an English Learning Podcast, episode 12

An English Learning Podcast, Episode 12

In this month of an English Learning Podcast, off the cuff, episode 12, Clare and Annie talk about the rat race. Find out what it is and listen to us discussing how to get off of it and if its ever too late to change your life.

Vocabulary Episode 12

A pause for thought

  • to stop and think about something carefully
    • The news about the volcano has given us all a pause for thought about what is important in our lives.

Dermot Bolger

  • Dermot Bolger is an Irish author. Find out more about him here.
  • The book Clare mentions in the podcast by this author is called An ark of light. Click here to read more about the book.


  • People that make up the high social class. Learn more here.
    • The book explains the intimate life of the gentry at the beginning of Vitoria-Gasteiz


  • Learn more about Nomadland, the film that Annie mentioned in the podcast by clicking here.


  • The strength to overcome adversity
  • Learn more here.
    • The best way to build resilience in children is to have at least one adult who loves them no matter what they do or say.

The rat race

  • a way of life in which people are running to compete with each other for wealth and or power without really getting anywhere.
  • Watch this animated short film by Steve Cutts which depicts the rat race by clicking here.
    • Sometimes I would like to quit this rat race and live a relaxing life in the countryside.

The bandwagon

  • To get involved in an activity that will be successful and receive the benefits.
    • All the actors are trying to get on the TV series bandwagon.


  • Something that makes you feel good. If a movie is uplifting, it usually gives some kind of positive message or happy ending.
    • In the movie Nomadland, although at times it was quite sad to see people’s struggles, it had a quite uplifting ending and message.


  • In an ironic situation, the opposite of what you expect occurs.
    • It’s a bit ironic that she’s the one who got sick since she has gone to such long lengths to stay healthy.


  • an aspiration is something that you hope to achieve or become
    • He aspires to be a surgeon some day.

the height of ones career

  • Height in this context means the highest point, so that the height of one’s career means they are at the apex or the highest place possible in the work life.
    • She is at the height of her career and at such a young age.
  • Remember career is English is a false friend. It does not mean what you are studying at school. It means your professional work.
    • I have had a long career teaching English.


  • Resounding can have two meanings. Firstly, it can mean loud. In the podcast, Annie used it to say something that is unmistakable, something she is very sure about.
    • The audience gave the singer a resounding applause.
    • The party was a resounding success.


  • something that is astonishing is very surprising.
    • To my astonishment, the house was already completed just after one month.
    • Their accomplishments are astonishing.

to run rings around someone

  • this is an idiom that means someone does something way better than someone else.
    • Jim runs rings around his classmates in Math class.

Now that you have learned all the vocabulary from An English Podcast, Episode 12, have a listen to our previous podcasts and pick up on some more new vocabulary. Episode 11 Episode 10

B2 C1 C2 Expressions Sessions about food

B2 C1 C2 expressions about food

If you are studying for your B2 C1 or C2 level or are simply an English language learner, you know there are tons of expressions to learn. Here we offer you some B2 C1 C2 expressions about food. Let’s face it, expressions about food are the best sort of expressions!

A piece of cake

  • Everyone likes cake. It’s easy to like cake. So, if something is a piece of cake, it means that it is easy to do. It comes from the same meaning of ‘easy as pie’ referring to how easy it is to eat a sweat dessert.
    • Click here to learn how to make carrot cake! It’s as easy as pie.
    • Learning English is a piece of cake with Bloglish!

Spill the beans

  • If you spill the beans, you have said something you shouldn’t have. This is usually when there is a surprise party and you accidently mention it in front of the person whose party it is or if you intentionally tell a secret that someone asked you not to tell.
    • Henry spilled the beans to my mom and now I am grounded for two days.

Go bananas

  • Go bananas or ‘Go ape’ (a less commonly used expression) refer to someone acting in a wild or crazy way. So, it comes from the idea of monkeys (or apes) jumping or swinging around and eating bananas. Sometimes it is difficult to know if the expression means someone is very happy or over-reacting to a situation. It depends on the tone of voice used to say the expression. 
    • They bought a new house and they are just going bananas about it.

There’s no use crying over spilled milk

  • This probably depends on what your parents were like when you were a child. If they yelled at you when you spilled milk, then this expression doesn’t work. The idea is that kids knock over their milk quite often due to being clumsy and since crying won’t bring the milk back, they should just clean it up and get another one. Parents literally would say, there’s no use crying over spilled milk. However, you can apply this to any situation where someone is upset about a past mistake or situation to tell them, it can’t be changed so they just need to accept the consequence and move on.  
    • You lost your keys. There’s no use crying over spilled milk. Get them replaced and move on.

Take it with a grain of salt

  • If someone tells you to take it with a grain of salt, it is a small warning that maybe it’s not 100% true what they are telling you or what they heard. This could be for a number of reasons:
    • They don’t have all the information,
    • Someone is giving you their opinion, not facts,
    • He or she does not think they got it from a reliable source, or
    • maybe they don’t remember all the details.
    • Kelly told me that she is going to make the team, but take it with a grain of salt (because Kelly sometimes lies or exaggerated the truth).

Bring home the bacon

  • This is one of my favorites, simply because it says bacon. Mmm. To bring home the bacon means that you earn money and therefore your house (or home) has money to buy such things as food (bacon). It used to be used mainly in a sexist way, saying women work at home and men bring home the bacon, but this has changed and is now used for anyone who is earning a wage.
    • I got a new job! I’ll finally be able to bring home the bacon.

Butter someone up

  • If you are buttering someone up, it means you are flattering them or saying nice things to them because you need something in return from them. You may tell your teacher she is your favorite teacher before telling her you didn’t do your homework. You may offer to help your boss as much as possible saying you enjoy working for him or her so you can later ask for a raise. Maybe you tell your dad how wonderful his cooking is before asking permission to go to a concert. Either way, you are buttering someone up so they are more likely to give you what you want. Naturally, everything is better with butter.
    • Are you buttering me up? What do you want?

