5 episodios

A place to learn how to use common English language idioms and phrases with a special emphasis on business, technology, and Christianity.

Phil's English Lessons Philip Hartman

    • Aprendizaje de idiomas

A place to learn how to use common English language idioms and phrases with a special emphasis on business, technology, and Christianity.

    My Joyful Noise - My Favorite Christmas Carole

    My Joyful Noise - My Favorite Christmas Carole

    I'd like to share with you my favorite Christmas Carole, "O Holy Night".

    I may not have the greatest voice but I think I heard a phrase “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord.”

    Oh holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
    It is the night of our dear Saviour's birth.
    Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
    Till He appear'd and the soul felt its worth.
    A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
    For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
    Fall on your knees! Oh, hear the angels' voices!
    Oh night divine, Oh night when Christ was born;
    Oh night divine, Oh night, Oh night Divine.

    • 1m
    My Hands Are Tied

    My Hands Are Tied

    My Hands Are Tied

    Welcome to Phil’s English, your free source of explanation of idioms used by native English speakers. This episode is brought to you by my premium English language podcast, “Idioms of Business and Technology”. This is more than just idioms but also includes tutorials and explanations of business and technology concepts. For example, what’s a supply chain? What is the difference between price and cost? What’s scalability? Reliability? Flexibility? Maintainability? So if you’re a regular listener to this podcast, I’m sure you’ll also benefit from this more focused podcast on English used in the business world or technology settings. I’m running a Christmas special. Only $1.99 per month, $9.99 simiannually, or only $15.99 per year. That’s only 30 cents per week! Go to http://premiumenglish.podbean.com/premium-signup to sign up.

    The idiom for this episode is “my hands are tied.” To understand it, put yourself in this situation. Suppose you work in a big organization and you find that an existing organizational policy or standard operating procedure is really ineffective or requires a lot of unnecessary work on your part. Or perhaps a recent decision by a high executive causes you a lot of extra work or requires you to obtain extra approvals before you can receive the resources you need to be successful. If you approach some middle manager or other person with some power in the organization to ask for a change in policy or to request an exemption from some requirement of the policy, the person in authority will often be sympathic or even agree with you. However, they will often say, “My hands are tied.” This is a way of saying that while they agree with you personally, they are bound by some higher authority than them and cannot approve the solution you have proposed. The reference is apparently the image of a prisoner tied up with ropes so that the prisoner is immobilized with his hands behind his back. The person you have asked for help has their “hands tied” and cannot assist you.

    Thanks for listening to Phi’s English. You may also be interested in my other podcast, the Art and Science of Being an I/T Architect. This focuses on my career designing software for major corporations. You can find this podcast at http://artsciita.podbean.com/ .

    This podcast is Copyright 2007 by Philip Hartman – All rights reserved.

    • 3 min
    Road Warrior

    Road Warrior

    If you have not heard the English language idiom "road warrior" before let me explain. A road warrior is a person who travels extensively and usually this means business travel. I believe I met the definition of a road warrior in 2007. I made six trips to China; probably 16 or more trips to Raleigh, North Carolina; 2 trips to California; two trips to Atlanta; and one trip to Seattle.

    This kind of working lifestyle is particularly common among marketing professionals that sell expensive products and services to major corporations, executives with oversight of many different geographic locations, or any many kinds of management or technology consultants.

    Being a road warrior has its positive and negative aspects.

    • On the positive side, just being one usually implies that your employer has a lot of trust in your abilities. This usually translates into more responsibility and higher compensation. Hotels, car rental companies, and airlines all treat you as their favorite customer. It is common to get a free upgrade to a better room, a nicer car, or a better seat. You often get to meet a lot of very intelligent and very interesting people. You often get to have long discussions with these people over dinner in the evening at nice restaurants. It is possible to grow your expertise, skills, and network of business contacts very quickly.
    • On the negative side, it is a stressful lifestyle. The greater responsibility at work usually means greater scrutiny by your boss. If you commute by airline, you have to worry about flight delays and cancellations. Constantly changing time zones can play havoc with your sleeping schedule also. The worst thing of all is the separation from family and friends.

