BBC Learning English: The English We Speak – Go the extra mile: when you tell someone to go the extra mile, you’re telling them to make more effort than usual to achieve their objectives.
Feifei has offered Finn a lift to work, but she’s having problems with her car. She needs to save money to buy a new one – and Finn tells her the best way to do it.
(Feifei is giving Finn a lift to work in her car)
Finn: Thank you for the lift to work today, Feifei.
Feifei: It’s a pleasure, Finn. But my car has got a few problems. Sometimes it makes funny noises. And I even had to call a mechanic a few times.
Finn: Yeah, it looks like quite an old car.
Feifei: Yes, it is. I’m saving money to buy a new one.
Finn: Well, maybe Feifei you should give up eating in expensive restaurants every week, and all those expensive holidays…
Feifei: But I love my holidays! And the good food, the designer clothes…
Finn: Yes, but if you want to save money you have to go the extra mile.
Feifei: The extra mile? I don’t think this old car would survive even one more mile!
Finn: I don’t mean go the extra mile in the car. I mean go the extra mile when saving money.
Feifei: How do you mean?
Finn: In English, when you tell someone to go the extra mile, you’re telling them to make more effort than usual to achieve their objectives. And that’s our phrase in this The English We Speak. Let’s listen to some examples.
- If you want to succeed in business, you have to work harder than your competitors. You’ve got to go the extra mile.
- Mary left university without a diploma. She spent all her time partying with her friends. She didn’t go the extra mile and study harder.
Feifei: Now I get it. I have to be prepared to give up things I like – to go the extra mile – to save money to buy a new car.
(The car stops)
Feifei: Oh no! Not again!
Finn: Why have you stopped?
Feifei: Well, this car has broken down again! I’ll have to ring the mechanic.
Finn: I’m sorry about that, Feifei. I don’t think this car will go any more miles, but I have a feeling you will if you kiss goodbye to the expensive dresses…
Feifei: Oh… goodbye… Oh Finn, my beautiful dresses and the cool gadgets…
Finn: Oh, the cool gadgets. Yes, those too.
Feifei: And no more fun weekends in Paris or expensive seats in the theatre…
Finn: No more real gold jewellery.
Feifei: I’m so sad. Bye.
The English We Speak – Go the extra mile Transcript Video
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