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04 Doing Hair and Getting Dressed

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GLOSSARY

gel – a thick liquid, usually for one’s hair or skin
* Henry washes himself with a bar of soap but his wife prefers to use shower gel.

volume – the amount of space that something fills; for hair, appearing thicker and fuller
* My hair is always so straight and flat. I wish it were curly and had more volume.

bangs – the short hair hanging over the forehead (the area above the eyes)
* Her bangs are too long. They’re hanging in front of her eyes and they make it difficult for her to see.

to brush – to make one’s hair smooth by using a hairbrush
* In many stories, princesses brush their hair 100 times before going to bed.

hairspray – a liquid sprayed on one’s hair to hold it in the style that one wants
* He put on so much hairspray that his hair didn’t move when the wind blew.

closet – a very small room or a piece of furniture for storing clothes and shoes
* This closet is very well organized. All of the clothes are separated by color and style.

skirt – a woman’s piece of clothing that hangs from the waist with only one opening for both legs
* In the 1800’s, women wore long skirts, but now, short skirts are more common.

blouse – a woman’s shirt with a collar and buttons down the front
* She dresses casually most days but always wears professional-looking blouses and skirts to important office meetings.

casual – informal; not formal
* I like to wear casual clothes on weekends because they are so comfortable.

suit – a jacket and a matching pair or pants or skirt, worn for office work
* The only thing he doesn’t like about being a banker is that he has to wear a suit to work every day.

jeans – pants made from heavy denim fabric, usually in blue or black
* I recommend wearing jeans to go horseback riding. They are tough but comfortable.

sweater – a heavy, knitted shirt made of cotton or wool yarn (material that looks like a thick string)
* This sweater my mother made for me is really warm so I wear it often during the winter.

t-shirt – a comfortable, casual, short-sleeved cotton shirt, often with a design or logo on the front
* All of the runners in the race will get t-shirts with the race logo on the front to keep as souvenirs.

shorts – pants with short legs, cut above the knee
* It’s too hot to wear pants, but if I wear shorts, I’m afraid that insects will bite my legs.

dresser – a piece of furniture that is used for storing clothing
* When the dresser is empty, we know it’s time to do laundry.

drawer – a box that pulls out of a desk or another piece of furniture and is used to store objects
* All of their pens and pencils are in the top drawer of that desk.

pantyhose – a thin piece of black or skin-colored clothing worn over a woman’s legs and waist, usually with a suit, skirt, or dress
* Pantyhose are so uncomfortable! I always take them off as soon as I get home.

tennis shoes – athletic shoes; comfortable shoes with shoelaces (strings) holding them closed
* In Washington, DC, many women wear tennis shoes on the subway and then change into nicer shoes at the office.

heels – women’s formal shoes with a stick under the back of the shoe to make one seem taller
* The model was wearing very high heels when she fell down and hurt her ankle.

COMPLETE TRANSCRIPT

This is ESLPod.com's "A Day in the Life of Lucy," episode four: Doing Hair and Getting Dressed.

I'm your host, Dr. Jeff McQuillan, from the Center for Educational Development in beautiful Los Angeles, California. In episode three, Lucy ate breakfast; in this episode, she does her hair and gets dressed. Let's start.

[Start of story]

I go back into the bathroom to finish doing my hair. Before I put the hot curlers in, I had put a little gel in my hair to give it some volume. I also like to use my hairdryer to give my bangs a little more shape. I take out the curlers one by one and brush through them into the style I like. I finish it off with a little hairspray and I’m ready to get dressed.

In my bedroom, I look in my closet for a skirt and blouse to match. The office I work in is pretty casual so I don’t need to wear a suit to work. On Fridays, we’re allowed to be even more casual so most people wear jeans and sweaters to the office, but no one dares to show up in t-shirts and shorts. I put on the skirt and blouse and open the top dresser drawer to get some pantyhose. I wish I could wear my tennis shoes to work, but I pick out a pair of heels and put them on. I was ready to go.

[End of story]

Episode four is entitled "Doing Hair and Getting Dressed." Lucy begins by going "into the bathroom to finish doing" her "hair." To do your hair means to make your hair look nice. We may also say, "to fix your hair," but the most common expression is "to do your hair." Well, if you remember from a previous episode, Lucy had put hot curlers, or hot rollers. A roller, "roller," is another name for a curler, and those are things that women put in their hair so that their hair is not straight, it has curls in it.

