Improve Your English – 245 [Archives:2004/756/Education]

July 19 2004

Dr. Ramakanta Sahu
I. What to Say
Situations and Expressions (68)
Friendship Day (VI)

Sincerity of purpose and honest efforts to serve are the most precious input that nurtures any relationship. Friendship is no exception to this. A true friend is not calculative about the physical or material dividends to be gained out of the relationship; but more than that it believes in giving, bestowing, enriching and fulfilling.
– Once in a while, you meet somebody new and it seems that you've known him from the start – you feel you've found someone special to trust and confide in, someone with whom you can talk hart-to-heart. You share a strange closeness, a feeling that, you know, will never end – once in a while, you meet somebody new, who becomes such a wonderful friend. I know in my heart that I'll never forget the way I could tell, just as soon as we met what a wonderful friend you would be, for even today, you mean so much to me.
– You've taught me the meaning of togetherness, my friend You've the gift of making people feel important. Your soft and caring nature makes one feel comfortable and the way you instill faith , that impossible is still possible and make you a lovable person I've ever met.
– I've been through changes, both good and bad and those are the times when the worth and importance of a person is actually realized Though no one may be able to change the world, but I want you to know that at least you've made a significant difference in one life and that's mine Thanks for choosing me to share a wonderful gift of yourself with me.

II. How to Say it Correctly
Correct errors, if any, in the following sentences
1. In the beginners' class one was taught the correct way of looking after their equipment.
2. A large number of these people is taking part in the cross-country race.
3. Neither Hana nor her father have blue eyes.
4. Neither our cousins nor their parents answers letters.
5. Neither their neighbor nor the friends is happy with him.

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. The temperature of our environment is becoming dangerously high.
2. Aisha always believes that her brothers were treated more favorably then she (was treated).
3. In an angry voice the guard commanded the prisoner to sit down.
4. While he was cleaning his teeth, he realized with a shock that his watch was slow and he would be late for his appointment.
5. This house badly needs painting.

III. Increase Your Word Power
(A) How to express it in one word
1. The pilot and others responsible for flying an aircraft, together with those who look after the comfort of passengers.
2. To cause to feel uncomfortable or ashamed in the presence of others.
3. To give up officially an official position, especially that of king or queen.
4. To take away a person unlawfully, by force.
5. Go away suddenly, secretly and aware of having done wrong.

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. Languages that combine simple words into compounds without change of form or loss of meaning: agglutinating (adj)
2. The scientific study of soil and the growing of crops: agronomy (n)
3. A military officer who helps an officer of higher rank in his duties: aide-de-camp (n)
4. A place where military aircrafts land and take off: airbase (n)
5. The movement of air over the surface of an aircraft in flight: air flow (n)

(B) Words and phrases of foreign origin
Give the source of origin and meaning of the following:
1. parenthesis 2. parody 3. pastoral
4. paths 5. penta meter

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. paradox (Gk 'beside/beyond opinion'): An improbable combination of opposing qualities, ideas, etc.
2. paragraph (Gk 'side writing'): A passage, or section, or subdivision in a piece of writing.
3. parallelism (Gk 'alongside one another'): Phrases or sentences of similar construction and meaning placed side by side, balancing each other.
4. paraphrase (Gk 'telling in other words'): A version in other words of the sense of a passage or text.
5. parataxis (Gk 'beside arrangement;'): Co-ordination of clauses without conjunctions.

(C ) Words commonly confused
Bring out differences in meaning of the following pairs of words
1. beneficial, beneficiary 2. artistic, artful
3. contagious, infectious 4. crime, sin
5. devoted, addicted

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. acuity (n) (fineness or sharpness of the mind or the senses of sight or hearing): Gifted as he is, the acuity of his intellect is amazing.
equity (n) (the principle of justice): There should be the principle of equity and fair play in administration.
2. affectation (n) (behavior which is not one's natural manner): She is a genuine human being and without any affectation.
affection (n) (gentleness, fondness): A teacher shares her affection with all her students equally.
3. confess (vt) (say or admit that one has done wrong): The prisoner refused to confess his guilt.
acknowledge (vt) (agree or admit the truth of): We expect the addressee to acknowledge our letters.
4. admittance (n) (being admitted to, right of entrance): No admittance to the office except on prior appointment.
admission (n) (being allowed to enter or join a club, school, building, etc.): Admission to the medical course is becoming increasingly difficult.
5. besides (prep) (in addition to): Besides being a good student, he is an excellent sportsman.
beside (prep) (at the side of): The hospital is beside the mosque.

