Chapter V – Part 13

$ Who did you coach today?

$ Adam, among others.

$ What did Adam teach you about you?

$ Adam reminded me how deep the resemblance to my parents is rooted in me.

$ One half of you is your mom, one half of you is your dad.

$ Evidently. The point is, in other words, that during the meeting a part of my head was wondering: ‘how am I working out’? ‘What is the impression that I’m making’? Or I occasionally caught myself wishing the class over already. Or the question of how I had dressed.

$ What question about how you dressed?

$ My parents saved everything, they practically didn’t throw clothes away, not even white shirts with yellow underarm stains although they could easily afford new, expensive clothing. I am very wealthy myself and yet I save everything.

$ Whatever for?

$ Because it’s very time-consuming to look for a design, cloth, to visit the seamstress a couple of times, to dry clean. So, I put on jeans, a shirt and a jumper and that’s it.

$ What seems to be the matter then?

$ The way I dress is my non-verbal communication with the world. I leave my room and I say: it’s me. That is: who? I can see a discrepancy between what I am and what I show to the world. Do you remember, Gandhi, when he changed his strategy, he changed his clothes: a suit in South Africa, a tunic when he was back in India, and a piece of home-spun wool when he decided to restore domestic handicraft.

$ What are you going to do about it?

$ I’ll practice one step at a time. When I start wondering how I come out I’ll remind myself that it’s my opinion that matters.

$ And mine!

$ Hahahaha! When I start to want it to be after class I’ll practice patience and industry. And I’ll draw language coaches. A drawing will reveal to me what I want to look like.

$ Casual smart, that’s what I see.

$ Better smart than casual. I was really shocked during Adam’s class today. You know, last week I dreamed of my mom. I visited her and she said: ‘I’ll buy some coffee’. I said: ‘No, mom, I’ll send you some really good coffee from my city’. My mom agrees. She says she’s going home and asks me if I keep her company. It was too far to walk so we took the tram. And it wasn’t a regular tram. It was a sophisticated rapid-transit vehicle. We got on. We were chatting and suddenly a woman with a suitcase approached us and said: ‘your tickets, please’. And I paid a fine because I had none.

Chapter V – Part 12

$ Imagine that there are three people in this room and we are asked the question: what can you see outside the window?

$ I can see an impressive Korean fir. Outstanding piece! It must be over 50 years old.

$ I’d say: I can see row houses with flat roofs. Thank God, I live in a detached house with a sloping roof.

And a weather man would say: I can see dense and think clouds, there’ll be a heavy rain.

Each of us spoke about themselves even though we began with a view from our window. The same view.

$ I got lost.

$ Listen to this. Some time ago a client complained he was very unhappy with his partner. “Too little practice, too much work”, he said. In his opinion, she worked too much on herself in theory and didn’t apply that in real life. In fact, she escaped from life into personal growth. I told him: you’re talking about yourself. He said: no, not at all! This reflection idea doesn’t make sense because I don’t escape into personal growth, she does. Next weekend we had an appointment for a photo session. He is a photographer, by the way. And what did he do? He texted me: I won’t be able to show up because my family constellation session turned out to be much longer than expected.

From my observation, I criticize others for what I don’t accept in myself or my own bad habits or weaknesses.

$ You’re talking nonsense. I criticize Anthony for his lack of education. Are you insinuating that I am not well educated?

$ I can criticize a part of a bigger whole, in that case it is that whole that I can’t stand.

$ You are talking like Pythia today.

$ I appreciate your compliment. Another client of mine was not convinced of this approach either and she gave the following example: she went on holiday in Greece with a friend. They stayed in a 3-star-hotel at the seaside. My client says: my friend is so silly. She took towels from home because she has already been to that hotel and in her opinion, the towels in the hotel are disgusting. Since it didn’t even come to my mind to take towels from home, in spite of her warning, please explain to me: how do I criticize myself when I say that my friend is silly?

Do you know the answer?

$ No, I don’t. What is the answer?

$ In the time space you already know.

$ Yes, in the 5th or 8th dimension I do. But I am very much attached to the linear time.

$ Even in the linear time you know the answer. However, you may not reveal it in the context of this very question. I can tell you what my associations were. The friend takes towels from home because the quality of the hotel towels is an affront to her dignity. If I am somehow impressed by that piece of information and I personally have nothing against hotel towels, I may gracefully accept their quality, nevertheless, apart from that, it is a challenge to satisfy myself in many things.

