. It involves pointing out or naming someone as the perpetrator of a crime.

    Example Usage: "The witness agreed to finger the criminal in exchange for a reduced sentence."


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    E9 - 8m - May 21, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVECulture Corner | Best Friends

    In this exclusive episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about the meanings and attitudes towards best friends in different cultures.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:55

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are in the culture corner and we're talking about best friends and what that means in our different cultures. And I I obviously you're bicultural so you understand.

    00:01:15

    Jack

    American culture and Mexican culture equally.

    00:01:19

    Jack

    I understand American culture and I'm I'm familiar with Korean culture, So what would you? How would you like? I don't know where we should start with this. I'm thinking like, let's start in the USA. Like what is a best friend in America and what does that mean and what?

    00:01:25

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:01:37

    Jack

    Are the responsibilities.

    00:01:38

    Xochitl

    I think being a best friend in America just starts the person that you're closest to, and you talk to about all.

    00:01:44

    Xochitl

    Kinds of big life events, and like at if you have a wedding, they're gonna be like your best man or your bridesmaid, and they might be the godfather or mother to your child.

    00:01:57

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:02:00

    Xochitl

    There's someone. You're super you. You trust them with, like everything. And you feel like you can come to them with anything. And you guys like really have a deep, deep understanding of each other and.

    00:02:16

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's a really special kind of friendship.

    00:02:20

    Jack

    I agree it's a deep bond and they're they're the person. It's it's oddly.

    00:02:27

    Jack

    Closer than family in some ways, because you you tell things to your best friend that you wouldn't even dream about telling to your family.

    00:02:29

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:02:36

    Jack

    Like your your family. Just maybe like a brother. If you have a sometimes a brother can be a best friend or a sister can be a best friend and so they can share deep, dark secrets with with each other.

    00:02:43

    Xochitl

    Yeah, that's true.

    00:02:48

    Jack

    UM and know that you have the confidence of your of your uh.

    00:02:53

    Jack

    Of your of your best friend, meaning confidence, meaning they will not tell anyone else, like they'll keep your secrets to the they'll they'll bring them to the grave. We say in English, and it's a. It's an interesting dynamic in in other cultures because I think.

    00:03:03

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:03:14

    Jack

    It takes on different responsibilities.

    00:03:16

    Jack

    Is I I think it. I think the the ones we described apply to Korea. But I think in Korea it it goes on almost like a deeper level where even like money and stuff like that is involved, you know? So I've heard of like, you know, a friend sending a message to.

    00:03:36

    Jack

    Who? A best friend. Hey, I'm. I'm, I'm traveling. I ran out of money. Can you wire some money into my bank account and without hesitation, they will do that, you know? And I feel like there there are certain lines in like American culture, like money and stuff like that. We try not to mix.

    00:03:49

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:03:56

    Jack

    Don't mix friendship and money.

    00:03:59

    Xochitl

    We have a lot of sayings about that and we don't like to ask for money.

    00:04:01

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:04:06

    Xochitl

    Don't like to ask people for money or?

    00:04:06

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:04:09

    Xochitl

    We, we we even.

    00:04:11

    Xochitl

    Don't like asking other people for favors that much? We'd rather pay a moving company than than make everyone help us move. Or, you know, it's kind of like that, I think.

    00:04:14

    Jack

    Right, right.

    00:04:22

    Jack

    Yeah. We don't like to. Yeah, we don't. We we don't like to disrupt our our friends lives or or, you know kind of.

    00:04:24

    Xochitl

    Burden.

    00:04:33

    Xochitl

    Burden them.

    00:04:33

    Jack

    I'm trying to think. What's that? Yeah. Burden. Thank you. That's the what I was looking for. We hate burdening people with with our problems. And I think that's that. Goes to like last week's topic of individualism. It's like we're individualistic in America. And so our problems are our problems. So even even a best friend.

    00:04:35

    Xochitl

    Burden.

    00:04:45

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:04:48

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:04:53

    Jack

    They wouldn't necessarily burden them with, like you said, moving or or certain. I think sometimes it's it's OK, sometimes we will help our friend move, you know, that's that's a.

    00:05:06

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I think that's actually a pretty normal thing to do.

    00:05:07

    Jack

    OK.

    00:05:09

    Xochitl

    But.

    00:05:09

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:05:11

    Jack

    We don't like it.

    00:05:12

    Xochitl

    We've been at culture, but we've just feel embarrassed to, like, ask people for stuff.

    00:05:17

    Jack

    We we feel guilty and and I and I think in in Korea there would be no guilt at all. It's like it's a best friend like I can.

    00:05:18

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:05:24

    Xochitl

    It's like you do it for me and I would do the same for.

    00:05:26

    Xochitl

    You kind of thing, yeah.

    00:05:27

    Jack

    Yes, exactly, exactly there. There's no shame or or embarrassment in asking your best friend for really just about anything. And that has its own problems too. Their, you know, relationships have been affected in Korea. I know because I've seen documentaries on it where a best friend.

    00:05:46

    Jack

    Asks.

    00:05:48

    Jack

    And the other best friend to cosign on a loan.

    00:05:53

    Jack

    And then the loan defaults and then the best friend has to pay back all the money for the other friend and loses their house or loses their car, their family. You know, it could be devastating because that societal pressure of, like, doing something, you know, if your best friend asks you a favor.

    00:06:13

    Jack

    You must say yes, even if it's something dangerous, like cosigning on a loan.

    00:06:20

    Jack

    You know.

    00:06:20

    Xochitl

    Right. No, it's like there's less boundaries. Probably the US culture has, like, a lot of boundaries and a lot of like, things that are.

    00:06:29

    Xochitl

    Considered you would never dream of.

    00:06:33

    Xochitl

    There are people who will, but in general it's like we would never dream of the of putting someone in that situation.

    00:06:40

    Jack

    Right.

    00:06:41

    Xochitl

    Right. And if someone put you in that situation, you would be, like, appalled to be asked to do such things. Well, I.

    00:06:47

    Xochitl

    Think.

    00:06:47

    Jack

    Yeah, but we would never really make ourselves vulnerable in that way because societally, it's OK to say no to a best friend with certain things are certain things are. And here's another idiom beyond the pale.

    00:06:57

    Xochitl

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:07:03

    Jack

    Like they're too far, you know, it's.

    00:07:04

    Xochitl

    Yes, like asking someone to cosign on a home loan, asking a best friend to cosign on a home loan is beyond.

    00:07:10

    Xochitl

    Fail. All right.

    00:07:11

    Jack

    It's. Yeah, it's, it's inappropriate and it's inappropriate.

    00:07:14

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's just no especially. Yeah, no, it would be very inappropriate. Yeah. And Mexican culture, I frankly.

    00:07:25

    Xochitl

    Don't really know. It's like weird when when you grew up in 2 cultures cause it's like you almost don't know.

    00:07:35

    Xochitl

    What's unique about that? You know what I mean? What's unique about that culture? It's cause it's so not. It's so normal to you.

    00:07:39

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:07:44

    발표자

    Well, also at at.

    00:07:45

    Jack

    The age when you were making best friends, you were living in America for most of that time, right? Yeah.

    00:07:50

    Xochitl

    I think so. Yeah, I think so. Yeah. So I had less Mexican best friends too. I and I would say, well, though my my best friend of all time was Mexican American, just like me.

    00:08:03

    Jack

    OK, OK.

    00:08:05

    Xochitl

    And I would say we, we had a really close relationship and we definitely asked each other a lot of favors like.

    00:08:13

    Xochitl

    UM.

    00:08:15

    Xochitl

    Just stuff. I mean, when we when we were both really broke, she shared her food stamps with me. For example. Yeah. It's a heartwarming story to to Walmart and took toilet paper from the toilet stalls.

    00:08:20

    Jack

    OK, OK.

    00:08:23

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:08:29

    Jack

    That's desperate, yeah.

    00:08:30

    Xochitl

    And yes, we were broke. And then her parents bought us some groceries, which is really nice.

    00:08:35

    Xochitl

    And we were struggling for real.

    00:08:39

    Jack

    Yes.

    00:08:40

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it it it. It can be a really nice thing. And and I've I've had multiple best friends, you know, offer me like their.

    00:08:49

    Xochitl

    Home or a place to crash? Uh, when I needed it like UM.

    00:08:54

    Xochitl

    I when the pandemic struck, you know, a lot of people. When I my college just shut down and it it was hard to get from Iowa to Kentucky.

    00:09:03

    Xochitl

    And I had a lot of friends that helped me out along the way that are that I would consider best friends.

    00:09:08

    Xochitl

    So I think that's a that's a really normal thing as well and Mexican culture it's like.

    00:09:14

    Xochitl

    I almost sometimes feel.

    00:09:18

    Xochitl

    That.

    00:09:20

    Xochitl

    Relationships are more superficial here, like in some way I don't know how to explain it. I don't know how to explain.

    00:09:26

    Jack

    Oh, I would have thought the opposite. I would have thought it was more like Korea.

    00:09:30

    Jack

    Where they're kind of like.

    00:09:30

    Xochitl

    It is it is, it is. It is more like Korea. Yet yet somehow I almost find that.

    00:09:37

    Xochitl

    I I don't want to misspeak, but in some ways it's almost.

    00:09:42

    Xochitl

    In the US, when you're best friends with someone, it's like.

    00:09:47

    Xochitl

    You're best friends with someone, even if you have nothing to offer each other in a way.

    00:09:52

    Jack

    Mm-hmm. Ohh, so it's maybe more transactional, you might say.

    00:09:53

    Xochitl

    You know what I mean?

    00:09:57

    Xochitl

    Maybe I I don't know about Korean culture or Mexican.

    00:10:01

    Xochitl

    I think you could still be friends with some even if you have nothing to offer each other but.

    00:10:06

    Xochitl

    I think something.

    00:10:06

    Xochitl

    Unique about US culture, how how all phrases is I think something unique about US culture is that people from completely, completely different socioeconomic statuses, completely different ages, completely different religions, completely different everything, educational backgrounds, whatever.

    00:10:22

    Xochitl

    Positions in life, jobs, careers can be best.

    00:10:25

    Xochitl

    French and I think.

    00:10:26

    Jack

    Yes, that's true.

    00:10:29

    Xochitl

    That's not true in Korea, and I think that's not true in Mexico either.

    00:10:35

    Jack

    I see what you mean. OK, so yeah, so there, there's there's different, maybe hierarchies or something of like, yeah.

    00:10:37

    Xochitl

    You're right.

    00:10:43

    Xochitl

    Yeah, you probably have like a in Korea and in Mexico, I think personally.

    00:10:48

    Xochitl

    You.

    00:10:50

    Xochitl

    I'm sure that relationship is just as real as it is in the US, and it's very close, but.

    00:10:55

    Xochitl

    Uh, there's like you probably come from so similar socioeconomic backgrounds, you probably went to similar colleges or got education to a similar degree. You're probably kind of on similar life paths and.

    00:11:12

    Xochitl

    A lot of those similarities tend to exist between best friends in in Mexico and and Korea and stuff. And I don't think that's really true.

    00:11:20

    Xochitl

    For the US.

    00:11:21

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:11:22

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:11:23

    Jack

    As you get older like me, I'm 47 and so my my best friend. You know, we maybe we e-mail a couple times a year we we don't really. Yeah I know.

    00:11:35

    Xochitl

    So sad though, sorry, have fun with it.

    00:11:38

    Jack

    No, no, it's it's weird, right? I mean, I mean, it's not weird, but it's it's like, but as soon as I see him, it's back where it's like as if we never missed a beat, you know, like.

    00:11:48

    발표자

    It.

    00:11:49

    Jack

    It it goes right back to to where we were.

    00:11:53

    Jack

    The last time we saw each other.

    00:11:55

    Xochitl

    But I think there's like a phase of life that's like that. And then when you get like a lot older, you have a lot more time for your friends. Again, because my dad, like, when he was your age when he was 47, I would say he, we, like rarely saw his best friends or whatever. But now he he message he texts him all the time. He probably texts him more often than I text my friends.

    00:12:14

    Jack

    Oh, OK.

    00:12:15

    Xochitl

    I think it just you know it it just.

    00:12:17

    Xochitl

    Those closer to retirement age and less responsibilities at work and less responsibilities with your family cause your kids are grown up and out of the house and have their own lives and a lot of those things just lead to you having a little more time for your friends again. And I think that, yeah. So I think that.

    00:12:32

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah, my best friend has two sons. They're both in in elementary and middle school. They're, you know, they're right in the middle of the chaos. And I just got out of it recently.

    00:12:39

    Xochitl

    Oh boy, yeah.

    00:12:47

    Jack

    And had some more time. So I think I think we just we just got lost in our lives. You know during that that period and yeah, I mean I I I this this was you know it's just in my generation as well.

    00:12:47

    발표자

    Say.

    00:13:04

    Jack

    We we didn't grow when I when we were best friends, when we were spending all of our time together. And I've I have two best friends we.

    00:13:14

    Jack

    We, you know, we didn't have cell phones and smartphones and all the technology and e-mail and stuff like that. We had e-mail. But you know, nobody used it. We you know, we we just we just got we made appointments and got together and I think.

    00:13:30

    Jack

    When we were living apart, that's when all this new technology kind of came into.

    00:13:35

    Jack

    The into the culture into the society and I just feel like maybe we that wasn't the foundation of our relationship. Like if we had grown up with Snapchat and Instagram and and all these apps, we would still be in, you know, contact with each other.

    00:13:46

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:13:56

    Jack

    But I don't think my best friend is even on Facebook.

    00:14:00

    Jack

    You know, he doesn't even have a Facebook account, so you know it. Yeah, it's just he's he's just not interested in social media and at all. And so we we we don't that that's not a part of our our relationship at all. And so yeah that's I think that's another aspect of it.

    00:14:04

    Xochitl

    So.

    00:14:20

    Xochitl

    Yeah, you also live in different countries, right? If I'm not.

    00:14:23

    Jack

    Yep, Yep, Yep. He's an American.

    00:14:24

    Xochitl

    That I think that and there's a huge time difference in Korea and America. So I think that really adds A adds a.

    00:14:31

    Xochitl

    There. Yeah. So I do think best friendship change is not just culturally, but across age and time and family situations and careers and. Yeah, but I'm really interested to hear from our listeners what they feel being a best friend represents in their country is there.

    00:14:51

    Xochitl

    A word for it in your culture, in your language, and is it more similar to American culture or more similar to collectivist cultures like Mexico and Korea?

    00:15:03

    Xochitl

    Yeah, and yeah, I'm really curious to hear from you guys, so please leave a comment down below at A-Z, englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at AZ englishpodcast@gmail.com and join the week channel. Also groups to join.

    00:15:14

    Xochitl

    The conversation and.

    00:15:15

    Xochitl

    We'll see you guys next time. Bye bye.

    00:15:17

    발표자

    We're back.


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    E16 - 16m - May 20, 2024
  • Vocabulary Spotlight | Slang terms that have become common

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about slang terms that have become commonly used by many English speakers.

    Bling: This term refers to flashy, ostentatious jewelry or other luxurious accessories. Originating from the sound of something sparkling, "bling" became popular in the late 1990s and early 2000s, particularly through the music of artists like Lil Wayne and the Cash Money Millionaires.


    Crib: Originally slang for a house or apartment, "crib" has been widely adopted in mainstream speech to refer to one's home. The term gained broader recognition through its use in hip hop lyrics and shows like "MTV Cribs."


    Dope: While it can refer to drugs, in hip hop slang, "dope" means something excellent or outstanding. This positive connotation has crossed over into mainstream usage to describe anything that's impressive or cool.


    Lit: Initially used to describe something that is exciting or excellent, "lit" has become a popular term across various age groups to denote that a party or event is lively and enjoyable. It has evolved to encompass anything exciting or fun.


    Salty: In hip hop, being "salty" means feeling upset, bitter, or angry, often over something trivial. This term has been widely adopted to describe someone's attitude when they're annoyed or disappointed.


    Throw Shade: This phrase means to subtly or indirectly disrespect or criticize someone. Originating from drag culture and popularized by hip hop and R&B communities, "throw shade" is now a common way to describe the act of making a sly, critical remark.


    OG: Short for "Original Gangster," this term initially referred to someone who has been around for a long time and has a significant amount of respect and experience in a particular field or community. In mainstream usage, it now often refers to someone who is authentic or an originator in any context.


    Legit: Short for "legitimate," this term is used to describe something that is real, authentic, or genuine. It is often used to express approval or to confirm the credibility of something or someone.

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    E22 - 11m - May 20, 2024
  • Topic Talk | Recurring Dreams

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about their recurring dreams.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:56

    Jack

    Welcome to the 80s English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we're doing a topic talk episode and social. The topic is recurring dreams and.

    00:01:08

    Xochitl

    I like this one interesting good.

    00:01:09

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah. Do you have one or do you want me?

    00:01:12

    Jack

    To go first.

    00:01:13

    Xochitl

    I have a couple you can do you want.

    00:01:15

    Xochitl

    Me to start or?

    00:01:16

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah, you go ahead and start. Yeah.

    00:01:18

    Xochitl

    I one of them that I have is when I was younger I used to have this recurring dream where there were these like little they look like mini M&M's. They're like these bunch of little colored like round things and they're these like witches, cartoon witches and blue capes.

    00:01:39

    Xochitl

    That would like.

    00:01:40

    Xochitl

    ZAP them or something and that happened a few different times, like I had that dream a few different times. It was weird.

