FLUENT ENGLISH

Let's enjoy English!

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? #14

compare 16
UK & USA の違いの終わり&始まり。。。

Do you know this phrase? ~ “Every ending has a new beginning.”

My use of it today is this ~ I am finishing this week’s theme with a couple of easy ‘differences’ but it is also the ‘start’ of next week's theme ~ "UK & USA Differences".

Most of you probably already know that there are several words in the English language that are spelt differently in these two countries. These particular words have the same meanings but as they are spelt differently, it can sometimes be confusing since people often mix them up in the same sentence when they write.

UK
* colour
* favour
* flavour
* Mum
* calibre
* centre
* theatre
* practise
* catalogue
* summarise

US
* color
* favor
* flavor
* Mom
* caliber
* center
* theater
* practice
* catalog
* summarize

There are a whole bunch more but these “u” and “re” and “se” differences (in the UK) are the main ones. Knowing the differences is very useful, as mixing them up in the same sentence is not good.


I hope you now understand the differences ~

Next week I will be taking this further with UK & USA words that have different meanings ~ look forward to that ...

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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? #13

8-3-13 work it out

今日言葉の違いは。。。?
‘So what are today’s differences, Robin?’, you ask.
Well, they have to do with fixing, repairing and solving problems or situations.

Do you know these commonly used phrases? What is similar and what is different? “It will all workout” and “You can figure it out”.

Yes, they both use the word ‘out’ - that’s right - and they both talk about fixing/solving/repairing/understanding something.

Quite often they are misused, so here are a couple of examples to help you 'figure' them out:

“I know they are having difficulties, but it will all workout” -> “Yes, I hope things will workout for them, as they are such a lovely couple.”

“This question is really difficult Mum, I can’t figure it out!? -> “You are a smart kid, you’ll figure it out.”


As usual, for the Dictionary-fans;

Work out for the best

* [for a bad situation] to turn out all right in the end. Don't worry, everything will work out for the best.

Work out
* (of an equation) be capable of being solved.
* (work out at) be calculated at:the losses work out at £2.94 a share
* have a good or specified result:things don’t always work out that way
* engage in vigourous physical exercise: they regularly walked, danced, ran and worked out at the gym


Figure something out
* informal solve or discover the cause of a problem: he was trying to figure out why the camera wasn’t working
* an understanding of the causes or basis of a problem. (*Typically: determine ~; figure out ~; find ~; get to ~; get at ~.) It will take a little more study to figure out the root of the problem.



I hope you now understand the differences ~


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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? #12

8-2-13 finally

今日の違いは何でしょ。。。

Finally”, Friday is here -> “at last” I can enjoy the weekend.

Yes, ‘finally’ & ‘at last’ do sound fairly similar but they actually have slightly different meanings. Read on ...

Finally” is used relating to a ‘time-frame’ - as I wrote above - ‘finally’ it is the end of the week. “At last” is used when something can/will happen, as the result of something finishing.


Here are some Dictionary meanings for you English-buffs out there ~

Finally
adv
1. after a long delay; eventually
2. at the end or final point; lastly
3. completely; conclusively; irrevocably
4. in the end; finally, he put his tie on
5. as the last or final point: linking what follows with the previous statements, as in a speech or argument; “And finally, I would like to say...


At last - as the end result of a succession or process; "at last the winter was over"

Idioms:
at last
After a considerable length of time; finally.


I hope you now understand the differences ~

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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? #11

8-1-13 wonderful

Okay, where shall we go today? It is “nice” that I have some time on my hands and a “good” thing that I have a “great” amount of patience, so I can help everyone’s “wonderful” brain increase its knowledge.

Yes, these are today’s words ~ all with a similar meaning but used in a different way, and with a different degree of emphasis ~ from least to most:

Nice
Good
Great
Wonderful



Nice, good and great are used more commonly than wonderful.

Wonderful is usually reserved for something that is especially nice.
Good means it desirable or it's nice. Great means it's better than good, as in very good. Wonderful means extremely good or an inspiring delight.

For example:
1. "This is nice." -> It's tasty.
2. "This is good." -> I'll eat more than one bite.
3. "This is great." -> I'll finish the entire plate.
4. "This is wonderful!" -> I might ask for the recipe because I'll want to eat it again and share it with my friends.


Here are some dictionary-meanings for those who like to look things up...

Nice
1. Pleasing and agreeable in nature: had a nice time.
2. Having a pleasant or attractive appearance: a nice dress; a nice face.
3. Exhibiting courtesy and politeness: a nice gesture.
4. Of good character and reputation; respectable.

Good
1. Being positive or desirable in nature; not bad or poor: a good experience; good news from the hospital.
2. Having the qualities that are desirable or distinguishing in a particular thing: a good exterior paint; a good joke.
3. Serving the desired purpose or end; suitable: Is this a good dress for the party?
4. Not spoiled or ruined: The milk is still good.
5. In excellent condition; sound: a good tooth.
6. Superior to the average; satisfactory: a good student.

Great
1. Large in quantity or number: A great throng awaited us.
2. Of outstanding significance or importance: a great work of art.
4. Superior in quality or character; noble: "he was great
5. Powerful; influential: one of the great nations of the West.
6. Eminent; distinguished: a great leader.

Wonderful
1. Capable of eliciting wonder; astonishing: "The ... whale is one of the most wonderful animals in the world" (Charles Darwin).
Admirable; excellent: "The spirit of the movement was wonderful. It was joyous and grave at the same time"


I hope you now understand the differences ~


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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? #10

7-31-13 must-have

These are 3 words that we often use when stating we are going to do or have to do something. There are actually big differences between “must”, “have to” and “need to” ~ hopefully this will clear things up for you ...

Must” is 必ず100% (イヤでも)やらないといけない/強い命令
For example; You must pay the rent by the 1st of every month.
One must stop when the light is red!


(As a need-to-know, the casual term ‘must item’ is mainly used in the USA but it is also understood in the UK.)

Have to” is (したくないけど) やらなくてはいけない
For example; I have to go to bed.
I have to go on a business trip tomorrow.


Need to” 〜しなくっちゃ!
This is a softer-version of needing to do something.
For example: I need to get my hair cut.
I need to go to the toilet.



I hope you now understand the differences ~

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