I DIG ENGLISH - just a cool blog about English

I hope you enjoy reading this blog
half as much as I enjoy writing it for you.
Because I have a ball.


Saturday, June 30, 2012

Story of My Life: Don't Hate on a Lefty!

Hi guys!

I'm sure that after quite a long hiatus you were hoping for a blog post with a little bit more substance than me talking about myself ;) Well, life is not all hearts and roses, is it? :)

On a a side note, my close friend (Hi, Mick!!) reads the blog and she has told me that it offers a good insight into who I am in real life with one exception: in real life my jokes are even more cynical, so please keep that in mind when you judge me ;)

a hiatus – przerwa (a break)
substance – znaczenie (importance)
on a side note – na marginesie (by the way)
an insight into – wgląd (understanding)
to keep something in mind – pamiętać o czymś (to remember about something)

Moving on to today's topic. You might not like it or believe it but I am and have always been left-handed. I have already shared with you that I can't draw but I thought this priceless piece of information deserved a separate post. (I hope everybody feels the sarcasm here.) ;)

Left-handed people get all kinds of different reactions – from “you must be really intelligent to “no wonder you are so weird and slow on the uptake”.

no wonder – nic dziwnego (it's not surprising that)
slow on the uptake – ciężko kojarzący (If someone is slow on the uptake they understand things with difficulty)

If you're a lefty yourself – high five and if you're not – well, then you should read what follows carefully. If you're ambidextrous, go and brag somewhere else ;)

Being a lefty is hard work. Why? Because everything on this planet seems to be constructed for right-handed people – scissors, bags, cars, the idea of writing …

We, lefties, do manage of course, but it does drive us up the wall when, for the millionth time, we have to explain to you, right-handed people, why we wear our watches on our right wrist or why all our clothes face the right side of the closet.

what follows – co następuje ( the following … )
ambidextrous – oburęczny (able to use both hands equally well)
to brag – chwalić się (to speak too proudly about what you have done or what you own)
to manage – radzić sobie (to succeed)
to drive somebody up the wall – wkurzać kogoś (to annoy somebody)
to face – być zwróconym w stronę (be turned towards something)

Also, most people are right-handed and when they explain to you how some manual thing is done, they say how a right-handed person would do it. And then, when a lefty gives it a go and needs a little bit more time to figure it out, they call him slow. Now, how fair is it?

manual – ręczny (done with the hands)
to figure something out – rozpracować (to work something out)

Left-handed people often need to pretend that other people's jokes don't hurt their feelings:

Young student: How do you eat?
Me: What do you mean?
Young student: Do you hold the knife in you right hand and fork in your left hand, like normal people do?
Me: Yep, that's a pretty basic skill, even for me ;)
Young student: <disappointed>
Me: But I do hold the spoon in my left hand.
Young student: :)

What do you mean? – Co masz na myśli?

Lefties might feel bashful when the subject of handwriting pops up in a conversation:

Searching for a perfect font.

Friend: Or we could use your own signature instead.
Me: ?
Friend: And then make an electronic version of it. What's your handwriting like?
Me: Oh, we don't want to go there. I write like a five-year-old. You should see the signature on my ID.
Friend: Oh, ok. Never mind then.

bashful – wstydliwy zakłopotany (often feeling uncomfortable with other people and easily embarrassed; shy)
a font – czcionka
a signature – podpis
We don't want to go there. – To nie jest dobry pomysł/ Lepiej tego nie róbmy. (It's not a good idea/ Let's not do it.)
Never mind – mniejsza o to, nieważne (forget about it)

Left-handed people are often treated less seriously compared to people their age who are right-handed:

Someone: You look so cute and awkward when you write.
Me: Gee, thanks.