    00:01:48

    Xochitl

    And and another one that's only been prevalent since I was a kid all the way through adulthood. Still, if I'm really stressed, I get a dream that I have a tooth in my hand and I have to, like, cut it open and get the tooth out like there's a.

    00:02:03

    Jack

    Whoa, that's crazy.

    00:02:05

    Xochitl

    It's weird.

    00:02:07

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's really, really weird and this is happened every time since I was a kid all the way in.

    00:02:14

    Xochitl

    So now.

    00:02:15

    Jack

    Our listeners out there do some research and let us know what that means. A tooth embedded in your hand that you have to take it.

    00:02:23

    Xochitl

    It's like inside. It's like it's like it's like there's a. It's almost like it grew inside my hand and it's like I can X-ray, see through it or something. And I have to cut it up and pull it out and like, it looks like a mouth and guns inside or something. I don't know. It's freaking weird. Like, yeah, it is very weird and very vivid. I have super, super vivid dreams.

    00:02:36

    Jack

    Wow.

    00:02:43

    Xochitl

    I always have since I was a kid, so it's like very strange.

    00:02:46

    Jack

    Do you remember your dream?

    00:02:48

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I remember a lot of dreams. So it's good. Yeah.

    00:02:51

    Jack

    OK.

    00:02:54

    Jack

    Like, do you?

    00:02:54

    Jack

    Is there some sort of strategy that you use to remember them, or is it just something that happens naturally?

    00:03:00

    Xochitl

    Well, it happens naturally sometimes. I wish I didn't. I'll like I get sometimes I get tons of crazy dreams in one night and they're like, they're like home movie plots and a lot of times they're like horror movie plots. And they're, like, really intense in detail. And I and I like, wake up and I'll go back to sleep and I'll have another dream like that. And it just keeps going.

    00:03:18

    Xochitl

    I'll have like four or five at night.

    00:03:20

    Xochitl

    And I'm straight. They're like a movie, like a full movie with characters and everything. It's like real.

    00:03:25

    Xochitl

    Weird.

    00:03:26

    Jack

    Are you always the star of the dream?

    00:03:29

    Xochitl

    No, no, no, no. So I, a lot of times I'm not even in the dream. I'm just watching it like a movie.

    00:03:34

    Jack

    Ohh so there's like characters. There's like story developments. There's ohh.

    00:03:38

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's a whole plot that has nothing to do with me. It's like, imagine that you're watching a movie, but like, I don't see myself watching it. It's like, literally you're seeing it through your eyes and like, you're just observing. You're just an observer to this movie that's unfolding. That's exactly what I am. I'm just observing these characters. And like, their life and stuff. And it doesn't have anything to do with.

    00:03:59

    Jack

    Wow, that's really interesting because I don't think I've ever had a dream where I'm not. You know, the main character like, it's not. It's. Yeah, it's just me.

    00:04:05

    Xochitl

    There it is.

    00:04:07

    Xochitl

    Ohh.

    00:04:08

    Jack

    You know, it might be like a a story in a in a movie type thing, but I'm always the main character of my own dreams.

    00:04:16

    Jack

    I wonder.

    00:04:16

    Xochitl

    That's so weird.

    00:04:18

    Xochitl

    I also have a recurring dream where I would like try to read in the dream, and then I'd be like, wait a minute. I can't read. This is a dream. Like, that's the closest I've ever been to lucid dreaming is like I would try to write or read, but I've I I've only listed dreamt once where I was like. I don't like the plot of this. So I just changed.

    00:04:28

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:04:36

    Xochitl

    Bit because I was bored with my dream, so I like lucid, lucid dreaming for listeners who don't know, we'll do an episode on it another time because I think it's very interesting, but it's like the person can control their dream and do whatever they want inside and they're aware.

    00:04:49

    Xochitl

    That they're dreaming.

    00:04:53

    Xochitl

    And I was, I think I've only really had it happen. Super, super like.

    00:04:59

    Xochitl

    I know 100% that I lose a dream does only happen.

    00:05:02

    Xochitl

    Like once for me.

    00:05:03

    Jack

    Yeah, well, you have a strange dream life. I mean, the fact that you're that you remember your dreams, that you have long form stories and plots and things like that. The fact that you're not the star of of all your dreams like the main.

    00:05:04

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:05:19

    Jack

    You're.

    00:05:20

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I'm ******* not.

    00:05:21

    발표자

    You're. I think you're you're.

    00:05:22

    Jack

    Yeah. You're kind of outside the norm. I think when it comes to dreamlife.

    00:05:26

    Xochitl

    Ah, interesting. I didn't know that. I'm curious to hear from our listeners. Are you guys like me? Have you had dreams where you're not the star, which especially recently has been a lot of my dreams? Do you have dreams like you don't know any of the characters or people or plot involved like me? And do you remember your dreams?

    00:05:47

    Xochitl

    Are you a vivid dreamer? Do you lose a dream? I'm really curious to hear from our listeners about this. Nothing.

    00:05:53

    Jack

    Yeah, I am too, because.

    00:05:56

    Jack

    I I just think that like UM.

    00:05:59

    Jack

    I I thought, but you know, maybe it's just because that's the way it is for me. But I thought most people.

    00:06:06

    Jack

    Kind of it like, I'm not always myself in my dream. I might be a different person, but I'm still controlling the actions of the person or whatever. You know, I'm like I'm.

    00:06:18

    Jack

    The IT I see it through that the lens of of that person, but it's it might not be me exactly, but usually it it it always feels what we say in English like first person, you know, like it's me. I'm doing something and I'm moving around and so.

    00:06:33

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:06:38

    Jack

    But I for me, I forget my dreams almost immediately.

    00:06:44

    Jack

    Now if I write it down, I might be able to remember it, but I'm too lazy to, you know, wake up in the morning and take a sketch pad and and write down notes about my dreams, which is actually one of the strategies for lucid dreaming. If you want to practice lucid dreaming.

    00:07:01

    발표자

    OK.

    00:07:04

    Jack

    You've got to keep a dream journal.

    00:07:06

    Jack

    That's like a really important thing, yeah.

    00:07:08

    Xochitl

    That's interesting. I'm actually curious to to, like, make a dream journal and see if I can make a plot out of the movies that I like. See cause I think I could. Honestly, if they're so cool, like I could just if I could make a movie out of the movies that I see in my dreams, I think they.

    00:07:26

    Xochitl

    Would be really popular in the horror genre because they're very weird.

    00:07:31

    Xochitl

    I remember my used to tell my room. My roommate used to in college used to.

    00:07:37

    Xochitl

    Be very excited to hear my dreams the next day.

    00:07:39

    Xochitl

    Because.

    00:07:40

    Xochitl

    That's a movie I would watch. Just watch this. She she'd be like I didn't have a weird dream. She was always curious about about that.

    00:07:43

    Jack

    Thank you.

    00:07:49

    Jack

    This is the total. This is a total aside, but I you know, Elon Musk is developing something called neurolink. You know where they you can kind of put a computer chip in the brain of a of a human being. That's like one of his ambitions.

    00:07:49

    Xochitl

    But what about?

    00:07:52

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:08:04

    Xochitl

    Alright.

    00:08:04

    Jack

    And I was always. I always thought, like in the future, instead of film makers.

    00:08:12

    Jack

    They'll figure out a way to record dreams like a movie, you know, through a person's brain. And then there will be professional dreamers like you. You would be a good candidate for a professional dreamer.

    00:08:16

    Xochitl

    You're right.

    00:08:25

    Xochitl

    Haven't have you seen that movie? There's a movie based on that. It's called it's like the green dealers or some sleep dealer or something. I'll, I'll. I'll tell. I'll send you a message and Jack and I can leave it in the description or something for our listeners are curious, but it's about like.

    00:08:28

    Jack

    Oh, is it really? I've never.

    00:08:42

    Xochitl

    It's weird, I I saw it when I was really young. It came out and my dad had me watch it. But it's like a movie based between Mexico and the US and I think.

    00:08:50

    Xochitl

    They have like.

    00:08:53

    Xochitl

    It's like a side hustle or something and they do exactly what you're saying. Like, they record these dreams and they, like, sell them or something weird. I don't know. So there was some. It's something like that, but.

    00:09:01

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:09:04

    Jack

    Well, people that people that dream in in like story form that has like a whole, you know, uh, a kind of cinematic movie like arc to the story.

    00:09:16

    Jack

    If you could, if you could do that in your dreams, you could. You know, you could become like a essentially a director, like a film, like a filmmaker. So yeah, maybe in the future that will be a technology that will be available.

    00:09:26

    Xochitl

    Yeah, for sure.

    00:09:31

    Xochitl

    The thinking was, do you have recurring dream, Jack, do you have recurring dreams? I forgot what?

    00:09:35

    Jack

    Yes, I do have recurring recurring dream and this one is really common among a lot of people. But what what it is basically is that I.

    00:09:51

    Jack

    I have registered for a course. It could be a high school or a college course or something. And let's say I sign up for five classes.

    00:10:01

    Jack

    And then I forget to go to 1.

    00:10:04

    Jack

    Or I can't find the classroom on the whole semester. I spend my time walking through this like labyrinth like a A. A very.

    00:10:15

    Jack

    A large building with lots of rooms and a kid just can't find my room and I've already paid for the class and the course and everything. And then when I finally find the classroom, I've missed, like almost all of the lessons. And then it's time for the test and I'm totally unprepared for it. And I'm sure there's a meaning to this dream.

    00:10:33

    Xochitl

    Terrible.

    00:10:37

    Jack

    Like there has to be some kind of meaning to it.

    00:10:41

    Jack

    But I I don't know what it is exactly.

    00:10:43

    Xochitl

    I think it's.

    00:10:43

    Xochitl

    Just a stress dream. I mean, I I remember when we studied dreams in psychology, there was like two types of content and one is like what you visualized in the dream and the other content is what you feel in the dream. So the feeling is what really what you see in your dream is supposed to be random neural firings or something. And what you feel in the dream.

    00:11:04

    Xochitl

    Is supposed to be related to your real life. So I think that level of stress is like what it is supposedly on some level. But but if you think dreams have meanings, which I also sometimes.

    00:11:13

    Xochitl

    With. Yeah, I think that's relevant, I definitely.

    00:11:18

    Xochitl

    Have dreamt that once before at least, and I remember being so devastated when I woke up, I was like, thank God that was the dream I was so worried I had, like, failed this math course because I just skipped through it.

    00:11:29

    Jack

    Yeah, is I wake up with I I feel.

    00:11:33

    Jack

    Intense anxiety. And then I wake up and I just have like, this huge sigh of relief because it's like, ohh, I didn't just destroy my life, you know, I didn't just waste all this money on a class and then never show up and fail.

    00:11:46

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:11:49

    Jack

    That, but it's a it's an awful feeling. It really is an awful feeling.

    00:11:54

    Xochitl

    Bad. Yeah, I get those kind of stress dreams. I I've only had like one or or two. Like school type dreams since I left school. Well, at least in the last five years. No, wait. I only graduated like, three years ago. Well, it feels like I graduated five years ago. So, yeah, I I think I.

    00:12:11

    발표자

    Right.

    00:12:15

    Xochitl

    I don't really get those dreams much anymore, but I I get what you mean and and I remember one of my professors in college saying even her mom was like in her 60s. I had a dream like that and she was like it just shows.

    00:12:26

    Xochitl

    You.

    00:12:26

    Xochitl

    How traumatic school is because the learning task isn't so like anxiety inducing that we still dream about it years later, you know.

    00:12:29

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:12:36

    Xochitl

    It's like really weird.

    00:12:38

    Jack

    I I I.

    00:12:38

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:12:39

    Jack

    Do a lot of things like I have a lot of we say in English irons in the fire like I have. I do a lot of projects a lot.

    00:12:46

    Jack

    Of things going.

    00:12:47

    Jack

    On I think maybe it's just the anxiety of.

    00:12:51

    Jack

    Forgetting to do something that I need to do when you have a lot a long list of of of things that you need to take care of and when they start to pile up and you start to fall behind, that's when I get those dreams is that I'm. I'm I'm. I'm not doing something that I'm supposed to be doing and I or I forgot something important.

    00:12:59

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:13:04

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:13:11

    Jack

    And yeah, that's a real a really terrible feeling. So yeah, that's my recurring dream.

    00:13:19

    Xochitl

    That's crazy, listeners. I'm really curious to hear what your recurring dreams are, or if you have recurring dreams. I think we'll do a couple of different podcasts just on dreams, cause this is such a fascinating subject to me, but I'm. I'm so curious to hear about your guys's experiences and just what your dream life looks like.

    00:13:30

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:13:38

    Xochitl

    Because Jack and I have have different ones, I I've even gotten to the point where sometimes I don't know if something is a memory or a dream because my dreams are.

    00:13:45

    Xochitl

    So vivid.

    00:13:46

    Jack

    Right, right.

    00:13:48

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's it's really, I'm really curious to hear how you guys experienced dreams. So let us know in a comment down below at AZ englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail. We love reading you guys listener.

    00:13:58

    Xochitl

    Emails at A-Z, englishpodcast@gmail.com and join the WeChat and also groups to talk to.

    00:14:03

    Xochitl

    Jack and I.

    00:14:03

    Xochitl

    Directly and if you guys feel so inclined, then you have $1.99 to spare. Please make sure that you join our exclusive episode podcast.

    00:14:12

    Xochitl

    Because that helps us create more content and make new source content for you guys. See you guys next time. Bye bye.

    00:14:20

    Jack

    Bye.


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    E27 - 15m - May 19, 2024
  • Culture Corner | What do you hate about your culture?

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about aspects of their cultures that they strongly dislike.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:56

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host, Social and social. I thought today we could read the names of a couple of our our patrons.

    00:01:09

    발표자

    Hmm.

    00:01:09

    Jack

    And so.

    00:01:12

    Jack

    The first one that I want to read is Isabel Isabel from.

    00:01:17

    Jack

    Ireland. She's actually.

    00:01:19

    Xochitl

    Thank you, Isabel.

    00:01:20

    Jack

    Yeah. Thank you, Isabel. She's not from Ireland, but she lives in Ireland and uh, it's very exciting to have her as a patron for the show. Another one of our patrons is Johnny from China.

    00:01:37

    Xochitl

    Thank you, Johnny.

    00:01:38

    Jack

    Yeah. Thank you, Johnny. Johnny's been on the show. Actually. I interviewed him. And so he's. Yeah, he was on the podcast, and he's amazing. His If you talk to him, he sounds like he's got an American accent. Yeah, it's amazing. Just perfect.

    00:01:41

    Xochitl

    Oh, it's great.

    00:01:50

    Xochitl

    Oh wow.

    00:01:55

    Jack

    Next up, we've got may from Malaysia.

    00:01:58

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:01:59

    Xochitl

    Thank you. Day.

    00:02:00

    Jack

    Yeah. And Salima from Iran.

    00:02:04

    Xochitl

    Thank you, Selina.

    00:02:05

    Jack

    Yeah. And Leila from Saudi Arabia.

    00:02:09

    Xochitl

    Ohh, thank you, Layla. I love Layla.

    00:02:11

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah, yeah.

    00:02:12

    Xochitl

    Well, that has a very nice voice if anyone's ever heard her voice to the chat.

    00:02:17

    Jack

    Yes.

    00:02:17

    Xochitl

    I I test with labels boys.

    00:02:20

    Jack

    Yeah, she's a very, very sweet voice. Very soft spoken, but yeah, very soothing. Yeah.

    00:02:23

    Xochitl

    You have a soothing kind of.

    00:02:24

    Xochitl

    A.

    00:02:26

    Xochitl

    Calming voice I really enjoy.

    00:02:27

    Jack

    Good, good, good podcasting voice, I think.

    00:02:29

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I think she would, too, for sure. Anyway, thank you so much to our patrons who are supporting our exclusive content. It really, really allows Jack and I to make more content and higher quality content. So we really, really appreciate it. And thank you so much. Hopefully we will get some more supporters here. And thanks to those who have already begun to support us.

    00:02:31

    Jack

    You know.

    00:02:51

    Jack

    Yeah. So today's topic is things that you hate about your culture and uh, I'm not going to.

    00:02:58

    Jack

    Talk about Korean culture. I'm going to stay away from that because it is not my place or my position to critique Korean culture. I've lived here for 30 or 20 years. But you know, when it comes to critiquing culture, I think you have to do it from your own culture. You know you have to because you're critiquing yourself too.

    00:03:20

    Jack

    And.

    00:03:21

    Jack

    The things about American culture, probably the number one problem that I have with American culture, is that we're very individualistic.

    00:03:31

    Jack

    My problems are my problems. Your problems are your problems. Don't put your problems on me, you know, and I understand that attitude because in some ways I do hate when someone is.

    00:03:46

    Jack

    In a in a interpersonal relationship where one person is always leaning on another person for help all the time and never able to like you know, support themselves. Yeah, yeah, I think that is negative, but I think I I think looking at the the.

    00:03:57

    Xochitl

    Reciprocate.

    00:04:05

    Jack

    Country as a whole and saying and seeing it all is just individuals, not as a as a group. You know, working together to try to make the society better and more equitable and fair for all of the people that live there. I think that's a bad thing. So.

    00:04:24

    Jack

    So I think it it kind of shows up in like certain aspects of the culture. For example, our obsession with guns, you know?

    00:04:37

    Jack

    Stay off my property. Get off my, get off my yard. Get out of my yard. Yeah, or or I'll shoot you. You know, this, this idea that we need to, you know, I need to have a gun and multiple guns in my house to protect all my stuff from, you know.

    00:04:57

    Jack

    My neighbor who's going to try to steal my stuff and.