That’s the way the cookie crumbles

  • If you eat a good cookie, it should crumble a bit because that’s just what happens when you eat a cookie. This is a metaphor for life, sometimes things just happen and there’s not much we can do about it. Sometimes things will go in your favor and other times they won’t. Your team played the best they could but they lost the game. You had a great interview but they gave the job to someone else. You like a boy but he likes your best friend. That’s just the way the cookie crumbles sometimes and there’s not much we can do about it.
  • I’m really sorry to hear that you didn’t make the team. That’s just the way the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.

Now that you’ve learned these B2 C1 C2 Expressions about food, learn more from other Expressions Sessions

Vocab Rehab - Countable uncountable

Nombres NO contables a contables

Se puede cambiar nombres NO contables a nombres contables.

  • Un nombre contable es un nombre que se puede contar. Por ejemplo: una silla, dos sillas. Pichar AQUÍ para aprender más sobre nombres contables.
  • Un pronombre no contable es un pronombre que no se puede contar. Por ejemplo: Azúcar, agua, pan.

¿Como puedo cambiar los no contables a contables?

  • En los casos de azúcar, agua y pan, podemos cambiarles a pronombres contables añadiendo otro pronombre. En muchos casos es muy parecido al Castellano.
  • Por ejemplo:
Sugar – a cup of sugar Azúcar – una taza de azucar
Water – a bottle of water Agua – una botella de agua
Bread – a loaf of bread Pan – una barra de pan

Unos ejemplos que son distintos al Castellano

Los pronombres noticias, muebles, sugerencias, tarea, ruido y chisme en Castellano son contables pero en Inglés son NO contables. Eso puede causar mal entendidos y/o problemas gramaticales.

  • I heard a news story last night about a village close to Vitoria. (Escuche una notice anoche sobre un pueblo cerca de Vitoria.)
    • No podemos decir ‘I heard a news’ porque news son las noticias en general. Cuando queremos hablar de una noticia en particular, hay que usar ‘a news story’ o ‘a piece of news’.
  • I bought some new furniture. (Compre algunos muebles nuevos)
    • Diciendo ‘furniture’ implica más que un mueble así que si quieres decir que solo has comprador un mueble tienes que decir ‘a piece of furniture’.
    • I’m selling a piece of furniture on Wallapop. (Vendo un mueble en Wallapop)
  • Let me give you a piece of advice. (Dejame darte una sugerencia)
    • Eso es lo que decimos cuando queremos dar un consejo.
    • Si quieres expresar que hayas recibido consejos del medico dirias The doctor gave me some advice on how to lose weight. (El medico me ha dado unas sugerencias de como perder peso)
  • I heard an interesting piece of gossip. Escuche un chisme interesante
    • Para especificar que es solo un chisme, decimos a piece of gossip. Tambien da un poco de emphasis en el chisme para decir que es muy interesante.
    • Si quieres hablar de los chismes en general puedes decir These TV programs only talk about gossip. (Estas programas de televisión sobre hablan de chismes)
  • I have homework’ Tengo tarea.
    • La palabra homework no me dice si tienes una tarea o 3 tareas.
    • Para ser más exacta, hay que decir I have 3 homework assignments to do. (Tengo 3 tareas para hacer.)

Check out more VOCAB REHABs in Bloglish

Skills for International Sales

FREE Business English Course

Today, Business English is fundamental for all businesses especially when giving presentations and dealing with negotiations, which is most days. So, having a FREE Business English Course is something you should NOT pass up.

In this course (100% subvencionado) Skills for International Sales – Presentations and Negotiations, you will learn how to engage your audience, expand your vocabulary, promote your products and much much more.

About the course


  • The Free Business English course will take place in the Camara de Comercio de Álava in its Centro de Formación. Click here to see the location in Google maps.
    • Calle Manuel Iradier 17, 01005, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Álava


  • The course is 40 hours of Business Related English
    • October 18th to the 28th, Monday to Thursday
    • 9:00 am to 2:00 pm


  • The course is 100% subvencionado por la Diputación Foral de Álava
  • You must have a B2 level to join the course.
  • Your Bloglish teachers, Clare Kearney and Annie Hintz, will be giving the course. So, you know we will be making it as enjoyable and educational as we can. Learn more about us here

Course Objectives

Module 1

  • Provide the necessary tools to inform, inspire and entertain.
  • How to engage your audience from the very beginning.
  • Pay attention to body language.
  • How to use visual aids effectively.
  • How to guide your audience throughout your speech.
  • Dealing with questions from the audience.

Module 2

  • Define the stages and elements of the negotiation process.
  • Develop the skills and techniques of a successful negotiator.
  • Identify optimal win-win solutions in negotiations and make profitable deals.
  • Differentiate negotiation styles and mental models, analyze their own and their partner’s behaviour in negotiations.
  • Learn about cross-cultural differences in negotiations.

Sign up for the FREE Business English Course here

Download the folleto by clicking here.

Certifica tu nivel de inglés

Certifica tu nivel de inglés

Certifica tu nivel de inglés supone un requisito imprescindible a la hora de solicitar becas, presentarse a oposiciones, ir al extranjero con Erasmus o realizar un máster.

Existen varias instituciones que certifican tu nivel de inglés oficialmente. No solo es importante tener una certificación de inglés, sino tener la correcta.

La Cámara de Comercio en Álava

Nosotros, en la escuela de idiomas de la Cámara de Comercio de Álava, además de impartir  clases de preparación para certificar tu nivel de inglés, también ofrecemos asesoramiento sobre el certificado que mejor te convenga para tus objetivos.

Una vez definido conjuntamente el mejor certificado para tu situación comienza la preparación.

