Welcome to Easy Stories in English, the podcast that will take your English from OK to Good, and from Good to Great.
I am Ariel Goodbody, your host for this show. Today’s story is for beginners. The name of the story is Simon’s New Job. You can find a transcript of the episode at EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Job. That’s EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Job. There, you can also download the episode as a PDF.
OK, I’ll just explain some words that are in today’s story.
When you tear something, and the past tense is tore, you pull it so that it breaks. If you pull your clothes, they can tear. You can tear a piece of paper easily. You can also tear hair out of your head, but this hurts a lot. If you tear through something, you break through it to the other side. If you tear something apart, you tear it into lots of little pieces. If you are very hot, you might tear off your clothing to cool down. Some calendars have pages you can tear off. Each day, you tear off a new page.
When it is very hot, or you do a lot of exercise, you sweat. When you sweat, water comes out of your body, and you start to smell bad. Some people sweat a lot, and others sweat less.
If you sweat a lot, you should use deodorant. You put deodorant under your arms and it stops you from sweating. Some deodorant comes in spray cans, and some deodorant you roll against the skin. Some deodorant has nice smells, like flowers, and some deodorant has no smell, but stops you from sweating.
Still means ‘despite that’ or ‘nonetheless’. For example, Easy Stories in English is a lot of work, but I still do it, because it’s important to me. You might love ice cream, but still, you probably shouldn’t eat it every day.
Smell is when you go [sniff sniff]. The past tense is smelled or smelt. You smell with your nose. Usually, you smell without thinking. If food smells very bad, you shouldn’t eat it. If a person smells very bad, you shouldn’t kiss them!
The heating is the system you use to make a building hotter. If you are cold at home, you can put the heating on to warm up the house. Some heating systems use gas, some use electricity, some use oil and so on. After COVID, electricity and gas has been very expensive in many parts of the world, so now in Europe many people are putting the heating on less to save money.
When you stick to something, and the past tense is stuck, you are touching that thing and it won’t stop touching you. For example, if you lick an envelope, you put your tongue on it, it will stick together when you close it. If it is very hot and you are sweating a lot, lots of water is coming out of your body, then your clothes will stick to you. If you wear a hat for a long time, your hair will stick to your head.
When you run after someone because you want to catch them, you chase them. Hunters chase animals to catch and kill them. Many children’s games are about chasing each other and catching each other. If you always chase after success, you might miss the important things in life.
Scream is when you go [screams]. Screaming is usually very loud. People scream when they are scared or very angry. But you can also scream for fun reasons. For example, there is a song that children sometimes sing: ‘I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!’ Because who doesn’t love ice cream?
When you control something, you can choose exactly what it does. For example, when you use a computer, you control what the computer does. When you play video games, you control a character. Some parents like to control their children, and tell their children what to do. Some bosses like to control their employees, and this is usually not very fun!
OK, so listen and enjoy!
Simon’s New Job
Simon lay in bed. He was very excited. Tomorrow, he would start his new job. He was going to work at a company that sold cars. Simon couldn’t wait to meet his colleagues. He couldn’t wait to see his desk. He couldn’t wait to get paid.
But Simon wasn’t excited about the cars. Actually, Simon hated driving, but he didn’t say this to his boss. He knew that after six months at the company, they would give him a car, and he would take it. But he didn’t want to use the car. He already had a small blue car, and he only used it twice a year, to visit his grandparents. He didn’t need more than that.
On Monday morning, Simon woke up and tore off a page from his calendar. Today’s picture was a happy cat. It was going to be a good week.
Simon walked to work. He wanted to be healthy for his new job. But the office was far away from his house. It took an hour to walk there. When Simon arrived, he was sweating. That morning, he had put on lots of deodorant, but it wasn’t enough.
Simon met his colleagues and saw his new desk. He enjoyed the work, but because it was his first day, he still sweated a lot. All day, his colleagues sniffed and said, ‘What’s that smell? Is there a dog in here?’
Simon got home and said, ‘Tomorrow will be better.’
On Tuesday, Simon tore off another page from his calendar. Today’s picture was a cat playing with a dog.
Today, Simon took the train to work. He put on lots of deodorant and walked to the train station. The train was faster than walking, but there was only one train every hour. So Simon arrived to work forty minutes early. When he got there, the office was closed.
So Simon stood and waited. It was very cold outside. He didn’t have a scarf or gloves on, because he hadn’t wanted to sweat.
When his boss came thirty minutes later, he said, ‘Ah, good to see you came early! It’s good that you’re excited. But your face is blue! Are you alright?’
‘I’m f-f-fine,’ said Simon.
