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for Today's Podcast

(to) stop by
- (to) go somewhere and stay for a short while

- one of a kind


for Today's Podcast

ages - a very long time

(to be) free
- (to) not be busy; (to be) available

how about
- what you say when you want to make a suggestion

night school
- a school that has its classes during the evening

(to) find (the) time - when you don't have  enough time to do what you want to do, you have to make time available to do that activity

(to) work or
(to) work (for someone)
- This is an idiomatic expression that indicates that something will be a successful solution to a problem

flexibility - The ability to make changes when circumstances require

(to) work around (someone's) schedule - (to) make a plan that fits another person's schedule

(to) check (ones) calendar - (to) look on ones calendar to see if a particular date or time is available

(to) call and confirm
- (to) phone somebody before an appointment or date and make sure that the date and time are still okay

beforehand - prior (to)

(to) pencil (something) in - (to) write something in  your calendar as a tentative plan, a plan that can be changed if necessary

(to) work something out
- (to) come up with a mutually satisfying solution to a problem

(to) look forward to (something)
- to be excited and happy about a future event

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It's a Date!
Making Plans to Get Together

I'm Jane Hanser, and I'm awfully glad you've stopped by the ESL Help Desk.  We are a unique podcast for learners of English because all of our examples and activities are based on authentic language, either written or spoken by others learners of English.  Our
Library contains audio stories, grammar and communication lessons.  If you are taking an English as a Second Language class or are learning English on  your own, the ESL Help Desk has something for you!


Where was the photo that you see above taken?  Have the two people pictured above known each other for a while, or have they just met?


Today's dialogue and vocabulary will provide you with the language you need to make a date to get together socially with others.  So much dialogue today is idiomatic: Expressions like "That works for me" or "I'm going to pencil that in" are essential to interpersonal communication nowadays. What do they mean?  How do we use them correctly and still sound natural in conversations or even in written communication such as email?

Let's listen in to one dialogue, as Luz  and Julio try to make a plan to get together.

Julio, we haven't gotten together in such a long time.  How long has it been?

It seems like ages.  I've been incredibly busy.  It's been at least six months.

Let's get together some time soon.   It's been way too long.

Absolutely, but when?  When are you free?

I'm free during the day.

I work during the day.

How about after work!

After work I go to night school two nights a week.  Unfortunately I can only find time on Tuesday and Thursday, around 6.   Will either of those days work for you?

Possibly.  I have some flexibility and can try to work around your schedule.

Okay, good.  Let me check my calendar.  Hmmmm.  I can't get together this coming Tuesday, or the Tuesday after that. But I can get together the Tuesday after that.

Tuesday the 22nd, at 6 pm?

No, that's my wife's birthday.  But Thursday the 24th works.

That works for me, too.  In fact, Thursdays are generally better for me than Tuesdays.  Can your wife join us?  That would be awesome.  Let's call each other and confirm that a few days beforehand.  I'm going to pencil that in.

Yes!  Me, too.  I can't wait!  Do you want to meet at Peet's?  It has great coffee and a great atmosphere.  And we can hear each other speak.

Fine.  I'm glad we were able to work something outI'm looking forward to this.  And wish your wife a happy birthday!

Do you have any ideas for future podcasts?  We hope you'll feel free to share your ideas with us. 

So from the ESL Help Desk, thanks for listening to us this week, and we have a date for next week, right? 

Music Copyright, permission of Luca De Bernardi
Photo of Headphones Copyright Karl-Erik Bennion

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