Category Archives: Ramble

847. RANDOM TOPIC GENERATOR (A 1-Hour Rambling Episode)

Join me for an unplanned rambling episode about various things including: hump day, bed bugs in Paris 🐞, fashion trends I followed when I was younger 👟👖, CDs 💿 vs cassettes 📼 vs vinyl 🎵, the most relaxing place in the world 🛏, Japanese zen gardens ⛩, Hunter S Thompson 🚬, the most disgusting job I ever had 🤮, and more…

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Random Topic Generator 👉 https://capitalizemytitle.com/random-topic-generator/

846. Topic Tombola with James

“The Glib Brothers” reunite on the podcast to discuss more music, films, books, scary AI and UFO sightings. James is my older brother and he’s probably been on this podcast more than any other guest. Listen for another deep and humorous conversation with lots of cultural reference points.

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Some of the things we talked about in this episode 👇

  • Blow Up (1966 mystery thriller film set in London, directed by Michelangelo Antonioni)
  • The Bee Gees (Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb – The Gibb Brothers)
  • Diary of a CEO (Stephen Bartlett’s podcast)
  • Record Play Pause by Stephen Morris (a book about Joy Division / New Order)
  • ChatGPT & AI (you know)
  • 1984 by George Orwell (a famous book about living under a totalitarian regime)
  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (another famous book about living under a different kind of totalitarian regime)
  • This Is Spinal Tap (a cult classic comedy film about a fictional rock band)
  • Alan Partridge (a comedy character played by actor/comedian Steve Coogan)
  • Three Amigos (comedy film directed by John Landis, written by Lorne Michaels, Steve Martin and Randy Newman, starring Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Martin Short – a Thompson family favourite)
  • Green Street (an unintentionally hilarious drama film about football hooligans in the UK, starring Elijah Wood)

James’ Music – Glytek Audio

A TOMBOLA :)

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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https://youtu.be/bskYld1hlTs

How are you? 🙂 Leave a comment below👇


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

839. Kate Billington Cycled to Berlin 🚴‍♀️

Kate Billington returns for her 4th appearance on LEP to create some fun English conversation for you to listen to. We talk about lots of things, as usual, including her cycling trip to Berlin and a nasty accident she had on her bicycle in Paris earlier this year. Expect tangents, vocab, idioms, jokes, stories, cups of tea and some very “professional” podcast eating.

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The audio version has some extra content ☝️

https://youtu.be/reKNRVU6l-M

British Council Mini-English Lessons on YouTube 👇

838. A 3-Hour Mega-Ramble / Reflecting on a Wonderful Spring Day in Paris

This is the longest episode of LEP so far, and it’s a solo ramble. Relax, follow my words, hang out with me for 3 hours, get stranded on a desert island of the imagination, and then get rescued. Includes a haircut, a sleep and a t-shirt change during the episode.

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PDF Script / Notes for this episode 👇

835. Life & Life Only with Antony Rotunno [Part 1] Cats, Titanic, Travelling, Teaching & Life Coaching

Antony is an English teacher, podcaster, life-coach and writer and he returns to LEP today for a conversation about topics which he has discussed in episodes of his podcast called “Life & Life Only”. Listen to us chat about why cats are good for your health 🐱, what the Titanic disaster tells us about social class 🚢, how losing his backpack while travelling taught Antony a valuable life lesson 🎒, how psychology is involved in English teaching 🧠 and more.

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Antony’s Podcast 👉 Subscribe to Life & Life Only wherever you get your podcasts https://plinkhq.com/i/1549021296?to=page

Topics for discussion in this episode

Life & Life Only (the podcast)

  • What is Life & Life Only, and what’s it all about?

Cats

  • What do you like about cats?

The Titanic

  • Why are you interested in the Titanic?
  • Can you give us a quick version of the story?

Travelling

  • Tell me about your travelling experiences.
  • Where have you been?
  • Did the experience change you at all?
  • What about losing your luggage? What happened?

