Looking for a place to eat

Click on the link below to listen to the dialogue “Looking for a place to eat” and other key phrases.


Chegando ao restaurante – Arriving at the restaurant
Grupo de cinco pessoas, por favor. – Party of five, please.
Somos em quatro. – There are four of us.
Vocês têm área para não fumantes? – Do you have a no-smoking area?
Você pode nos arrumar uma mesa perto da janela? – Can you get us a table by the window?
Onde fica o toalete, por favor? – Where is the restroom please?
No restaurante: frases do garçom – At the restaurant: waiter’s phrases
Quantas pessoas no seu grupo, por favor? – How many in your party, please?
Gostaria (m) de olhar o cardápio? – Would you like to look at the menu?
Você (s) está (ão) prontos para pedir? – Are you ready to order?
Posso anotar o pedido de vocês? – Can I get your order?
O que posso trazer para vocês? – What can I get you guys?
O que você (s) gostaria (m) de beber? – What would you like to drink?
Volto já com suas bebidas. – I’ll be right back with your drinks.
Gostaria (m) de mais alguma coisa? – Would you like anything else?
Como o senhor gostaria o seu bife? – How would you like your steak, sir?
O que gostariam de sobremesa? – What would you like to have for dessert?
No restaurante: fazendo o pedido – At the restaurant: ordering
Você pode, por favor, anotar o nosso pedido? – Can you please get our order?
Eu queria primeiro uma salada de alface, por favor. – I’d like a green salad first, please.
Gostaríamos de começar com a sopa de legumes, por favor. – We’d like to start with the vegetable soup, please.
Você pode nos trazer pão de alho e manteiga, por favor? – Can you bring us some garlic bread and butter, please?
Vocês servem brunch? – Do you serve brunch?
Vou querer o filé de frango com batatas, por favor. – I’ll have the chicken fillet with potatoes, please.
Vou querer o bife com batatas fritas, por favor. – I’ll have the steak with french fries, please.
Eu queria o meu bife malpassado/no ponto/bem passado, por favor. – I’d like my steak rare/medium/well-done, please.

Referência: “Fale Tudo em Inglês em Viagens!” – José Roberto A. Igreja, Disal Editora.

Career in Sales – English for Job Interviews

Click on the link to listen to the job interview “Career in Sales” and then check out the vocabulary below.

Vocabulary & expressions – Career in sales

Perks: something that you get from your work in addition to the money you are paid, such as a smartphone, a notebook computer or a car.
Niche: a job, activity, position or place that is very suitable for someone.
To overcome-overcame-overcome: to succeed in controlling or dealing with something.
Booming: growing rapidly.
To anticipate-anticipated-anticipated: to imagine or expect that something will happen.
We are keeping our fingers crossed: we are hoping that something will happen the way we want.
Boiling point: a situation when things get really difficult and people can no longer deal calmly with a problem.
Arena: sphere of activity.
To enable-enabled-enabled: to make it possible for someone to do something.
To head/headed/headed: to lead or be in charge of.
To accomplish/accomplished/accomplished: to succeed in doing something; to achieve.

Referência: “English for Job Interviews” – José Roberto A. Igreja e Robert C. Young Disal Editora.

A funny cabbie

Fill in the blanks in the dialogue below with a word or expression from the box.


NONSTOP         TIP          KEPT           HILARIOUS            CABBIES           FIND OUT

Dan: (laughing)
Greg: What´s so funny?
Dan: Sorry, I just remembered something (1) _______________.
Greg: Something hilarious? Now I´m curious! Tell me all about it.
Dan:Me and Howard, we took a (2) _______________ downtown last night.
Greg:A taxi ride? Is that supposed to be funny?
Dan:No, the taxi driver was really funny. He had this really big nose and he kept talking (3) _______________ with this heavy accent. He really did look like Pinocchio.
Greg:I guess most (4) _______________ are good at making (5) _______________. So, he had a strong accent, right? Did you (6) _______________ where he´s from?Dan:No, we didn´t, I mean we tried to, but he wouldn´t let us talk. When we finally got to our destination he started telling us not to (7) _______________ the door on our way out. He must´ve asked us a thousand times “Would you, please, close the door (8) _______________ on your way out?”, he just (9) _______________  saying it with this funny accent.
Greg:Don´t tell me you slammed the door, did you?
Dan: No, we didn´t. We actually gave him a good (10) _______________ for the ride.
Greg: I think he deserved it. He was a great (11) _______________, right?
Dan:(12) _______________! We had a great time.

Referência: “Fale Tudo em Inglês AVANÇADO!” – José Roberto A. Igreja, Disal Editora.





Bouncer: security guard, normally at a bar or night club (segurança de bar, boate etc.; “leão de chácara”)

The Smiths hired a bouncer to make sure gatecrashers were kept outside.
Os Smiths contrataram um leão de chácara para ter certeza de que os bicões ficariam do lado de fora.

“Don’t mess with the bouncers. They will kick your ass!” Joe told Mike.
“Não arrume encrenca com os leões de chácara. Eles te dão uma surra!”, Joe disse para Mike.

