Министерство образования и науки Российской Федерации
Государственное образовательное учреждение
высшего профессионального образования
НИЖЕГОРОДСКИЙ ГОСУДАРСТВЕННЫЙ ЛИНГВИСТИЧЕСКИЙ УНИВЕРСИТЕТ
ИМ. Н.А. ДОБРОЛЮБОВА
Нижний Новгород 2005
Печатается по решению редакционно-издательского совета НГЛУ им. Н.А.Добролюбова
УДК 802. 071. 13
Учебные материалы по теме “Телефон” для студентов II курса переводческого факультета. – Нижний Новгород: НГЛУ им. Н.А. Добролюбова, 2005. - с.
Настоящие учебные материалы предназначены для организации работы студентов II курса над темой “Телефон”.
Э.Г. Курятникова канд. филол. наук, доцент кафедры английского языка переводческого факультета
П.Ю.Степанянц, старший преподаватель кафедры английского языка переводческого факультета
Рецензент: Т.В.Градская, канд. филол. наук, зав.кафедрой английского языка переводческого факультета
© Нижегородский государственный лингвистический университет им. Н.А. Добролюбова, 2005
C O N T E N T S
Text 1. The Telephone
Text 2. Mobile Telephones
Making Telephone Calls
3.1. Getting Through
3.2. Wrong Number
3.3. Asking about Flight Prices
3.4. Asking about tickets
3.5. Ordering a Taxi
3.6. Avoiding Misunderstanding
3.7. Cancelling a Hotel Booking
3.8. Changing an Appointment
3.9. Arranging a Job Interview
4.1. Making Telephone Calls from a Hotel
4.2. An Embarrassing Situation
4.3. How to Use a Public Telephone
4.4. Ordering Tickets over the Telephone
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION on the TOPIC
It’s Interesting to Know
5.1. On Not Answering the Telephone
5.2. An Untimely Call
5.4. Renting a House
5.5. Second-Hand Noise
FOLLOW UP DISCUSSION
1. telephone - means, system of transmitting the human voice to a distance by electric current; apparatus (with receiver and mouthpiece) for this.
At present he is not on the phone.
2. telephone directory, n – list of names (and usu. addresses) in ABC order.
If you don’t remember his phone number, you can always look it up (consult) in the telephone directory.
3. telephone exchange, n – control office where connexions are made.
Could you inform the exchange that our telephone is out of order?
4. telephone operator, n – person who operates or works the telephone.
There is no automatic connexion, dial the operator.
5. switchboard, n - apparatus with numerous switches for making connexions by telephone – коммутатор
The switchboard is an essential part of the telephone exchange.
6. telephone call, n - message, summons.
I’ll give you a call.
7. call-box, n - small cabin (in Gr. Britain more usu. called a telephone kiosk) with a public telephone.
If you are not on the phone you can make your call from a public call-box.
8. housing, n - protective covering of the machine (telephone apparatus), корпус.
The housing of the telephone is attached to the connecting box by means of a telephone cable.
9. dial, n - the wheel on a telephone with numbered holes for the fingers, which is moved round when one makes a telephone call.
dial, v - make a telephone call.
How do I dial Paris?
10. cradle, n - the place the telephone receiver rests, receiver-rest.
Put down the receiver on the cradle.
11. telephone receiver, n – the part of a telephone that is held to one’s ear.
The telephone receiver is out of order.
12. mouthpiece, n - the part of a telephone that is held near the mouth;
ear-piece, n - the part of a telephone that is held near the ear.
The telephone receiver consists of two parts – the mouthpiece and the ear-piece.
13. get through (to sb.), v – reach someone by telephone.
I could not get through to his office, the line was always engaged.
14. hang up, v - finish a telephone conversation by putting the receiver back; syn. ring off.
I was so angry I hung up on her (while she was talking).
15. buzz, n- humming sound as that of bees (fig.), make the right buzz – about a telephone, when one hears the dialing tone.
The telephone makes the right buzz when you pick up the receiver but then it starts buzzing again.
16. hold on, v - wait (on the telephone).
Could you hold on? I’ll just see if he is in.
17. pip, n - a short high-sounding note as used in the operation of telephones.
18. number engaged signal – signal showing that the number you want is busy.
19. be dead(fig.) - about the telephone not working.
The telephone has gone dead.
20. for nothing, pron. - for no money.
You can call to you office from the public call-box for nothing.
21. go right, v - start working properly, correctly (about machines).
22. of one’s own accord - without being asked; willingly.
Sometimes our telephone goes right of its own accord.
23. get sb. on the phone - get through to sb.
I called him several times but I couldn’t get him on the phone.
24. be cut off, v - be disconnected.
We were cut off in the middle of our telephone conversation.
25. purring noise - (about the telephone) – make a low continuous sound, syn. dialling tone.
I hear that purring noise again. I seem to be cut off.
26. report (a fault), v - make a complain about sth.
If you are going out report the fault from a public call-box.
Telephone can be used as a noun or a verb, and so can the short form ‘phone’. If you want to telephone your mother (or call her, or ring her, give her a ring, give her a call), you dial her phone number, which can be found (looked up) in the directory. If it is a long-distance call, you may have to ask the operator to connect you. The phone will ring, and if your mother is at home she will answer it by picking up the receiver, if she is busy she may ask you to call back later; if she doesn’t want to speak to you, she may hang up (replace the receiver, ring off); or if she is already on the phone when you call her, her number is engaged (busy AmE). A telephone in a public place is a phone box or call box.
27. reverse (transfer) charge call – a call which is paid by the person you telephone; collect call (AmE.).
I’d like to make a reverse charge call.
28. coin-operated telephone - public telephone which accepts coins to connect you.
This telephone accepts coins only.
29. phone card-operated telephone –a telephone which accepts special green cards to connect you.
This telephone accepts only cards.
30. emergency calls (Fire, Police, Ambulance) – calls made when a sudden happening requires quick action.
You can make an emergency call for nothing from any public box.
31. mobile phone – a telephone that you can carry with you and use in any place.
32. cellphone = cellular phone – a telephone that you can carry with you, that works from a system that uses a network of radio stations to pass on signals.
33. calltime – the amount of time that is available for the user on a mobile phone to make calls.
You get 20 minutes free calltime a day, but only after 7 p.m.
34. handset – the part of a mobile phone that you hold in your hand.
35. handsfree – mobile phone equipment that allows you to speak to someone without having to hold the phone either by having an earpiece or by having speakers in a car.
36. ringtone – the sound made by a telephone, especially a mobile phone, when someone is calling it.
Select a personal ringtone for you mobile from over 700 great tunes, including pop, rock, TV and movies.
37. sim card – a plastic card in a mobile phone that stores your personal information and allows you to use the phone.
38. SMS – short messaging system – a feature on a mobile phone that allows a user to send or receive written messages.
39. speed dial – a special feature on a telephone that lets you dial someone’s telephone number very quickly by pressing just one button.
II. READING COMPREHENSION
TEXT 1. THE TELEPHONE
By means of the telephone we can communicate with people who are miles away from us. The telephone consists of the housing with the number dial and the cradle and the receiver resting on the cradle. A cord connects the receiver and the housing. The housing is attached to the connecting box by means of a telephone cable. The telephone receiver has a mouthpiece into which you speak and an ear-piece through which you hear.
Public telephones can be found in main streets and in some post-offices, large department stores, pubs and restaurants. There are two main kinds.
Coin-operated telephones accept coins only. You can make local, national and international calls from these telephones and use all operator services.
Phonecard-operated telephones accept only phonecards – green telephone cards which can be bought at post-offices, shops which display the green phonecard sign. Instructions for using the phonecard are given beside the telephone.
Telephone directories list home and business numbers in the local area and also contain information on dialling, dialling codes, and making international calls.
Directories are usually found near telephones. There are also Yellow Pages directories of business numbers.
Leaflets on international dialling and operator services are available at TICs throughout the country.
