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English 101: Exercise [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2009-11-2 22:00:16 |Display all floors
I have been in this line of work for quite some time now but hey, this I find useful and a really good reminder on how these are supposed to work.  Thought to share with you.

Try the following samples.


Sample #1

Penny: This coffee is really terrible, Peggy.
Peggy: I couldn't agree more.
Question: What does Peggy mean?

(A) She would like more coffee.
(B) She thinks Penny should complain.
(C) She also dislikes the coffee.
(D) She thinks the coffee is acceptable.


Sample #2

Venus: This is just about the worst coffee I've ever had.
Derek: I couldn't agree less.
Question: What does Derek mean?

(A) He would like more coffee.
(B) He thinks Venus should complain.
(C) He also dislikes the coffee.
(D) He thinks the coffee does not taste bad.


Sample #3

Milky: Hey Sandy, I heard you tried that new Japanese restaurant around the corner. How was it?
Sandy: Couldn't have been better!
Question: What does Sandy mean?

(A) She has not been to the restaurant yet.
(B) She enjoyed the restaurant very much.
(C) She thinks that some of the menu items are better than others.
(D) She plans to eat at the restaurant soon.


Sample #4

Ivy: Joanne, they said you'd seen the play already. What'd you think of it?
Joanne: I've seen better!
Question: What does Joanne mean?

(A) The play is not as impressive as other plays she has seen.
(B) She was not able to see the play.
(C) It was difficult to enjoy the play.
(D) Her eyes are troubling her.


Sample #5

Erica: Edward, how are you feeling today?
Edward: Couldn't be better!
Question: What does Edward mean?

(A) He feels great.
(B) He was still not feeling well.
(C) He’s feeling worse than before.
(D) He feels bad Erica talked to him.


Answer keys plus explanation will be available on Friday, November 6th.
Good luck!!!

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Rank: 4

Post time 2009-11-6 20:26:36 |Display all floors

English 101 ANSWERS

WHY ARE THESE CONFUSING?

These questions are confusing mainly because they introduce two or three elements to think of. In other words, the overall meaning of the statement is dependent on evaluating one thing in relation to another. The trickiest ones are those that use a negative such as not in the sentence. But don't worry, if you have a hard time with these questions, it means simply that you are normal--the human brain, no matter what language it is familiar with, is not wired to process negatives and double negatives quickly.

Let's look at a "progression" of statements to put these ideas into context.
Statement: I feel very good today.
Meaning: I feel very good today.
Discussion: Easy, right? Right! This is a very normal sentence for us, for our brains, and for our language.

Okay, let's make this one a bit harder...
Statement: I feel better today than I felt yesterday.
Meaning: My mood today > My mood yesterday. Or, today is good; yesterday was not so good.
Discussion: Still easy, right? Right! We are comparing moods for two days--the mood for today is better than that of yesterday. So far, so good, right?

Statement: Today I could feel better.
Meaning: I could feel better today. Therefore, today my mood is not perfect, since there is still some room for improvement.
Discussion: Getting a little bit harder now, but if you understand the sentence "I could feel better", then you're almost there! Remember your modals--could is often used to express the idea that you have the ability to do something, even if you haven't done it.

Statement: Today I could not feel better.
Meaning: Today I feel perfect.
Discussion: There is no more room for improvement. Having a better mood is not possible. Therefore, I can say that today, my mood is perfect. Therefore, I could not feel better today.

REMINDER:

The key here is to realize that when we hear something like "I could not feel better" or "I could not feel worse," we are saying that we are already at some limit--either the minimum or the maximum.

So, if I say that I could not feel better, I'm feeling "perfect," (okay, that's not really possible in real life, but we're talking about language here). And if I'm sick with the flu, I just lost my job, and my dog just bit me, I can say "I could not feel worse," meaning that I'm already at the limit.

Keep in mind that if you're all the way at the bottom, you can't get any lower. And if you're already at the top, you can't get any higher!

ANSWER KEYS:

|#1 C|#2 D|#3 B|#4 A|#5 A|


Happy weekend you all! :)

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