    00:05:00

    Jack

    And I I don't know. I just feel like that we're, we're hyper obsessed. We're very obsessed with ourselves and.

    00:05:11

    Jack

    I I think we're also obsessed with consuming things. You know, consumerism. That's another one that I think we should, I should mention, is that we're always.

    00:05:22

    Jack

    We can't wait to buy the next thing that's going to make our lives perfect, you know, finally, if I just buy this one more thing, I'm going to be.

    00:05:31

    Jack

    Happy.

    00:05:32

    Jack

    Nope. I just got buy this one more thing. One more thing. One more thing, you know, and it really has nothing to do with making ourselves happy. A lot of times, buying things is about showing other people.

    00:05:42

    Jack

    Ohh.

    00:05:43

    Jack

    Successful we are, you know, look what I got. You know, I have this, but you don't have this. And so I think consumerism and individualism and obsession with guns is are are issues that I really have a problem with. But that just scratches the surface. You know, there's a lot more.

    00:05:45

    Xochitl

    Right, yeah.

    00:06:03

    Jack

    I could go into, but I'm not going to. I'll I'll jump to you and I'll kick it to you and let you share yours.

    00:06:12

    Xochitl

    Jack, I think.

    00:06:12

    Xochitl

    You pretty much covered things I really dislike about the US, especially our gun culture is another aspect that I really dislike about the US we have a problem with gun culture. We endanger the lives of children every single day. It's uncontrolled and it really just.

    00:06:32

    Xochitl

    Exists for no other purpose than for gun nuts to boost their egos.

    00:06:39

    Xochitl

    I'm thinking they could start a militia that could rival the US military, which would never happen.

    00:06:45

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:06:46

    Xochitl

    It it it's just.

    00:06:49

    Xochitl

    It's ridiculous, honestly, and it's unfortunate because our inability as a culture to condemn these rampant unsafe gun culture leads to so many tragedies, both on a personal and a cultural.

    00:07:08

    Xochitl

    Well, and so it's something that I really, really dislike about US culture, another another culture that I'm a part of is Mexican culture. And I have a couple of critiques for Mexican culture as well.

    00:07:22

    Xochitl

    One is that older generations will push around and demand things from the younger generation and the amount of control that they're comfortable having over.

    00:07:31

    Xochitl

    Younger generations just feel so inappropriate from a western lens, and because I was raised in both cultures, it it can be hard for me to swallow at times. And it's interesting to me because, for example, my mom or other older people will often boss me around or expect a lot to for me to do a lot for them.

    00:07:41

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:07:52

    Xochitl

    Like a servant almost.

    00:07:54

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:07:56

    Xochitl

    I just saw, you know, people.

    00:07:58

    Xochitl

    Older than my mom and my aunt who were also family, treat my mom and my aunt the same way and they really didn't like it. They had kind of forgotten that staple of Mexican culture in a way, and they had remembered to do it to me, but they had kind of forgotten what it was like for it to be done to them. And so it I think it's an aspect of culture that you see.

    00:08:18

    Xochitl

    In a lot of cultures I know that this is a staple in some East Asian cultures. I know that this can happen. African cultures as well.

    00:08:23

    Jack

    Yeah, there is like that.

    00:08:26

    Xochitl

    UM, but it's definitely a difficult.

    00:08:31

    Xochitl

    Uh, aspect of the culture to grapple with, and it's something that makes me uncomfortable. I really hope when I'm older that I don't push you around or boss around the younger generation or feel that I'm superior just because I have more experience. There is benefits to having more experience. I think that there's since we can respect from someone who is older than us and has more experience.

    00:08:51

    Xochitl

    But I do believe in mutual respect and mutual appreciation, appreciating things those people do for you, appreciating things that them and them appreciating things you do for them as well.

    00:09:03

    Jack

    It's like you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. It's like if you treat treat them and lovingly and and they they'll want to take care of you. It's not instead of just saying like you will take care of me. I'm, you know, bossing you around, telling you what to do. You could do it in a much nicer way. It's it's like it's.

    00:09:07

    Xochitl

    Yes, yes.

    00:09:13

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:09:17

    발표자

    Right.

    00:09:23

    Jack

    It's it's it's kind of an interesting thing because I think in Korea, maybe they they have the same situation.

    00:09:28

    Jack

    Where when you're younger, you get abused, you know, by the older people. But then once you're the older people, then you get to abuse younger people. It's like somebody needs to stop this cycle of abuse, you know, like, let's just cut the, you know, cut it off and just be nice to each other, you know? But it's just it's not.

    00:09:37

    Xochitl

    Few.

    00:09:38

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:09:41

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:09:49

    Jack

    It's very hard to change culture. Culture is.

    00:09:53

    Jack

    It's it's it's it's like a bullet train, you know, like it's got so much, uh, weight and and power behind it. It's very hard to stop it and.

    00:09:54

    Xochitl

    Very instilled.

    00:10:02

    Jack

    Slow it down, you know.

    00:10:05

    Xochitl

    Another thing that I dislike about Mexican culture is that I feel that we can be really xenophobic. And it's strange because we have. We're a multicultural country, we have Jewish people, we have people of African descent that came across on the slave ships. We have people of East Asian descent. We have people of Southeast Asian.

    00:10:26

    Xochitl

    Designed of of South Asian to.

    00:10:28

    Xochitl

    And of course, we are a nation of Native Americans, and we have.

    00:10:35

    Xochitl

    European ancestry as well due to colonization, but.

    00:10:42

    Xochitl

    We sometimes in Mexican culture take a hostile attitude towards.

    00:10:47

    Xochitl

    People who are from different cultures, that there's there's a lot of hostility sometimes towards.

    00:10:55

    Xochitl

    Immigrants in a way. Uh and.

    00:10:59

    Xochitl

    It's weird. It's kind of weird behavior. It reminds me a little bit of of how uh, Korea isn't my culture, so I'm not trying to get docs here, but I do remember when I went there there was a completely different treatment, how I was treated versus how my black coworker was treated.

    00:11:18

    Jack

    Hmm.

    00:11:19

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:11:20

    Xochitl

    It was painful to watch her, like, go to the bank and then get rejected versus I basically got VIP treatment. When I walked into the bank and it's just I feel that sometimes we're somewhere in Mexico. There's a huge aspect of colorism that comes from the colonial hierarchy, because, of course, the Spanish were white, were at the.

    00:11:40

    Xochitl

    Top.

    00:11:40

    Xochitl

    Indigenous people were kind of in the mid range and then black people were at the bottom of the cultural hierarchy and then there was a.

    00:11:48

    Xochitl

    Hierarchy for every single different mix and a name for every single different mix that you could get from any of those.

    00:11:55

    Xochitl

    So I think unfortunately.

    00:11:59

    Xochitl

    That caste system does bleed through in colorism that we see in modern day Mexico and in how we think and perceive learners. And I also think another part that's similar with Korean culture as well is that we were colonized nation. So sometimes we.

    00:12:18

    Xochitl

    We value the preservation of our culture very strongly, but that can come out in the wrong way too. And it's a beautiful thing. But it's something that.

    00:12:32

    Xochitl

    We need to recognize our influences from other cultures in every aspect of any culture in the world.

    00:12:37

    Jack

    Yeah, too much patriotism can be a little bit. Yeah. I don't know what you would call it. Ethnocentrism or something like that.

    00:12:43

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:12:46

    Xochitl

    Yeah, like ethnocentrism. And it's kind of invented because.

    00:12:51

    Xochitl

    Uh, you can hear African beats in traditional Mexican music. You can hear hear the tacos that we eat. Some of them are fashioned after Middle Eastern immigrants do.

    00:12:56

    Jack

    Sure.

    00:13:07

    Xochitl

    Chinese immigrants made a lot of cultural impact. They were the second biggest immigrant immigrant group after the Spanish to Mexico, and so.

    00:13:15

    Jack

    Hmm.

    00:13:18

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I think we need to appreciate all of that diversity in a respectful way.

    00:13:25

    Jack

    Yeah. Yeah, it's interesting to hear you talk like that because you know, as an American, we we, you know, have have obviously recently in the news heard about.

    00:13:37

    Jack

    The immigrants coming across the Mexican border into America being treated really, really poorly.

    00:13:45

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:13:46

    Jack

    And and and and judged and and considered lower class citizens. And all this sort of stuff. Right and.

    00:13:55

    Xochitl

    Thanks.

    00:13:57

    Jack

    And to hear that that same thing occurs in Mexico as well, it's kind of it's kind of surprising, you know, because you think like ohh, if you're the victim of it, then you'll never be the perpetrator of the same behavior. But it's that's not true you.

    00:14:03

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:14:13

    Jack

    No. Yeah, I think. And also I mean, for being honest, like a lot of gun violence in Mexico is a symptom of all the guns that we make in America and and, you know, and the.

    00:14:25

    발표자

    OK.

    00:14:30

    Xochitl

    Yep, Yep.

    00:14:34

    Jack

    And the if you're talking about cartel money or things like that, a lot of that money comes from drugs they sell in America because Americans have an insatiable.

    00:14:45

    Jack

    Need and and lust for drugs. So it's like, you know, it's a very toxic relationship, you know, between the two countries. And so those are the aspects of the the culture that I really I I I agree with you 100% I I wish that we could somehow solve these problems you know.

    00:14:48

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:15:04

    Xochitl

    Yeah. All right, listen as well, if you have something that you would like to share that you hate about your own culture or strongly dislike.

    00:15:11

    Xochitl

    Make sure to leave a comment down below at A-Z englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at at ozenglishpodcast@gmail.com. We love to read, listen our emails. We can read them on the podcast without mentioning your name. Is that something that you would like or you would be interested in? So don't be shy about sending emails. We really do enjoy.

    00:15:31

    Xochitl

    Reading them here on the pod and reading listener.

    00:15:34

    Xochitl

    Join the WeChat and WhatsApp groups to join the conversation and we will see you guys next.

    00:15:38

    Xochitl

    Time. Bye bye.

    00:15:39

    Jack

    Bye.


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    E15 - 16m - May 16, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVETopic Talk | The future of AI and its effect on people's jobs

    In this exclusive episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about the future of AI and how it is going to affect people's jobs.

    Transcript:

    00:00:56

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are doing a topic talk and today's topic is the future of AI and how it's going to affect jobs and.

    00:01:11

    Jack

    I feel like you have a kind of first hand experience with this, or at least first hand knowledge of this and maybe you could share it with our listeners.

    00:01:21

    Xochitl

    Jack UMI know that when AI was first coming out, I believe that we had hope as a culture, that automated technology would be used to take over the more laborious and difficult tasks, and that as humans we would have a more peaceful and easy existence with production being relied on by machinery.

    00:01:43

    Xochitl

    Primarily, and things like art, poetry, philosophy and all the fun things could be for humans to dwell on and.

    00:01:55

    Xochitl

    Wait. Unfortunately, it's kind of gone the other way, and now AI AI is being used to produce art and poetry and screenplays. And so that was a huge reason for the writer strike in Hollywood. If you're familiar with that. And and it's a huge reason that artists are striking.

    00:02:15

    Xochitl

    And not producing their content to be available on the Internet anymore because their art is getting stolen, said to AI artificial intelligence and then artificial intelligence is creating art styles from a lot of these profiles.

    00:02:31

    발표자

    So.

    00:02:31

    Jack

    And I'll just want to add one more thing about the Hollywood strike. It also is that they want to be able to use your image. So let's say, for example, there's there's a scene in a coffee shop.

    00:02:44

    Jack

    And there they won't. There will no longer be extras.

    00:02:49

    Jack

    In the background.

    00:02:51

    Jack

    It'll just be a green screen of of a of basically.

    00:02:56

    Jack

    They just have, like lots of different examples of of people sitting in restaurants and then you'll have your actors at the table and then the green screen in the background will just be filled in with AI people.

    00:03:11

    Jack

    And so that's where they're heading to. So heading to the point where you no longer need that many people for a production, you just need, you don't need background at characters and stuff. You just, they just those will be superimposed through AI in the background and it'll fill the the cafe or the.

    00:03:31

    Jack

    Restaurants or the movie theater or whatever will just be there won't be any real people there. It'll just be all put in afterwards through.

    00:03:41

    Jack

    Right.

    00:03:42

    Xochitl

    I had no idea about this. That's insane. On top of that, I know that AI is being used.

    00:03:52

    Xochitl

    To produce like deep things which are confusing because they can like recreate like they AI could virtually at this point, if Jack and I.

    00:04:03

    Xochitl

    Were interesting enough.

    00:04:04

    Xochitl

    They could take our voice saying multiple different things and they could create a podcast episode of A-Z.

    00:04:11

    Jack

    Right. Yeah, exactly. Exactly, yeah.

    00:04:11

    Xochitl

    And they could, with AI create that and use deep fakes basically to to mock our voices, like imitate our voices, and they could use the video footage to recreate our faces, making different expressions and talking. And so they're becoming more and more realistic, which is a problem.

    00:04:30

    Xochitl

    On top of that, they're they're starting to use AI influencers too, so, you know, influencers age out or they stop becoming trendy or what have you. And they're also expensive because.

    00:04:44

    Xochitl

    Companies have to pay influencers to promote a product for every single appearance, for every single story mentioned, yeah.

    00:04:51

    Jack

    Even like travel time, getting on an airplane, airplane tickets, that sort of stuff, it's just expensive staying.

    00:04:57

    Jack

    At hotel, yeah.

    00:04:59

    Xochitl

    So now they can make AI, or they're trying to make AI influencers.

    00:05:06

    Xochitl

    And one thing.

    00:05:07

    Xochitl

    Where it affected me recently, I wasn't even aware of is someone suggested I take up a job doing AI annotation which I will not be doing, but essentially it's a job that you can take where you annotate translations done by AI. So I is interpreter, translator.

    00:05:25

    Xochitl

    I would be fixing and tweaking responses or translations and interpretations that AI has created.

    00:05:33

    Xochitl

    In order to make. Yeah, I'm TA I yes.

    00:05:33

    Jack

    Teaching the AI right, teaching the AI.

    00:05:38

    Jack

    A. How to steal your job, basically.

    00:05:40

    Xochitl

    Yes, which I don't want to do. And so at that point.

    00:05:42

    Jack

    Right.

    00:05:48

    Xochitl

    It's just.

    00:05:49

    Xochitl

    Wild to think that so many of these jobs that are.

    00:05:54

    Xochitl

    Key to our survival, to our human relationships, to the way we interact with the world. The reality as we know it is can be completely simply taken over by AI. And I think we're going to have to see legislature, which means laws come into place in the near future regulating what AI is allowed to and not allowed to do.

    00:06:15

    Xochitl

    And which jobs AI will be allowed to and not allowed to take over, and hopefully that will benefit us. But you just think about the amount of energy and funding that was put into AI being able to take over jobs that are kind of easier on the body.

    00:06:32

    Xochitl

    And whatnot and realizing that all the hard labor that is acting. Yeah, yeah.

    00:06:38

    Jack

    Yeah. Ditch digging. Yeah, construction.

    00:06:42

    Jack

    Used to be, yeah.

    00:06:43

    Xochitl

    Underpaid labor that gets paid a terrible wage for such a completely exhausting job that wears you down is not being replaced by AI. It's things like art and translation and interpreting and screen writing and acting and all those fun.

    00:07:04

    Xochitl

    Human beings are going to be taken over by AI. It just really makes me.

    00:07:08

    Xochitl

    Things.

    00:07:08

    Jack

    And it's all mediocre, mediocre arts, mediocre translation. Mediocre. You know, it doesn't. You take away the human, the human touch to it. I I just don't think AI is able to.

    00:07:21

    Jack

    I I don't know. I I don't think an AI poem is ever going to be able to come close to a real poet, you know?

    00:07:32

    Xochitl

    It can. It can replicate what we've captured so far of the human experience, but it cannot think and ponder on on new experiences.

    00:07:43

    Jack

    I've been told it's like this. I've heard it explained like this, it's like UM.

    00:07:48

    Jack

    It's like a, it's like a glorified uh auto fill.

    00:07:53

    Xochitl

    Kind of.

    00:07:54

    Jack

    Yeah, I mean, that's what we're talking about here. We're. Let's not. I don't think we should be in such awe of chat. Sorry, I'm not going to say the name of the the company, but I don't think we should be in such awe of these like AI programs or platforms or what.

    00:08:11

    Jack

    Whatever. And I, you know, to the point where where we think it's magic, like it's just algorithms and and data bases and things like that. And it is amazing like it it can do a lot of stuff and I use those platforms you know, but I'm also not.

    00:08:31

    Jack

    You know, to the point not to the point where I'm like, oh, I can't wait till there's no need for real poets anymore. And then we just get all of our poetry and our screenplays and our our books, all written by, you know, AI.

    00:08:47

    Jack

    That seems like such a dull, sad world. Like I, you know.

    00:08:52

    Jack

    I want my heart to come from human people from you know? Yeah.

    00:08:57

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:08:59

    Xochitl

    Yeah. All right, listeners. Well, I hope you enjoyed this topic. Talk, Jack, and I definitely had an interesting time addressing some of the issues with AI and our opinions about AI. Make sure to leave a comment down below to let us know what you think and how maybe it's affecting your country, your culture, your job.

    00:09:16

    Xochitl

    Aspects we'd be really interested to know. You can also shoot us a listener e-mail Jack and I again. We really love getting listener emails. If you want us to read them on the pod, we're more than happy to umm. If you want us to omit your name, just let us know in the e-mail. And again, we really love receiving bills and make sure to join the lead China WhatsApp group so you can talk to us directly.

