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Have you ever wondered what your ancestors were like? Did they immigrate from a foreign country to where you live now? What was life like for them in the past? These are common questions that get mentioned when talking about genealogy—your family’s history. With advanced genealogy and DNA testing more readily available than ever, it is now easy and…
 
A tongue twister is a phrase that is designed to be difficult to articulate properly and can be used as a type of spoken word game or even a voice warm-up for performers, politicians, and other speakers. Specifically for language learners, they can be used as exercises to improve pronunciation, fluency, and speaking speed. Join us for today’s episo…
 
For those who think that United States traditional foods only include hamburgers, hot dogs, and apple pie—you’re wrong (although we do eat a lot of those). In the US, almost every city or state can be associated with its unique kind of food. From New England clam chowder and Kansas City barbecue to New Orleans jambalaya and Wisconsin cheese curds, …
 
Since the beginning of journalism, news and media outlets have published damaging, embarrassing, and even racially biased stories to provide readers with interesting and attractive articles—whether they are true or not—and have left these stories uncorrected in their publications. These unfair stories have caused many to be kept from getting jobs, …
 
Seven years ago, comedian Christian Fetterman left his home in Pennsylvania, US for Chile with the dream of learning Spanish and making people laugh with funny videos. Since starting his YouTube channel—“Gringo Mode On”—three years ago, he has gained widespread popularity for his viral content, especially his hilarious parodies and stereotypes of C…
 
The Southeast Asian country of Myanmar has suffered from countless hardships and injustices in the recent past, from the mass genocide of the Rohingya Muslims to having one of the longest ongoing civil wars in the world. To make things even worse, on February 1st, the Myanmar military successfully deposed the democratically elected National League …
 
When speaking any language—as a native or as a learner—it can be very easy to fall into the habit of using the same general and uninteresting adjectives over and over. In English, just a few of these adjectives include “good”, “bad”, “fine”, and they are not only vague—but also downright boring. A great way to expand your lexicon, sound more fluent…
 
It is common to hear people talk all about the big cities in the US—New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, etc. However, a lesser-known city that lies in the hills of Kentucky is Louisville. Home to the famous boxer, Muhammed Ali, The Kentucky Derby, and Kentucky Fried Chicken—Louisville is a hidden gem that is overlooked too often by to…
 
The Grand Canyon is an enormous natural formation located in the southwest US in a state called Arizona that was formed by millions of years of river and wind erosion. At 446km length and 29km width, the canyon is a sight to see and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the US with an estimated 5.9 million tourists visiting every year. …
 
The rise of climate change in recent years has affected our planet in many ways, one of which is the increase in frequency and magnitude of natural disasters. Every year, these forces of nature cause chaos, destruction, and death more and more frequently than before. Whether it’s tornados in Missouri, blizzards in Boston, or wildfires in Chile, nat…
 
A euphemism is a word or expression used in place of one that may be found offensive or suggest something unpleasant. Some euphemisms are intended to be funny while others are used to say something that would be very inappropriate to say otherwise. While they might seem confusing or vague to someone learning English, native speakers use them consta…
 
With the rise of remote work during the pandemic, the world has seen a significant increase in people leaving their urban homes for more rural settings away from the city and traditional office settings. Some are even brave enough to leave their permanent homes behind and accept a nomad lifestyle, traveling from place to place to live and work. Joi…
 
A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investing scam that generates returns for earlier investors with money taken from later investors. This is similar to a pyramid scheme in that both are based on using new investors' funds to pay the earlier backers. These schemes have existed for many years and examples can be found all over the world from Brazil’s Te…
 
The death penalty—also known as capital punishment—is the execution or killing of an offender sentenced to death by a court of law for a serious crime such as murder. While many countries have abolished capital punishment, it still remains a prevalent practice in many other countries, including the United States where seventeen executions took plac…
 
There are few things that give us a sense of freedom like hopping in the car and driving a long distance from one place to another, viewing the scenery and landscapes along the way. Road trips give us the opportunity to explore new places and cultures, see famous and unknown attractions, and bond with our friends and family. Like most things in lif…
 
In the age of digitization when we are all constantly shopping online, sharing content on multiple social media platforms at once, and our whole lives are essentially online, we give up more and more of our personal data to companies and governments. Is it worth giving up some of our personal information in exchange for access to the digital world?…
 
In the US and Canada, Black History Month takes place during the entire month of February and is dedicated to remembering and recognizing important people and events of African descent. While we still have a long way to go in order to reach equality, it’s important to recognize the accomplishments and contributions that have been made throughout hi…
 
