Treading on eggshells 言行小心謹慎

更新時間 2014年 2月 4日, 星期二 - 格林尼治標準時間12:04

The script of this programme 本節目台詞

Li: 大家好,歡迎收聽《地道英語》我是楊莉。今天我的搭檔是 Rob. Hi Rob.

Rob: Hi Li. It looks like you've been busy.

Li: I've just picked up some groceries from the local shop, you know - milk, eggs, bread, flour - I'm going to make a cake.

Rob: Oh great. So how was Mr Brown, the shopkeeper? Hasn't he just split up with his wife?

Li: He has. It was tricky in the shop. I didn't want to say anything to him just in case I mentioned his wife. I only said: "Good morning", and he just said: "Is it?"

Rob: Hmm, it sounds like you've been treading on eggshells.

Li: Oh no, the shop was very clean, nothing on the floor - I don't really think he's the sort of person to throw food around!


Eggs are not the only thing you have to be careful with

Rob: No Li - I mean you were trying very hard not to upset him - that's what treading on eggshells means.

Li: Oh! 這很類似漢語裏的如履薄冰 treading on eggshells 在這裏它意思是講話謹慎,小心翼翼,避免讓某人生氣。So really it's about being sensitive to the situation?

Rob: Yes.

Li: Well, I was very sensitive. But what have eggshells got to do with it?

Rob: Well, if there were egg shells on the floor literally you would have to be very careful where you put your feet - but this phrase means being careful about what you say.

Li: Right! Treading on eggshells 這個短語很形像,走在雞蛋殼上,一個人肯定要萬分小心, 在某種特定場合一個人說話也要特別小心:

  • I had to be so careful with what I said to my ex-girlfriend. The smallest thing made her angry: it was like treading on eggshells.
  • Ever since my argument with my neighbour about parking, I feel like I've been treading on eggshells.
  • Since my friend's father died, I don't know what to say to him: it's like treading on eggshells.

Li: 聽上去有時想小心翼翼都很不容易,因為你不知道到底應該說些什麼。So Rob, what should I have said to Mr Brown?

Rob: You could have said 'plenty more fish in the sea!'

Li: What?!

Rob: Or... 'I didn't like her much anyway'?

Li: Rob 這是在教給我們如何大膽說話,同小心翼翼正好相反。

Rob: Am I? Anyway let me help you with your shopping... oops (Rob 把雞蛋摔倒了地板上!)

Li: Rob! You've dropped the eggs all over my kitchen floor.

Rob: Now you really will be walking on eggshells!

Li: That's not funny.

Rob: I didn't like your cakes much anyway.

Both: Bye.

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