There are two ways of making telephone calls in Britain: direct dialling, where you dial the number yourself; and operator-assisted, where the operator connects you. Dialling direct is cheaper, quicker and usually easier than making calls through the operator.
The operator can connect you to special services, and give you information about them.
Dialling codes (or area codes) are the numbers which you dial before the actual number you are calling. All British area codes start with zero. Do not use the area code if you are dialling within the same area; for example, if you are in central London, omit the 071 code from London numbers.
The cost for calls within Britain depends on the time of day, the length of the call and the distance. The most expensive time of day to call is 09.00 – 13.00, Monday to Friday. The cheapest time is after 18.00 Monday to Friday and any time at the weekend.
To dial the international call direct, you dial 010 followed by the country code, then the area code, then the number you require.
You do not need to insert coins or a phonecard for any of these services.
International operator: 155
This operator will connect you to the international number you want and help with any quieries [‘kwi∂riz] (question, especially one raising a doubt about the truth of sth.)
International Directory Enquiries: 153
This operator provides numbers and dialling codes for numbers outside Britain.
Domestic Operator: 100
This operator can assist with calls within Britain that you can’t dial direct, or help you with services such as alarm calls, reverse (transfer) charge calls (where the person you telephone pays for the call), faulty lines and difficulties in dialling.
Directory Enquiries: 192 (or 142 in London if you want to find a London number)
Emergency Services (Fire, Police, Ambulance): 999
These calls are free and can be dialled 24 hours a day from all telephones.
Exercise 1. Comment on the statements based on the text you’ve read. While doing the task, you should, first, say which of the statements are true, which are partly true and which are false, and then elaborate on them.
By means of the telephone people can communicate with far off places.
The most important part of the telephone is the dial.
The telephone receiver consists of three main parts.
Public telephones in Britain are usually found at post-offices.
Public telephones in Britain accept coins only.
Phonecards are always very difficult to buy, because they are in great demand.
English public telephones are not easy to use because the instructions how to use them are never given.
Telephone directories contain home and business numbers in the local area.
Telephone directories are usually kept at local post-offices.
Yellow Pages directories of business numbers are usually found near telephones.
Leaflets on international dialling and operator services are available at every post-office.
You cannot hope to make a trunk call from a public box in Britain.
The operator-assisted dialling takes more time and is much cheaper.
The operators are not expected to give you any information about special services.
All British area codes start with nine.
If you are dialling within the same area the area code is not necessary.
The cost of calls depends on the time of the call.
You cannot make an international call without the operator’s assistance.
All the calls from a public box must be paid for.
Reverse charge calls can be put through the domestic operator in Britain.
Exercise 2. Answer the following questions about the text.
What parts does the telephone consist of?
Where can one find public telephones in Britain? And in this country?
What are the two main kinds of public telephones in Britain?
Which of the two is more convenient?
Where can you buy phonecards?
What numbers do telephone directories list?
What are Yellow Pages directories?
What ways of making telephone calls does the text dwell on?
Which of the two is quicker, cheaper and easier?
Where can you find an area code? What is the first digit in British codes?
What does the cost of a call depend on?
What is the most expensive time to call? What is the cheapest time?
How do you make an international call from a public box?
What are the useful telephone numbers in Britain?
What are the duties of a domestic operator?
How much are the emergency services in Britain? Are there such services in this country?
Exercise 3. Find the following words in the text and paraphrase sentences in which they are used.
make a call
an international call
reverse charge calls
Exercise 1. Fill the gaps in the following sentences with words from the list.
The telephone consists of the … with the number … and … and … the … resting on the cradle.
The telephone receiver has a … into which you speak and a … through which you hear.
Public telephones can be found in … streets and in some post-offices.
… telephones accept coins only.
… telephones accept only phonecards.
You can make … , … and … calls from these telephones.
Telephone … list home and business numbers in the local area.
There are also … … directories of business numbers.
When you dial the number yourself you make use of … … .
If the operator connects you you make use of … … .
Every area in Britain has its own … … .
To dial an international call you dial 010 followed by the … … , then the … … , then the number required.
If you have neither a coin nor a phonecard you can make a … … call.
The … operator can assist with calls within Britain that you can’t dial direct.
When you dial 999 you get … … free of charge.
domestic, transfer charge call, area code, operator-assisted dialling, country code, direct dialling, dialling code, directories, international, dial, coin-operated, earpiece, mouthpiece, housing, cradle, receiver, main, phonecard-operated, local, national.
Exercise 2. Supply words and expressions which fit the following definitions and make sentences with them.
list of names in ABC order
person who operates or works the telephone
small cabin with a public telephone
protective covering of a telephone
the wheel on a telephone with numbered holes for the fingers which is moved round when one makes a call
a place where a telephone receiver rests
for no money, free of charge
a call which is paid by the person you telephone
telephone which accepts coins to connect you
telephone which accepts special green cards
calls made when a sudden happening requires quick action
a call made with the help of an operator
number that you dial before the actual number
operator that assists with calls within Britain
Exercise 3. Translate the following sentences into English.
С помощью телефона мы можем общаться с теми, кто находится очень далеко от нас.
Телефон состоит из корпуса с диском и рычага, на котором лежит телефонная трубка.
Общественные телефоны в Британии находятся на главных улицах, в почтовых отделениях, больших универмагах, ресторанах и пабах.
С общественного телефона можно позвонить внутри города, в другой город и в другую страну.
Телефоны-автоматы в Британии принимают либо монеты, либо специальные зеленые телефонные карточки.
В телефонном справочнике можно найти список домашних и рабочих телефонов в городе, а также информацию о телефонных кодах, о том, как звонить и как позвонить за границу.
В Британии можно звонить либо без помощи оператора, либо с помощью оператора, если возникают какие-то сложности с набором.
Если Вы звоните без помощи оператора, это экономит время и гораздо дешевле.
Все коды английских городов начинаются с нуля.
Стоимость разговора в Британии зависит от времени дня, продолжительности и расстояния.
Самое дорогое время для разговора по телефону с 9 до 13 часов с понедельника до пятницы, а самое дешевое – после 18 с понедельника до пятницы и в любое время в выходные.
Чтобы позвонить заграницу, нужно набрать 010, а затем код страны, код города и нужный номер.
Если Вам нужно вызвать скорую помощь, звоните 999, оператор соединит Вас незамедлительно и это не требует платы.
Если у Вас нет ни мелочи, ни специальной телефонной карточки, Вы можете позвонить за счет того, кому Вы звоните.
Exercise 4. Act as an interpreter.
Mr. Henderson: Is there a telephone at your lodgings?
Andreyev: Да, но я еще не набрался храбрости воспользоваться им.
Mr.H.: Oh, there is no need to be afraid. It’s quite a simple process. The same as in your country.
A.: Возможно, но говорить на иностранном языке по телефону гораздо труднее.
Mr.H.: You do it once and you won’t be afraid any more. Just lift the receiver and wait for the dialling tone. This tone indicates that you can start to dial the number you require. Dial the first three numbers of the area code, for instance my number is 063-2134. So dial 063 and then four remaining numbers.
A.: Звучит очень просто.
Mr.H.: Child’s play. The rather shrill “Buzz-buzz-buzz” indicates the engaged tone.
A.: Автоматическое телефонное обслуживание у Вас повсюду в стране?
Mr.H.: Oh, no. Some small towns are not switched over to the automatic service. Where the manual service operates you call the domestic operator by lifting the receiver and giving the full number you require. The operator will connect you directly. By the way, when you ring through to my office, ask the operator to put you through to me – extension 12.
A.: Мне бы хотелось позвонить другу в Шотландию, пока я здесь.
Mr.H.: That is a trunk call. It’s better to ring after 7 o’clock in the evening. The call will be much cheaper then. You can either put your call through the international operator or make your call through the ISD (International Subscriber Dialling).
A.: Возможно я позвоню ему завтра с телефона-автомата.
