実践ビジネス英語 2009年1月分


2009年01月第1週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (1)



The team comments on companies trying to control the use of social networking sites on company time.


● yield to ~ ~に屈する

Yield is a verb in English that means "surrender" or "be defeated" or "give up the right to someone else." On highways, sometimes you see a sign that says "Yield." That means the other flow of traffic has the right of way and you don’t. You have to wait for the others to go by and leave a space open for you. The word comes from old, very old English word that used to mean "pay."


● backlash 反発

Tony Hughes also uses the word backlash. Backlash comes from using whips. To count each whip stroke, you call it a lash. A backlash is a whipping motion that comes backward. So it’s an adverse reaction or a bad reaction to some action that you’ve already taken. It’s also sometimes called push-back or resistance.

backlash     a strong negative reaction by a number of people against recent events, especially against political or social developments : The 1970s saw the first backlash against the women’s movement. /  The management fear a backlash from fans over the team’s poor performances.   (LDCOE)


● break やすみ

Summer is usually not called "summer break," because it’s not a pause within a larger time frame. It’s actually the change from one year to the next.


● productivity の発音

You might have heard Jay Tyson say productivity, pronouncing the first vowel sound as /ɑ/. Many people also pronounce it /ou/ — /proudʌktɪvətɪ/. Both are fine.


● on company time = during office hours


● pull the plug やめにする

"Pull the plug" refers to taking power away from some kind of electronic gadget or instrument. Generally, though, as an idiom, "pull the plug" means "stop something." You can use it in almost any situation. It doesn’t have to have anything to do with electronics or electricity.

pull the plug (on something)   <informal>    to prevent a plan, business etc from being able to continue, especially by deciding not to give it any more money:  The Swiss entrepreneur has pulled the plug on any further investment in the firm.   (LDOCE)


● time wasting and procrastination

I think managers have worried about these two problems for a long time, even within their own behavior. But also computers make it a little easier to do it without getting caught. So that’s probably what Kinkaid is referring to here.


● computer as a productivity enhancer or a source of inefficiency

Productivity in computers has been a big topic ever since companies started introducing them into their offices, especially. I don’t remember hearing so much discussion in plants and production facilities, but especially in offices. I suppose part of it is because it takes a while to get used to using a computer, so the first few years it was just money out, not much return. But once people got used to computers, I think there has been a huge rise in productivity, even among white-collar workers in offices.




2009年01月第1週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (2)



The group talks about distractions and the lack of privacy online at work.


● knowledge worker

A knowledge worker is a kind of white-collar worker. They’re the people who especially focus on, or handle, the company data and information.


● untamed information flows 勝手に流れる情報

untamed   allowed to remain in a wild state; not changed, controlled or influenced by anyone (OALD)


● e-mail の処理に関する日米差

I think I’ve noticed the differences in how people in the U.S. handle their e-mail and how people in Japan handle their e-mail; generally, of course, each individual’s a bit different. But I think generally in the U.S., people will take a look at their e-mail and see what needs to be done that day and the things they don’t have to read, you know, if they’re just copied or things that don’t need to be done that day, they’ll just leave for the next day. It seems to me, though, that Japanese people tend to read and answer all of their e-mail every day, even if they have to stay overtime to finish it up.


● under siege 包囲されて

"Under siege" is a phrase that comes from war. An army carries out a siege, when it surrounds an enemy and waits for them to run out of food or water. Usually the people being sieged are in some sort of fort or some strong, fairly easily defended place. The siege often has many small attacks on the target. Nowadays you can call almost anything under siege, if it’s in a situation where it seems to be surrounded and it’s being attacked or challenged again and again and again.

be under siege a) to be surrounded by an army in a siege b) to be being criticized, attacked, or threatened all the time: The TV station has been under siege from irate viewers phoning in to complain.  (LDOCE)


● lazybones 怠け者

Lazybones is kind of an interesting word. The singular and plural are the same: lazybones. So depending on whether you’re talking about one person or many people, you choose the verb accordingly. It’s been used in English since the 16th century, so it has a long history. A similar phrase is lazy Susan. But lazy Susan is a kind of revolving tray. In English, it’s what you would call that part of the table in Chinese restaurants that revolves. Also sometimes lazy Susans are found in cabinets that have hard-to-reach corners.

・ lazybones = used to refer to a lazy person  (OALD)

・  lazy Susan 回転盆,回転棚,回転卓


● sales reps 営業担当者 

・ sales rep = sales representative     an employee of a company who travels around a particular area selling the company’s goods to shops/stores, etc.  (OALD)


● happy medium 中間,中庸,折衷(案)

a happy medium (between something and something) a way of doing something that is not extreme but is somewhere between two possible choices: I always tried to strike a happy medium between having a home that looked like a bomb had hit it and becoming obsessively tidy. (LDOCE)


● grim reminder いやなことを思い出させるもの

Grim is a word that means unpleasant, or forbidding or sinister. It draws(?) up a kind of a dark and unpleasant atmosphere. It’s probably not related to Grimm’s Fairy Tales. In that case, Grimm is a family name.