Nuestros cursos de preparación – Intensivos y Cursos Anuales

Cursos Anuales

  • Los Cursos anuales te preparan para el nivel A2, B1, B2, C1 y C2.
  • En estas clases aprenderás a:
    • Trabajar las diferentes partes del examen: Reading, writing, listening y speaking.
    • Adquirir la gramática y vocabulario del nivel
    • Aumentar la escucha a través de actividades parecidos al examen, videos, conversación, etc.
    • Mejorar tu fluidez hablando utilizando vocabulario adecuado para cada nivel
    • Desarrollar tus habilidades de escritura
  • Cuando son las clases?
    • Dos veces a la semana en sesiones de 1 hora y media.
    • Pinchar AQUÍ para ver el listado completo de cursos anuales

Cursos Intensivos

  • Los cursos intensivos pueden ser tanto online (Oxford Test of English) como presenciales (F.C.E., C.A.E., C.P.E., I.E.L.T.S., T.O.E.F.L., B.E.C.). Certifica tu nivel de inglés con nosotros.
  • En estas clases aprendarás a:
    • familiarizarte con las diferentes partes del examen: reading, writing, listening y speaking.
    • desarrollar  técnicas y pautas necesarias para obtener el mejor resultado posible.
    • manejar los tiempos de cada sección, imprescindible dado que todos los exámenes tienen un límite de tiempo.
    • adquirir  la gramática y vocabulario claves
    • desarrollar tus habilidades de escritura de manera personalizada
    • participar en debates, charlas para mejorar tu fluidez en la comunicación

Clases de preparación para los siguientes examenes de nivel

Oxford Test of English

  • En un mismo examen puedes certificar tu nivel de inglés, ya sea  A2, B1 o B2
  • La Cámara te ofrece un curso intensivo de preparación de 8 días (16 horas de clases de preparación  más  4 sesiones de 1/2 hora de speaking individualizado).
  • Una vez realizado el curso, puedes presentarte al examen en nuestras instalaciones ya que somos un centro certificado de Oxford.

Cambridge FIRST (F.C.E.), Advanced (C.A.E.) y Proficiency (C.P.E.)

  • Cada trimestre ofrecemos un curso de preparación de 1 día a la semana, 3 horas de clases con material adicional para continuar la preparación de forma autónoma entre clases.

Cambridge Business English Certificate B.E.C.

  • Ofrecemos cursos de 2 días a la semana a lo largo del año académico.
  • Como su nombre indica, este curso está especializado en la lengua a utilizar específicamente en el ámbito de los negocios y la administración de empresas.  


  • Es un certificado muy utilizado por instituciones de migración, empresas transnacionales y cientos de universidades como comprobante del nivel de idioma.
  • Ofrecemos cursos de preparación cada trimestre, un día a la semana.


  • Es el homólogo estadounidense del IELTS y está especializado en evaluar el nivel general del inglés americano en hablantes no nativos.
  • Ofrecemos cursos de preparación cada trimestre, un día a la semana.

Pinchar AQUÍ para ver todos los cursos tenemos en el curso 2021/2022

En estas clase aprenderás a:

Cursos de Conversación

Cursos de Conversación en Inglés

Sabemos que si no practicas un idioma, es imposible tener la fluidez y confianza para hablarlo. Los Cursos de Conversación en Inglés trabajan sobre dos ejes:

  1. Mejorar tu nivel de gramática y vocabulario
  2. Trabajar tu  confianza para lograr conversar con mayor fluidez y  escuchar con mayor facilidad.

¿Cómo son las clases de conversación?

  • Los Cursos de Conversación en inglés están perfectamente diseñadas con unos objetivos concretos.
  • Incorporan diferentes temas sobre los que aprender nuevo vocabulario y nuevos conceptos gramaticales.
  • Un entorno positivo que te permitirá expresarte con confianza y sin miedo a cometer errores
  • Contarás con listenings y videos auténticos que mejorarán tu comprensión y escucha en general
  • Usaremos una variedad de recursos desde role-plays hasta juegos y dinámicas para que aprendas de una manera amena
  • Trabajaremos tu pronunciación para mejorar tu comunicación

¿Quién puede apuntarse a clases de conversación?

  • Personas que estén interesado en mejorar su fluidez
  • Personas que tengan miedo y sientan vergüenza para hablar y quieran superarlo
  • Trabajadores que tengan que dar presentaciones y quieran adquirir más confianza y expresarse de una manera más eficaz en público
  • Gente a la que le gusta viajar físicamente o a través de la lectura y quieren profundizar en el idioma
  • Apasionad@s que disfruten del idioma por el placer de aprenderlo y hablarlo
  • Aquell@s que no quieran perder la fluidez que han conseguido a lo largo de los años
  • Personas que no tengan problemas para hablar pero quizás si para entender

¿Qué nivel necesito para una clase de conversación?

  • Tenemos Cursos de Conversación en Inglés para todos los niveles.
  • Hay personas que tienen un nivel muy alto escrito en inglés pero no consiguen entender un vídeo en Youtube. Hay otros que entienden todo pero no tienen la confianza para hablar. Te situaremos en la clase donde estés más comod@ y donde puedas aprender mejor.

Pincha AQUÍ para ver todos las clases del curso 2021-2022.

Countable Nouns en inglés

Countable Nouns en inglés

Countable Nouns en inglés (Nombres contables) nos pueden resultar dificiles ya que hay ciertos cuantificadores que se deben usar con ellos. Pero son expresiones que utilizamos todos los días. Antes de enseñaros todos los cuantificadores y sus utilidades, es importante entender bien qué es un nombre contable. También hay varios nombres contables en inglés que no lo son en Castellano. Mira el vídeo en inglés y luego revisa las explicaciones en Castellano abajo y haz una prueba con los ejercicios.

¿Que es un Countable Noun?