And do you know what my client did? She blushed, coughed a little and changed the subject.

$ The body doesn’t lie. Anyway, like your client, in linear time I don’t know how I criticized myself while talking about ill-educated Anthony.

$ Like my client, you know even in linear time.

$ What do I know then?

$ Let’s look for it together. I will give you one option and you’ll tell me whether it resonates with you or not.

$ Go ahead!

$ Anthony earns billions and is illiterate so he doesn’t deserve such high salary.

$ Of course he doesn’t!

$ So I can ask myself: what don’t I deserve? To get someone to help me with my chores? To have a housekeeper? To work somewhere else and earn a lot?

Consequently, as long as I don’t tackle my English and master it I can deceive myself saying that my problems have their source in my tangible ignorance and I don’t need to contact a conviction deep in my heart: I don’t deserve a better life.

It is merely an example. You are the expert in the matters of your life, so only you know what stew is boiling over under the lid. By the way, you lowered your head, crossed your legs and arms.

And sighed.

Did I tell you the history of language coaching?

$ Remind me of that.

$ Before I started language coaching, I specialized in my method called “simultaneous teaching” and my formula in a nutshell said: one course – one teacher – two foreign languages.

My target is, among others, people who treasure their time, who want to use and improve their skills in one language while learning another, who are interested in quickly mastering two foreign languages.

Simultaneous teaching is so efficient because thanks to an additional foreign language in the class we are given another reference point, consequently we get more incentives to associate, compare similarities and differences etc.

Since there were many people interested in learning only one language, we also offered mono-lingual classes, one-to-one or in groups up to four.

In order to ensure our students optimal progress in their learning process, we specify at the first meeting at what level we start, what our target level is, when we want to achieve our goal, and how much time students can devote to self-directed education. Next step is to match students with a program (elementary, beginner, intermediate, advanced, business language), precise number and length of classes accordingly.

Our mission statement says: We make it easier for people to communicate. We want as many people as possible to speak foreign languages. We revolutionize the process of learning foreign languages so that it contributes to a comprehensive development of the students’ personality and character. We combine business with the promotion of learning foreign languages.

I discovered the method of simultaneous language teaching while attending University, when French and English students exchanged lessons with each other. Undoubtedly, Confucius’ saying: Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life was groundbreaking in my carrier. Thus, I started running my business and after having done market research I came to the conclusion that there was a niche in the market of Language Centers: students who are aware that merely speaking English is not enough. These students wish to not only improve their English, but also learn another foreign language, and who wish to accomplish both without the necessity of attending two classes.

For over ten years I have become more and more convinced that success is inside us and does not depend on outside factors, and being successful is mostly based on clarifying the following questions: Am I aware of the fact that nothing is permanent except change? Am I lucky? Do I realize that if I want something, I search for a way and if I do not want it, I search for an excuse? What are my beliefs? Do I remember that it is not what I have but what I do with what I have? Am I able to be here and now? Do I understand that I am 100% responsible for my life and that everything in my environment reflects my self? Do I know that reality is the way I perceive it? Am I detached from the results? Am I disciplined and well organized? What am I going to be like in 20 years? Do I distinguish important tasks from urgent ones? Am I ready to experience tension in relationships with people whose material condition is worse than mine? What is my inner voice/intuition saying? What do I feel? Am I conscious of my feelings? Do I remember that I choose how I am? I have to or want to? I should or can /decide /choose? I should not or do not want to? I will try or will do it? I cannot or will not do it? I have problems or challenges and opportunities? I make mistakes or learn lessons? I fail or receive essential feedback?

Eventually, I realized that nothing else matters so much at the beginning of the learning process as clarifying these question and so I invented Language Coaching.

Chapter V – Part 11

You realize of course that if you don’t fix your time management (assuming that this is the source of your linguistic challenges), it won’t work, even if I bring the most interesting text books or apply the most user-friendly methods.

$ Why this digression about time management?

$ Because “I have no time” sounds innocent. It may even be considered a compliment: I am so busy, so needed, there is such a demand for me. Nowadays, who dares say: “I have time”?

$ A Buddhist monk. A jobless person.

$ That’s the point. So having no time can be an attractive lid. What is there really in the pot? Boiling over?

$ I have no clue.

