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0493 Ordering at a Sandwich Shop

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Complete Transcript
Welcome to English as a Second Language Podcast number 493: Ordering at a Sandwich Shop.

This is English as a Second Language Podcast episode 493. I’m your host, Dr. Jeff McQuillan, coming to you from the Center for Educational Development in beautiful Los Angeles, California.

Our website is eslpod.com. Go there to download a Learning Guide for this episode, an 8- to 10-page guide that contains all of the vocabulary, definitions, sample sentences, additional definitions, cultural notes, comprehension questions, and a complete transcript of everything we say on this episode.

This episode is a dialogue between someone who works at a “sandwich shop,” a restaurant that sells sandwiches, and a customer named Jared. Let’s get started.

[start of dialogue]

Employee: Welcome to Grubway. What can I get for you?

Jared: I’m still deciding. I’m trying to lose weight and I hear that eating a sandwich for lunch every day will help me do that. Do you guys have a BLT or a club?

Employee: We don’t have a BLT, but we do have a ham or turkey club.

Jared: Okay, I’ll take the club.

Employee: Ham or turkey?

Jared: Can I get half and half, or better yet, can I get double ham and double turkey?

Employee: Sure, no problem.

Jared: I’d like cheese on that, too.

Employee: Would you like your bread toasted and the cheese melted?

Jared: Uh, sure.

Employee: What else would you like on your sandwich, the works?

Jared: What comes with the works?

Employee: It includes lettuce, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, olives, and pickles, and any spreads, condiments, or seasonings you’d like.

Jared: Oh, okay. I’ll have the works, but hold the pickles and olives. I’d like mayonnaise on the side, too, please. You know what? I’d like to add some chicken to that.

Employee: That’ll be $1.20 additional.

Jared: That’s fine. I’d also like extra cheese, and why don’t you add some roast beef, too?

Employee: Okay, I can do that. Will that be all?

Jared: Yeah, but while you’re at it, throw in two bags of chips and a couple of cookies.

Employee: Okay, I can ring you up down here.

Jared: Hey, tell me, how long before I start losing weight?

Employee: Well, that’s hard to say. You may want to look at the nutritional information chart to determine that.

Jared: Nah, I can already feel the pounds coming off!

[end of dialogue]

Our dialogue begins with the employee at the sandwich shop saying to Jared, the customer, “Welcome to Grubway.” There’s a famous sandwich shop here in the United States called Subway. It’s a chain; that is, there are many different restaurants like this where you can go and order a sandwich. You can either eat it at the restaurant or do what most people do, which is have it “to go,” meaning you take it with you.

The employee asks Jared, “What can I get for you (what kind of sandwich do you want)?” Jared says, “I’m still deciding (I’m still thinking about it),” he says, “I’m trying to lose weight and I hear that eating a sandwich for lunch every day will help me do that.” A few years ago, this chain of sandwich shops, Subway, had a famous commercial where they had one of their customers, whose name was Jared, come on and say that he lost weight because the only thing that he ate for a month or two months, or however long it was, was the Subway sandwiches. So Jared is, in our dialogue, thinking about the same thing. He says, “Do you guys have a BLT or a club?” “Guys,” here, is informal, meaning do you, people who work here. He’s talking to a woman, so we use the term “guys” (plural) to refer often to both men and women, boys and girls together.

A “BLT” is a sandwich with bacon, lettuce, and tomato. BTL – bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich; obviously there’s bread with the sandwich. A “club sandwich” is a sandwich that is made from three slices – three pieces of bread, and two or more different kinds of meat. Usually there’s lettuce and tomatoes and mayonnaise, perhaps other food in there; but it’s three pieces of bread, and then two different types or more of meat inside the sandwich. Usually it’s something like ham or turkey, perhaps chicken.

The employee says, “We don’t have a BLT, but we do have a ham or turkey club. Jared says, “Okay, I’ll take the club,” meaning that’s what I want to order. The employee says, “Ham or turkey?” Jared then says, “Can I get half and half?” “Half and half” means 50 percent of one thing and 50 percent of another. If you’re going to dinner with a vegetarian and you’re going to have, say, pizza, you might say, “Well, let’s get a pizza half and half, half vegetarian and half pepperoni.” I’ll eat the pepperoni side!