Lucy now needs "to finish doing" her "hair." She says that "Before" she "put the hot rollers," or the hot curlers, "in," she "had put a little gel in" her "hair to give it some extra volume." Gel, "gel," is a thick liquid that you put on your hair. Sometimes you put it on your hair because you want your hair to go in a certain way - you want it to be flat, for example, you put the gel on top. It's a thick liquid.

When I was in high school, back in the 1950s, it was very popular for high school students to have gel - a type of gel in their hair. Maybe one of the more famous movies in the United States about 1950s and 1960s in high school was called Grease, "Grease." And in Grease, which starred, I think, Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta - I'm not sure, I, as a man, have not watched it as much as most American girls and women have - but in the movie, I remember that the boys had gel - a type of gel on their hair to make it very flat on their head.

Getting back to Lucy, she says that she "put a little gel in" her "hair to give it some" extra "volume." Volume, "volume," means she made it thicker, or fuller, or bigger. To add volume to your hair means to make it thicker.

She also likes "to use" her "hair dryer to give" her "bangs a little more shape." Bangs, "bangs," (always plural) is the hair that is on the part of your head above your eyes, between your eyes and the top of your head. We call that part of your head your forehead, "forehead." So, bangs are hair that goes over your forehead.

Lucy is trying "to give" her "bangs little more shape," that is she doesn't want them just flat; she wants to give them a different shape than what they have right now. So, she takes "out the curlers," meaning she removes the curlers from her hair, "one by one" and brushes her hair into the style that she likes. To brush, "brush," as a verb, means to take something and put it through your hair so that your hair goes in a certain direction. The noun brush, "brush," is the thing that you put in your hair. We also use the word brush for someone who is painting. The thing you use to put paint on wall or on a picture; that would be also called a brush, a paintbrush. This is a hairbrush.

Lucy likes to "finish it off," meaning she likes to finish doing her hair, "with a little hairspray." Hairspray, "hairspray," (one word) is liquid that you put on a large area. In order to make the liquid go in a larger area, you spray it on, and you spray it by using something called a nozzle. The bottle that has the hairspray, on the top has a nozzle, "nozzle," and a nozzle is something that takes the liquid and spreads it out - puts it over a wider area.

So, this is hairspray that Lucy is putting on her head. It's a liquid that keeps the hair in the same place so that if you go outside in the wind, your hair doesn't get, we'd say, messed up. To mess, "mess," up your hair means that your hair goes in a different style or it moves so that it doesn't look good. Again, if you don't have hair like me, you don't have to worry about this!

Lucy goes into her bedroom and looks in her closet for a skirt and a blouse to wear. A closet, "closet," is a space in your bedroom where you can keep your clothes. The clothes that you put in a closet are usually ones that you hang, "hang." To hang your clothes means to put them on something so that the
clothes are not folded, they are vertical and they are hanging down from a bar - a pole that is at the top of your closet. The thing you put your clothes on is called a hanger, "hanger."

So, you put your clothes, or you hang your clothes on a clothes hanger, and you put them into your closet. Closets can also just be places to store things - to keep things. It's like a big box in your room, but it's very tall, usually as tall as the person or taller.

In Lucy's closet, she's looking for a skirt and a blouse that match. Remember, to match means the clothes have the similar or same colors. A skirt, "skirt," is a piece of clothing that goes around a woman's waist - in the middle of her body - and then it goes down and covers the top of her legs, or perhaps all of her legs. You can have a long skirt that goes all the way down to the bottom of your leg; you could have a short skirt that goes up only covering the top of your legs.

Lucy's looking for a skirt and a blouse. A blouse, "blouse," is a special kind of shirt that a woman wears. Usually it is a shirt that has a collar, "collar," on the top. A collar is the part of the shirt near the neck, and it makes the shirt look a little more formal. A woman's blouse also usually has buttons in the front so that when you put the blouse on, you put the buttons together to keep the shirt on your body. We say you fasten the buttons, "fasten." You fasten the buttons so that the shirt stays on. Buttons are little pieces of plastic or metal that go usually through a hole and that keeps the shirt on. A men's formal shirt would also have buttons and a collar; for a woman, we call it a blouse.