Someone: Oh, I think your left hand is dirty.
Me: It's alright. It's just smudged with ink. Happens all the time.

compared with – w porównaniu z
look awkward – wyglądać nieporadnie, niezdarnie (moving in a way that is not attractive)
gee – jejku (an expression of surprise or enthusiasm)
smudged with – ubrudzony, poplamiony, umazany (dirty from)
ink – tusz

At school, lefties might be given extra assignments to practice their handwriting to catch up with other students who apparently have made bigger progress since their i's are dotted and their t's are crossed while lefty handwriting sucks.

extra assignments – dodatkowe zadania/ ćwiczenia (extra homework/ work)
to catch up with somebody – nadgonić zaległości w stosunku do (to reach the same quality or standard as someone or something else)
since – ponieważ (because)
to dot the i's and cross the t's – dopracować szczegóły (to pay a great deal of attention to the details of something, especially when you are trying to complete a task)

Thank heavens, I was spared this indignity. What I didn't avoid, though, was extra scissors practice. Yes, you heard me correctly. Frigging scissors! One day my teacher noticed that my scissors handling skills were pathetic and she told me to practice those skills by cutting out pictures from magazines. Little did she know that I would never do it regularly. Before each deadline, I would sit down and spend an hour cutting out random pictures from the magazines from my grandma's stash with close to no effort ;)

thank heavens – dzięki bogu (thank god)
be spared something – komuś oszczędzono czegoś (when you are spared something you don't have to do or experience it)
indignity – upokorzenie/ zniewaga (embarrassment)
frigging – głupie (used to give more force to an expression of anger)
to handle something – obchodzić się z czymś ( to operate something)
pathetic – żenujące (embarrassing)
a stash – zapas/ kryjówka (a secret place where something is hidden or stored )
with close to no effort – prawie bez wysiłku (almost not trying)

But, fear not, there are some perks to being left-handed. One just should not hesitate to put them to good use. I myself always play the I'm left-handed card to get out of boring duties

fear not – nie obawiajcie się (don't worry)
perks – korzyści (advantages)
to hesitate – wahać się (to pause before you do or say something, often because you are uncertain or nervous about it )
to put something to good use – robić dobry użytek z czegoś (to use something to your advantage)
to play the ….. card – używać wymówki (to use an excuse)
get out of – wymigać się od robienia czegoś (to avoid doing something that you do not want to do, especially by giving an excuse)

- Can you wrap those presents, Karolina?
- I'm afraid I can't. I'm left-handed.

- Can you lay the table?
- Sorry, I can't. I'm left-handed. I'm always confused about where all the forks and knives go.

- Can you iron these clothes here?
- Sorry, I can't. The cord on the steam iron is on the wrong side.

to wrap – zapakować
a cord – przewód (a wire)
a steam iron – żelazko z nawilżaczem parowym

I guess, that's all I have to say on the subject ;)

I hope that after reading this post you will go and hug the lefties in your life and tell them how much you appreciate their effort ;)

See you in my next post!


Monday, June 18, 2012

My Digs: Pull a Kanye

Hi guys!


Let's face it. All we have been talking about is Euro 2012 and the performance of the Polish team. And I know what you're all going to say: "You're guilty yourself, Karolina.” And hell to the yes, I AM GUILTY.

I've been using the Euro 2012 conversation topic for all it's worth. I've been asking my students about their favourite players, favourite moments, favourite Euro 2012 TV commercials (mine is McDonald's') and their result predictions. (There's only so much you can say about the weather.) I've been blowing up your Facebook walls with seemingly innocent football-related hints and I've been glued to the TV screen, following the Euro 2012 coverage.

to ramble – paplać, pisać bez ładu i składu (to talk or write in a confused way, often for a long time)
performance – wyniki (how well/ badly something is done)
hell to the yes – żebyście wiedzieli, że tak (an emphatic 'yes')
for all it's worth – do granic możliwości (to the utmost of one's powers or ability)
There is only so much you can say about the weather. – Temat pogody w końcu się wyczerpie. (You can't talk about the weather all the time).
to blow up someone's Facebook wall – zostawiać dużo postów na czyjejś tablicy (to post a lot)
seemingly – na pozór
a hint – aluzja
coverage – relacja (the reporting of a particular important event or subject)

I don't know about you, but to me, there is something magical about Euro. It makes us all feel like we're seasoned football experts and everyone around is waiting, a notepad in hand, to hear what our take is on a particular match, goal or a player. In our football fantasy world, we gladly and patiently share our enlightened views with everyone (family, friends and complete strangers) and everywhere (in waiting rooms, local bakeries, parks and churches). Madness.