Mr.H.: Remember to have plenty of small change with you and see that the coins are not bent, or battered. Don’t press button A until you are definitely connected, otherwise you’ll lose your money. There is a Telephone Directory in all public boxes, so that you can find any local number you require, otherwise ring “Enquiries” – 192.
A.: Большое спасибо за информацию.
Text 2. Mobile Telephones
Your wireless phone gives you the powerful ability to communicate by voice, almost anywhere, anytime. Handsets (together with other technologies such as the video recorder and the domestic answering machine) have rapidly entered our lives and reduced or removed any need for people to stay in one place. It means that a cell phone user can now travel around without being out of touch.
The advantages the mobile phone offers its user are innumerable. Not only does it allow to make local, national and international calls but also stores the numbers you have dialed, received or missed. For example you can redial the most recently dialed number by pressing just one button. You can store frequently dialed phone numbers with a name in the SIM card or the phone memory. You then simply select the required name to recall the associated number.
When somebody calls you, the phone rings and shows the incoming call animation. If the caller can be identified, the caller’s phone number or name, if stored in your phonebook, is displayed.
If you are unable to answer a call for any reason, you can find out who was calling you, provided that this service is available. In this way, you can call the person back, if necessary.
The silent mode is convenient when discretion is required and you wish to stop the phone from making any noise, in a theatre for example. You can place the current call on hold whenever you want. You can make another call while you have a call in progress if this service is supported by the network. Of these two calls, one is active and the other is on hold and you can swap between the calls.
The mute feature temporarily disables your phone’s microphone. Mute prevents the party on the other end of the line from hearing you, but does not interfere with your ability to hear them. You can also send text messages by phone using the SMS (Short Message Service) function.
Act as Interpreter:
А: Выход очередного “умного телефона” Nokia поднял новую волну дискуссий о том, каким должен быть телефон нового поколения, что в нем должно присутствовать, а что все-таки оставить для карманных и портативных компьютеров. Не менее важен и другой аспект: насколько “компьютерные” замашки трубок препятствуют работе с телефоном именно как с переговорным устройством?
В: Попробуем разобраться в этой нелегкой проблеме на примере нового смартфона. Ровно половину передней поверхности телефона занимает огромный цветной дисплей. Блок кнопок ютится снизу.
А: Да, а кнопки приема и отбоя находятся с самого края, и их нажатие превращается в гимнастическое упражнение, чреватое тем, что телефон просто выскользнет.
В: Перечислю некоторые возможности новой модели. WorldMate – помощник в ваших путешествиях. Предъявит текущее время в любой точке мира, даст прогноз погоды, покажет карты различных стран. Wayfinder – дорожные карты стран Западной Европы, планы находящихся там городов.
А: Это приложение было бы особенно ценно при наличии карт российских дорог. Но, увы, их в телефоне нет.
В: Это минус, я согласен с Вами. К тому же, в инструкции к телефону нет ни слова об установленных программах, так что даже разобраться, что к чему – дело непростое.
А: С мультимедийной точки зрения все обстоит еще хуже. Телефон умеет играть mр3-файлы и даже использовать их в качестве сигналов вызова. Однако большая неприятность в том, что в новой модели нет стереовыхода на наушники, слушать же музыку в одном ухе, согласитесь, не слишком приемлемо.
В: Как часто бывает, ждали от нового смартфона, пожалуй, большего, однако и рядовым представителем телефонного племени его назвать тоже нельзя.
А: Вы правы, однако все перечисленное дает пищу для размышления потенциальным покупателям: настолько ли вам нужен смартфон, насколько вы его хотите?
III. LISTENING COMPREHENSION
Making Telephone Calls
3.1. Getting Through
Here are the phrases you may expect to hear in telephone conversations.
Hello, this is Sue, Sue James
My name is Jack Simpson
5321. Garston Motors
I’m Jack Simpson. Good morning
Sales. Can I help you?
Asking If Someone Is In
Can I speak to Mr. Bild, please?
Hello, is George there by any chance?
Could you put me through to Mrs.Dylan, please?
I’d like to speak to your husband if I may.
Person Wanted Not There
Hold the line, please. I’ll see if he’s in the office.
I’m afraid she isn’t in at the moment.
Sorry, she’s just gone out. Would you like to ring back later?
He’s away for a few days. Can I give him a message?
He’s out of town this week I’m afraid.
When Will the Person Wanted Be In?
What time could I reach her?
Will he be at home this evening?
Can I contact him on Saturday?
Right, I’ll phone again next week.
Thanks a lot. Goodbye.
Thanks a lot. Goodbye.
I’ll get back to you soon.
Thanks for calling.
Task 1. Listen to the two conversations on the cassette. While listening, complete the table below.
Country of meeting
Where is the person called
Who will make the next call?
Complete the following conversations with phrases from the list below. Use each phrase only once.
Hello, is that 10127?
Can I speak to Jack Simpson, please?
I see. Well, what time will he be there?
Right, I’ll ring again then. Thanks a lot.
Oh, I’m fine, thanks. You know, you gave my address to a friend of yours?
That’s right. Roger O’Hare, that was his name. Do you know what I’ve done? I can’t find his phone number.
Ah, thanks very much. I can call him back now. That’s a real help
Yes, it would be nice to see you again. Goodbye for now.
I’d like to speak to someone about putting forward a delivery.
I’m phoning about our order for three motors.
Yes, it’s FC/172/Y. We’d like earlier delivery if possible.
OK. Could you ring me back today?
That’ll be fine. Thanks very much
I’ll put you through to Order Inquiries..
From about two this afternoon
I’l1 look it up for you.... It’s 01 420 5071.
Yes, late this afternoon if that’s convenient.
Yes, it is. Can I help you?
Not at all. We must meet and have a drink some time.
I’m afraid he’s out of the office at the moment.
Garston Motors. Can 1 help you?
Right. Well, I’ll have to check with the works.
Can you give me the order number?
The one who does computer software?
Order Inquiries. Can I help you?
Oh, hello, Meg. How are you keeping?
You’re welcome. Goodbye.
3.2. Wrong Number
But I found this number in the Yellow Pages.
Well, this is the number 1 was asked to ring.
Sorry. I must have got the wrong area code.
No, this isn’t the number you want.
Who did you say you wanted to speak to?
No, I’m not a forwarding company. This is Mrs. Thompson speaking.
Sorry, the number’s changed.
I think it’s 492 3702, but you might check with directory inquiries.
What number are you calling?
You must have the wrong number. Nobody by that name works here.
Task 3. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
Who is the person calling?
What number has he dialled?
Why did the confusion arise?
3.3. Asking About Flight Prices
Task 4.1. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
What is the party called?
What is the customer’s name?
Where is the customer planning to fly?
What does the customer want to know?
What must the operator know before answering the customer’s questions?
What class does the customer want to fly?
How many days is the customer planning to stay in Penang?
When does the customer want to leave?
What ticket can the operator offer?
Task 4.2. Listen to the conversation again and complete the table below:
Name of Airline
Cost of flight
3.4. Asking About Tickets
Task 5. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
Who is the person calling?
Where is he calling?
What city is he in?
Why doesn’t he get the tickets?
What does the booking clerk suggest he should do?
What do the tickets cost?
3.5. Ordering a Taxi
Task 6. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
What is the name of the taxi company?
What is the caller’s name?
What address is she at?
What time is she ordering a taxi for?
Where would she like to go?
Where will she be in ten minutes’ time?
3.6. Avoiding Misunderstanding
Person calling / Person called
Sorry, I couldn’t hear what you said. Would you mind repeating the price?
I didn’t catch what you said. Would you please repeat that last remark?
Could you possibly speak more slowly?
This is a very bad line, I’m afraid. Can I ring you back?
3.7. Cancelling a Hotel Booking
I’d like to know the price for a single room with shower for one night, please.
I’d like to make a reservation for Friday 27 August, please.
