046 Topics: Business cards in the US, nationalities in English, dry-eyed, killer app
时间：2018-05-01 访问量：1857 View PDF
You're listening to English as a Second Language Podcast English Café number 46.
This is the English Café episode number 46. I'm your host, Dr. Jeff McQuillan, coming to you from the Center for Educational Development in beautiful Los Angeles, California.
On today's Café we're going to talk about business cards, what you put on a business card in the United States. We're also going to talk about nationalities, where people are from and the words we use to describe people from different countries. And as always, we'll answer a few questions. Now, let's get started.
Our first topic today is business cards. These are the cards that people who work for different companies or different organizations give each other, and it has their personal information on it. I thought I would talk a little bit about what goes on an American business card, what we call certain parts of the card.
The most important information is, of course, your name, who you are. Usually, on a business card below your name, underneath your name, there is your title. Your "title" is your position, what you do, what is your job in the company. If you have a professional degree - if you are, for example, a doctor - a medical doctor or a doctor of philosophy, a Ph.D., then you will put those letters after your name. So, if you are a medical doctor you would say, for example, "Sally Johnson, M.D.," with the M.D. standing for medical doctor. But for most people, you would just have your name and your title underneath.
Of course, other information you would put on a business card would be your telephone number. Usually, people put a telephone number and a fax number. Now it is very common to see a telephone number, a fax number, and a cell number, or cell phone number. The term “cell phone,” you may know, is the same as “mobile phone.” Sometimes on business cards they will abbreviate the telephone number title. So, for example, instead of writing out “fax," it made just say "F" and then the number. So, F 310-555-1212 would be an example of that use of an abbreviation. "C" is cell or cellular phone and "T" would be the telephone that you would talk on.
Another thing that you'll find on an American business card is the logo, the logo of the company or organization that you work for. A "logo" is the little sign or symbol that identifies that company. For ESL Podcast, for example, we have a logo. It says "ESL Pod," it's green, and on a business card, I would put that on my card if I had a business card for ESL Podcast, which I don't.
That leads us to the question of who gets a business card in an American company. Well, definitely the people who are at the top of the company, the executives would get a business card. People who are in sales, who sell things, would get a business card. The original purpose of a business card is to give your information to someone else so they can contact you or call you later, and sales people, of course, need to have that so that people can call them to buy products and services from the company. Other people will also get business cards in organizations. Mostly people who work in offices will get a business card. People who work in more physical jobs, such as manufacturing, making things, the people who are actually in the factory where they make products or they make things that company sells, they may not have business cards. Not everyone who works for an American company gets a business card. It depends on the company. Two other things that go on a business card now would be you or e-mail address and, for most companies, the website of that company.
The size of a business card is usually three and a half inches wide and two inches in terms of the height, or two inches tall. So, three and a half by two inches, that would be about 89 by 51 millimeters, so 89 millimeters across and 51 millimeters from the top to the bottom.
You can give someone a business card at the beginning of the meeting or wait until the end of the meeting. Either way is possible. We often use business cards - some people use business cards - to advertise their product or their service. This is especially common in cafés. Some cafés have a little board where you can put your business card, with a little "pin," the thing that you put into a soft board so it holds the card up. And, you'll often see people such as personal trainers, here in Los Angeles are very common. They will put their card on a local board. A “personal trainer” is the person who helps you at the gym, who helps you, tells you what to do when you are exercising. And in Los Angeles, this is a very common thing that people do. They hire a personal trainer. Other people will also put their cards on these boards to advertise their service.
One thing that you will see in many American restaurants is when you walk into the restaurant, usually at the “host stand,” that is the place where the person who says hello and takes you to your table, that person is called a “host” if it's a man, or a “hostess” if it's a woman - and on the host stand, the place or desk where they are, there's often a bowl. And, it's many times what we would call a “fish bowl,” and it's a small glass bowl that you would normally put little fish in, in water. But, in a restaurant this is usually a place where you can put your business card and every week or every month, the restaurant will have a "drawing," and that means that they pick one of the cards in the bowl and call that person and give them, usually, a free dinner or a free lunch. So, even if you aren't doing business, it's always good to have some business cards with you so you can win a free lunch. That's how I use most of my business cards, since no one really wants my business card to do business!
A second topic we're going to talk about today is nationalities, and nationalities is the word we used to describe where you are from, what country you are from. The word “nation" is the same as country, and “nationalities,” that word, comes from nation. There are a couple things about nationalities in English that are, I think, very confusing and difficult for many people. There is not one rule about how you call someone, how you form the word, or make the word for the nationality. Unfortunately, every country is a little different. It's also important to know the difference between a noun and an adjective when we talk about nationalities.