  • Countable Nouns (Nombres Contables) en inglés son pronombres que se puede contar porque son artículos individualizados.
    • one banana (un plátano)
    • three bananas (tres plátanos)
    • two chairs (dos sillas)
    • four chairs (cuatro sillas)
  • Countable Nouns pueden ser singular o plural
    • an animal (un animal) es singular
    • the animals (los animales) son plurales
    • a flower (una amiga) es singular
    • the flowers (las flores) es plural

Singular Countable Nouns en inglés

  • Usa a (un o una) /the (el o ella) /my (mi) etc. con Singular Countable Nouns
    • This is my backpack. (Esto es mi mochila.)
    • Her house is next to the store. (Su casa está a lado de la tienda.)


  • Cuando los Countable Nouns son singulares, solemos usar el artículo ‘a‘ o ‘an‘ en lugar de ‘one‘.
    • I ate an apple earlier today. (Comí una manzano previamente hoy.)
    • I just bought a new car. (¡Acabo de comprar un coche nuevo!)

Plural Countable Nouns en inglés

  • Usamos any (ninguno o alguno), some (algunos/as), many (muchos), few (pocos), lots of (muchos/un montón), etc with Plural Countable Nouns
    • There are so many desserts! (¡Hay tantas postres!)
    • I think I’ll have some cupcakes. (Creo que me comería algunas cupcakes.)
    • Do you have any pears? (¿Tienes peras?)
    • No, I’m sorry. I don’t have any pears, but there are lots of peaches. (No, perdón. No tengo ninguna pera, pero hay muchas nectarinas.)
    • There are few cities like Vitoria-Gasteiz. (Hay pocas ciudades como Vitoria-Gasteiz.)


  • Solemos usar ‘any‘ para negativos y interrogativos.
    • Los negativos
      • I don’t have any books. (No tengo ningun libro).
      • There aren’t any stores open today. (No hay ninguna tienda abierta hoy.
    • Interrogativos
      • Do you have any questions? (¿Tienes alguna pregunta?)
      • Do you have any new friends at school? (¿Tienes algunos amistades nuevos en el colegio?)


  • Usamos ‘some‘ para afirmativos y interrogativos.
  • Los afirmativos
    • I bought some strawberries. (Compré algunas fresas.)
    • I have some new teachers this year. (Tengo algunos profesores nuevos este año)
  • Los interrogativos que usamos con ‘some‘ suelen ser frases que ofrecen o piden algo.
    • Ofrecer
      • Would you like some cookies? (¿Quieres algunas galletas?)
      • Can I offer you some drinks? (¿Os puedo ofrecer alguna bebida?)
    • Pedir
      • Can I invite some people to my party? (¿Puedo invitar a algunas personas a mi fiesta?)
      • Could you give me some ideas for the project? (Me puedes dar algunas ideas para el proyecto?)

Practíca con estos ejercicios

Completar las oraciones con a, an, some o any.

  1. It is ___ apple.                            
  2. Have you got ___ pets?                     
  3. I bought ___ flowers.
  4. Lucy has not got ___ books.       
  5. There is ___ candle on the table.             
  6. Tim eats ___ banana every day.
  7. We don’t have ___ forks.       
  8. My brother made ___ friends.                 
  9. My brother found ___ dog.
  10. Does the store have ___ eggs?          
  11. There are ___ new chairs in the classroom. 
  12. Is there ___ pen on the desk?  
  13. Would you like ___ cookies with your milk?
  14. ___ bee just stung me.
  15. Do you have ___ strawberries?


  1. an; 2. any; 3. some; 4. any; 5. a; 6. a; 7. any; 8. some; 9. a; 10. any; 11. some; 12. a; 13. some; 14. A; 15. any
Cursos de Business English

Cursos de Business English

La Cámara de Álava tiene una larga historia preparando a profesionales que necesitan Cursos de Business English para hacer negocios con otras empresas del extranjero. Pero hoy más que nunca, un mundo globalizado nos exige un nivel de inglés muy elevado y especializado. Much@s alumno@s que obtuvieron un certificado de inglés  B2 o C1  vuelvan a nosotros al incorporarse al mundo laboral para actualizar, adaptar y mejorar su nivel de inglés a su situación profesional. Los aprendizajes obtenidos para conseguir un certificado no son suficientes para enfrentarse con confianza a unas conferencias telefónicas o unas reuniones de equipo en inglés.

¿Qué puedo aprender en un curso de Business English?

Business English B2

El curso de Business English B2 consiste de clases divididas en dos sesiones de 1 hora y media. En cada una hay tiempo para repasar las cuatro áreas del idioma:  Listening, Speaking, Reading y Writing. En nuestras clases hay oportunidad para dar presentaciones, negociar precios de productos, contestar y hacer llamadas telefónicas así como para practicar “small talk”, hablar sobre el tiempo, preferencias, viajes, etc.


  • Mejorar tus habilidades para la escucha a través de Listenings reales
  • Listenings sobre:
    • la promocionan  de los productos de una empresa,
    • Como llevarse a cabo negociaciones en una feria comercial
    • La realización de presentaciones en público, etc.  


  • Ganar confianza a la hora de hablar sobre los temas previamente mencionados,
  • Dominar la conversación de networking
  • Aprender tratarse en inglés con clientes difíciles, etc.


  • Perfeccionar la escritura que utilizas en tu entorno laboral al elaborar correos electrónicos, promociones, informes, propuestas, etc.

Gramática y Vocabulario

  • Consolidar una base gramatical y de vocabulario que te permita seguir mejorando tu nivel de inglés incluso de forma autónoma.
  • Ejemplos de situaciones en los que es necesario:
    • el uso de condicionales en escenarios hipotéticos,
    • manejo de “phrasal verbs” para conversaciones telefónicas o teleconferencias, (hang up, call back, put me through),
    • extender el lenguaje específico de reuniones, Marketing, Finanzas, etc.