Are conference room facilities available at your hotel?
Is that Advance Reservations? I’d like to reserve a double room with shower for three nights, please.
Is it a room with a view over the town?
You have a reservation for me for tomorrow. I’ll be checking in rather late, I’m afraid, at about 11 p.m. You will hold the room for me, won’t you?
Sorry, it looks as if I’ll have to change my booking.
Something urgent has happened, so I’ve had to change my plans.
We’re fully booked for the night, sir. If you like, we could recommend another hotel.
Yes, we’ve booked the room you wanted. The terms are ₤38.50 for a single room with shower and ₤45 for a double room with bath. That includes breakfast, service and value added tax.
Sorry, we’re completely booked up, but you may like to try the Beach Court Hotel. This is their phone number.
We haven’t any double rooms left but I can offer you a suite at ₤60 a night.
I’m awfully sorry, there are no hotel rooms left. Shall I look for private accommodation for you, or try to find a hotel out of town.
Would you mind sending me written confirmation?
Task 7. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
What hotel has been called?
What does the caller want to do?
What does the operator put the caller on to?
What does the clerk need to know to cancel the booking?
What was the reservation?
Did the caller want to change the booking?
3.8. Changing an Appointment
Person calling / Person called
I’ll just check my appointment book.
When would be convenient for you?
Sorry, I’ve got something scheduled then. Could we arrange something else?
Could you send me the confirmation of the appointment?
Shall we say Wednesday at 3 o’clock?
Would it be possible to postpone our meeting?
Things are going smoothly, so we can meet as arranged.
Could you manage to fix another appointment?
How about the 4th? Are you free then?
So sorry I missed you when you wanted to visit me. I was away all week and only got your message too late.
I’m phoning you because I don’t think I’ll be able to come after all.
Let’s fix another date then. Would it suit you if we met at the club on Friday afternoon?
Task 8. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
Why is Bob Ross calling Mr. Brickwood?
What is Mr. Brickwood’s first name?
The line wasn’t very good, was it?
What date was the appointment fixed for?
What reasons did Bob Ross have for not keeping the appointment?
What day did Bob Ross suggest to fix the appointment for?
What date did they finally agree upon?
Who would be the receiving party?
What did Mr. Ross suggest they should do on the appointed day?
3.9. Arranging a Job Interview
Task 9. Listen to the conversation and answer the following questions:
Who was Cheryl Nelson calling?
What is the name of the head of the department?
Why was Cheryl Nelson calling?
Where did she find the information about the vacancy?
Did she feel that she fulfilled the qualifications listed?
Were afternoons usually better for Miss Nelson?
What time was the appointment fixed for?
IV. SUPPLEMENTARY TEXTS
4.1. Making Telephone Calls
A. Imagine that a hotel guest in Bali has to telephone London. Read the dialogue between the guest and the switchboard operator.
Operator : Switchboard.
Guest : Hello. This is Miss Wilson, room 176. I’d like to make a call to
Operator : Certainly, madam. What number do you want?
Guest : 071 6488
Operator: So that’s London 071 6488. I’m afraid there is a three-hour
delay to London, madam.
Guest : Oh, is there? Can you tell me what time it is in London now?
Operator: Yes, it’s 11 p.m. here, so it’s 4 p.m. in London.
Guest : (to herself) 4 o’clock … and a three-hour delay and they leave
the office at 5.30. No, I think I’ll make the call tomorrow. Could
I book a call for 9 o’clock tomorrow morning, London time?
Operator: Of course. So that’s London 071 6488, tomorrow at 9 a.m. –
that’s four o’clock our time.
Guest : That’s right. Thank you very much.
B. Here is a notice about making a telephone call from a hotel:
If you wish to make a telephone call:
Pick up the receiver. When the switchboard operator answers, give your name and room number, the country, city and number that you wish to ring. Please speak clearly.
Replace the receiver. The operator will ring you back when your call is ready.
When you are telephoning another country, there can be a delay of several hours. Sometimes it is better to book a call in advance. There is a time difference between countries. Sometimes, your telephone call is not successful. Either you get cut off – you completely lose contact with the other person. Or you get a bad line – it’s difficult to hear what the other person is saying. If this happens, replace the telephone. Pick it up again and say to the operator: Can you reconnect me to my number in London? I had a bad line. Can you get my number in London again? I was cut off.
Exercise 1. Answer the following questions about the dialogue.
What place did the guest order London from?
What was the problem about the call?
Why did the guest change the time of the call?
What time did the guest want her call to be put through?
Who did she want to telephone?
What’s the time difference between London and Bali?
Exercise 2. Imagine that you are staying at a hotel in New York and you want to make a business call to your office in Moscow. Act out your talk with the telephone operator. You do not know how to call the ISD.
Exercise 3. Help your English friend to make a call to London from Nizhny Novgorod.
Exercise 4. Have a talk with the domestic operator in London. Remember the services of the domestic operator.
4.2. An Embarrassing Situation
Margaret: What’s the mater with the phone?
Ann: I don’t know. It was all right when I used it. Have you tried getting the exchange?
Margaret: I can’t get anything at all. When did you use it?
Ann: Some time in the afternoon. Is it quite dead?
Margaret: No, it makes the right buzz when you pick up the receiver, but as soon as you dial a couple of figures it starts buzzing again. I tried three times.
Ann: Well, I suppose you can always report the fault from another instrument if necessary. I believe you can do it for nothing from a call-box.
Margaret: A lot of help that is.
Ann: Well, the only other thing I can suggest is to try again later. It sometimes goes right of its own accord.
Margaret: No, that’s no use. I must get through now. I have to go out. Can I borrow you umbrella? I suppose it’s still pouring.
Ann: Yes, do. If you are going out, you might as well tell the exchange about the trouble.
Margaret: Yes, I will. I shan’t be very long. Why don’t we have supper when I get back?
Ann: Yes. Let’s. I will get the food ready while you are phoning.
Margaret: Hello! Is that 212 – 3409?
Margaret: Is that you Jane? It’s Margaret speaking. I tried to get you on the phone from my place, but our telephone is out of order. I had to come out in this pouring rain. I couldn’t wait. I have so much to tell you. You know, the boy next door, I was so crazy about, invited me out to a restaurant last night. Oh, Bill is really wonderful. He is tall, broad-shouldered, dark-eyed … . I’m sure you like the type!
X.: I do, but I must tell you, my dear …
Margaret: And, fancy, he is one of the best football players.
X.: I hate young people playing football.
Margaret: Oh, you do, do you? Since when may I ask? As far as I remember yesterday you didn’t mind going to a football match instead of your lectures. Was it because Henry went as well?
X.: Now I understand …
Margaret: Will you speak louder? I can’t hear. These public call-boxes are such a nuisance! And don’t forget we’re going to a dance tonight. I’ll introduce you to a nice chap, Bill’s friend. I am sure we’ll have a lot of fun.
X.: No chaps for Jane, my dear Margaret or Mary – whoever you are.
Margaret: What do you mean? Who is speaking?
X.: It’s Jane’s mother. Jane’s out. Thank you for the information. And in the future I’ll see to it that my daughter doesn’t stay away from her lectures and thinks more of her studies. Good-bye!
a nuisance , n. – thing, person, act, etc., that cause trouble or offence.
These public boxes are such a nuisance!
see to sth., v. - to attend to; take care of
Will you see to the children?
stay away from, v., - miss classes, be absent from
I’ll see to it that you don’t stay away from this lecture.
Exercise 1. Answer the given questions:
What was the matter with the telephone?
Why couldn’t Margaret wait? Was her news really urgent?
Who did she speak to?
How did it come about that she failed to recognize who she was speaking to?
When did Margaret realize she was talking to the wrong person?
What was Jane’s secret and how did Margaret let it out?
How did she feel when she replaced the receiver?
Exercise 2. Act out the part of the conversation when Margaret talked over the phone with Jane’s mother.
