EnglishPod - Can I ask you a favor?


M: Hello English learners! Welcome back to EnglishPod! My name is Marco.

E: And I'm Erica.

M: And we're bringing you another great elementary lesson today. One that takes place at the office.

E: Yes, today we're gonna teach you some great phrases, so that you can ask people to help you.

M: Right. And I think this dialogue is with a new person at the office.

E: Uhu.

M: So, when you're new, you always need to ask people for favors.

E: Exactly.

M: Okay.

E: Yeah.

M: So, we're gonna be asking for a favor.

E: So, Marco, what exactly is a favor?

M: Something that a person does for you.

E: Like a small helpful thing.

M: Ah, Yeah, a small helpful thing, so

E: Uh.

M: You know, likecan you pass me that pencil”. Maybe that's even a favor.

E: Yeah, or

M: Or

E: Maybe, uh, can you pick me up on your way to work.

M: Yeah, that's a favor.

E: Uhu.

M: Or even lending money

E: Yep.

M: To your friend.

E: Yeah.

M: That's a favor.

E: Yeah.

M: So, that's what we're gonna be talking aboutfavors and how to ask for one.

E: Cause you always have to do this at work.

M: At work, with your friends.

E: Uhu.

M: With your family. So, let's listen to the dialogue and then we'll come back and explain all the vocabulary.


M: So, a pretty busy office.

E: Pretty unhelpful colleagues.

M: Hehe. I know everyone so busy

E: I know.

M: They didn't help this poor girl.

E: Yeah, I hope she found the bathroom.

M: Hehe. Now, let's take a look at the language from the dialogue. So, let's start with language takeaway.

Voice: Language takeaway.

E: There's some great language in this dialogue, wasn't there?

M: Yeah, a lot of, uh, interesting phrases and words. Um, the first one thatthat I saw that was really interesting is on board.

E: On board.

M: Welcome on board.

E: Well, we've got some examples of how this phrase is used. So, let's listen to them to help us understand the meaning.

Voice: Example one.

A: Welcome on board, Sarah; if you have any questions, please feel free to ask me.

Voice: Example two.

B: We need to get a new office assistant on board as soon as possible.

Voice: Example three.

C: We decided to bring Melissa on board to join the marketing team.

M: So, basically it means

E: Welcome to the company.

M: Welcome to the company.

E: Or.

M: The team.

E: Yeah.

M: Welcome on board.

E: So, “on boardis the same asto the company”.

M: I guess also when you get on a ship, they tell youwelcome on board”.

E: Yes. That's where it comes from.

M: Or an airplane.

E: Yeah-yeah, yeah.

M: Welcome on board. Okay, let's take a look at our next wordabout to.

E: About to.

M: I'm about to.

E: I'm about to.

M: So, this a great phrase to explain that you're about to do something.

E: I'm going to do this thing really soon.

M: Okay, soso, for example, you can sayI'm about to go out for lunch”.

E: Uhu. Or I could sayhey, Marco, let's go record a show”.

M: I'm about to going to a meeting.

E: Uhu, exactly.

M: Right?

E: Yeah.

M: About to.

E: Going to do something really soon.

M: Okay. The next word we have is instead.

E: Instead.

M: Instead.

E: Instead. It means in the place of.

M: In the place of.

E: Yeah.

M: So, for example, if for a dinner I could sayI'll have the chicken instead of the fish”.

E: Uhu.

M: Right?

E: Or I can say “I wanted to buy a red sweater, but they didn't have one, so I bought a blue one instead”.

M: Instead.

E: Uhu.

M: Okay. So, in the place of.

E: Yeah.

M: And our last word forlanguage takeawayinterrupt.

E: Interrupt.

M: Interrupt.

E: Interrupt.

M: So, when somebody interrupts you, they're coming and

E: The talk to you while you're doing something or maybe while you're speaking.

M: Or maybe you're busy

E: Aha.

M: And people come andand

E: Bother you.

M: And bother you.

E: Yeah.

M: Okay.

E: So, interrupt.

M: Interrupt. Okay, some great words here in our dialogue and now we can listen to it again. This time it's gonna be a little bit slower

E: And you'll be able to understand the language a little bit better.


M: Okay, so, there're some great ways that you can ask someone for a favor, right?

E: Yeah, we wanna show you some really useful phrases for asking for help.

M: So, let's start withputting it together”.

Voice: Putting it together.

E: Let's listen to some different ways of how you can ask someone for a favor.

Voice: Example one.

A: May I get you to do me a favor? Can you carry this package and that suitcase for me?

Voice: Example two.

B: Can I ask you a favor? Can you just finish this report for me?

Voice: Example three.

C: Could you do me a favor and pass me that file.

M: Okay, so, those were great examples of asking for a favor.

E: Yeah.

M: In our dialogue we heardCan I ask you a favor”.

E: Uhu. But we could also sayCan I get you to do me a favor”.

M: Right, can I get you to do me a favor.

E: Uhu.

M: Also I could sayWill you do me a favor”.

E: Will you do me a favor.

M: Right. So, those are different ways of asking for a favor.

E: Let's say you want to ask someone for a favor, right?

M: Uhu.

E: But they're busy.

M: Right.

E: So, you'll need some phrases to help you do this.

M: Exactly, you need some phrases to interrupt somebody.

E: Aha.

M: Right? So, let's listen to some examples of what phrases you can use to begin to talk to someone.

E: Yeah, to interrupt them.

M: Okay.

Example 1: I hate to bother you, butI hate to bother you, but

Example 2: I'm sorry to bother you, butI'm sorry to bother you, but

Example 3: I don't mean to bother you, butI don't mean to bother you, but

M: Okay, so, those are really nice and polite ways of beginning to talk to someone.

E: Exactly, they're really useful at the office.

M: So, maybe you wanna talk to your boss, you knock on his door, kind of open it a little bit and sayI'm sorry to bother you, but I was wondering if you have time for meeting today”.

E: Uhu. Or you could say “I hate to bother you, but do you have time for a meeting today”.

M: Exactly.

E: Uhu.

M: So, those are great ways of starting up a conversation.

E: Yep.

M: And maybe setting it up to ask for a favor.

E: Uhu.

M: Right?

E: Uhu.

M: So, we can combine them. I could say “I hate to bother you, but can you do me a favor”.

E: Perfect.

M: Right?

E: Yeah, really useful.

M: So, thenthen you can ask someone for a favor.

E: Yep.

M: Okay, great stuff. So, I guess we can listen to our dialogue again.

E: Yeah, let's listen to our dialogue for the third time and this time I'm sure you'll understand it a lot better.


M: Alright, so, now you have all the vocabulary necessary the next time you need to ask someone for a favor.

E: Yes.

M: At the office, with your friends, with your family, anyone.

E: Well, everyone, we are out of time for today, but remember to visit our website at englishpod.com.

M: Exactly, at our website you'll find the script of the dialogue

E: Uhu.

M: And also you'll find intermediate lessons, upper intermediate and even advanced.

E: Yeah, exactly, our website is a great resource for learning. Uh, Marco and I are always there to answer you questions and we also have lots of helpful users, who answer your questions.

M: Exactly, so, don't miss out come to our website at englishpod.com and we'll see you there. [NOTE: to miss out = to lose an opportunity]

E: Until next time

M: Bye-Bye.

E: Bye.

Click on all unknown words in order to find out their translation, and so understand their meaning in the current context.
For translating phrases press Ctrl and click on multiple words.