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880. Is Paris ready for the Olympic Games 2024? (Article + Vocabulary)

I read an article about Paris’ preparations for the 2024 Olympic Games 🏊, discuss the issues, summarise the article and explain plenty of vocabulary. Is Paris ready for the games? What are the attitudes, complaints, expectations and fears ahead of this potentially controversial event.

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Notes

880. Is Paris ready for the Olympic Games 2024? 🏊 (Article + Vocabulary)


Intro

I’m in Paris and it’s less than 100 days until the Olympic Games begin here. 

Is the city ready? 

Let’s read an article on the subject. 

I found this article on www.TheWeek.com  

I’ll read the article to you, then explain and discuss what is written. 

I’ll also go through vocabulary from the article – and there is plenty.

Topic → Reading/Listening → Vocabulary → Discussion

Before we read the article, here are some questions to get you thinking.

  • If you like you can stop the podcast and discuss these questions for some speaking practice. 
  • What are the benefits and costs for a city hosting the Olympic Games?
  • Has the Olympics ever been held in your city or country?
  • How did people feel before, during and after the games?
  • Were people positive about it?
  • Did it have a positive effect on the city?
  • 100 days before the Olympics are due to happen, what do you think people are worrying about?

Article link 👇 https://theweek.com/sports/olympics-2024-is-paris-ready-to-party 

Vocabulary

  1. The build-up to this summer’s Games is being ‘marred’ by rows over national identity, security and pollution
  2. The lighting of the Olympic torch today comes amid a “dampening” of enthusiasm for the Paris Games in an increasingly “fractious” France, commentators warn.

    Light – lit – lit
    To light something
    To light something up

    Lighting
    Lightening (lighten)
    Lightning ⚡
  3. “We’re ready for this final straight,” said Paris Olympics chief organiser Tony Estanguet
  4. to mark the 100-day countdown
  5. With the clock ticking down until the Games kick off on 26 July
  6. France’s “bitter politics and gloomy mindset are dampening the mood” among a “fractious” public, said The Japan Times.
     
  7. The build-up has been “marred by rows” that go to “the heart of a bitter national debate about identity and race”.
  8. Herve Le Bras, a sociologist, told the paper that the Games threaten to “underline the major fractures in France – notably the fracture between Paris and the rest of the country”.
  9. An Odoxa poll of more than 1,200 Paris region residents last November found that 44% thought the Games were a “bad thing”, and that 52% were planning to leave the city during the 16-day event.
  10. One Parisian told the BBC that staying would be “unbearable“, with the Games making it “impossible to park, impossible to move around, impossible to do anything”.
  11. Security fears are also growing amid mounting global tensions.
  12. In a break from the tradition of opening the Games in the main stadium, the organisers have devised a “grandiose” ceremony centred around a parade of barges on the River Seine, said Le Monde.
  13. The original plan was for as many as 600,000 spectators to watch from the riverbanks, but security and logistical concerns have led the government to “progressively scale back” the plan, with the spectator numbers reduced to 300,000.
  14. And President Emmanuel Macron said yesterday that the ceremony might be moved to a new location if the authorities decide that the risk of an attack, potentially by drones, is too great.
  15. “There are Plan Bs and Plan Cs”, including holding the opening at the city’s Stade de France, he told television interviewers. Asked if the Kremlin would seek to disrupt the Olympics, Macron said that he had “no doubt“.
  16. Another potential threat is sewage pollution in the Seine, where swimming events are due to take place.
  17. Bacteria, including “pollution of faecal origin”, remains dangerously high in the river.
  18. Games boss Estanguet said last week that if water quality levels worsen, “there could be a final decision where we could not swim”.
  19. The Switzerland-based International Olympic Committee has “mountains of scepticism to dispel” in France and beyond, said The Associated Press.
  20. The $13 billion cost of the 2021 Tokyo Games and the “unfulfilled promises of beneficial change” for 2016 host Rio de Janeiro triggered widespread anger, and the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi were “tarnished by Russian doping“.
  21. But some previous predictions of Olympics doom have proved incorrect.
  22. In the run-up to the London 2012 Games, the Army was drafted in to bolster the security presence provided by private firm G4S, amid fears of a repeat of the riots that had broken out in the city in 2011.
  23. Journalists emitcyclical loud buzzing noises before every set of Summer Games”, said George Vecsey in The New York Times in 2004.
  24. Reporters will “continue to fret on schedule”, because it’s “in our job description“.

Estanguet acknowledged last week that “before this kind of big event, there are always many questions, many concerns“. But the Paris edition would make his nation “proud”, he said.

