Why some people are always late 一些人約會總是遲到的原因

The traffic was awful!

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每個人身邊總有那麼幾個愛遲到的朋友,他們姍姍來遲背後的原因是什麼?是因為他們不講禮貌或不懂得體諒別人嗎?一些研究表明,事實並不僅僅是我們想象的那麼簡單。本集《隨身英語》探討這個惱人的習慣背後可能存在的深層原因。

課文內容

Vocabulary: Timekeeping 詞匯: 守時

We all have one, don’t we? A friend who’s always late. The one who turns up for coffee a full half hour after the appointed time. The one who seems to be forever ‘stuck in traffic’. The dear pal who sends a message saying “Sorry, bit delayed”, when they’re already 20 minutes behind schedule. I mean, what kind of a friend is that? Or just maybe, if you’re really honest, this persistently tardy individual is actually you yourself?

Either way, if you’re on the receiving end, lateness can be extremely irritating, even infuriating. How on earth can people be so inconsiderate

Well, recent research suggests that there might be more to this than simple rudeness. Psychologists from Washington University believe people perceive time differently. Their study gave participants a specific amount of time in which to complete a task, and even provided them with a clock. Despite this, some people became so engrossed in the activity that they completely lost track of time and forgot to check the clock.

According to psychologist Dr Susan Krauss Whitborne, from University of Masachussetts Amherst, this is like when we scroll through our social media feed and think only five minutes have elapsed, when in fact twenty have slipped by. Does that feel familiar? She writes in Psychology Today that those who were better at clock-checking were therefore “less reliant on their potentially flawed internal timekeeper.” So, what about the reasons beyond our faulty inner clocks?

Well, our personality also plays a role. Laura Clarke writes for BBC Capital that the less punctual among us often share traits such as “optimism, low levels of self-control, anxiety, or a penchant for thrill-seeking”.Why optimism, you ask? Optimists tend to overestimate how much they can achieve and underestimate problems – which means they don’t account for the long traffic jam on the way to meet you for that coffee.

Here’s another thought: maybe language is to blame? The English phrase ‘to be fashionably late’ is used to describe the optimum time to arrive at an event. If you’re too early, you can appear overly eager, but if you’re a bit late you seem cool and sophisticated. The problem is, what one person regards as fashionably late, another may view as plain impolite. So, next time you have coffee, do try to be on time.

詞匯表

the appointed time 約好的時間
stuck in traffic 堵在路上
behind schedule 遲于約定的時間
persistently 一次又一次地
tardy 遲到的,行動緩慢的
on the receiving end 等人的那一方
infuriating 令人憤怒的
inconsiderate 不為他人著想的,不體諒別人的
perceive 看待
engrossed 全身貫注的
lose track of time 忘記時間
feed (社交媒體上的)狀態更新
elapse (時間)流逝
slip by 不知不覺地流逝
timekeeper (個人)對時間的把握
punctual 守時的
a penchant for (擁有)…的嗜好,傾向
thrill-seeking 追求刺激的
overestimate 高估
to be fashionably late “約會故意遲到一會兒”,以顯示自己處事老練而時髦

測驗與練習 

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。 

1. Why are optimists more likely to be late? 

2. Which is stronger: irritating or infuriating.    

3. Is it a good idea to be ‘fashionably late’ for a job interview?    

4. Which two adjectives describe something that has a problem or defect?    

5. True or false: According to the article, people who are more punctual have better inner clocks.    

2.
請你在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單詞填入句子的空格處

1. I need to take control of my life. The days keep ______ and I never achieve anything.

overestimating      elapsed      losing track of time      slipping by

2. Luke is always ______. I’ve never seen him be late for anything.

tardy      punctual      persistent      fashionably late

3. Don’t ______ Lucy. She might be quiet, but she’s extremely professional.

underestimate      overestimate      misunderestimate      overhear

4. We had so much fun last night that we completely ______ and got home very late.

lose track of time      lost track of times      tracked lost time      lost track of time

5. I don’t like ______ the receiving end when he’s angry. He can get very aggressive.

being      to be      being on      being on the

答案
 

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。 

1. Why are optimists more likely to be late? 
Optimists are more likely to underestimate potential problems and overestimate their ability to achieve things within a period of time.

2. Which is stronger: irritating or infuriating.
Infuriating is stronger. It is related to the word ‘furious’, which means extremely angry. If you are ‘irritated’, you are only annoyed. 

3. Is it a good idea to be ‘fashionably late’ for a job interview?
No. If you are late for any job interview you will be seen as unprofessional. In certain contexts it’s OK to be slightly late, for example at some parties.

4.Which two adjectives describe something that has a problem or defect?
Flawed and faulty.

5. True or false: According to the article, people who are more punctual have better inner clocks.
False. The article suggests that those who are more punctual are better at checking the time frequently, whereas those who are late forget to do so. It says that our inner clocks are not reliable on their own.

2.
請你在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單詞填入句子的空格處

1. I need to take control of my life. The days keep slipping by and I never achieve anything.

2. Luke is always punctual. I’ve never seen him be late for anything. 

3. Don’t underestimate Lucy. She might be quiet, but she’s extremely professional. 

4. We had so much fun last night that we completely lost track of time and got home very late. 

5. I don’t like being on the receiving end when he’s angry. He can get very aggressive.

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