‘Don’t worry, I’ll put the heating on.’
They went inside, and Simon’s boss put the heating on. Soon, it was much warmer. Soon, Simon felt better. But when he came home that evening, he couldn’t take off his shirt. He had used too much deodorant, and now his shirt was stuck to him! He had to use a pair of scissors to cut the shirt off. And it was such a nice shirt!
‘Oh well,’ said Simon. ‘Tomorrow will be better.’
On Wednesday, Simon tore off another page from the calendar. In today’s picture, the dog was chasing the cat.
Today, Simon took the bus. He only put on a bit of deodorant. But there were lots of people at the bus stop. When the first bus came, they all ran onto it, and there wasn’t enough space for Simon. He waited for the next bus, and it was very full, but there was space for Simon. But still, he sweated a lot, and there was a woman on the bus who was screaming. Simon didn’t understand why she was screaming, but nobody said anything.
When he got to work, he was a bit late and had a headache. He told his boss there was a problem with the bus, and his boss said, ‘That’s alright, it happens to everyone. But it won’t happen again, will it?’ His boss sniffed. ‘Huh, there’s that smell again. Did the dog come back?’
In the evening, Simon took off his shirt. It wasn’t stuck to him, but it smelled very bad.
‘Tomorrow will be better,’ said Simon. ‘Tomorrow will be better.’
On Thursday, Simon tore off another page from his calendar. In today’s picture, the cat was chasing the dog.
Today, Simon called a taxi. He wanted to make sure that he got to work OK. He put on lots of deodorant, and then waited fifteen minutes for it to dry. Then he got into the taxi and told the taxi driver where to go.
But the taxi driver went a strange way. He went through lots of streets that Simon didn’t know. Simon saw fields with cows and sheep and thought, ‘This isn’t how you get to work.’
When he got there, the taxi driver said, ‘That’ll be fifty pounds, please.’
Fifty pounds! Simon couldn’t believe it. It was so expensive. Still, he took the money out of his wallet and paid the driver.
At work that day, Simon didn’t talk to anyone. He was not happy. At lunch, he couldn’t buy food, because he had spent all his money on the taxi. When Simon got home, his shirt wasn’t stuck to him, but he was still very angry. He pulled off his shirt too quickly and tore it.
‘Tomorrow will be…’ Simon couldn’t say it. So he just went to bed.
On Friday, Simon tore off another page from his calendar. In today’s picture, there was no chasing. There was just the cat, but the cat had a fat stomach and looked very happy.
Today, Simon decided to drive to work. He really didn’t want to drive, but it seemed the best way to go. He could control the temperature in the car, and he could drive a fast way to work. If he got there early, he could sit in the car and put the heating on.
But when Simon got into the car, the car wouldn’t start. He tried again, but still, the car wouldn’t start.
Simon wanted to scream. He had tried everything. He had tried to control how much deodorant he used, but that wasn’t enough. He had tried every different way of going to work, but that wasn’t enough. He had tried driving, which he hated, and that still wasn’t enough.
So Simon went inside and rang his boss.
‘Hello?’ said Simon’s boss.
‘AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!’ screamed Simon.
Then he put the phone down and went to bed.
Simon wasn’t going to work. He could control that.
I hope you enjoyed today’s story! This story was actually based on my own life a bit. When something is based on something, it means that you used one thing to help make the other. So I took experiences from my life, things that had happened in my life, and used them to write this story. I based this story on my own life.
Actually, I didn’t have experiences as bad as Simon. I’m glad I didn’t! But one time, I did have a new job, and it was in a place that was difficult to get to. There was only one bus that went there, and I could only get a bus that arrived too early or just a little bit late. I tried walking there one day and got lost in a small forest, and arrived late. It was a hot day, and I had sweated a lot while walking in the forest, so I went and put lots of deodorant on in the bathroom. That was a difficult day!
The worst thing is, I was only doing a trial period. A trial period is when you try doing a job for a few weeks, and if your boss likes you, you can keep the job. But for the job I’m talking about, I did a two week trial period and I didn’t get the job. So I understand Simon’s feelings very well! Sometimes you really want to be good at a new job, but it doesn’t happen.
What about you? Have you had job experiences like Simon’s? Go to the transcript at EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Job and leave a comment at the bottom. I’d love to hear about your experience.
If you enjoyed the story and want to say thank you, you can buy me a coffee. Just go to EasyStoriesInEnglish.com and click the orange button that says Buy me a coffee! Or you can write me a nice review on Apple Podcasts, or follow me on Instagram @arielgoodbody. Thank you for listening, and see you in two weeks!