Business English C1

El Curso de Business English Advanced es una clase única a la semana de 3 horas los viernes por la tarde de nivel avanzado. Está enfocada al lenguaje utilizado en entornos laborales en temas como imagen corporativa, cadena de distribución, gestión de conflictos, marketing y ventas, inversiones, etc.

La mejora de tu Business English tendrá un impacto positivo en tu negocio y en tu desarrollo profesional.


  • Todas las sesiones incluyen videos auténticos sobre el tema que se esté tratando en esa clase, por ejemplo liderazgo, negociaciones, reuniones, marketing, etc.
  • También se incluirán listenings de nivel avanzados sobre estos mismos temas.


  • Se dedica gran parte de la clase a la comunicación que es el fundamento de los negocios. Incorporamos conversaciones en grupos pequeños y grandes y utilizamos “role plays”.


  • Perfeccionamos la escritura para poder comunicarse de forma clara y con un lenguaje adaptado a las necesidades de cada contexto

¿Qué nos diferencia?

  • El profesorado de la Cámara de Comercio cuenta con años de experiencia trabajando muy de cerca con las empresas de Álava, sus trabajadores y sus necesidades.
  • Las clases se adaptan a las situaciones particulares de cada profesional y/o empresa
  • Profesorado en continuo desarrollo para mantenerse al día sobre tecnologías y tendencias.
  • La satisfacción de nuestro alumnado se refleja en que la gran mayoría prolonga su aprendizaje con nosotros durante años

Puedes ver todos los cursos pinchando aquí
Puedes incribirse en nuestros cursos pinchando aquí

off the cuff Episode 11

A learning English podcast: off the cuff

In this month’s episode of #offthecuff we talk about experiences from #Vitoria #Madrid #Mexico where we thought people should have spoken up about what they saw instead of just being a #bystander. This July 2021 episode is full of vocabulary so check it with subtitles.

Vocabulary and Phrases from the first 3 minutes

  • Cat fight – an intense argument or physical fight usually between two women.
    • Yesterday two young girls for into a cat fight right in front of my house and I tried to stop them.
  • Shame on you – used to tell someone that they should be ashamed (embarrassed) of their behavior.
    • Shame on you for not helping that older woman with her groceries when her bad broke.
  • Two steps forward one leap back – used to express that we are evolving by moving forward in society but then we go backward and seem to lose some things that we have learned.
    • I feel like I took two giant steps forward with my English but then COVID hit and not I have taken a leap back.
  • Build up – a gradual increase of something
    • I haven’t told her how I feel yet, so my anger seems to just be building up and I am worried I may explode.
  • Excuse – A reason you give to explain why you have done something wrong.
    • They decided to fire him because he kept giving them one excuse after another and were fed up.
  • Peer pressure – a strong influence of a group of people who are similar to you in age or social circle, who want everyone to act as they do.
    • There is too much peer pressure on young girls to have the same hair style, clothes and body that many of them end up having some real problems with self-esteem.
  • Bullying – the behavior of a person who hurts or frightens someone smaller or less powerful, often making them do something they do not want to do.
    • Bullying has always been a problem but today kids also have to deal with online bullying which adds even more pressure.
  • Bully – the person who does the bullying
    • In many cases, the kids who are the bullies often come from unstable situations at home.

Vocabulary and phrases from the minute 3 – 5

  • To stand up to someone – to deal with someone in an effective manner.
    • They are trying to teach young kids to stand up to bullies.
  • Lynching – the act of killing someone without a legal trial, usually by hanging them. In the context of the podcast. Clare was using this expression to say that people publicly attack people for no reason.
    • They gave him a real lynching even though they weren’t sure he was the one who committed the crime.
  • Clip on the ear – a quick hit on the side of one’s head.
    • In the past, it was quite normal for a parent to give their children a clip on the ear. Today it is not so common.
  • Instilling values –to put a value or principle gradually into someone’s mind, so that it has a strong influence on the way that person thinks or behaves.
    • We try to instill values such as community and bonds between people in our children instead of technology.
  • Name and shame – a phrase used to say that someone should be called out for what they are doing and shamed for their bad behavior.
    • I saw someone stealing a wallet so I said in a loud voice, ‘That man is stealing your wallet’ . That way we could name and shame for doing it.

Vocabulary and phrases from minute 5 – the end

  • Bystanders/Onlookers – someone who is standing by watching something take place but does not take part in it.
    • As the police began to hit the man on the ground the bystanders just watched or took videos.
    • There were many onlookers for the street performers, but in the end no one gave them any money.
  • Calling someone out – when someone says out loud that someone is doing something wrong.
    • Janet and her boyfriend were fighting and she called him out about every lie he ever told her.
  • One bad apple spoils the bunch – people use this to refer to a situation where they believe one person’s negative demeanor or bad behavior can affect a whole group of people, influencing them to have a similar negative attitude or to engage in the same bad behavior.
    • Everything was fine until Jimmy came and then everyone was running around screaming. Well, you know what they say, one bad apple spoils the bunch.  
  • Down with …! – something you say, write or shout to show your opposition to someone or something.
    • Jenny always used to say ‘Down with love!’ but now she’s about to be married and is as happy as ever.
  • Feeble – weak, without energy, strength or power
    • I think the opposition party needs a stronger response to the new amendment than the feeble one they gave last night. 


vocab rehab - interior del coche

Vocabulario interior del coche

En el post anterior te explicamos todos las partes del exterior del coche, pero el vocabulario del interior del coche tambien puede resultar necesario. Alquilar un coche para viajar este verano no puede ser más fácil.

Conduciendo en un pais que no es el tuyo

Recuerdo  la primera clase de conducir que tomé en España. Había vivido ya más de 10 años en países de habla hispana, pero no sabía ni cómo llamar al volante. ¿Cómo puede explicarse que no sabía los nombres de las diferentes partes en el interior del coche? Tenía una licencia de conducir desde los 16 años pero en este tema mi español estaba en blanco.

