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英语练功房

Challenge both your English & minds

 
 
 

日志

 
 

1203  

2012-12-03 09:27:37|  分类: Lectures |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Part 1

 

SHE has blood red _____ [lip] , a perfectly styled bob (波波头) and a crazy wardrobe (行头). Some have even compared her to US singer Lady Gaga because of her wild fashion sense. But after listening to her music, it’s clear _____ 24-year-old British star Jessie J stands alone.

Jessie is making an impact not just because of her style but also because of her voice.

The R&B singer, _____signature (
标志性的) low and high tones blow people away, has just been nominated (提名) for the Best UK Female Artist award at this year’s MOBOs (music of black origin) Awards in Britain. These awards celebrate black music and culture.

Her nomination comes as no surprise.

Thanks _____ her hit single Price Tag, which went to number 1 in the charts in ten different countries last year, people have _____[final]started to notice Jessie.
She released her successful debut (
首张) album Who You Are shortly after Price Tag made its mark. The album showcased (展示) the skills of the gifted lyricist who has been _____  an unforgettable journey to stardom.

Jessie grew up _____ the youngest of three children. While her elder sisters excelled academically, Jessie struggled at school, channeling all her ambition into performing.

_____ she had been less committed, her hopes for a singing career would have faded.

When she was a kid, Jessie suffered from heart problems. She had to take lots of pills to keep her heartbeat _____ control, but the medication left her skin green, _____[make]  her vulnerable (
易受攻击的) to bullies (欺凌弱小者).

_____ was being around children in hospital who were sicker than her that made Jessie realize how lucky she was and gave her the strength to make the most of life.

At 17, Jessie wrote her first song Big White Room. The song was inspired by real life events – specifically the time she was hospitalized at 11 while _____[share]  a room with a younger boy who sadly lost his life. The song remains a YouTube favorite.

Jessie’s lyrics are always touching and skillfully _____[write] . Before turning into an international pop star and celebrated judge of The Voice UK, Jessie wrote hit songs for many famous singers such as Rihanna and Miley Cyrus.

At the same time Jessie has been working on her vocal (
嗓音的) performance in the past few years, hoping that people won’t think it is “crap (糟糕的)”.

“Ever since I was a kid, I _____[teach]  that you have to be good at what you do. If you’re a masseuse (
女按摩师), you should know _____ to do to make someone’s back feel better. If you’re a singer you should be able to sing live,” she told Time Out London.

 

WHAT can you do with 6.3 yuan? Would this small amount of money be enough to live off for one whole day?

In China, people who earn no more than 2,300 yuan a year are classified as living below the poverty line. Their average expenditure (
花费) per day is 6.3 yuan. So, about 150 million Chinese people remain _____ poverty.

On Oct 17, the International Day for the Eradication (
根除) of Poverty, which aims to promote  _____[aware] of the need to lift people out of poverty, the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation started an online  It called on Internet users to spend 6.3 yuan or less for a day toucampaign. help more people understand what it is like to live  _____ very little money. Many people gave it a go.

Fuzhou student Zheng Kan, 17, got up early and walked to school in order to cut transportation costs, which would be 2 yuan for a return trip by bus.

He spent 2 yuan on an egg pancake for breakfast, and skipped lunch so that he would have enough money _____[leave]  to spend in a shabby (
简陋的) noodle shop.
 

RUSSIA should be top of your list of places to visit, especially after a new government deal.

On Oct 16 Russia said that it  _____[sign] an agreement with China last week. Chinese tourists on group travel are now allowed to visit Russia for up to 15 days without a visa.
 Chinese nationals on group tours also have visa-free entry  _____ Vietnam and South Korea.

 KATHMANDU, the capital of Nepal, is widely considered a mysterious (神秘的) “holy basin” and the beginning of one of the world’s most exciting trekking (远足) routes to the Himalayan mountains.

While enjoying the natural and cultural heritage (
遗产) of the city, 17-year-old Hu Yixin from Zhejiang province expressed her concerns about the urban environment. She handed in  _____ 2,000-word report _____ the city government about the city’s pollution.

“The  _____[pile] of garbage are becoming an obstacle (
障碍) _____ the development of popular travel destinations,” said the Senior 3 student from Hangzhou Foreign Language School.

“Beer cans, water bottles, instant noodle wrappers (
包装) and other waste was everywhere, especially near bus stops. Some rotten materials smelt bad and attracted flies or other insects,” she recalled, _____[sad]  by her first impression of the country. “The capital city was in a terrible state.”
 Although there were laws on garbage disposal (
处理), these rules were rarely followed because of a lack of leadership due to fighting political parties in the country. Hu and her friends suggested raising public awareness about environmental protection. Every community should also take care of their surrounding areas. Above all, the government should make _____  a priority (优先事项) to keep the city clean.

Part 2


I was very lucky to_____[select] , through audition (
试镜), to take part in a student production of Richard II, while on exchange at St. Louis.

I saw the devotion of the students here. Doing theater here, as an activity, equals any kind of sports _____ them. Richard II is a historical tragedy, so a serious and heavy atmosphere permeated (
弥漫) throughout the play. The arrogance (傲慢) and complacency (自满) of King Richard was revealed by the strong performance of the actor.