876. Thoughts & comments on recent episodes / A Spring Equinox Ramble 2024

Listen to me rambling about Daylight Saving Time, weird AI generated images for Luke’s English Podcast, and lots of comments and responses to recent episodes including the Birthday Party story 🎂 , the MBTI Personality Test 🙇 and the Walk & Talk in Paris 📹🚶.

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🔖 The Advanced English Summit – book your place for Luke’s Zoom talk (free) 👇

https://english-at-home.com/summit/


📄 Get the PDF 👇

Those Strange AI-generated Images 👇

1 Million Subscribers on YouTube 🎉

Here are my reactions to getting 1 million subscribers on YouTube, and probably 1 million+ on audio platforms too! Listen to me rambling on my own and with my daughter (6 years old now) while the subscriber number gradually goes up, and eventually reaches this big milestone.

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865. Catching Up with Amber & Paul #13

Amber & Paul return to the podcast for another tangential conversation about various things, including why Paul is angry 😤, how Amber gets crushed in her own bed 🛌, how our British children don’t need to wear coats 🧥, the special gifts Luke has prepared for Amber & Paul 🎁, the highs and lows of Paul’s global comedy tour 🎭, how he’s been telling the Russian joke on stage 😐, Amber’s recent trip to London 🇬🇧, The Beatles’ “Now & Then” 🎶, the next step in Paul’s career ⏩, Amber’s kids saying more funny things 👧👦💬 and more…

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☝️ The audio episode has some extra content at the end

What is The Lying Game? (next episode)

In the next episode we’re playing The Lying Game. If you want to listen to previous lying game episodes, check out this list 👇

308. The Lying Game (Part 1) with Amber & Paul | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

309. The Lying Game (Part 2) with Amber & Paul | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

317. The Lying Game 2: The Rematch (Part 1) with Amber & Paul | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

318. The Lying Game 2: The Rematch (Part 2) with Amber & Paul | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast   

343. The Interactive Lying Game (with Amber & Paul) / Descriptive Adjectives with T / Three is a Magic Number | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

436. The Return of The Lying Game (with Amber & Paul) [Video] | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast  

642. The Lying Game Returns (with Amber & Paul) | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast 

663. The Lockdown Lying Game with Amber & Paul | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

864. A Winter Ramble ❄️ Learn English with LEP

Join me as I talk without a script about lovely cold weather ❄️ being too lazy to wash my cups 🍵 feeling exhausted because my son won’t sleep 👶😮‍💨 New Year’s Eve celebrations 🛋 performing stand up comedy to 4200 people 🎤 a recommended YouTube channel about adventurous missions in the UK countryside 🥾 and recent horror films I’ve seen 🙀.

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GeoWizard’s Mission Across Wales #1 👇

853. A Conversation with Rhiannon Carter

Join me as I meet and get to know Rhiannon, an English coach whose mission is to help you feel awesome about your English. I had never met Rhiannon before this interview, so listen as I get to know her and we chat about her English & Welsh roots, moving to Edinburgh, studying theology at university, early experiences as an English teacher, why learners often feel ashamed of their English, and how she can help. We also discuss the wonders of fish & chips and deep fried Mars bars which you can buy on the streets of Edinburgh.

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Work with Rhiannon 👉 https://www.rhiannonelt.com/

Instagram 👉 https://www.instagram.com/rhiannonelt.coaching/

Rhiannon’s podcast 👇

849. STORIES OF INSECTS, BUGS & CREEPY CRAWLIES with Zdenek Lukas

Bed bugs in Paris & London, Mosquito hunting in the middle of the night, a home invasion by fleas and the terrors of cockroaches – listen to some anecdotes about encounters with insects with Zdenek who has recently relocated to Vietnam. Also watch out for various insect idioms which appear during the conversation.

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Insect Idioms

Here are the idioms which popped up during this conversation.

1. **To have a Bee in Your Bonnet** This idiom means that someone has an idea or a thought that’s constantly on their mind, often an obsession.

2. **To have Ants in Your Pants** If someone has “ants in their pants,” it means they are restless or fidgety, unable to sit still.

3. **To be as Busy as a Bee** This idiom describes someone who is extremely busy and productive, like a hardworking bee in a hive.

4. **To have Butterflies in Your Stomach** When you’re nervous or anxious, you might say you have “butterflies in your stomach.”

5. **To be The Bee’s Knees** This expression is used to describe something excellent or outstanding.

6. **To Make a Beeline for** If you “make a beeline for” something or someone, you head directly towards it, just like a bee flying straight to a flower.

7. **Like a Moth to a Flame** If someone is drawn to something or someone despite the potential dangers, they are said to be like a moth to a flame.