    00:09:37

    Xochitl

    Join our exclusive podcast.

    00:09:41

    Xochitl

    Program. I don't know what to call it. If you can spare the dollar 99, we have some exclusive episodes just for subscribers and we are working on a project where we will include some kind of loosening comprehension test and fun things for you guys to get a little bit.

    00:10:02

    Xochitl

    Use and yeah, we will see you guys next time. Bye bye.

    00:10:07

    Jack

    Bye.


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    E26 - 10m - May 15, 2024
  • Topic Talk | Spoon Theory

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about spoon theory:

    Spoon Theory: The Spoon Theory is a metaphor used to explain the limited amount of energy and resources that people with chronic illnesses or disabilities have to accomplish daily tasks and activities. It was coined by Christine Miserandino in 2003 in an essay she wrote to explain her experience with lupus to a friend.

    Transcript:

    00:00:01

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social and today social and I are going to talk about something called Spoon theory and I don't really know what this is, to be honest. I am kind of ignorant on this topic, but social is going to explain.

    00:00:22

    Jack

    The meaning of spoon theory and then we are going to complain like a couple of old people about all of our physical ailments that we're dealing with, right? So, OK, awesome. Alright. What is spoon theory? Social.

    00:00:34

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:00:39

    Xochitl

    So spoon theory is a metaphor, and it describes the amount of physical or mental energy that you have available for daily activities. So if you live with chronic pain or chronic illness, whether it's mental or physical or both, you're kind of limited in a way that other people aren't. And so.

    00:00:59

    Xochitl

    The idea is that you have a set amount of spoons. Let's say you have 10 spoons for your day, and then things that other people don't realize take up energy because they have.

    00:01:09

    Xochitl

    A more fit body do take up energy for people with chronic pain. So let's say getting up and out of bed, taking a shower, making something to eat.

    00:01:23

    Xochitl

    Even getting ready for bed, getting dressed, all those things can put strain on your body and eat up your spoon. So maybe by the time you even get ready to go to work, you're down 5 spoons and someone who doesn't have chronic illness might have just used a spoon or half a spoon of energy to do all those.

    00:01:44

    Jack

    Yeah. And let's just, uh, quickly, uh, unpack a little bit of the vocabulary. Chronic means, like, always constant. So chronic pain means you're always in pain from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed. You have some kind of pain.

    00:01:54

    발표자

    Yes.

    00:02:04

    Jack

    Issue.

    00:02:05

    Jack

    And and so social was describing like, like the spoons are not literally spoons. We're not talking about real spoons. We're saying, like, they're like metaphors. Like, you got 10 spoons and.

    00:02:19

    Xochitl

    They're like units of energy, basically.

    00:02:21

    Jack

    Units of energy. Right. Exactly. And so.

    00:02:24

    Xochitl

    Like hit points on a video game when your character has like a little green.

    00:02:28

    Xochitl

    R.

    00:02:30

    Jack

    Yeah, right. Energy. Your power gets, you know, goes down and down and down, yeah.

    00:02:30

    Xochitl

    And then yeah it.

    00:02:35

    Xochitl

    If your character is a healthy character, let's say they did all their tests and their bar is still green. But if your character has chronic illness, then by the time they're done with their morning routine, they might be down to yellow. They might be.

    00:02:47

    Xochitl

    Down to half points.

    00:02:49

    Jack

    Right. And let's say your energy level for the day for a person with chronic pain is 10 spoon.

    00:02:55

    발표자

    And.

    00:02:56

    Jack

    Like social said, getting ready in the morning, making breakfast, taking a shower, getting dressed, that might be 5 spoons, which means you only have 5 left for the whole day, so you get the bus, get to work, open your computer. You know, there's three more spoons now. You've got 2 spoons.

    00:02:56

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:03:17

    Jack

    Left, you don't even have enough to get home, you know.

    00:03:20

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:03:22

    Jack

    Until you hit the wall right and you're so exhausted.

    00:03:22

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:03:24

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:03:26

    Xochitl

    And a lot of people get through their day-to-day on like a spoon deficit. So you're, but you're the concept basically suggests you're borrowing spoons. You're borrowing energy from your next day, which is how people who have chronic illness might end up pushing through of five day work week and doing 40 hours a week.

    00:03:46

    Xochitl

    But then on the weekend, they're just laying in bed the whole 2 days.

    00:03:50

    Jack

    Right. They're just totally wiped.

    00:03:52

    Jack

    That out. OK, I love the idea of spoon theory. I think it's a really good. I'm not sure why they call it spoons. Like use spoons as the as the example, but it could be anything. Yeah.

    00:04:02

    Xochitl

    Right. I don't know. I think I think because you run out, you run out. I don't know if this is true or not, but you know when you're doing dishes like you only have a certain amount of spoons and you have to do the dishes again.

    00:04:13

    Jack

    Ohh yeah, that's right that that's probably it. Yeah. I think that makes sense. Yeah, so.

    00:04:16

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:04:20

    발표자

    So.

    00:04:22

    Jack

    Uh, I'll, I'll. I'll start with myself here first. Uh, I've been. I've been dealing with. Uh, a chronic chronic back pain for probably 20 years, I would say.

    00:04:34

    Jack

    I had my first.

    00:04:36

    Jack

    My first surgery, my first back surgery for disc.

    00:04:42

    Jack

    Problems when I was 27.

    00:04:45

    Jack

    And and then, uh, probably about 10 years later, maybe 15 years later, I had another back surgery for more disc problems. And now for the last like maybe three weeks. I've been dealing with some serious chronic pain just all the time.

    00:05:07

    Jack

    With my back and my discs again. So what? What I find is when you're in pain all the time.

    00:05:16

    Jack

    You're more tired.

    00:05:18

    Jack

    You can't exercise, so when you eat you get bored. You just sitting around. So. So in for me, I'll eat more to, like comfort myself, which makes me.

    00:05:30

    Xochitl

    Have something to do right? Yeah.

    00:05:32

    Jack

    Gain weight, which makes my back hurt more, which makes me more depressed, which makes me want to eat more, which makes me not exercise more and it's like a a horrible spiral. You know, as I just go down the drain, you know, and things are getting worse and worse, so.

    00:05:48

    발표자

    Right.

    00:05:50

    Jack

    So.

    00:05:51

    Jack

    Yeah. So I so I I know what the spoon theory thing you're talking about is like there are times where I go to work and I run out of spoons, you know, by the my third class, I'm just like.

    00:06:04

    Jack

    I don't. Whatever. You know what, guys? Just take a rest and, you know, draw a picture on your paper or whatever you wanted to, you know, talk with your friend like I'm completely. I'm done. Like I I don't have the the mental capacity.

    00:06:15

    Xochitl

    All right.

    00:06:23

    Jack

    Or the physical capacity to do this anymore?

    00:06:27

    Jack

    And and it's a really, it's a really depressing way to live because living with pain all the time means you're kind of always thinking about the pain. It's always in your mind. And then that leaves a little bit of space for you to think about and deal with other people. So I find that I'm really short tempered.

    00:06:38

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:06:47

    Jack

    With my wife, I'm like, short with my wife. You know, my wife will ask me a question. Like what? You know, what do you want for dinner? What? You know that. That's my response to something like that. And it's like it's so rude.

    00:06:59

    Jack

    And so disgusting of a response. But it's not. It's not because I was mad at her or anything to do with her. It's just cuz I was in some pain. I'm just like not able to focus. Like what? What did you say? Like I I can't. I can't even hear what other people are saying to me. And I really hate being like this. Like it. Really.

    00:06:59

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:07:18

    Jack

    It really makes me frustrated and I and I.

    00:07:21

    Jack

    Can't get good.

    00:07:22

    Jack

    Sleep because I can't lie on my side. It hurts if I lie on my back. It hurts if I.

    00:07:27

    Jack

    Lie on my other side, it hurts.

    00:07:28

    Jack

    So it's really I've I've been dealing with this and and I know that you also have understand what I'm saying, cuz I think you've dealt with some like physical issues as well.

    00:07:38

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:07:39

    Xochitl

    Definitely, Jack. I I completely understand what you're saying. I was born with.

    00:07:45

    Xochitl

    Borderline hip dysplasia and both hips, and that just means my anatomy is wonky, so my bone is like here instead of being here, it's like on the edge of where it's supposed to be. And every time I walk it, like beats up the other bone I.

    00:08:01

    Xochitl

    So it like pinches and it's really bad in one hip specifically, which has become weaker due to the pain, but it's really hard to do physical therapy with it because.

    00:08:09

    발표자

    MHM.

    00:08:14

    Xochitl

    I'm in pain, so it's hard to start doing exercises around it because it hurts more and it's more tiring and I have like a very limited.

    00:08:25

    Xochitl

    Amount of what I can do in one day.

    00:08:28

    Xochitl

    Which means that I'll if I feel like I have energy to do something, I'll do as much as I can in one day and then I'll end up borrowing spoons for the next day. So I'm totally crashed out the next day. I have no energy and I know what you mean. I can also get really short tempered. Uh, one thing, a lot of people don't realize is that.

    00:08:47

    Xochitl

    It affects your sleep.

    00:08:49

    Jack

    Right.

    00:08:49

    Xochitl

    So imagine that you had really poor sleep for like a week straight. At that point, if you're only sleeping.

    00:09:01

    Xochitl

    Far less hours a night than you're supposed to be, far less comfortably. You probably start getting confused, agitated, irritable.

    00:09:12

    Xochitl

    And unfortunately, people around you suffer because.

    00:09:15

    Xochitl

    You can snap at them unexpectedly.

    00:09:18

    Jack

    You're not gonna snap at strangers. You know you're gonna snap it. You're the people that you love because you know that they can't abandon you. You know, it's like.

    00:09:25

    Xochitl

    Right. You're comfortable with, you're comfortable around them and you're also interacting with them?

    00:09:29

    Xochitl

    More, yeah.

    00:09:30

    Xochitl

    On a daily basis than you would with any strangers, right. So.

    00:09:34

    Xochitl

    It does. It is really hard. It it's one of the reasons that I have a hard time.

    00:09:39

    Xochitl

    Finding a full time job that I can do is because.

    00:09:45

    Xochitl

    I only have so many spoons in a day and I really struggled with college when I was in college for the same reason. It's not that the work was too hard.

    00:09:52

    Xochitl

    For.

    00:09:53

    Xochitl

    Me. It was that I would just get so burnt out in a day from I didn't. I like. I won't sleep well. I'm not eating well. I feel terrible. I can't walk well. Some days I really have to drag myself around.

    00:10:08

    Xochitl

    Get anywhere and I think.

    00:10:12

    Xochitl

    It really puts a strain on what you can do in any given day and a lot of people just don't understand.

    00:10:17

    Xochitl

    And especially when it's kind of an invisible disability. So like people like Jack and I, we might look fine to people on the outside, but we're suffering internally through all these physical and emotional stressors because it does affect your mental well-being as well.

    00:10:35

    Jack

    Yeah, chronic pain is is a it. It doesn't just affect your body, it it affects your mind as well it it. It plays games with.

    00:10:42

    Jack

    Your.

    00:10:43

    Jack

    With your mind and and changes your personality and and your outlook on life and and everything so.

    00:10:49

    Jack

    Ohh yeah trying trying to overcome it. If you can find some way of dealing with like physical therapy or some kind of you know if there's a if there's a way out of it. I highly recommend pursuing it if it's possible and staying away from like painkillers and opiates and that sort of stuff.

    00:11:12

    Jack

    Because that stuff is.

    00:11:13

    Jack

    Just uh masks the pain for a little while, but then that'll send you down a whole, you know, could send you.

    00:11:20

    Xochitl

    Ohh, their wormhole, right? Yeah.

    00:11:21

    Jack

    Yes, exactly, exactly so there. You know, there isn't really necessarily always a good solution to our problems. You know, sometimes they can throw painkillers at it. That's not gonna solve the problem.

    00:11:33

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:11:34

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:11:35

    Xochitl

    It's like seeding the monster temporarily, then it like rears its ugly head again.

    00:11:40

    Jack

    Yeah, it it gives you, you get a week of, you know, like a kind of uh. But then you're foggy, you know, you you're not yourself, you know, so.

    00:11:48

    Xochitl

    And you can also get your table like as soon as you're off the pain meds or as soon as anything. Yeah, and you get dependent on them. So I think it. Yeah, I I really haven't had much. I did get an injection, A cortisol injection in my hip.

    00:11:52

    Jack

    All right, absolutely, absolutely.

    00:12:03

    Xochitl

    That worked for about two weeks, and then the pain is back, I suppose, to work for average to three to six months. So I'm like, well, totally didn't work. So I burned through that. So we shall see. But yeah, it is. It is a frustrating condition and I think.

    00:12:11

    Jack

    You're like, whoops.

    00:12:23

    Xochitl

    First world so-called first world countries are just now starting to treat chronic pain as its own condition, not just the underlying cause, but managing it on its own. And we're just now making strides and.

    00:12:37

    Xochitl

    Making accommodations for it in the workplace, and I think we're making big leaps, but yeah, I'm curious to know about your guys's experience as listeners. Do any of you suffer with chronic pain or chronic health conditions? Obviously, only share as much as you're comfortable sharing, but yeah, I'm just curious to know what, what are things like in your country?

    00:12:56

    Xochitl

    UM, how does it operate in your country and your culture?

    00:12:59

    Xochitl

    There.

    00:13:01

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I'm very interested to know. So leave us a comment down below at AZ englishpodcast.com. Shoot us an e-mail at at ozenglishpodcast@gmail.com.

    00:13:10

    Xochitl

    And make sure to join the we chat and WhatsApp groups to talk to us directly. If you can spare $1.99 Jack and I are making exclusive episodes for subscribers. This really helps us to be able to increase the level and amount of content that we're making. So we really appreciate your support and thank you so much to those of you who have subscribed.

    00:13:31

    Xochitl

    Ready. And I'll see you the next.

    00:13:33

    Xochitl

    Time. Bye bye.

    00:13:34

    Jack

    Bye bye.


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    E25 - 15m - May 14, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVECulture Corner | Apps you need to navigate the United States

    In this exclusive episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack recommend some apps that will help you get around if you decide to visit the United States.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:55

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are in the culture corner and social. We're talking about like what apps you would need if you were going to live and navigate the United States.

    00:01:16

    Jack

    You know.

    00:01:16

    Xochitl

    OK. Jack, I have some good ones that I think you really need one that I would like to say is that Google is king in the US and I know that in Korea and and China and some other certain countries, you guys use a different search engine, which means kind of like a a web page where you can look up anything.

    00:01:36

    Xochitl

    You guys don't usually use Google. You might use like uh.

    00:01:40

    Xochitl

    What's the Korean 1 gun?

    00:01:42

    Jack

    There's neighbor and there's Dom. There's a couple of different ones, yeah.

    00:01:43

    Xochitl

    Neighbor. Yeah. And so there's a few different ones.

    00:01:47

    Xochitl

    I know China is the same way. I know a lot of countries are the same way. They have their own search engine, but in the US, Google is the key search engine. So you want to have Google Maps on your phone.

    00:01:57

    Xochitl

    If you don't have an iPhone, if you have an iPhone you want to have Apple maps, that will have everything accurate. You definitely need a maps app on your phone because you're gonna navigate right when you go to the US.

    00:02:12

    Xochitl

    This and those apps, both Google and Apple, can tell you how to get around using public transportation is kind of like local maps in Korea or neighbor maps, so it's really beneficial in those ways. Another thing I would say that you absolutely need is a Facebook, you know that a lot of people don't have Facebook in their home.

    00:02:32

    Xochitl

    Countries don't really use it, but here in.

    00:02:37

    Xochitl

    The US we use Facebook as a primary method of communication. The Messenger app, which is associated with Facebook, is one of the primary ways people message each other and communicate kind of like how other countries use WhatsApp or WeChat. We use Facebook Messenger.

    00:02:55

    Jack

    OK.

    00:02:56

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I would say those are a few big ones that you definitely have to have.

    00:03:00

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:03:01

    Jack

    Now Facebook and Instagram are actually owned by the same company by Facebook, right? Or by? Yeah, I forgot. What's the Facebook's company name? It's it's called meta. Yeah, right. Or meta. Meta. Yeah.

    00:03:06

    Xochitl

    Yeah. Messenger, Facebook, Instagram. They're all owned by.

    00:03:13

    Xochitl

    Nada. Nada. I think. Nada. Nada.

    00:03:18

    Jack

    So if you have an Instagram account or a Facebook account, you can still message people through Instagram or through Facebook, right? As my daughter seen told me, she likes to message message people through.

    00:03:27

    발표자 3

    Hmm.

    00:03:32

    Jack

    Program.

    00:03:33

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it's common to message people through Instagram. Another really common way to message people is on Snapchat. In the US, I've never liked Snapchat. My generation and younger generations really use it a lot to communicate, but I really never could get into it. It's so it's like there's usually little videos and stuff. People send each other.

    00:03:54

    Xochitl

    And stories and like.

    00:03:56

    Xochitl

    It just.

    00:03:58

    Xochitl

    It's always loud. You you never know what? Yeah. You never know what you're going to get in a message. So I.

    00:03:58

    Jack

    Too much?

    00:04:03

    Xochitl

    Just don't like it.

    00:04:05

    Xochitl

    I like just being able to read like a wall of text and then kind of go from there versus having to like, listen to something on a loop a few times.

    00:04:12

    Xochitl

    Or, you know whatever. Yeah.