(C) Idioms and phrases
Use the following idioms in illustrative sentences
1. a peeping Tom
2. a doubting Thomas
3. live from hand to mouth
4. earn an honest penny
5. from A to Z

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. do one's bit (to do one's fair share of a task): You must do your bit if the goal is to be achieved.
2. put the cart before the horse (to do or say things in the wrong order): Giving treatment first and then carrying on diagnostic tests, on the patient is putting the cart before the horse.
3. have one foot in the grave (to be near death, especially because of old age): It is ridiculous for him to contest the election at the ripe age of 80 – he's got one foot in the grave.
4. feel at home (to feel very relaxed, as if one is in one's own home): Feel at home. You are among friends.
5. fall flat on one's face (to fail at something): Without adequate preparations he decided to plunge into the election fray. It's small wonder that he fell flat on his face.

IV. Grammar and Composition
(A) Grammar
Fill the blanks in the sentences with one of the following words:
alone isolated single only lonely

1. Bassim and Shahera lived in a )) cottage on the hills, eleven miles away from the nearest town.
2. Ramzy hasn't got any brothers or sisters. He is a )) child.
3. No one agreed with her. She was )) in her belief that she had made the right decision.
4. Although there were thousands of people around him in the city, Moin felt )) because he didn't have any friends.
5. I'm not married yet. I'm still )).

Suggested answers to last week's questions
Sentences with the same meaning
1. The exam was much easier than I had expected
I had expected the exam to be more difficult.
2. She sprained her ankle and she broke her wrist as well. Not only did she sprain her ankle, but also broke her wrist.
3. I'm going to get some one to make some new curtains. I'm going to have some new curtains made.
4. Rania felt upset because they hadn't invited her to the wedding. Rania felt upset because she was not invited to the wedding.
5. 'It was wrong of you to stay out so late', said Jamal to his son. Jamal told his son that he shouldn't stay out so late.
6. People say Chinese food is the best food in the world. Chinese food is regarded as the best in the world.
7. Please don't let me forget to go to the dentist.
Could you please remind me to go to the dentist?
8. It is three weeks since I saw Mansoor. I saw Mansoor three week's ago.
9. 'Wouldn't it be a good idea to apply for a job with the Yemen Times?' Mujib said to me.
Mujib suggested (to me) that I apply for a job with the Yemen Times.
10. The bank manager will only give me a loan if he is sure that I can repay it. The bank manager won't give me a loan unless I can repay it.

(B) Composition
Expand the central idea contained in the maxim
73: An idle mind is a devil's workshop

Last week's topic
72. If you would have peace,
be prepared for war
Perpetual alertness is the best way to defend oneself or one's country against aggression. One should be armed, not necessarily with armory or weapons, but with a deep sense of awareness of one's environment in order to protect oneself. In the struggle for existence, the fittest and the wisest survive. If an enemy notices that we are weak and defenseless, it would attack us and take our freedom. There are countless instances of stronger forces to pounce upon the weaker nations and annex them. It is a paradox that in order to make peace we have to fight a war. Stratagem is better than strength. We should be peaceful, but certainly not at the cost of our dignity. We have to display our strength so as to send a signal that no one should take us for a ride. Indeed, it has been well said that eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

V. Pearls from the Holy Quran
“There is not a good deed
Which ye do, but Allah
Is well-acquainted therewith.”

VI. Words of Wisdom
“It's lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges – you have to believe in yourself.”
)Mohammad Ali