8. **To bug someone** To annoy someone

Also, to bug a place means to hide recording equipment in a place in order to spy on the people living there. Zdenek believes his apartment is not bugged, thankfully.


🏆LEP Premium series P53 available now! Click here to sign up to LEP Premium🏆


Luke on Other People’s Podcasts recently 🎧👇

848. The Superpower of Starting English Early with Kids (with Bree Aesie)

Bree Aesie is an English teacher with a background in psychology, especially child development, and in this episode she comes onto LEP with advice and encouragement for parents who want to help their children to learn English from an early age.

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☝️ The audio version has extra content – an introduction and an ending ramble from Luke☝️


Listen to Luke’s funny & dramatic story on Bree’s podcast 👇 “Into The Story: Learn English with True Stories”

Visit the episode page on Bree’s website with full transcript & vocabulary notes


Intro Script for Episode 848 The Superpower of Starting English Early with Kids

Hello folks, 

As you can see, this episode is called The Superpower of Starting English early with kids and as you can probably work out from the title, we’re going back the subject of helping your children to learn English.

This is a topic I’ve touched upon in the past, notably with Alexander and his daughter Alice in episode 685 and also conversations I’ve had with my wife about this over the last few years. Also there was the fairly recent episode with Anna Tyrie about the language of children and parenting where we looked at lots of vocabulary surrounding the world of kids. That was episode 814. 

This time, the focus is on how you as a non-native speaker of English, can give your kids a head start with their learning of English by talking to them in English at home. Obviously for many of you, this might not be relevant because you don’t have children, you’re not planning to have children or because you already have children and they’re all grown up now and so it’s just too late! Or perhaps your kids are all grown up and they speak better English than you! (Some of my students do say this is a reason for their learning English)

But for a lot of you out there who are parents of young children or who are going to have children, and you want them to speak English, this episode is for you. Everyone else – stick around, there are bound to be things you can gain from this. 

I know that it might seem a bit strange to speak English to your children, or you might feel reluctant to do it because you think your level isn’t quite right. Well, this conversation is here to speak to you about that, to encourage you to do speak English with your kids, to show you that you can do it and to show you some ways in which you can do it.

My guest is Bree Aesie. She is a podcaster too and has a podcast for learners of English that focuses on storytelling. It’s called Into The Story. She invites guests onto her show to tell their personal stories. As you’ll hear, Bree invited me onto her show to tell a story of my own, and I told one which I haven’t shared on LEP before. It’s a funny and quite dramatic story of fatherhood, challenges with operating in a second language, with a bit of culture shock mixed in too. It should give you a laugh or two. You can listen to it on her podcast now – it’s being published by Bree on the same day I’m publishing this. “Into the Story” – it’s available where you get your podcasts. Link in the description.

Bree is an English teacher. She works with adults and children. She has a background in psychology and child development, and she’s very interested in the whole subject of language learning in children. Let’s listen to what she has to say about it, and here we go!

843. The Birth of Our Son

Talking to my wife (and daughter) about the birth of our son, who came into the world just a few weeks ago. We describe what happened, and explain how it feels to become parents for the second time. This is a very personal, first-hand account of childbirth and the experience of bringing a child into the world. Watch out for the language of childbirth and children which has previously been explained in episodes 162, 491, 492 and 814.

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Previous episodes on this subject, including specific vocabulary explanations:

161. She’s Having a Baby (with Amber Minogue) | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast 

162. Having Babies: Vocabulary / A Male Perspective | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast (Vocabulary Explanations included)

491. Becoming a Dad (with Andy & Ben) Part 1 (Vocabulary Explanations included)

492. Becoming a Dad (with Andy & Ben) Part 2 (Vocabulary Explanations included)

502. The Birth of My Daughter | Luke’s ENGLISH Podcast

515. Becoming “Maman” with Amber & Sarah – Bringing Up Children The French Way

597. Growing Up / Getting Older / Becoming a Father (with Paul Taylor) 

814. The Language of Children & Parenting (with Anna Tyrie / English Like a Native) (Vocabulary Explanations included)

842. A Pre-Baby Summertime Ramble ☀️👶

Hang out with me for an unscripted and unedited ramble about things like engaging moments while English teaching, how it feels to be about to become a father again, a funny new recording of my daughter speaking English, some recent films I’ve seen, and a recording of me doing stand-up comedy in front of an audience recently.

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The films I mentioned in this episode 🎬 🎬 🎬

  • Guardians of the Galaxy 3
  • The VVitch
  • Hereditary
  • Spiderman Across the Spiderverse
  • Mission Impossible 3 – 6
  • Top Gun Maverick
  • Sorcerer

My conversation with Antony Rotunno about the film Sorcerer