    00:04:12

    Jack

    Yeah, you just like good old American, old fashioned American Facebook. You know, the boring your aunts and uncles are all on there and you know, it's just, it's the old people app. But I I love it. You know, I it's.

    00:04:18

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:04:27

    Jack

    It's my speed.

    00:04:28

    Jack

    You know, I can handle it, yeah.

    00:04:29

    발표자 3

    Yeah.

    00:04:31

    발표자

    I think a.

    00:04:31

    Xochitl

    Lot of the younger generations still uses Facebook. I had some younger generations from other countries like Canada and stuff don't, and so I had some Canadian friends that were my same age when I was in Korea and I remember they used to make fun of me. Like, what are you, a grandma because you still have Facebook, but a lot of younger people in the US.

    00:04:51

    Xochitl

    Still have Facebook and they use Facebook or Messenger or whatever.

    00:04:55

    Jack

    Yeah, I never saw it as like an old. I mean it. It became an old person's thing. But what it became is like like a like.

    00:05:03

    Jack

    A platform that everyone has, but it's like a boring. Uh, it's like having a telephone in your house. You know, it's like.

    00:05:10

    Xochitl

    Or.

    00:05:10

    Xochitl

    A e-mail.

    00:05:12

    Jack

    It's like a utility, exactly like, uh, like having a yeah. Yeah. It's like I have, of course, I have a Facebook account. It's like I have a phone. I have a Facebook account. I have an e-mail account. Yeah, it it's not cool. I don't, you know, go on there to like, you know, hang out and stuff. But it's a very functional.

    00:05:14

    Xochitl

    Yeah. What do you do there?

    00:05:22

    Xochitl

    I have an e-mail.

    00:05:24

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:05:32

    Jack

    Kind of easy platform to use.

    00:05:35

    Jack

    And so I feel like it's more, it's more of like a utility, you know, just just, just something everyone needs in America.

    00:05:46

    Xochitl

    And everything. A lot of people have is TikTok, people message through TikTok and also it's just a short form video platform and I think it's really useful if you're like in the US you will get content from the US on your TikTok and I think it's helpful because it kind of gives you some cultural.

    00:06:04

    Xochitl

    Insight and and besides that, I think it's really important to use things like Yelp, Google Reviews, Reddit because you can look up recommendations for wherever you are about like what restaurants to eat at and you can.

    00:06:18

    Xochitl

    See how they're.

    00:06:18

    Xochitl

    Reviewed Reddit, you can kind of see what other people suggest. Sometimes there will be subreddits.

    00:06:24

    Xochitl

    For your city that you're living in. So if you're like an exchange student, or if you want to visit a city like let's say you want to plan a trip to Chicago or New York or something, you can check out the subreddit.

    00:06:35

    Xochitl

    It's a way that I planned my trip when I went to Seattle.

    00:06:38

    Xochitl

    Is that I?

    00:06:40

    Xochitl

    Looked up the subreddit and looked up what would you eat if it was your last day?

    00:06:44

    Xochitl

    In Seattle and.

    00:06:45

    Xochitl

    There's a big thread of people writing like what specific place they.

    00:06:49

    Xochitl

    Would go to.

    00:06:49

    Xochitl

    Eat. And so then I made a note of all those places and mapped them out. And so that I could.

    00:06:54

    Xochitl

    Hit them all up in order.

    00:06:56

    Xochitl

    And yeah.

    00:06:57

    Jack

    Was it worth it? But they're good, right?

    00:06:59

    Xochitl

    And they were all good, really.

    00:07:01

    발표자 3

    Hmm.

    00:07:01

    발표자 3

    Like.

    00:07:02

    Jack

    Yeah, people are are pretty passionate. You know about. If if people are pretty passionate about restaurant visit and there's so much so that they will actually post on online about it, you know it's probably good like it's probably good. I was just thinking like we we covered like entertainment like eating and stuff like that.

    00:07:16

    발표자 3

    Yeah.

    00:07:23

    Jack

    And like things to see and things to do, you could go to Reddit or Yelp, you know, to get, you know, ideas of places to go.

    00:07:31

    Jack

    UM navigation using Google Maps will tell you like walk, you know, uh 100 meters and turn right you know so it it gives you very good directions.

    00:07:41

    Jack

    What about safety? Is there any like safety apps or anything like that? So just like things that where you could, do you think that like giving your location is a good idea or is that is that actually?

    00:07:52

    Jack

    Writing danger into your travel situation, I'm kind of conflicted about that.

    00:07:59

    Xochitl

    I think if you have Snapchat, you should turn off your location because anybody that you have added on Snapchat can look at your location and find out exactly where you are at any given moment, which is.

    00:08:10

    Xochitl

    Not a good thing.

    00:08:11

    Jack

    No.

    00:08:12

    Xochitl

    But there are certain apps you can look them up because there's a variety of them that will alert, like an inner circle of people.

    00:08:19

    Xochitl

    About where your location is or you can also share your location on WhatsApp or a couple of other apps like that and on Facebook Messenger. I believe you can also share your location or send your location. I think that it's good.

    00:08:32

    Xochitl

    To have an option to share or send a location with a few close, I would say family or friends or something so someone knows where you're at at all times.

    00:08:39

    Jack

    Yes.

    00:08:42

    Jack

    Absolutely. I think like don't just broadcast it to everybody. You know, the whole, you know, public or whatever, make it public. But if you could give your location to a few close family members, if you can, if you can do that, use that function.

    00:08:58

    Jack

    I think that's a that's a really, really important because you're in a new city, you're you're navigating it. You might be alone, you you may not know exactly the dangers that are lurking, you know, beneath the surface, wherever you may be. So it's good that that people know where you are.

    00:09:19

    Jack

    And so, yeah, I would say that's that's one thing you have to think about too.

    00:09:24

    Jack

    But yeah, there you go.

    00:09:26

    Xochitl

    All right. I think that we've hit up all the major ones and if you have any more travel questions for us or questions about.

    00:09:34

    Xochitl

    Note the US or any comments. Leave them down below at A-Z, englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at at Oz English podcast at.

    00:09:42

    Xochitl

    Gmail.com.

    00:09:43

    Xochitl

    And join the we chat and WhatsApp groups where you can talk to Jack and I directly and ask US direct questions and also Jack and I have started an exclusive episode section for subscribers.

    00:09:55

    Xochitl

    If you guys are interested in donating $1.99 to us, that would be really helpful, because then we can create more content for you guys. We would really appreciate it. So check that out. Talk to you guys next.

    00:10:06

    발표자 3

    Bye bye.


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    E15 - 10m - May 13, 2024
  • Dear Xochitl and Jack | I'm anxious about my accent

    Become a monthly subscriber for just $1.99 per month and receive an additional two to three episodes per week!

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack help out a listener who is anxious about having an accent when speaking English.

    Dear Xochitl and Jack,

    I recently moved to an English-speaking country to pursue my studies, and while I'm confident in my academic English, I find it challenging to engage in casual conversations with native speakers. I often feel self-conscious about my accent and worry that I might not be understood clearly. How can I overcome this fear and improve my spoken English in informal settings?

    Sincerely,

    Accent Anxieties

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:55

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are.

    00:01:03

    Jack

    Doing a dear social and Jack episode where one of our listeners has written or sent us an e-mail.

    00:01:12

    Jack

    With some kind of problem that they need help with and it is something language related and so.

    00:01:18

    Jack

    Uh, and I know I know what you're going to say already, because I've read this before, so I can kind of predict what your answer is going to be social. But I I like I you've said this before and I I like it so much. I I hope you say it again. So here's the here's the letter. Here's Social and Jack.

    00:01:36

    Jack

    I recently moved to an English speaking country to pursue to pursue my studies.

    00:01:43

    Jack

    And while I'm confident in my academic English, I find it challenging to engage in casual conversation with native speakers. I often feel self-conscious about my accent and worry that I might not be understood clearly.

    00:02:01

    Jack

    How can I overcome this fear and improve my spoken English in informal settings? Sincerely.

    00:02:10

    Jack

    Accent anxieties.

    00:02:13

    Xochitl

    Alright, acts and anxiety. Well, I think the fear that you're having is really valid. It's really normal. I think anyone who learns a new language feels this way. I know I certainly did when I moved to Korea. I'm going to tell you.

    00:02:28

    Xochitl

    The way that you're going to see the most improvement.

    00:02:32

    Xochitl

    Is jumping head first just nose diving into that fear?

    00:02:39

    Xochitl

    And trying your hardest anyway. Yes, there will be uncomfortable and awkward moments where people don't understand what you're saying. Yes, sometimes people might correct you, some people might be jerks and make fun of your accents. I had people laugh at me in Korea to my face.

    00:02:55

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it stings a little bit, but how many languages could they speak fluently so you know, most of the time, any. Yeah. Most of the time, people who can speak two languages fluently are not going to be the same people laughing in your face because they can appreciate how difficult it is to learn a second language. And they're going to be respectful.

    00:03:02

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:03:02

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:03:15

    Xochitl

    About it.

    00:03:16

    Jack

    And what? What does your mom say about people that speak two languages?

    00:03:21

    Jack

    Do you remember? Ohh you forgot. Ohh OK. God love. I'll never forget this because your mom, your your mom said like what? The only thing that means is when when you have an accent it just means that you can speak two languages.

    00:03:22

    Xochitl

    I forgot Jack.

    00:03:34

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:03:37

    Xochitl

    Right, right. That's true.

    00:03:38

    Jack

    You know that's, that's all it means. Like if you have an accent and you're speaking English with an accent, it just means you speak multiple languages. You're you're smart, you're, you know, more than the the people you're talking to, you know.

    00:03:46

    Xochitl

    Right. And that's part of.

    00:03:50

    Xochitl

    Right, so don't be ashamed. Just.

    00:03:53

    Xochitl

    Just launch in there and I don't hold back. I know it can be daunting. I know it can be embarrassing, but you'll never learn if you don't try. And I see this with my mom and her sisters. I see that. I think my mom.

    00:04:08

    Xochitl

    All her sisters and her moved to the US around the same time and started learning English around the same time. But my mom? Really.

    00:04:18

    Xochitl

    Kind of launched into using it. She didn't really care what people said. She wasn't embarrassed if people made fun of her accent or said they couldn't understand her. And I think that that's what led her to develop her English the best because she wasn't bothered by the comments or the people making fun of her. And in Korea, it stung me a little when people made fun of my accent.

    00:04:40

    Xochitl

    Laughed at me.

    00:04:43

    Xochitl

    And then I shook it off and I was like, hey, I'm trying my best here so that I have nothing to be embarrassed about. So don't hold back.

    00:04:51

    Jack

    I think it's interesting that you're, you know, of your, your mom and her sisters, not everyone developed at the same rate because I'm assuming, you know, and this is.

    00:05:03

    Jack

    Uh.

    00:05:04

    Jack

    I think this.

    00:05:05

    Jack

    Is a correct assumption.

    00:05:06

    Jack

    It's not. They're all equal, and they're all of equal intelligence. You know? They're, they're all you know, they're, they're they're cognitively very, you know, healthy or whatever. And there there's no, there's no. The issue is not it's not that it's it's an attitude.

    00:05:10

    Xochitl

    Yes. Yeah, I would say yes, yeah.

    00:05:20

    발표자

    Thanks.

    00:05:24

    Jack

    Issue almost. You know what I mean? It's like this. Yeah. Sorry, go ahead.

    00:05:28

    Xochitl

    Oh, go ahead. I was just gonna say her two sisters are are are more shy than she is. And one of them even took formal English lessons far longer than my mom did and got, like, a.

    00:05:42

    Xochitl

    Some kind of I don't want to say in a degree, but she does. She passed some kind of course.

    00:05:48

    발표자

    Hmm.

    00:05:49

    Xochitl

    Still, if you compare her English and my mom's English, my mom's English is far superior, and it really can't come down to my mom uses it every day. My mom incorporates new words every day. My mom isn't, like, scared or shy to engage with people in English, and my mom never says I can't do it. And her two other sisters sometimes have a attitude of like.

    00:06:10

    Xochitl

    Ohh I can. I don't know if I can. They like more. You know, my mom has a very can do attitude. She's very straightforward. Yeah, lady and I really think believing yourself and having that confidence it will lead you to be better in the long run.

    00:06:24

    Jack

    This is gonna sound cheesy and cringy, but my basketball coach had a a.

    00:06:31

    Jack

    An expression of a banner that had this expression up hanging in the gym when I was in high school and he said attitude, not aptitude, determines your altitude. And I always remember that, you know, and I think it's very true.

    00:06:44

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:06:50

    Jack

    And sometimes we think, oh, I'm not smart enough. Ohh, it's I'm not good at languages. I'm not this. I'm not that. It's those are just excuses. It's like what you're really talking about.

    00:07:01

    Jack

    Is fear you're afraid?

    00:07:03

    Jack

    And if you can just put that fear aside and face your fear you, you'd be surprised just what you can accomplish, you know, and I think that we're and that I think that's universally true for everything, not just language learning, but just like learning anything.

    00:07:03

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:07:21

    Jack

    In general is that I think everybody has to start with the kind of incompetent.

    00:07:27

    Jack

    Level. You know when you're first learning a language you're like I'm incompetent, but as you just keep fighting and fighting and fighting and and working hard, you become competent and and it's it's, you know it it it does feel like a.

    00:07:32

    발표자

    Right.

    00:07:43

    Jack

    Sometimes impossible journey I I think learning a language is kind of like climbing.

    00:07:49

    Jack

    I don't know Mount Everest or something. You know? You can't. You can't look at the peak. You can't just be like, hey, I just want to jump up to that peak there and then pop back down. You know, it's like, no, you gotta go to base camp one base camp, two base camp three. You gotta go. You know, you've gotta go through all the stages.

    00:07:52

    발표자

    Right.

    00:08:09

    Jack

    First, before you get to the where you want to be, so I think I think anxiety accent anxieties is just feeling a little bit overwhelmed, but it sounds like he or she is already so far down the road.

    00:08:26

    Jack

    Obviously, don't even think about the accent thing like you're fine.

    00:08:26

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:08:29

    Xochitl

    Right, yeah. Don't be embarrassed. You're already doing really well in academic English, which is one of the hardest things. Pat yourself on the back and don't be afraid to.

    00:08:39

    Xochitl

    You know, just put yourself out there because I guarantee that those students that you're learning with, I mean, you're learning in a foreign language.

    00:08:47

    Xochitl

    So you pat yourself on the back for that because that's something I wouldn't.

    00:08:52

    Xochitl

    Want to do?

    00:08:53

    Jack

    It's like doing it with like two hands tied behind your back, you know?

    00:08:57

    발표자

    Yes.

    00:08:57

    Jack

    It's.

    00:08:57

    Jack

    Like and I'll I'll like, I'll. I'll, I'll tell you what I'm from Minnesota.

    00:08:59

    Xochitl

    It's hard.

    00:09:04

    Jack

    And I didn't even know I had an accent until I moved to California and everybody started making fun of the way that I spoke English. So even as a native speaker, my own accent, I had to change it because I was. So I'm. And now if I had more confidence, if I had had more confidence as a young person.

    00:09:24

    Jack

    I probably would have just kept my accent, but the Midwest accent is very specific as social knows what I'm talking about because she's from the Midwest as well.

    00:09:27

    Xochitl

    Mm-hmm.

    00:09:35

    Jack

    And when I moved to California, I would say really weird things like that. My pronunciation was really strange and people would be like, where are you from? Are you from, you know, are you from Minnesota? Are you from Wisconsin or something? And and I I thought I was saying it normally, you know. And then I I realized that I wasn't. And so I even worked on my own.

    00:09:58

    Jack

    Accent as a you know, as an American to have a more kind of generic American accent. So this is, you know, don't don't worry about it, you'll be fine.

    00:10:09

    Xochitl

    Yeah. Don't sweat yourself. You'll be OK anyway, if you have any questions, make sure you leave them down below or any comments at A-Z. Englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at AZ englishpodcast@gmail.com and make sure make sure to join who we chat and WhatsApp Group so you can talk to Jack Knight directly. We'll see you guys next.

    00:10:27

    Xochitl

    Time. Bye bye.

    00:10:28

    Jack

    Bye bye.


    Podcast Website:

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    E32 - 11m - May 12, 2024
  • Vocabulary Spotlight | Out of the blue, Take it with a grain of salt, and Give it a shot

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack discuss the following three idiomatic expressions:


    Out of the blue:

    Definition: Unexpectedly or without warning; something happening suddenly and unexpectedly.

    Example: "I hadn't spoken to my old friend in years, but then out of the blue, she sent me an email asking how I was doing."


    Take it with a grain of salt:

    Definition: To be skeptical about something; not to completely believe or trust something.

    Example: "The tabloids reported that the celebrity was getting married again, but we should take it with a grain of salt until we hear it from a reliable source."


    Give it a shot:

    Definition: To attempt or try something; to give something a try, especially when facing uncertainty or difficulty.

    Example: "I've never played golf before, but I'm willing to give it a shot and see how it goes."


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    E21 - 9m - May 12, 2024
  • Topic Talk | Five reasons why you're never too old to learn a new language

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about why it's still important for adults to learn a new language.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:56

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are doing a topic talk and the topic of today's conversation is why you are never too old to learn a language and such a I just went online and did a little bit of research.

    00:01:18

    Jack

    And I found five pretty interesting reasons why you're never too old to learn a language, and the first one is about near neuroplasticity.

    00:01:29

    Xochitl

    Oh, interesting.

