Розмовні теми частина 2 - Т. М. Гужва 2003

Appearance and Character

Exercise 17-1

Fill in the form yourself and ask your friends to do the same about you. Compare the results:

Computer Dating Information Form

Please fill in the questions below:

1. Age _____

2. Height _____

3. Weight _____

4. Sex _____

5. Hair colour _____

6. Languages _____


1. The qualities I would like in a date:













2. I feel most comfortable with people who are:













3. The occupations I am most interested in are:


fine arts


social work







home economics


4. My favourite activities are:







social work






5. People think that I am:
















a loner

6. I prefer to date someone who is:

my age

slightly younger

much younger

slightly older

much older

Exercise 17-2

(based on the topic «Appearance and Character»)

Fill in the missing words:

1. A _____ may be oval, round, square, broad, sensual or worried.

2. _____ may be regular or irregular, a _____ — athletic, graceful, slim or clumsy and plump.

3. A person may be tall, _____ or short, and in general, _____ is agreeable, winsome and gentle or plain-looking and _____ .

4. Speaking about somebody’s________ we can characterize a person as affable, amiable, good-natured, kind- _____ , sociable, generous, thoughtful, discreet, earnest or, on the contrary, hard _____ , ill- _____ , reserved, uncommunicative, indiscreet, insincere, incensible, rude, greedy, dashing, showy and _____ .

5. She is a _____ girl of about 18.

6. Ann is not very tall, but she has a strong body, she is pleasantly _____ .

7. She is always very _____ , she wears clothes of the latest _____ .

8. Her features are very _____ and her _____ is irresistible.

9. Ann’s face is _____ and she has a _____ nose.

10. Ann is a well- _____ , jolly and kind- _____ person.

11. She is very tactful, shy and sensitive, stable and witty, generous and _____ .

12. Ann is a pleasant person to deal with, she never loses her _____ .

13. Her words are entirely in _____ with her actions.

14. Ann is an intelligent, bright and quick- _____ girl, she has a big soul and a _____ will.

15. She is a _____ person, she always tries to do her best to help somebody when he or she has some problems.

16. She always manages to be and cheerful, energetic and enthusiastic.

17. I must admit, Ann is an easy- girl, and when sometimes it comes to quarrelling, she tries to make it up at once.

18. In a word — my friend has a_____________________ look and bright _____ , she seems a good sort of girl and her character corresponds to her _____ .

Exercise 17-3

Prove that the proverbs (sayings) have sense:

1. The face is the index of the mind. (A good face is a letter of recommendation).

2. Handsome is as handsome does.

3. Beauty lies in lover’s eyes.

4. Never judge by appearances.

5. A fair face may hide a foul heart.

6. Little bodies may have great souls.

7. Men are not to be measured by inches.

8. First impressions are most lasting.

9. A man is as old as he feels, and a woman is as old as she looks.

10. One’s fingers are all thumbs.

11. Extreems meet.

Exercise 17-4

Match the idioms in the first column with their definitions in the second column. Give their Ukrainian (Russian) equivalents:

1. ass in lion’s skin

a) a person who is rough and clumsy where skill and care are needed

2. black sheep

b) a person who is never much moved by emotions of any kind, and is considered to be unattractive for this reason

3. bull in a china shop

c) a pleasure-looking, perhaps irresponsible or licentious person; one who is fond of social life

4. copy-cat

d) a person whose character is difficult to identify or classify (of indefinite character)

5.cold fish

e) a strange, odd person; a misfit.

6. dark horse

f) a person who seems to pose a threat but is actually ineffective

7. dog in the manger

g) a person that is less powerful, or dangerous than he/she seems or claims

8. gay bird

h) a person whose chances of success are not yet known or have been overlooked

9. lame duck

i) a person who prevents others from enjoying smth. that is useless to him

10. neither fish, flesh [nor good red

j) a plain child who grows up to be attractive or brilliant

11. paper tiger

k) a person who works especially hard and steady

12. sacred cow

l) a person considered to have brought discredit upon a family or other group; a bad character

13. snake in the grass

m) a person that is greatly respected and revered, he/she is regarded as above criticism or attack

14. queer fish (bird)

n) a person who copies or mimics what someone else does

15. spring chicken

o) a disabled person that is powerless or in need of help

16. ugly duckling

p) a treacherous person who pretends to be a friend

17. willing horse

q) a person who seems to be friendly but is really an enemy

18. wolf in sheep’s clothing

r) an inexperienced person that is, perhaps, very young

Exercise 17-5

Describe the people you know or characters from boobs, films, etc. to illustrate the usage of these idioms.

Present your stories (or dialogues) in class without mentioning the idiom itself. Make your group-mates guess which of the idioms each story illustrates.

