BBC Learning English: The English We Speak – To have a word podcast
Finn arrives in the office and finds Feifei is doing a crossword puzzle. He is not happy. Find out why and learn a useful expression for when you need to have a serious discussion with someone about a sensitive topic.
Finn: Welcome to The English We Speak, I’m Finn and I’m waiting here in the studio for Feifei, who is late – again. I’m really getting fed up with her. I think I’ll need to speak to her about this.
Feifei:(Door closing) Hi Finn, sorry I’m late. You know how I love crosswords? Well, I was just doing one, and I forgot the time…
Finn: We need to have a word, Feifei.
Feifei: We need LOTS of words, Finn.
Feifei: To complete a crossword successfully, we need lots of words.
Finn: No, I’m not talking about your crossword, Feifei. I’m talking about your lateness. When I say ‘we need to have a word’, I mean we need a short, serious discussion about this sensitive topic.
Feifei: Oh, I see. You’re upset that I’m late, so you asked me for a word.
Finn: That’s right. Here are some examples
- Woman: The noise from the upstairs flat is SO loud. It’s late now and I can’t sleep!
- Man: I’ll have a word with them in the morning. This can’t carry on.
- Man: I’m exhausted. I’ve been working 15-hour days for three weeks now. I think I might collapse.
- Woman: You should have a word with your boss. He might not realise how this is affecting you.
Feifei: OK, Finn. I understand. I’ll make an effort to be on time from now on.
Finn: It’s always better to have a word than just get angry.
Feifei: Yes, you’re right.
Finn: Good. Shall we get on with the programme, then?
Feifei: Well, actually Finn, I would like to have a word from you too.
Finn: A word with you. The expression is a word with you.
Feifei: No, no – I want a word from you, Finn. You see clue 6 in the crossword is so tricky!
Finn: Feifei, I don’t want to do your crossword!
Feifei: Oh just this one clue! It’s an animal with… five letters. What could it be? A horse? No…
Finn: Look, Feifei. I’m going to need to have another word with you! We need to record the programme!
Feifei: Donkey? No that’s six letters…
Finn: Feifei, come on!
Feifei: Maybe it’s a whale?
Finn: Stop it!
Feifei: Giraffe? No.
The English We Speak – To have a word Transcript Video
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