    00:01:30

    Jack

    And so yeah, and it's it's it says here while it's true that children often have an easier time picking up languages due to their brains, high level of neuroplasticity, which means ability to adapt and change, adults can still learn new languages.

    00:01:50

    Jack

    Effectively, research has shown that the adult brain remains capable of forming new neural connections.

    00:01:58

    Jack

    Actions and adapting to new linguistic challenges, albeit at a different pace than children, so it's not like we have zero ability to learn a language and and build new neural pathways, but it's not the same as when we're like in the the critical age when you know.

    00:02:18

    Jack

    Whatever that might be, five to three years old.

    00:02:21

    Jack

    You know, I don't know. Thirteen years old or whatever, so yeah.

    00:02:25

    발표자

    Right, right.

    00:02:26

    Xochitl

    Yeah. OK. I think that's very interesting. I've heard before on theories that if you learn two or more languages as a balanced bilingual from childhood that you're also more able to pick up new languages. But even if you hadn't, even if you are monolingual.

    00:02:44

    Xochitl

    And you never learned more than one language growing up. I think research shows that adults, it's it's beginning to show at an increasing weight that adults still retain quite a bit of neuroplasticity. Right, so I think.

    00:03:02

    Xochitl

    Yeah, that just gives you every more reason to have faith that you can learn another language and a lot of the world has light up on us because they have learned two or more languages.

    00:03:15

    Xochitl

    From a young age so.

    00:03:17

    Jack

    Yeah. And this one kind of dovetails nicely. It connects with the one later, which is cognitive benefits. You know, like the like, holding off dementia and stuff like that is creating new neural pathways in your brain, you know, so neurons are making new connections.

    00:03:28

    발표자

    Yep.

    00:03:36

    Jack

    This is a good thing, like it's a it's a good practice. It's like exercise for your brain, you know, it's like working out your brain. So yeah, definitely a good thing. And I also I wanted to say one more thing about what you said about bilingual children.

    00:03:44

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:03:56

    Jack

    Cause my daughter is a a balanced bilingual just like you.

    00:04:00

    Jack

    Bar and I think there's something that children learn early that that we don't, that I didn't learn till I was older and that is that language is arbitrary and what arbitrary means is there's no reason for anything to be called anything like trees.

    00:04:20

    Jack

    Just the sound that we decided as English speakers to mean tree.

    00:04:23

    발표자

    This can happen.

    00:04:27

    Jack

    But it means nothing to Spanish speaker, you know.

    00:04:27

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:04:31

    Xochitl

    It might even mean something else, like if a one word might mean something completely different in another language.

    00:04:37

    Jack

    Exactly, exactly. Those are called false cognates. I believe you know when they they don't line, they sound the same, but they're totally unrelated.

    00:04:47

    Jack

    UM, and I think that, uh, you learned, you know, when you were young, you're like ohh table is table and table is also the Spanish word for table is Mesa.

    00:04:58

    Jack

    If I'm not mistaken.

    00:04:59

    Jack

    Yeah. So you've got you've got 2 words and you're like, oh, OK, so things can have multiple names depending on their.

    00:05:06

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:05:07

    Jack

    Cultural significance.

    00:05:09

    Jack

    And you learned that just probably before you even knew you learned it. You you knew that. And my daughter.

    00:05:14

    Xochitl

    Right. That was a fact of life, basically. Like, you don't really think that too much.

    00:05:17

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:05:19

    Jack

    Yeah. And in my little tiny English speaking world, where I'm a monolingual person, I probably was like, you know, a teenager when I had that epiphany. And I'm like, ohh you, the world is not all table is not just the universal term for, you know table it was it was always it's always been a table since the beginning of time.

    00:05:35

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:05:39

    Jack

    You know, so you you just don't. You don't get that epiphany that that realization until until.

    00:05:40

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:05:48

    Jack

    Number two, life experience, this one. I'll just read the first sentence. Adults bring a wealth of life experience to the language learning process. So how? What do you think about that? Like, just like life experience.

    00:06:03

    Xochitl

    I think life experience can help you in any way, because if you already have practice studying other things like in university or high school, then you probably already know how to study.

    00:06:16

    Xochitl

    Me and that helps a lot. Like you gave a tip in an earlier episode about writing things down and how that helps retain information and for example, things like flash cards. You'll have all those tools at your disposal and you'll be way more organized. So I think that will definitely help. And it's also something to look forward to in the sense that it'll open your life experiences.

    00:06:37

    Xochitl

    Too.

    00:06:38

    Xochitl

    Like you'll have way more experiences and be able to appreciate cultures at a different level. If you speak another language fluently.

    00:06:47

    Jack

    I I see it as like this, like beautiful secret skeleton key to an entire entirely new world. Like you. You put it in. You open that door and it's like the Wizard of Oz. Like you walking into another world that you can understand.

    00:06:57

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:07:07

    Jack

    You know, without that, without the language, you're missing just so much. It's so it's so it's so dull and and dreary and and you you can't really appreciate.

    00:07:19

    Jack

    I'm speaking no, you go ahead. You go ahead.

    00:07:20

    Xochitl

    It's like an.

    00:07:20

    Xochitl

    Apple, sorry, good.

    00:07:23

    Xochitl

    I'm just gonna say it's like when you go to the grocery store in the US, there's like a wax cap on the apples. Like there's a thin wax on it, and then you can wash it in hot water and melt it away. And the apple tastes way better. That's like the language. Like, you can see the culture and appreciate it to some extent. But that whole flavorful life of a culture that you can appreciate with language is locked away.

    00:07:45

    Xochitl

    Underneath that wax.

    00:07:46

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:07:47

    Jack

    That's that's exactly right. There you go. Perfect metaphor. So yeah, life experience, learning a language #3 diverse learning resources. So access to information and knowledge that you might not have had available to you in.

    00:08:07

    Jack

    Without being able to speak that second language, that new language.

    00:08:11

    Xochitl

    Yeah, yeah, I definitely agree. That's another thing I see a lot with, like migrants or actually I see it a lot with my family.

    00:08:20

    Xochitl

    They my mom speaks good English. My aunts, English is is kind of mediocre and she struggles with. It's like a whole world in the US that's locked away from her as far as the resources and being able to navigate certain things on her own because her English lacks.

    00:08:39

    Xochitl

    And so.

    00:08:41

    Xochitl

    That's not really her fault. It's very hard to work a full time job and learn a new language when you move to a new country at the same time, I really struggle with that.

    00:08:48

    Jack

    Sure.

    00:08:49

    Xochitl

    In Korea, you.

    00:08:50

    Xochitl

    Know, but again, it does really hinder you from being able to navigate things independently. The way that you would in your home country.

    00:09:00

    Jack

    Now you gave us some really good examples a while back in in older in older episodes about like remedies.

    00:09:09

    발표자

    This.

    00:09:10

    Jack

    Your mom has these, like, certain remedies from her region of Mexico where she grew up and like, there would be no without without your momma's. You know, as a, as a gateway to that information and your mom and your and your grandparents.

    00:09:30

    Jack

    That information, that knowledge.

    00:09:31

    Jack

    Would be totally locked away from.

    00:09:33

    Jack

    You, you know, and you said like ohh, when you have a stomach ache, your mom would make a certain herbal potion, you know, kind of.

    00:09:34

    발표자

    Right.

    00:09:43

    Jack

    Thing or whatever.

    00:09:43

    Xochitl

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:09:44

    Jack

    Sorry, potion sounds more magical, but it's not feature. Yeah, something like that. Yeah, and I think that that wisdom, there's, like a lot of wisdom that is locked into language.

    00:09:46

    Xochitl

    No, you're fine with the concoction. Uh. A mixture. Yeah, yeah.

    00:09:58

    Jack

    And and without it you there's just no way you you have access to any of those things so.

    00:09:58

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:10:04

    Jack

    So yeah, that's that's a beautiful aspect of the of learning another language #4 we touched on already, but the cognitive benefits in adults, there's reducing the risk of developing dementia or delaying the onset of dementia is is is a.

    00:10:25

    Jack

    Is a benefit of learning a second law.

    00:10:28

    Jack

    Which so yeah. So I mean, even if you're just looking, it's it's almost like to me, like, you know, if you're like, oh, I gotta hit the gym, I better. I better do, like P90X or something like that. It's like, well, I gotta hit the mental gym. I'm going to learn Spanish. I'm going to learn French.

    00:10:29

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:10:29

    Xochitl

    You work.

    00:10:46

    Xochitl

    Right can do some verb conjugation, yeah.

    00:10:50

    Jack

    Yeah, exactly.

    00:10:52

    Jack

    Those are your push-ups, you know, for everything. Yeah. Yeah. Your pull-ups are your, you know, the grammar, your verb tenses or whatever, you know. But yeah, I. So I think for cognitive benefits, definitely it's worth it. And the last one is cultural enrichment. Learning a new language opens the door.

    00:11:12

    Jack

    To experience an.

    00:11:14

    Jack

    Experiencing and understanding different cultures more deeply and so.

    00:11:19

    Jack

    Would you agree with?

    00:11:20

    Jack

    That I think you've already touched on that before.

    00:11:21

    Xochitl

    Yeah, we have touched on that and I would agree. And as you said about like for example, the whole herbal medicinal part, if I didn't speak any Spanish, I would be completely locked out of that or, for example, my boyfriend speaks Zapotec, he would like, I wouldn't have been able to talk with my grandparents and learn all their wisdom if I didn't speak Spanish, he wouldn't have been able to talk with his grandparents if he didn't speak Salpa tech.

    00:11:44

    Xochitl

    And so it's like a whole other world that you would have been completely excluded from in a way. And I do see the effect.

    00:11:53

    Xochitl

    Of like Latinos that grew up in the US that don't speak Spanish or don't speak some kind of language that connects them to the culture because really we're we're an indigenous culture as well they have.

    00:12:06

    Xochitl

    It's just there's like a wall there. So that's why I think, yeah, I agree, there's a lot of culture locked into language.

    00:12:13

    Jack

    Absolutely, absolutely. It's where the wisdom is locked in the language. I I think you can try to explain to the, you know, you could try to explain some of these things in English, but they're going to lose. You're going to lose a lot in the translation.

    00:12:30

    Jack

    And so you know, getting it in from the original source is really important. All right, that's our. Those are our five, yeah.

    00:12:40

    Xochitl

    All right, listener as well. If you enjoyed that, make sure we do comment down below at A-Z newspodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at at ozenglishpodcast@gmail.com and join our WeChat and WhatsApp groups in order to join the conversation and we'll see you next time. Bye bye.


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    E24 - 13m - May 9, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVECulture Corner | Markets

    In this exclusive episode of the A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about outdoor markets in each of their countries.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:55

    Jack

    Welcome to the Adas English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are in the culture corner and we are talking about markets and social, having lived in both Mexico and the United States and Korea. And I think those are the three big ones, right?

    00:01:17

    Xochitl

    Yes, yes.

    00:01:17

    Jack

    OK. What do you think about market culture? Like what, which which country strikes you as the most?

    00:01:27

    Jack

    With the most having the most vibrant markets where you get to like, you know, bargain and bar, you know, barter, not barter, but bargain and negotiate and things like that.

    00:01:39

    Xochitl

    I think Mexico by far of those three countries that I've lived in, because I went to the market, but this is also because I speak the language like fluently. And I went to the market in Korea and I felt very intimidated. But the market in Korea didn't strike me as.

    00:01:56

    Xochitl

    Dramatically cheaper than the supermarket.

    00:01:59

    Jack

    Hmm.

    00:01:59

    Xochitl

    UM, I know a lot of people say it is, but it didn't really strike me as being dramatically cheap and there's a lot of stuff that I didn't even know, like what it was or how to prepare it. So I was kind of like scared, you know.

    00:02:10

    Jack

    With vegetables like in in the Korean market, you could get like a dollar or two off, but it's not. You're not.

    00:02:15

    Jack

    Going to get like a huge discount.

    00:02:18

    Xochitl

    Dirt cheap, like vegetables or anything. Yeah, be kind of similar, but groceries are just pretty expensive in Korea anyway, so I think that's kind of why.

    00:02:20

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:02:29

    Xochitl

    And I didn't. I didn't speak fluently enough like to the point I was kind of scared to like, miss, say something. That's a big reason why it's so important to learn another language because.

    00:02:41

    Xochitl

    I just didn't feel confident, especially being alone. I was like and and I would see like.

    00:02:46

    Xochitl

    Fish and stuff, there's.

    00:02:47

    Xochitl

    These long, long, like skinny silver fish that they sell at the market.

    00:02:53

    Xochitl

    You know, I'm talking about. I don't even know what it is. I don't know how to prepare it at.

    00:02:54

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:02:57

    Xochitl

    All so like.

    00:02:59

    Xochitl

    I just didn't know. You know what to do, but.

    00:03:02

    Jack

    I forgot what the name of it is, but they're, you know, you gotta be careful because some are really nice, you know, but it's better when they prepare it for you and then you just bring it home like you let them cook it.

    00:03:10

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:03:11

    Xochitl

    For you. Yeah, right. And like the side dishes or whatever. But I found side dishes to be like, expensive as well. Like, I bought like, some an egg side dish for, like, 4 bucks. But it was a really small.

    00:03:22

    Xochitl

    Portion and I was like it just it's more expensive, Korea and the groceries are in general are are quite a bit expensive. And then I I feel like.

    00:03:31

    Xochitl

    Like.

    00:03:32

    Xochitl

    The market is cheaper and more authentic than the supermarket in Korea still, but in the US it's like.

    00:03:38

    Jack

    Hmm.

    00:03:41

    Xochitl

    The market is like a luxury experience. Am I wrong? It's like it's like you're gonna find it cheaper at Walmart than you will at a farmers market at this point.

    00:03:51

    Jack

    You know I've.

    00:03:52

    Jack

    I have no experience at a farmers market. I've never been to 1.

    00:03:56

    Xochitl

    It's all artisanal hipster stuff now, basically, and it's expensive. Like everything is expensive and because it's all locally produced and locally owned, and a lot of it is organic and whatever, handmade.

    00:04:11

    Xochitl

    It's just quite expensive whereas.

    00:04:14

    Jack

    It's like premium they. They're saying it's since we don't put any chemicals on this, this is we're going to charge you a premium, whereas in most other countries they would be appalled by that because it would be like this is this you're skipping the middleman here, you know the the person that's in between the distributor or whatever.

    00:04:16

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:04:30

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:04:34

    Jack

    Who's buying the the the groceries or the the foodstuffs and then selling it to the the supermarket? You you're cutting it out, you're going straight from the farmer to the customer, and yet they're charging you a premium.

    00:04:48

    Jack

    Them based on the fact that they grew it organically, but I don't know like are they being greedy or is it just like that's what it cost to?

    00:04:54

    발표자

    Wait.

    00:04:58

    Xochitl

    It's just like the cost of doing business now or I don't know, but it it is quite expensive. Everything is just the, but you're just gonna get it cheaper at the supermarket in the US and so like, yeah. And so in the US, anything that's like owned by a big corporation like Walmart.

    00:05:15

    Xochitl

    Or target or whatever is going to be cheaper than going to a locally owned store like a small business and that's why it's so hard to support small business in the US versus I feel like in Korea or Mexico you can still get things cheaper from small businesses. And so in Mexico, it's a very vibrant culture and the market is way cheaper.

    00:05:35

    Xochitl

    And the supermarket.

    00:05:36

    Xochitl

    For most things.

    00:05:37

    Jack

    Yeah. And I would say in America, we just generally speaking, we don't have a market culture like it's just it's it's gone, everything is super chains, super stores, supermarkets. I mean that's that's it, you know, for the most part you will find the farmers market here and there, but they're more of a kind of luxury.

    00:05:44

    Xochitl

    No, we don't.

    00:05:51

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:05:58

    Jack

    The middle class, kind of like Saturday afternoon. Let's go to the.

    00:05:59

    Xochitl

    Niche.

    00:06:03

    Xochitl

    Yeah, like an upper middle class Saturday afternoon thing. Yeah, any.

    00:06:06

    Jack

    Right, right. It's just not a regular person's, you know, place to go, you know.

    00:06:12

    Xochitl

    No. It's like for people that have time and have money to go grocery shopping and not like and throw five things in your cart real quick. That's Walmart. So yeah, we just don't have the same culture versus in Mexico. You really can't get a discount. You can also find certain things that are you can find a lot of produce that's a lot fresher at the market than the supermarket.

    00:06:16

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah, yeah.

    00:06:32

    Xochitl

    You can find a lot of organic produce and chicken and beef, and it's a lot more flavor.

    00:06:36

    Xochitl

    Cool.

    00:06:37

    Xochitl

    Than it is at the supermarket. You can get really good product and for a cheaper price than you would at the supermarket. And you can also get like shoes and clothes. I mean, I just went. I'm in Mexico City right now. So I went to the tangis, which is like a daily well, it's like a weekly market. So they put it up Saturdays.

    00:06:58

    Xochitl

    UM in the area that I'm in. And so there are vendors from all over that come to sell like clothing.

    00:07:05

    Xochitl

    Or like fruit food, prepared food like drinks, all kinds of stuff you can eat there and shop there. And it's a lot of fun because it's very vibrant and it's cheap. So you should actually enjoy it, yeah.

    00:07:22

    Jack

    Well, The funny thing is that I I I draw a lot of parallels between Mexican culture and Thai culture. I mean, I know that there's there is a weird connection there because, like spicy food, wonderful cuisine.

    00:07:28

    Xochitl

    Yes, yes, yes.

    00:07:36

    Xochitl

    Loud hot market like.

