Posted by: snaed | July 28, 2009

Special Days

Which day is the most important to you each year? Is it your birthday? Perhaps the birthday of someone you love? Or an anniversary? Many people have their own special days and want to celebrate them in some distinctive way. The celebration may be a special meal or dining out, or a gift, perhaps a trip. Maybe even a greeting card is enough to mark the occasion. But the point is that the day symbolizes some important event, and that its importance is recognized by other significant people as well.

Traditional holidays are also important, but they have a group significance instead of a personal meaning. Usually some religious or national figure is commemorated. These occasions may be marked by community celebrations, or especially by family get-togethers. As families become more fragmented and scattered, these holidays may be ever-more important, since they provide a chance for people to share their lives with each other again.

COMPREHENSION

1.  Does the celebration of special occasions always have to be expensive?

2. How many ways to celebrate them are mentioned? What are they?

3. Do public holidays have the same purpose as private ones?

EXPRESS YOURSELF

1.  How do you celebrate New Year’s Day?

2. Did you make any New Year’s resolution this year? What were they? Were you able to keep them?

3. How do you celebrate your birthday?

4. How do you celebrate your wedding anniversary?

5. What do you think would be the perfect gift for a wedding anniversary?

6. What do you want to do for your next birthday?

7. What do you like to receive on your special day?

8. Do you think cash is an appropriate gift?

9. Do you think it’s okay to throw a luxurious party in an expensive restaurant for your child’s birthday?

10. What do you usually prepare for your child’s birthday?

11. How do you celebrate your parents’ birthdays? And what do you prepare for their gifts?

12. What if your spouse forgot your birthday or wedding anniversary?

OPINION SAMPLES – comment on these

1.  I’ve decided to take a week off and travel for my next birthday. I want to free myself form my nine-to-five job, my friends and my relatives in order to spend some time to discover myself. I have a good job with an adequate income, I have an active social life. But is that my purpose on earth? Am I being too selfish? So I want to get away by myself and relax and think about my future. But I wonder if I have the courage actually to change my life.

2.  These days a lot of parents throw a party in an expensive restaurant for their children’s birthdays. They do this to show off their wealth, and because they’re too lazy to prepare food and drinks at home. This might send the wrong signal to their children, who would naturally enough think that celebrating a special day requires money and who might be disappointed if their birthday party is not more luxurious than their friends’. This is the worst thing parents can do in raising their children.

USEFULL EXPRESSIONS – explain and comment

1.  A woman bakes a child’s birthday cake big enough to hold all the candles—and her own small enough not to.

2. The best way to remember your wife’s birthday is to forget it once.

3. When a man has a birthday he may take a day off. When a woman has a birthday she may take as much as five years off.

4. A diplomatic husband said to his wife, “How do you expect me to remember your birthday when you don’t look any older?”

5. It’s what guests say after they leave the party that counts.

6. The success of a big party is usually measured by the money that is wasted.

Issue 6

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