Showing posts from October, 2013

Trick or treat

Source: Wikipedia (Toby Ord) Halloween, as you know it in Spain, is an American import. However, it has it roots in Celtic culture.

The saying Trick or Treat is translated as Truco o Trato. I think this is a mistake.

Trato should be translated as a deal or an agreement not treat.

A treat is something special you do or buy for someone else. In the case of Halloween, the treat would be the sweets that the children are given. I'm not sure but I think you'd translate it as gusto or invitación. Treat is also a verb. I was feeling a bit down so I treated myself to some chocolate biscuits. He treated his wife to a weekend away in Paris. If you behave, as a special treat, I'll take you to the park to feed the ducks. When did you last treat yourself to something? When did someone last treat you to something? Did you celebrate Halloween? What did you dress up as? 

Verb Patterns with "to"

Verb patterns are tricky.

There are verbs which are followed by the infinitive eg I want to go.

There are verbs which are followed by the -ing form eg I don't mind going.

There are verbs which are followed by objects eg I advised him to go.

There are verbs which are followed by a that clause eg I told you that I was going.

There are other combinations too.

Some verbs can take more than one form.

There can be a difference in meaning eg I stopped to go / I stoppedgoing.

Let's concentrate on the verbs that are followed by the infinitive. Complete the following sentences in a suitable way.

The customer demanded to ...  Her boyfriend promised to ...I hope to ... before the end of the year.... deserves to ... because ...The city hall is planning to ...I would love to ... one day. It's always been an ambition of mine.
The policeman refused to ...I wasn't allowed to ... when I was younger.I need to ... .     I should have done it ages ago.The Spanish tend to ...I can't…

Blog news - poll

I've decided to start the poll label again. Let's see how many responses I get.

In the left-hand column, below labels, you will find five questions that I'd like you to answer before Friday afternoon.

This weekend I will give you the answers.

There is no Alhambra in Grenada

Avios mix-up sees woman fly to Grenada, not Granada
A woman who booked a visit to Spain as part of a "bucket list" said she "just froze" when she realised she was being flown to the Caribbean instead.
Lamenda Kingdon, 62, from Plymouth, wanted to go to the Alhambra Palace in the Spanish region of Granada after being diagnosed with cancer.

However, she was booked on a flight to Grenada by travel rewards company Avios, an error which she only realised had been made once she was in the air.

Source: BBC News Vocabulary: a mix-up - a bucket - *a "bucket list" = a list of things that you want to do before you die. to reimburse - to achieve - to look forward to stg - a concern - to raise (money) - Idiom:

If you kick the bucket, you die. (informal)
I'm only 50. I don't want to kick the bucket just yet.I've just heard that the old lady on the first floor kicked the bucket. They say she had a heart attack. 

Grammar Review - Int 1

Find and correct the mistakes in the following groups of sentences. In each group there are two which are grammatically correct.

When did you last watch a film in English?Which team does play football in El Bernabeu?I've been to London to learn English when I was a teenager.Our homes are unlikely to be very different in twenty years time.I don't know what will I do for my birthday this year.By the time I finished writing the report, all my colleagues went home.
I did my shopping at the market when I met an ex-classmate.I might don't come to work tomorrow. I don't feel very well.A: Have you ever been to England?    B: Yes, I was there a couple of years ago.It is probably that Barcelona will win the league again this year.I didn't know where to go because I had never been there before.I have never read a book from Graham Greene. What are they like?
I think our teacher lives in Madrid for many years.I'd like ask you about the homework. There are a few thing…

Vocabulary Review - Int 1

Complete the words. Be careful to put the verbs into their correct form.

I havea_______ a meeting with Mr. Matheson for tomorrow at 9am.I t___ _____ my father. I'm talkative and sociable - just like him. My mother is more reserved.I like to keep u_-__-____ with the news. I buy a newspaper every day and I listen to the headlines every morning.The b______ broke into the house during the night as they slept.It isn't necessary to wear a tie but you should dresss______.I'm sorry. I can't wait. I'm in a h____.
It was a normal day in the town. All of a s_____, there was a loud explosion. People started running in all directions.It was an accident - honest. I never did it on p______.I'll have to take the car to work tomorrow because the train drivers are on s_____.I find him really annoying. He's always m______. He's never happy with anything.I am really l______ _______ to going away this weekend. I haven't been out of Madrid for ages.A: Can I have a re…

Pasapalabra - Int 2

What A are you if you are conscious of what is happening?