Well, Jared wants the sandwich half and half, half turkey half ham, and then he says, “or better yet, can I get double ham and double turkey?” “Double” means twice as much as normal. “Double” has a couple of different meanings however. You can take a look at our Learning Guide for some additional explanations of those additional meanings.

The employee says, “Sure, no problem.” Jared says, “I’d like cheese on that, too.” The employee then asks, “Would you like your bread toasted and the cheese melted?” “To toast bread” means to make it brown and slightly hard; you put it next to a source of high heat, or you put it in a little machine called a “toaster.” “Melted” means that something is solid that becomes more like liquid. If you take a piece of cheese and put on a sandwich and then heat it, the cheese will melt.

Jared says, “Uh, sure. The employee then says, “What else would you like on your sandwich, the works?” When you order a sandwich or a hamburger and somebody asks if you want “the works” – or a hot dog, thinking of fast foods – what they mean is that they will give you everything possible, everything that you could get on the hamburger, sandwich, or hot dog. Well, Jared says, “What comes with the works?” meaning what does that include. The employee says, “It includes lettuce, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, olives, and pickles, and any spreads, condiments, or seasonings you’d like.” A “spread” is a soft food or a thick liquid that you put on bread in a thin layer. For example, you can use strawberry jelly or strawberry jam; that could be used as a spread. You can make your own spread out of mayonnaise and perhaps some other food and put that on a sandwich. A “condiment” is a powder or a liquid that is added to food to give it more taste. The word “seasonings” is a powder or a dry herb, which is a small plant, that you add to something to give it more flavor. So for example, basil and oregano are two common seasonings in food.

Jared says, “Oh, okay. I’ll have the works,” meaning I want to order a sandwich with everything on it – the works. “But,” he says, “hold the pickles and olives.” When you are ordering food and you use the expression “hold,” such as “hold the pickles,” or “hold the lettuce,” you’re telling the employee – the waiter or waitress that you don’t want have something that is normally part of that dish – that is normally part of that meal. So if you are having, say, a cheeseburger that normally comes with lettuce, you might say, “I want one cheeseburger, hold the lettuce,” meaning don’t give me the lettuce. There was a famous television commercial when I was young, before the Internet was born, that had a song that was part of the commercial, and for some reason I have this weird memory of songs that are part of commercials or television programs, I’m not sure why. Anyway, the song for the commercial, what we would call the “jingle,” was: [Jeff sings]

Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce,

Special orders don’t upset us.

All we ask is that you let us have it your way.

Have it your way,

Have it your way at Burger King.

Thank you! “Have it your way” means you can have your sandwich however you want. It was an advertisement for a hamburger restaurant called Burger King, which is still in existence, although they don’t use that commercial anymore and haven’t since the 1970s.

Jared, continuing on with our story, wants the works, but he wants the pickles and olives held – he wants them to hold the pickles and olives. He says, “I’d like mayonnaise on the side, too, please.” Mayonnaise “on the side,” meaning separated from the rest of the food. If a sandwich normally has mayonnaise or mustard on it, or any other kind of food, you can ask for it “on the side,” especially if it’s a liquid, that’s the most common use of that.

Then Jared says, “You know what? I’d like to add some chicken to that.” The employee says, “That’ll be $1.20 additional,” meaning extra. Jared says, “That’s fine. I’d also like extra cheese, and why don’t you add some roast beef, too?” meaning please add some roast beef, an additional kind of meat. He says, “while you’re at it, throw in two bags of chips and a couple of cookies.” The expression “while you’re at it” is a phrase used to ask someone to continue something they are doing, but do something additional. Since the employee is getting Jared’s food, he says, “well, while you’re at it (since you are doing it anyway), also throw in (meaning include; add) two bags of chips (potato chips) and a couple of cookies.”