Lucy says, "The office" she works "in is pretty casual," or very casual. To be casual, "casual," means to be less formal - to be informal - to be more relaxed. Because Lucy works in an office that is casual, she doesn't "need to wear a suit to work." A suit "suit," for a woman is a formal piece, or a formal set of clothing, usually with a blouse, and then you have a jacket over the blouse, and then you have a nice skirt or pants that go with the jacket; this is a suit. For men, when they wear a suit, usually they have shirt, pants, jacket, and a tie.

Lucy says that "On Fridays," she is "allowed to be even more casual," and many people at her work "wear jeans and sweaters to the office." To wear means to have on your body. Jeans, "jeans," are a popular type of informal pants.

Perhaps the most famous type of jeans are Levi's, and they're usually blue, and sometimes black. Sweaters, "sweaters," are like very warm shirts - shirts that
keep you warm. Often, you put a shirt on and then if you are cold you put a sweater on top of your shirt.

Lucy says, "no one dares to show up in t-shirts and shorts." The expression to dare, "dare," to do something means that no one attempts to do that. The verb, to dare to, means that it is something that you shouldn't do or it is something that is risky, you could get in trouble. Your mother may say, "Don't you dare go to the movies tonight," she would mean you better not - you are not allowed to go to the movie, if you do, you will be in big trouble - you will have a lot of problems from me.

Well, the story says that "no one" at Lucy's work "dares to show up" or to go to work "in t-shirts and shorts." T-shirts, "t-shirts," are shirts that you wear that don't have a collar that are very informal. Shorts, "shorts," are like pants but they do not go to the bottom of your leg. They only go and cover the top of your leg, those would be shorts.

Lucy puts "on a skirt and a blouse and opens the top dresser drawer to get some pantyhose." A dresser, "dresser," is a place where you can keep clothing such as socks, underwear, shirts, perhaps some pants. You have to fold your clothes up - you have to put the clothes together and put them in the drawer.
Remember, in the closet, you hang your clothes often; in a dresser, you put your clothes in a little box, which we call a drawer, "drawer." So, a dresser is a piece of furniture that has several drawers, or several boxes that you can pull out and put clothing into.

Pantyhose, "pantyhose," (one word) is like a combination of a pair of pants and a sock. It's something that women put on. Usually it goes over their feet and goes all the way up to their waist, and then they put a skirt on so that it covers the top part of their legs. Again, this is something only worn by a woman. Pantyhose are usually a color that is brown or a color of your skin, and they're a more formal type of clothing. You would use pantyhose for going to a business meeting if you were a woman. If you were a man, you wouldn't wear pantyhose unless you wanted to look like a woman, but that's a different story!

Lucy says she wishes she "could wear" her "tennis shoes to work." She wishes she could is a conditional construction, "I wish I could." I wish I could wear my tennis shoes." Tennis, "tennis," is, you probably know, a sport, but tennis shoes are the kinds of shoes you wear to go running or to play sports or to walk around your neighborhood, you would put on tennis shoes.

Lucy can't "wear tennis shoes to work," so she has to "pick out," or select, "a pair of heels" to put on. Heels, "heels," refers here to a pair of shoes that have a little stick at the back of the shoe that makes the woman taller. We sometimes called these high heels. So, Lucy puts on a pair of high heels, or a pair of heels, and now she's ready to go to work.

Now let's listen to the story, this time at a normal speed.

[Start of story]

I go back into the bathroom to finish doing my hair. Before I put the hot curlers in, I had put a little gel in my hair to give it some volume. I also like to use my hairdryer to give my bangs a little more shape. I take out the curlers one by one and brush through them into the style I like. I finish it off with a little hairspray and I’m ready to get dressed.

In my bedroom, I look in my closet for a skirt and blouse to match. The office I work in is pretty casual so I don’t need to wear a suit to work. On Fridays, we’re allowed to be even more casual so most people wear jeans and sweaters to the office, but no one dares to show up in t-shirts and shorts. I put on the skirt and blouse and open the top dresser drawer to get some pantyhose. I wish I could wear my tennis shoes to work, but I pick out a pair of heels and put them on. I was ready to go.

[End of story]

We've come to the end of episode four of "A Day in the Life of Lucy: Doing Hair and Getting Dressed." In episode five, Lucy takes public transportation to work.

This course has been a production of the Center for Educational Development, in beautiful Los Angeles, California. Visit our website at eslpod.com.

This course was produced by Dr. Jeff McQuillan and Dr. Lucy Tse. Copyright 2006.