And that's why we should all be thankful that now at least part of the madness is gone. We are no longer a participant, just a co-host, and half of the burden is finally off our shoulders. We can all sit back, relax and enjoy the championship.

seasoned – doświadczony (experienced)
a notepad – notes
my take on something – pogląd (someone's opinion on/ about)
enlightened – oświecone (showing understanding, acting in a positive way, and not following old-fashioned or false beliefs)
burden – ciężar
to sit back – usiąść wygodnie (to sit comfortably with your back against the back of a chair)
(here's) my two cents – wtrącać swoje trzy grosze


Now, let's move on to the actual topic of today's post, shall we? :)

I would like to discuss a very informal American English phrase: to PULL A

  • It means: to behave like; to act in a similar way to someone.
  • It can refer to a real person or a fictitious character.
  • Names and/ or surnames are most often capitalised, but they might be written in lower case too.

fictitious – fikcyjny
capitalised – pisany wielką literą (pull a Kanye)
in lower case – pisany małą literą (pull a kanye)


Do you believe Oprah would pull a Kim Kardashian and get married on TV?

I kinda wanna pull a Britney Spears and shave my head right now.

Miley Cyrus is crying for help (or at least attention). Why else would she pull a Lindsay Lohan and flash her private parts to the paparazzi for the whole world to see.

If you wear a skimpy dress, use fashion tape to avoid pulling a Janet Jackson.

If I don't find a perfect dress by this weekend, I will have to pull a Kate Middleton and wear the same dress I wore to the last wedding.

If Natalie Portman doesn't win Best Actress for Black Swan I'm gonna drive over to the Kodak Theatre and protest. Maybe climb up on stage and pull a Kanye West.

Just please don't pull a Mark Zuckerberg and steal my ideas and leave me high and dry. That is all that I ask.

why else – z jakich innych powodów (for what other reasons)
to flash – obnażyć (to show one's naked body in public)
skimpy – kusa (showing a lot of body)
fashion tape – dwustronna taśma (double-sided tape)
to leave someone high and dry – zostawić kogoś w trudnej sytuacji (to do something which is not at all convenient for someone and put them in a very difficult situation


Dude, don't pull a Lebron James and abandon me like that.

If Bynum is going to pull a Rodman and take off his shirt, he better be ripped.

I'm gonna pull a Tiger Woods and cheat on this test.

to abandon – pozostawiać (to leave)
ripped – napakowany, umięśniony (muscular)
to cheat on someone – zdradzać kogoś
to cheat on a test – ściągać 


Oh, I could curl up here and pull a Sleeping Beauty and sleep for a 100 years.

Mondays are definitely my “challenging” days every week – I'd much rather pull a Garfield and go back to bed and sleep until Tuesday!

I'm going insane. I want to pull a Simba and run away to live Hakuna Matata style with a warthog and a meerkat

Uh, oh! Something is going down! I'm gonna pull a scooby doo and solve this mystery.

to curl up – zwinąć się (w kłębek) (to sit or lie in a position with your arms and legs close to your body)
to go insane – oszaleć (to go crazy)
a warthog – guziec
a meerkat – surykatka
to go down – dziać się (happen)

That's all for now :)

Have a great week everyone!

See you in my next post!


Thursday, June 7, 2012

Girly Talk: Dresses

Hi girls and boys (?)!!!


Now, that must be really desperate of you, boys, to be reading this post because you know pretty well what's coming, don't you? But, if you've said to yourselves: “Hell, yeah, I'm going to deal with the subject and read this post just so I can learn a bit of English, then more power to you! :) Oh, and just so you know, dresses are the ones that are supposed to cover the upper AND lower body as opposed to skirts, which cover a person from their waist down. If you still don't get it, here's a picture that might help you out a bit:

to deal with – pogodzić się z czymś, zaakceptować coś (to accept)
just so I can – tylko po to, żeby (in order to)
more power to you – gratuluję/ podziwiam (well done! an expression of praise or admiration for someone's success or bravery)
just so you know – wiedzcie, wiedz! (for your information)
as opposed to – w przeciwieńswie do (in contrast to)
from the waist down – od pasa w dół


To be completely honest with you, girls, I'm having serious reservations about writing this post. Why? I'm a jeans and a t-shirt kind of girl (and a blazer girl too). That makes my mornings unproblematic (There's no colour that doesn't go with denim.), but that definitely doesn't make me an authority on fashion and styling. But fear not – this post is going to be more about description than styling advice.

