Showing posts from October, 2010

Fluorescent prostitutes

Spanish prostitutes ordered to wear reflective vests for their own safety
Women touting for customers on a rural highway outside Els Alamus near Lleida in Catalonia have been told to don the yellow fluorescent bibs or pay fines of 40 euros (£36) under road traffic laws.

Police claim the sex workers on the LL-11 road are not being specifically targeted because of what they do but because they posed a danger to drivers

The prostitutes are in breach of 2004 law which states pedestrians on major highways and hard shoulders must wear the high visibility garments.

A spokesman for the regional police force, the Mossos d'Esquadra said: "In the past couple of months the prostitutes have been fined for two reasons: for not wearing the reflective jacket and for creating danger on the public highway."

The move follows recent legislation introduced by Els Alamus town hall to ban prostitutes from offering sex for sale in public urban areas. The mayor Josep Maria Bea has been accus…

Do you take a nap?

Ecuadorean super-snorer wins siesta contest in Spain

A jobless security worker has won a competition billed as Spain's inaugural siesta championship, napping for 17 minutes in a busy shopping centre.

Ecuadorean Pedro Soria Lopez took first place and 1,000 euros (£890) for his efforts - or lack of them.

Judges praised the 62-year-old not only for the duration of his 40 winks, but also for his volume, notching up snores of 70 decibels - around talking level.

The contest was run by Spain's National Association of Friends of the Siesta.

It was part of a campaign to revive the Spanish power-napping tradition, which is seen as threatened by the fast pace of modern life.

Over the course of nine days, 360 competitors were challenged to sleep for as much of a 20-minute period allotted to them as possible.

Participants stretched out on sofas in the Madrid shopping centre while their pulses were monitored to check they were asleep.

Judges awarded points for the speed with which participa…

Now no smoking in cars

Ash Scotland calls for a ban on smoking in vehicles

An anti-smoking charity has called for a consultation on banning smoking in vehicles in Scotland.

Ash Scotland made the call, along with 32 other recommendations, as part of a strategy to tackle "Scotland's biggest killer".

The charity said the change would highlight the impact of second-hand smoke on others.

However, the Tobacco Manufacturers' Association said such a move would be a "step too far".

Latest figures suggest a quarter of all adult deaths in Scotland can be attributed to smoking-related diseases.

Setting out their "Beyond Smoke Free" document, Ash Scotland said the country had taken major steps to cut smoking in the past six years, but that more needed to be done.

The document calls for a consultation on introducing legislation to ban smoking in vehicles and the development of "robust" intermediate and endpoint targets to reduce the effects of passive smoking in the home and…

Pre Int - mistakes

Here are some mistakes that I have heard in class:
A: Was the time OK? B: Yes, it was sunny.I hate doing the homework, especially the ironing.I'd like to visit others countries.A: I went to the beach in the summer. B: I too.She lives in the same neighbourhood that me.A: Do you have many English speaking friends? B: No, I haven't.A: Does he see often his parents? B: Most weekends, I think. She is quite tall and has a long, black hair.Find the mistakes and correct them.

Three benefit stories

The UK government has started making huge cuts in spending in an attempt to reduce the country's equally huge deficit. There will be changes to the benefit system and child, disability and housing benefits are among those affected. Here are three stories, one about each benefit, which illustrates the madness of the system.

A FECKLESSlayabout has fathered eight children by eight different mothers – with two more on the way.
Jobless Keith Macdonald sparked outrage last night after it emerged that he does not see any of his children and does not give any money to their mothers, meaning taxpayers will have tofootthe massive £2million benefits bill.

In a damning example of Shameless Britain, Macdonald, whose ninth and tenth babies are due next year, whinged: “Why should I pay a penny for them?”

