BBC Learning English: The English We Speak – Dinosaur: When we call someone a ‘dinosaur’, we mean they’re living in the past, they’re not very modern, and probably don’t use a lot of technology.
Helen is shocked when she hears about people described as ‘dinosaurs’. Listen to the programme to learn what this slang expression means.
Helen: Hello, Welcome to The English We Speak from BBC Learning English. I’m Helen.
Rob: And I’m Rob.
Helen: Rob, can I ask you something?
Rob: Yes, of course. Go ahead.
Helen: My son’s friends came to visit at the weekend. They were all in the bedroom playing with dinosaurs.
Rob: Oh right. Sounds fun.
Helen: Yeah, I even let them watch a dinosaur film and play a computer game. Then I heard one of them say his parents were dinosaurs.
Rob: Oh, dear.
Helen: I’m a mum, I don’t think I look anything like a dinosaur, do I?
Rob: No, you don’t look like one at all. You are 100% human! What did the boy say about his parents?
Helen: He said that they don’t have a TV at home, and that his parents don’t have mobile phones either. I was quite surprised by that.
Rob: No wonder he thinks his parents are dinosaurs. When we call someone a ‘dinosaur’, we mean they’re living in the past, they’re not very modern, and probably don’t use a lot of technology.
Helen: I see. So, if I don’t have a mobile phone or have a computer, I could be… a dinosaur.
Rob: Exactly. Let’s hear some examples.
- My grandfather just bought his first digital camera. I’ve been telling him to get one for years! He’s a dinosaur when it comes to modern technology.
- A: Have you met Jane’s new husband?
B: Yes, he talks like someone from the 1930s. Really old-fashioned!
A: I know, he said he hates modern technology.
B: Oh, he’s such a dinosaur.
Helen: So calling someone a dinosaur means they’re not in touch with the modern world.
Rob: Yes, a bit old-fashioned, maybe conservative in their thinking, and not keen for new challenges.
Helen: Well, I love modern technology.
Rob: Are you on Facebook? Twitter? Instagram?
Helen: No, what are these?
Rob: Oh dear, Helen! You really are a dinosaur!
The English We Speak – Dinosaur Transcript Video
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