$ An answer to such a question can show up unexpectedly and in the most misappropriate moment, e.g. in a new stressful situation or when you are physically exhausted. It is easy to recognize that this is the answer because your body reflects it: suddenly you’re cold, about to faint, you feel like crying (in a movie, for instance), urgent call of nature. Or you compulsively eat sweets, drink alcohol, bite your nails, scratch a scab. It can keep on coming back to you and you need to rationalize or deny it, because nothing hurts like the truth, so it’s better to reject it. Who knows what would happen if I admitted it. As long as I don’t admit it, I am ok.

$ I still don’t know what my answer could be.

$ No wonder. We’re sitting here, in predictable circumstances, talking in a nice atmosphere, and you need surprise, shock, thrill to have such an epiphany.

$ It doesn’t appeal to me.

$ One day you told me about your primary school colleague. He didn’t take his A-level exams, didn’t graduate obviously. You met after many, many years.

$ Anthony?

$ The one who together with his father has been producing aerials and when they started export to the East, they became billionaires.

$ Anthony.

$ I remember exactly what you said about the way he complained about his car.

$ Yes, that cars are more and more expensive and he has to have a newest Mercedes E class every other year because if he visited his clients driving anything else, they would think his business is not doing very well. And?

$ Take some deep breaths, you can close your eyes and tell me what came to your mind.


$ How are you?

$ I’m fine.

$ Look at your palms.

$ What’s wrong with them?

$ You clenched your fists and your jaws worked. Close your eyes very tightly, open them and your mouth at the same time. Open your mouth as wide as if you wanted to shout your head off. Two times more. Can you feel how tense your jaws were?

$ What is this all about?

$ Look, the body doesn’t lie. Sometimes it radiates with beauty and joy, sometimes it gets sick. When I asked you to think about Anthony, you clenched your fists and jaws. What came to your mind when you were sitting and thinking about him? Your body has already spoken, let your mind speak now.

$ I was pissed at him and at his fucking problems. I would be grateful for such fucking problems, that I have to fucking buy a new fatten Mercedes every other year. I got so mad that I could have strangled her with my bare hands Who the fuck is he? Some dust that knows nothing, employs a finance specialist because he can’t count from 1 to 3 and a lawyer because he can’t put down a subordinate clause.

$ You are so outraged.

$ No, I just find it doesn’t make sense: such a zero is a billionaire and me with my PhD, two master’s degrees, I live on a shoestring.

$ Do you think that is the stew boiling over under the lid of shortcomings in time management?

$ How’s that?

$ There is one approach that says: everything I come across in my life is my reflection: people, situations, things.

$ Again, I don’t get it.

Chapter V – Part 10

$ My greengrocer told me that her 17-year-old son had huge problems with his back. The doctors recommended neuromassages, for which you cue for months. Of course, you can have a neuromassage in a private place, that is what my greengrocer couldn’t afford. Her son went to a neuromasseur who is an acquaintance of mine and told her about his back and the family’s finance. It just so happened that her cleaning lady gave her notice the week before so they had a deal: he did the cleaning once a week for 3-5 hours and his wages was a massage.

$ I don’t know anybody like this.

$ Fair enough. Again, it’s about changing perspective. My little story is like a grain that I sowed today in the garden of your imagination. If you decide to water it, there will be fruit. If not, it is all right, too.

Covey says: eventually don’t bother about the quadrant 4 and deal with it now and then, and delegate the quadrant 3 as much as possible.

What would you have in the quadrant 1 then?

$ Important and urgent. Vaccinating the cat, when the deadline comes. Delivering my article, because the publisher sets deadlines, too. My girls’ birthdays.

$ Right. According to Covey, nobody can replace us in the quadrant 1. What’s more, it will always claim its rights. And the quadrant 2 stands for sharpening the saw. What have you got there?

$ There should be sports: in my age you have to start taking care of your health. It would be good if English were there, too. My daughter makes me so angry: we keep telling her that if she learns a foreign language every day for 15 minutes, she’ll be proficient in two languages after she graduates. I don’t want her to copy my mistakes. She can choose whatever school she likes, wherever she likes, but she must master foreign languages.

$ Children are a phenomenon: they don’t do what we tell them to do; they do what we do ourselves.

$ You’re awful! She has nothing else to do but to learn. She doesn’t work, she doesn’t help at home.

$ And she can see that one can speak no foreign languages and survive somehow. By the way, you are talking about your daughter in spite of the fact that she is adult. And it’s not a parents-teachers-conference. I find her under a huge pressure for results. She is never sure of what she knows and she calls classes off very often on some pretext or other when she doesn’t feel prepared well enough. She had been missing classes for half a year. Did you know that?

