QUICK FIX SOCIETY By Janet Mendell Goldstein
Outline • Background information • Structure analysis • Paraphrases of the text • Summary of the text • Appreciation of writing skills • Exercises
About the author • Go to text book. female 68 consultant, writer About contemporary life, etc.
Quick-fix lifestyle • What are the features of a quick-fix society? • Do you agree with the author? Give examples to illustrate your point. • How to understand quick-fix lifestyle?
About time • Comment on the following sayings. • Time is money. If you waste time, • you waste money. • 2) Time is life. The important thing is • to learn how to spend time.
Now instead of later. • Faster instead of slower. • Superficially instead of thoroughly. The motto of a fast fix society: Do it now, get it over with, skim the surface of life.
I agree: Transportation Eating habits Consumption habits Entertainment or amusement Reading, writing, learning habits Human relationships Health problems Capacity for enjoying life
I disagree: If you disagree with the author and think that the desire for speed is basically good, how would you defend your position?
Structure of the text Her ride on fast roads and her return trip of a country road • Introduction (para.1-3) • Body (para.4-6) • Conclusion (para.7-8) Now instead of later Faster instead of slower Superficially instead of thoroughly Slow down and rediscover life
Check for words: fill in the blanks • You can’t carry all these books at once. You must make several __________. • The ship __________ down into the water. • When I arrived at the railway station, I couldn't __________my parents. • Thevalentines’ day__________ Roman times. trips slides wait to see goes back to
Check for words: acting out the words and expressions Use your body language to express the following words and expressions: exclaim; sleepy; admire; wander; stuff ourselves with salads
Explain the following orally 1 Of course, we couldn’t wait to get there, so we took the Pennsylvania Turnpike and a couple of interstates. 2 …. as pastoral scenery slid by us at 55 mph. 3 … and the herd of cows is reduced to a few dots in the rear-view mirror.
Paraphrase the text • 1. Of course, we couldn’t wait to get there, so we took the Pennsylvania Turnpike and a couple of interstates. • Because we wanted/were eager to get there as soon as we could, we took roads for the use of fast-traveling traffic.
Cant’s wait/can hardly wait: used when you are emphasizing that sb. is very excited about sth. or keen to do it, e. g. • When she received the letter of admission from Tsinghua University, she couldn’t wait to tell here parents the good news.
Fast roads in the U.S. • Highways: connect cities • Superhighways: a road with six or more lanes • Interstate highways: connect cities in different states • Freeways: roads within a city • Expressways: fast roads in or near cities • Turnpike: pay money before you use it.
2…. as pastoral scenery slid by us at 55 mph. • … as we drove at 55 miles per hour past beautiful country scenes. • slid by us: moved quickly past us. • mph: miles per hour
3. … and the herd of cows is reduced to a few dots in the rear-view mirror. • …(when our car was driving so fast,) the cows looked like a few dots in the rear-view mirror. • Rear-view mirror: a mirror in a vehicle, such as a car or a bus, which lets the driver see the area behind the vehicle.
Pennsylvania Dutch Their route After-class discussion
4. For four hours, our only real amusement consisted of counting exit signs and wondering what it would feel like to hold still again. • The 4-hour drive on fast rods was tedious; the only fun we had was to count the exit signs we were passing and to figure out how we’d feel if we stopped again.
Exit sign: a sign along fast roads that shows were vehicles can get out of them • It would feel like to hold still again: Here, “it” is an anticipatory/introductory “it”; it stands for the subject of the clause “to hold still again”.
5. Getting there certainly didn’t seem like half the fun; in fact, getting there wasn’t any fun at all. • We had expected that our ride to West Virginia would be fun, and that half of the fun we’d get from the trip would come from it. But we were wrong. It wasn’t fun at all.
6. So, when it was time to return to our home outside of Philadelphia, I insisted that we take a different route. • Outside of: outside • Route: a chosen direction or line of travel between one place and another, e. g. • What’s the shortest route from our university to Tian’anmen Square.
7. The two days it took us to make the return trip were filled with new experiences. • Our return trip took 2 days; the route was longer, and we drove much more slowly. But we had many discoveries.
8. We toured a Civil War battlefield and stood … get killed in the vain attempt. • We visited a Civil War battlefield and stood on the little hill. One hundred and twenty-five years ago, on a hot July afternoon, 15,000 soldiers fighting for slavery, while trying to occupy the hill, had no idea that they would fail and that half of them would be killed in the battle.
