English Phraseology: Wake Up & Smell The Coffee

Coffee @ Illy espressamente, BLR

Are you a coffee drinker?  I am a tea lover myself but I have a latte on Saturday mornings while catching up on my favorite bloggers on the net.  I’ve made a list of expressions that could be useful when taking a break at the coffee machines.  It’s always nice to have something to talk about with visitors at work that has nothing to do with business, right?

[audio http://audioboo.fm/boos/1242555-english-phraseology-wake-up-smell-the-coffee.mp3]

Vocabulary Boost:

  • There is a pot of coffee brewing on the stove. (i.e. to make a pot of coffee)
  • I buy a special blend of coffee beans and grind them myself at home. (i.e. use a machine to crush coffee beans into powder)
  • I take my coffee black with 2 sugars. (i.e. no milk and two teaspoons of sugar)
  • Can I get a skinny cappuccino, please? (i.e. cappuccino made with skim-low fat milk)
  • I love the aftertaste of a good expresso. (i.e. the sensation released after swallowing)

Coffee Idioms:

  • My wife needs to cut down on coffee. She has 5 coffees a day. It’s giving her insomnia.(i.e. reduce the intake)
  • I bought a beautiful coffee table book at the  weekend. (i.e. a book intended to be left on a coffee table to look through but not read)
  • I usually have coffee & a danish for breakfast. (a cup of coffee and a sweet bread like  croissant)
  • Wake up and smell the coffee! He doesn’t love you anymore. (i.e. When someone doesn’t realize what is really happening or is not paying enough attention to events around them, you can tell them this)
  • Something is brewing.(i.e. there is going to be trouble, trouble is developing)
  • Coffee, tea or me? : question used to flirt with someone you like. Not to be used at the office unless you are totally convinced the other person is interested;-)

Fluency Builder: Discuss the following questions with your teacher or a friend.

  1. When did you start drinking coffee or tea?
  2. How many cups of coffee do you have a day?
  3. Does caffeine bother your sleep? Can you have a cup after supper?
  4. Describe your favorite coffee shop?
  5. Can you describe your favorite kind of coffee? (i.e. corretto, latte, cappuccino marocchino,, macchiato,etc..)
  6. What do you need to cut down on?


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