The noun would be the person from that country and the adjective would be how you would describe someone from that country. So for example, "I'm from the United States," the noun would be American, "I am an American," or "There are three Americans in the restaurant." You can also use the word American as an adjective, "He is an American painter.” “He is an American writer." So, it can be used as an adjective or as a noun. In many countries…for many countries, I should say, in English these are the same words. So, American can be a noun and American can be an adjective.
Another thing to think about when we talk about nationalities is whether it is one person, whether it is singular or plural, if it's a noun. So, for example, "there is one American, there are two Americans," putting an "s" sound at the end.
Well, unfortunately, different countries, as I said before, have different rules - we have different rules, or different ways, that we talk about nationalities. I'm going to talk about some of the most common ways that we form the word for the nationality. Probably the most common way is adding an "an" or an "ian" at the end of a word. So, someone from Canada is called a “Canadian,” we add an "ian." That's both the noun and the adjective. The plural would be Canadians, adding an "s." That pattern, or that format is probably the most common in English, adding an "an" or "ian" and an "s" for plural. Words like this, such as American or Canadian or Columbian, someone from Columbia, usually are the same for the adjective and the noun, that is, it's the same word. So, someone from Peru, for example the country of "Peru," would be called a Peruvian. There it's a little different, there's a "v" that we add, and two people from Peru would be called Peruvians, with an "s."
Now, that's the most common pattern, but it's…there are many other patterns that we also use. For example, someone from Japan is not called a Japanian; we call them Japanese, with an "ese" at the end. And, this is common for several different countries where we add "ese." Now, why "ese?" Well, there isn't necessarily a good reason. Unfortunately, it's just the way that these words have been formed in the past, probably for different reasons. China, for example, the word that we use for China is Chinese. The same would be true for Vietnam. Someone from Vietnam would be Vietnamese. There are also a few other countries, such as the Congo, in Africa, and the Sudan in Africa. Someone from the Congo would be Congolese. Someone from Sudan would be Sudanese. I believe from Nepal, also the country of "Nepal," we also use the "ese."
Now, with the "ese" the adjective and the noun are the same. However, you do not add an "s" at the end. So, you have one Japanese, two Japanese. You don't say Japaneses; you don't put an "s" at the end, that's true for all of the nationalities that end in "ese," Japan, China, Congo, Sudan, and so forth.
Another very common ending for nationalities is "ish." This is an ending that we use for some countries that have the word “land” in them, such as England or Scotland or Finland or Poland. Where you have that "and" at the end, we sometimes use the "ish" for the nationality. So, someone from England is English, someone from Poland is “Polish,” someone from Scotland is "Scottish," someone from Finland it is "Finnish." We also use "ish" for Denmark; someone from Denmark is "Danish." So, those are…that's another way of forming the word.
Now, for these examples, or the "ish" examples, the person, the noun is not always same as the adjective. So, for example, the adjective for someone from England is English, but a person from England, the noun, would be an Englishman or an Englishwoman. From Poland, it's a little different. Someone from Poland, as an adjective we would use Polish, but for the person we would use "Pole," and the plural would be "Poles." So, it's a little different with these endings.
There are many other endings also, for example, some countries we use a "ch" ending. Someone from France is French, for the adjective; for the noun it would be a Frenchman or a Frenchwomen. Someone from the Netherlands would be called "Dutch," and there are other different countries. Unfortunately, there are more than 190 countries, so I can't give you all of the countries. There are some countries where there is no real good way of trying to understand why we call them that particular name. Someone from Spain, for example, as an adjective we would say Spanish, but if it's a person, as a noun, we would say "Spaniard," and the plural would be Spaniards, with an "s."
A few other countries that are very different from these rules would be those from Switzerland, we would say they were "Swiss," that's both the singular and the plural of the noun, and it's also the adjective. Someone from Sweden would be called Swedish with an "ish" as an adjective, but the person is called a "Swede," with an "s" at the end for the plural. And, there are many other examples of this. Someone from Saudi Arabia is normally called a "Saudi." Someone from Thailand would be called a "Thai." Someone from Turkey would be called a "Turk." So, there are many others that we could do, we'd have to spent several hours going through all the countries, but those are some of the most common patterns, the most common ways that we use nationalities in English both as nouns, as adjectives, singular and plural.
