Friday, June 22, 2012

Strange Laws: The Answers

Good day all! Here are the answers to the latest Six Minute English Quiz about texting and walking:

1. Official question: there are strange but true laws which exist in the UK. Which one of these three is NOT a real law?
c) It's illegal to speak French in front of a dog.√
2. What accident happened to Rosie recently? A man bumped into her while he was texting, and offered no apology at all.
3. About the new law in Fort Lee, New Jersey: people are forbidden to text specifically while crossing a road.
4. The punishment is an eighty-five dollar fine. (Or: an $85 fine, etc.)
5. In Los Angeles recently, a man was texting on his phone when he very nearly walked into which wild animal? A bear.
6. What did a teenage girl in China fall into while she was using her phone? A sinkhole. [Sinkholes are caused by subsidence of the surface of the land. Water, flowing through the earth, causes caverns to form; these eventually collapse, causing 'sinkholes'.
7. And where did a woman in a shopping mall end up? In a water fountain.
Did you enjoy the video of the man unexpectedly meeting a bear in a Los Angeles suburb  while he was texting? Entertaining, I think you will agree.
Coming next: a quiz about the London Olympics. Do visit our sister site: "English, Actually". This is your space to practise writing, and be corrected.
Have a very good, if rather warm, weekend!
More very soon,
Yours,
Mike

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Six Minute English: Strange Laws?

Hello everyone. It's time now for a Six Minute English Quiz. And what better than one about the seemingly strange laws that one hears about from time to time.

A town in New Jersey, USA, has recently passed a law making it illegal to walk and send text messages at the same time. How strange do you think that really is?

Here are a few questions to help you focus your listening. Read them first:

1. Official question: there are strange but true laws which exist in the UK. Which one of these three is NOT a real law?
a) It's illegal to enter the Houses of Parliament wearing a suit of armour.
b) A pregnant woman can go to the toilet anywhere she wants.
c) It's illegal to speak French in front of a dog.
2. What accident happened to Rosie recently?
3. About the new law in Fort Lee, New Jersey: people are forbidden to text specifically while ...... [complete the sentence.]
4. The punishment is ..... [specify the punishment.]
5. In Los Angeles recently, a man was texting on his phone when he very nearly walked into which wild animal?
6. What did a teenage girl in China fall into while she was using her phone?
7. And where did a woman in a shopping mall end up?
Now listen to the programme. Then post your answers to the questions on the Tag Board or in a comment.
And by way of a bonus, here's a link to the video about the man in Los Angeles. Scary!!
I look forward to answers from everybody! Let's all participate.
More very soon indeed. Yours,
Mike

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Those Diamond Jubilee Facts: The Answers

Hello everyone. Here are the answers to the quiz on the Diamond Jubilee:

1-2. The Queen's first official visit to Italy was from 2 to 5 May 1961 as a guest of President Gronchi.
3. Her most recent visit was 16-19 October 2000 Italy, visiting President Ciampi.
4. Her first official visit to the Vatican City was 5 May 1961 Vatican City, and the Pope at the time was John XXIII.
5. Her most recent visit to the Vatican was on 7 October 1980, and the Pope at the time was John Paul II.
6. The Italian President who visited the Queen in 1969 was Giuseppe Saragat.
7. The most recent visit to the UK by an Italian President was 23-26 October 1990, and the visitor was President Francesco Cossiga.
8. In 1951 the then Princess Elizabeth visited Canada with her husband.
Apologies for the typing mistake in the original quiz, which read 'Prince Elizabeth'.
9. When, on Wednesday 6th February 1952, Princess Elizabeth learned that she had become Queen, she was staying at 'Treetops', a game lodge in a remote area of Kenya.
 10. The first British monarch to celebrate a Jubilee was King George III, when he celebrated his Golden Jubilee in October 1809.
11. Five of the well known rock stars who played at the Queen's Jubilee Concert could include Elton John, Robbie Williams, Cliff Richard, Paul McCartney and Grace Jones. But there were many others - Kylie Minogue and Stevie Wonder, to name but two.

Many thanks to Salvatore and Catia who answered the questions on the Tag Board. You have been fantastic. But where was everyone else?

Time for me to close down now, but I'll be back very soon with some pointers on using Internet to answer your grammar questions. And a fresh Six Minute English Quiz is coming up. Watch this space! as they say in the classics.

Yours,
Mike

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee: A Few Facts.

 
Today, Tuesday, is the last day of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations. The events have been well covered by the world's media. But how much do you know about the Queen's long life and career? There is no shortage of information online. Let's go to the official Diamond Jubilee web site. Scroll down the front page and click on "Fact Files". Read the page carefully. Here are some questions:

1. When was the Queen's first official visit to Italy?
2. Who was her host?
3. And when was her most recent visit to Italy, and who was her host?
4. When was the Queen's first official visit to the Vatican City, and who was the Pope at the time?
5. When was her most recent visit to the Vatican, and who was the Pope?
6. Which Italian President visited the Queen in 1969?
7. When was the most recent visit to the UK by an Italian President?

Back to the home page of the Diamond Jubilee web site. Without any further help from me, can you answer these last three questions:

8. In 1951, which country did Prince Elizabeth, as she then was, visit with her husband?
9. And where was she when, on Wednesday 6th February 1952, she learned that she had become Queen?
10. Who was the first British monarch to celebrate a Jubilee, and when was it?
11. Name five well-known rock stars who performed at the Jubilee Concert. (You'll find the BBC News website helpful for this question.)

That's enough questions! Post your answers on the Tag Board or in a Comment. Who will be the first person to answer all the questions correctly? If that person comes to see me at our office near Piazza di Spagna, we will have a celebratory drink at one of the many excellent local bars.

More very soon!
Yours,
Mike