What B describes somebody who is always telling you what to do?

What C describes a tune that you remember easily?

What D is how you feel when your head goes round and round, and you think you are going to fall?

What E is when you ask somebody for some information?

What F is a phrasal verb that means you get the answer to something?

What G is a phrasal verb that describes your relationship with someone?

What H is when you put your arms around somebody to show affection?

What I  is the kind of writing used in this question?

What J do you tell someone and hopefully they laugh?

What K describes someone who is enthusiastic and really wants to do something

What L is another way of saying the words of a song?

What M do you do to your mind when you finally decide something?

What N is an expression that you say to somebody when you tell them that it doesn't matter?

What O describes something that is scandalous or shocking?

What P do …

Historic violin

Source: You Tube (JonRichie94) Key words: Titanic nearer my god to thee

Titanic Violin May Fetch World Record Price Wallace Hartley's violin has become part of the doomed ship's legend after his band played as the vessel went down.
The violin famously played by the Titanic's bandmaster as the linersankbeneath the waves is expected to fetch a world record price when it goes under the hammer today.
Wallace Hartley has become part of the doomed ship's legend after leading his fellow musicians in playing as the vessel went down, most famously the hymn Nearer My God To Thee.

Hartley and his seven fellow band members all died in the tragedy on April 14 1912, when the cruiser hit an iceberg in the North Atlantic and sank, killing 1,500 people.

His violin, which had been a gift from his fianceeMaria Robinson, was apparently found in a case strapped to his body when it was recovered from the icy waters.

Its re-emergence in 2006, when it was reportedly discovered in an a…

Madrid is just fine

Buskers, pimps and plant-lovers beware: This is Madrid's biggest crackdown since General Franco New anti-social behaviour laws ban everything from carelessly perched pot plants to carpet-beating in public
In the biggest crackdown on anti-social behaviour in decades, the city of Madrid is to impose new restrictions and fines on everything from soliciting the services of a prostitute to juggling, dog-feeding and carpet-beating in public.
All manner of human behaviour is being targeted under the new laws, including being careless with pot plants on a balcony or for using a park bench for – perish the thought – “something other than sitting”. Source: The Independent Vocabulary: a busker = a person who plays music in a public place to get money - un músico ambulante to busk - tocar algún instrumento en la calle para obtener dinero a pimp = sb who controls the work and money of a prostitute - un chulo beware (v - only imperative and infinitive) = used to warn sb of a danger - ten…

£1 wedding

The lavish wedding - for just a pound
A thrifty bride and groom have proved a wedding day to remember does not need to cost a fortune after celebrating their nuptials -- for just one pound.

Georgina Porteous and Sid Innes organised their perfect day for family and friends, complete with rings, flowers, a cake and a photographer to capture the occasion.

They also hosted a reception with a picnic, drinks, jazz music and dancing at a romantic setting in the Scottish Highlands.

But incredibly, apart from the £70 they had to pay by law for their marriage fees, their only expenditure was a pound on Georgina's vintage wedding gown.

The newlyweds have now been toasting their big day after spending only a tiny fraction of the average £20,00o cost of a wedding in the UK.

Source: Scottish Express Vocabulary:
lavish (adj) = showing that a lot of money has been spent - lujoso, desmesurado

thrifty (adj) = showing a careful use of money especially by avoiding waste - ahorrativo

the bride and groom

Can you do better than Botella?

Ana Botella was ridiculed forthat infamous speechbut could you do any better?

Here are a few attempts. Can you spot any mistakes? Which is your favourite?


Dear IOC members,

I am so thankful of having to have the priviledge to convince you why Madrid is an Olympic city.

First of all, I would like to point out that Madrid is the most well-connected city in the world. The buildings for this magical event are almost built. Furthermore, Madrid got has a sense of serenity that you feel as you put a step take a step in this modern city.

In this place, you feel as you were as if you are in seventh heaven as you walk in the streets and see how all the cultures can live in peace and taste one of the best gastronomies in the world.

In conclusion, Madrid gotthe sport's feel has got the feel of sport to be an Olympic city.


Thank you Mr President.

Good morning IOC delegates.

My previous colleagues have told you about all benefits that the Olympic family will get if Madrid is elected for t…