Just £5 a week is deducted from his incapacity benefit, which he claims for a bad back, to go towards the children’s upkeep. Last night critics condemned 25-year-old…

Pronunciation - plural / 3º person "s"

The -(e)s of the verb in 3º person in the present simple is pronounced as /s/ after:
/k/ eg like /laɪk/ - likes /laɪks//p/ eg stop /stɒp/ -  stops /stɒps//f/ eg laugh /lɑːf/ - laughs /lɑːfs//t/ eg write /raɪt/ - writes /raɪts/and it is the same for regular plural nouns:
/k/ eg a tick /tɪk/ - ticks /tɪks//p/ eg a trip /trɪp/ - trips /trɪps//f/ eg a cough /kɒf/ - coughs /kɒfs//t/ eg a parent /ˈpeə.rənt/ - parents /ˈpeə.rənts/NB. Nouns that end in -fe change to -ves in plural.
So the pronunciation of  the -es changes to /z/.
a knife /naɪf/ - knives /naɪvz/a life /laɪf/ - lives /laɪvz/

The -(e)s of the verb in 3º person in the present simple and regular plural nouns are pronounced as /z/ after:
/v/ eg love /lʌv/ - loves /lʌvz//b/ eg rob /rɒb/ - robs /rɒbz//g/ eg a dog /dɒg/ - dogs /dɒgz//l/ eg call /kɔːl/ - calls /kɔːlz//m/ eg time /taɪm/ - times /taɪmz//n/ eg open /ˈəʊ.pən/ - opens /ˈəʊ.pənz//r/ eg a car /kɑːr / - cars /kɑːr z//ð/ eg sunbathe /ˈsʌn.beɪð/ - /ˈsʌn.beɪðz/

Int Plus - mistakes

Here are some mistakes that I have heard in class:
How long have you been working like teacher?A: I have gone to New York. B: Did you like it?Where were you the last Friday?I born in Zaragoza in 1980.I am going to Segovia next weekend but it depends if I have to work or not.We went on a travel to Barcelona in March.A: Do you like London? B: I like so much.Life there isn't as stressed as in Madrid.She has the same name that her mother.I like very much my name now but I didn't as a child.Find the mistakes and correct them.

Catwoman back in news

Woman fined for Coventry cat wheelie bin cruelty

A woman filmed dumping a cat in a wheelie bin has been fined £250 after admitting a cruelty offence.

The RSPCA charged Mary Bale after CCTV cameras showed her throwing four-year-old Lola into a bin outside her owners' home in Coventry.

Bale, 45, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to a cat. A charge of not providing the cat with a suitable environment was dropped.

The incident took place in Brays Lane in August.

Bale's actions sparked outrage when Lola's owner Darryl Mann posted the footage on the internet.

He found the footage on his CCTV recorder while searching for the missing cat.

Within hours, angry messages had been posted online and later a Facebook page, reportedly calling for Bale's death, was removed.

Mr Mann, and his wife Stephanie, said they had been "stunned" by the public reaction to the footage and asked people not to take matters into their own hands.

Source: BBC News

Just in case you …

Scot castaway inspiration for Robinson Crusoe

I am just reading about the visit of the Chilean President, Sebastian Pinera, to the UK. Of course there is more media interest in his visit due to recent events in Chile. He presented the PM with rock from the mine and a copy of the first message from the miners. He was given some beer to take back to the 33 as well as an early edition of Robinson Crusoe.

I was reminded that the novel was based on the real life story of a Scottish castaway on, you've guessed it, a Chilean island.

Here is his story:

Alexander Selkirk (1676 – 13 December 1721} was a Scottish sailor who spent four years as a castaway when he was marooned on an uninhabited island. It is probable that his travels provided the inspiration for Daniel Defoe's novel Robinson Crusoe.

Early life

The son of a shoemaker and tanner in Lower Largo, Fife, Scotland, Selkirk was born in 1676. In his youth he displayed a quarrelsome and unruly disposition.

At an early period he was engaged in buccaneer expeditions to the South …

No show from 007

Sean Connery summoned by Spanish court
Summons a result of an investigation that the authorities inevitably dubbed Operation Goldfinger

Sir Sean Connery and his wife, Micheline, have been summoned to appear in court in Marbella on the Costa del Sol tomorrow in a corruption case.

The summons are the result of an investigation that the authorities inevitably dubbed Operation Goldfinger and centre around the 1998 sale of Malibu, the house that Connery and his wife owned for several decades. The house was sold for €6.4m (£5.6m). The summons relates to €2.7m that the local authority claims it is owed and to the 72 luxury flats built on the site after Connery sold it, when planning permission had only been given for five family houses. The flats allegedly yielded a €53m profit.