Teaching English

  • How have you found the group dynamics and interpersonal dynamics of teaching?
    • Groups
    • Individuals
  • Have you had good and bad groups? What’s the difference?
  • What have you done in order to try to get the right atmosphere in a classroom?
  • Have you ever had bad or difficult experiences with students?
  • What are some of the weirdest situations in which you have taught English?

Life Coaching

  • What is life coaching and how do you do it?

Antony & Luke talk about the film “Sorcerer” (1977) on Antony’s Film Gold podcast

820. A Springtime Ramble 🌷🌸 Learn English with LEP

Rambling on my own about getting stuck in a time-loop 🔁, protests and strikes in Paris 🔥, the arrival of child 2 👶, and more.

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Tony Kaizen interviews Luke on his podcast

Michael McIntyre talks about having children

816. Kate Billington in the Podcastle

Kate Billington returns to LEP for the third time, to drink tea, talk about my pod-room, learning the bassoon, exam results, learning Chinese, responding to listener comments and talking about her videos on TikTok.

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Links and things

The British Council on TikTok

https://www.tiktok.com/@britishcouncilenglish?is_from_webapp=1&sender_device=pc

Kate’s video about “It’s raining cats and dogs”

@britishcouncilenglish Replying to @sentimentalbxtch Way ahead of you! #learnontiktok #learnenglish #idioms #edutok #vocabulary #english ♬ original sound – British Council English

@britishcouncilenglish ♬ original sound – British Council English
@britishcouncilenglish Kate’s back with another ‘very funny joke’ (she made me write that…)! Tell us what you think! #britishhumour #britishcomedy #englishteacher #learnenglish #learnontiktok #vocabulary ♬ original sound – British Council English

British Council Mini-English Lesson on For & Since

Previous appearances on LEP

Introduction Transcript

Hello listeners,

Welcome back to Luke’s English Podcast. I hope you are doing fine out there in podcast land.

Kate Billington is back on the podcast today. Of course, you remember her from episodes 689 and 705. 

If you heard those episodes I’m sure you will remember Kate and I know that a lot of you out there will be very happy that she is back again and yes, Kate’s return to this podcast is long overdue. She was a very popular guest when she was on the show before. So it’s great to have her back.

Some of you don’t know Kate because you haven’t heard those episodes but there’s no need for me to introduce her fully now in the intro because I kind of do that again during the conversation, except that Kate is an English teacher from England and we work together at the British Council.

People sometimes ask if Kate has her own podcast or YouTube channel or something, because they want to hear more from her.

Well, recently she started making videos for TikTok. We do talk about this during the episode, but that’s not until the end of the conversation, so I just wanted to give you a heads up about that right now at the start.

Kate is part of a team of teachers making content for the British Council’s channel on TikTok. You’ll see that they are making shorter videos (certainly shorter than mine) about things like British English idioms, culture and other entertaining bits and pieces. So, check it out – @BritishCouncilEnglish on TikTok. The link is on the page for this episode on my website.

So, what you are about to hear is another long and rambling conversation with a guest on my podcast. Hopefully you will stay engaged and entertained throughout while practising your English listening in the process.  

All you have to do as you listen to this is keep up with the changes and tangents, and enjoy this conversational journey into things like how Kate helped me with the shelves in my pod-room, how Kate doesn’t agree with the way I arrange my books on those shelves, how it feels to be filmed while talking (and yes there is a video version of this on YouTube), we talk about Kate’s academic successes and failures (or maybe I should say “failure” because it seems there’s only been one, and I’m still not sure it counts as a failure), the Chinese classes that Kate has been taking recently, quite a lot of stuff about Korea (hello Korean listeners), our blood types and what they mean, how we both feel about getting older, and how we feel about certain other English teaching video content that you might find on TikTok, Instagram or YouTube. All that, and much more, starting… now.

