181. Vocabulary & Expressions from Episode 180

Did you find it hard to follow the Skype call with my bro in the previous episode? Would you like to learn some vocabulary and phrases from the conversation? How about specific words to describe accidents, bones, muscles and other things? Listen to this episode to find out more.

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I listened back to my Skype call with James and thought that I needed to clarify and explain some things, so that’s what I’ve done in this episode.

Listen and you’ll hear me explain words, phrases and expressions from the first 15 minutes of the conversation in episode 180. The sentences I’m explaining are provided below for your reference. You’re welcome!

Vocabulary List (the first 15 minutes of the interview with James in episode 180)
Listen to the next episode of the podcast to hear me explain all these things in more detail.
First of all – sorry for my brother’s fiddling and fidgeting!
I’m not too bad thanks, considering…
The day before yesterday I came a cropper on my skateboard and dislocated my shoulder
The arm popped out of its socket
I feel a bit, sort of, run down, I suppose would be the word. A bit tired and achy.
Just the twatty landlord using the garden as some sort of rubbish tip as usual.
I was skating a block-sort of-bar thing. “Skating the block“, not “skating on the block“. (The difference is quite important if you’re a skater)
I was doing a board slide on it but it kept sticking.
I leant back a little bit more.
As I was coming off the block I landed fine but slightly on the tail of the board. (Nose, tail, wheels, trucks, grip tape, bearings – skateboard parts).
Slightly off-balance.
I put my hand down to stop myself falling but I carried on sliding out. My feet slid underneath me and I overextended my arm behind my head, and kind of slammed down on my body. My weight came down on my arm.
I immediately jumped up and it felt really really weird.
I felt a shelf where the shoulder-blade (he means collar bone I think) stopped and then there was a 2 inch gap and then the arm. (ouch!)
I knew at that point that I’d dislocated my shoulder. (Past perfect tense)
To start with there wasn’t any pain, the pain came a few minutes in.
I don’t normally get an ambulance for a self-inflicted injury. (what a tough and modest guy he is!)
I normally get a bus or a taxi to A&E but this time I thought it warranted it because I couldn’t move at all.
[It was] extreme muscular pain, like when you tear ligaments or sprain an ankle.
They were going “ooh” which makes you feel uncomfortable if someone’s wincing, you know.
They tried to get a needle into me for a drip. They couldn’t get a vein to bleed properly. (they couldn’t find a vein)
They put some intravenous paracetamol into me, which didn’t really do anything.
It’s an over-the-counter pain-relief pill.
Why are there no aspirins in the jungle? Because the parrots eat them all (the ‘paracetamol’ – yes, it’s a terrible joke)
I gritted my teeth and tried to ignore what was going on.
They drove me with the ‘woo-woos’ on.
(I tell James to stop fiddling… and he says…) I can’t remember where we were now.
They wheeled me into the hospital. (I attempt to highlight the irony of getting injured on a wheeled vehicle and then being taken into a hospital on another wheeled vehicle – it’s an unsuccessful joke, but never mind)
An Indian-looking doctor looked at me.
You can relax a bit when the doctor seems quite in-control.
He told me exactly what was going to happen. I’d need an x-ray to check that nothing was broken, then if nothing was broken then they’d give me some more drugs and then put it back in, and then they’d give me another x-ray to check that nothing had broken while they were putting it back in, which kind of made me think it might be quite a painful process having it set back.
They gave me some morphine, and it didn’t seem to do anything and I was, like, grimacing a bit, so they gave me some more.
They gave you morphine and they gave you nitrous oxide?
You’re breaking up a little bit.
Do you find that breaking up is very hard to do? (This was probably quite confusing, but it’s my brother’s attempt at a sardonic joke – referring to a famous song which uses the same phrase, but with a different meaning)
“You’re breaking up” (your phone/skype signal is not clear)
“Breaking up is hard to do” (Separating, splitting up with your boyfriend or girlfriend – there are two songs that use this phrase, “Make it easy on yourself” by The Walker Brothers & written by Burt Bacharach, and “Breaking Up is Hard to Do” by Neil Sedaka. You can listen to those original songs below. Sorry about my singing.
(James receives a phone call from his girlfriend because she wants to check that he’s okay. How sweet.)
She was a bit worried about me because I was a bit sort of groggy yesterday.
I feel a bit sort of run down, a bit beaten up, but fine.
Good thing you didn’t hit your head.
I didn’t shatter my collar bone or something like that, that would have been horrible.
It could have been something worse.
You don’t need a cast. Nothing’s broken.