● rekindle 再燃させる

Also, rekindle. Rekindle means "revive" or "renew." Probably employees have complained about company censorship of private e-mail in the past. Kindle itself is a verb that means "build a fire" or "start a fire" or "ignite." And the material that you use to get fire started is called kindling.

・ kindling たきつけ




2009年01月第1週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (3)



Cortez observes that you should act as if you are being monitored when you’re on line and Tyson talks about a salesman caught stealing company data to take to a competitor.


● belittle 見下す,けなす

belittle = to make somebody or the things that somebody does seem unimportant : She felt her husband constantly belittled her achievements.  (OALD)


● The walls have ears. 壁に耳あり

"The walls have ears" is a very old expression in English, meaning "you never know who’s listening, anybody could be listening, you’d better be careful."

Another phrase that warns people to be careful with what they are talking about, also from the wartime, is "loose lips sink ships."

・ Loose lips sink ships   直訳は「しまりのない唇は船を沈める」。うっかりしたひと言が,利敵行為であるということ。  → The Phrase Finder


● legality について

Hughes is talking about the legality of what companies can do. Sometimes in English, people will talk about the narrow legal meaning, which is what Hughes is doing here, and then they will say, "Well, yes, it’s legal, but is it moral? Is it right?"


● eavesdrop 立ち聞き・盗み聞きする

Eavesdropping is kind of an interesting word in English. Some people mishear it and think it’s *easedropping — e-a-s-e-dropping. When people mishear like that, it’s called a mondegreen. The word itself actually comes from the eaves of a house. The eaves is the part of the roof that extends out beyond the outside walls. And people used to stand under there sometimes when it was raining to avoid getting wet. And of course if you’re standing under the eaves, you are very near the walls, so you can probably hear what’s going on in the house. So through that pathway, eavesdropping became the verb for listening to things you really shouldn’t be listening to.

・ mondegreen  聞き間違いによって別な意味で解釈されてしまう語 → Wikipedia


● fabric of trust 信頼の基盤・構造

・ the fabric of a society is its basic structure, way of life, relationships, and traditions (LDOCE)


draw a line between ~ ~の間の線引きをする,区別する

When you draw a line between two things, you either distinguish between them, meaning you find the point where they begin to differ, or you separate them; you show exactly how they are different and that they are two different things.


poke one’s nose into ~ ~に干渉する

Kinkaid talks about "a corporate nose", which sounds a little bit funny, but noses are often used in phrases in English, to talk about paying attention to things that are none of your business. If someone is asking you or telling you or getting too closely involved into your business, your private matters, you can tell them to stop poking their nose in your business. They are just coming too close to matters where they don’t belong. So "poking a corporate nose" into what employees are doing means the employees think the company is going too far into their private business.

You can also describe a person who regularly does those kinds of things as a nosy person.

・ If someone pokes their nose into something or sticks their nose into something, they try to interfere with it even though it does not concern them. (INFORMAL) : We don’t like strangers who poke their noses into our affairs. / Why did you have to stick your nose in?    = meddle    (COBUILD)

nosy   = too interested in things that do not concern you, especially other people’s affairs


● privileged info 部外秘の情報

privileged <law>   privileged information is private and is not allowed to be made public by law  (LDOCE)


● jump ship 会社を辞める

To jump ship is a phrase that’s often used in English to mean defect or desert or quit, go away, give up — words like that. Jump ship is a maritime phrase. And it was used to describe sailors who left their ship, usually at a foreign port, and disappeared. They escaped from their duty, whether they’d signed up for it voluntarily or whether they had been pressed into service.

jump ship a) to leave an organization that you are working for, especially in order to join another: The best employees jumped ship at the first opportunity.
b) to leave a ship on which you are working as a sailor, without permission   (LDOCE)




2009年01月第2週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (4)



Hughes talks about his grandson and other youngsters who don’t worry about being observed because they grew up online with the different idea of privacy.


breach 契約などを破る

Breach is the verb that means "break the rules," "break something," or "break through." It spells b-r-e-a-c-h, but the same word [briːʧ] with a different spelling, b-r-e-e-c-h, means the buttocks. There are some kinds of pants called knee breeches, and trousers are sometimes called britches, which is another variation of the word breech.


underhand tactics 不正な策略

Hughes also talks about "underhand tactics." The adjective underhand is also used, probably just about equally, as underhanded. Both of them are acceptable; both of them can be used in any situation. Whichever one comes easy to you, please choose it.

・  underhand also underhanded     dishonest and done secretly: They did it all in such an underhand way. / He’s been involved in some underhand dealings.  (LDOCE)


old-school 時代遅れの

If you call something old-school, you’re saying it’s traditional or conservative. You can use it positively or negatively depending on the context. Sometimes old-school is a good thing, and sometimes old-school is bad and you wanna criticize it.

old-school old-fashioned or traditional


reality TV 一般の人の生活の様子を見せる番組

reality TV television programmes that feature real people doing real things, for example police officers chasing after stolen cars, or people who have been put in different situations and filmed continuously over a period of weeks or months (LDOCE)



World Wide Web

I haven’t heard people actually talking about World Wide Web recently. I think nowadays people usually say "the Internet" or "online." So I wonder how many young people actually know that WWW stands for World Wide Web.


conduit 導管,パイプ役

conduit a person, an organization or a country that is used to pass things or information to other people or places


as natural as brushing their teeth

The phrase "as natural as something" is used quite a bit in English actually.  In this phrase, I don’t know the brushing teeth is natural, but everybody does it without thinking about it much. If you look online, you’ll find the phrases like as "natural as gravity," "as natural as sneezing," and I even found one web site describing labor strikes as being "as natural as argument between husbands and wives."

way back then  ・・・という昔に,かつては,という時代にさかのぼると

way back = a long time ago

back then = a long time ago when things were different


When their parents and grandparents chatted with one another, they did so by telephone.