$ She has the greatest respect for you, so probably she was ashamed.

$ Her official version is: because she wants to review the whole grammar and learn vocabulary first. And the saddest thing to me is that she thinks I am joking when I ask: before you chat with your friend, do you also review the whole grammar of your mother tongue? Her reaction is similar when I remind her of what Vera F. Birkenbihl , a guru with a brain-friendly approach to learning foreign languages says about learning vocabulary.

$ What does she say?

$That for the human brain this activity is totally artificial. The brain has the ability of mastering languages above all to communicate, i.e. it remembers particular structures in particular contexts. E.g.: a mom is saying to her baby: look, under the ilex a snake is crawling. And the child is learning that this plant is called ilex, that the movement in the shape of an “S” is crawling and that this long colorful creature is a snake. What does an average school do? List of plants – test on Monday. List of reptiles – test next week. Words designating movement (chapter 1 to 7) – test tomorrow.

Your daughter feels comfortable in the world of grammar and vocabulary because that’s what she has been practicing all her life. However, it doesn’t imply learning either one. You said, she had been ashamed. Sounds familiar, right? How many courses did you give up because at the beginning you prepared ambitiously for every class, than you played truant once or twice, next you didn’t go because you were ashamed, finally it was too late to catch up with your group?

$ Every time. And I hoped language coaching would solve the problem: individual lessons, no way to run, no way to hide, a tailor-made program.

$ A solution is inside, not outside.

Chapter V – Part 9

$ I feel delighted! It turns out you’ll start learning English by purchasing a new car.

$ Or by cutting down all fruit trees in our garden and planting yews. I love yews so much, they are splendid. Moreover, you’ve got so much unrewarding work with fruit trees: vaccinating, plucking, processing, raking leaves, trimming, fertilizing. If I cut the trees down, my girls would fucking kill me.

$ So, potentially jams are in the quadrant 3: not important / urgent.

$ If I start thinking this way, I can say: cleaning the windows is not important, even not urgent. Nobody has died of dirty windows yet.

$ In fact, why do we clean the windows? In order to implement neatness and tidiness in our environment? And how do I know when untidiness and disorder start? When my hands are dirty after having opened or closed the window?

$ Hahahaha! I have never looked at this from this angle. It sounds weird but I clean the windows when my wife tells me to.

$ Because you want to have your peace and quiet at home?

$ And to avoid a very significant look of my mother-in-law. And to avoid having to explain anything to guests.

$ Do you run an open home?

$ Rather not. Mainly my mother-in-law drops in.

$ Uninvited?

$ Look, she’s family. She’s got the key to our house. My wife is very much attached to her mother: she’s an only child, her mother brought her up on her own. This connection is incomprehensible to me.

$ How much time does it take  to clean all the windows?

$ 17 windows multiplied by about 40 minutes plus cleaning window sills, heaters, taking the curtains down, washing them, hanging them up, washing the places where I have spilled… Good 16 hours, which is a couple of hours a day for a week.

$ 3 times a year.

$ 4-5 times a year.

$ Have you ever counted how much time it takes to do the housekeeping, gardening and taking care of your cars?

$ No, never.

$ Assuming 1 hour a day on average…

$ At least.

$ … it gives 365 hours a year. If a 9 to 5 employee works 8 hours a day, 365 hours are his/her 46 working days. Since we work about 21 days a month…

$ It means, I give for free over 2 months of my life every year, sacrificing myself for Sisyphean labor that is unacknowledged by my family. That’s appalling!

$ What comes to your mind when you think to yourself: what can I do about it?

$ I am not able to change that. I like tidiness. That’s it.

$ That’s a one-year-long perspective we are talking about because one year is what you need to make your English fly high. One year without jams. One year with dirty windows.

$ It’s impossible. Our house would become a pigsty and after a year I would be the one to tidy it up.

$ Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

$ Besides, there are no guarantees that one year is enough.

$ What you say is what you get. There are no guarantees, there has never been any, there won’t be any because it is your life and not a pre-written screenplay. First of all, what I would like you to do is to have a look at your duties from a different point of view. It’s not about a prescribed medication. It’s about finding a solution. Finding it your way. Can you imagine somebody else than you cleaning the windows in your house? You would gain 80 hours that you could spend in your office, learning English.

