Unit 6
Text A
Pre-reading Activities

  1. You're going to hear a radio news report about the death of a student. As you listen to it, you'll be expected to fill in the missing information from the chart below. Before you listen, use your imagination to predict what the missing information might be.
A) Who was involved? Yohashi Yatsumoto, a student, aged Hiro Takeda, , aged
B) What happened? was killed when
C) Where and when?
d) Additional details:


  2. What feelings do you think will be caused by the death reported in the passage ? how must the family and friends of the dead student feel? What about the person responsible? What do you think the police should do?
Every 23 Minutes
Linda Weltner
My husband and I went to a funeral a few weeks ago. The man we honored had not been ill and will never grow old. He was killed in his car on a Sunday night, driving home along a divided highway.
It was an ordinary evening, no blacker than any other, when a car coming in the other direction went out of control, broke through the guard rail, and hit two other cars before smashing head on into his. According to the newspaper, the driver, who was returning from a wedding, seemed puzzled. "I only had two bottles of beer and a cocktail," she is reported to have said.
A wedding.
Followed by a funeral.
I wish she could have been there to see all the lives her act has changed forever, the wife, and four children, the extended family, the hundreds and hundreds of friends who sat in painful silence, listening to words which barely touched the depths of their grief.
Strange to think that, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, this happens in America every 23 minutes.
Somebody drinks.
Somebody drives.
Somebody dies.
And other lives are altered forever, though sometimes the changes may be invisible to a casual observer. By chance, the day before the funeral I ran into a longtime acquaintance while shopping. He commented on my crutches. I asked if he had ever broken his leg.
"Uh, I have a long rod in this thigh," he said, "from a car accident two weeks after I came back from Vietnam."
"That's ironic. To leave a war zone and then get injured," I teased him. "You're lucky it wasn't worse."
"Well, my wife was killed in the crash and so was the wife of the driver," he said uncomfortably. "We were hit by a drunk."
I've known this man for years, yet suddenly realized there was a whole chapter of his life he'd never mentioned. I asked and discovered he'd remained in the hospital seven weeks, and that all that time he'd known his wife was dead. It was hard to know where to go from there, for there are questions you can't put to someone in a casual conversation ? questions like, "How could you bear it?" or "What did you do about wanting revenge?"
I wish I knew the answers to those questions. I wish I could offer those answers to the woman who, overwhelmed by grief, could barely walk as she followed her husband's coffin from the church.
Every 23 minutes, who dies?
A mother who will never comfort the child who needs her. A woman who will never know how very much her friends depended on her. A man whose contributions to his community would have made a difference. A wife whose husband cannot picture the future without her.
Every 23 minutes, who dies?
A son who involuntarily abandons his parents in their old age. A father who can never acknowledge his children's accomplishments. A daughter who can never take back her angry words. A sister who will never be her sister's maid of honor.
Every 23 minutes, who dies?
A brother who will not be there to hold his newborn niece. A friend whose encouragement is gone forever. A bride-to-be who will never say her vows. An aunt whose family will fragment and fall apart.
Every 23 minutes, who dies?
A child who will never fulfill his early promise. An uncle who leaves his children without guidance and support. A grandmother whose husband must now grow old alone. A lover who never had a chance to say how much he cared.
Every 23 minutes.
A void opens.
Someone looks across the table at a vacant chair; climbs into an empty bed, feels the pain of no voice, no touch, no love. Where there was once intimacy and contact, now there is only absence and despair.
Every 23 minutes
A heart breaks.
Someone's pain shatters the confines of her body, leaking out in tears, exploding in cries, defying all efforts to soothe the despair. Sleep offers no escape from the nightmare of awakening. And morning brings only the irreversibility of loss.
Every 23 minutes.
A dream ends.
Someone's future blurs and goes blank as anticipation fades into nothingness. The phone will not ring, the car will not pull up to the house. The weight of tomorrow becomes unbearable in a world in which all promises have been broken by force.
Every 23 minutes.
Somebody wants to run. Somebody wants to hide.
Somebody is left with hate. Somebody wants to die.
And we permit this to go on.
Every 23 minutes.
(771 words)
New Words
funeral
n. a ceremony of burying or burning a dead person 葬礼
* cocktail
n. 鸡尾酒
painful
a. causing an upsetting or unpleasant feeling; causing a feeling of discomfort in a particular part of the body 令人痛苦的;疼痛的
crutch
n. T字形拐杖
rod
n. a long thin pole or bar 杆;棒条
* thigh
n. the top part of the human leg 大腿
zone
n. an area of particular qualities 地带,地区
injure
vt. hurt; offend 伤害,损害
injury
n. (to) harm, damage to a living thing (对生物的)伤害;损害
drunk
n. a person who habitually drinks too much alcohol 酗酒者,醉汉
a. overcome by drinking alcoholic liquor; (fig.) filled with excitement and joy 醉酒的;(喻)陶醉的
* revenge
n. (for, on) punishment given to sb. in return for harm done to oneself 复仇;报复
vt. do sth. to get satisfaction for (an offence, etc.); avenge (sb.) 报…之仇;为…报仇
involuntarily
ad. not (done) from choice or intention 非自愿地;非出于本意地
maid
n.
  1. a female servant 女仆,保姆

  2. (obsolete usage): a girl or (young) woman who is not married 少女,年轻女子
niece
n. 侄女;甥女
vow
n. a solemn promise or declaration 誓言
vt. declare or swear solemnly 立誓
fragment
vi. break or separate into small pieces 破碎;碎裂
n. a small piece from a larger whole 碎片
guidance
n. guiding or being guided; direction 引导;指导
vacant
a.
  1. (of a place or space) empty; not filled with anything 空的;未被占用的

  2. (of a job) not at present filled 空缺的
intimacy
n. the state of being in a close relationship 亲密;密切
intimate
a.
  1. (of people) close in relationship 亲密的;密切的

  2. personal; private 个人的;私人的
despair
n. complete lack or loss of hope 绝望
vi. (of) have lost all hope 绝望;失去希望
* shatter
vt. break (sth.) suddenly into small pieces; smash (sth.) 粉碎;砸碎
confines
n. (fml) limits; borders; boundaries (正式)界限;边界;范围
leak
v.
  1. (使)渗漏

  2. make known (使)泄露出去
n. 漏隙;漏出物
* defy
vt. disobey; fight against; show no fear or respect for 违抗;蔑视
* defiance
n. behaviour showing one's disobedience to sb. or ignorance of sb. 违抗;蔑视
* soothe
vt. make less angry or upset; calm or comfort 抚慰;使平静
nightmare
n. an unpleasant and terrible dream 恶梦
irreversibility
n. a state of things which cannot be turned back, changed or improved 不可挽回;不可逆转
fade
vi.
  1. (away) disappear or die gradually 逐渐消失

  2. lose strength, colour, freshness, etc. 衰颓;褪色;凋谢
Phrases and Expressions
go out of control
be no longer under control 失去控制
smash into
hit forcefully against 猛地撞在…
head on
with the head or front parts meeting violently 迎面地,正面地
by chance
by accident; unintentionally 偶然地;意外地
comment on
make a remark or give an opinion on 评论;就…发表意见
make a difference
有影响;起作用
take back one's words
admit that one was wrong in what one has said 收回说过的话
maid of honor
首席女傧相
[n.]-to-be
未来的…
fade into
gradually disappear and become (sth. of no importance) 逐渐消失而变成(无足轻重的东西)
pull up [to/at/in front of a place]
(of vehicles) drive up to and stop at (车辆)到达,驶入
Proper Names
Linda Weltner
琳达?韦尔特纳(女子名)
 

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