Muchas veces no aprendemos el vocabulario necesario hasta que lo tenemos que utilizar. Y ese fue mi caso. Así que hice un esfuerzo para explicarle al profesor de la auto-escuela la función de cada cosa dentro del coche para mostrarle que si hablaba Castellano, solo que no sabía los nombres de esas cosas.

Así que, no quiero que te pase lo mismo. Aquí tienes todo el vocabulario necesario para hablar con cualquiera sobre las partes del interior del coche.

Vocabulario para interior del coche con traducciones y ejemplos

  • Steering Wheel – volante  
    • Don’t grab the steering wheel while I’m driving! That’s very dangerous.
  • Claxon (UK) / Horn (US) – bocina
    • I really don’t like when people use their claxon for everything. Sometimes it is not necessary.
  • Storage compartment (UK) / Glove compartment (US) – guantera
    • I usually leave my wallet in the glove compartment when I go hiking because I don’t think I’ll need it.
  • Door handle – manilla
    • Careful with the door handle. I think one of the screws are loose and it may come off.
  • Stick shift – palanca de cambios
  • Gas pedal – acelerador   
    • There’s an expression that goes ‘put the pedal to the medal’. It means that you should step on the gas pedal so hard that it hits the metal of the car and you go as fast as you can.
  • Brake pedal – pedal de freno
    • In the beginning I found it difficult to use my right foot for the brake pedal since I was always used to using my left.
  • Clutch – embrague
    • I found that the hardest part about learning to drive was using the clutch to start the car.
  • Air bag – airbag
    • Most cars today have air bags for both the driver and the passenger as well as for the back seat passengers.
  • Vent – conducto
    • We had the air conditioning on high but nothing was coming out. It was because we had the vents closed!
  • Indicator (UK) / Turn signal (US) – indicador
    • In the US we always put our turn signal on before looking to see if I can get over, but in Spain you need to make sure you can get over and then put your turn signal on. This can causes a lot of confusion and angry drivers.

¡Buen viaje!

vocab exterior coche

Vocabulario: partes de un coche en inglés

Tal vez hablas con fluidez en ingles pero llega al momento de alquilar un coche y de repente hay mucho vocabulario: partes de un coche en inglés que no sabes o nunca has utilizado. Aquí te enseñamos las partes del exterior del coche para que tu próxima adventura sea más emocionante.

Vocabulario para el exterior del coche

Translations and examples – Parts of a car

  • Tyre (UK) / Tire (US) – neumático / llanta  
    • I was late to work today because I got a flat tyre.
  • Wheel – rueda
    • A song that we sing to our children is called ‘The wheels on the bus go round and round’.
  • Mirror – espejo  
    • I always use my mirrors before changing lanes so I know there is no one next to me.
  • Indicator (UK) / Turn signal (US) –  indicador 
    • I really can’t stand it when people do not use their indicators in a roundabout.
  • Headlight – las luces cortas 
    • I think most cars today have automatic headlights that come on when it is dark outside.
  • Number plate (UK) / License plate (US) – matricula  
    • When I was young we would play a game to see who could find a license plate from each state.
  • Bumper – parachoques
    • I scratched the bumper a little on my way out the garage. I hope my insurance will cover it.
  • Bonnet (UK) / Hood (US) – capó
    • Pop the hood so we can check the oil.
  • Windscreen (UK) / Windshield (US) – paraprisas 
    • We had a crack in the windshield so we had to get it replaced.
  • Windscreen wipers (UK) / Windshield wipers (US) – limpiaparaprisas
    • We have automatic windscreen wipers on our car, so the speed adjusts to the amount of rain falling.
  • Aerial (UK) / Antenna (US) – antena 
    • A few years ago, people were stealing all the antennas from the cars. It was really annoying.
  • Hood (UK) / Trunk (US) – maletero / baúl 
    • The reason why we decided to buy this car instead of the blue one is because this one has a bigger trunk.  

Aprender más vocabulario

Vocab Rehab

Ya que conoces el vocabulario partes de un coche, aprendes más vocabulario con nuestros posts anteriores de Vocab Rehab

Expressions Sessions - Opinions

Mejorar tu Speaking en el examen

¿Siempre dices lo mismo para dar tu opinión en inglés? Para mejorar tu puntuación en el examen, deja de usar ‘I think’ y empieza a usar estas frases.

Mejorar tu puntuación en el Speaking

Lo difícil de los exámenes de inglés es que tienes muy poco tiempo para mostrar tu nivel. En el Oxford Test of English por ejemplo, tienes entre 20 y 30 segundos para dar tu opinión y tienes que contestar varias preguntas. Así que no puedes utilizar ‘I think…‘ una y otra vez porque no te van a otorgar un B2 si repites siempre lo mismo.

Tampoco es recomendable memorizar lo que vas a decir ya que no sabes exactamente lo que te van a preguntar, pero lo que si puedes hacer es empezar a utilizar con naturalidad las frases que te mostramos a continuación para decir tu opinión. Estas frases te pueden ayudar tanto en el Speaking como en el Writing.

Como prepararse para el examen

Hay 3 claves en las que debes centrarte:

  1. Fluidez
  2. Uso de gramática / vocabulario
  3. El tiempo

Así que cuando practiques,

  1. algunas veces debes intentar hablar con fluidez sin preocuparte por los fallos gramaticales.
  2. Otras veces, céntrate en hablar sin errores sin prestar demasiada atención a la fluidez. En ambas situaciones, te vendría muy bien grabarlo para luego escucharte.   
  3. Y por último, intenta hablar con fluidez, utilizando la gramática adecuada y un vocabulario variado dentro de los límites del tiempo exigidos por cada examen. Es importante acostumbrarte a estos tiempos para medir que y cuanto decir. Es muy probable que así también estés menos nervios@ a la hora del examen ya que habrás preparado todos estos aspectos.

