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Honey. Are you listening?

Listening Exercises
Listen to the conversation again by pressing the Play Audio button and read along with the conversation. Review the Key Vocabulary and the sample sentences.

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Wife: Hi. Hi Sweetie. I'm home. Um, I'm home!

Husband: Oh, hi honey. Welcome home. How was you day? [ Well . . . ] That's good.

Wife: It was terrible. The company is going to lay off about 50 people, and I might be one of them.

Husband: Oh, that's nice.

Wife: That's nice? You're not even listening.

Husband: What?

Wife: So, what did I tell you?

Husband: Um, you said that the company . . . something about 60 employees, um . . . and you might be one of them . . . or something like that.

Wife: No, that's not what I said. [ Oh? ] The problem is you never listen. Never! So look. I bought you this book. Here. Read it.

Husband: What? Now what? Big Egos, Little Ears: Getting Your Husband Out of the Clouds. What's this? What? And you paid $35 dollars for it?

Wife: No. YOU did. I used YOUR credit card.

Husband: Oh, whatever. Um, so, what great secrets does the book contain that I don't know already?

Wife: Okay. First of all . . . .

Husband: Okay. I know, I know. I know what you're going to say.

Wife: No, you DON'T know. The first thing is not to interrupt and think you know what I'm going to say. Hold your tongue for once and give me a chance to share my feelings before you come up with some witty response.

Husband: Okay. I got it . . . I think.

Wife: I hope. Number two. Show me that you're listening. Stop checking Facebook while I'm talking to you, turn off the TV, look me in the eyes. Anything to show me that you're paying attention.

Husband: Right. Uh, so what's for dinner?

Wife: Tsk . . . see!

Husband: [ Laughing ] I'm sorry. I'm just joking.

Wife: It's not funny. It's not funny!! So QUIT LAUGHING!! And don't tell me what to do to fix my problems either. Most of the time, I don't need solutions. I just need you to listen to my feelings.

Husband: Okay. I guess I haven't listened enough, [ No. You don't listen very much. ] and I haven't shown much empathy [ No. ] And, well, how about if I read a couple of chapters and then we talk about it? Is that okay?

Wife: Yeah. That would be nice. Thank you.


Key Vocabulary [Top]

  • lay off (verb): fire, let someone go from a company
    - The company often lays off people after the Christmas season because business slows down.

  • employees (noun): workers
    - Our store laid off three employees because they didn't listen to and follow company policy on several issues.

  • contain (verb): include, have
    - Why doesn't this job agreement contain more information on paid vacations?

  • interrupt (verb): break or stop the action of something
    - Problems in relationships happen when one person interrupts another.

  • hold your tongue (verb): be quiet, a polite way to tell someone to shut up
    - I couldn't hold my tongue when Ashley lied about our relationship.

  • witty (adjective): funny, clever, intelligent
    - My brother thinks he is really witty, but he only listen to his own ideas and no one else.

  • tsk (interjection): a feeling of impatience or disapproval
    - Tsk. I can't believe you don't treat your wife better.

  • empathy (verb): the ability to understand a person's feelings
    - People can develop greater empathy for others when they listen without trying to give advice.

Vocabulary Activities [Top]

Now, do these exercises to review the vocabulary. Then, return back to the Post-Listening Exercise to use the vocabulary in real conversations. [Why do these?]


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