As well as Connery and his wife, Micheline Roquebrune, 25 others have been caught up in Operation Goldfinger, among them Julián Muñoz, the former mayor of Marbella, his ex-wife Mayte Zaldívar, the singer Isabel Pantoja…

Mothers 'in charge of baby names'

Researchers found four out of ten fathers are forced to back down and let their partners select the name.

It also emerged the average couple consider 12 names before selecting their favourite, but a quarter do not make their final decision until after the baby is born.

The report, commissioned among 3,000 parents by Bounty Parenting Club, also disclosed that a third of couples fall out over their newborn's name.

Faye Mingo, spokeswoman for Bounty, said: ''The name game is a debate which often lasts the whole nine months of the pregnancy and causes the most upsets as couples fail to agree on the best name for their new born.

''It's understandably one of the hardest decisions mum and dad will ever have to make – largely because we do judge a person by their name before we've even got to know them.

''As well as finding a name both partners like there are still loads of other factors parents have to take into consideration when choosing a name – lik…

Good news dominates for once

Here are the front page headlines of today's newspapers.

The Independent:
Trapped miners emerge from the darkness

Daily Express:
The greate escape of all goes like clockwork

The Sun:
Miners saved from sweltering hell hole

Daily Mirror:
Prayer of thanks from oldest miner as world rejoices at the rescue

Daily Star:
One little boy's tearful welcome that sums up this heartwarming tale of human hope

The Daily Telegraph:
World transfixed by the great escape

Financial Times:
Chile's cheers, tears and relief as miners emerge into the spotlight after 69 days

Watch this video of the 33 reunions.

Have you been following the story? What are your feelings about it?

What do you think will happen now? How will their lives change?

Imagine you could interview them. What would you ask them?

First Cert - mistakes

Here are some mistakes that I have heard in class:
I wouldn't mind to see that film. Everyone says it's great.People says that it was his best ever performance.Have you seen George Clooney's last film?What did you do for your holidays at the end?I don't know what the exactly answer is. Do you?We have the same teacher that last year.All people in my office are working today.I hope to become a lawyer after I finish my career.Only a determined kind of person enters a reality show.I am working as a lawyer. I've been a lawyer for the last 10 years.
Find the mistakes and correct them.

Scotland 2 - Spain 3 Boo-hoo!

First Half

Scotland 0 -Spain 1 (but the "handball" wasn't intentional and looked more like an upper-arm)

Second Half

Scotland 0 - Spain 2 (deserve to be ahead)

Scotland 1 - Spain 2 (commentators put it down to Spain being "distracted")

Scotland 2 - Spain 2 (I put it down to arrogance -  the Spanish are getting a bit like the English)

Scotland 2 - Spain 3 (Ok the best team won but we gave you a fright)

Maybe next year ......

Come on Scotland!!!

Ahead of the Scotland - Spain football game tonight, here is our anthem (Flower of Scotland) to cheer the Scots on.

I hope that Scotland play with the same passion as the anthem is sung and that we provide Spain with a memorable shock (though a Scottish vicory would be more of a miracle than the survival of "los 33" LOL)

Read the lyrics.

See a rugby version of the anthem.

Remember to use the labels. Here are all the stories related to Scotland.

The greatest survival story

Trapped Chile miners emerge to fame, movie contracts - and angry wives
As freedom finally (1)beckons for the trapped miners of San Jose, some may find their homecoming party a more complicated affair than they would like.

Some will emerge to fame and fortune. Others just want to (2)fade rapidly back to obscurity. And a few have some serious explaining to do.

Unless an unthinkable disaster strikes, the (3)ordeal of "Los 33" - the 33 miners entombed nearly half a mile beneath the moonlike wilderness of the Atacama desert in northern Chile - will end this week.

A drill carving a rescue shaft broke through the rock into their subterranean (4)dungeon early on Saturday, 65 days after they were trapped by a huge rockfall.

They were feared dead for the first 17 days until a borehole reached the (5)shelter where they had eked out two days' emergency supply of tuna and peach.

That "miracle at the mine" was (6)remarkable enough. But for the last seven weeks, they have…