Daily English
Cultural English
Practical English

0327 Getting Caught in the Rain

访问量:
Complete Transcript
Welcome to English as a Second Language Podcast number 327: Getting Caught in the Rain.

This is English as a Second Language Podcast episode three-two-seven (327). I’m your host, Dr. Jeff McQuillan, coming to you from the Center for Educational Development in beautiful Los Angeles, California.

Visit our website at wwwwww.eslpod.com – actually, there are just three “Ws.” You can download a Learning Guide from our website, it will help you improve your English even faster. You can also take a look at our special courses on business and daily English, which we think you’ll like as well.

This episode is called “Getting Caught in the Rain.” Let’s get started.

[start of dialogue]

Margo: Oh geez, you’re drenched! It wasn’t supposed to rain today.

Ali: I know. I looked at the weather report last night and it was supposed to be a nice day. That’s the last time I trust those weathercasters! I hate getting caught in the rain. I’m soaking wet.

Margo: When I felt a raindrop on my head this morning, I should have known that we were in for a big rainstorm. Right then, I should have gone back into my house to get an umbrella, but as usual, I was running late.

Ali: I can’t believe I have to go out on sales calls today. I’m not looking forward to getting back in my car when it’s raining cats and dogs out there.

Margo: Somebody in this office must have an umbrella you can borrow for the day. I’ll go see.

Ali: Thanks. It looks like it’s only drizzling now. Maybe it’s letting up.

Margo: Don’t count on it. It’ll be pouring again in a minute. Let me see if I can round up an umbrella and maybe even a raincoat.

Ali: Thanks. I’ll be in the bathroom wringing out my clothes. What a miserable day!

[end of dialogue]

Our dialogue between Margo and Ali begins by Margo saying, “Oh geez, you’re drenched!” When you say, “Oh, geez,” you mean “Oh, dear.” It’s an expression usually that something bad has happened. To say someone is “drenched” means that they are very, very wet. You might also say they’re “soaked” (soaked). To be “drenched” or to be “soaked” means to be very wet.

Margo says, “It wasn’t supposed to rain today. Ali says, ”I know. I looked at the weather report last night and it was supposed to be a nice day. The “weather report” is sometimes called the “forecast,” it’s information about what will happen with the weather in the next couple of days. Unfortunately, most forecasts are at least partially inaccurate in many places, especially places where the weather changes quickly.

Ali is angry; he says, “That’s the last time I trust those weathercasters!” When someone says, “that’s the last time I...(something),” they mean that they’re angry, that they will not listen to those people again. The people here are the weathercasters; a “weathercaster” is a person who tells you what the weather will be like on the television or on the radio. We used to call them the “weatherman,” but now there are both men and women. In some places, the weathercaster on television or on the radio is actually a real meteorologist. A “meteorologist” is someone who has studied at the university about things related to the weather. On some channels, like a couple here in Los Angeles, the weathercaster is just a beautiful woman. I’m not sure which I prefer, you can guess!

Ali says, “I hate getting caught in the rain.” To “get caught in” something means that you are surprised by something; you weren’t expecting something, often a bad thing. “I got caught in a traffic jam” – I wasn’t expecting it, and suddenly there were many cars, and I was moving very slowly.

Ali gets caught in a rainstorm; he says, “I’m soaking wet.” We already said “soaked” means very wet. This is an expression you’ll sometimes hear: “I’m soaking wet,” means I’m very wet; I’m drenched. The word “soaking” has a couple of different meanings; take you look at our Learning Guide for some additional definitions.

Margo says, “When I felt a raindrop on my head this morning, I should have known that we were in for a big rainstorm.” A “raindrop” (one word) is one drop – or piece, if you will – of rain. It’s a small ball of water that falls from the sky. Margo says, “When I felt a raindrop on my head (or when I felt it hitting my head), I should have known (I should have understood and realized) that we were in for (that we will be expecting, or should be expecting) a big rainstorm.” A “rainstorm” is a storm with a lot of rain, when you get a lot of rain for a certain period of time.

Margo says, “Right then (meaning at that moment), I should have gone back into my house to get an umbrella, but as usual, I was running late.” An “umbrella” is what we call the thing that you use so that the rain does not fall on you. It’s usually round and is put above your head. Margo says she was “running late,” meaning she was late for her work; she was “behind schedule,” we also say.

Ali says, “I can’t believe I have to go out on sales calls today,” meaning he has to go and travel to other buildings – other businesses. He’s obviously a salesperson. He says, “I’m not looking forward to getting back in my car when it’s raining cats and dogs out there.” The expression to “rain cats and dogs” means to rain very heavily – to rain a lot. We might also say to “pour.” Someone will say “It’s pouring out there,” meaning it’s raining very hard. I’m not sure why we say “cats and dogs,” but that’s the expression: “to rain cats and dogs.”