Some of you might think that I need exorcism with my no-dresses policy but, again, don't worry. I do own a few dresses. They're reserved for special occasions, when it's expected of me to look more polished and ladylike :)

Let's talk dresses now, shall we?

to have reservations about something – mieć obawy (to have doubts)
an authority on – autorytet (an expert on a subject)
styling – stylizacja
fear not – nie bójcie się (do not worry)
a policy – zasada (a rule)
it's expected of me – oczekuje się ode mnie (when people expect me to)
polished – w sposób nienaganny, zadbany (smart)


Body con dresses, also called bandage dresses, are figure-hugging dresses that are worn to show off female curves. They also happen to be very in this season.

figure-hugging – dopasowane, obcisłe (tight)
curves – krągłości, kształty (the shape of a woman's body)
in – modne (fashionable)


High low dresses have a hemline that is shorter at the front and longer at the back, so the dress hits you above the knees from the front but it can be mid-calf or floor-length from the back.

a hemline – długość lub rąbek, brzeg (the length of a skirt or dress, or the lower edge of a skirt or dress)
mid-calf – do połowy łydki
floor-length – do ziemi


Peplum dresses have extra fabric around the waist that forms a ruffle. They're very on trend this season.

fabric – materiał (material)
a ruffle – falbana
on trend – modne (fashionable)


Skater dresses, as the name suggests, are similar to the dresses that are worn by female ice-skaters. They're quite flattering – they are fitted on top, cinched in at the waist and they flare at the skirt.

flattering – twarzowe (making someone look good)
fitted – dopasowane (tight)
cinched (in) at the waist – zwężające się w talii (with an accentuated waist)
to flare – poszerzać się (to widen, to loosen)



Cutout dresses are perfect for girls who want to show a bit of skin through cutouts.

a cutout – wycięcie


With their buttons, collars and cuffs, shirt dresses look just like oversized shirts. Next time you need to look super fab and stylish, raid your boyfriend's closet :)

a collar – kołnierzyk
a cuff – mankiet
fab – fabulous – świetnie, olśniewająco (great)
to raid – zrobić nalot ;) (to attack a place suddenly)


Tulip dresses are close-fitting on top, whereas at the bottom they resemble a tulip that hasn't opened yet.

close-fitting – dopasowane (tight)
to resemble – przypominać (to look like)


Maxi dresses are my favourite. They're floor-length and flowy. They can be worn loose or cinched in with a belt.

flowy – luźno spływająca ku dołowi
loose – luźne 


Halter dresses are perfect when you want to go with bare arms. They feature a piece of fabric that runs from the front of the dress around the back of the neck.

bare – odkryte (uncovered)
to feature – wyróżniać się czymś (to include someone or something as an important part)


Empire waist dresses have a fitted bodice that ends just below the bust and a loose-fitting skirt. The high waistline is very flattering – it helps accentuate the bust area and hide any trouble spots that we might have ;)

a bodice – stan (the upper part of a woman's dress)
a bust – biust
loose-fitting – luźne
a waistline – talia 


As opposed to empire waist dresses, drop waist dresses have a very low waistline that hits at the hips. Such dresses create an impression of height by lengthening the torso.

hips – biodra
to lengthen – wydłużać (to make something (seem) longer)
a torso – tułów


Pencil dresses are body-hugging and restrictive. There definitely should be an instruction manual on how to walk with every dress of this kind! :)

body-hugging – dopasowane (tight)
restrictive – utrudniające chodzenie, ograniczające (making it difficult to walk)
an instruction manual – instrukcja obsługi

Hope you enjoyed. There sure are more dress styles than those 12, but if you're into fashion, I guess, it's a good start.

Have a happy a healthy weekend and see you in my next post!