$ I can’t afford that.

Chapter V – Part 8

$ Quadrant 1: jams.

$ Are jams really important? What will happen if you don’t cook jams for one or two years?

$ I don’t like the industrial jams. They taste of nothing. I must have homemade jams.

$ You were on a diet some time ago, weren’t you? Is it a jam diet?

$ No, of course not. I hardly ever eat jams, but I cook them for my girls. We’ve got fruit trees, so every year we collect dozens of pounds of fruit, we eat some, we freeze some, but most is transformed into jams.

$ So the point is not to EAT jams.

$ No, it isn’t.

$ Can your wife and your daughter cook jams themselves, since practically only they eat them?

$ Forget it. We spoiled our daughter rotten: she won’t even clear the dustbin and my wife is ill.

$ I’m sorry to hear that. I didn’t know. I saw her a couple of days ago when she was leaving her office and she asked me about dance workshops.

$ Yes, because she is not regularly ill. She works, looks healthy etc. But she is so weak that sometimes she stands and all of the sudden she falls down. Consequently, I am in charge of all the house chores.

$ That is very interesting: with so many professional commitments and so much housework you insist on cooking jams. You know what I mean: when I asked you about important / urgent things, jams turned out to be number 1. I’ll be pleased to know more about it.

$ All my fucking life fucking broads have been telling me what I am supposed to do. First, my mother, because she had to be strong. My father drank, but he wasn’t an alcoholic: he used to drink only at home.

$ He got drunk at home and he wasn’t an alcoholic.

$ Well, sometimes, very rarely, he came drunk from work or from drinking with colleagues. But he never ever sat on benches in parks with real drinkers.

There were three of us and our mother had to bring us up and to earn money to meet our needs. We had to obey her; otherwise, she wouldn’t have got by with all this. If we didn’t, there was spanking. And I approve of this. Children must be brought up in discipline if they are to become someone.

$ Your mom must be very proud of all her children’s achievements.

$ My brother has been drinking all his life, he is very ill, he is younger than me and already retired, though. He lives with our mom. And my sister… If I went to a party with her and wanted to keep her company as far as the glasses are concerned, I would find myself stiff lying under the table very soon and she would party till dawn.

$ Are you a shining beacon in your family?

$ How so?! If I could speak English I would work in a prestigious college for a long time and earn 10 times as much as I do now for doing the same job.

$ We are coming back to one of our first conversations: I promise you: if you do, what I encourage you to doing, in one year you’ll be able to write down in your CV:

Languages: English – pre-intermediate or intermediate

you’ll go to an interview and you’ll make as good impression as if it were happening in your mother tongue.

$ I have no time for this now.

$ In this way we are coming back to the jams. For you, they are important and urgent. What would change in your life, if they were not important and urgent? They are going to be urgent at this time every year because fruit doesn’t adapt to our schedules.

$ Actually, they are completely unimportant to me. I don’t give a shit! I cook jams, because I can’t fucking listen: Adam, when are you going to cook jams, because fruit is so ripe that they’re starting to decay on the trees? Decay? So why don’t you fucking pluck them yourself? These broads have made me to a fucking servant: Adam, the windows are dirty again. Adam, neighbors’ floor is so beautiful, you must sand ours. Adam, the cat has a diarrhea and is throwing up, take her to the vet. Adam, change my winter tires. Adam, pick our daughter up from the cinema. Fuck them! Everything I earn is spent on our home and their needs. Fuck it! When there are sales in a couple of months, I’ll buy a new Mondeo. Only for me!

Chapter V – Part 7

$ So, “figure out” is like think carefully about something.

$ Yes, until you find the answer.

$ And “the story of my life…” means I haven’t got much to say.

$ Yes, I need a little time to tell you the story of my life.

$ Interesting. Is there a step 5?

$ Yes, there is. You switch off the subtitles and the dubbing, you sit comfortably on your sofa, you enjoy watching the film as if you were a native speaker because you understand every single word, every single expression and every single joke. Paradise!

$ It seems boring to me to watch the same film five times in a row.

$ Firstly, you don’t need to watch it five times in a row. You can have your own collection of film teachers versus teaching films so that you don’t repeat one film more than once a month or so. Secondly, we come back to our condition: you like that film.

I’ve observed that after having watched a film about six times, I know it by heart. Thanks to the picture, it comes without learning by heart. As in life. With one difference: you live somebody else’s life for two hours.