And that’s a land line telephone as well, not even cell phones.


candid 率直に,ざっくばらんに

Hughes talks about "speaking candidly online." Candid means "honestly," "straightforwardly," and "clearly." There was even a TV show on in the U.S. called "Candid Camera." The TV show developed from an earlier radio show that had some other name, but it was the same guy doing it. Nowadays you can’t see the show on TV, regular broadcast TV or cable, but you can find it online and I think they’re still putting new videos up.




2009年01月第2週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (5)


== Key Phrases to Remember ==

lost productivity 生産性の損失


on company time 勤務時間中に ⇔ on private time

be suspended 停職・停学になる

In school, also kids are suspended if they’ve done something pretty bad. It means they can’t go back to school for a certain amount of time — a couple of days or week, whatever. And they have to later make up the work, if they want to graduate together with their class.


be distracted by ~によって注意を妨げられる,~で気が散る

In this phrase, distracted means "have your attention pulled away from what your actual focus is, but the noun distraction can be used to mean extreme mental or emotional disturbance. It’s similar to obsession. For example, you could talk about a kid loving a puppy to distraction, or you could tell someone that they’re irritating you so much they’re driving you to distraction.

・  drive somebody to distraction    to continue annoying or upsetting someone very much: The baby’s constant crying drove me to distraction. (LDOCE)


in turn 順に,今度は

You scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours. 「あなたがわたしの背中をかいてくれたら,わたしはあなたの背中をかいてあげます。」

Another very informal way people might use for saying the same thing is "I’ll trade ya (=you)."


fellow worker 仕事仲間,同僚

fellow = fell(e)a

It’s interesting because the word fellow comes from an old Norse word that meant "business partner." That idea of a partner having similarities and being together, continues even now in the word.


be aware of ~を知っている,承知している


==  あんな時,こんな時 ==

「好きだ」という表現 I like ..

アメリカ人はlove を使う

People use love to show they not only like something, but they really, really, really like it. It’s a very strong way to say you like something. But a lot of kids — I’m sure they still do this; if one kid says "Ooh, I love that car," the other kids might say, "Well, so go marry it."


イギリス人は be keen on を使う

North Americans understand this phrase, but most of them don’t use it unless they’re going for some kind of special effect.


have a soft spot (in one’s heart) for ~ ~に対して好感を持つ

If you have a soft spot for someone or something, you feel a great deal of affection for them or like them a lot. : Terry had a soft spot for me. (COBUILD)


like 対 be fond of

It’s hard to say what’s different between "to be fond of something" and "to like something." Like is probably a fall-back expression: you can use it anytime, anywhere and it won’t seem unusual. Fond is maybe a little softer sounding or a little more vague sounding. It’s similar to "dote on" someone, I think, if you are talking about people. Fond maybe sounds a little more old-fashioned or gentile. Like is a bit stronger, maybe a bit sharper than being fond of something.


go for ~

go for ~ <informal>    to like a particular type of person or thing:  Annie tends to go for older men.  (LDOCE)


be crazy about ~

This phrase "be crazy about something" is very close to saying you love something.


You can’t beat Hokkaido crabs in this restaurant.

If you say you can’t beat a particular thing you mean that it is the best thing of its kind. : You can’t beat soap and water for cleansing. (COBUILD)


I’m sold on computer games.

be sold on (doing) something (=think an idea or plan is very good) :  Joe’s completely sold on the concept. (LDOCE)


I fancy French food tonight.

If you fancy something, you want to have it or to do it. (mainly BRIT INFORMAL) :  What do you fancy doing, anyway? /  I just fancied a drink.  (COBUILD)




2009年01月第2週分 Lesson 7  Online Privacy (6)


S = 杉田敏      I = Susan Iwamoto


S: In our current vignette, we looked at the impact personal use of e-mail and Internet has had on employee productivity.

I: Yes. You know, despite all the initial gains and productivity, the Internet has brought on some challenges to time management as well, whether it’s dealing with the daily flood of e-mail or trying to resist the urge to take care of personal business during work time. Plus, the Internet can be a great distraction, particularly for procrastinators of the world.


S: Do you fall into that category?