According to the New York Times, when there is a tragedy or disaster, it is common to see an increase in marriages as people want to maintain their feelings of safety, security, and love by deciding to marry their partner. This has certainly been the case during the global pandemic, with figures showing as much as a 70% increase in marriage license…
 
Can you think back to your days in school and remember a certain teacher that really made an impact on your life? Maybe it was a teacher that made you laugh, maybe that made you think deeply, or maybe inspired you to pursue your goals and dreams? Whoever they might be, great teachers are invaluable and we are lucky to have them. Join us for today’s…
 
The Super Bowl—the annual championship game of American football in the United States—is happening this Sunday between the Kansas City Chiefs (Ian’s favorite team!) and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a showdown to find out which team will be crowned champions. And while it’s the most important and popular sport in the United States, American football …
 
Riddles are tricky, brain-teasing statements or questions that are designed to be difficult to solve like a puzzle. Some people are great at solving them while others—like us—are not. Join us for today’s episode as we try our best to solve and break down the meanings of some tough riddles in English. Read the full transcript on our website: https:/…
 
Argentina has finally achieved their goal of becoming the largest Latin American nation to legalize abortion after years of grassroots efforts in the historically Catholic and conservative country. This marks a milestone for the growing feminist movement in the region which has experienced pushback from the Catholic church, conservative leaders, an…
 
Only six days into the new year, we watched in horror as violent, Trump-supporting protesters forced their way into the US Capitol building after President Trump’s public speech encouraging them to stop Congress from finalizing the Electoral College results and democracy from taking place. The historic coup-attempt resulted in hours of destruction,…
 
Fake News—it’s the buzzword that we hear across all forms of communication from social media platforms, news companies, and the most powerful politicians in the world. The rise of digital communication has allowed us to publish and share any information across the internet with the click of a button without having to verify if it’s actually true. W…
 
As we all say goodbye (and good riddance) to 2020, we reflect on the goals and habits that many of us set for ourselves before the start of the year such as losing weight, learning a new skill, traveling, etc. While most of us didn’t stick to these goals, just making it to the end of this crazy year safe and healthy is enough of an accomplishment. …
 
2020 was…well… where do we even start? From kicking off the year with Australian wildfires and the death of Kobe Bryant to the historic Chilean referendum and US presidential elections—all during a global pandemic—this year was one that we will never forget. Join us for today’s episode as we give a year-in-review wrap-up and discuss some of the mos…
 
As vaccines for COVID-19 have started to roll out in different parts of the world these last two weeks, the thought of terminating this deadly disease and returning to our normals lives is giving many hope as we near the end of a long and dark year. However, with rising cases, unorganized policies, and limited vaccines available, it’s apparent that…
 
The US presidential election which we covered in Episode 105 is now over with Joe Biden presumably being the official winner to become the next president of the United States in a year that saw the highest voter turnout in 120 years. However, Trump and his supporters continue to contest the election results, claiming voter fraud and corruption, and…
 
Located in Tanzania, Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s tallest mountain at 5,895 meters (19,240 feet) and takes seven days to complete. With only a 40% success rate of reaching the top, it’s clear that summitting the peak is not for the faint of heart. However, those who brave the harsh weather, high altitude, and physical/mental pain to reach the top …
 
Whether being a beginner or an advanced learner, making mistakes in a foreign language is inevitable. While it can be embarrassing and frustrating, making mistakes helps you recognize your weak spots in order to correct them and to sound more natural and fluent. Tune into today’s episode as we discuss some common English mistakes and how to correct…
 
The rise of social media and technology has changed different aspects of our social interactions, including the way that we romantically date. Meeting someone and asking them out on a pre-planned date has now been replaced by “liking” photos and swiping left or right on social media and dating apps like Tinder. Tune into this week’s podcast as we c…
 
Whenever we go outside and we look up at the big sky and we see the beautiful stars at night, we often ponder what is out there. What is in outer space? Are we alone? Are we the only ones? What's the meaning of life? Everyone thinks about the galaxy, other planets, space exploration, aliens, etc. and really makes us consider the possibilities that …
 
If you were the eyewitness to someone robbing a bank, would you report it to the police? If someone was convinced that they were guilty of a crime that you committed, would you let them take the blame? Would you kill one person in order to save five people? These kinds of difficult scenarios are known in English as ethical dilemmas. There are alway…
 