Cada examen tiene su parte en la que tendrás que expresar tus opiniones:

  • Oxford Test of English/A2-B2: En el parte 1 (20 segundos x 6 preguntas) y en el parte 4 (30 segundos x 6 preguntas)
  • FCE/B2: En el parte 3, tendrás que hablar en pareja durante 4 minutos
  • CAE/C1: En el parte 3 (4 minutos) y el parte 4 (5 minutos).

Temas habituales en los exámenes

Hay muchos temas que con frecuencia aparecen en los diferentes exámenes. Es bueno pensar en lo que dirías sobre estos temas. Como dije anteriormente nunca vas a poder saber exactamente lo que te van a preguntar, pero tener unas ideas sobre estos temas puede ser de gran ayuda. Haz un listado de posibles preguntas sobre los siguientes temas:

  • Health/exercise
  • Leisure/Free time
  • Shopping/Fashion
  • Sports
  • Books
  • Buildings
  • Environment
  • Travel
  • Work/Education
  • Movies/TV

Ahora que has escrito algunas preguntas y sabes cuánto tiempo vas a tener para hablar sobre ellos, es una buena idea utilizar un reloj y practicar ajustándose al tiempo fijado.


How can exercise have an impact on someone’s quality of life?

In my opinion, exercise can only improve your quality of life since you will feel better and sleep better. It’s important that everyone does some exercise every day in order to stay fit and healthy. Otherwise, we may see an increase in health problems in the future, which will have a negative impact on one’s quality of life.

Do you believe you have more or less free time than your parent’s generation?

It seems to me that we have much more free time than when our parents were younger. We tend to go to the gym or do exercise outdoors and even go to the bar for a coffee whereas my parents never really had time or even thought about doing these types of things.

Do you think fashion is something that is always changing?

In my view, fashion trends always come back at some point. They may not be exactly the same, but some part of them return. For example, high-rise jeans were in fashion in the 80s and now we see girls wearing them again. They may not have the same hairstyles or the bright colors, but the jeans are the same.

Do you think sports players earn too much money?

As I see it, football players earn way too much money. I know that they get a lot of their money from advertisements, but I still don’t think justifies them making so much, especially when the country is not doing so well economically. Surely sports clubs can reinvest some of that money into their communities.

Will e-books eventually replace printed books?

I would say that although e-books are really popular, printed books will always be around. You made a good point about how printing less books is good for the environment but I just love the experience of opening up a good book and feeling the pages. I think most people would say the same.

Should copy-cat architecture be banned?

Personally, I don’t believe it should be illegal for people to make copy-cat architecture, but I don’t really like it. But all forms of art today are a mix of someone else’s ideas, so why should architecture be any different? What do you feel about it?

Should individuals or the government be responsible for lowering the effects of climate change?

As far as I’m concerned, we do not do enough as a country to take care of the environment. I know that every person needs to do what they can but without policies governing the big corporations, we will never lower the amount of pollution in the air.

What are more important to know when visiting another country, the language or the culture?

It seems to me that cultural differences are often more important to learn than the language when you are in a foreign country. It’s good to know the language to be able to communicate with the people but being respectful and knowing how to act can make a bigger difference. We all know the importance body language has on communication.

Is working from home common in your country? What do you prefer?

As I see it, in Spain people will work from home more often in the future. In many countries they have been doing it for years, and it really cuts down on costs for the company. Personally, I would prefer to work from home at least two days a week so I can get paperwork done without any distractions.

People are going less and less to the cinema these days. Why do you think that is?

Most people would agree that they prefer to watch movies and TV series at home instead of going to the theatre. For the price of four tickets to the cinema, you can get a yearly subscription to an on-demand streaming service. Having said that, I still enjoy seeing an action film on a big screen, but I only go maybe once a year because it’s cheaper and more comfortable watching it from home.

Off the cuff, Episode 10: a Carp load of football

Learn English Podcast : Off the Cuff : A crap load of football

In Episode 10 of off the cuff Clare and Annie talk about #Ronaldo #UEFA #football #CocaCola and the topic of influencers. How much influence should they really have on us and on things like #LGBTQ rights? Find vocabulary and transcripts below.

Vocabulary from Episode 10

  • What’s on the menu today – this is a fun way of asking what the topic of the show is today. You can use it in any situation where there is a planned schedule, although it may not always be appropriate for work settings. In the example below, we want to know what the activities for the day are.
    • I know you’ve been planning this trip for months, so what’s on the menu today?
  • Obscure – not known by many people. In this case, Annie is being sarcastic, since football is well-known all over the world, particularly in Spain, where they currently reside.
    • I forgot the name of the island they are visiting. It’s some obscure place off the coast.
  • To be glued to your television – If someone is glued to their television, it means that they are very attentive to what is happening on TV.
    • I don’t watch much TV, but when the Olympics are on, I am just glued to the TV.
  • Crap load – this is a way to express a large quantity of something but in a way that shows your disapproval of the amount.
    • Those kids have a crap load of toys and yet they’re always bored.
  • 31 million – 31,000,000
    • I do not make 31 million euros a year.
  • to get/take a hit from something – this is used to say that you will be negatively impacted by what happened.
    • The economy took a huge hit from COVID.
  • to be down something, usually money – having less than you expected or usually have.
    • I lost a bet and now I’m down 100 euros.
  • to get wind of a something – to find out about something, especially a secret.
    • I don’t want my boss to get wind of my new job.
  • LGBTQ – Acronym used for referring to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer people.
    • Pride month is celebrated in order to acknowledge and support the LGBTQ community.
  • Paedophiles – people who are sexually attracted to pre-pubescent children.
    • There is a controversial online website where you can see if there is a registered paedophile living near your home.
  • God forbid – This expression is usually used to show sarcasm as Clare is doing here in the podcast. We usually use this expression to show that we think the other person is overreacting or wrong.
    • God forbid I come into work 2 minutes late because I was stuck in traffic!
  • UEFA – acronym for Union of European Football Association.
    • UEFA decided not to punish the German player who showed his support for the LGBTQ community.
  • get down on two knees – here Clare is referencing the players who supported Black Lives Matter by kneeling down on one knee. Since players may not be able to wear any kind of arm bands for Gay Pride, getting down on two knees could be an alternative. She is showing irony that one thing is ok, but not the other.