I: Sure, I know I’m not alone out there. Though I do try to get on the present tasks out of the way earlier in a day, sometimes it’s tempting to check my e-mail just one more time, or look at news headlines before jumping into a project. As much as I appreciate the quick and easy access to information, I sometimes feel I need to escape to a place with no Internet access to really make some progress in my various projects.

out of the way if a particular matter, job etc is out of the way, it has been done or dealt with: I’d rather get the interview    out of the way in the morning. / As soon as the contract’s out of the way, we can start. (LDOCE)

As much as S + V  ≒ Though S + V


S: Well, many companies have restricted access to the Internet as a way of fighting back against the loss of employee productivity. Have you experienced that in companies where you’ve worked, Susan?

I: Yes, definitely. Jay Tyson mentioned that one of Great Lakes employees in Europe was caught trying to e-mail confidential information to his home computer. Now, one of my former employers had similar concerns about the potential loss of confidential product information and decided to block access to all web-based e-mail sites. Later, they cracked on access to other Internet sites as well. But I think there was more of an interest in preventing employees from wasting time on personal pursuits.

crack down to become more strict in dealing with a problem and punishing the people involved
crack down on   
The government is determined to crack down on terrorism. / The police are cracking down hard on violent crime.  (LDOCE)


S: How was that received by employees?

I: Well, there was a lot of grumbling at first. But I think people could understand the concerns of the company. However, I think they went a bit overboard in some respects.

go overboard    to do or say something that is too extreme for a particular situation: I hope politicians will not go overboard in trying to control the press. (LDOCE)


S: In what respect, for example?

I: Well, occasionally I would be blocked from sites I needed to access for work. The red tape necessary to gain permission to use the site was very annoying. It sometimes took a day or two to finally be approved to access that site. Of course, by that time, I would have already given it up and just research the information on my home computer. I think they’ve improved the process since then, and as Jay Tyson mentioned in the vignette, companies are trying to find a good compromise that protects the company but also acknowledges the fact that employees want some access to the Internet for personal use.

red tape You refer to official rules and procedures as red tape when they seem unnecessary and cause delay.: The little money that was available was tied up in bureaucratic red tape. (COBUILD)


S: Yes, and Tony Hughes mentioned that Great Lakes allows access to popular social networking sites during specific time of the day. Do you think this will be effective?

I: I think it will be effective to a certain extent, but there will always be employees in search of distractions. I used to feel really guilty about checking news sites from time to time at my former company, but now that I work primarily as a consultant, all of my personal use of the Internet happens on my own time. I can feel the effects of any loss of productivity directly. And that actually  helps me manage my time better.


S: Well, speaking of time management, many employees complain that they spend too much time out of their working day reading and replying to e-mail. Rosa Cortez mentioned that many companies are establishing zero e-mail Fridays.

I: I think this is an interesting idea, but I wonder how feasible it is. E-mail has become such a daily part of work life and I can imagine employees liking the idea in theory, but also going into withdrawal if they can’t access their e-mail. Still, it highlights the need for setting aside block of time uninterrupted by e-mail or phone calls so that you can really throw yourself into a project. For many of us, that seems like a luxury at this point.


S: Do you do this yourself?

I: Well, I do a lot of training work, so it’s natural to limit my e-mail access to breaks. However, on days when I’m working on my own, I try to only check e-mail every hour or two. The biggest change I’ve noticed over the years, though, is that e-mail has blurred the line between work time and private time. Years ago, I only had access to work e-mail at the office, so it was easy to leave work at work, but now I can read my e-mail twenty-four seven.

twenty-four seven (24-7)  <informal> if something happens twenty-four seven, it happens all the time, every day (LDOCE)


S: How do you deal with that?

I: (?) to a certain extent, I don’t mind. Sometimes it’s nice to get a quick answer to a work question, because I know that my colleagues are checking the e-mail regularly too. However, I do try to limit checking e-mail on weekends. Or when traveling, I check urgent messages. But I still sometimes feel guilty for not getting back to people promptly even when I’m on vacation. My experience is not unique in that regard, and just another example of e-mail being a blessing and a curse.

get back to somebody    to talk to someone or telephone them later in order to answer a question or give them information: I’ll find out the prices and get back to you. (LDOCE)




2009年01月第3週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (1)



Shiga’s looking for a health club and Cortez, Hughes, and Kim give him some advice.


● gym

Shiga mentions a gym, which is short for gymnasium. Usually, gymnasium or gym refers to a room that has facilities for indoor sports. But people often use it very generally, just to mean a place where you can exercise.


● trim off some extra pounds ぜい肉を落とす

trim (off) to cut away unnecessary parts from something (OALD)


● You’ve come to the right place. それならまかせてください。それには私(ども)がまさにぴったりです。

This is the phrase people often use to mean "You can rely on me," or "The answer is here," or "I have the answer," or "I can tell you what to do."


● I’m all ears too. ぜひ聞きたい。

be all ears    <informal>   to be very keen to hear what someone is going to tell you: As soon as I mentioned money, Karen was all ears.  (LDOCE)


● Let’s see. えーと,そうですね。

Almost any time you’re trying to think of what to say next, you could say, "Well, let’s see." It’s a very strong signal that you’re thinking.

let’s see also let me see <spoken> used when you are thinking about or trying to remember something:  Today’s date is – let me see, March 20th. / Now, let’s see, where did I put your application form?   (LDOCE)


● shop around あれこれ比較していいものを探す

"Shop around" is a phrasal verb that you can use even if you’re not actually going to shops, but if you’re going to buy something, it means "compare prices," "compare quality," "see what you can get" before you make a decision.

shop around (for something) to compare the quality or prices of goods or services that are offered by different shops/stores, companies, etc. so that you can choose the best; Shop around for the best deal. (OALD)


● Quality remains after the prices is forgotten.