Exercise 17-6

Use these common idiomatic phrases in a natural context, first make sure that you know what they mean:

1. to have eyes at the back of one’s head;

2. to wipe somebody’s eye;

3. to shed crocodile tears;

4. to smile through one’s tears;

5. to comb somebody’s hair;

6. to raise the eyebrows;

7. to stroke somebody against the hair;

8. not to be able to see beyond one’s nose;

9. from mouth to mouth;

10. to take somebody’s breath away;

11. to have a sweet tooth;

12. to put a good face on something;

13. to see things through rose-coloured spectacles.

Exercise 17-7

Tell your fellow-students something about a person:

1. Whose face was plain.

2. Who was surpassingly handsome, close up, either fullface, or in profile.

3. Who had an awesome physical strength and could bend iron pokers or silver coins.

4. Whose thick hair stands wildly about her head.

5. Whose hair still retained its colour, and there was no sign of baldness yet.

6. Whose hair was turning grey over his ears.

7. Who wore her hair braided old-fashioned in long pig-tails.

8. Who had a dark pencil-line moustache.

9. Whose eyes were small and blight in deep sockets.

10. Whose brown hair curled loosely, softly, not in tight kinks.

11. Who was at least half a head shorter than my brother had been.

12. Who came only to her shoulders when they stood together on the stage.

Exercise 17-8

Give the meaning of the following in your own words:

1. He gave a little laugh.

2. He furrowed the skin of his forehead as though searching for words.

3. His lips were drawn back from his teeth.

4. He winked at her.

5. He narrowed his eyes against the sun.

6. He rolled his eyes skywards.

7. She back-combed her hair.

8. She drew a hair-pin out of her hair.

9. He stroked the cat’s head with the stubble of his chin.

10. I splashed some water over my shoulders.

11. She had once been noted for her beauty.

12. He looked older than his age.

13. He wore a fixed smile.

14. She gave are a knowing smile.

15. She made a pretence of smiling.

16. He was choking with laughter.

17. He burst into a happy, unguarded laught.

18. She rubbed her nose, as though it tickled.

19. He always had a runny nose.

20. He had big teeth that stuck out in front.

21. She laughed with a flash of gold teeth.

22. He shut his teeth together hard.

23. He had huge bags under his eys.

24. Tears blinded his eyes.

25. Her laugh became a cough.

26. Her dark blue eyes were red with weeping.

27. His eyes watered from the wind.

28. She bit her lips.

29. She wetted her lips with the tip of her tongue.

30. Her legs were like stalks.

Exercise 17-9

Match each expression in the left-hand column with the best meaning in the right-hand column. Place the letter of the best definition in the space provided:

1. He’s got no backbone

a) very drunk;

2. She’s completely legless

b) exaggerates or lies in order to impress;

3. He’s very thick-skinned

c) doesn’t care what other people think;

4. She gave him the elbow

d) very cowardly;

5. He can’t keep his nose out of things

e) ended a romantic relation ship;

6. She’s got a finger in every pie

f) always interfering;

7. He’s all mouth

g) behaves in a mad way;

8. She’s off her head

h) has an interest in many businesses.

Exercise 17-10

Choose your colour in accordance with your character:

Each of us has a favourite colour. Recent psychological studies prove that preference for a colour can reveal the character of a person. Calm and peaceful people prefer one colour, while those who are dynamic and active prefer another and so on. Which is your favourite colour?


If green is your favourite colour, it means you are dynamic and quite active. You are very much aware of what is happening inside you and around you. You control your emotions very well and like to be open towards others. This balance allows you to understand every situation well and to make right choices. You are always looking to improve your situation and that of those around you. In fact you are ready to help everybody. You have a friendly character and are very sociable.


Yellow’s a bright colour, full of light, lively... like you. You are quite sociable and are full of brilliant ideas. You like to fantasize about your future and always like to discover new things in life. You are adventurous. But, perhaps you should pay more attention to reality instead of living in dreams.

Nevertheless, you like to compare yourself with others and this helps you to be more realistic in your thinking. You are honest and put all your effort in whatever you do.


You are full of life and are energetic. You have many interests to which you give a lot of attention. Often, you set yourself a target and you do your best to reach it. You are always on the move.

You like to practise various sports and meet new people.


Blue represents tranquility and calm. You like to be in harmony with your surroundings and feel safe in them. You have a balanced attitude towards everything. Before making any move, you reflect upon it and when yqu’ve made your decision, you do it with great care. You are considered to be an affectionate person.

