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  • Rob: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English. I'm Rob.

  • Finn: and I'm Finn. Hello.

  • Rob: Hello, Finn! Are you chewing gum over there?

  • Finn: Yeah. Oh hang on ... I'll just stick it under the desk for now.

  • Rob: Yuck ... that's revolting!

  • Why don't you go and put it in the bin?

  • Since when did you take up this antisocial habit?

  • Antisocial means annoying to other people, by the way.

  • Finn: Yeah, well. OK, Rob. Fine.

  • Since I heard that there was evidence that chewing gum can improve your brain.

  • Rob: So how does it do that?

  • Finn: Well, some experts say that the chewing action

  • can lead to an increase in blood flow to the brain.

  • Rob: Interesting! And guess what, we're taking about chewing gum on today's programme!

  • So here's a question for you, Finn.

  • When did the Singapore government outlaw chewing gum? Was it in...

  • a) 1982? b) 1992? or c) 2002?

  • Finn: And just before I answer, to outlaw something means to make it illegal.

  • Well, I think the answer is a) 1982.

  • Rob: Well, we'll chew on it for a while, shall

  • we, and find out if you're right at the end of the programme.

  • Finn: So, Rob, what's the history of chewing gum?

  • Rob: Well, people have been chewing gum for thousands of years.

  • The Ancient Greeks chewed gum made from resin ... a sticky substance produced by trees.

  • But why do people like chewing gum?

  • Finn: Well, for many people it's just something to do.

  • But you know, I like the idea that it's good for my brain.

  • Research has shown that people find gum chewers are also more approachable

  • that means they're friendlier and easier to talk to.

  • Rob: OK. Well, there might be some truth in that.

  • The thing we're here to discuss today,

  • though, is how to dispose or get rid of gum responsibly.

  • And you didn't set a very good example earlier in the show, did you, Finn?

  • Finn: Ah, well. Yeah, no, I didn't.

  • But lots of people dispose of gum irresponsibly that means not responsibly.

  • It's often found stuck underneath tables, chairs, benches and escalators.

  • And it's really difficult and expensive to remove once it has dried.

  • Rob: Right ... because gum actually creates a chemical bond

  • which means when one thing joins firmly to another.

  • For example it bonds with tarmac roads,

  • rubber shoe soles, and concrete paving.

  • Finn: So how do we remove dried gum from roads and pavements?

  • Rob, how would you do it?

  • Rob: Well, people do use high-pressure steam cleaners and then they scrape it off.

  • But it's a slow process that's labour-intensive

  • which means it takes a lot of people to do it.

  • Finn: I'm sure it does. So let's hear someone telling a BBC reporter about

  • why they threw their gum away in the street.

  • Can you hear the reason she gives?

  • Woman: Not that often. I often put it in the bin.

  • Reporter: But you do it sometimes? Woman: Yeah, sometimes.

  • Reporter: Why do you do it sometimes? Woman: I don't know. Because there's no bins around.

  • Finn: Now, she says she throws her gum in the street

  • when she can't find a bin.

  • Rob: So, why doesn't she put it in her pocket and wait until she finds a bin?

  • Finn: Ah, no. No way, man! That's ... that would make her pocket sticky!

  • Rob: Oh dear ... it sounds like you and her are two of a kind and that means very similar.

  • OK, well, let's find out what another gum chewer does.

  • Reporter: If you're walking along the street,

  • and you had some other, a packet of crisps,

  • when you'd finished it, would you throw that away?

  • Man: Not really.

  • Reporter: So why do you sometimes throw the chewing gum away?

  • What's the difference? Man: It's like food. It's not like a wrapper.

  • Finn: So, this guy says gum is like food, so it's OK to drop it on the ground.

  • Do you agree, Rob?

  • Rob: No, I don't. Food, such as a discarded apple core or banana skin,

  • quickly and naturally degrades or breaks down.

  • And other types of litter, for example, a crisp packet

  • or a sweet wrapper, can be picked up easily.

  • Finn: That's right. Whereas chewing gum is a bit like glue once it dries

  • and it's extremely difficult to remove.

  • So, in this way, of course, it can also be environmentally damaging.

  • Rob: In 2000 a study of a busy London shopping street showed that

  • a quarter of a million pellets of chewing gum were stuck to the pavement.

  • And a pellet is a small round ball of something that has become hard.

  • Finn: That's a lot of pellets, isn't it!

  • The amount of discarded gum in Singapore was considered to be such a problem

  • that the government banned the sale and consumption of gum altogether.

  • They said it was because people were sticking their gum in the sliding doors of subway trains,

  • stopping the doors from opening and closing.

  • Rob: Yes, it's a sticky subject isn't it?

  • Finn: It is indeed. A sticky situation, Rob.

  • Rob: And that brings us on to today's quiz question!

  • I asked you earlier: when did the Singapore government outlaw chewing gum?

  • Was it in ... a) 1982? b) 1992? or c) 2002?

  • Finn: I said a) 1982.

  • Rob: You are wrong, Finn, just for today.

  • The answer is actually b) 1992.

  • Finn: Which means the people of Singapore could chew gum for ten more years than I said.

  • That's good. Now, how about those words again, Rob?

  • Rob: OK, well, the words we heard today were:

  • antisocial

  • to outlaw something

  • resin

  • approachable

  • chemical bond

  • labour-intensive

  • two of a kind

  • degrades

  • pellet

  • Finn: Well, that brings us to the end of today's 6 Minute English.

  • We hope you've had plenty to chew on in today's programme.

  • And you can hear more programmes at bbclearningenglish.com.

  • Join us again soon.

  • Both: Bye.

Rob: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English. I'm Rob.

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    Adam Huang 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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