Referência: Inglês de Rua – American Slang José Roberto A. Igreja e Robert C. Young, Disal Editora.

I guess I just need to chill out for a while

Click on the link below to listen to the dialogue “I guess I just need to chill out for a while”.


Vocabulary, phrases and expressions
Feel like = desire or want to do something
‘d rather = would rather = would prefer
In the mood = disposed to do something
Worried = feeling concerned about something
Behind schedule = running late
Work overtime = work more than the usual time needed or expected in a job
Short-staffed = without enough workers
Maternity leave = a period of time a woman is legally allowed to be away from work in the weeks before and after she has a baby
Chill out = relax

Now click on the link below to listen to the comprehension questions and answer them.


Inglês Fluente em 30 Lições – Autor: José Roberto A. Igreja
Disal Editora

We can always talk shop over lunch

Click on the link below to listen to the dialogue “We can always talk shop over lunch”.


Check if the sentences below are true or false:
1. Sam turns down Tyler´s invitation for lunch as he´s already eaten at the company cafeteria. True __ False __
2. Sam and Tyler agree to meet in the afternoon to talk about the financial spreadsheet. True __ False __
3. The workload in Sam´s department has not increased at all in the past few months. True __ False __
4. Sam thinks hiring a new assistant for his department is a good idea. True __ False __
5. Tyler seems to be a good boss. True __ False __

Listen to the dialogue again and find words that mean the same as:
a- Self-service restaurant: ________________________________
b- The amount of work that a person has to do: ______________________________
c- Talk about work or business during free time: ____________________________
d- A computer program for financial calculations: ____________________________
e- No excuses: _____________________________
f- Decline an invitation now, suggesting you will accept it later: _________________
g- As soon as possible: __________________________
h- Very busy: _________________________________
i- Eat some food or a small meal: __________________
j- I haven´t seen you in a long time: ___________________________
k- Refuse: ____________________________________________

Referência: “Fluent Business English” – José Roberto A. Igreja e Robert C. Young Disal Editora


Ecofriendly products are here to stay!

Click on the link below to listen to the dialogue “Ecofriendly products are here to stay!”

Language check – Listen to the dialogue again and find words that mean the same as:
1.  not harmful to the environment ________________________
2. a group of products marketed by a company _______________
3. the natural world; the air, water and land in which people, animals and plants live ___
4. capable of being decomposed; not harmful to the environment __________________
5. a piece of cloth, soft paper or plastic that a baby wears to absorb its urine and solid waste _______________
6.  causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore capable of continuing for a long time ____________________
7. general direction in which something tends to move _____________________
8. not expensive _______________________
9. someone who is not easily pleased _____________________
10. able to be recyclable; possible to use again   ___________________________

Referência: “Fale Tudo em Inglês nos Negócios!” – José Roberto A. Igreja, Disal Editora.

Calling about an apartment for rent

Click on the link below to listen to the dialogue “Calling about an apartment for rent”.

Now, do these activities based on the dialogue:

Dialogue comprehension
1. Tom and Harry are looking for a room at the university campus. True___ False ___
2. Mrs. Logan lives close to the building where Tom and Harry are planning to rent an apartment. True___ False ___
3. The apartment has no furniture at all. True___ False ___
4. Mrs. Logan works as a real estate agent. True___ False ___
5. Tom finds the rent cheap. True___ False ___

Language check – Listen to the dialogue again and find words that mean the same as:
a- I have no idea; I don’t know: ____________________
b- A person who rents an apartment or house: ____________________
c- A woman who owns property (an apartment, house or land) that she rents to tenants:
d- With furniture: ____________________________
e- A machine or piece of equipment, especially an electrical one used in the home, such as a refrigerator or washing machine: _____________________
f- Take a look: ___________________
g- Advertisement (informal): _________________________
h- Informal for dormitory, a building at a college or university where students live: _
i- Real estate agent: _________________________
j- A supply of electricity, water, gas or telephone service: _________________
k- Make a short visit: ___________________________
l- Let someone enter your building by operating the electric lock on the door: ___

Referência: “Fale Inglês como um Americano” – José Roberto A. Igreja e Robert C. Young  –  Disal Editora.

Bounce back

to recover, to become hopeful or enthusiastic again, usually after an unpleasant experience (recuperar-se de uma adversidade, “dar a volta por cima”)

That big toy company bounced back from its financial crisis and became a serious competitor in the industry.
Aquela grande fábrica de brinquedos deu a volta por cima de sua crise financeira e se tornou um concorrente forte no ramo.

“Tony is a fighter. We are sure he will bounce back from his heart surgery soon”, said Jill.
“Tony é um lutador. Temos certeza de que ele vai logo se recuperar da cirurgia do coração”, disse Jill.

Referência: “600 Phrasal Verbs” – Jonathan T. Hogan e José Roberto A. Igreja, Disal Editora.

Lessons from the Nordic countries

I have always been a firm believer of the major role education plays in society and I´d better be! After all I have been a teacher since I was eighteen and have had numerous chances to experience first-hand how education can enhance people´s personal and professional lives.