809. Toilets, Titanic & TikTok with AMBER & PAUL

An unedited conversation with Amber & Paul about toilet habits, Titanic (1997), weird videos on TikTok & YouTube and plenty more. Advanced level listening practice with the POD-PALs. Video version available.

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The audio version ☝️ has about 15 minutes of extra rambling by Luke at the end, not included in the video version 👇

Introduction Transcript

Hello, listeners, I hope you’re doing well today. Welcome back to my podcast. This is where you can do plenty of listening in order to improve your English. Because listening is a vital part of the process. You have to listen, listen, listen and generally get used to hearing natural English as it is spoken and my podcast can help you to do that. 

In this episode Amber & Paul are back on the podcast. In case you don’t know, Amber Minogue and Paul Taylor are my friends who have been regular guests on this show for many years. They are both stand-up comedians from the UK, living in Paris, like me. 

A couple of weeks ago, before I had a haircut, the three of us got together here in my room and had a conversation for this podcast. We didn’t plan the topic in advance. So you’re going to hear a lot of spontaneous natural speaking. We’re not slowing down or trying to use the easy words. This is just how we speak normally when we’re together. As you will notice, I try to explain things or clarify things as we go, in order to help you a bit, but still, it might be difficult, depending on your English level. 

If you like you can think of this as a kind of listening test. Can you follow what we’re saying and keep up with all the changes in the conversation?

You’ll see that the episode title is Toilets, Titanic and TikTok which gives you a general idea of what we talk about. 

We didn’t have a lot of time, so I just pressed record, and then quite quickly we found ourselves talking about toilets first of all.

So there’s a good 45 minutes of us talking about toilets.  

By the way, in British English the word toilet means both the room and the thing in the room that you sit on.

In American English the toilet is just the thing you sit on, and the room in American English would probably be called the restroom or the bathroom, although when we go there we’re not resting or having a bath, but anyway… This is a conversation about toilets.

We talk about what people do in the toilet, on the toilet, near the toilet and even above the toilet in some cases. 

So, be ready for some rather specific and possibly disgusting details about this topic. 

I don’t know how you feel about this subject. Personally I find it quite fascinating to learn about this very private thing that we don’t always talk about, except maybe when we’re together with close friends like this. 

For example, any women listening – do you know what happens in men’s public toilets? And men, do you know what goes on in women’s public toilets? I think we know what basically happens, but what about certain, other, unknown things?

For example, why is there usually a much bigger queue at the women’s loo (“loo” is UK English for “toilet”).

Do men always stand up when they pee or do they sometimes do it sitting down? And which one is actually easier or better? 

How do other people deal with public toilets, which can be dirty or messy? And in fact, why are they so messy, especially in the toilet cubicles? What are people doing in there?

And have you ever argued, with someone you live with, about leaving the toilet seat up?

Women often get frustrated with men who leave the toilet seat up. 

Toilet seat up? toilet seat down? What’s going on here? Why is that annoying? And who is right?

That’s just a sample of the kinds of things we’re talking about, OK? 

So, brace yourself – toilet talk is coming, with some specific references to hygiene and cleanliness too. 

Then, somehow we go from the toilet, to the film Titanic, and that will be generally less disgusting and problematic I think, although arguably what happened on the Titanic is much much worse than what normally happens in the toilet, but I don’t know your habits, I don’t know your life.  

Then things get a bit more graphic again at the end of the conversation as we talk about some weird, disgusting and yet strangely satisfying videos we like to watch on TikTok and YouTube.

So here is an unedited talk full of tangents about tea, toilets, Titanic, TikTok trends and more, and here we go…

Ending Transcript (These are the things I say at the end of the audio version + a few spontaneous bits)

OK audio people, how was that for you?

  • Did you manage to keep up? 
  • Did you learn anything new?
  • Do you have anything to add to this conversation?

Congratulations for making it this far. You just entered over 1 hour of English into your head. Think of the people who didn’t do that. They now have 1 hour less of English exposure.

As I said at the start, this conversation was fast (as usual) and there were probably things you missed.

