[ti:'The World Is Your Oyster!'] [by:www.51voa.com] [00:00.00]更多听力请访问51VOA.COM [00:07.16]Now, Words and Their Stories from VOA Learning English. [00:12.37]On this program, we explore common expressions in American English. [00:18.76]On another Words and Their Stories, [00:21.29]we went to the high seas to learn about expressions with sharks. [00:27.08]Today, we go back into the ocean [00:29.92]to explore expressions involving other sea creatures. [00:35.68]Okay, first of all, the ocean is a big place. [00:40.08]And a single drop of water in the ocean is nearly nothing. [00:46.08]So, when we say something is like a drop in the ocean, [00:50.48]we mean it is a very small amount compared to what is needed. [00:56.88]Let's say a high school needs $80,000 to build a new computer laboratory for its students. [01:05.20]The school organizes a bake sale – an event held for the purpose of raising money. [01:12.16]But on the day of the bake sale, it rains. [01:16.64]No one comes because of the weather. [01:20.20]By the end of the day, the high school raises only $100. [01:25.80]If $80,000 is the goal, $100 is a drop in the ocean. [01:33.08]Here in the U.S., you may also hear the expression drop in the bucket. [01:39.00]But a drop in the ocean is much more dramatic. [01:44.44]Another marine animal is the octopus. [01:49.20]These eight-tentacle creatures are full of surprises! [01:54.12]Sadly, in spoken English, they do not have a good reputation. [01:59.60]In fact, the word "octopus" has at least two not-so-good meanings. [02:07.04]An octopus can be a powerful and influential organization [02:12.32]with its tentacles reaching far and wide, [02:15.36]usually with harmful effects. [02:19.20]For example, a multinational corporation that only wants to make money [02:24.84]has its tentacles in everything from food production to energy resources. [02:32.32]Also, when a man cannot keep his hands off a woman, [02:36.36]we say he is an octopus or has octopus hands. [02:42.24]To use this expression, it is important [02:45.36]that the woman does not want the attention of the "octopus." [02:50.88]Now, we move on to another unusual sea creature – the eel. [02:56.52]Eels are long and look like snakes. [03:00.64]Like octopuses, some people like to eat them. [03:04.72]But they are difficult to catch because they are slippery. [03:09.88]And that brings us to another expression. [03:13.96]If someone is slippery as an eel, they are tricky and difficult to catch. [03:21.36]We often use this expression as a warning to others. [03:25.84]For example, "Watch out for her. She's as slippery as an eel." [03:32.04]Like many terms that compare two things, [03:35.12]you can use the first "as" or leave it out. [03:39.80]So, it's fine to say "She is slippery as an eel." [03:45.72]We would like to end our program today on a happy note. [03:50.00]So, here are two positive expressions that come from ocean animals. [03:56.96]This next one sounds very strange. [04:00.36]It involves oysters. [04:03.64]Some people consider oysters a delicacy [04:07.44]– a rare food that you only eat once in a while. [04:12.28]Oysters are great for another for another reason. [04:15.60]They make pearls! [04:17.96]So, oysters are rare indeed. [04:22.20]And that brings us to our next expression. [04:25.76]When we say "The world is your oyster!" [04:28.64]we mean that you are able to make the most out of life. [04:32.96]You take every chance given to you and put it to good use. [04:38.24]Language experts say this is one of the many expressions [04:42.24]created by the English writer William Shakespeare. [04:46.56]He used it in his play The Merry Wives of Windsor. [04:52.12]However, some people use this expression a little differently. [04:57.32]It can also mean that you have every chance or opportunity you could possibly want. [05:03.52]You have money, skills, ability and freedom to do exactly what you want. [05:10.92]For example, if you have a friend who grew up with extreme wealth, [05:16.32]attended the best schools and have parents [05:20.16]who are both highly connected in their professional fields, [05:24.12]you could say, "The world is her oyster!" [05:28.88]Where oysters are small and strange looking, [05:32.12]whales are huge and majestic. [05:36.04]Whales are some of the largest mammals on Earth. [05:40.44]And unlike to octopuses and eels, whales have a very good reputation. [05:46.68]In fact, if something is a whale of a ... thing, [05:51.44]it is a very good thing. [05:54.04]If you performed very well at work, [05:56.76]your boss could say you did a whale of a job. [06:01.32]"A whale of" something can also mean it's very big. [06:06.36]For example, if you have a really big project to do, [06:10.00]you could say you have a whale of a project. [06:14.84]Americans also use the expression "to have a whale of a time." [06:20.00]This simply means to have a really good time. [06:23.92]You might hear or read this expression, [06:27.24]but we have other ways to say it. [06:30.48]For example, if someone asks me how a party was, [06:34.72]I could say, "It was a blast!" or "I had an awesome time!" [06:42.16]And I've had a whale of a time bringing you this Words and Their Stories. [06:47.32]After all, when you do something you love as a career, [06:50.92]the world is your oyster! [06:53.48]I'm Anna Matteo. [06:55.31]更多听力请访问51VOA.COM