(from «Teen »)

Exercise 17-11

Translate these passages into Ukrainian (Russian). Try to find the description of your personality. Find all positive then all negative characteristics, write them down into your notebook in two columns. Discuss in groups what new things you have learnt about yourself from your horoscope.

With over 4,000 million people in the world, no two sets of finger-prints or personalities are identical. It’s no surprise then that we all express ourselves differently. Here’s what the stars have to say.

Aries people are inclined to shout, to be brusque and hurtfully outspoken. They tend to be commanding rather than deferential or considerate of the feelings of others. Aries subjects say what they think and feel at the time of speaking.

(Телец) The 21st of April — the 20th of May

Taurus people tend to be slow, deliberate and slightly ponderous in the expression of their ideas. They seldom impose their thoughts and ideas on others; they’re often very tenacious in their beliefs and very conservative in word and thought.

(Близнецы) The 21st of May — the 21st of June

Gemini subjects are born talkers. They like nothing better than having a good gossip. They’re often witty but change their ideas very rapidly. It’s no good trying to hold them to what they said yesterday.

(Рак) The 22nd of June — the 22nd of July

Cancer subjects can be very skilled conversationalists. They have a knack of drawing people out while disclosing very little themselves. They often make skilful orators and political speakers.

(Лев) The 23rd of July — the 23rd of August

Leo people are flamboyant and ostentatious. They say startling things and like to «talk big.» Don’t look for modesty — Leos are past masters at kidding you into believing they’re more distinguished, more important or more wealthy than they actually are.

(Дева) The 24th of August — the 23rd of September

Virgo subjects have a dry, reserved way of expressing themselves. They tend to be critical, matter-of-fact and precise. Their weakness is their pessimism — they’re slow in seeing and expressing the cheerful side of things.

(Весы) The 24th of September — the 23rd October

Libra people are usually very tactful. They believe in the kind, encouraging word, avoiding argument or abuse. Because of their quiet, courteous ways, they often fail to make the impact of their words, ideas or merit.

Scorpio subjects are curiously loud and say things regardless of other people’s feelings. They’re renowned for dropping clangers. They can be sarcastic and use words as weapons both to hurt and mislead. They’re outspoken, giving drama to their words, while deliberately and subtly creating an impression of honesty and innocence.

(Стрелец) The 23rd of November — the 21st of December

Sagittarius subjects usually have an erratic way of expressing themselves, their minds darting hither and thither. One minute they can be profound, the next, laughing at themselves. They’re generally cheerful and optimistic with a good sense of humour.

(Козерог) The 22nd of December — the 20th of January

Capricorn subjects are gifted with clarity of thought and expression. A plain, accurate statement of fact without frills or exaggeration is what Capricorns aim for. They’re not great talkers and often have trouble expressing their innermost thoughts and emotions. Naturally reserved, they seldom use two words where one will do.

(Водолей) The 21st of January — the 20th of February

Aquarius folk express themselves vividly and unconventionally. They’re full of novel ideas, inventing their own words and instinctively refusing to say what’s expected of them. They’re imaginative and stimulating storytellers. Brilliant comedians are very often Aquariuses.

(Рыбы) The 21st of February — the 20th of March

Pisces people are often wafflers who talk for the sake of it. They’re great sentimentalists and love embroidering, always adding the imaginative touch or two. They often act out their story, mimicing the characters involved, and adding flashes of humour or pathos as the whim takes them.

Aries — Oвен — Овен

Taurus — Телец — Тілець

Gemini — Близнецы — Близнюки

Cancer — Рак — Рак

Leo — Лев — Лев

Virgo — Дева — Діва

Libra — Весы — Терези

Scorpio — Скорпион — Скорпіон

Sagittarius — Стрелец — Стрілець

Capricorn — Козерог — Козеріг

Aquarius — Водолей — Водолій

Pisces — Рыбы — Риби

Exercise 17-12

Read the text, then work in pairs, asking each other questions about the text.

Brothers of Siam,

Siamese twins are bom with part of their bodies joined together. The finger-prints of one twin’s right hand are identical to the fingerprints of the other twin’s left hand.

The original Siamese twins were bom in Meklong, Siam (now Thailand), in May 1811. Their names were Chang and Eng Bunker. The doctor could do nothing for them, so they remained joined together for their whole lives.

Nowadays there is a big operation which can separate such twins.

Chang and Eng had different characters. Eng used to be optimistic and lively all the time, while Chang, was always miserable. Chang used to play poker (a card game for money) and poor Eng had to stay all night with him because he could not leave his side. They married two American sisters.

Their wives lived in two separate houses and the brothers used to spend three days in one house, then three days in the other. Eng had ten children and Chang had twelve.

When they were sixty-three years old, Chang died of bronchitis. Three hours later, Eng died too.

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