In this episode, Owain and Mike are talking about their own language experiences. Find out what languages they speak and what languages they're learning. They waffle on a bit so you won't get to much help with learning tips, but you will hear something about their shared past!
To prepare you to listen and help you check your understanding, think about these questions:
Listen to the end to hear the answers.
Write in if you want to ask us a question about this chat or just make a comment.
May 18, 2020
In this episode, our regular raconteurs, Owain & Mike, are back for a bit of lockdown loquacity. Find out what they've been doing while they've had to stay at home.
The conversation took place about 3 weeks ago, but is still highly relevant to our current situation, even though the rules in the UK have now changed for the better.
Here are some questions to help guide your listening during the first half of the conversation - answers at the end of the episode:
UK Guidelines for behaviour during the Coronavirus pandemic:
In this episode, Mike talks to published author and TED Talk Speaker Tom Graham about his sustainable tourism project, Make a Difference. They talk a bit about Tom's inspiration behind the venture, what challenges lie ahead in the Covid-19 era, and an idea of how the Philippines might avoid getting left behind in the global future.
Here is Tom's TED talk, Genius of the Poor
And Make A Difference website https://madtravel.org/
In this episode, Owain interviews his friend Mike MacDonald about music and how he's playing, listening and watching during these strange times. They talk a little bit about what life under lockdown is like for Mike and why it's not really affecting is ability to perform.
Find out how you can watch Mike and his friends play and listen to one of the tracks from his band's first album.
Also, we have set you a challenge. Listen right to the end to hear the launch of a new virtual music project and try to answer the question I ask you. Write in with your answers and we will offer you a free online English lesson with Mike or me.
Links to Mike:
Links to Gary:
Link to the band, Dapper:
In this episode, Mike and Owain are back to their waffling best with a short chat about baking. Listening to this exchange between two brilliant culinary minds will help you...
Hold on a minute! I hear you say. Yes, just joking. Just like everyone else at the moment, the guys are struggling to come up with things to do and have turned to baking as a means of connecting with family and students alike. Find out more and listen till the end for a brief analysis of the conversation!
In this episode, Owain talks to his friend Lorenzo who is in Madrid. They discuss what it is like to be in a small flat with a family during this crisis and how they are dealing with lockdown (a state of isolation or restricted access instituted as a security measure).
The actual conversation is about 13 minutes long. At the end, there is extra help with some of the vocabulary used in the conversation.
In this episode, we welcome back Thom to talk about learning languages. He talks to Mike about technology, immersion learning, living abroad, distance learning outside a classroom and their own personal language learning stories.
They talk about so many things in this rambling conversation, in fact, that they ask for your help at the end!
In this episode, Mike talks to Desta Haile who is a professional musician, language teacher and founder of the language learning tool Languages Through Music.
Desta tells Mike how she came up with the idea of Languages Through Music and how it has been a source of joy and inspiration for her learning about languages and culture.
Have you ever listened to music and wondered what it is they are singing about? Next time you listen to a song, bear this in mind, the artist is communicating something to you behind those sounds, feelings, ideas, sadness, joy!
Here is the link to Desta's website - listen to this episode then check it out! www.languagesthroughmusic.com
And here are the artists whose songs are played in this episode:
Amadou and Mariam - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7fxL-sxN7fo
Zeca Pagodinho - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbK5izUxC-k
Cesaria Evora - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DeLUGn7qYPa
In this episode, Mike is in Slovenia and is talking to his friend Thom about the pub. They talk about what the pub means to people in general, how pubs have changed over the years and what it's like to go as a non-drinking, relatively large bearded man.
In this episode, Owain starts the discussion on how to use the Engish Waffle. He talks about who the podcast is aimed at and why it is different from other English learning resources. He starts to explain why the focus is on listening to real conversations and starts to give some examples to help clarify what this means and why it is important.
In this episode, Owain's sister Laura is back, this time talking about her take on 'work-life balance' and her observations on how it works. We talk about what it means, her job, and how she manages to create some sort of balance between working and bringing up her family.
This is a special episode in which Mike talks to three guests who are visiting him in London. They talk about the sights and some of the things they have done during their stay.
Have you ever been to London? What do you think is iconic about this city? What represents it? Think about it for a moment before you listen to some more English Waffle!
Other links: https://thelondonlanguagexperience.co.uk/
This is a guest episode with Owain's sister, Laura, who's visiting from abroad. We discuss insects and diseases, enthusiasm and cynicism, and the difference between workplaces in the US and the UK.
We also briefly discuss her plans for the future.
Your usual conversationalists are back this week - that's Mike and me - and we're talking about the bizarre world of Brits and their pets. Mike gives us some interesting, and in some cases, terrifying facts about Brits' love affair with animals. Be prepared for some PETrifying statistics.
Here's our second conversation with John. We talk about trains (of course!), national stereotypes, and his plans to travel from the UK to Moscow and through Russia.
Owain's back this week with another guest. It's John the Joiner who's talking about his passion for travelling by train. Find out where he's been on the train and why he doesn't just jump on a plane when he wants to go somewhere on holiday.
The Caledonian Sleeper: https://www.sleeper.scot/
Mike reveals his roots as he talks to his brother-in-law, Dave, about Irishness. They discuss culture, questionnaires, and some Irishisms, words and expressions only Irish people use.
In the first episode of 2020, Mike & Owain talk about resolutions, talking to strangers, and learning a new language. They also offer some suggestions on how to use the podcast. We hope this will be useful for regular listeners and newcomers who are interested in making the most out of the project.
Mike's with two members of his family for this episode and they talk about gymnastics, acting on stage, and someone's passion for football. Find out who they are in our final conversation of 2019.
Mike & Owain catch up with each other this time to talk about what they like about Christmas. They talk about crackers, presents and Santa, before wishing us all a Merry Christmas!
He's back! Our very own martial arts expert, Doug 'pressure point' Wilson, is talking to Owain about why he got into Ju Jitsu and how it is learnt. Does it have anything in common with learning a language? Find out in Part 2 of this interview.
In this episode, we have a new guest. Owain interviews his brother Doug about the 'original martial art', Ju Jitsu. Techniques, motivation, and the spirit of the art are discussed and Owain gets more than he bargained for as Doug demonstrates his knowledge of human anatomy.
Owain and Mike waffle on in this episode about the news, footballers, and what you might find down the toilet bowl.
Jay talks to Mike again and reveals some more interesting things about Indian English!
Mike's friend Jay explains why English should really be called...Indian?!
Owain reveals his confusion over mealtimes and Mike tries to remember when he had tea as a child.
Every word or phrase has a story behind it, place names in particular. Enjoy listening to Owain & Mike talking about the interesting place names they've come across, but don't expect to learn too much about where they come from or any particularly useful information!
How bad is a banana? Well, we're not going to be able to help you answer that one, but you will find out how green Mike and Owain are as they discuss, among other things, their results on the WWF carbon footprint calculator which you can find here: https://footprint.wwf.org.uk/#/
Another chat from Leicester where the guys provide a perfect analysis of the perfidiousness of perfectionsim, especially when it comes to learning languages.
Owain and Mike record from the Leicestershire countryside and discuss green fingers, therapy, dogs and dating.
You know those things that get on your nerves a little more than they should. Well, that's what this episode is about.
In this episode, we discuss different attitudes towards body hair. And Mike tells a story about meeting a hairy pair of legs on the train to work.