I started the recording before we were ready to begin, that’s because I just needed to get started because we didn’t have a lot of time (Amber had to leave at about 3.30 as usual). So I just hit record.

Paul asked about which audience is bigger – the video viewers or the audio listeners. I said the audio listeners outnumbered the video viewers and so Paul said he wouldn’t do too many visual things, like visual jokes.

Then he pretended to take his trousers off (I guess this was in order to make a visual joke). In fact, he unzipped his jeans, but didn’t actually unbuckle his belt.

This led to Paul commenting that men only unbuckle their belt or fully undo their trousers twice each day, and then we were off and the topic turned to the topic of men undoing their trousers in the toilet, and we asked Amber about what it’s like for women to use the toilet when they are wearing a one-piece outfit, like a jump suit. Isn’t that complicated?

And that’s how it all started, you see. I guess if you’re still listening to this, you got that. I wonder how many people just gave up after the first 5 or 10 minutes. 

Anyway, that’s enough waffle at the end.

Like I said before, leave your comments (if you have a comment section where you are listening – use my website if you can. The link for the relevant page for this episode is in the show notes for this – check your podcast app of choice. The notes will be there, including a link to the website page)

Actually, could you do me a quick favour? If you enjoy my episodes, give me a rating and a quick review – on the Apple Podcasts page or Google Podcasts page – wherever you listen to this podcast. If you’re able to leave a quick review and a rating, that would really help the podcast. 

If you don’t want to help the podcast, then never mind. But if you’d like to help even in a small way – spread the word, leave a review, leave a rating and all that good stuff.

Of course you can also go further and send a donation to help support the show – there’s a PayPal donate button on my website. 

And if you have sent me a donation recently – thank you very very much. YOu make this podcast possible and you allow this show to exist. Seriously.

And then there are the premium subscribers. More premium content is coming soon I promise. As I always say, it does take some time for me to produce the premium content because it requires a lot more preparation due to the more rigorous approach that I take to those episodes, with their PDFs and everything. I’m working on more Story episodes for the premium content. I’ve been writing and re-writing some stories about my life – childhood tales and more. That’s coming soon. Thank you if you are a premium subscriber – again you are keeping the show alive.

If you have questions about LEP Premium, including “How do I get the PDFs? How do I find all the episodes?” and more – check my website. All those questions are answered there – www.teacherluke.co.uk/premiuminfo All the frequently asked questions are there.

Thank you for your support everyone! Let’s keep this thing going.

Take care out there in LEPland. Keep your chin up, keep a smile on your face if you can. Be good to yourself, be excellent to each other, have another lovely morning, afternoon, evening or night and I will speak to you in the next instalment, coming soon. Good bye bye bye bye bye! 

Call me a photoshop master

What do you think listeners? Leave your comments below 👇

805. A New Year Ramble 2023 / Learn English with LEP

A rambling episode about making a fresh start in the new year, and some things I just have to tell you about listening to Luke’s English Podcast using a podcast app on your phone + lots of tangents. I hope you enjoy it!

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Episode notes / Transcript

  • I start reading at 12mins12seconds in the audio version
  • Sometimes I go “off-script” and say things which are not written here. I hope you can follow it all.

HELLO!

If you’re new to this podcast – I’m Luke, I’m an English teacher and comedian from England, and I’ve been doing this podcast for learners of English for about 14 years now.

You can use my podcast to improve your English in various ways, but the main thing is that it can help you do more listening, which is essential for acquiring natural, and instinctive English. What I mean by instinctive English is that you get an instinctive feel for the language, and this is what you can get from simply engaging with English in spoken form or written form and focusing on understanding it. It really helps if the process is fun and so I do try to keep things funny (this isn’t funny though) or just entertaining and interesting as much as possible.

This is episode 805 and it’s called A New Year Ramble 2023.