Exercise 3. Get ready to tell your group mates about embarrassing situations you found yourself in when talking over the phone (getting wrong numbers, mistaking your acquaintances, etc.).
Exercise 4. Compose a short dialogue based on the following facts:
You don’t remember Nick’s telephone number – you have a poor memory for numbers. Your friend advises you to look it up in the telephone directory. You find the page you want is missing. Then you remember that Nick has his telephone installed only six weeks ago – you can’t find it in the directory. Your friend recommends you to call Directory Enquiries to find it out. You do it – the number is engaged. You wait for some minutes, dial the number again; and again it is engaged. Your friend asks you if the matter is urgent. You answer it can wait. Then you friend recommends you to ring Nick up tomorrow.
Exercise 5. Make up dialogues of your own for the following situations:
Helen is ringing you up at your office to explain that something was wrong with the line yesterday and she could not get through to you.
You are expecting a long distance call. The telephone starts ringing. Boston is on the line.
You are in Manchester ringing your friend in London. You hear the ringing tone, then the ringing stops and you hear rapid pips. You fill in the coin.
4.3. How to Use a Public Telephone
Harry, with Peter’s help is making his call from a telephone box with a new type of coin-box. In this type the charge for local calls is only threepence and the procedure for making local calls is slightly different from that with the older boxes.
Harry: Now what do I do?
Peter: You lift the receiver and dial. Then when you hear a buzzing noise insert threepence.
Harry: I see. Let me try. (He dials). I hope the man’s there. He should be. My friend said he would certainly be in London now. Oh, there’s the buzzing noise.
Peter: Insert threepence.
Harry: It won’t go in.
Peter: You are trying to get it into the sixpenny slot.
Harry: Oh, dear! (He puts the money in the right slot). That’s better. But now the line’s gone dead.
Peter: They probably got tired and rang off.
Harry: It’s so confusing. Would you do it, Peter?
Peter: I think you should try again yourself, then you’ll learn.
Harry: Well -
Peter: Try once more. I said I would help you and I will, but -
Harry: Yes, all right. I should learn how to do it. I remember my grandmother was so nervous, she would never use a telephone; she was frightened of it. I don’t want to think I feel the same about English telephones. Ah, I am through! Hello! Hello! I’d like to speak to Mr. MacAndrew -
Peter: Well done!
Harry: He’s there. The girl told me to hold on a minute. Oh, what’s happened? There’s that purring noise. We seem to be cut off again.
Peter: Yes, of course you are! You put your arm down on the receiver rest. I’ll get through for you.
Exercise 1. Answer the given questions about the dialogue.
Why did Harry need Peter’s help while making his call?
When was Harry to insert his coin? What coin was required for his call?
What was Harry’s problem with the coin?
How many times did the line go dead?
Why was Harry disconnected the second time?
Did he finally succeed in getting through to his friend’s office?
What did Peter offer in the long run?
Exercise 2. Make up instructions how to use a public telephone in England on the basis of the text.
Exercise 3. Compare your instructions with the ones given below:
These are the instructions in a London-phone box:
To make a call:
Have money ready 2p, 3p. or 10p.
Listen for continuous purring.
Dial number or code and number.
When you hear rapid pips, press in a coin.
To continue a dialled call put in more money during conversation when you hear rapid pips again.
Emergency calls are free; lift receiver and listen for dial tone (continuous purring), dial 999 and ask operator for Fire, Police or Ambulance.
Exercise 4. Give instructions how to use a public telephone box in this country.
Exercise 5. Compare the instructions and say what is the same about making a call in London and in Nizhny Novgorod.
Exercise 6. Act out dialogue 3.
Exercise 7. Make up a dialogue between a Russian student and his English guest spending a fortnight in Nizhny Novgorod. The guest wants to make a call to London. The Russian student does his best to help him.
Exercise 8. You are on a visit to London. Your English friend helps you to make a call to Russia. Act out a dialogue.
Exercise 9. Act out a telephone talk, make use of the recommended situation notes:
YOU: You hear the telephone ring and hurry to answer it. You hear a man’s voice ask you something, but you can’t hear clearly – the connection is rather poor, so you ask him to talk a little louder. Then you answer him who you are. On hearing the news about your friend you become speechless for a moment, then ask the man where the hospital is. You say you’ll come there as fast you can and thank the man for calling.
The man: He asks you about your telephone number and has to repeat the question twice; then he wants to be certain whether he speaks to the right person. After a silence and a short hesitation he introduces himself and tells you that your friend (mother, father, brother, sister) has had a heart attack (has had a road accident) and has been taken to a hospital. He tries to assure you that the attack (injuries) was (were) not very serious and says he hates to give you bad news. Then he explains what hospital your friend was taken to and gives the address.
Exercise 10. Give a few possible reasons for the following:
In the middle of your telephone conversation you were suddenly cut off.
The operator told you to hang up and dial the same number again.
The operator said: “The dialled number is closed for the time being”.
The operator said: “The subscriber’s phone is switched off or out of the coverage”.
4.4. Ordering Tickets on the Telephone
(Megan, who comes from a small Welsh village, is spending a week in London with friends. She has just had lunch with an aunt, Erica Antrim. Erica wants to take Megan to the theatre.)
Erica: There’s a good play on at the Siddons Theatre. Let’s go tonight.
Megan: I’m sorry, I can’t manage tonight. I’m free on Friday, though.
Erica: Good, I’ll book the seats now. Look, there’s an empty telephone box. Can you look up the number for me – I haven’t my glasses with me. Here’s the right directory.
Megan: It’s 987- 3624.
Erica: Have you used the telephone like this before?
Megan: No, tell me what I have to do.
Erica: You lift the receiver and wait – usually only a second for the dialling tone. Can you hear it?
Megan: Yes, I can.
Erica: Now I’m going to dial the number I want. Now wait. Bother! Listen. That’s the number engaged signal. It’ very difficult getting a theatre box office on the telephone – the number always seems to be engaged. Let’s try the next box we come to.
(They walk along to the Underground station and find a free box there. Erica dials again.)
Erica: Good. The pips – we’re through. Now I put twopence in this slot quickly – you must have the money ready, otherwise you can be cut off again. Hallo! Is that the Siddons Theatre box office?
Box Office: Speaking.
Erica: Have you any seats at a reasonable price for the Friday evening performance this week?
Box Office: The only seats we have left are at the back of the stalls, one pound fifty pence.
Erica: May I have two at 1 pound 50? When must I collect them by?
Box Office: Half an hour before the performance at the latest. After that they may be sold. They are Row W, 39 and 40. What name is it, please?
Erica: Antrim. A-N-T-R-I-M. Thank you. Good-bye.
Have you any seats at a reasonable price for the Friday evening performance? – (of prices) fair, not too much
collect sb., sth. by – call for and take away
When can I collect the tickets by?
Exercise 1. Answer the following questions about the dialogue.
Who were Megan and Erica?
What was the aunt’s suggestion?
What day did they both agree on to go to the theatre?
Why did the aunt have to instruct Megan how to use a telephone?
Did they get through to the box-office at once?
What seats did the aunt order?
When was she to collect the tickets by?
Exercise 2. Here are some opening words in telephone conversations. Continue these dialogues:
Could I use your phone? Ours seems to be out of order and I really ought to call my friend (parents, office).
Do you want me to get Harry on the phone for you?
I’ve been trying to get Peter on the phone for two hours already, but there’s no reply.
Hold on a minute while I get a pen and a paper.
Hallo! Is that Mr. Chain? Say, this is Mr. Johnson.
Could I speak to John, please? – Speaking …
Give me a ring (coll.) sometime next week and we’ll arrange to have dinner together.
Did anyone call me while I was out?
At first I thought it was Jim telephoning me. But I couldn’t hear very well. The connection was poor.
Exercise 3. Make up a dialogue on the following situation.