Something else. Today I want to discuss with you the issue of time, and I mean what they call: time management. Then I will leave you with this and with the idea of working on films until you realize that you not only want to come back to English but also that you have come back to learning English and you’ve got questions to ask me. It doesn’t matter if it takes you weeks, months or years.

$ You’re so cruel to me.

$ Am I? I thought I would save your time. If you don’t state that English is one of your priorities, our meetings don’t make sense and my work is pure frustration.

$ That’s why I’m saying you’re so cruel to me: you force me to realize and to admit that I am the only person responsible for my English.

$ And I’m keeping my hands off!

$ Hahahahaha!

$ I recommended to you a book by S.R. Covey “7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. What I owe him is the Time Management Matrix, i.e. a division of all activities into four quadrants:

  1. Important / urgent
  2. Important / not urgent
  3. Not important / urgent
  4. Not important / not urgent.

Can you give me three examples from your life in every group?

Chapter V – Part 6

$ I was sitting…

$ Excuse me, Adam. Look how nice it is to learn grammar from a film. “I was sitting” for a longer time and than some short actions: “she walked in”, “I turned to Arthur”.

$ I don’t remember tenses at all.

$ This is all right, too. Or even better because theory doesn’t disturb your pleasure of using a foreign language.

$ Come on. Wait a sec. If I don’t know the linguistic theory, I don’t know how to use the language, either.

$ You already know some theory and believe me: this is a big portion. If you know less than a lot, you rely on your inborn ingenuity, because you realize that your knowledge can disappoint you. Listen to this: I was in Cyprus and one day me and other three girls went to lunch. One of us – a widow – talked about her husband. I wanted to ask about the length of her married life and I started to hesitate over the tense. Probably Past Perfect since her husband passed away. There was a British among us and she was faster: “How long were you married?” She asked my question because I had been deliberating over tenses. Till today I am of the opinion that there was still room for improvement in her question. So what? Paraphrasing Marshall B. Rosenberg and Katie Byron: ‘either I can be happy or right’. Anyway, I suggest underestimating grammar.

$ Hahahaha! Kissing goodbye – I like this expression. I’ll put it down.

$ Great.

$ What does it mean: “clears throat”?

$ And what is Sally doing? Kmmm, kmmm.

$ O! I see!

$ To some extend, a film is a better tool to learn languages than books, CDs etc. because it gives you moving pictures. One picture tells you more than 1,000 words.

$ The first shift.

$ Think of the shift key of your computer. What does it do?

$ For example, if I want to change from small letters to capital letters.

$ That’s what you say: change.

$ honks – it’s easy. And figure out?

$ Underline this, please. Or make a separate list of words and expressions whose meaning you don’t deduce from the context.

$ Visor, grapes, roll down the window – I like learning like this.

$ I’m happy to hear that.

$ And this one: The story of my life isn’t even going to get us out of Chicago. I understand every word and I don’t understand the whole thing.

$ Add this to “figure out”, please. Ok. We can stop here so that I am able to show you the next steps. You can either continue step 3 till the end of the movie or you can have a break whenever you feel like it. Step 4: watch the film again, this time with subtitles in your mother tongue and you regard them as your dictionary; i.e. you look for the answers to the questions you asked yourself in step 3. Ready?

$ Ok.

Chapter V – Part 5

(On the road once more)

Harry: You realize of course that we can never be friends.

Sally: Why not?

Harry: What I’m saying is… and this is not a come-on in any way, shape or form, is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.

Sally: That’s not true, I have a number of men friends and there’s is no sex involved.

Harry: No you don’t.

Sally: Yes I do.

Harry: No you don’t.

Sally: Yes I do.

Harry: You only think you do.

Sally: You’re saying I’m having sex with these men without my knowledge?

Harry: No, what I’m saying is they all want to have sex with you.

Sally: They do not.

Harry: Do too.

Sally: They do not.

Harry: Do too.

Sally: How do you know?

Harry: Because no man can be friends with a woman he finds attractive, he always wants to have sex with her.

Sally: So you’re saying that a man can be friends with a woman he finds unattractive.

Harry: Nuh, you pretty much wanna nail’em too.

Sally: What if they don’t want to have sex with you?

Harry: Doesn’t matter, because the sex thing is already out there so the friendship is ultimately doomed and that is the end of the story.

Sally: Well I guess we’re not going to be friends then.

Harry: Guess not.