Now, let's answer a few questions. Our first question is from "Anna" in Germany. Anna wants to know meaning of the expression, "dry-eyed." “Dry" hyphen "eyed" - what does it mean when we say someone is dry-eyed? Well, "eye," you know is what you look with, what you use to see. When we say someone is dry-eyed this is an expression that means that they are not emotional, that they aren't crying, that they are not affected by something. If you see something that's sad, for example, you might cry, you might have "tears," coming from your eyes. “Tears” is the word we use for the little drops of water that come out of your eye. Well, the opposite of that would be dry-eyed, and it's used to describe someone who is not affected emotionally by something, someone who is not influenced and doesn't have any strong emotional feelings about a certain topic.
"Andrea," from Italy, has a question about the expression "killer app." This is a term that you will see in the computer business, people who are talking about different types of software programs. An "app" is short for “application.” An application is a software program on your computer. Microsoft Word, for example, is an application. Internet Explorer is an application. Well, the short term we used for that is "app." The word “killer,” as an adjective here means great, excellent, wonderful, the best. “It's a killer app” - it's a great application; it's a wonderful program.
Interestingly enough, this word, killer, has another meaning. It can also describe something that is very difficult, something that is very hard to do. For example, "I took a test yesterday with my history professor. It was a killer." Using it as a noun, “it was a killer” means it was very difficult. "It almost killed me," it almost killed me because it was so difficult. So, it can have those two meanings. It can mean great as an adjective, but sometimes, informally, it can also means something that's very difficult. But in the expression killer app, it means it's great or excellent.
If you have a question about something you don't understand in English, email us at email@example.com and we'll try to answer your question here on the Café.
That's all we have time for today. From Los Angeles, California, I'm Jeff McQuillan. Thank you for listening. We'll see you next time on the English Café.
ESL Podcast English Café is written and produced by Dr. Jeff McQuillan. This podcast is copyright 2006, by the Center for Educational Development.
title – the name that describes a person’s job or work
* His title sounds very important but I wonder what he really does in that company.
fax – a document sent electronically through a fax machine
* I need to get that contract today. Can you send it by fax?
logo – a symbol or picture that an organization uses to represent the organization or its products
* To promote the company, let’s put our logo on some t-shirts and hats.
pin – also called a “push pin”; a small piece of metal that is flat on one end, used to attach something to a surface, such as paper to a board
* Do you have enough pins to put up that big sign on the wall?
drawing – the selection of a winner in a game of chance, such as a lottery or a raffle
* This year, they plan to give away a trip to Hawaii at the drawing.
nation – a large group of people who have the same history, culture, language, or background
* The president said that, as a nation, we need to start caring about the environment.
dry-eyed – not emotional; not crying
* I don’t know how she can stay dry-eyed while watching that sad movie.
tears – small drops of liquid that comes out of your eyes when you cry
* I don’t want to see any tears. I’m going away, but I’ll be back.
killer app – a very good computer software program
* I just heard about this new killer app and I can’t wait to download it.
What Insiders Know
Nationalities in English
noun: American Samoan(s)
adjective: American Samoan
Antigua and Barbuda
noun: Antiguan(s), Barbudan(s)
adjective: Antiguan, Barbudan
adjective: Aruban; Dutch
noun: Azerbaijani(s), Azeri(s)
adjective: Azerbaijani, Azeri
noun: Barbadian(s) or Bajan
adjective: Barbadian or Bajan
noun: Beninese (singular and plural)
noun: Bhutanese (singular and plural)
Bosnia and Herzegovina
noun: Bosnian(s), Herzegovinian(s)
adjective: Bosnian, Herzegovinian
noun: Motswana (singular), Batswana (plural)
