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Part 2

Describe a time you saw something interesting on social media

This episode's vocabulary

  • To stop in your tracks (phrase) - to suddenly stop moving or doing something.
  • To browse (verb) - to look at information on the internet.
  • Feed (noun) - a web page, screen, etc. that updates (= changes) often to show the latest information.
  • Appealing (adj.) - attractive or interesting.
  • Do a bit of digging - do research.
  • Run-of-the-mill (adj.) - ordinary and not special or exciting in any way.
  • To tear into sth - to start doing something with energy and enthusiasm.
  • Banter (noun) - conversation that is funny and not serious.
  • To strike a chord (idiom) - if something strikes a chord, it causes people to remember something else because it is similar to it.


Questions and Answers

M: Rory is going to describe a time he saw something interesting on social media. He is gonna say when it was, where he saw it, what he saw, and explain why he thinks it was interesting. Rory, are you ready to rock and roll?

R: Yes.

M: Yes, go ahead, fire away.

R: Well, this is quite a few months ago now. But I remember when I saw it, it's sort of stopped me in my tracks because it was hilarious. And it was so unusual as well to hear it on any social media at all. I was browsing the Instagram feed of someone that I was following. My friend has sent me their profile before because, well, the humor was very appealing to us, and I decided to do a bit of digging, and I did it when I was bored on the metro one day. I mean, what else are you're going to do. So it was this American guy playing the part of a stereotypical and politically incorrect New York socialite. And so his character was replying to some fan mail. That sounds pretty run-of-the-mill. But what drew my attention to this video, in particular, was that the writer of the letter was from Scotland. So this had a particular relevance to me and my friends. And it was great. He spent a solid five minutes or so sort of tearing into Scotland and making fun of it. It wasn't hurtful or anything like that. It was just sort of gentle banter. And it definitely struck a chord with us about how ridiculous some things in a small country can seem to people in a giant country like America. I think one particular set of lines that stood out was when he compared a small village there to a place of the same name in Canada, saying that he didn't worry about confusing them, because both of them could be wiped out in a nuclear attack, and no one would even notice that that happened, because they're quite small. And that's true, I think. You know, people tend to worry about these things in smaller countries and people in bigger countries are just like, whatever. I doubt many people where I'm from even know about these places, to be honest. So God knows what people from outside the country think. It made me laugh a lot. And I had to stop watching it actually because I started laughing publicly, which is a big no-no on the metro. That's something you really want to avoid. But I'm glad I didn't avoid it entirely because it's what made it stick out in my head. And now I'm able to talk about it in my part two presentation.

M: What about your friends? Did they find it funny?

R: Oh, yeah. Well, I found it because of my friends.

M: Thank you, Rory, for your lovely answer.



M: Ha-ha, you started laughing publicly. Yeah, it's like classical situation. You're on the metro, everybody's wearing their stone faces. And there you are laughing your head off. And then people look at you like what? What's going on in his head?

R: Are you crazy?

M: Yeah, are you laughing on the metro? What? Yeah. I used to have a friend and he would eat on the metro.

R: Oh, I've done that before. That was a mistake.

M: Actually, like many foreigners come to Russia, and it's okay to eat inside the metro. Well, you have like some benches. Some of them are quite comfy. So, and when you travel back and forth to different schools. So you sit there you have your lunch and just people look at you like, seriously mate? No. Like really. You're like a bum eating inside the metro. So, dear listener...

R: On the subject of food, I believe that Vanya is going to order us McDonald's at some point because I'm getting a bit peckish. But moving swiftly on and back to what we talked about in, well, speaking part two.

M: Yeah.

R: So we should say we covered all of the key points when, where, what I saw, and why it was interesting. But how it was done? I didn't say like, the time when I saw this, I was like, this is quite a few months ago. You don't have to be specific. You can say like, it was a few days ago or the other day, whatever. Something like this.

M: Yeah.

R: And then describing what you were doing at the time, I was browsing the Instagram feed when I found this video.

M: Yeah, a very good structure. Past continuous. I was browsing the Instagram. I was like looking through the Instagram, I was crawling, when I saw something. Yeah.

R: And then just elaborating on what it was. And I said it was this person, this American guy playing the part.

