In this programme, we look at language used to express annoyance or anger about something.
There are all sorts of very strong words in English used to show annoyance (some of which you probably already know!), but we’ll be focusing on those expressions which aren’t quite so offensive, so you don’t find yourself upsetting people too much!
|Expressions for showing annoyance|
God’s (some people may find this offensive)
Jackie: Hello, welcome to How to… with bbclearningenglish.com. I’m Jackie Dalton. In this programme we’ll look at how to express anger and annoyance about something. Of course, there are all sorts of very strong words in English used to show annoyance (some of which you probably already know!), but we’ll be focusing on those expressions which aren’t quite so offensive, so you don’t find yourself upsetting people! Let’s hear our first one.
I’m at a party drinking a glass of wine but then (smash!)
Clip: Oh no!
Jackie: I drop my glass… ‘Oh no!’ A simple reaction you can use in all kinds of situations when something bad has happened.
Clip: Oh no!
Jackie: You could also say ‘Oh dear!’ this means the same thing.
Clip: Oh dear!
Jackie: Let’s hear those words in sentences with other expressions…
Clip: Oh dear! He missed his plane!
Oh no! I can’t believe I’ve just done that! Oh dear! I don’t believe he’s forgotten again!
Jackie: In those last sentences we heard another expression worth knowing. ‘I can’t believe…’ or ‘I don’t believe…’ again, a popular phrase when something bad has just happened.
Clip: Oh no, I can’t believe I’ve just done that!
Oh dear! I don’t believe he’s forgotten again! Oh, I can’t believe it! I can’t believe that this is happening again! Oh, I can’t believe I’ve just done that!
Jackie: So those were our first three expressions: ‘Oh no!’ ‘Oh dear!’ And ‘I can’t believe it!’ Here’s one you might use if something has gone wrong and it’s happened to you before.
Clip: Why does this always happen to me!
Jackie: ‘Why does this always happen!’ Here are some more examples.
Clip: I’ve lost my keys. Why does this always happen to me! They missed the train – why does that always happen!
Jackie: Listen to this clip of an angry boss. What expression does he start with to show he’s annoyed?
Clip: I mean, for goodness sake, he’d said he’d do it and now he hasn’t done it, so…that’s just typical!
Jackie: For goodness sake! Something to say when you’re annoyed!
Clip: – He said he can’t help us! – Oh for goodness sake!
Jackie: A variation on this is ‘for heaven’s sake!’
Clip: Oh! For heaven’s sake! Why is she so unreliable?
Jackie: One more handy and not too offensive expression is ‘Bother!’
Clip: Isn’t he coming to the party? Oh bother, I forgot to invite him!
Jackie: A word that you might hear in similar contexts, but which some people might find a bit offensive is ‘damn!’
Clip: Damn! I’ve forgotten my car keys! Oh damn, they’ve cancelled the flight!
Jackie: Again, this is only for informal situations and some people might be a bit offended by the word, so do be careful about how you use it. Let’s do a summary of those expressions. Listen closely and try to remember as many as you can.
I can’t believe it!
Why does this always happen!
For goodness sake!
For heaven’s sake!
Damn (with caution!)!
BBC How to… show annoyance Transcript Video
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