课堂英语

听力入门英语演讲VOA慢速英语美文听力教程英语新闻名校课程听力节目影视听力英语视频

VOA慢速英语:词语典故 随时准备吵架的人(双语)

xuejiaojs 于2013-02-24发布 l 已有人浏览
增大字体 减小字体
每周的这个时间,我们都会讲述美国英语中的词语典故。有一些是古老的,有一些是新的。这些典故和表达方式共同构成了美国人民的生活语言。
    小E英语欢迎您,请点击播放按钮开始播放……

Now, the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.
这里是VOA特别英语词语典故。

Every week at this time we tell the story of words and expressions used in American English. Some of them are old. Some are new. Together, they form the living speech of the American people.
每周的这个时间,我们都会讲述美国英语中的词语典故。有一些是古老的,有一些是新的。这些典故和表达方式共同构成了美国人民的生活语言。

Some popular expressions are a mystery. No one is sure how they developed. One of these is the expression, carry a chip on your shoulder. A person with a chip on his shoulder is a problem for anybody who must deal with him. He seems to be expecting trouble. Sometimes he seems to be saying, "I'm not happy about anything, but what are you going to do about it?"
有一些流行的表达方式是一个谜,没有人能够确定这些表达方式是怎样形成的。其中一个这样的表达方式就是:carry a chip on your shoulder(脾气大,爱吵架)。肩上总带着一块碎片的人对于任何跟他打交道的人来说都是一个麻烦]。他似乎总在等着找麻烦。有时他的样子就好像再说,“我对某件事情感到不高兴,但是你又能怎么样呢?”

A chip is a small piece of something, like a chip of wood. How did this chip get on a person's shoulder? Well, experts say the expression appears to have been first used in the United States more than one hundred years ago.
chip指的是某个东西的碎片,例如木头碎片。碎片怎么会到人的肩膀上去呢?专家称,这个表达方式似乎100多年前在美国首次使用。

One writer believes that the expression might have come from an old saying. The saying warns against striking too high, or a chip might fall into your eye. That could be good advice. If you strike high up on a tree with an axe, the chip of wood that is cut off will fall into your eye. The saying becomes a warning about the dangers of attacking people who are in more important positions than you are.
一位作家相信,这个表达方式可能来自一个古老的谚语。这个谚语警告人们砍木头的位置不要太高,否则碎片会落到眼睛里。这应该是一个很好的建议。如果你用斧头砍树木很高的位置,被砍掉的木屑可能会落到你的眼睛里。这个谚语是警告人们袭击那些位置比你更加重要的人的危险性。

Later, in the United States, some people would put a real chip on their shoulder as a test. They wanted to start a fight. They would wait for someone to be brave enough to try to hit it off.
后来,在美国,一些人真的在肩膀上放上碎片作为测试。他们想挑起事端,等着有足够勇敢的人来将碎片打掉。

The word chip appears in a number of special American expressions. Another is chip off the old block. This means that a child is exactly like a parent.
chip这个词出现在很多特殊的美国表达方式中。另外一个是chip off the old block,意思是酷像父母的小孩。

This expression goes back at least to the early sixteen hundreds. The British writer of plays, George Colman, wrote these lines in seventeen sixty-two. "You'll find him his father's own son, I believe. A chip off the old block, I promise you!"
这个短语至少要追溯到17世纪初期。英国剧作家George Colman在1762年写下这些:“我相信,你会发现他就是父亲的亲生儿子。我向你保证,他酷像他的父亲。”

The word chip can also be used in a threatening way to someone who is suspected of wrongdoing. An investigator may say, "We're going to let the chips fall where they may." This means the investigation is going to be complete and honest. It is also a warning that no one will be protected from being found guilty.
chip也可以用来威胁涉嫌做了坏事的人。一位调查人员可能说:“We're going to let the chips fall where they may.(我们将不计后果)。”意思是,调查过程将会是公正无私的。这也是一个警告,即任何人都不可能逃脱法律的制裁。

Chips are often used in card games. They represent money. A poker player may, at any time, decide to leave the game. He will turn in his chips in exchange for money or cash.
chip还被用在纸牌游戏中,代表的是钱。玩扑克的人随时都可能决定离开游戏。他会将自己的chips筹码兑换成钱或现金。