    So if you are considering becoming a road warrior, go into it with you eyes open. It can be exciting, rewarding, and invigorating. You'll not be bored. It will also be lonely at times. Both you and your family need to be able to deal with the separation and stress.

    What’s a KPI? What’s the difference between scalability and reliability? What is a C-Level executive? What’s the difference between price and cost? The answer to these questions and even more like them can be found on my premium English language podcast “Idioms of Business and Technology” where I talk about a lot more than idioms. Subscribe at http://premiumenglish.podbean.com/ . Just click on the “Subscribe to premium content now” link at the end of a post.

    Copyright 2007 by Philip Hartman, All Rights Reserved

    • 2 min
    You've Got to Roll With the Punches

    You've Got to Roll With the Punches

    Hi and welcome to Phil's English podcast where I try to help you understand English better. In particular, I hope to help you understand the idioms native speakers commonly use.

    Today's new idiom is "You've got to roll with the punches."

    The meaning of this idiom is to accept minor setbacks and continue towards your goal. It means to minimize the pain of adverse actions by an opponent or by a competitor. You must continue competing. You must try to win next time.

    I believe the origin comes from the sport of boxing in which one fighter rolls his head away from his opponent's punch to minimize the damage of the impact.

    How would you use this idiom in the business world? For example, after a salesman has lost a big sale, a co-worker might say to him "That's just the way it is in this cut-throat business. You have to roll with the punches!" This is a way of telling his co-worker to forget about losing that sale and to go out and just keep trying to win more business.

    I hope you have enjoyed this idiom. I hope you'll return to listen again and again.

    If you listened to this podcast by visiting http://philsenglish.podomatic.com you may have noticed an ad on the right hand side for "Phil's English Coaching & Mentoring." Yes, I've started to offer private lessons in conversational, business, and technical english. I do this over the internet using Skype. If you find my podcast helpful and would like to accelerate your English learning, you can contact me for private lessons in the following ways.

    1. Click on the ad on the web page at http://philsenglish.podomatic.com
    2. In version 3.5 or later of Skype open the SkypeFind tab and search for the phrase "Phil's English" and click on the link to try to contact me via Skype.
    3. Send an email to "phils_english@hotmail.com"
    4. Look for me online on Skype with ID "philip.hartman"

    I look forward to speaking with you soon! If you've enjoyed it I hope you'll tell your friends and even consider leaving a positive review on iTunes or on your web page or blog.

    This podcast is copyright 2007 by Philip Hartman. All rights reserved.

    • 3 min
    Catholics and Protestants

    Catholics and Protestants

    I got this question in an email from one of my new friends in China who says she is not a Christian but has been attending church and feels at peace there.

    "I really got puzzled when I faced the two things "Anglo-Catholic"&"Catholic "&"Christian".Would you do me a favor to differentiate them ,or give me some advice about how to distinguish them?"

    Only about one week earlier, I had a young Chinese woman ask me "Do you think Catholics worship the same God?"

    I deduced from these two questions that there are a lot of questions about the various churches and denominations in the minds of the Chinese who are just now taking a look at the Christian faith.

    Here is my feeble attempt to explain:

    Christian - All those who believe Jesus is God's Son and that Jesus paid the price for our sin by dying on the cross for us.

    There are two major types of Christians; Catholics and Protestants.

    Catholics are Christians organized as the Roman Catholic Church. These Christians generally accept the authority of the Pope in Rome. I believe this is an issue for Chinese Catholics. The Chinese Government is uncomfortable with Chinese Catholics taking direction from the Pope in Rome and instead wants them to be autonomous. (No foreign intervention.)

    Protestants are generally Christians who are not Catholic. Protestants broke away from the Catholic church in the middle ages. Protestants
    have organized themselves into many different denominations such as Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, and Presbyterian. I suppose you could consider the Three Self Patriotic Movement in China a Protestant denomination.

    I am not sure what Anglo-Catholic means but I think it would be Catholics of European decent. In other words white-faced Catholics and not those Catholics from Africa, the Orient, and or Latin America.

    One thing I am not sure about would be Orthodox Christians such as the Greek Orthodox church or the Russian Orthodox church. They are definitely not Catholic but may not consider themselves Protestant. Perhaps I should say Christians are of three main types (Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox).

    I hope that helps.

    • 2 min

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