adjective: Motswana (singular), Batswana (plural)
British Virgin Islands
noun: British Virgin Islander(s)
adjective: British Virgin Islander
noun: Burkinabe (singular and plural)
noun: Burmese (singular and plural)
noun: Cape Verdean(s)
adjective: Cape Verdean
Central African Republic
noun: Central African(s)
adjective: Central African
noun: Chinese (singular and plural)
noun: Christmas Islander(s)
adjective: Christmas Island
Cocos (Keeling) Islands
noun: Cocos Islander(s)
adjective: Cocos Islander
Congo, Democratic Republic of the
noun: Congolese (singular and plural)
adjective: Congolese or Congo
Congo, Republic of the
noun: Congolese (singular and plural)
adjective: Congolese or Congo
noun: Cook Islander(s)
adjective: Cook Islander
noun: Costa Rican(s)
adjective: Costa Rican
noun: Croat(s), Croatian(s)
noun: Equatorial Guinean(s) or Equatoguinean(s)
adjective: Equatorial Guinean or Equatoguinean
Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
noun: Falkland Islander(s)
adjective: Falkland Island
noun: Faroese (singular and plural)
noun: Frenchman(men), Frenchwoman(women)
noun: French Guianese (singular and plural)
adjective: French Guianese
noun: French Polynesian(s)
adjective: French Polynesian
noun: Gabonese (singular and plural)
noun: Guamanian(s) (US citizens)
noun: Channel Islander(s)
adjective: Channel Islander
noun: Guyanese (singular and plural)
Holy See (Vatican City)
noun: Chinese/Hong Konger
adjective: Chinese/Hong Kong
noun: Irishman(men), Irishwoman(women), Irish (collective plural)
Isle of Man
noun: Manxman (men), Manxwoman (women)
noun: Japanese (singular and plural)
noun: Channel Islander(s)
adjective: Channel Islander
noun: I-Kiribati (singular and plural)
noun: Lao(s) or Laotian(s)
adjective: Lao or Laotian
noun: Lebanese (singular and plural)
noun: Mosotho (singular), Basotho (plural)
noun: Malagasy (singular and plural)
noun: Maltese (singular and plural)
noun: Marshallese (singular and plural)
noun: Martiniquais (singular and plural)
noun: Mahorais (singular and plural)
Micronesia, Federated States of
adjective: Micronesian; Chuukese, Kosraen(s), Pohnpeian(s), Yapese
noun: Monegasque(s) or Monacan(s)
adjective: Monegasque or Monacan
noun: Nepalese (singular and plural)
noun: Dutchman(men), Dutchwoman(women)
noun: Dutch Antillean(s)
adjective: Dutch Antillean
noun: New Caledonian(s)
adjective: New Caledonian
noun: New Zealander(s)
adjective: New Zealand
noun: Norfolk Islander(s)
adjective: Norfolk Islander(s)
Northern Mariana Islands
noun: NA (US citizens)
Papua New Guinea
noun: Papua New Guinean(s)
adjective: Papua New Guinean
noun: Pitcairn Islander(s)
adjective: Pitcairn Islander
noun: Portuguese (singular and plural)
noun: Puerto Rican(s) (US citizens)
adjective: Puerto Rican
noun: Reunionese (singular and plural)
noun: Saint Helenian(s)
adjective: Saint Helenian
note: referred to locally as "Saints"
Saint Kitts and Nevis
noun: Kittitian(s), Nevisian(s)
adjective: Kittitian, Nevisian
noun: Saint Lucian(s)
adjective: Saint Lucian
Saint Pierre and Miquelon
noun: Frenchman(men), Frenchwoman(women)
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
noun: Saint Vincentian(s) or Vincentian(s)
adjective: Saint Vincentian or Vincentian
noun: Sammarinese (singular and plural)
Sao Tome and Principe
noun: Sao Tomean(s)
adjective: Sao Tomean
adjective: Saudi or Saudi Arabian
noun: Senegalese (singular and plural)
noun: Seychellois (singular and plural)
noun: Sierra Leonean(s)
adjective: Sierra Leonean
noun: Solomon Islander(s)
adjective: Solomon Islander
noun: South African(s)
adjective: South African
noun: Sri Lankan(s)
adjective: Sri Lankan
noun: Sudanese (singular and plural)
noun: Swiss (singular and plural)
noun: Taiwan (singular and plural)
note: example - he or she is from Taiwan; they are from Taiwan
noun: Thai (singular and plural)
noun: Togolese (singular and plural)
Trinidad and Tobago
noun: Trinidadian(s), Tobagonian(s)
adjective: Trinidadian, Tobagonian
Turks and Caicos Islands
United Arab Emirates
noun: Briton(s), British (collective plural)
noun: Ni-Vanuatu (singular and plural)
noun: Vietnamese (singular and plural)
noun: Virgin Islander(s) (US citizens)
adjective: Virgin Islander
Wallis and Futuna
noun: Wallisian(s), Futunan(s), or Wallis and Futuna Islanders
adjective: Wallisian, Futunan, or Wallis and Futuna Islander
noun: Sahrawi(s), Sahraoui(s)
adjective: Sahrawi, Sahrawian, Sahraouian