You are staying in Moscow with friends. While you are out, you find you’ve got some free time, so you decide to telephone an acquiantance of yours. He doesn’t know you’re staying in Moscow. What do you both say in the telephone conversation?
Exercise 4. Make up a dialogue for the following situation.
Basic situation: Robert Wilson who lives in London wants to phone Bill Hartman in San Francisco, California. The number is 066-765500.
1. Robert has to dial 100 and tell the operator he wants “International Services”. She puts him through. 2. He gives the number. The operator does not understand at first and he has to repeat it several times. 3. When he gets the number in San Francisco the switchboard operator puts him through to the wrong extension. A man named Bill Cartwright answers. 4. Wilson is suddenly cut off. He has to explain to the operator in London what has happened. 5. He gets the number again and, this time, the right extension. Bill Hartman’s secretary answers. Hartman has just gone to lunch.
Exercise 5. Order tickets to the theatre over the phone (railway tickets, tickets to the cinema, a football match, a hockey match, etc.)
Exercise 6. Make up a short story beginning with the following words:
We could not use the telephone because it was out of order … .
The telephone rang; its sound frightened each of us. Mary lifted the receiver from its hook before the second ring … .
Exercise 7. Listen to the following stories and answer the questions given after them.
His eyes fell on the telephone, and he ran to it, to put through a call to the Browns’ flat. He didn’t know their number, so Trunks told him to call Directory Enquiries. When Directory Enquiries , after an interminable delay, gave him the number, Trunks told him that all the lines to London were engaged, and that they would call him back. For fifteen minutes he waited in the living-room. Then Trunks phoned to say that there was no reply from the given number.
“Try again!” Arnold shouted.
The voice at the other end was indifferent. “We will, sir!”
Still there was no reply from the Browns’ number.
Question: What could be the reason for the man’s anxiety and impatience?
Early in the morning my mother heard the news. Someone phoned her and she did not get up from her chair after she had hung up. She found a number in the telephone book and asked the operator for it. “Hello, hello,” she said. “Is this Mrs Pearly? Say, this is Mrs Bruce…”
After a while my mother put down the receiver, brushed a white strand of hair away from her ear, and took the receiver up again. “Four-seven-nine” she said. Then while she waited for her party to answer she took a piece of paper and a pencil from a shelf under the telephone and began to make a list. “Hello, Minnie?” she said.
She talked for a few minutes more, then hung up and began calling still other people she had listed.
Questions: What news did the mother hear? What list did she make? Why did she start ringing up all those people?
V. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON THE TOPIC
It’s Interesting to Know
Some people say they don’t want to have a telephone. Listen to the following stories and say why they take a dislike for the telephone.
5.1. On Not Answering the Telephone
If, at the end of the conversation, somebody says to me, “As soon as I know, I’ll ring you up,” he is taking too much for granted. He is proposing to attempt the impossible. So I have to say, “I’m afraid you can’t. You see, I’m not on the telephone. I just haven’t got a telephone.”
Reactions to this are various. Some people say: ”Oh, but you must have a telephone!” as if they thought I had mislaid it somewhere, or forgotten about it. Some people say: “How terribly inconvenient! How can you do without a telephone?” and some say: “Oh, you wise man. How I envy you!” But the usual reaction is astonishment, and although I regard myself as a quiet, conventional sort of character, I find myself stared at as a wild or wilful eccentric, especially when somebody says, “Well, if I can’t ring you up, perhaps you’ll ring me up,” and I reply, ”Perhaps, but I’m more likely to write to you.”
Why don’t I have a telephone? Not because I pretend to be wise or pose as unusual. There are two chief reasons: because I don’t really like the telephone, because I find I can still work and play, eat, breathe, and sleep without it. Why don’t I like the telephone? Because I think it is a pest and a time-waster.
If you have a telephone in your own house, you will admit that it tends to ring when you least want it to ring – when you are asleep, or in the middle of a meal or conversation, or when you are just going out or when you are in your bath. Suppose that you ignore the telephone when it rings and somebody has an important message for you. I can assure you that if a message is really important it will reach you sooner or later.
But you will say, isn’t it important to have a telephone in case of sudden emergency – illness, accident or fire? Of course you are right, but one is seldom far from a telephone in case of dreadful necessity. All the same, I felt an instant sympathy with a well-known actor whom I heard on the radio the other day. He was asked: ”Suppose you were left alone to live on a desert island, and you were allowed to take just one luxury with you, what would you choose?” “I would take a telephone,” he said, “and I would push the wire into the sand, and my greatest pleasure would be to sit and look at it, and to think “It will never ring, and I shall never have to answer it.”
5.2. An Untimely Call
I was having my bath next morning when a telephone call dragged me out of it, and with a towel round my wet body I took up the receiver. It was Janet.
“Well, what do you think of it all?” she said. “You seem to have kept Charlie very late last night. I heard him come home at three.”
“He left me at Marylehone Road,” I answered. “He said nothing to me at all.”
“Didn’t he?” There was something in Janet’s voice that suggested that she was prepared to have a long talk with me. I suspected she had a telephone by the side of her bed.
“Look here,” I said quickly, “I’m having my bath.”
“Oh, have you got a telephone in your bathroom?” she answered eagerly, and I think with envy.
“No, I haven’t.” I was abrupt and firm. “And I’m dripping all over the carpet.”
“Oh!” I felt disappointment in her tone and a trace of irritation. “Well, when can I see you? Can you come here at twelve?”
It was inconvenient, but I was not prepared to start an argument.
I rang off before she could say anything more.
Exercise 1. Group together all the advantages of the telephone.
Exercise 2. Group together all the disadvantages of the telephone (if any at all).
Exercise 3. Imagine that one of you is for the telephone (a) and the other is against it (b). Refer to the facts of the texts and use the following arguments:
(a) It is so convenient. It saves a lot of your time, I can’t do without a telephone. Suppose somebody has an important message for you. It is so important to have a telephone in case of sudden emergency – illness, accident or fire. A telephone isn’t a luxury, it has become a necessity …
(b) I’m not on the telephone. You’re a wise man not to have it – I envy you. It’s a pest. It’s a time-waster. I can work and play, eat, breathe and sleep without it. It tends to ring when you least want it to ring – when you are asleep, or in the middle of a meal, or conversation , or when you are just going out or when you are in your bath. It is such a nuisance.
Exercise 4. Make up a short story about an untimely telephone call. Begin your story with the following words:
The piercing sound of the telephone woke me up in the dead of night …
I was just on the point of locking the door when I heard my telephone ring …
Paul was simply dying of hunger. And when he raised his first spoonful of soup, the telephone started ringing.
I was listening to my favourite Fifth Symphony by Tchaikovsky over the radio when my mother entered the room and told me I was wanted on the phone… .
Exercise 5. Listen to the story and try to imagine what the wife told her husband about the call:
He had been awakened that morning by the ringing telephone, and lay sleepily in bed listening to Rachel’s voice talking to someone. “But darling!” her voice had cried over the telephone. “What are you doing here? Come over at once. Mind? Of course not! We’ll love it! In two hours? Good!”
Exercise 6. Listen to the story and then answer some questions.
Walter S. was pleasantly surprised to see his teenage daughter answer the telephone and then hang up after talking for only 20 minutes instead of the usual hour. He congratulated his daughter for keeping the conversation so brief and asked her which of her friends had cooperated. “This wasn’t a friend,” she said. It was a wrong number.”
Questions: Did you expect such an end? Was the girl a good mixer and a chatter-box ? Could you have a long chat with a wrong number?
A very ingenious device to have not so recently appeared goes under the name of Ansafone. It’s chief task is to answer the phone in the absence of people and to record messages.
When a call is received and the person called happens to be out of the house, the phone plays back the greeting message and records the caller’s message. The fixed greeting message installed on the mashine is: “Hello. I cannot receive call. Please leave your message after beep tone. Thank you.” You can record your own greeting message which will precede the messages left to you. As the caller replaces the receiver the Ansafone automatically switches itself off. In order not to exceed the machine’s recording capacity it is recommended to erasw unnecessary messages after each playback.