I am just going to talk to you for at least an hour. Just listen to my voice for the duration of the episode and remember – all the words and sentences I am saying are all going into your brain and a lot of it will stick there! This is perhaps more effective for your English progress than slaving away over a grammar book or staring at word lists. Just listen to me, follow my words, stick with me and hopefully enjoy it all. Let the rest happen naturally.

For this episode I’ve written some notes which I am reading from sometimes, and some stuff is spontaneous.

The main thing in this episode is that I’m just going to have a ramble. That means talking and talking, sometimes going this way sometimes that way, moving from one topic to another and one thought to another without having a very clearly defined structure. As I said, I’m just going to talk to you for a while. Join me!

New Listeners, a Fresh Start & Learning English with LEP in 2023

In January I find that new people start listening (hello!) 

Also people return to the podcast and generally refocus on learning English, turning over a new leaf. 

New Year’s resolutions 

I like to make a fresh start every January and say some things on the podcast to explain what this is, how it works, and how you can learn English from my content. 

This is the 14th time I’ve recorded an new year episode. It’s my 14th January on this show so I have done quite a lot of episodes in the past welcoming new people and talking about how you can learn English with this podcast, and what the aims of this project are. 

So, instead of repeating the same things again, I’ll suggest that you check out some of these episodes. (Pick some episodes to recommend)

Where can I find all your episodes, Luke?

You can always find all my episodes in the archive on my website. If you’re watching on YouTube, not all the episodes are there. Just some.

All rest are in my episode archive on my website including episode titles, numbers, summaries of what’s in each episode and then on each page you’ll find an audio player, a download button and sometimes vocabulary notes, transcripts of some or all of the episode and more things.

www.teacherluke.co.uk/episodes 

Some things you should know about how to listen to LEP 

I’ve noticed from quite a lot of comments and emails recently that people don’t know certain key information about my show.

Let’s just clarify a few things here about this podcast. 

  • Free episodes (Luke’s English Podcast)
  • and premium episodes (Luke’s English Podcast Premium)

Free Episodes

Free episodes are free! You’re listening to a free episode right now! 

If you’re listening using a podcast app on your phone, you might notice some advertising. This helps me to continue doing the podcast and pays for things like rent, internet, food. 

Premium Episodes

Premium episodes are only available if you sign up to LEP Premium for about 4$ a month. This also helps me to pay for things like food, clothes for my daughter, flowers for my wife, and loads of other things. This is how I actually live these days! 

Anyway, premium episodes are for premium subscribers and they’re usually about vocabulary, pronunciation and grammar.

The premium episodes have PDFs.

Some premium subscribers don’t know how to find the PDFs. 

I’ll tell you more about premium a bit later including the best way to listen to premium episodes and how to get the PDFs. 

How to listen to the free episodes

My show has always been primarily an audio podcast which most people listen to using a podcast app on their phone. 

You can also listen to the episodes on my website. 

I publish my episodes on YouTube as well. 

Over the last couple of years I’ve been filming myself with a webcam while recording my episodes and putting those video versions on YouTube. Some of those YouTube videos have sort of gone viral and I’ve ended up being a kind of YouTuber as well, but I still consider this show to be an audio podcast first and foremost.

Sometimes there is more content in the audio versions, for example if I have an interview with a guest, the video version might only contain the conversation, whereas the audio version will probably include an introduction and some talking from me at the end of the episode (perhaps a short ramble or some vocabulary explanations). 

When it’s possible I add some text on the screen of video versions on YouTube so you can read while you listen, but I don’t do that every time. 

Automatic subtitles are available (usually) on my YouTube videos. 

But this show is primarily an audio podcast. This is how I think of it. It’s an audio show which you can listen to in the normal way people listen to podcasts, which means using a podcast app on your phone. 

Now, I’m going to go a bit basic here and explain what a podcast app is. 

Back to basics: What is a podcast app?

The majority of you listening already know all this stuff so I’m just patronising you, but I suppose you could just pay attention to the way I’m describing all of this. How would you explain how to listen to a podcast, to someone who is completely new to the whole thing? Here’s how I would do it.  