However commonplace this introduction may sound, I sometimes feel that we take education for granted and fail to value it properly. Traveling around three Nordic countries (Denmark, Sweden and Norway) I have had a renewed opportunity to witness the benefits of sound education systems. I was amazed that every single Scandinavian I engaged in conversation with could speak English so well. I mean really well, not flawlessly, but pretty much like native speakers and with the capacity to shift from their mother tongues to English in the blink of an eye. I am not just talking about hotel and restaurant staff or shopkeepers, but the average guy in the street, as well as tram conductors and bus drivers.

Talking to some natives of these countries I found out that students start to learn English at Scandinavian schools from the tender age of 8 or 9 and that the English language program is taken seriously every step of the way, making sure students really develop the ability to interact efficiently in the language. A quick Google search tells me that the Scandinavian education system places higher importance on the integration of theory and practice. With a well thought out syllabus and qualified enthusiastic teachers you can probably figure out the outcome of a seven or eight-year program: by the time students reach the age of sixteen or seventeen most of them are already fluent in English. It is true they have an advantage on their side. Danish, Swedish and Norwegian, as well as English, are all Germanic languages. For them to learn a language that shares aspects of their own native languages surely helps speed up the learning process, but that does not diminish their achievement in any way.

One moment worth mentioning that I believe is revealing of the spirit that I felt Scandinavians have in common took place when I was at the very heart of Stockholm, on my way to the ABBA museum. Oh yes, I´m a die-hard fan of these four brilliant Swedes, though to be accurate, one of them, Anni-Frid Lyngstad, aka “Frida” was originally from Norway, but settled down in Sweden at a very early age. I owe a lot to their music and great lyrics that helped me boost my English in so many ways back in the early eighties. The sheer fact that they are Swedish but wrote their songs in flawless English showcases the quality of Scandinavian education again. But let´s get back on track here, I was on my way to their museum and after getting directions and walking ankle-deep in snow to a bus stop, I stood there, admiring the quaint architecture of the ancient buildings around and thinking I could probably pay for the fare on the bus, something I had forgotten to ask. I decided to make sure I was waiting for the right bus and asked a young Swedish woman who happened to be at the bus stop, Leonor. To my surprise she informed me I could not pay the fare to the bus driver and that tickets could be purchased at the Central Station or through an app that most Swedes seemed to have on their smartphones. Before I had time to consider walking to the Central Station she promptly told me she was taking the same bus and that she could buy the ticket for me on her smartphone app. You can probably imagine how grateful I was not to have to walk to the Station in that cold snowy weather. I insisted on paying her the amount of the fare, but she wouldn´t take my money. Instead she just told me, with a smile on her face, and I vividly remember her words “Let this be my good deed of the day!” Leonor then asked me where I was from and told me visiting Brazil was on her bucket list. I remember thinking to myself later, after she got off the bus, “Wow – bucket list – she used that expression so naturally and appropriately.” Incorporating colloquial expressions like that into one´s speech is usually a sign that someone masters a language or at least feels very comfortable with it. Again the word “education” seemed to keep on echoing in my mind as I rode on the comfortably heated Volvo bus towards the ABBA museum, and what a great museum it is, but that´s another story. My primary goal here is to zero in on the positive ripple effects of education, so let me tell you about yet another memorable moment from my travelogue.

With bike lanes just about everywhere, Copenhagen is by far the most bike-friendly city in the world. Riding a bike is definitely a fun and safe way to discover and explore Copenhagen, not to mention the sense of freedom it gives you. My nineteen-year old son and I rented bikes for a 24 hour-period and I can tell you it was an awesome experience, though you have to be extra careful in the winter as some streets become dangerously slippery because of the sleet. I strongly recommend renting a bike in Copenhagen, especially because cyclists, and pedestrians as well for that matter, are dully respected! Does it ring any bells? That´s right, EDUCATION.

Truthfulness, respect, cleanliness, punctuality, helpfulness, politeness and kindness, it all seems to boil down to education. Education is life-changing, a surefire way to foster well-being and progress and a fairer and less prejudiced society. I regard it as the only means by which we can build a corruption-free society, something we Brazilians are striving so hard to achieve and that we are all responsible for. I do believe each and every one of us can do our bit that in the end will make a huge difference. That´s the point I wanted to make here. I am glad the kind gestures of people I have recently crossed paths with prompted me to bring up this crucial subject once more.

And yes Leonor. You´re right. Good deeds can indeed go a long way. And so can education!

José Roberto A. Igreja has a BA in English and Literature from PUC/SP and is the author of Inglês Fluente em 30 Lições; Como se diz em inglês?; What to say when?; Guia Prático para a comunicação em inglês; How do you say … in English?; Say it all in Brazilian Portuguese!; Fale Tudo em Inglês and Falsos Cognatos – Looks can be deceiving!. He´s also the co-author of Inglês de Rua – American Slang; Fluent Business English; English for Job interviews!; Fale Inglês como um Americano; Phrasal Verbs and American Idioms!, all published by Disal Editora. You can check out his blog at www.faletudoemingles.com.br