    00:07:37

    Jack

    About hot markets weekend markets, it's a market.

    00:07:41

    Jack

    Culture and in Thailand, if you can speak the language, even just a little bit, if you learn the numbers and you learn some of the expressions like oh, that's expensive, I want it cheaper. They will. The price will drop like like 50 percent. 75% because they're just going to start. They're starting it in a egregiously high number, like a ridiculously high.

    00:07:57

    Xochitl

    Right, yes.

    00:08:03

    Jack

    Number and then these foreign people will come and go like, well, let me calculate euros to that. Well, it's only $12.00 that's not that expensive, but $12.00 for this in Thailand is like yeah, $1,000,000 like it's crazy.

    00:08:13

    Xochitl

    Cheap actually.

    00:08:20

    Xochitl

    Right. They're like ripping you off, basically.

    00:08:22

    Jack

    Yeah, they're ripping you off. And these stupid, stupid, ignorant foreigners will come in and pay these high prices. So when they see that you're a foreigner, they're gonna start you with this crazy offer. And if you're, if you're savvy enough, if you live there long enough.

    00:08:37

    Jack

    And know some of the language you know, like that's. That's ridiculous. That's too expensive. And then you put the number. There's always a calculator. So you type in the number that you want to pay and then they go well, that's way too low. And then you they type their number and then you.

    00:08:52

    Jack

    Negotiate and that's very.

    00:08:54

    Jack

    Hard for Americans to do, I find because we're.

    00:08:56

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:08:57

    Xochitl

    So embarrassed.

    00:08:58

    Jack

    We're so embarrassed to negotiate. We feel like just awful people for.

    00:09:02

    Jack

    You know.

    00:09:03

    Xochitl

    To yeah. Bring a price down. I think it really depends what part of Mexico you're in as well, because here in Mexico City and also in back in the day, the culture was more about haggling, which is a phrase that we use for making the price cheaper, right, like negotiating a price. But now.

    00:09:03

    Jack

    Not.

    00:09:23

    Xochitl

    And wahaca, which is the South, it's like seen in poor taste to haggle. But here in Mexico City, you can definitely still haggle and also things are really cheap here compared to what I just found out. It's like crazy. How cheap. I think I got.

    00:09:36

    Xochitl

    But four avocados for like a dollar or like $1.50? And then.

    00:09:45

    Jack

    You and I gotta. We gotta start a new avocado company here. You gotta start sending those to Korea and I'll sell them. I'll sell for 10 bucks for one, you know.

    00:09:52

    Xochitl

    I was like.

    00:09:54

    Xochitl

    I know it's crazy. And then like in wahaca, it's like.

    00:09:58

    Xochitl

    Uh, 2 bucks for like a buck each basically, but you have like, $0.25 per avocado almost or $0.30 per avocado here in Mexico City. And that's the same with everything. Umm, this lady got three big fish to take home and it was only like 10 bucks. Probably. And I got 6 fish fillet.

    00:10:16

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:10:19

    Xochitl

    For 10 bucks. So it's, it's just so much cheaper and then we'll have to.

    00:10:24

    Jack

    Well, there's more competition. You know, it's like you got more vendors all fighting over, you know, business and they're willing to take a lower price so.

    00:10:34

    Jack

    That's Thailand. You know, just everyone's fighting with everyone else, each vendor. So they're just like, you know, who they'll go bargain basement prices if you, if you. If you're just smart enough to to, to walk away, you know, because you.

    00:10:42

    Xochitl

    Red.

    00:10:48

    Xochitl

    And I find.

    00:10:50

    Xochitl

    Ohh sorry go ahead. I was just gonna say find soul is more like Seoul. Korea is more busy like that but like.

    00:10:50

    Jack

    No, no.

    00:10:56

    Xochitl

    Where I was in Ulsan. It's like, way more chill. I think in the in the market there's not a lot going on. It was pretty quiet and like in Mexico, it's like you need to watch where you're going and then like, yeah, I think it probably the same.

    00:11:01

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:11:10

    Xochitl

    In Thailand, because you.

    00:11:11

    Jack

    New wallet will get snatched.

    00:11:12

    Xochitl

    Could easily like into of of that of. Oh yeah, someone could ****** your money, but you can also just walk.

    00:11:18

    Xochitl

    Right into a VAT of boiling oil that someone's like cooking pork rinds in the street, like all that kind of stuff, you could just burn yourself on a.

    00:11:22

    Jack

    Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

    00:11:23

    Jack

    Yeah, you gotta be safe.

    00:11:27

    Jack

    That's why I love the markets, though the danger, you know, like the.

    00:11:29

    Xochitl

    I know the risk. It's like, oh, I went out for my Sunday shopping to hear some hot coals right next to me, like on fire. So yeah, it's so I think that's a really interesting part of the culture. I think Americans were not used to these. Our streets are so sanitized and so carefully curated because you, like, Sue the city or sue people if you garden.

    00:11:48

    Jack

    Yeah, well, you spilled a little bit of oil on my arm and.

    00:11:49

    Xochitl

    Your solver fall into the hole.

    00:11:53

    Jack

    Give me $1,000,000.

    00:11:55

    Xochitl

    Yeah. So yeah, because it's not quite as common here. There's a lot of the situation like it's just not as sanitized. It's not as clean cut. So there's just a lot.

    00:12:05

    Xochitl

    More action going on, yeah.

    00:12:06

    Jack

    And I find in Korea. Oh, sorry. I'll just add one last thing is if I don't if I do.

    00:12:10

    발표자

    Yes.

    00:12:13

    Jack

    Walk away. They don't chase after me like they did in time. What about in Mexico? Will they? Will they come after you? If.

    00:12:16

    Xochitl

    No, they don't care. Yeah.

    00:12:20

    Jack

    You if you walk away.

    00:12:22

    Xochitl

    How come they really don't? Well, so they really don't. In Mexico City, they do the wait. Wait, I we can talk prices.

    00:12:30

    Jack

    OK. OK, let's feel like, wait, wait, wait, wait. OK, let's talk. Let's talk about conversation. Yeah.

    00:12:35

    Xochitl

    Calm down, we.

    00:12:37

    Xochitl

    We can fix the place. You'll find something you like. You know? So. Yeah. So I can I do find that a lot? Anyways, I'm very curious to know what it's like in your countries. Do you guys haggle? Which again means negotiating prices?

    00:12:53

    Xochitl

    Is the market loud and hot? Is it lively? Is it more quiet? Do you usually go to the market or do you usually go to the supermarket to do your groceries? Leave us a comment down below at 8 is englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at A-Z, englishpodcast@gmail.com or join our we chat? What's up groups to join the conversation and we'll see.

    00:13:11

    Xochitl

    You guys, next time. Bye bye.


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    E14 - 13m - May 8, 2024
  • Vocabulary Spotlight | Fillers

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack talk about fillers English speakers often use.


    English language fillers are words or phrases that people use in speech to fill pauses or gaps in conversation. Here are some common ones:


    Um / Uh: Used to indicate hesitation or to fill a pause while thinking.

    Well: Often used to introduce a statement, express agreement, or to indicate that you're considering something.

    So: Frequently used to transition between topics or to start a new thought.

    You know: Used to seek validation from the listener or to emphasize a point.

    Like: Often used as a filler word, especially among younger speakers, to pause or emphasize a point.

    I mean: Used to clarify or rephrase a statement.

    Actually: Used to add emphasis or correction to a statement.

    Basically: Often used to simplify or summarize a complex idea.

    Well, you see: Used to begin an explanation or to introduce reasoning.

    In a way / In a sense: Used to qualify or add nuance to a statement.


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    E20 - 11m - May 7, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVEDear Xochitl and Jack | Lost in Idioms

    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack give some advice to a listener who is struggling with idioms.

    Transcript:

    00:00:00

    Jack

    Hey A-Z listeners, this is Jack here.

    00:00:03

    Jack

    And if you would like to become a an exclusive subscriber to the show, you can hit the link in the description and that will take you to our Red Circle page, where for $1.99 a month you will get access to an extra two or three episodes each week.

    00:00:23

    Jack

    And be careful, don't hit that donation button if you want to become an exclusive subscriber because the donation button is just a one time donation. However, the exclusive subscriber button will give you access to the extra two or three episodes.

    00:00:42

    Jack

    Each week.

    00:00:44

    Jack

    So make sure you hit that exclusive subscriber button if you want access to the extra episodes.

    00:00:52

    Jack

    Now let's get on with the show.

    00:00:55

    Jack

    Welcome to the ADOC English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social and today we have a dear social and Jack episode and this is where listeners of the program will write in with their ESL problems. Usually it's not like their life problems because.

    00:01:16

    Jack

    You know, goodness. Enormous, yeah.

    00:01:18

    Xochitl

    No different though. Why am I the judge? We we will bring that back. If you guys want it on.

    00:01:23

    Xochitl

    Popular demands, though.

    00:01:24

    Jack

    That's true. Yeah, we will. We might have an I am I the jerk coming down the pipeline here pretty soon, but OK, so dear social and Jack, I have been learning English for a few months now. And while I have made progress, I still struggle with understanding.

    00:01:43

    Jack

    Idiomatic expressions.

    00:01:46

    Xochitl

    Mm-hmm.

    00:01:46

    Jack

    It seems like native speakers use them all the time, and I often find myself feeling lost in conversations.

    00:01:55

    Jack

    How can I improve my understanding of idioms?

    00:01:59

    Jack

    And use them appropriately in my own speech.

    00:02:04

    Jack

    It's frustrating, feeling like I'm missing out on important nuances in communication sincerely lost in idioms.

    00:02:17

    Xochitl

    OK, lost and idioms. I have a I have a couple of suggestions. I think one of them is that there are books like of idioms where they just list them out like a dictionary almost, but it's commonly used idioms with the definition where it breaks it down in plain simple English. And if you don't have the money or don't want to spend the money.

    00:02:37

    Xochitl

    In a book you can also look up a similar thing on Google, and they're usually like 20 or 25 idioms per page, and it'll break them down in really simple English, and that's usually free.

    00:02:50

    Xochitl

    U.

    00:02:50

    Xochitl

    M.

    00:02:51

    Xochitl

    Another thing I can suggest are YouTube videos. You can watch people who explain idioms. We have some podcasts as well here at A-Z where we talk about idioms in depth and we're going to have a we're going to add a listening comprehension panel to our exclusive episodes where we.

    00:03:12

    Xochitl

    Have a conversation using idioms and using plain typical English and then listeners can strengthen their listening skills that way.

    00:03:23

    Xochitl

    And and I guess finally I would say practice makes perfect. Try using some idioms yourself. Try listening to some music, reading literature, watching shows in English, and don't be afraid to pause when you hear them use an idiom and just Google it. We have Google at our fingertips these days that makes things a lot easier.

    00:03:45

    Xochitl

    UM, so don't be afraid to use those tools to your advantage. Yeah. What do you think, Jack?

    00:03:51

    Jack

    Yeah, I think first.

    00:03:52

    Jack

    First and foremost, I want to kind of, UM, separate the meaning of like expression versus idiom. And I think like in expression in English is when it is logically decipherable and what I mean by that is that like.

    00:04:12

    Jack

    If you think about it, you can understand the meaning. So for example, if I said to social I have a speech tomorrow, I have butterflies in my stomach.

    00:04:23

    Jack

    UM, the idea of like butterflies flapping their wings in my stomach. Kind of.

    00:04:32

    Jack

    Evokes a sort of like feeling of nervousness. Right? Like, yeah, so that would be more on the expression side of of things like. Like you can understand what that means just by thinking about it.

    00:04:34

    Xochitl

    Image.

    00:04:48

    Jack

    Other idioms are completely disconnected from any logic or reason you know. If I say kick the bucket social knows, then I mean die. But a non-native speaker would be like what does kicking in a bucket have anything to do with death?

    00:05:08

    Xochitl

    Right, right.

    00:05:08

    Jack

    You know, it's it's totally disconnected and I think what you're talking about, uh writer is.

    00:05:16

    Jack

    The idioms, not the expressions, because the expressions and I what I would do is, I would try to figure them out in context because the only way to learn them is in context. If you try to just memorize a list of of idioms, it might help you, but I would say there's so many.

    00:05:36

    Jack

    You're gonna. It'll take you a year just to get through the.

    00:05:37

    Xochitl

    Yes.

    00:05:39

    Jack

    A's.

    00:05:40

    Xochitl

    Right, right. Yeah.

    00:05:41

    Jack

    And then the next year, you're gonna go through the B's and then the C's, and then you're gonna forget the A's. A better way, maybe, is to try to try to understand them in context.

    00:05:50

    Jack

    Next, and what what I've the people who are successful in learning languages at a high level.

    00:05:58

    Jack

    And uh, who aren't balanced. Bilinguals like social grew up hearing a lot of Mexican, sorry, Spanish idioms. And because she comes from a Mexican family and mixed family.

    00:06:11

    Jack

    And so you also grew up hearing American English expressions. And so you, you're familiar with those since childhood for those who are starting, you have the upper hand there. But if you're just learning, you're learning idioms as an adult. What I would do is I would really have a notebook, and when you.

    00:06:16

    발표자

    Right.

    00:06:20

    Xochitl

    They have an upper hand beard.

    00:06:31

    Jack

    Come across one that you don't know the meaning of. I would ask the person what does that mean? And then I would as soon as I I can. I would get my journal and put it. Put that entry and write it down because there's something about writing something. When you write something down.

    00:06:47

    Jack

    When you remember it, you retain it much more deeply than if you just try to just hold it in your in your memory. Yeah. And so then you'll have your whole little journal of idioms, your idiom journal, the ones that you come across.

    00:06:48

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:06:59

    Xochitl

    Great. Great.

    00:07:08

    Jack

    That's one strategy that I think will works really well. And if you're if you're lazy like me, do it in a voice note like picture record, write it down, you know, say it into your your phone so that you have it recorded and then write it down. Listen and write it down.

    00:07:15

    발표자

    Yeah.

    00:07:24

    Jack

    Here.

    00:07:25

    Xochitl

    That's yeah.

    00:07:26

    Jack

    Yeah. And I think that that is because that's the only way to learn idioms is in context. If you try to learn them isolated away from meanings in regular, like regular conversation, I think it's going to be more difficult, but.

    00:07:33

    발표자

    Mean.

    00:07:43

    Xochitl

    It could be a warning for sure.

    00:07:44

    Jack

    Yeah, but if you listen to our podcast, we always give examples of the idioms you know, in context. And so you can find the context. But I think, you know, if you're talking about daily life, somebody says something and you're like I have. You know, you're like.

    00:08:00

    Jack

    My my horse kicked the bucket last night. And you're like.

    00:08:06

    Jack

    What? What's the big deal? If your horse kicked the bucket? Yeah, that's not a bad thing. And you're like, no, it's a very bad thing. My horse died, you know? Yeah.

    00:08:08

    Xochitl

    But.

    00:08:10

    발표자

    Right.

    00:08:15

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:08:17

    Jack

    So yeah, that was my long answer. Yeah.

    00:08:21

    Xochitl

    Yeah. No, no, I think it was a great answer because it definitely whenever there's a dilemma about language learning, it requires a lot of thought to think about how you can apply into your life. But I think Jack did a great job. So if you guys want more tips, make sure to follow our podcast. Leave a comment down below at A-Z.

    00:08:37

    Xochitl

    Which code?

    00:08:38

    Xochitl

    Dot com shoot us an e-mail we love to receive listener emails. We really do. I love the dear social and Jack. Whenever you guys ask us ESL questions or any kind of questions, those are what some of the episodes I most look forward to recording. So don't be shy. Shoot us an e-mail at at ozenglishpodcast@gmail.com.

    00:08:58

    Xochitl

    And make sure you join the WeChat and WhatsApp group. Uh to talk to us directly. And if you have any questions, you can also send them in the WeChat or WhatsApp groups and Jack and I will make note of them so we can address them in.

    00:09:07

    Xochitl

    The podcast see you guys. Next time. Bye bye.


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    E31 - 9m - May 6, 2024
  • Grammar Zone | Push around, Push for, and Push through

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack explain the meanings of several phrasal verbs using the verb "push."


    Push around: This phrasal verb means to treat someone in a bossy or unfair manner, often by using one's authority or physical strength. For example:

    "The new manager likes to push around junior staff members to assert her authority."

    "Don't let him push you around like that; stand up for yourself!"

    Push for: This phrasal verb means to advocate for or strongly support something, often in a determined or persistent manner. For example:

    "The environmental activists are pushing for stricter regulations on pollution."

    "The union is pushing for better working conditions for its members."

    Push through: This phrasal verb means to overcome obstacles or resistance in order to achieve something, often by using determination or force. For example:

    "Despite facing numerous challenges, she managed to push through and complete her project on time."

    "We need to push through these difficult times together and come out stronger on the other side."


    Podcast Website:

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    E9 - 12m - May 6, 2024
  • Vocabulary Spotlight | Expressions using the word "dead"

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack explain the meanings of several expressions which use the word "dead."

    Dead on: This phrase means exactly accurate or precise. For example:

    "You were dead on with your prediction about the outcome of the game."

    "Her aim was dead on, hitting the target every time."

    Dead to rights: This expression refers to being caught red-handed or being unmistakably guilty of something. For example:

    "The thief was caught dead to rights with the stolen goods in his possession."

    "She was caught cheating on the exam, caught dead to rights by the teacher."

    Dead as a doornail: This phrase is used to emphasize that something is completely lifeless or inactive. For example:

    "After the accident, the engine was dead as a doornail."

    "The party was so dull, it felt dead as a doornail within minutes."