Then Jared asks, “how long before I start losing weight?” Well, of course, Jared has added all this extra food to the sandwich, so he probably won’t be losing any weight. The employee says, “that’s hard to say (that’s difficult to determine). You may want to look at the nutritional information chart to determine that.” The “nutritional information” is the information about how many calories, how much fat, how much sodium a food contains.

Jared says, “Nah (meaning ‘no’), I can already feel the pounds coming off!” “To come off” means to, in this case, reduce or become less. So he’s saying he can already feel the pounds, his extra weight in his body, coming off – disappearing. “To come” is used with lots of different prepositions as a phrasal verb; take a look at our Learning Guide for some additional explanations.

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

[start of dialogue]

Employee: Welcome to Grubway. What can I get for you?

Jared: I’m still deciding. I’m trying to lose weight and I hear that eating a sandwich for lunch every day will help me do that. Do you guys have a BLT or a club?

Employee: We don’t have a BLT, but we do have a ham or turkey club.

Jared: Okay, I’ll take a club.

Employee: Ham or turkey?

Jared: Can I get half and half, or better yet, can I get double ham and double turkey?

Employee: Sure, no problem.

Jared: I’d like cheese on that, too.

Employee: Would you like your bread toasted and the cheese melted?

Jared: Uh, sure.

Employee: What else would you like on your sandwich, the works?

Jared: What comes with the works?

Employee: It includes lettuce, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, olives, and pickles, and any spreads, condiments, or seasonings you’d like.

Jared: Oh, okay. I’ll have the works, but hold the pickles and olives. I’d like mayonnaise on the side, too, please. You know what? I’d like to add some chicken to that.

Employee: That’ll be $1.20 additional.

Jared: That’s fine. I’d also like extra cheese, and why don’t you add some roast beef, too?

Employee: Okay, I can do that. Will that be all?

Jared: Yeah, but while you’re at it, throw in two bags of chips and a couple of cookies.

Employee: Okay, I can ring you up down here.

Jared: Hey, tell me, how long before I start losing weight?

Employee: Well, that’s hard to say. You may want to look at the nutritional information chart to determine that.

Jared: Nah, I can already feel the pounds coming off!

[end of dialogue]

Giving you double the fun with her dialogues is Dr. Lucy Tse. Thank you, Lucy.

From Los Angeles, California, I’m Jeff McQuillan. Thank you for listening. Come back and listen to us next time on ESL Podcast.

English as a Second Language Podcast is written and produced by Dr. Lucy Tse, hosted by Dr. Jeff McQuillan, copyright 2009 by the Center for Educational Development.

Glossary
BLT – a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich

* Damien wanted to make a BLT for lunch, but he didn’t have any lettuce.


club – a sandwich made with three slices of bread and two or more meats, among other things

* She ordered a turkey club sandwich, but it was so big that she could eat only half of it.


half and half – with 50% of one thing and 50% of another thing

* They couldn’t agree on which kind of pizza to get, so they ordered one half and half: half of the pizza was pepperoni and the other half was vegetarian.


double – with twice as much as normal; with 200% of something

* Whenever Mike orders spaghetti, he asks for double meatballs.


toasted – brown and crunchy because something has been next to a source of high heat for a short period of time, usually used to talk about bread

* This bread tastes much better when it’s toasted and covered in butter.


melted – like a liquid because something that used to be solid has been heated

* Did you know you have melted ice cream on your chin and shirt?


the works – with everything that has been listed; with everything that is being offered

* They went to the spa and got the works: manicures, pedicures, facials, haircuts, and massages.


spread – a soft food or thick liquid that is put onto bread in a thin layer

* Strawberry jam is Jewel’s favorite spread on these muffins.


condiment – a powder or liquid that is added to other foods to give them more flavor

* The grocery store keeps mayonnaise near other condiments, such as ketchup and mustard.


seasoning – a powder or dried herb (small plant) that is added to other foods to give them a better, more interesting flavor

* Basil and oregano are common seasonings in Italian food.


hold the (something) – a phrase used to show that one does not want to have or receive something, especially when it is normally offered or given

