Improve Your English – 246 [Archives:2004/758/Education]

July 26 2004

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

Friendship is like a perennial stream. It's a sublime contract for a life time. Friendship is all-embracing. It stands the acid test of trials and tribulations of life. Age can not wither it nor custom stale.

– We're friends forever. There are so many things that you've given me which makes me happy. Your friendship is the most important and the most amazing of them! Thanks for the same!
– How come you're so priceless to me, dear friend! There's one thing which I want you to know: How I wish I was you So genuine! So likeable!
– Some one who stands by you as a pillar of strength at all times is the one who is a friend. Thanks for standing by me always.
– The best place in the world is right beside a friend. No wonder I'm always happy when I'm with you, dear friend.
– You're my friend, with whom I would love to share my big and small dreams, hopes, fears, joys and much more, now and always.
– Your presence adds colors to my life.
– How rare and wonderful is that flash of a moment, when we realize we have discovered a friend. With love and care.
– You know how people marvell when someone's lucky in love. Well, I feel like I'm lucky in friendship.
– You're one of life's precious finds. You're all the things I could wish for a friend. And I think to myself just how lucky I am to have you in my life. You'll always be special to me.
– Dear friend! The best moments of my life are the ones spent with you.
– Friendship makes the day light in the understanding, out of darkness and confusion of thoughts.

II. How to Say it Correctly
1. Ticket-holders can only get seats for this concert.
2. Neither they nor I were ready to agree.
3. I went to the meeting with Bashar and Adel, but neither of us was impressed.
4. Majdi's uncle asked Majdi and myself to help him.
5. The spectators were shouting at the referee and arguing with each other.

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. In the beginner's class one was taught the correct way of looking after one's equipment.
2. A large number of people are taking part in the cross-country race.
3. Neither Hana'a nor her father has blue eyes.
4. Neither our cousins nor their parents answer letters.
5. Neither their neighbor nor the friends are happy with him.

III. Increase Your Word Power
(A) How to express it in one word
1. To give a person forgiveness for wrong doing.
2. Something which is not a necessary part of something larger but which makes it more beautiful, useful and effective.
3. To cause oneself to become accustomed to new conditions.
4. Highest point of development or perfection.
5. Person who can do clever things with his body.

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. The pilot and others responsible for flying an aircraft, together with those who look after the comfort of passengers: crew (n)
2. To cause to feel uncomfortable or ashamed in the presence of others: abash (vt)
3. To give up officially an official position, especially that of king or queen: abdicate (vt)
4. To take away a person unlawfully, by force: abduct (vt)
5. Go away suddenly, secretly and aware of having done wrong: abscond (vi)

(B) Literary term of Foreign origin
Give the source of origin and meaning of the following
1. peripeteia 2. periphrasis
3. phenomenology 4. philology
5. phoneme

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. parenthesis (Gk 'put in beside'): Sentence within another sentence, marked off by commas, dashes, or brackets.
2. parody (Gk 'beside, subsidiary or mock song'): The imitative use of the words, style, attitude, tone and ideas of an author in such a way as to make them ridiculous.
3. pastoral (Lat 'pertaining to shepherds'): Relating to shepherds and country life.
4. pathos (Gk. 'suffering, feeling'): That quality in a work of art which evokes feelings of tenderness, pity or sorrow.
5. penta meter (Gk 'of five measures'): The five-foot line and the basic line in much English verse; especially in blank verse and the heroic couplet.

(C) Words commonly confused
Bring out differences in meaning of the following pairs of words
1. efface, deface
2. forgiveness, pardon
3. innocent, innocuous
4. memorial, memorable
5. imperial, imperious

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. beneficial (adj) (having good effect): Exercise is beneficial to health.
beneficiary (n) (person who receives a benefit): The new scheme has helped many beneficiaries.
2. artistic (adj) (done with skill and good taste): She is a person of artistic taste.
artful (adj) (cunning, deceitful): Beware of his artful strategies.
3. contagious (adj) (disease that spreads by touch): AIDS is not a contagious disease.
infectious (adj) (disease that can be spread by means of germs carried in the atmosphere or in water): He has been affected by small pox which is an infectious disease.
4. crime (n) (an offence which is punishable by law): The punishment was lighter than his crime.
sin (n) (the breaking of law regarded as holy): No one commits a sin during the holy month of Ramadan.
5. devoted (adj) (having deep, strong love): I am a devoted husband.
addicted (vt) (given up to a habit): He is addicted to reading books.

(D) Idioms and phrases
Use the following idioms in illustrative sentences
1. play second fiddle to
2. pull a long face
3. call a spade a spade
4. catch (some one) red-handed
5. a bed of roses

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. a peeping Tom (a man who secretly watches people): He is a notorious peeping Tom, very curious to know the secrets of his lady colleagues.
2. a doubting Thomas (a person who doesn't believe something): Don't be a doubting Thomas; I'm telling you the truth.
3. live from hand to mouth (to be very poor): After the death of their father, the family has been living from hand to mouth.
4. earn an honest penny (to earn money in an honest way): Teaching may not be very rewarding financially, but at least I earn an honest penny.

IV. Grammar and Composition
(A) Grammar
Complete the sentences below with the correct form of 'lie' or 'lay'
1. I don't need any help in the kitchen, but do you think you could )) the table?
2. Do you remember reading that fairy story about a goose that )) golden eggs?
3. Do you know if the men )) the carpet yet?
4. She wasn't feeling very well, so she's gone upstairs to )) down.
5. I can see just by looking into your eyes that you are )).
6. He didn't move, but just )) where he fell.
7. I don't have to work tomorrow – I can have a nice long )) in.
8. Have you ever )) to any about your past?
9. When he came home he found the letters )) on the floor.
10. I don't know how long I must have )) awake last night, worrying.

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

(B) Composition
Last week's topic
73: An idle mind is a devil's workshop
Action leads to the culmination of the inner potential of a being. Conversely, idleness makes the wit rust. Nothing comes out of nothing. Hence idleness generates emptiness; it is the mother of vices, the nurse of sin. A busy mind is dynamic and vibrant. It has no time to admit evil thoughts or murky ideas. Like a stream it is fresh and pure. But, as the poet William Blake says: 'Expect poison from the standing water.' An idle mind is marked by a negative attitude. It harbors all kinds of evil thoughts and designs. Often it becomes a recipe for motiveless malignity. Therefore one should be well advised to cultivate a positive attitude and be engaged in constructive thoughts and never let the mind brood or be engrossed in counter-productive ideas and thoughts.

V. Pearls from the Holy Quran
“O ye who believe!
Stand out firmly
For justice, as witnesses
To Allah, even as against
Yourselves, or your parents,
Or your kin, and whether
It be (against) rich or poor:
For Allah can protect both.”

VI. Words of Wisdom
“It is cynicism and fear that freeze life; it is faith that thaws it out, releases it, sets it free.”
)Harry E. Fosdick