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【VOA】我们要时刻严阵以待

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发表于 7 天前 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式


Now, Words and Their Stories from VOA Learning English.

这里是VOA《词汇掌故》节目。

On this program, we explore words and expressions that Americans use in everyday conversations.

我们的节目旨在探求美国人日常交际中的单词和表达。

Often, some of the most common expressions were first used many years ago, when life in the United States was very different than it is now.

通常,一些最常用的表达第一次被人们使用都是在多年前。那时候的美国生活和现在截然不同。

Today, let's consider the term circle the wagons. A great way to show your loyalty to a group of people is to protect them. One way to do that is to circle the wagons.

今天,让我们来研究下短语“circle the wagons(严阵以待)”。展现一个人对于集体忠心的一个最好方式就是保护他们。保护的方式之一就是严阵以待。

"Circle the wagons" or "circle your wagons" means that members of a team or group must work together to protect themselves from some outside danger. Generally, they prepare for a possible attack.

“circle the wagons”或者“circle your wagons”意思是团队或者团体成员必须协同合作以御外来危险。一般来说,他们是为潜在的袭击做准备。

Some language experts say this expression comes from the time when many Americans were moving away from the East Coast to what is now the western United States.

一些语言学家说这个表达出自美国人从东海岸迁移到今天的美国西部地区的时候。

During the 1800s, many settlers traveled west from the East Coast in covered, horse-drawn wagons. At night, or when threatened during the day, the wagons would stop moving. The drivers then would line up all the carriages in a circle. This was a way of protecting the settlers from attack. They would keep their cattle and other animals within the circle.

19世纪期间,许多移民从东海岸乘坐有篷马车向西迁徙。夜晚或者当白天遭遇危险的时候,马车就不再前行。车夫们会将马车围城一圈。这是一种保护移民们免受袭击的做法。他们会让牛或者其他动物待在马车围成的圈里。

Although "circle the wagons" was first used in the 19th century, don't let it stop you from using it today.

尽管“circle the wagons”在19世纪才开始使用,但这并不影响这个短语在今天的使用。

You can circle your wagons any time you feel you need to protect the interests of your group: from a sporting events to a political campaign to a project at work.

你可以在任何你觉得你的的团体的利益需要保护的时候严阵以待:从一场体育赛事到一场政治竞选活动,到工作中的一个项目。

Circling your wagons means you are in a defensive position.

“circle your wagons”意味着你处于一种防御状态。

Now, if circling your wagons is a way of protecting your group, then a circular firing squad is just the opposite.

如果说“circle your wagons”是一种保护自己团队的方式,那么“a circular firing squad”则刚好相反。

A firing squad is one way to carry out an execution. In the military, soldiers form a straight line as they prepare to fire at the prisoner. If the soldiers are in a circle, they would shoot each other. So, a "circular firing squad" is a group that comes together to fight a common enemy or opponent. But in the end, disputes among the group's own members do more damage than the enemy.

“a firing squad”是执行死刑的一种方式。在军队里,当士兵要对囚犯执行死刑的时候,他们会站成一排。如果士兵们站成一圈,他们会射杀到彼此。所以,“circular firing squad”是一个团队与共同的敌人或对手作战。但是最后,团队成员之间的内部纠纷对团队造成的损害比敌人造成的还大。

Americans often use this expression when talking about politics. A political party is rarely able to get all of its members to agree on every issue. And when they disagree on big issues, they can sometimes fight amongst themselves.

美国人在谈论政治的时候经常使用这个表达。一个政党很少能做到让所有成员在每一个问题上都能全部同意。当他们在大问题方面有分歧的时候,他们有时彼此之间能打起来。

Some other terms for a circular firing squad are "self-destructive internal conflicts" and "mutual recriminations."

和“circular firing squad”意思相关的一些其他表达有self-destructive internal conflicts(自毁性内部冲突)和mutual recriminations(相互指责)。

"Mutual" describes something that two or more groups or people share or have in common. For example, mutual respect is when people respect each other.

“mutual”描述的是两个人或者更多团体或者许多人共享或者共有的事物。例如,互相尊重(mutual respect)指的是两个人彼此尊重。

A "recrimination" is an angry statement in which you accuse or criticize a person who has accused or criticized you. Children on the playground often use recriminations.

“recrimination”指的是你生气地谴责或者批评一个谴责或者评判过你的人。游乐场的孩子们经常互相指责。

"You're stupid!"

“你太蠢了!”

"No, I'm not! YOU'RE stupid!"

“不,我不笨!是你蠢!”

"Am not!"

“我不笨!”

"Are, too!"

“我们都不笨!”

Now, let's hear these expressions being used in a short conversation.

现在,让我们来听一段使用了这些表达的短对话。

Well, the meeting at work today was ... interesting.

嗯,今天的工作会议······真有意思。

That's one way to describe it. I call it ... brutal. As soon as the chief said "budget cuts," people started circling their wagons.

那是这个会议的一种说法。我觉得这个会议······残酷。领导一说“削减预算”,大家就一副严阵以待的样子。

That's understandable. If there is going to be less money, she might cancel some projects. So, everyone wants to protect their people and their projects.

这可以理解。如果资金变少了,领导也许会取消一些项目。那么,大家自然想保护自己团队的人和项目。

That's true. But we have to remember that we're all working for the same business. Our bigger goal as a company is the same.

确实是这样。但我们必须记住我们在为共同的事业打拼,从公司的角度看,我们的大目标是一样的。

You're right. We don't want to turn into a circular firing squad. Internal disputes are an easy way to destroy the company.

你说得对。我们不想因为内部分歧而导致公司利益受损。内部纠纷极容易毁掉一个公司。

Yes. And that is exactly what our competition wants.

是的。那正是我们的对手所期望的局面。

And that's it for Words and Their Stories.

这就是今天的《词汇掌故》的全部内容了。

Hopefully, in work and in life, you circle your wagon more often than get involved in a circular firing squad.

希望在工作和生活当中,你更多时候是保持着严阵以待的状态,而不是为内部互掐所累。

I'm Jonathan Evans.

我是乔纳森·埃文斯。

I'm Anna Matteo.

我是安娜·马特奥。



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