That’s as much as I’m able to do at this moment. You’ll just have to listen to the rest of the conversation unaided and try to work out exactly what we’re saying. It’ll be good for your English!

Now listen to episode 180 again. I promise you will understand much more a second time. Click here to listen to & download “Episode 180. Dislocated Shoulder”.

Here are the lyrics (and chords) to My Girl by Madness.

Madness – My Girl

Bm G
My girl’s mad at me
Bm Em
I didn’t wanna see the film tonight
Bm G
I found it hard to say
Bm Em
She thought I’d had enough of her

D A Bm
Why can’t she see
Em D A
She’s lovely to me?
D A Bm
But I like to stay in
D G D Em
And watch t.v. on my own
Every now and then

Bm G
My girl’s mad at me
Bm Em
Been on the telephone for an hour
Bm G
We hardly said a word
Bm Em
I tried and tried but I could not be heard

D A Bm
Why can’t I explain?
Em D A
Why do I feel this pain?
D A Bm
‘Cos everything I say
She doesn’t understand
D Em
She doesn’t realise
She takes it all the wrong way

Bm G
My girl’s mad at me
Bm Em
We argued just the other night
Bm G
I thought we’d got it straight
Bm Em
We talked and talked until it was light

D A Bm
I thought we’d agreed
Em D A
I thought we’d talked it out
D A Bm
Now when I try to speak
She says that I don’t care
D Em
She says I’m unaware
And now she says I’m weak

Here’s the original video by Madness.


  • Marta KL

    I´ve just finished this episode and would like to let you know that in Czech we use a similar expression for your “eating is cheating” – it is “hlad je převlečená žízeň” – the translation is “hunger is only masqueraded thirst”. I think it means exactly the same like eating is cheating :)

  • Yohuali wrote this comment
    Submitted on 2014/06/11 at 4:59 AM
    It was definitely meaningfully. Thanks Luke for your podcasts, they are very useful and interesting!!!
    Regards from Mexico

  • Thank you very much

  • Takako.Y

    Hi, Luke,
    I think your My girl is far better than original one!!
    I love your voice and ukulele music!

  • For a long time I listen to your podcasts and only now I dare to give my testimony. I just love listening to you Luke, not only because you are an excellent teacher but also for being a witty and fun person. As for this episode I want to say I am very sorry for your brother and hope he has a speedy recovery. And as to what you taught us I must say it was very useful, as well as all others. To finish I want to thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to learn English so an easy and fun way. By the way, you have a great voice and I would suggest that you sing more often.

    A Brazilian fan.

    • Thank you very much for this comment. It’s really nice to hear from you Sandra and I’m very glad you love listening to the podcast so much. Thanks also for your concern for my brother. He’s feeling much better, but he’s still looking after his arm.
      Thanks too for the nice comment about my singing. I might do more songs, but only at the end of episodes!
      All the best,

  • Anonymous

    Hi Luke,
    You know what…I’ve listened to so many different English podcasts and I’ve found yours to be the most useful and interesting! Keep the brilliant work up!
    I really really love your voice and jokes :)
    A supporter from Hong Kong, China

  • Waow a whole episode only for the vocabulary, amazing !
    I will listen to it this evening to fall asleep and then 2 or 3 times more like usually ;)
    Thank you Luke for this hard work.