For those of you who don’t know, a podcast app is an app you download (free) onto your phone from the App Store (iOS) or Play Store (Android). 

Lots of apps are available as I said. Check your phone. You might already have one. If you’re on iOS, you can look for the one with the purple icon that says Podcasts. Personally I’m not a huge fan of that app, but it will work fine.  

Maybe you don’t have a podcast app on your phone, in which case, download one (PocketCasts!) then just search in the app for Luke’s English Podcast and then subscribe to it. Of course, other podcasts are available but who needs other podcasts I ask you?

New episodes will arrive there every time I publish them and it’s super convenient. You can listen to episodes on headphones (recommended) or just blare them out loud on your phone on the back of the bus or something if you want to annoy everyone around you or perhaps help them learn English too. 

You can listen when your phone is connected to wifi (probably at home or maybe in the office when you should be working) or you can listen when you’re outside using your phone’s data internet connection. 

Podcast apps will also save your place in the episode, if you press stop for some reason. The app will remember where you stopped. Then when you go back to the app later and start listening to that episode again, the app will remember where you stopped and you can carry on listening. Perfect! No need to worry about my episodes being too long! No need to listen to the whole thing in one single sitting.

There are also other advantages to using a podcast app on your phone, including being able to add my premium episodes to the app as well, if you sign up. I’ll explain more about that in a minute. 

A lot of people use Spotify to listen to podcasts. Great! The only problem there is that you can’t add premium episodes to Spotify, because it’s not a “normal podcast app”. 

Don’t use the Luke’s English Podcast App any more

By the way, I am not talking about the LEP App here. A lot of you have downloaded that on your phones. 

It’s listed in the app store as “Luke’s English Podcast App” and it might appear on your phone as simply LEP.

But, don’t use the LEP app any more. It is defunct. New episodes are no longer arriving there and in a few months it will disappear from the App Store completely. So, you can forget about the LEP App now. It’s sad, I know, but it’s not the end of the world because you can continue listening in any other normal podcast app as I’ve said.

How to listen to LEP Premium and how to get the premium PDFs

Right, so let me talk a bit about LEP Premium. This isn’t a promotion by the way, it’s just information which a lot of people don’t know. No pressure to sign up to my premium subscription or anything. It’s totally up to you. Of course I hope you do, but it’s up to you right? 

By the way, premium people – new episodes are coming including some storytime episodes. 

So, I am constantly getting emails from people saying “I have signed up to LEP Premium but how do I listen and how do I get the PDFs?” and I just feel like a surprising number of people out there are somehow missing out on basic information which you just have to know or I might go a bit mad and stick bananas in my ears and then everyone will say “Hey you’ve got bananas in your ears” and I’ll say “What??” and they’ll say “You’ve got bananas in your ears!!!” and I’ll say “What????” and they’ll say “WHY HAVE YOU GOT BANANAS IN YOUR EARS???” and I’ll say “I CAN’T HEAR YOU I’VE GOT BANANAS IN MY EARS!!!”

That’s what will happen if everyone continues not to know certain basic information about my podcast and about how the premium part works. 

So…

Let me explain as quickly and clearly as possible, then we’ll move on to some ramblings about other perhaps more entertaining matters. 

The best way to listen to premium episodes is to add LEP Premium to a podcast app on your phone. 

Let’s say you’re using Apple Podcasts to listen to the normal free episodes of LEP and you’ve decided it’s time to also listen to the premium content to push your English further. Maybe one day you just say to yourself “Hey, I think it’s time to also listen to the premium content to push my English further” but then you think, but what do I do? Where do I go? And crucially – how do I get those precious PDFS???? 

Ok, so let’s say you’ve gone to www.teacherluke.Co.uk/premium on your phone and you’ve signed up to LEP Premium and you are logged into Acast+ (the platform I use for the premium subscription). 