Most of the main actors in the play had participated in more than 10 stage shows, and the director, a senior student, had taken part in 12 productions throughout his four years in high school. An experienced team meant it was a very professional production. The power of Shakespeare’s language – so fluent and rhythmic when _____[speak]  – also impressed everyone.

I saw how much effort each of the other 28 players made, and we worked together in perfect harmony. Back stage, we encouraged each other before each of us went on stage. Enemies were already looking daggers (
怒目而视) at one another and characters before execution (处决) were already filled with heaviness. We were not yet performing in the play but already lost in it.

Such is the power of Shakespeare. He planted the soul of another within my heart, _____[enable]  me to feel different characters through acting.

NO. This is not a practical, long-term solution_____  our problems.

Gong Zheng: I think that the reason _____ so many people went out this year during National Day is because it was free to travel on the highways. If the government made traveling cheaper not only during the holidays, but also in daily life, then there would not be a problem.

 

HE is an important historical figure. Some 15,000 books have been written about Abraham Lincoln (1809-65). Americans have always seen him as a strong leader who held the nation together during its darkest hours.

In September 1862, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation (
《解放黑人奴隶宣言》).

So if you were asked to make a film about this famous man, the 16th president of the US, upon _____ aspect of his life would you focus?

Hollywood famous director Steven Spielberg has chosen to explore the difficult final months of Lincoln’s life, the abolition (
废除) of slavery and the end of civil war. His new movie, Lincoln, will come out in cinemas on Nov 9 in the US.

When audiences are introduced to Lincoln as he wanders (
漫步) a dark White House at night, he’s not only a president who fights for the liberation of slaves but a shrewd (精明的) politician who makes backroom deals – he is planning to hire hooligans (流氓) to rustle up (搞到) votes to help pass the 13th amendment (修正案), which aims to free the black slaves.

According to The Guardian, the movie “is unafraid to show him _____ a canny (
狡猾的) politician willing to bend the law and make enormous compromises to accomplish a greater goal”. Just as Spielberg says in the film’s trailer (预告片): “We treat him as a man, not a monument.”

 IT is one of the _____[old]  magic tricks in the book – a magician locks a woman in a box, with her head and feet sticking out from either end, and saws it in half. But when she finally jumps out of the box the woman is unharmed.

This trick was introduced nearly a century ago. _____ has been around for some time, but it never goes wrong. Why is it so successful? The answer is simple: the human mind is easily fooled.

Our brain processes the world around us based on information that sensory organs (
感官), including the eyes, pick up. For instance, when we see a cow or a horse standing behind a tree, we automatically “fill in” the part of the animal’s body that is hidden from our sight. “So the brain is taking this kind of very sparse (匮乏的) information about the world and it’s generating this rich world by filling in information,” Stephen Macknik, scientist at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Arizona, US, told Science magazine.

But since our brains are filling in the gaps, sometimes they get it wrong. They tend to _____[drive]  by your previous experiences and you expect things to go as they have in the past even if sometimes they do not.

This tendency explains magicians’ success in fooling people with well-known coin tricks. For example, when you see a magician throw a coin up and down in one hand and then fake a coin throw to the other hand, you would naturally believe that the coin is in the other hand.
 

 

WHEN I was growing up, I had an old neighbor named Doctor Gibbs. He didn’t look like any doctor I’d ever known. He never yelled _____ us for playing in his yard, but was always very kind.

When Doctor Gibbs wasn’t saving lives, he was planting trees. His house sat on ten acres of land, and his life’s goal was to turn this land _____ a forest.

The good doctor had some interesting theories about planting trees. He believed in the principle: “No pain, no gain”. He never watered his new trees, an attitude which flew in the face of conventional wisdom.

Once I asked why and he told me that watering plants spoiled _____ because it made them grow weaker. He said you have to make things tough for the trees so that only the strongest survive.

He talked about how watering trees made them develop shallow roots and how, if they were not watered, trees would grow deep roots in search of moisture (
水分).

So Doctor Gibbs would plant an oak (
橡树) and, instead of watering it every morning, he’d beat it with a rolled-up newspaper. I asked him why he did that, and he said it was to get the tree’s attention.

Doctor Gibbs died a couple of years after I left home. Every now and then, I walked _____ his house and looked at the trees that I’d watched him plant some 25 years ago. They were tall and robust (
强壮的).

I planted a couple of trees myself a few years ago. Two years of coddling (
溺爱) these trees meant they grew up weak. Whenever a cold wind blew, their branches trembled. Adversity seemed to benefit Doctor Gibb’s trees in ways comfort and ease never could.

Every night before I go to bed, I check on my two sons. I stand over them and watch their little bodies. I often pray (
祈祷) that their lives will be easy. _____ lately I’ve been thinking that it’s time to change my prayer. I know my children are going to encounter hardship. There’s always _____ cold wind blowing somewhere. What we need to do is to pray _____ deep roots, so when the rains fall and the winds blow, we won’t be torn apart.

 

Part 1

 

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Part 2

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