This lead to another meaning. A person who finished or died was said to have cashed in his chips. Which is a way of saying it is time for me to finish this program.
这就引申出另外一个意思。一个完成工作或者结束一生的人也会被人说cashed in his chips。用这个短语也可以表示,是时间来完成这个节目了。

You have been listening to the VOA Special English program, Words and Their Stories. I'm Warren Scheer.
您刚刚收听的是VOA慢速英语词语典故节目。我是Warren Scheer。

知识拓展:

今天我们来讲几个由chip这个词发展而来的习惯用语。第一个是:the chips are down。习惯用语the chips are down来历已久。它来自扑克牌桌。描绘的是下赌注的筹码都已经放在桌面上而打扑克的人即将摊牌一决输赢的当头。

这是最让人提心吊胆的时刻,因为结果未见分晓。后来人们把这个习惯用语广泛地应用在其它场合。我们听个例子来体会它的意思吧。说话的人在回忆自己的一段艰难时光。当时他被解雇,但是又急需一份工作来养家糊口。我们听听他是怎么说的:

例句-1:I had a wife and kids to support, so the chips were really down. But I found out who my real friends were.Pete started phoning people with connections and got me a new job in a week.

他得负担妻子儿女的生活,所以失去工作全家人的生计就没了着落。在这当口上最能看出谁是真正的患难之交。好朋友Pete马上开始打电话和关系多的人联络。只一个星期就为他找到了一份新工作。

他的工资是全家大小的生活来源。在没找到新工作前,他失业等于断了全家的生计,所以这里的习惯用语the chips were down描绘令人担忧悬念的局面。

我们再看个例子。竞选一个大州的州长位置的候选人,在投票前两星期的民意测验中看到自己的得分大大落后于对手。这让他很担心。这会儿他在跟手下的募款人员讲话:

例句-2:Look, with my support slipping, the chips are down. If you don't raise another million this week for more TV ads, I don't think I have a ghost of chance to get enough votes to win!

他说:看,我的支持率下滑。这种形势令人忧虑悬念。你们务必在这星期内筹款一百万美元,用来作更多的电视广告,否则我赢得选举胜利的希望就全完了。

这里的the chips are down意思也是情况不妙、令人担心。

我们再学个包括chip这个词的习惯用语:chip in。 在习惯用语chip in里, chip是个动词,它的来源是在牌还没发下前每个打扑克的人得把同等数目的筹码扔到桌面中央下头注。这就叫chip in。头注和打牌过程中下的赌注最后都归这付牌的赢家。Chip in已被用到日常生活的各方面,在收钱凑分子买一样东西送人的时候时候你常会听到人们说chip in。我们听个例子:

例句-3:Bill, you know Sally in accounting. Well, her mother died last night. We'd like to send flowers. Most people are chipping in five dollars. Would you like to chip in too?

他说:Bill, 你认识会计处的Sally 吧。她母亲昨晚去世了。我们想送鲜花。多数人都凑分子出五块钱,你要不要也凑一份?

这里的chip in意思是为了同一个目的每人出一份钱,凑在一起。

我们再学个也用chip这个词的习惯用语:cash in one's chips。 Cash作名词的时候指“现金,” 但是在短语

cash in里面cash是动词。 Cash in原来的意思是赌局完结时去帐房把自己手上的筹码交进去换成现金,作个了断。 Cash in one's chips被人们沿用到日常生活中,指的不是赌局完毕,而是人生的终点。换句话说就是如一场赌博般的人生收场了。我们来听个例子。说话的是个退役军人。他刚刚得到一个怀消息。

例句-4:I just heard that Charley, my best friend in the army, cashed in his chips last week in Chicago. I haven't seen him in 25 years but back then we were as close as any two men could be.

他说:我刚听说我服役时最好的朋友Charley上星期结束了他的一生。我跟他虽然有二十五年没见面了,但是在当年我俩可是比谁都要好。

这段话里的cashed in his chips含义是结束了他的一生。

 

 1 2 下一页

分享到

添加到收藏

VOA慢速排行