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Date: Aug 01 2008

Themes: News


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

It’s all over the news in the US. But Americans don’t need the news to tell them that gas is more expensive than it ever has been. They can see it at every fuel station.

But what Americans haven’t seen yet is fewer cars on the road. It will take time for people to adjust to the high price of gas (although fuel in Europe is still more expensive than it is in the US) and for cities to provide more public transportation. At the moment, people are feeling the increased costs, and everyone’s talking about it.


1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.





Jason:  If I see one more headline with the phrase “at the pump” in it, I’m going to shoot somebody.

Beren:  “At the pump”? Like, “Prices at the Pump…

Jason:  “Prices at the Pump”

Beren:  ...Blowing up

Jason:  Pinched at the Pump.”

Beren:  “Pinched at the Pump.” What’s another one?

Jason:  It’s like, yeah, gas is expensive, I know. I’ve been buying gas, I can see that it’s expensive.

Beren:  What’s kind of mind boggling though is that gas is so expensive but it doesn’t seem to be…at least here, it doesn’t seem to be affecting who’s driving. I see just as many cars now as I did before.

Jason:  Back when it was half as much a few years ago, you’d see just the same amount of cars.

Beren:  Yeah, it’s weird. Especially since you’d think people would be like, “Oh, this is perfect opportunity to start biking or using public transportation.” Because it’s so expensive. I put $10 in my car which usually, like before this, used to get a quarter of a tank. Like, I’d drive to work and home or whatever. And now it lasts me a day, if that, if I’m driving. $10!

Jason:  And like…what is it going to take? Like how expensive is it going to have to get for driving to taper off a little bit?

Beren:  I don’t know. Like I feel like the people that drive a lot probably can’t afford to in a sense so maybe they’re cutting out other things. Like, “I want to drive so I guess we won’t eat out as much.” I don’t know. It’s weird.

Jason:  A lot of people don’t have a choice. We really kind of messed up here because we built an infrastructure that pretty much makes it impossible to not drive in a lot of cities.

Beren:  Yeah.



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Jason says that he’s tired of reading news about gas prices. He says he’s aware of how expensive it is because he has to pay for it all the time.

Beren is surprised that she doesn’t see fewer cars. She spends as much as $10 a day on gas right now and wonders how many people can afford to drive at all.

But do they have a choice? Jason thinks it’s a shame that US has built its entire transpiration system around cars, so much so that there aren’t other options for getting to certain places.

Has the cost of fuel gone up where you live? What’s the main form of transport you use? Why?



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Saudi Arabia

 the gas is very important but i'd like to know why gas is so expensive all over the world?what the reasons?

08:51 PM Aug 01 2008 |



Hey renemex, Mexican guy!!!

I Agree with you…

06:24 PM Aug 01 2008 |




Hi Brazilian Guy, does exist a lot of reasons for not to use ethanol in the USA and others countrys in the whole world, but the most important, there is a lot of tons of oil yet! Doesn´t matter if add polution or destroy the environment, they pay big amounts of $$$ for not to reduce the demand of gas, fuel gasoline, diesel or whatever derivates, in fact the internal combustion motors are obsolete since decades!

its very sad…

05:31 PM Aug 01 2008 |



I have no car…...

02:21 PM Aug 01 2008 |



United States

so expensive today

12:04 PM Aug 01 2008 |




The cost of fuel has increased where I live. But there are more cars than before. Now the poorest man has got a car.I have got my own car but I prefer using public transportations.

12:01 PM Aug 01 2008 |



It seems to me it is not good hear for the poor people and also others becouse life depends on gas,

we should like to hear opposite of that instead of increasing.

12:00 PM Aug 01 2008 |




oh ,we r all eye-witnesses that the soaring price of gas.

meanwhile ,the increasing price accelenrates almost every good like food ,necessity ,ect . even now i have my hair cut ,its price doubles ,oh my god

why does the salary increase somehow ???


11:58 AM Aug 01 2008 |



The cost of driving in my city has doubled since I first started driving. But as you said, there are still thousands of cars on road. Getting used to driving is just like getting used to your own leg, once without it, feel like disabled. The city's infrasturcture makes it hard to use public transportation, and escaping from busy city's traffic and air pollution has driven us to choose away from the city. The antisipation says that the oil price will change people's life style and force people to go back again near the city. But as i see the city i live, I dare not agree.

08:39 AM Aug 01 2008 |




The cost of fuel has increased where I live. And as Beren said It doesn't seem that people are leaving their cars.

I don't have my own car so I use public transportation every day. I take a bus, and the subway to go to university. It takes me almost an hour!

02:31 AM Aug 01 2008 |



Viet Nam

the increase in price of oil is making the price of the other things be increasing too, that's bad news for poor person. I think the policy makers should do something to make it fall down, or at least, keep it at the same level, not increase anymore.

01:31 AM Aug 01 2008 |


VOLTSSuper Member!


Most cars in Brazil is using ethanol as fuel. The gas sold at fuel station has added 20% ethanol in Brazil, thus poluition is reduced. Each 10 new cars sold here, 9 is using ethanol. Ethanol is cheaper than gas, about half costs. Our infrastructure dont need change, at least for a while.

why doesnt your country use ethanol??

01:28 AM Aug 01 2008 |



Iran, Islamic Republic Of

we may have gasless cars in future everywhere for all to use to every road… thanks technologyCool

01:28 AM Aug 01 2008 |





 but  it's necessary of life, isn't it  ?!Cry

12:27 AM Aug 01 2008 |

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