in tests'r'us

storyville /3/ saying grace


here are two more vignettes for you to fill and learn some great new stuff in the process. also, I guess I should explain what the glue is that holds this thing together. why have I chosen these very phrases? is there a common purpose? do they share some characteristics that we have been unable to detect?

as a matter of fact, they do and there is. when I started putting this thing together there were four separate sections, one focusing on phrasal verbs, one on idioms, one on slang or colloquial phrases and one on fixed phrases that didn’t fit into any of the other three categories. however, I soon realized that the vignettes were too good—full of wonderful phrases—to only have one gap (in other words, one highlight) in each of them. so I merged all the categories and have grinned like a Cheshire dog with a cat in its belly ever since.

the gapfills

be bullshitting – žvanit nesmysly
be taking (one’s sweet) time – dávat si sakramentsky načas
dig in – pustit se do jídla
get busy – pustit se do práce, zde: začít naplno fungovat (obchod)
in some manner – nějakým způsobem

on a whim – z náhlého popudu
one of these days – někdy brzo
out of nowhere – zničeho nic
payload – zde: náklad (množství něčeho)

rib sb – popichovat
screw st up – posrat, pokazit
sit around – posedávat a nic nedělat
sure as hell – na sto pro
to the effect of st – (říci něco) v tom smyslu, že


and here are the two stories. do your best.

saying grace

a family has gathered to eat dinner. it is customary to say a prayer before starting to eat. however, the dinner consists of frozen waffles so the father’s prayer seems to urge the Lord to send the family some good fortune so they can afford better food.

Before we eat let’s say grace. Lord, we thank you for this staggering …1… of frozen waffles that you have brought us. And since we have been faithful to you, we know that you will send us some good fortune …2…, even though you …3… seem to …4…. Amen. Ok, let’s …5….

it is customary – je zvykem
urge – naléhat na
good fortune – štěstí
can afford – moci si dovolit
say grace – pomodlit se před jídlem
staggering – ohromující
faithful – věrný
good fortune – štěstí (přízeň osudu)


free tattoo

Naomi is a girl who doesn’t consider herself very attractive. Nor do most people, apparently. One day a guy at a shop tells her he finds her beautiful. She thinks he’s putting her on and leaves. The next day she comes back to see if he was serious.

I went to the shop before it …6… and looked around at some of the drawings. The artists were …7… on a couch in the front of the store just sort of …8…, but the guy from the night before wasn’t saying much. Finally someone asked me if I was looking for anything particular. The guy from the night before had been staring at me the most and he suddenly, …9…, just says, “I’ll give you a free tattoo if you’ll be my girlfriend.” All the guys laughed at him, started …10… him and calling him pathetic, saying, “Yeah, girlfriend for a night!” and he looked hurt and looked at me and said, “No, really… marry me.” I turned red and said something …11… “I don’t know if I’ll ever get married,” which was a good answer because some guy said I was a smart girl and started teasing some other guy there who had gotten married …12… and …13… his life …14….

be putting sb on – vodit někoho za nos
drawings – kresby
sort of – tak nějak, tak trochu, jaksi
anything particular? – něco konkrétního?
stare at sb – zírat na
tattoo – tetování
pathetic – ubohý, zoufalý, trapný
turn red – zčervenat
tease – popichovat, provokovat