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    E19 - 7m - May 5, 2024
  • Topic Talk | Celebrity Crush

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack share their teenage celebrity crushes!

    Transcript:

    00:00:01

    Jack

    Welcome to the A-Z English podcast. My name is Jack and I'm here with my co-host social. And today we are doing a topic talk and we're talking about celebrity crushes that you had when you were a kid. OK and social, just for our audiences understanding what is a crush.

    00:00:22

    Jack

    Again, if you have a crush on someone.

    00:00:25

    Xochitl

    A crush is like when you really, really like someone. Kind of like an intense infatuation.

    00:00:31

    Xochitl

    But it's not really based on anything real like like a real connection with that person. It's a lot of what you project on that person, and it's usually based on, like either appearance or small like personality traits that you've acquired through seeing them act or whatever, that you kind of imagined for this person.

    00:00:44

    발표자

    Right.

    00:00:50

    Jack

    And so you you.

    00:00:51

    Jack

    You know, often like, like high school kids will. You'll have a crush on a girl in your class or a guy in your class, but you don't really know that person. You just. But. But it's like, almost like an intense feeling of love. Like it's not real.

    00:00:59

    발표자

    MHM.

    00:01:04

    Jack

    Love. But it's just like it feels like you're you're your chest is being crushed because you're you're so you. Your feelings are so strong for this person. Like they're perfect, you know? Ohh the perfect person. But really in reality you don't know them at all. And they could be awful, you know, so.

    00:01:24

    발표자

    Great.

    00:01:25

    Jack

    Yeah, that's. So we have a thing called celebrity crushes because there's, you know, we're we're surrounded by celebrities all the.

    00:01:32

    Jack

    Time and sometimes we will develop. You know that feeling of like, again, that crush feeling. It's like it's not love or it's not real love, but it's like attraction to a person who you feel like is your soul mate your perfect person, you know.

    00:01:47

    발표자

    Right.

    00:01:52

    Jack

    Like Ohh that's that's my ideal, you know person.

    00:01:57

    Jack

    And so when you were like young, when you're a kid who were your celebrity crushes, like who, who were you, who did you crush on when you were?

    00:02:10

    Xochitl

    Oh boy.

    00:02:12

    Xochitl

    My biggest one was Justin.

    00:02:16

    Xochitl

    Sure.

    00:02:17

    Jack

    Ohh, I was gonna say Justin Timberlake.

    00:02:20

    Xochitl

    No, I I he was too old, I think for my. Yeah, cause. Yeah, Justin Bieber was like my he was a couple years older, like few years. He's a few years older than me, I think. Yeah. And so he was a big celebrity crush of mine when I was probably like, 14 or 30 when I was 13, he was like.

    00:02:22

    Jack

    Yeah, he's like a grandfather.

    00:02:39

    Xochitl

    16 probably and uh.

    00:02:41

    Jack

    Can I ask you a question? So did you have Bieber fever?

    00:02:42

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:02:46

    Xochitl

    God. Yeah, I did. Uh, I thought it was too good to have Beaver fever, but I wasn't. And I didn't like him at the same time that every, like everyone else, already liked him. And I was, like, holding out. And then I saw this interview where he was really nice to this little girl, and it was like I thought it was so cute.

    00:03:04

    Xochitl

    UM.

    00:03:06

    Jack

    And that was before all the facial tattoos and the like neck tattoos.

    00:03:09

    Xochitl

    Yeah, it was. We went kind of crazy and, you know, had a meltdown because he was like he was transitioning from child star to adult star. And I thought he was just so cute. And I had, like, a people bought me, like gifts for my birthday. Like, they bought me both of his.

    00:03:12

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:03:18

    발표자

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:03:27

    Xochitl

    Like CD's that he had at the time, a lunch box with his face on it.

    00:03:32

    Xochitl

    And I had a huge poster that my sister bought me on my bedroom wall.

    00:03:37

    Jack

    Nice.

    00:03:39

    Xochitl

    And so that was a big that was like one of my first big celebrity crushes. Jack, you go with one of yours and we'll just go back and forth here. How about?

    00:03:49

    Jack

    OK, again, my OK, I'm 47 years old, so you have to understand these all that my celebrity crushes all come from like the late 80s to early 90s. OK, when I was like 12 or 13 years old because I was born in 1977, so.

    00:04:07

    Jack

    Uh, my. My first uh, I don't know. I'm trying to think of, like, my celebrity crush.

    00:04:15

    Jack

    I think maybe one of the one of my first ones was the actress Elizabeth Shue.

    00:04:22

    Jack

    UM, and you probably don't know who she is, right? Elizabeth Shue was in a movie called The Karate Kid.

    00:04:23

    Xochitl

    I.

    00:04:30

    Jack

    And.

    00:04:31

    Xochitl

    Oh my God. She was Daniel's girlfriend.

    00:04:33

    Jack

    Daniel's girlfriend. Yes, yes, I thought she was so.

    00:04:35

    Xochitl

    I do know cause I saw that my mom made me watch. My mom's a Gen. Xer and she made us watch the karate.

    00:04:40

    Xochitl

    Kid, when we were kids, which I liked a lot, so yeah.

    00:04:41

    Jack

    Yeah, it's a classic. You gotta watch it. The Karate Kid is, uh, yeah, it's a classic movie. And Elizabeth Shue was the love interest in there. She had a Daniel had a crush on her. They she had an ex-boyfriend who was a bully.

    00:04:57

    Jack

    And, UM, yeah, it was. Uh, she she was, you know, absolutely, you know, the epitome of, like, the perfect high school girlfriend, you know, bubbly, charming, cute, you know.

    00:05:12

    Xochitl

    You're all next door style.

    00:05:14

    Jack

    Girl next door. Yeah, she was. She was very. She was kind, you know, she wasn't stuck up. She. Yeah. Yeah, so.

    00:05:22

    Jack

    Elizabeth Shue was was one of my first celebrity crushes.

    00:05:26

    Xochitl

    Have you seen a Cobra Kai?

    00:05:28

    Jack

    Yeah, I've watched that. I saw a couple of seasons of that show. I enjoyed it.

    00:05:33

    Xochitl

    You much more because she shows back up.

    00:05:35

    Xochitl

    At some point.

    00:05:36

    Jack

    Yeah, she did show up in that one. Yeah. And that, you know, now she's 50, you know, something years old, 55 years old or whatever, but.

    00:05:47

    Jack

    Yeah. So you know, that was one of my celebrity crushes. I'm sure I'm, it's me and about a million other Gen. X, you know, men my age, maybe 10s of millions who would put her on the list. Yeah. Yeah.

    00:06:04

    Jack

    What's your #2?

    00:06:04

    Xochitl

    Right.

    00:06:06

    Xochitl

    My #2 High School Musical when everyone was crushing on Zac Efron, I was crushing on Corbin Bleu.

    00:06:14

    Jack

    Corporate blue. Who's that? Which one is that?

    00:06:16

    Xochitl

    That's his friend. Uh, I don't know, cause I only watched High School Musical one time, but.

    00:06:23

    Xochitl

    He's like I'm trying to find a picture of him to show you guys here.

    00:06:27

    Xochitl

    He was this guy.

    00:06:29

    Jack

    But Corbin Bleu is his real name. Or is that his the name of OK?

    00:06:32

    Xochitl

    Yeah, that's his real name. This is Corbin book. Can you see him here? There you go.

    00:06:36

    Jack

    Ohh yeah, yeah, yeah. OK. He's got like kind of.

    00:06:38

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:06:39

    Jack

    Big hair, yeah.

    00:06:40

    Xochitl

    Curly hair and yeah, he was my I had he. I thought he was really cute and I did not understand the hype over Zach Efron. I felt like Zac Efron's eyes didn't match the rest of his face and he was orange looking and sorry that got Bron.

    00:06:55

    Xochitl

    Those were like my observations, and I thought Corbin Blue was just the cutest, so that was.

    00:07:01

    Xochitl

    Yeah.

    00:07:02

    Jack

    OK. OK, interesting. Alright. Alright, I'm.

    00:07:05

    Xochitl

    I almost always like never was like a huge fan of the main character. I always liked the second guy like in Harry Potter.

    00:07:13

    Jack

    You like the goof like goofy best friend. You know guy? Yeah.

    00:07:16

    Xochitl

    Yeah, like in Harry Potter. I always liked Ron Weasley over Harry.

    00:07:20

    Jack

    Ohh OK yeah, yeah.

    00:07:21

    Xochitl

    It's like that was just my thing. I.

    00:07:23

    Xochitl

    Don't know why.

    00:07:24

    Jack

    No.

    00:07:25

    Jack

    Well, Harry short, you know, in real life he's a pretty short guy.

    00:07:28

    Xochitl

    Isn't Rupert Grint also short, though?

    00:07:31

    Jack

    Probably, yeah. These might be taller than Harry though, yeah?

    00:07:32

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I think he's too. I just thought he was cuter than he.

    00:07:35

    Jack

    They're all tiny little yeah.

    00:07:38

    Xochitl

    They're all short people, yeah.

    00:07:39

    Jack

    Yeah, yeah.

    00:07:42

    Jack

    UM alright, my my second one is I used to watch this show again when I was like, you know, 12 or 13 called saved by the bell. It was a sitcom.

    00:07:57

    Jack

    And but it was like a. It was like a a kids sitcom. It was different. It would. It was on Saturday mornings instead of like, you know, Thursday evening saved by the bell. And it was it took place in the high school, and there was a again, this is like a a side character.

    00:08:09

    발표자

    Hmm.

    00:08:16

    Jack

    UM named Lisa Turtle was her name, but her real name is Lark Voorhees, the actress and I had a a huge crush on on her and she was like.

    00:08:31

    Jack

    The character. Do you have you ever heard?

    00:08:33

    Jack

    Of the character Screech.

    00:08:35

    Jack

    Screech the the nerd? No. OK, but you have no idea what I'm talking about right now. OK, so it doesn't matter. No, none of our students know what I'm talking about. Saved by the bell. Uh, Lisa, turtle. And that's her. Her real name is Lark Voorhees, the actress. And so I had a huge.

    00:08:40

    Xochitl

    No, I'm 25.

    00:08:54

    Jack

    Crush on her.

    00:08:55

    Jack

    Yeah.

    00:08:55

    Xochitl

    Lark is a cool name for a woman. It's a real name Mark.

    00:08:57

    Jack

    That is a cool name, I know.

    00:09:00

    Jack

    Maybe the only way it would be cooler is to do like skylark.

    00:09:05

    Jack

    That's is that cooler?

    00:09:06

    Xochitl

    I've seen Skyler as a name, but I like lark better. I think. I think that's cooler. Like lark George.

    00:09:11

    Jack

    What about skylark?

    00:09:15

    Xochitl

    I think it's like trying too hard. I think Laura Voorhees sounds like you're like a cool like in a punk rock band or so, you know, like a drunk band. You know what I mean? I like it. Yeah. Alright. My third one was when I was like a little bit older. So it's like, so I'm a little embarrassed, but I think I was like 18 or 19. So I was still a.

    00:09:20

    Jack

    Yeah. Yeah, OK. OK. OK, yeah, that's good.

    00:09:25

    발표자

    Like.

    00:09:32

    Xochitl

    Teenager so in Guk.

    00:09:36

    Jack

    Ohh.

    00:09:37

    Xochitl

    The Korean uh actor and singer.

    00:09:42

    Xochitl

    And I saw him in a music video by K will called. Please don't. And he was really cute. Like I just thought, Oh my God, he's so cute. And I started, like, looking up what other stuff he was in besides his music video. And he was in some K drama.

    00:09:57

    Xochitl

    And.

    00:09:58

    Xochitl

    But he had his own music and stuff, and so I would like, listen to his music videos. He has a really nice voice.

    00:10:04

    Jack

    Is that why you came to Korea? Because you got into, like population.

    00:10:06

    Xochitl

    No, no, no, no, no, no, I was not. No, that's so embarrassing. No, I wasn't a huge K pop person. I like solo artists like like IU selling the.

    00:10:08

    Jack

    You didn't come to meet him in person.

    00:10:20

    Jack

    Or rain something like that. B yeah.

    00:10:23

    Xochitl

    I don't really know rain or be that might have been like a little before my, but sawing OK will IU. I was a huge fan of them.

    00:10:33

    Xochitl

    And the whole reason I really got into Korea was actually a YouTuber called Tonon Mukadam. I was looking up how.

    00:10:39

    Xochitl

    To.

    00:10:40

    Xochitl

    Teach abroad in uh. Just teaching abroad in general, I think, and her channel came up about teaching abroad in Korea. And then like the benefits are so.

    00:10:50

    Xochitl

    Much.

    00:10:51

    Xochitl

    Better and easier, I feel like than a lot of other English.

    00:10:54

    Xochitl

    Yes, all countries. So that's how I.

    00:10:55

    Jack

    Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

    00:10:58

    Xochitl

    Yeah, but selling Google was a huge celebrity crush of mine. So what's your last one, Jack?

    00:11:03

    Jack

    OK, OK.

    00:11:05

    Jack

    My last one is, uh, the singer. This one was she was very popular when I was in high school, maybe.

    00:11:13

    Jack

    10th grade or 9th grade or something? Uh. Jewel.

    00:11:18

    Jack

    Do you know jewel?

    00:11:19

    Xochitl

    No.

    00:11:20

    Jack

    You've never heard of.

    00:11:22

    Xochitl

    I've never heard of her. I really have never heard of.

    00:11:24

    Jack

    Her. So I'm so old. All right, Jewel, is she? She she's a guitarist, singer-songwriter. She her first single. Who will save your soul.

    00:11:41

    Jack

    Is, you know, has probably 20 million downloads on on uh, YouTube.

    00:11:48

    Jack

    She's just a very, very talented singer and I think it's just her beauty and her talent was, you know, just, you know, I've had a crush on her because I think there's something about that combination of like.

    00:12:08

    Jack

    Umm.

    00:12:09

    Jack

    Attractive beauty and also talent and ability to sing and write music. It was to me like, you know, he's perfect, you know, like Oh my goodness. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It wasn't just about physical, you know, appearance. It was like ohh man. You know she's smart.

    00:12:18

    Xochitl

    Like, Oh my gosh, yeah.

    00:12:20

    Xochitl

    Right, like a triple Emmys thing.

    00:12:29

    Jack

    Beautiful. And she can write music and sing and perform and has a great voice.

    00:12:33

    Jack

    So you know, I mean, I'm sure that like lots of my parents, generations had crushes on like Joni Mitchell or, you know, Emmy Lou Harris or other, you know, you know Diana Ross or whatever. But yeah, for my generation, it was jewel and.

    00:12:45

    발표자

    Hmm.

    00:12:54

    Jack

    You you have no idea what I'm talking about.

    00:12:56

    Xochitl

    I'm going to have to look up after this, I'll send you send me like a YouTube.

    00:12:58

    Jack

    Yes.

    00:13:00

    Xochitl

    Tube of one of her songs of dual songs.

    00:13:03

    Jack

    You should go down to jewel. You should go down to jewel rabbit hole. You might actually like her cause you're you're like the singer guitar player guitar writer. You know, singer-songwriter yourself. Yeah, you would. Yeah.

    00:13:06

    Xochitl

    I will. I will.

    00:13:10

    Xochitl

    Yeah, I think it's probably like, yeah. And I'll send you like a song, good song, and then we can trade, yeah.

    00:13:19

    Jack

    OK. Yeah. Then we'll compare notes next week. Yeah, OK.

    00:13:22

    Xochitl

    Yeah, sounds good.

    00:13:24

    Xochitl

    All right, listeners, well, you have to let us know who your celebrity crushes were. I'd love to hear about celebrity crushes from around the world. I'll leave us a comment down below at A-Z. Englishpodcast.com shoot us an e-mail at at ozenglishpodcast@gmail.com and make sure to join our community of students in our WhatsApp and WeChat groups.

    00:13:43

    Xochitl

    And we'll see you guys next time. Bye bye.


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    E23 - 15m - May 2, 2024
  • EXCLUSIVEVocabulary Spotlight | Australian Slang

    In this exclusive episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Jack tests Xochitl on her knowledge of several Australian slang terms.

    Australian English is rich with colorful and unique slang terms. Here are some examples:

    G'day: A common Australian greeting, short for "good day."

    Mate: A friend or companion.

    Fair dinkum: Authentic or genuine.

    Barbie: Barbecue.

    Bloke: A man or guy.

    Sheila: A woman.

    Brekkie: Breakfast.

    Dunny: Toilet.

    Bikkie: Biscuit or cookie.

    Maccas: McDonald's.

    Thongs: Flip-flops or sandals.

    Shout: To buy someone a drink or take turns buying rounds.

    Ripper: Excellent or fantastic.


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    Intro/Outro Music: Daybird by Broke for Free

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    E16 - 17m - May 1, 2024
  • Vocabulary Spotlight | Punch in, Punch out, and Punch up

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    In this episode of The A to Z English Podcast, Xochitl and Jack explain the meaning of several phrasal verbs which use the word punch.

    Punch in: To enter data or information by pressing keys on a keyboard or keypad, often used in the context of clocking in at work.

    Example: "Don't forget to punch in when you arrive at the office."

    Punch out: To exit a time clock or record one's departure from work by pressing a button or card.

    Example: "I'll punch out at 5:00 and then we can grab dinner."

    Punch up: To improve or enhance something, often by adding more energy, excitement, or impact.

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    Intro/Outro Music: Daybird by Broke for Free

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    E18 - 9m - Apr 30, 2024
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