M: Yeah. And you said that my friend had sent me the profile. So before, past perfect, you see. Because the card is about the situation in the past, so we do need to use past tense forms. My friend had sent me because blah, blah, blah. So I decided...

R: Exactly. And then I explained why it was interesting. It was relevant. It struck a chord, actually. And also, well, of course it was relevant because I'm from Scotland and this person was talking about Scotland. Then I also added that it made me laugh. So that made it, well, that made it stick in my memory even more because people were looking at me like I was crazy.

M: Yeah. I think one particular line that stood out was when blah, blah, blah. And something like, which was interesting.

R: So that's how the answer is structured. But what about the vocabulary? It's stopped me in my truck.

M: Yeah. Like it stopped me in my tracks. We don't actually have tracks. Trains do.

R: And I was on the metro, so.

M: Oh, wow. So, energy drinks. Yeah, Rory needs some fuel. So he sips on his energy drinks.

R: While I'm waiting for Vanya to order us McDonald's.

M: Yeah.

R: Sometime today, Vanya.

M: So when I saw it, it stopped me in my tracks, meaning that I was like, wow, I was really surprised and it caught my attention.

R: What kinds of things stop you in your tracks? Is it my band nine vocabulary?

M: Yes, your photos. Your photos with jewelry. Because Rory acted as a model. He was wearing jewelry and they took pictures of him. So that stopped me in my tracks like for half a day. I wanted that men's jewelry. Seriously.

R: Well, have you ordered any?

M: Not yet. But I will.

R: Moving on from things that stop us in our tracks, we should take a stop at some of the vocabulary. And I said I decided to do a bit of digging. And this is like I don't know, a sort of idiomatic expression because you don't literally dig into someone's Instagram profile.

M: No.

R: But you do have a look at all of their stuff when you're interested in what they're doing.

M: Yep, yeah, I did a bit of digging, I decided to do a bit of digging. And remember that we browse the Instagram feed of someone I was following, for example. So you follow people, you browse the Instagram, you browse the Instagram feed of other people, of celebrities, you do some digging.

R: And we have to describe the people that were doing the digging on. So I said they were stereotypical and politically incorrect.

M: Yeah, and it definitely struck a chord, meaning that...

R: It was relevant.

M: Yeah.

R: It had particular relevance, which just means like it was very relevant. It's very relevant.

M: Very relevant. I had to stop watching because I started laughing publicly. Yeah. So if you're somewhere in the street, and then you saw something funny, and then you start laughing publicly.

R: Or you start cracking up.

M: Yeah. In the metro.

R: Or on the metro.

M: Or on the bus or in the street.

R: Regardless of where you are in Russia it's a big no-no.

M: Yeah, you just can't laugh in public places.

R: Yeah. A big no-no is like something that you just never do.

M: No, come on. You can do it. But in the metro inside the wagon. Yeah. People will look at you like what? We are all stone face here.

R: How dare you enjoy life?

M: Yeah, yeah, yeah, what? Is he having fun? We're inside the metro. Nobody has fun inside the Moscow Metro. People who are in Moscow, I'm sure you understand what I'm talking about.

R: Yes. This idea of having fun. Very controversial.

M: Inside the metro.

R: How dare you?

M: Yeah. Have you ever seen like people like kissing inside the metro? Displaying their attention? Affection*.

R: Yeah, I remember. I don't remember people displaying their affection publicly. Or what I remember is people looking angry.

M: Yeah, yeah. And you can like see older people commenting on like, stop doing that, you know, like, what are you doing? Yeah.

R: You can say it appears ridiculous. And I said that some things do appear ridiculous, which just means they're very silly.

M: Yep. Yeah. So, dear listener, you should now think of a time you saw something interesting on social media. Again, it should be neutral, to be on the safe side. And it should be something that you can talk about, not like maybe something, something real that you can't talk about, but choose something that you can explain. Give examples and talk for one to two minutes about.

R: Have you seen anything interesting on social media recently?

M: Oh, no. No. Nothing.

R: Nothing stops you in your tracks?

M: No.

R: Oh, well. We've got to stop in our tracks now and talk about part three where, oh no, we're stopping in our tracks for part two now. But join us for part three, where we will continue to discuss social media.

M: Bye-bye!

R: Bye!


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