Exercise 1. Answer the given questions about the text:
What is an Ansafone?
What is its chief task?
What does the machine reply when you dial the number?
When does the machine switch itself off?
How many messages can the automatic machine take down?
What does the owner do when he wants to know if there are any messages on the Ansafone?
Exercise 2. Speak about the advantages of having an ansafone.
Exercise 3. Think about the disadvantages of having an ansafone. Get ready to speak on them.
Exercise 4. Read the following passage and choose the correct answer (A, B, C or D) below.
I have a friend called Stephen, who is a prisoner of the call-waiting device he has had installed on his phone. “I get this beeping sound to tell me there’s another call on the line, but I never bring myself to interrupt the person I’m talking to. So I end up not concentrating on what the first person’s saying, while at the same time annoying the person who’s trying to get through”.
How does Stephen feel about his call-waiting equipment?
He gets annoyed when it interrupts him.
He is unable to use it effectively.
He finds it a relief from long conversations.
He doesn’t think it works properly.
5.4. Renting a House
This text gives you some idea about the possible misunderstanding between British and American speakers. Listen to it and study the vocabulary notes.
The telephone rings in a house in the London suburb of Twickenham.
An American Voice: Good morning. Is this Mrs Jones?
Mrs Jones (rather puzzled): I’m Mrs Jones.
American: Oh, fine. I’m Drusilla Applebee, and I’m calling about your house you advertised to rent for the summer months.
Mrs. Jones (still rather puzzled): Why yes, when are you going to call?
Mrs Applebee: I mean I’m calling you about it right now. We’re a large family and your house sounded the sort of place we need for July, August and September.
Mrs Jones: Oh, yes, of course. How many are you in your family?
Mrs Applebee: Six, so we hope you have plenty of closets.
Mrs. Jones: Er – oh, you mean what we call cupboards! Yes, we’ve got plenty of those. And lots of chests of drawers too.
Mrs Applebee: Chest of drawers …?
Mrs Jones: Oh, I should have remembered – the American term is “dresser”, isn’t it?
Switchboard operator (in strong American voice): Are you through?
Mrs Jones: Oh, yes, I’m through.
Mrs Applebee (simultaneously): No, no, we’re not through yet. I’m speaking from my husband’s office and they’re all Americans here. Gosh, I’d no idea the British were so different about languages. What do you mean when you say you’re through? We mean we’re finished with the call.
Mrs Jones: Oh, dear, we mean we’ve been “put through”, we’re connected! Perhaps you’d like to come and see the house and then we needn’t misunderstand each other quite so much.
Mrs Applebee: I should love to see your house, but I’ve no car right now. Can I get to you easily some other way? I’m in Church Street.
Mrs Jones: You can take a 27 bus to the Twickenham round-about, then use the subway right there… .
Mrs Applebee: Excuse me, I didn’t know the subway went to Twickenham.
Mrs Jones: Oh, of course, my fault. The underground doesn’t go to Twickenham. I just meant when you get off the bus you take the passage under the road and when you come up the other side our house is at the end of Aldridge Avenue, opposite. How soon would you like to come?
Mrs Applebee: Is three o’clock today OK?
Mrs Jones: Fine, I’ll expect you.
N o t e s
Is this Mrs Jones? Americans begin a telephone call by asking, “Is this …?” whereas the English ask, “Is that …”
To call in British English more often means to come in person, though it can have the sense of “calling up” or “ringing up” on the telephone which is always the American meaning.
To rent: houses in England are usually said to be “to let”. The distinction is that you let your house to someone, but you rent a house from someone.
Right now: an English person would probably just say “now” or “at the moment”.
Closet is rarely used in England and would generally be taken to refer to “water-closet”.
Gosh! – an exclamation of extreme surprise.
Exercise 1. Answer the following questions about the conversation:
Why did Mrs Jones speak in a puzzled manner from the very start of the conversation ?
What was the purpose of the telephone call Mrs Applebee was making?
Was Mrs Applebee making a call from a public box?
What did she mean when she spoke about plenty of closets ?
What did Mrs Jones mean when she answered the operator that she was through?
What did Mrs Applebee mean when she said she was not through?
What kind of misunderstanding did the two women have about the word “subway”?
What other cases of misunderstanding can you find?
Exercise 2. Get ready to speak about the Anglo-American misunderstandings.
5.5. Second-Hand Noise
Last summer а German businessman became one of Europe's first victims of mobile-phone rage. Не infuriated fellow drinkers in а Hamburg beer garden by refusing to turn his mobile phone off; а fight broke out and the compulsive communicator was clubbed to death with а beer bottle. “It was really loud”, one witness told the police, “and had one of those terrible melodies too”.
Clubbing somebody to death is а little extreme. But there is nо doubt that mobile phones have taken their place among the world’s great irritations. Their biggest sin is to have introduced telephone conversations into places that have previously been free of them, blurring the boundary between public and private life. Try reading а book on а train these days, for example, and you are invariably interrupted by some mobile bore telling the airwaves that he is on а train. Mobile phones have become а hazard even in the theatre. "Tell them we’rе busy," the actor Kevin Spacey told the owner of а ringing mobile during а London performance of “The Iсеman Cometh”.
Mobile phones are at once alienating and intrusive. They encourage people to abstract themselves from their immediate environment, interacting with unseen interlocutors instead. And they force everyone else to listen to one half of а (frequently inane) conversation. This is made worse by the two iron laws of telephony. The first is that а phone call invariably trumps face-to-face interaction, so that even polite people will abandon а conversation to answer а phone. The second is that mоbile-phone conversations know only one mode: fortissimo.
What can be done? London clubs forbid the use of mobile phones except in special phone booths. Gordon Ramsay, an acclaimed British chef and owner of а London restaurant bearing his namе, asks his customers to leave their phones at the front desk, though he will take calls for them if necessary. The Hampton Jitney, a bus that shuttles New York’s gilded elite from the city to Long Island, limits passengers to three minutes on their cellphones. If they go on for longer, tempers soon flare.
Technology is also coming to the rescue of cellphone haters. NetLine Technologies, an Israeli company, is selling a device called a c-Guard, which disables mobile phones by using low-level radio signals to block communications between handsets and their base stations. The device is apparently perfect for concert halls, theatres and churches. MAZ Hamburg, a German engineering company, has invented a Mobifinder, which can locate mobile phones within a 50-metre range to help enforce bans in places such as hospitals. Engineers for Britain’s Chiltern Railways have devised phone-proof railway carriages by covering the windows with a metallic microfilm impervious to radio waves.
Some telephone companies, keen to prevent a backlash, are now urging their customers to be more mindful of others. Omnipoint, one of America's biggest GSM operators, has produced an excellent little book on wireless etiquette. SBC Communications, which owns both Cellular One and Pacific Bell, has launched a campaign to promote cellphone etiquette. It has also commissioned Peggy Post, great-granddaughter in-law of Emily Post, the grande dame of American manners, to draw up some rules of good behaviour.
Mobile-phone companies hope that users are likely to become more considerate as phones become everyday items. They also point out that technology is on the side of good manners. High quality digital phones make shouting unnecessary. Many phones can be set to vibrate rather than ring. The growing fashion for mobile data transmission means that more people will use their phones in silence.
But a visit to one of the world’s most advanced mobile-phone markets - Hong Kong - is not reassuring. The first thing that people do when they sit down to dinner is to put their mobile phones on the table. Throughout the meal, they compete with each other to see who can make and receive the most calls. And when they do speak to each other, it is often to discuss the relative merits of different mobile phones.
Why does the text say that mobile phones have become one of the world’s great irritations?
What is alienating and intrusive about mobile phones?
What restrictions are imposed in Britain and the USA on the use of mobile phones?
Whose side – cellphones lovers or haters – is technology on? Why?