Margo says, “Somebody in this office must have an umbrella you can borrow. I’ll go see” – I’ll investigate. Ali says, “Thanks. It looks like it’s only drizzling now.” To “drizzle” (drizzle) means to rain very lightly or only very slightly. Another verb we use is to “sprinkle,” when it isn’t raining hard; it’s the opposite of “raining cats and dogs,” but it’s still raining. Ali says, “Maybe it’s letting up.” To “let up” is a two-word phrasal verb meaning to gradually decrease, to slowly become less and less intense. So, if you say, “the rain is letting up,” you mean that it is getting less and less severe – it’s raining less and less.

Margo says, “Don’t count on it.” The expression to “count on” something means to depend on something or to rely on something; to believe that something is true in this case, to believe that something will happen. Margo says, “It’ll be pouring again in a minute (it will be raining very hard again in a minute – in a very short time). Let me see if I can round up an umbrella and maybe even a raincoat.” To “round up” is another two-word phrasal verb meaning to find something or to get something. You go look for something, and then you find it. We usually use this expression when you’re not sure where something is; it’s not normally a big thing – “to round up” something. That verb, “to round up,” has a couple of different meanings in English; once again, take a look at the Learning Guide for some additional explanations on that phrasal verb.

Margo says maybe she can even find a raincoat. A “raincoat” is a rain jacket; it’s something you wear over your regular clothing to keep you dry. Ali says, “Thanks. I’ll be in the bathroom wringing out my clothes.” To “wring (wring) out” something, or to “wring something out,” is, once again, a two-word verb – a phrasal verb. It means to take a wet piece of clothing or a towel and turn your hands in opposite directions so that the clothes or the towel becomes tighter and tighter, and as you do this, as you are twisting the piece of clothing, water will come out of it. It’s a way of getting water out of something that is wet, out of a fabric.

At the end Ali says, “What a miserable day!” Something that is “miserable” is very unhappy or very uncomfortable. You can also use that word to mean “displeased,” unhappy about something that someone has done. “It’s raining, and now I’m miserable.” “My wife left me, and now I’m miserable” – or very happy, it depends, really, on who your wife is. In my case, I would be miserable, of course!

Now let’s listen to the dialogue, this time at a normal speed.

[start of dialogue]

Margo: Oh geez, you’re drenched! It wasn’t supposed to rain today.

Ali: I know. I looked at the weather report last night and it was supposed to be a nice day. That’s the last time I trust those weathercasters! I hate getting caught in the rain. I’m soaking wet.

Margo: When I felt a raindrop on my head this morning, I should have known that we were in for a big rainstorm. Right then, I should have gone back into my house to get an umbrella, but as usual, I was running late.

Ali: I can’t believe I have to go out on sales calls today. I’m not looking forward to getting back in my car when it’s raining cats and dogs out there.

Margo: Somebody in this office must have an umbrella you can borrow for the day. I’ll go see.

Ali: Thanks. It looks like it’s only drizzling now. Maybe it’s letting up.

Margo: Don’t count on it. It’ll be pouring again in a minute. Let me see if I can round up an umbrella and maybe even a raincoat.

Ali: Thanks. I’ll be in the bathroom wringing out my clothes. What a miserable day!

[end of dialogue]

The script for this episode was written by Dr. Lucy Tse. Thank you Lucy!

From Los Angeles, California, I’m Jeff McQuillan. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next time on ESL Podcast.

English as a Second Language Podcast is written and produced by Dr. Lucy Tse, hosted by Dr. Jeff McQuillan. This podcast is copyright 2007.

Glossary
drenched – soaked; very wet

* You’re drenched! What did you do, jump into a lake?


weather report – forecast; information about what the weather will probably be like later in the day or in the near future

* According to the weather report, tomorrow should be sunny and windy.


weathercaster – a person who reports the expected weather on TV or radio

* The weathercaster on this news program is correct about 80% of the time.


to get caught in – to be surprised by something; to have something happen (especially weather) when one is not expecting it

* They were very scared when they got caught in a snowstorm in the mountains and didn’t have enough warm clothes.


soaking – drenched; very wet

* These towels are still soaking. Please put them in the dryer for another 30 minutes.


raindrop – one drop (piece) of rain; a small ball of water that falls from the sky

* A few raindrops fell onto the car’s window, but then it became sunny again.


rainstorm – a storm with a lot of rain; weather where it rains heavily for a period of time

* The shoppers waited by the store’s door until the rainstorm had stopped, and then they went to their cars.