You’ll see that you have the option to “Listen now” or  “Add show to app”. 

If you tap “listen now” you’ll see a list of all the episodes and you can play them, listen to them. But this is not a convenient way to listen. 

You need to tap “add show to app”, so tap that and you can choose the podcast app which you have on your phone and which you use to listen to the free episodes, see? 

Again, let’s say you’re using Apple Podcasts. Let’s use that as an example.

Where it says “Add show to podcast” you then tap “Apple Podcasts” and the Apple Podcasts app will magically open, giving you the option to subscribe to LEP Premium there. Do it! You’ve already paid, you’ve put your card details in and stuff, what are you waiting for. Add LEP Premium to Apple Podcasts! Go for it!

Now you have upgraded your LEP episode list on Apple Podcasts. You will now be able to find the premium episodes in your list. Before it was just the free episodes. Now the list includes the premium episodes too. Celebrate! It’s a miracle!

Spare a thought for LEPsters who can’t sign up to LEP Premium because of government stuff (Give peace a chance)

I think at this point it would be appropriate to spare a thought for those LEPsters who are unable to sign up to LEP Premium on Acast+, probably because of two possibilities  – either Acast has been blocked by your government because they think that LEP and LEP Premium are just far too dangerous for people to listen to, because – heaven forbid, I might talk about things which perhaps directly contradict the version of reality which they are trying to pull over your eyes, OR your credit card will not work for international payments because your country is being sanctioned because your government is being very naughty indeed. In any case, if you can’t access LEP Premium, I am sorry, but have a word with your government OK? But don’t get thrown in jail. I know, that’s easier said than done. I don’t know – I don’t want to casually suggest that you all rise up in some kind of revolution or something, and overthrow the people who run your country, because you simply cannot allow this madness to continue and you simply must be allowed to sign up to LEP Premium on Acast+. This is up to you. I’ll let you weigh up the risks and the potential benefits and so on. Good luck.

OK but let’s say you’ve signed up to LEP Premium and you’ve successfully added the episodes to your podcast app of choice. The premium episodes are now in your list, along with the other episodes. It might not be obvious at first, but they are there, just waiting to be discovered and listened to.

How can you find them? Well, you’ll need to scroll through the list a bit. Just scroll down through the episode list and BINGO you’ll see them. All premium episodes start with P and a number. P42, P41 etc. Some episodes have the word [Premium] at the start. 

Premium episodes P01-P36 were all added in July 2022 and they can be found between free episodes 776 and 777. Scroll down to episode 777 and look under it – see! Loads of premium episodes are there! (if you’ve signed up to the premium subscfiption and added the episodes to your app as I explained before)

ALL THIS STUFF ABOUT PODCAST APPS AND THE PREMIUM EPISODES IS GOING TO STOP IN A COUPLE OF MINUTES I PROMISE!! TRY NOT TO GET IMPATIENT OK??

What about the PDFs for those premium episodes? 

The links for the PDFs can be found in the show notes for each premium Episode. 

Anyway, what are “show notes” for podcast episodes?

In podcast apps, all podcast episodes have some text notes. This is where podcasters can add maybe a summary of the episode or some links to other things online. 

See if you can find the show notes or episode notes for each episode. Go on, have a look right now?

Some of you are saying “Come oooon Luke I know where the show notes are” OK then, find them right now and look at them and then say to yourself “Yes, I know where the show notes are, thank you Luke”

On Apple Podcasts, while you have an episode selected (you’ll see the LEP logo, the name of the episode and a play button) just drag the screen up and the notes will be revealed below. Again, it’s like magic or a miracle or something. An actual miracle. Thanks Jesus!

(one of my new year’s resolutions is to have more FUN in my episodes again, because life is too short)

This is where you will find the links to download the PDF for the episode. 

Tap one of the links, open the PDF and read it while you listen or send it to your computer where you can study it more carefully, annotate it with a pdf reader or even print it on paper in the old fashioned way. Then use a pencil to do the tasks. 