  • The recollection of quality remains long after price is forgotten.
  • The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of cheap price is forgotten.



● bad press マスコミで報道される悪評

get/be given a bad press    to be criticized in the newspapers or on radio or television: The government’s policy on mental health care is getting an increasingly bad press. (LDOCE)


● get ripped off 不当な金額を取られる,ぼられる

rip something off   cheat someone, especially financially (NOAD)


● sign on the dotted line 署名欄に署名する

The phrase "sign on the dotted line" is often used to mean not only to sign some kind of document, but also to say you approve of something or you accept something. Another word you could use is endorse. Or you could even say "put your John Hancock on it." John Hancock was one of the founders of the U.S. and he had a very large and fancy signature on the Declaration of Independence.

John Hancock
NOUN:    Informal A person’s signature.
ETYMOLOGY:    After John Hancock (from the prominence of his signature on the Declaration of Independence). (American Heritage)

hancock 「署名する」という動詞も。


● between the lines 行間を(読む)

Kim uses the phrase "between the lines." There’s an idiom "to read between the lines," which means "understand more than is directly stated." I think she’s kind of referring to this when she talks about contracts being interpreted between the lines. It’s often used to describe a person who’s good at reading or other signals besides what’s just on the surface.


● fly-by-night 夜逃げ

Fly-by-night: in this case, fly means escape or run away. So something that runs away at night is something that you probably can’t trust very easily. It could be a company or a person. It’s often someone who owes money but doesn’t wanna have to pay.

fly-by-night [only before noun]    <informal> a fly-by-night company or businessman is one that you cannot trust because they have only been in business for a short time and are only interested in making quick profits  (LDOCE)


in the blink of an eye 一瞬にして,またたく間に

Hughes also talks about these untrustworthy fitness clubs "shutting down in the blink of an eye." That means "very rapidly" like as quickly as people can blink their eyes. This phrase has a couple of variations; you could say "in the wink of an eye," "in the bat of an eye." All of them refer to how quickly you can open and close your eyes.

・ in the bat of an eye は辞書にはないが,ネット上にはある

・ それ以外に, in the[a] twinkling (of an eye)


● pay in a lump sum 一括で支払う

lump sum an amount of money given in a single payment: When you retire you’ll get a lump sum of £80,000. (LDOCE)


● アメリカ人は「自動引き落とし」を信用せず,毎月の請求書を確認の上,小切手で支払う人が多い。

I think that’s still the most popular way to pay any kind of bills in the U.S.




2009年01月第3週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (2)



Hughes gives Shiga tips on how to identify a quality club and Cortez points out the importance of cleanliness.


● the same old story いつものこと,よくある話

Shiga uses the phrase the same old story. That usually means "again and again and again the same thing," "nothing changed." Sometimes you’ll hear people say, "The same old, same old." And I think you can use that in the same situation, but it’s slightly different. I think it’s a little more satirical or ironic, the same old, same old. And you don’t even add the word story.

the (same) old story what usually happens:  It’s the same old story of a badly managed project with inadequate funding.  (OALD)

Same old, same old used to say that a situation has not changed at all: ‘How’s it going?’  ‘Oh, same old, same old.’ (OALD)



● spic-and-span きちんとした,こざっぱりした

Spic-and-span is a phrase you’ll hear when somebody’s talking about something that is spotlessly clean. It’s beautiful, it’s like it’s brand-new and fresh.

spic-and-span [not before noun]  <informal>  a room, house etc that is spick and span is completely clean and tidy  (LDOCE)


● in tiptop condition 最良の状態で

  ・ tip-top  <informal>  excellent:  The car’s in tip-top condition. (LDOCE)


● with an eye for ~ ~に眼識があって,~に注意して

Shiga mentions that he visited health clubs with an eye for health hazards. The phrase "with an eye for" can be used literally; he was probably looking carefully for health hazards. But you can use the phrase for almost anything that you want to keep in mind or the thing you really wanna focus on during some activity.


● takeaway 持ち帰り(の)

takeaway a meal that you buy at a shop or restaurant to eat at home [= takeout American English]  : Let’s have a takeaway tonight. (LDOCE)


● germ ばい菌

Germ or germs is a word in English that has many uses. The way Cortez is using it is to mean microorganism or pathogen — something you can’t see that causes disease. It’s been used with that meaning since the late 19th century in English. A more informal or casual word is bug; sometimes people talk about catching a bug.


● dumbbell ダンベル,ばか,のろま

Cortez, when she says dumbbells, is talking about exercise equipment. Dumbbell is also slang for a person who’s maybe not as bright as many other people. Kids tend to use it to insult each other: "You dumbbell! Why did you do that?"