To find out more about the topics discussed today, you can find them at the following links:
NYT: Munich Wanted to Light Its Stadium in a Pride Rainbow. European Soccer Said No.
The Guardian: Hungary passes law banning LGBT content in schools or kids’ TV
Business Standard: Footballer Cristiano Ronaldo knocks off $4 billion from Coca-Cola’s value

Transcript of episode 10

Clare: Hi, Annie.
Annie: Hi, Clare. How are you?
Clare: Good, good.
Annie: Happy Pride Month.
Clare: Happy Pride Month. Yes. So what’s on the menu today? What are we going to talk about?
Annie: Anything but Coca Cola?
Clare: Why do you think it might influence people? Okay, Let’s talk about football. That doesn’t have any influence on people.
Annie: No, no. Football. Football’s, like this obscure thing that happens.
Clare: You mean you haven’t been glued to your television? You haven’t had two PCRs a day just to make sure that you can go to watch all these football matches and be there.
Annie: I mean, you know, I don’t even know if my television has football, and I’m okay with that.
Clare: Okay, so let’s take it back to football again. Okay?
Annie: Let’s talk about football. Okay.
Clare: Let’s talk about. Let’s talk about football and Coca Cola. Why would we talk about football and Coca Cola and influence? Because we’re talking about influence.
Annie: Yeah, Okay, so I don’t watch football as, as I just mentioned, but I do know what’s happening around the game of football.
Clare: Okay.
Annie: All right. So let me explain. There is this football player who makes what we would say a crap load of money, right?
Clare: And, does he play for Alaves?
Annie: No, no, he doesn’t. His name is Ronaldo. I think you might have heard of him, because even though I don’t know anything about football, I do know that there’s this man named Ronaldo who makes, like, 31 million a year and he was sitting down for a press conference with a can of Coca Cola in front of him or a bottle of Coca Cola, and he decided to move it and tell his audience to drink more water.
Clare: Okay, so that was his influence over his followers or whatever. What exactly did that influence do?
Annie: Well, there’s more to this story, right? So, not only does this man who makes crap loads of money tell everyone not to drink Coca Cola, but to drink more water, but then it has a 5 billion impact on Coca Cola.
Clare: Are you serious?
Annie: I am totally serious, Clare.
Clare: But surely those… Coca Cola  are his boss? No? because the sponsors are the people who pay this 31 million to all these players.
Annie: Surely. I mean, part of the money.
Clare: Were his friends annoyed? Were his fellow players annoyed? Were Coca Cola annoyed or just everybody’s just a… Who’s the bigger influencer here? Coca Cola? Ronaldo? It’s a bit…
Annie: Well, I’m sure his team. I don’t know enough about football or this story other than that, but I’m sure his team gets a hit from that. Or maybe if the Coca Cola decides not to sponsor them, I’m sure that would affect their whole team.
Clare: He might be down a few billion himself.
Annie: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Well, I would kind of hope, I have to admit, because I think that the fact that he makes 31 million a year is a bit too much. But anyway, it’s interesting, the influence this man has and football.
Clare: Let’s go back to football again.
Annie: Okay. Okay, fine.
Clare: Because, you know, it’s important, influential. it’s happening this month like, Yeah. So as I said, I wasn’t watching matches either like. But again, the world around football, I do get wind of a few things. June, as you know, is LGBTQ month. And there was a match in between Germany and Hungary. And at the same time, the Prime Minister, a law has been or a decree has been passed where they’re not allowed to depict or promote homosexuality or anything homosexual onto under 18s. And as part of a law against paedophiles, you know you can connected.
Annie: What ?
Clare: Now, you cannot connect the two? Right?
Annie: I cannot connect the two. Wait, what?
Clare: In Hungry, it’s believed. And this is kind of the law, like, because of this, is that if two people meet, especially for the same sex, it’s not healthy.
Annie: Okay.
Clare: So they meet, you know, God forbid they fall in love.
Annie: Okay.
Clare: Set up a house and they might even adopt children.
Annie: Right. Right.
Clare: Okay. No. Because what they really are are Paedophiles.
Annie: Oh Clare.
Clare: That’s why I know. It’s just sad. Real. Anyway, back into football, it’s come.
Annie: No, I can’t even joke about that topic because it’s not funny.
Clare: It’s not funny.
Annie: It’s not.
Clare: So Let’s go back to football.
Annie: Okay. So go back to football because I prefer to talk about football than that conversation.
Clare: I know, but football influences things you see. So there was a match between Germany and Hungry around the same time with this crazy decree or whatever was passed. And the match was in Munich.
Annie: Right.
Clare: And they wanted to, like, they’ve done in another Stadium. I think they wanted to paint it pink or light it up pink.
Annie: Okay.
Clare: And UEFA said no, because it was kind of a political statement. Again, don’t hold me to that statement. But something along those lines…
Annie: yeah.
Clare: Because it was too political. Then there was a German goalkeeper, I think, who had a band on his arm again with the LBGTQ support or whatever. And they’re going to decide now whether that is too politically, yeah. So what do you do? Do you get down on two knees?
Annie: Well that’s interesting.
Clare: A knee for this, a knee for that
Annie: Yeah Exactly. We’re going to have to start doing, like, hand gestures.
Clare: It, it’s sad. It’s sad. It’s not funny. But it’s a sad reality no? And again. What are we talking about? We’re talking about football.