Ok? 

OK!

If you’re not signed up to LEP premium: Hello! That’s fine! 

You don’t have to sign up to the premium service if you don’t want to, can’t afford to or aren’t allowed to due to confusing global events and the actions of powerful men who sit at tables deciding your future. 

You are still a LEPSTER and you can still enjoy all the free episodes and all the rest of it, until of course the thought police completely turn off your access to the internet. Which country are you talking about Luke? Well, whichever country is doing it. 

There are show notes for all the free episodes too. (For many of you I’m teaching grandma how to suck eggs) 

If you’re listening in a podcast app. Have a look – you’ll always find a link to the “episode page”. That’s where you can read any vocab notes, find the associated youTube video (if there is one) and other information that I mention in the episode. 

YouTube Comments / Keeping My Episodes Varied / I’m the boss round here (yes, I am a powerful man who sits at a table and decides YOUR future)

Now we’re talking about YouTube which is another platform where I publish my episodes – either in video format (where you can see me talking, if that’s your cup of tea) or just listen to episodes without video and maybe switch on the automatic subtitles (don’t forget to smash that like button and click the bell icon and all that jazz).

One thing about being on YouTube is that there are more comments. 

This is because it is much easier to comment on YouTube than it is if you are in audioland (listening on a podcast app on your phone, probably). 

On YouTube the comment section is right there, and it is an integral part of the YouTube experience. 

So, people comment a lot more, which is great. It is lovely to get your feedback and it’s encouraging when people respond to what you’re doing. 

Sometimes it is amazing, especially if people write genuinely positive and appreciative things.

It’s mostly great, but it’s sometimes a bit irritating. 

As you know, if you are a human being, the negative things tend to stick with us a bit more than the positive things. 

By and large, my audience (like any audience of learners of English it seems) is incredibly thankful and appreciative, which is lovely. But naturally there are some people who are not so thoughtful and who write comments which probably tell us more about them than they do about the content that they’re commenting on. 

Now, while I do believe it is really important to take criticisms on board, to consider them and to learn from them, some comments are just a bit annoying! 

Which comments?

Well, obviously just abusive or directly rude comments are just the kind of “bird shit on the window of life” but there are some comments which are not exactly abuse, but which just show a certain lack of consideration for the content creator. I’m not going to list all the things that irritate me, because what’s the point, but one thing I have noticed is when I upload an episode, let’s say it’s a story episode, and the comment is “I miss your rambling episodes” or “Please make content about phrasal verbs” or “Please make short videos like “Don’t say please” or “stop saying thank you”.

Or I upload a rambling episode and someone comments “Make more stories, we want stories” or I do an Amber & Paul episode and the comment is “We want a Rick Thompson Report!” You get the idea. 

I do a variety of episodes, and I’ve always tried to keep the episodes varied for the whole time I’ve been doing this podcast, for better or worse. This is because: 

  • You can’t please all the people all the time (You might think that one type of episode is the best, but plenty of others will think that another type of episode is the best – in the end, I decide)
  • Keeping things varied keeps me motivated
  • It’s important for you to hear a variety of things – not just stories, not just teaching phrasal verbs etc, but also conversations, monologues, some easier episodes, some which are more difficult etc
  • I don’t think anyone thinks about this more than I do. I put my experience, my professional knowledge and also my heart and soul into making these episodes. They’re not always exactly perfect, but there is no such thing as “perfect” and it’s a fruitless mission to try and chase it. 

Ah shit I feel like I’m being too negative now, and also overthinking everything. Ah well. 

Is my show blocked in China?

Chinese LEPsters – how do you listen to my podcast? Do you use a VPN? Is my podcast available in Apple Podcasts? Is it available on any other apps? Let me know :)

Happy New Year! LET’S HAVE FUN IN ENGLISH IN 2023! GIVE PEACE A CHANCE!

Leave a comment to let me know you’re not a skeleton 👇