On another hot July afternoon…: This indicates that the writer and her husband visited battlefield on a hot July afternoon.
9. We drove slowly through main streets … on their way to market. • This time instead of driving past towns at 55 mph, we would enter quiet Pennsylvania Dutch towns and drive slowly through the main streets, at 20 mph, in order not to disturb the horses and horse carriages on their way to market.
slow (v.): to go at a slower speed • sleepy: (of places) quiet and where nothing much happens; inactive or slow-moving • crowd (v.) (here) to cause the horses and horse carriages to move close together to make way for us
10. We admired toy trains and antique cars in county museums and saved 70 percent in factory outlets. • We looked at with pleasure toy trains and antique cars and saved 70 percent shopping at factory stores.
Antique cars: cars made in an earlier period and usually valuable • Outlet: a shop/store that sells goods of particular make at reduced prices.
11. We stuffed … lying in it. • We had a meal in a farmhouse restaurant where for a certain amount of money you could eat as much as you wanted, and we fed ourselves with lots of spicy salads and homemade bread. After the meal, we walked leisurely outdoors to admire the sunshine and watch the herds of cows----this time they did not seem like little dots----lying in the sunshine.
Stuff (a space) with sth.: to fill it with sth. or with a quantity of things until it is full, e.g. • His wallet is always stuffed with coins. • Each time the boy went to see his grandma, she would stuff his pockets with candy.
12. And we returned home refreshed, revitalized, and reeducated. • When we got home, we not only felt fresh and energetic, but also felt that we had experienced a new way of life.
Refreshed, revitalized, and reeducated: three past participles used as subject compliment, denoting the state the subject “we” were in when home again. • Refresh: to bring back strength and freshness
13. This time, getting there had been the fun. • This time, the trip back home itself was not just half the fun, but the fun----the real pleasure we got out of our week of holidays.
14. Why is it that … and exploring the countryside? • Why do so many of us choose the uninteresting fast roads when we travel? Why don’t we try driving a bit slowly and travel into the countryside to discover and experience life there?
15. But more and more, the fast lane seems to be the only way for us to go. • More and more: increasingly, to a steadily increasing extent or degree, e. g. • When he first arrived, he rejected cheese. But more and more, he comes to like it.
As the day of the exam was approaching, we became more and more nervous. • Fast lane: the lane of a motorway used by vehicles traveling fast and going past other vehicles.
16. In fact, most Americans are constantly in a hurry----and not just to get from Point A to Point B. • In fact, most Americans are always in a rush----not just to get around from place to place, but also in many other aspects of life.
17. Our country has become a nation in search of the quick fix----in more ways than one. • In our country, people are looking for ways of getting things done quickly----in various aspects of life. • In search of: to try to find
Fix: solution to a problem, especially an easy and temporary one, e.g . • Don’t expect a quick fix for the financial crisis. • This sentence, along with the previous one, serves as a transition from the introduction to the body of the essay that analyzes the three ways Americans seek a quick fix.
18. Once upon a time, Americans understood the principle of deferred gratification. • In the past, Americans were patient to have their desires satisfied. We knew it took time for our dreams to come true.
Once upon a time: used, esp. at the beginning of stories, to mean “ a long time in the past” Here, the writer uses the expression humorously and ironically, meaning “ actually not long ago Americans were not so anxious that everything should get done quickly”.
19. We put a little of each paycheck away “ for a rainy day”. • We saved a little money each time we got paid in case we might need it in the future.
For a rainy day: for a time when money may be needed • Put (money) away: to save money to use later • Paycheck/pay cheque: the amount of wages, salary, etc. a person earns
20. If we wanted a new sofa …and Vacation Club accounts. • If we wanted to buy some new furniture or spend a week at a lakeside cabin, we could open special accounts at the banks to save money for it. • Lakeside cabin: a small house of simple design and construction at the lakeside where people, esp. a family, go during holidays or at weekends
Save (up) (for): to keep and add to an amount of money for a particular purpose/later use, e. g. • I’m saving (up) fro my retirement. • They’re saving up for a trip to Europe/to go to Europe. • help sb. out: to help sb., esp. in a difficult situation/ to give sb. help at a time of need, e.g. • My parents helped us out when I lost my job. • His relatives always help out on his farm during harvest time.