● You said it. そのとおり。

you said it!  <spoken>
a) used when someone says something that you agree with, although you would not have actually said it yourself because it is not polite: ‘I was always stubborn as a kid.’ ‘You said it!’
b) <especially American English> used to say that you agree with someone: ‘Let’s go home.’ ‘You said it! I’m tired.’ (LDOCE)


● staph ブドウ球菌

Hughes talks about picking up a nasty staph infection. Staph is short for staphylococcus — a group of bacteria that cause many common infection in people. Staph is spelled s-t-a-p-h in this case, although the pronunciation is the same as the word for a group of people who work together in a specific area, staff — s-t-a-f-f.


● ジムにおける衛生の問題

The group’s been talking about hygiene from the point of view of germs and diseases that you can pick up in locker rooms or gyms. But I often hear about health clubs telling members to wipe off the equipment after you use it. So there is more, I think, to hygiene and sanitation than just avoiding a disease. You could also be trying to avoid other people’s sweat and things like that. It might not make you sick, but it is pretty unpleasant.


● Hygiene tops the list トップを占める,筆頭である

top (verb) to be in the highest position on a list because you are the most successful, important, etc. :  The band topped the charts for five weeks with their first single.  (OALD)




2009年01月第3週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (3)



Shiga talks about finding good training advisors and Cortez wants to know which health club she decides on because she’s looking, too.


● Better safe than sorry 用心するにこしたことはない

"Better safe than sorry" is basically a set phrase just to remind people that they should be cautious.

・ Better late than never. まったく来ないより,遅れてきた方がいい。


● clean とその名詞 cleanliness

Shiga talks about equipment being cleaned. There’s a phrase in English: Cleanliness is next to godliness. Cleanliness might be a little bit difficult to pronounce if you’ve never heard it before, because it’s spelled c-l-e-a-n-, the same as clean, but it’s pronounced /klen/: cleanliness.

・ Cleanliness is next to godliness. 清潔は敬神に次ぐ美徳

Cleanliness can be defined as ‘diligence in keeping clean in person and dress’; and ‘next to’ means ‘second only to’. Francis Bacon wrote in his Advancement of Learning: ‘Cleanliness of the body was ever deemed to proceed from a due reverence to God.’ The axiom certainly dates back to very ancient times. (English Proverbs Explained : R. Ridout & C. Witting)


● be short on ~ ~が不足している

be short on something <informal> lacking or not having enough of a particular quality : He was a big strapping guy but short on brains.  (OALD)


● be wait-listed 順番を待たされる

wait-list (verb)  to put somebody’s name on a waiting list : He’s been wait-listed for a football scholarship to Stanford.  (OALD)


● pour into ~ ~に押し寄せる

Kim uses the phrasal verb pouring into to talk about the great amount of people who are going to the good health and fitness centers. Pour into is a phrase you can use for almost anything that flows into something in large numbers. It’s very similar to pouring water but it doesn’t have to be a liquid.


・ Matsushita さんは,the great amount of people と,可算名詞で amount of を使っています。大学入試的には☓にされてしまいますが,時々使われるようです。


● keep up a good head of steam 気力の充実を維持する

"To keep up a good head of steam" is an idiom that means "keep your power and energy in good supply." It comes from the old days of steam engines, when they had to build up enough pressure, (that’s a head of steam) to make the locomotive start moving, (that’s a lot of heavy steel) to move with steam. By the way, in Japan they are often called SL (steam locomotive). I think English speakers won’t know what you are talking about if you only say SL.

head of water/steam     pressure that is made when water or steam is kept in an enclosed space (LDOCE)  head 圧力

get/build up a head of steam    to become very active after starting something slowly (LDOCE)


● bona fide 正真正銘の,本物の

Bona fide is a phrase that comes from Latin originally. It’s used in English to mean authentic or genuine or real. And because it comes from a foreign language, it tends to have various pronunciations: /bounə faid/, which is the way I usually say it, but you can also say /bɑnə faid/ or even /bɑnə faidi/.

Used in the plural, it means credentials or reputation. And then I usually hear it pronounced /bɑnə faidiːz/, although sometimes people will say /bounə faidz/.

bona fide real, true, and not intended to deceive anyone: Only bona fide members are allowed to use the club pool. (LDOCE)


● ward off 追い払う,寄せ付けない

If you ward something off, you avert it or turn it away or repel it. The word ward in all its various meanings in English is almost always somehow related to the idea of protection.

ward ~ off to protect or defend yourself against danger, illness, attack, etc. : to ward off criticism / She put up her hands to ward him off.   (OALD)


● sales pitches 売り込み(口上),セールストーク

pitch  <informal>   the things someone says to persuade people to buy something, do something, or accept an idea: an aggressive salesman with a fast-talking sales pitch   (LDOCE)


● best bet 最も確実な方策

your best bet    <spoken>    used when advising someone what to do: Your best bet is to put an advert in the local newspaper. / The train might be a better bet.   (LDOCE)


● flex one’s biceps 力こぶを作る

Cortez talks about a trainer who "flexes his biceps." Flex is the word that’s often used together with muscles to mean "move your muscles", "use your muscles". Biceps are the main muscle in the upper half of your arm. So flexing your biceps is showing off your muscles. But you can also use the phrase "flex one’s muscles" as an idiom. And in that case, it means showing your power or your strength or your influence.

flex your muscles   to show somebody how powerful you are, especially as a warning or threat


● blow a whistle ホイッスルを吹く,内部告発する

blow the whistle on somebody  <informal>  to tell someone in authority about something wrong that someone is doing: He blew the whistle on his colleagues. (LDOCE)




2009年01月第4週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (4)



The group talks about the advantages of exercise and the importance of not overdoing it.