Are books on wireless etiquette necessary nowadays? Why?
What can be done to reduce the irritability of cellphones?
Is the author of the text optimistic about the future of cellphones?
VI. ROLE PLAY
This activity requires that you should act out different sorts of telephone conversation. Remember to use the vocabulary you have learnt.
1. Act out the following scene.
Situation: A businessman telephones his office in London.
Roles: 1. An English businessman on a reconnaissance trip in Russia.
2. The head of the British firm.
Review/ Formal/ Informal
Attitude: Businesslike, calm, persuasive
Description of situation.
Role I. Mr. Jackson, representative of a British firm with a considerable reputation has been sent on a reconnaissance trip to Russia to see what arrangement can be made to realize the firm’s project of cooperation with a Russian tourist firm arranging inclusive tours to Great Britain.
Mr. Jackson telephoned his office in London to report the results of his trip. He tries to dial direct but fails and has to call through the international operator in Moscow. The connection is poor and Mr. Johnson has considerable difficulty in the talk: he is cut off, the line is bad, from time to time he hears scraps of other telephone conversations. But in the long run he manages to give the head of his company a detailed account of his deeds.
Role II. Mr Carlton, the head of a well known firm arranging inclusive tours to Russia gets a call from his representative, who has been sent on a reconnaissance trip to Russia. His secretary connects him but the line is bad, the talk is interrupted several times because Mr. Jackson is cut off, from time to time they hear scraps of other conversations. Mr. Carlton is interested in the details of the trip and the results of his representative’s deeds. He sounds approving and seems to be pleased.
2. Act out the following scene.
Situation: A student from Russia is taking a course in one of the colleges of London university. On New-Year’s eve he makes a call to his parents to wish them a happy New Year and tell them how he is getting on. It’s his first experience in making a call from a public box. He has a number of problems.
Roles: I. Sergei Panov, a Russian student taking a course at London university.
II. Sergei’s father.
Attitudes: friendly, cordial.
Description of situation:
Role I. Sergei Panov, a Russian student taking a course at London university makes up his mind to make a call to his parents to wish them a Happy New Year. It’s his first experience in making a call from a public box, he reads the introduction and decides to dial direct. After a number of attempts (the line is busy, the coin wouldn’t go in as it is battered, he is a bit slow dialling) he gets through. The line is good first, he greets his father who has answered the call, asks how they are getting on, and tells his father about his studies and new experiences at London university. He wishes his parents a happy New Year and promises to telephone again soon. But at this time he is cut off suddenly. He repeats the call and tells his father about the problems he has had with the call. The public boxes are such a nuisance!
Role II. Sergei’s father hears the telephone ring and he hurries to answer it as he thinks it must be from his son. He is happy to hear that all is going well and that his son is doing well at London University. He is interested to know what his son’s new experiences at the university are. He tells his son how things are at home (in the family), wishes him a happy New Year. The call is cut off unexpectedly and then the father answers the repeated call and asks the son about the problems he has had about making the call from a public box.
3. Act out the following scene.
Situation: A hotel guest orders an operater-assisted talk from his room to Moscow.
Roles: I. Hotel guest in Washington, Mr. Brown.
II. International operator.
III. Mr.Graheg, head of the firm carrying out negotiations in Moscow.
Attitude: Businesslike, polite
Description of situation: The hotel guest who is staying at a small hotel in Washington makes a call to Moscow to discuss business with the head of his company who is in Moscow. He is carrying out negotiations with a Russian book-publishing firm.
Role I. The guest makes a call and asks the operator if he can order a call to Moscow right away. The operator tells the guest there may be a 2 hours’ delay because the line is busy. The call is urgent, so the guest asks the operator to do something to advance it. The operator promises to call back as soon as the line is free. The guest has nothing to do but accept the offer. He’s ready to wait. He asks the operator about the time difference and it turns out that the delay is for the better. Mr. Graham is more likely to be in at this time. The guest rings off and an hour later the operator calls back. The guest is connected but the line is very bad, so he has to ask the operator to help him. Finally the talk goes on without happenings and interruptions. The guest tells Mr. Graham about a business proposal of a rival firm to cooperate and share the expences in the book-publishing business in Moscow. Mr. Graham thinks the proposal worth considering.
Role II. The operator at the hotel gets a call from room 432. The guest wants to order a call to Moscow. But there’s a 2 hours’ delay because the line is very busy. The operator offers to call back as soon as the line is free. She also explains to Mr. Brown the time difference between Washington and Moscow. The operator calls back and the call is put through but the line is bad and the operator has to help.
Role III. Mr. Graham gets a call, greets Mr. Brown asks him what has happened. Mr. Graham is informed that a rival firm has made an interesting business proposal. He wonders if the proposal is genuine and says it’s worth considering.
4. Act out the following scene.
Situation: Joan gives a ring to Charles to find out something about hotels in Brighton. Her family thinks of spending their holiday at the seaside.
Roles: I. Joan
Attitude: Friendly, genuine
Description of situation.
Role I: Joan has read an advertisement in the newspaper saying that there is a hotel in Brighton that is right on the beach and that’s very essential for their family because the kids are interested in scrabbling (копаться) in the sand and popping into the sea every five minutes.
Besides all the rooms have balconies facing the sea and overlooking the beach so it would be possible for Joan’s mother to keep an eye on the children an have a quiet snooze (a short sleep) at the same time. And the prices are a bit lower than in any of the other adverts. Joan makes a call to Charles who is accustomed to spending his holidays in Brighton. But he does not know much about the hotels because he always takes a tent but he remembers that his neighbours, the Crofts, have been there many times, and have put up at the same hotel. He promises to find out things and if they know something useful he hopes he can get one of them to give Joan a ring.
Role II. Charles lifts the receiver and identifies himself. He asks how Joan is and tells her that things have not been bad. When asked if he knows about hotels in Brighton, he says he can’t be of much help because he has always taken a tent. He tells Joan to have a look at adverts. She explains what she has read in the Sunday paper. Charles is interested in the details of the advert. It seems the advert sounds too good to be true but he advises Joan to take a risk. Then he remembers that his neighbours might be of help because they have been to Brighton many times and might know something about hotels there. He promises to get one of them to give Joan a call in case they do know something that might be of use to her.
VII. FOLLOW UP DISCUSSION
Talk to your partner about the telephone services in this country.
Tell your partner about the telephone services in Britain.
Exchange your experience in making telephone calls
Exchange your experience in making trunk-calls.
Tell your partner about the telephone services in hotels
Speak about your experience in booking (tickets to the theatre, railway tickets) by phone.
Tell your partner about any untimely call you have had.
Describe an occasion when you found yourself in a very embarrassing situation when you mistook somebody for your friend speaking over the telephone.
II. Express your opinion on the following topics:
A telephone is a blessing and not a time-waster as some people think.
The telephone, as well as the radio and television, has become a necessity in our life.
The telephone is a luxury.
Automatic long-distance connections are very convenient.
The telephone has no future.
A poor connection often leads to misunderstanding or embarrassing situations.
The instructions in public boxes are very difficult to follow, therefore, to make a call is not an easy mater.
The telephone is of great help if you want to play a practical joke on someone.
Untimely calls are a nuisance.
We shouldn’t speak over the phone for hours.
Ansafones and call-waiting devices are a very useful invention.
When telephoning you should always come to the point at once.
Mobile phones make a big fashion statement.
Mobile phones have more disadvantages than advantages.
Mobile phones are alienating and intrusive.
Technology is on the side of good manners.
Mobile phone combines the functions of the telephone, the portable computer, the radio, the Hi-Fi set and the video camera.
Курятникова Э.Г. Учебные материалы по теме “Телефон” ждя студентов II курса отделения английского языка”. ПФ, Нижний Новгород
B. Jean Naterop, Rod Revell “Telephoning in English” RELOD by arr with CUP, 1993
Учебные материалы по теме “Телефон” для студентов II курса переводческого факультета
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