Tara: How is your presentation coming along?
Stan: It’s okay, but I’m having trouble simplifying some of the key concepts
without dumbing them down too much.
Tara: I think your instincts are right. You’ll be presenting to non-specialists, so
it’s important to keep your presentation clear and simple.
Stan: That’s my problem. How do I capture the essence of all of this information
without making it too simplistic?
Tara: My rule of thumb is to think about which concepts really jump out at me
when I think about the topic and identify any patterns in the information. Then, I
build my presentations around those things.
Stan: That’s a good idea.
Tara: I would also find a non-specialist and do a run-through and get his or her
feedback. That’s the best way to know if you’ve nailed it.
Stan: That’s another good idea. What do I owe you for all of this good advice?
Tara: There’s a new restaurant across the street I’ve been meaning to try for
Stan: Say no more. Lunch is on me.
Tara: Really? Let’s go right now before you change your mind!
[end of dialog]
Lucinda: You look tired. Are you all right?
Elan: I’m fine. It’s this clinical trial I’m enrolled in. I’m suffering from some side
Lucinda: Are they serious?
Elan: No, they’re not too bad. I was told to expect some adverse reactions in the
first weeks of the pilot study. I guess that’s why only a small group of volunteers
is taking part right now. It’s so they can judge the drug’s effectiveness before the
pharmaceutical company does a large-scale trial.
Lucinda: At least you know you’re not in the group getting a placebo.
Elan: Who knows? I hope not. If I successfully get through this first phase, I’ll
get a full dose of the drug in phase two.
Lucinda: Then you may once and for all be rid of Podcaster’s Disease.
Elan: I really hope so. No one should go through life sounding like a podcaster.
When I first met Lance, I thought he was the perfect guy. He was a real
gentleman. He opened doors for me and pulled out my chair in restaurants. He
was as chivalrous as they come. But after a while, I realized that he took chivalry
a little too far.
Lance: Let me carry that box for you.
Guinevere: No, that’s okay. It’s not heavy.
Lance: It doesn’t matter. I’m your boyfriend and I can’t have you carrying a box
when my hands are free.
Guinevere: Is that some kind of code of conduct I don’t know about?
Lance: It’s how a knight would treat his lady.
Guinevere: That’s nice, but I’m perfectly capable of carrying my own box, thank
Lance: Don’t argue. It’s my duty to show every courtesy to my girlfriend, so give
me that box.
Guinevere: Are you saying that your code of conduct takes precedence over my
Lance: No, I’m just telling you that my job is to help and protect you, even if it’s
against your will.
How can you argue with that logic?
[end of story]
[start of story]
Every afternoon before I leave work, I listen to the traffic report to see if I should
take my usual route home or make a detour. So today, like every day, I turned
on my radio.
“It’s a tough commute today if you’re traveling on I-35 north. There’s a major
slowdown due to an overturned big rig that’s blocking the number two lane.”
Oh no. That meant that I had to take the 40W instead.
“If you’re traveling on the 40W, you’ll find a lot of congestion. It’s down to one
lane because of a pileup. Emergency vehicles are responding.”
Wow, that meant I might have to take surface streets all the way home.
“And if you’re thinking of taking Broadway Boulevard west from downtown, think
again. There is a stalled vehicle blocking the right lane and construction all the
way to Main Street.”
Well, I was in a no-win situation. Do I want to spend two hours in gridlock or two
more hours at work?
[end of story]
[start of dialog]
Danielle: I’m so excited! I just got my new posting overseas. I can’t wait to live
abroad and work as an expat.
Angus: I remember my first overseas assignment. It was interesting, but the
adjustment took some time.
Danielle: I won’t have any problems. I already have my work permit and
vaccinations, and I speak the language fairly well. And remember, I don’t have
any family to relocate.
Angus: I didn’t think I’d have any problems either, but when I got to
McQuillanland, I was in culture shock.
Danielle: I’m ready for the differences in the cost of living. I’ll be getting a
housing allowance, which will offset the increase in living expenses.
Angus: I wasn’t thinking so much about the expense of living abroad. I was
referring to a different pace of life and the many cultural differences that affect
every facet of life.
Danielle: That’s what I’m looking forward to. It’ll all be so exciting.
Angus: I’m glad you’re in euphoria right now, but be prepared for some bumps in
Danielle: No problem. To me, smooth sailing would be boring!
[end of dialog]
[start of dialog]
Yves: Help me fill out this application for our marriage license.
Vanessa: Can’t you do it? I’m really busy with work right now. Do as much as
you can and ask me if you don’t know something.
