What have you got to lose?
Hi Jin Lu,
What a great posting about the power of positive thinking!
You'll have to let us know soon if you've got the lead (or even a walk-on part as a maid) in the next Agatha Christie production. We'll all have our fingers crossed for you.
Your homework is very good. Well done!
1. You can hardly judge if it's still autumn --> You can hardly tell if it’s still autumn.
Nuala – great.
2. I have several intimate friends --> I have several close friends
Nuala – good
3, I have been offered a perfect chance --> I have been offered an ideal chance… (I think “ideal opportunity” is also right but not as good as “chance”, right?)
Nuala – Ideal opportunity actually collocates better. With chance, I'd go for good.
4. I… have turned out a faithful soul --> I have turned into a faithful soul.
Nuala - perfect
5. Jin Lu sounded too wrong to be a baby name --> Jin Lu would sound awkward as a baby name.
Nuala – much better
6. It’s now reasonable to assume that his parents might have called him “Ming Ming” when he was a little boy – the kind of cute baby-name I wanted but could never get because apparently, Jing Jing, as an official name, also possessed all the essential features of a baby name.
--> His parents might have called him “Ming Ming” when he was little. I wanted a cute baby-name like that too, but could never get one. Because Jing Jing, as an official name, could also be used as a baby name.
Nuala – This is now much easier to understand.
7. But they have been, in a quiet way, very important and indispensible. The time and situations they appeared never allow a baby name.
--> But they are already part of me now. There was never a right time for a baby name, but maybe I just never needed one.
Nuala – Great, much improved!
You asked about what happened when I brought my report card home with the comment Nuala should work more and talk less on it. I don't remember much of the detail. The main reason I remember what the teacher wrote at all was that we had a kind of report card book that each teacher filled in each year. So for the whole seven years I was at primary school that report from primary 1 followed me around like a bad smell. It's still my belief that my primary 2 teacher looked at what my primary 1 teacher wrote and just copied it. And so on and so for the rest of my primary school days. So I ended up with this terrible reputation as a chatter-box that was completely unfounded (honest)!
What I do remember of the day I brought home that first report card home was my dad sitting me up on the kitchen table so that he could look me in the eye. I knew right then that I was in terrible trouble. He wagged his finger at me and said 'This is very serious young lady. School isn't for playing. School is for working. Do you understand?'
I think I turned over a new leaf for about a day. And then I was back to my naughty ways again.
Sounds like you were a saint Jin Lu or did that all change once you got to primary school too?
Let's take a look in detail at a few aspects of your last post:
1. There are a few times you haven't kept your structures parallel. For example:
This Monday I did something I had never done before: going to an audition
It would be better to keep both verbs in the past simple (did and went)
Can you see how to improve this sentence (I made one little change for you – I added an as and changed like to as)?
One day I met my Korean friends, and they looked happy as a child when they ate their food
2. Here are a couple of places where your vocabulary isn't quite right:
They were recruiting for the cast.
We recruit for staff but audition for a cast.
The verb here (accompany) is a bit too formal. Can you think of a way of making it more informal (I cut out a couple of words – to tour - here to tighten it up a bit)?
He asked if I could accompany him around Beijing
3. A couple of times your meaning isn't very clear.
It was a decision I took a long five seconds to make. It should’ve taken no time at all.
Five seconds doesn't seem long to me at all. In fact five seconds seems like no time at all. I know that sometimes even a short time can seem very long so maybe that's what you were getting at here. But I'm not quite sure.
I was nearly drowned when younger
Again, I'm not sure what you wanted to say here but I suspect (though I could be wrong) that someone didn't hold your head under water and try to kill you. That's what I was nearly drowned means. If someone didn't really try to kill you, do you know what you should have written instead?
4. Finally, a few of article problems cropped up. Can you figure our the 3 places where articles (a, an or the) need to go in or come out in these two sentences?
The drama group of English department of University of Heidelberg.
… I hid in the backstage and voiced-acted for the Juliet (in Romeo and Juliet).
Once again, I'd just like to say how good your writing is. And also say what a great turn of phrase you have. These, for example, are really lovely:
What could be more magical than giving life to the silent words?
I give them light, and wait for their blooming
And your lighthouse painting and calligraphy at the end of your piece was beautiful too.
Talk to you again soon,
positive thinking – imaging and thinking of things in a positive, happy, successful way
the lead – the main actor in a film or play
a walk-on part – a very small part in a play where the actors has no lines to say
It's still my belief – I continue to believe
a chatter-box – someone who talks a lot about things that are not serious or important
completely unfounded – 100% without evidence or proof
I was in terrible trouble – My father was very angry with me and was going to giving a telling off
turned over a new leaf – changed my behaviour form being bad to being good
you were a saint – you were very good, very well-behaved
turn of phrase - the ability to express yourself well
calligraphy - the art of producing beautiful writing, often created with a special pen or brush
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