Sally: That’s too bad. You are the only person I knew

in New York.

(Louis Armstrong breaks into “You say neither, I say….”.

They’ve reached the Big Apple and are unloading Harry’s luggage)

Harry: Thanks for the ride.

Sally: Yeah, it was interesting.

Harry: It was nice knowing you.

Sally: Yeah.

(They shake hands)

Sally: Well have a nice life.

Harry: You too.


$ Do you think Ingrid Bergman doesn’t want to stay or does Humphrey Bogart want her to leave?

$ I don’t know. I haven’t concentrated. I have so much to catch up on that I was thinking what to do in the first place after class.

$ Would you like to find a painless way to do all your duties?

$ I know how to do that. The point is the work has really piled up.

$ Let’s get back to the film. Step 1: choose a film that you like, that has subtitles in your mother tongue and in the foreign language that you learn, i.e. English. Step 2: watch the film in your native version so that you are sure you know the outline of the plot. Step 3: when you decide you want to relax watching a movie and you have approximately 1 hour for that, take your DVD, the remote control, your English notebook and a pen. Start the film with English subtitles and scene by scene, sentence by sentence check whether you fully understand what the subtitle says. You can also print out the text of the whole film script from the Internet. Then, underline expressions that are not clear to you. Another thing. What I like doing is copying expressions I perfectly understand, even though, I wouldn’t be able to make them up myself. Or which appeal to my sense of humor. Let’s get started now.

Chapter V – Part 4

Waitress: Hi, what can I get ya?

Harry: I’ll have a number three.

Sally: I’d like the chef salad please with the oil and vinegar on the side and the apple pie a la mode.

Waitress: Chef and apple a la mode.

Sally: But I’d like the pie heated and I don’t want the ice cream on top I want it on the side and I’d like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it if not then no ice cream just whipped cream but only if it’s real if it’s out of a can then nothing.

Waitress: Not even the pie?

Sally: No, just the pie, but then not heated.

Waitress: Uh huh.

Sally: What?

Harry: Nothing, nothing. So how come you broke up with Sheldon?

Sally: How you know we broke up?

Harry: Because if you didn’t break up you wouldn’t be here with me, you’d be off with Sheldon the wonder-schlong.

Sally: First of all, I am not *with* you, and second of all it is none of your business why we broke up.

Harry: You’re right, you’re right, I don’t want to know.

Sally: Well if you must know, it was because he was very jealous and I had these days-of-the-week underpants.

Harry: (imitates a wrong answer buzzer) uah! I’m sorry. I need a judge’s ruling on this…days-of-week underpants.

Sally: Yes. They had the days of the week on them and I thought they were sort of funny. And then one day Sheldon says to me, ‘You never wear Sunday’.

It’s all suspicious, where was Sunday, where was Sunday? And I told him and he didn’t believe me.

Harry: Why?

Sally: They don’t make Sunday.

Harry: Why?

Sally: Because of God.

(They’ve finished eating.)

Sally: (talking to herself) Ok, so fifteen percent of my share is ninety… six ninety. This leaves seven.

(To Harry) What? Do I have something on my face?

Harry: You’re a very attractive person.

Sally: Thank you.

Harry: Amanda never said how attractive you were.

Sally: Well may be she doesn’t think I’m attractive.

Harry: I don’t think it’s a matter of opinion, empirically you are attractive.

Sally: Amanda is my friend.

Harry: So?

Sally: So you’re going with her.

Harry: So?

Sally: So you’re coming on to me!

Harry: No I wasn’t. What?

(Sally is not impressed, jaw drops, wide eyes)

Harry: Can’t a man say a woman is attractive without it being a come-on?

Alright, alright, let’s just say just for the sake of argument that it was a come-on. What do you want me to do about it? I take it back, ok? I take it back.

Sally: You can’t take it back.

Harry: Why not?

Sally: Because it’s already out there.

Harry: Oh gees, what are we suppose to do, call the cops? It’s already out there.

Sally: Just let it lie, ok?

Harry: Great! Let it lie. That’s my policy. That’s what I always say, let it lie. Wanna spend the night at a motel? See what I did? I didn’t let it lie.

Sally: Harry.

Harry: I said I wouldn’t and I didn’t.

Sally: Harry.

Harry: I went the other way.

Sally: Harry.

Harry: What?

Sally: We are just going to be friends, ok?

Harry: Great! Friends! It’s the best thing.