umbrella – an object made from folding metal pieces that are covered with fabric or plastic and can be pushed out and held over one’s head to keep one dry when it is raining

* Do you prefer to use an umbrella or wear a raincoat?


to rain cats and dogs – to rain heavily; to rain very much; to pour

* Charlene made her children play inside when it was raining cats and dogs.


to drizzle – to sprinkle; to rain only very slightly

* Don’t worry! It’s only drizzling, so we won’t get too wet.


to let up – to gradually decrease; to slowly become less intense or less serious

* The government is finally starting to let up its import restrictions.

to count on (something) – to depend on something; to believe that something will happen

* I’m counting on you to remember to pick up the kids after school today.


to pour – to rain very heavily; to rain very much

* It’s pouring outside! I’m not sure I want to drive two hours in this rain.


to round up (something) – to look for, find, and get something

* Were you able to round up enough chairs for all of your guests last night?


raincoat – rain jacket; a piece of clothing that is worn over one’s regular clothing and made from a special fabric that keeps one dry when it is raining

* This raincoat keeps me dry, but it doesn’t keep me very warm, so I have to wear a sweater under it.


to wring out (something) – to hold a wet piece of fabric or clothing at one end in each hand and turn each hand in the opposite direction, so that the fabric becomes tighter and the water falls out

* If you wring out the towel before you hang it, it will dry much more quickly.


miserable – very unhappy, uncomfortable, and displeased

* After 27 hours in a bus, we were miserable and we wanted to get off, take a shower, and rest.

Comprehension Questions
1. What does Ali mean when he says, “I hate getting caught in the rain”?
a) He hates it when the weathercasters say there will be rain.
b) He hates being outside when it starts to rain.
c) He hates catching balls when it is raining.

2. What is Margo going to do when she rounds up an umbrella?
a) She will make a square umbrella become round.
b) She will take an umbrella around the building.
c) She will look for an umbrella that Ali can use.

Answers at bottom.

What Else Does It Mean?
soaking

The word “soaking,” in this podcast, means drenched or very wet: “You’re soaking! Change into dry clothes quickly, or you might get sick.” As a verb, “to soak” means to make someone or something very wet: “The storm soaked everyone who was at the stadium.” The verb “to soak” can also mean to put something in a container with water or another liquid so that it becomes totally wet: “This recipe says that we should soak the oats in milk for 20 minutes.” Or, “Janice’s feet hurt at the end of the day, so she soaked them in warm water until she felt better.” The phrase “to soak something up” means to place a paper or cloth towel over a liquid so that the liquid enters the paper or cloth towel: “When the boy spilled his soda, his aunt quickly soaked it up with a napkin.”

to round up

In this podcast, the phrase “to round up” means to look for, find, and get something: “The library is trying to round up 1,000 new books this summer.” The phrase “to round up/down” means to change a number to the next higher/lower number, usually that ends in a zero or five: “The number 73 can be rounded up to 75 or rounded down to 70.” The phrase “to round (something) off” means to make the sharp edges of something smooth or rounded: “Maggie was always accidentally hitting her hand against the sharp edge of the table, so she decided to ask a carpenter to round it off.” The phrase “to make the rounds” means to go to many different places, often at work or a party: “The doctor is making the rounds, checking on his patients.” Or, “Let’s make the rounds to meet the other guests.”

Culture Note
The National Weather Service (NWS) is part of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which is an American governmental “agency” (large department). NWS provides weather “forecasts” (predictions, or statements about what will probably happen in the future) for the United States. NWS has a large “database” (a large collection of electronic information) about weather and it is available to the “public” (ordinary citizens) and other government agencies.

The NWS website at www.weather.gov has many maps and “up-to-the-minute” (updated, current) information about the weather. NWS “issues” (announces or provides) “warnings” (statements that make people aware of a danger and prepare them for it) during dangerous weather, like storms and hurricanes.

NWS “gathers” (collects or gets) information about the weather in many different ways. Some of the information comes from “satellites” (large piece of equipment that go around the planet and send information back to Earth). Other information comes from land-based “weather stations” (small buildings with many tools for measuring temperature, rainfall, wind, etc.).

NWS has a lot of information about historical weather “patterns” (the ways that things behave over time) for the nation, individual states, and local areas. It can be interesting to read about the highest and lowest temperatures for a particular area, or the “frequency” (how often something happens) of storms.

Finally, NWS has maps of “air quality” (how clean the air is), showing which states and cities have the worst “air pollution” (contamination of the air; air with many dangerous chemicals in it). It issues warnings when the air quality is too poor, telling people that they should stay at home on those days.

Comprehension Answers
1 - b

2 - c