● act your age 年相応に振る舞う(主に若者ぶる人に)

If you tell someone to act their age, it sounds like you could use it in any situation, if they’re acting too young or too old. But usually in English, this phrase is used to tell people who are being childish or acting too young to act as old as they are.

Another phrase people use sometimes with pretty much the same meaning is "Grow up."

act [be] your age to behave in a way that is suitable for somebody of your age and not as though you were much younger (OALD)

・ act young 若ぶる

・ "Grow up." 子どもみたいなまねはよせ!


● strain muscles and bones 筋肉と骨にムリをさせる

・ strain   to injure yourself or part of your body by making it work too hard


● be nowhere near ~ ~にはほど遠い

nowhere near ~   far from ~; not at all ~: The job doesn’t pay anywhere near enough for me. (OALD)


● cardiac disease 心臓病

You’ll often hear people talking about heart disease rather than cardiac disease. They’re the same thing. Cardiac is an adjective used to mean heart, usually in relation to health and fitness.


● pushup 腕立て伏せ

Pushup is often used as sort of the all of general kind of exercise that’s supposed to be good for you. All kinds of people do pushups for all kinds of reasons. And people have been doing pushups for a long, long time, many years. I think they fairly recently came back in style because they are very good for training, all kinds of muscles in your chest and your back and your arms.

・ sit-up 腹筋運動

And all those sit-ups are now pretty much out of fashion, because it’s easy to hurt your back by doing old-fashioned sit-ups. Now people tend to do things called crunches.

・ crunches 脚を曲げたまま上体を起こす腹筋運動


● backbends 後屈

Backbends also, I think, are not such a common exercise these days. I can’t remember really hearing much about backbends since I was a kid. Kids tried to do ‘em a lot.


● payback 見返り

payback the advantage or reward that somebody receives for something they have done; the act of paying something back :  His victory was seen as payback for all the hard work he’d put in during training. / It’s payback time! (=a person will have to suffer for what they have done.)


● heavy

Kim talks about "Hughes not being too heavy." She means he’s not fat. He doesn’t have too much extra weight. Heavy in slang can mean cool or OK or great. On the other hand, if you describe someone as heavyset, it usually means they have heavier bones and heavier, larger muscles than maybe the average person. And one more: a heavy is a kind of a thug or the guys in a gang who use their physical power to persuade people to do what they want.

heavy 悪役,ならず者

heavyset having a broad heavy body

heavy weight  業界で力がある・知識がある


● bottom line 重要な点,肝心なこと

the bottom line    used to tell someone what the most important part of a situation is, or what the most important thing to consider is: In radio you have to keep the listener listening. That’s the bottom line. (LDOCE)


● cutoff (効力などが切れる)期限[段階]

cutoff a point or limit when you stop something: The government announced a cut-off in overseas aid. / Is there a cut-off point between childhood and adulthood?  (OALD)


● dawn and dusk 早朝と夕暮れ


● That seems to do for her workout.

If you say "That’ll do," you mean it’s enough, it’s fine; that takes care of everything; it’s satisfactory.

do used to say that something will be enough or be acceptable:
We don’t have a lot of wine for the party, but it should just about do. / I can’t find my black shoes so these will have to do. / A few sandwiches will do me for lunch. / It won’t do (=it is not acceptable) to say that the situation couldn’t have been avoided. (LDOCE)




2009年01月第4週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (5)


== Key Phrases to Remember ==

● apply for ~ ~に申し込む,~を申請する

You can also apply to someone or something for some purpose, so seniors in high school are always talking to each other about "Where did you apply?" "Which school did you apply to for college?"

A little more formal way to say it is that you applied to the state university for a matriculation.


● sign on the dotted line (文書の)点線の上に署名する,署名欄に署名する

実践ビジネス英語 2009.01.21


● in the blink of an eye 瞬く間に,あっという間に

  → 実践ビジネス英語 2009.01.21


● in the midst of ~ ~のさなかに,真っ只中に


● in tiptop condition 最良の状態で

Tiptop has many synonyms. You could say "excellent" or "the highest," "the best," "A-1" or even" topnotch."

   → 実践ビジネス英語 2009.01.22


● to the list トップを占める,筆頭である

  → 実践ビジネス英語 2009.01.22



==  あんな時,こんな時 == 

 アドバイスを求める表現 I need some advice.

