Premium Transcripts
Part 2

Describe something you received for free

This episode's vocabulary

  • Cheap (adj.) - unwilling to spend money.
  • To present (verb) - to give, provide, or make something known.
  • To bestow (verb) - to give something as an honour or present.
  • Garment (noun) - a piece of clothing.
  • Utility (noun) - the usefulness of something, especially in a practical way.
  • Long-lasting (adj.) - continuing for a long period of time.
  • Evidently (adverb) - used to say what people believe is true.
  • Sentimental (adj.) - giving too much importance to emotions, especially love or sadness.


Questions and Answers

M: Rory, are you ready to rock and roll?

R: Yes.

M: Off you go.

R: Well, Scottish people are notoriously cheap and love free things. So I have a variety of things to choose from. But the one that always sticks out the most in my head, and usually in other people's sight is one of the scarfs that I got from my students in East Timor. It's a small island where I used to live. I don't think they're made on the islands, but everyone has one. And they're given us gifts to people who worked there for a while and contributed something. People also give them to their family members at various festivals. Since I had hundreds of students, I suppose you could say I contributed just a little bit, though probably not as much as I could now. I got the scarf itself at the farewell ceremony for myself and someone else who was leaving the same time I was. And I was presented with all of these things, well, with the scarf in particular, after I gave my speech, saying goodbye, and thank you for everything. Like it was a really cool experience, so I wanted to say some nice words to, well, to tell people thank you. It was actually one scarf of a massive pile of many that were bestowed on me at the time. But I like it because, well, this particular scarf is orange and green, and it really stands out. While it might not be the most fashionable garment based on the colour scheme, whenever I where I'm always reminded of my time there by the sea and in the mountains and, well, in the middle of the islands. It's a wonderful place, and the people are very generous. I think the gift reflects that quite well actually. It also has some utility since it does actually keep you warm in colder climes. And it's long-lasting as well, evidently, since I've had it for about five years now, which is almost as long as I've been a teacher. So I definitely think that this is something even though it's free. It's got a lot of sentimental value.

M: Do you usually get things for free?

R: Now that I think about it, I think it's about 50/50, to be honest.

M: Thank you, Rory, for your not free answer, because it's a premium episode!

R: The irony.



M: So, a topic is describe something you got for free, you received for free.

R: You can get a gift for free. So we can just talk about gifts. If you have a gift, sorry, then talk about your free gift.

M: Yeah, we can talk about a present, a gift. What else can we talk about?

R: Advice. You got advice for free.

M: Oh, advice. Hmm. Interesting. But yeah, because the card tells us to describe something you received for free. So it could be like advice, a piece of advice, or an object, a present. I don't know, some autograph or some paper, anything. But again, make sure that you choose the topic wisely. So that you can talk about it, and you know the language and you know how to describe it. Okay? So now could you make a choice and think about what you can talk about. Right. What specific vocabulary did you use about things for free?

R: Well, I talked about something that sticks out in my head. Now, that's not for talking about free things, but that's to focus on a particular thing. And...

M: Your scarf.

R: There's nothing. The whole thing is about the scarf. It was one of many free things.

M: Yeah, and you can say like I got it. I received it. People gave it to me. My students gave it to me. I got it for free. Do you ever use the word freebie?

R: I don't, but some people do.

M: When was the last time you heard the word freebie? Oh, I like freebies.

R: Well, freebies. I can't remember. But it was something. It used to be something that people talked about all the time. I've not heard it in a while. But that doesn't mean to say people don't still use it.

M: Yes, a freebie is something you get for free, like, oh, you go to some conference and this free coffee, free drinks or free meals. So it's a freebie. Hey, everybody loves freebies. You said the word bestow. So it was bestowed on me.

R: Yes. So bestowed is like presented or given, but it's in a very official way. It's usually a kind of honour to have something bestowed.

M: What could be bestowed on you? This scarf was bestowed on me.

R: Well, anything with value or like honorary value. Usually, honours are bestowed on someone by the king or queen of a country, or by tribal leaders, or by members of a tribe.

M: If you talk about clothes, we might get some clothes for free. So you can say that it's a fashionable garment, garment like clothes, fashionable or stylish. And then you can say, it reminds me of something. So this object reminds me of something, of the mountains and islands. And then you can also say that it reflects, I think the gifts reflect that quite well. Can you say that this object reflects me? Like myself?

R: It's a reflection of myself, or it's a reflection of my personality.

M: Yeah, I got this mug for free. It's a reflection of my personality with this logo, Google logo on it. Yeah, but if, for example, we made some merch, and we gave you a mug, a cup with a Scotland freedom. So you can say that it reflects your personality. Yeah.

R: But you haven't given me that.

M: Yeah, we haven't made the merch. Yet. In the process. One day, you'll get a mug with Rory's face on it screaming Scotland freedom, and on the other side of the mug is going to say I eat whiskey with my cornflakes for breakfast.

R: It is not going to say that.

M: Maybe something else. Then, Rory, you said something like it also has some utility. Utility.

R: Yes. So generally, free things don't have, well, much use. And utility just means what it's used for. However, this particular free gift is a scarf. So it keeps you warm in colder climes, which just is another way of saying colder climates, colder places.

M: And then you said like, it also has some utility, since it does actually keep your warm. So since is like because, so that's a very nice synonym. Since. And then surely present perfect, dear listener. I've had it for about eight years. So I got this book for free. I've had it for blah, blah, or I've owned it for two weeks.

R: But the most important thing is how you structure your answer. So I had to say, what it was, who I received it from, where I received it from and how I felt about it. So for talking about what it was, I didn't start off with saying... What was it? Something I received for free was... No. I started off with, well, Scottish people are notoriously cheap. However, if you don't want to denigrate your demographic, then you could say, well, my country is notoriously expensive. So we're always happy to get something for free. And one of those things was... So that's one way of thinking about it, or two ways now. Who I received it from? Well, instead of saying I received it from... I said I got it at a farewell ceremony. And then I explained a bit more about this farewell ceremony before I talked about who gave it to me. Where I received it? Well, I didn't do that in the same order. I talked about the place first and then who I received it from. And then when I talk about how I felt about it, I talk about why it's valuable to me, what it reminds me of.

M: What else can you say? Like, oh, I felt great, I felt grateful, or I felt excited to be given it for free for example.

R: So as long as we describe the emotions, or like the value that's attached to it, then it's okay.

M: Okay, yeah. We hope that you get interesting valuable things for free. Or maybe not for free. Maybe some things for free, and other things are not for free.

R: Oh my God. Please can we move on. Join us in the next episode when we talk about things that are free again. Oh, wait, we're really not moving on, are we? Bye!

M: Bye!


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