* I’d like an ice cream sundae, please, but hold the peanuts. I’m allergic to them.


on the side – separated from one’s other foods, not put on top of it

* Carrie ordered a green salad with ranch dressing on the side.


additional – more; extra

* It costs $3.50 to rent a movie for one night, but you’ll have to pay an additional $1.75 for each extra day that you keep it.


while you’re at it – a phrase used to ask someone to continue what he or she is doing, or to do more of what he or she is already doing

* You’re doing a great job of cleaning the bathroom! While you’re at it, could you please clean the kitchen, too?


throw in – include; add

* If you buy these knives right now, we’ll throw in a serving spoon, absolutely free. What a great deal!


nutritional information – information about what one is eating, including how many calories it has, how much fat and sodium it contains, and which vitamins it has

* Why didn’t you read the nutritional information before you bought this package? Just one cookie has more than 40% of the calories you need in an entire day!


to come off – to reduce or disappear, often used when talking about losing weight

* Ingrid became very careful about what she was eating, but the pounds didn’t really start to come off until she started exercising every morning.

Comprehension Questions
1. How will Jared’s sandwich be served?
a) Cold.
b) Hot.
c) Burnt.

2. What does Jared say about the pickles?
a) He doesn’t want any pickles.
b) He wants pickles.
c) He wants extra pickles.

Answers at bottom.

What Else Does It Mean?
double

The word “double,” in this podcast, means with 200% of something, or twice as much as normal: “Vladimir ordered a mocha with a double shot of espresso.” The word “double” can also be used to talk about something that has two identical or similar parts: “Walk through the double doors into the main lobby.” A “double feature” happens at the movie theater when one can see two movies, one after another, by purchasing only one ticket: “Do you want to go see the double feature with me on Tuesday?” Finally, the phrase “double digits” is used to talk about any number from 10 to 99: “The company is growing very quickly and now its number of employees is in the double digits.”

coming off

In this podcast, the phrase “to come off” means to reduce or disappear, often used when talking about losing weight: “I wish there were a magic pill that would make these extra pounds come off.” The phrase “to come undone” means to open or to become loose: “Your shoelace has come undone. Be careful you don’t fall down.” The phrase “to come back” means to return: “I have to go home now, but I’ll come back here at the same time tomorrow.” The phrase “to come clean” means to confess or to tell the truth, especially about something bad that one has done: “He finally came clean and admitted that he had stolen the money.” Finally, the question “come again?” is used to ask someone to repeat something: “Come again? I didn’t hear what you said.”

Culture Note
Americans often eat sandwiches for lunch. One common sandwich is a “submarine sandwich,” usually known as a “sub,” “hoagie,” “grinder,” or another name, depending on what part of the country you are in. A submarine sandwich is made by cutting a long “roll” (a type of bread) of French or Italian bread in half and filling it with meat, cheese, vegetables, and condiments. One popular type of submarine sandwich is a “meatball sub,” where a meatball is a large ball of ground beef that has been flavored with “spices” (seasonings) and covered with tomato sauce. A meatball sub might have three large meatballs and a lot of tomato sauce.

A “Reuben sandwich” is made on toasted rye bread that is filled with “corned beef” (a type of salty beef), cheese, and “Thousand Island dressing” (a thick sauce usually put on green salads).

“Sloppy Joes” are also popular sandwiches, although they are more common at dinnertime than lunchtime. A sloppy Joe is made by cooking “ground beef” (beef in very small pieces, usually used to make hamburgers) in a tomato sauce and then putting it on a “hamburger bun” (the round rolls normally used for hamburgers). The sandwich is called a “sloppy Joe” because it is impossible to eat it without getting “sloppy” (very messy), since the hamburger and sauce falls out as you eat the sandwich.

Finally, the “Philadelphia cheesesteak,” or “Philly cheesesteak,” is a special sandwich that originated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is made with a long roll like a submarine sandwich, but it is filled with thin slices of “steak” (high-quality beef) that are covered with melted cheese.

Comprehension Answers
1 - b

2 - a