● I can use some advice from a lawyer. 「弁護士からのアドバイスを必要としている」


● vase 高額な花瓶は/vɑːz/と発音。

Although I think a lot of  people in the U.S. would find that a little bit over the top.

over the top done to an exaggerated degree and with too much effort: His performance is completely over the top. / an over-the-top reaction    (OALD)


● get out of the bind 窮状から脱する

bind   an annoying situation that is often difficult to avoid



● What would you do?

This one is probably usually pronounced with the focus on the word do, because it probably follows up the speaker saying what the problem is and then turning the focus onto the listener.




2009年01月第4週分 Lesson 8  Keeping Fit (6)


S = 杉田敏      I = Susan Iwamoto


S: Recently  we’ve been talking about fitness clubs and the challenges of making time for exercise during the week.

I: Yes, and this is definitely an important topic and something I struggle with quite a lot. I’m definitely an on-again, off-again exerciser. I like to exercise. But after a long day of work, sometimes all I want to do is settle in a couch with a good book. How about you Sugita-san? Are you an avid exerciser?

on-again, off-again 断続的な existing briefly and in an intermittent unpredictable way (11th Collegiate)


S: Well, I wouldn’t call myself an avid exerciser, but I try to exercise every morning at a downtown fitness club before I get to work. Most of the time I ride a stationary bike for half an hour to an hour. It’s so refreshing at the start of the day.

I: Oh, I know what you mean. I belong to a gym, too, but I’m going in spurts; sometimes I’m a regular(?) and sometimes I feel I’m just pouring money down the hole.


S: Shiga Hiroshi mentioned that the challenges of finding a good fitness club, and Tony Hughes and Rosa Cortez gave him some good advice about shopping around for quality facilities with solid contracts. What’s important for you in a fitness club, Susan?

I: Well, everyone has their own priorities, but for me the location and hours of operation are crucial. My current gym is about seven-minute walk from my apartment, and frankly, I have a hard enough time getting myself there. If I had to travel any further, I probably wouldn’t go there at all. I like to work out at night and I love the fact that the gym is open until midnight. I sometimes wish it would be open earlier in the morning, though, so that I could squeeze in a workout before heading to the office. I’ve noticed that many more gyms in the U.S. than Japan just do that. There seems to be many more 24-hour gyms in the U.S., though I can’t imagine there are many people on treadmill at 3 A.M.

squeeze in to give time to somebody/something, although you are very busy: If you come this afternoon the doctor will try to squeeze you in.  (OALD)


S: Hiroshi mentioned that the economic downturn is having an effect on gym memberships. Do you find that to be the case?

I: Yes, definitely. People are looking for ways to trim the budget as well as their waistline, and are looking for inexpensive alternatives to fitness clubs. Some employers offer gym memberships as part of their benefits package, but many people have to pay out of their own pocket for the gym. I have quite a few friends and relatives in the States who’ve quit their gyms in favor of weekend hikes, biking to work or going for morning jogs. And that includes people who are eligible for gym discount through work. Even with a discount, it’s still an expense that can easily be cut.


S: Have you had gym membership through your employers in the past?

I: Well, one of my former employers was a large corporation and we had a company gym on the premises. It was free for all employees to use and it had excellent facilities. The same employer also offers discount tickets for private business clubs for employees who prefer to work out in their neighborhood.


S: Many cities and towns in Japan also have public gyms that are very inexpensive.

I: Yes, and I think it’s wonderful. It’s a nice alternative for people who would like to participate in aerobics classes or go swimming but who don’t want to shell out over 10,000 yen a month on the gym membership. One of my friends in Tokyo lives near a wonderful public gym with facilities that are just as nice as private fitness clubs nearby, but at a fraction of the cost.

shell out If you shell out for something, you spend a lot of money on it. (INFORMAL) : You won’t have to shell out a fortune for it. /  an insurance premium which saves you from having to shell out for repairs   (COBUILD)


S: Sue Kim mentioned the dangers of our sedentary life style and this is of particular importance as people get older.

I: Yes, sad but(?) true. For many people, myself included, once they hit their thirties, they realize it takes a lot more effort to maintain a healthy weight. Sitting around all day in front of a computer certainly doesn’t help. Exercising at least three times per week is recommended by most experts, as is  incorporating exercise in a subtle way during the day: now for example, taking the stairs instead of escalators or elevators, and walking instead of driving.

hit to reach a particular level or number: Sales have hit the    1 million mark. /  hit a peak / an all-time high etc / Earnings hit a peak in the early 1980s. / hit rock-bottom (an all-time low) etc  / Oil prices have hit rock-bottom.  (LDOCE)


S: This is something that has been getting a lot of attention in Japan, too, particularly with all of the recent focus on metabolic syndrome.

I: True. I’ve noticed a huge increase in the number of diet products available in Japan in the last ten years or so. When I moved to Japan after graduating from college, it was difficult to find things like low-fat milk or sugar-free yogurt. But now there are shelves full of products geared towards dieters. And diet crazes seem to be becoming commonplace here too. Just a few months ago, bananas were selling out at supermarkets all over Japan because of some celebrity diets. I wonder what’s next.

geared towards [to] ~ / geared to V designed or organized to achieve a particular purpose, or to be suitable for a particular group of people : The programme is geared to preparing students for the world of work. / The resort is geared towards children. (OALD)