Yves: Okay, I’ll try, but I’m reading through the requirements, and it’s a good
idea for both of us to know what they are.
Vanessa: Okay, then just read them out loud to me.
Yves: All right. We need to bring identification and it’s best to bring our birth
certificates, just in case. We don’t need blood tests and there’s no waiting period
in this state. Are you listening?
Vanessa: To every word. Go on.
Yves: For people who have been married before, they’ll have to bring proof of
divorce, death, or annulment. Okay, since you’ve been married before, you’ll
need to bring a copy of your final divorce decree. Did you hear that?
Vanessa: Yeah, yeah.
Yves: We can choose any qualified officiant and the marriage license is valid for
90 days – that’s 90 days to get married and have the marriage recorded. We
only have 90 days after we get the license to get married, got that?
Vanessa: Sure, 90 days. No problem.
Yves: I’m starting to wonder. If you don’t have time to fill out our marriage
license application, how will you make time for our wedding?
Vanessa: What? I’m really busy right now. Let’s talk about it later.
Yves: Is it just me, or does this conversation not bode well for our future
[end of dialog]
[start of dialog]
Nancy: So, what do you think?
Ron: Uh, that was interesting.
Nancy: That’s all you have to say? I spent six months making this anti-drug film
to show students in schools to try and deter illegal drug use.
Ron: Well, I’m not sure if it gets the point across.
Nancy: What do you mean? I show footage of people using hardcore drugs.
Ron: That’s just it. You start by showing people smoking pot, making the point
that it’s a gateway drug, and then showing addicts popping pills, shooting up
heroine, and snorting and freebasing cocaine.
Nancy: I’m trying to show the downhill spiral that results from illegal drug use.
Ron: But considering how incredibly explicit the film is, I’m afraid that teachers
might mistake it for some other type of film.
Nancy: What do you mean? What type of film?
Ron: Well, instead of an anti-drug educational film, it seems more instructional.
If kids didn’t know how to use illegal drugs before, they will after watching this
[start of dialog]
Chuck: Just remember that we have a lot to accomplish today, so let’s just get
what we need and go, okay?
Ayaka: Sure, we just need a few tools for our DIY project. The power tools are
Chuck: Whoa, we’re not getting power tools. We just need a few simple hand
tools: a hammer, a wrench, a chisel, some pliers – and maybe an extra
screwdriver or two.
Ayaka: We would get the job done so much more quickly if we had power tools.
Instead of a hammer, we should get a nail gun. We also need a power drill, and
hey, a sander and a table saw.
Chuck: A table saw?! We’re doing some simple repairs, not remodeling our
Ayaka: You never know when you need a good saw and I’ve always wanted a
Chuck: Other women want clothes and jewelry, and you want power tools?
Ayaka: That’s right. You should be counting your lucky stars!
Andy: What are you doing?
Sita: I’m running some numbers for the new project.
Andy: I thought that was Delia’s turf.
Sita: She’s usually the go-to person for this type of information, but I need this
info right now.
Andy: I’d be careful about stepping on Delia’s toes. She doesn’t take kindly to
people encroaching on her responsibilities.
Sita: I know she can be territorial at times, but I’m sure if I explain to her why I’m
getting this information right this minute, she’d understand.
Andy: Okay, but don’t be surprised if she thinks you’re trying to gain control of
her little fiefdom. She’s really entrenched and she doesn’t like anyone muscling
Sita: Do you really think she’ll misunderstand my motives?
Andy: I wouldn’t take any chances. Hurry up and finish what you’re doing, cover
your tracks, and get out. With any luck, she won’t think this is the beginning of a
Kindo: What’s that?
Nookie: It’s my new e-book reader. I’m just downloading some new books onto it.
Kindo: I haven’t bought one yet. I’m old school. I still prefer a printed book.
Nookie: But if you haven’t tried it yet, how do you know you wouldn’t like it
better? This e-book reader can store over 10,000 digital books and it’s easily
portable. Imagine trying to carry an entire library from place to place.
Kindo: I don’t usually read 10,000 books all at once and I hear that there are a lot
of incompatible formats out there. Each company is trying to edge out the others
by establishing their format as the format. I think I’ll just wait until the dust settles.
Nookie: The different formats aren’t that big a deal. You can easily convert a
book in one format to another.
Kindo: I like the look of text on a printed page.
Nookie: You mean that faded text on that yellowed page? On an e-book reader,
you can adjust the text size, font, and even line spacing.
Kindo: Can I get all of the out-of-print books on my shelves in digital format?
Nookie: Well, I’m not sure.
Kindo: Until I can, I’ll stick to my low-tech books.