A conspiracy theory is a belief that some covert organization is responsible for a circumstance or event that happens in the world. From the first moon landing to JFK’s assassination to the recent mysterious death of Jeffrey Epstein, there is no shortage of conspiracy theories that make their way into our everyday news cycles and conversations. Whe…
 
As we discussed in Episode 105, voters will decide who will become the next president in the upcoming US election by ballot. In addition, voters will also be voting on state-specific issues such as Congress representatives, judges, alcohol and tobacco taxes, voting-age requirements, among many others. One could argue that these state laws affect ci…
 
As we approach the one year anniversary of Chile’s social uprising that occurred last October following massive protests and military intervention, tensions are rising again in anticipation of the upcoming constitutional referendum vote in which Chileans will vote to determine if and how a new constitution will be drafted. This vote will be the fir…
 
Less than a month away from the US presidential elections, tensions are running high during a year that has given us a global pandemic, unprecedented forest fires, and a weakened economy. During a normal year, the US voting process can be complex and confusing, let alone with the complications that COVID-19 has presented us this year, in particular…
 
How did the number thirteen become so unlucky? Why is it bad luck to cross a black cat? Why shouldn’t you ever walk under a leaning ladder? These superstitions—widely or commonly held beliefs that things are caused due to bad luck or due to supernatural circumstances—are still very much a part of people’s beliefs and influence their daily actions. …
 
Do you remember your first job? It might not have been the most professional or exciting, but it probably helped you build character and understand the importance of work. Whether it’s cleaning golf carts, waitressing at a retirement home, or mowing lawns, young people get their first jobs for the experience and to have a few extra bucks in their p…
 
Latin America is known for many cultural aspects that make it so unique and special such as food, drinks, geography, art, and music. However, perhaps the most important of all the cultural aspects is dance. It seems to be infused into the daily rhythm and soul of every person that calls Latin America home—with each dance as unique and interesting a…
 
We all have certain habits that are embarrassing, counterproductive, and in some cases, negative for us. Whether it’s singing in the car, smoking cigarettes, or hitting the snooze button too many times, we all have our own guilty pleasures and vices. In today’s episode, we talk about common guilty pleasures and vices—including some of our own. Read…
 
To celebrate Coffee With Gringos 100th episode Paige and Ian hosted a live event where they took questions from the audience. Tune in and hear about favorite episodes, embarrassing moments, favorite Chilean food to favorite drunk food. You can also watch the full episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFSAZrf3gsA…
 
Since the beginning of time, humans have been searching for the answers to some of life’s biggest questions. One of the most widely accepted forms of answering these questions for people around the world has come in the form of religion. In today’s episode, we talk about faith, religious hypocrites, and our own personal beliefs. Read the full trans…
 
Did you know that it’s illegal to fly a kite in Victoria, Australia? Or that it’s prohibited to wear high-heel shoes at the Acropolis in Athens? If your answer is no, then you’ll want to listen to these strange and funny laws and many others that exist in different countries all around the world in this week’s episode. Read along with the transcrip…
 
The United States has a lot of big cities that offer plenty of tourist attractions such as New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Miami. But there’s one big Midwestern city that gets overlooked. This beautiful city located on the shores of Lake Michigan is none other than Chicago. In today’s episode, we talk with fellow Dynamic English teac…
 
“Never Have I Ever” is a popular drinking game in which someone says something they have never done before and if anyone else has done that before, they have to put down a finger and take a drink. In today’s episode, we play “Never Have I Ever…” and talk about our experiences with bungee jumping, exotic foods, and much more. Read the transcript to …
 
What do a globe-cycling woman, a torch-swallowing fire performer, and a chainsaw-juggling, completely-tattooed man have in common? It’s not a joke punchline—it’s the list of some of this year’s Guinness World record-holders. The Guinness World Records started in 1955 with the goal of finding and recognizing the world’s weirdest, wildest, and most i…
 
There’s something magical about opening up a book, feeling the paper pages in your hands, and allowing your imagination to transport you to a new world. However, in a digitized world of phones, computers, tablets, and many other digital devices, reading in its traditional form is becoming increasingly less popular. In today’s episode, we talk about…
 
Sleep—it’s something that all of us have to do in order to be able to function properly as humans. Sleep expert, Dr. Matthew Walker, points out that the majority of people do not get the daily recommended amount of sleep leading to bad moods, low energy, weak immune systems, and even serious diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson’s. In today’s …
 
If you found a briefcase full of money in the woods, would you take it or leave it? If you could change the human body, what enhancements would you make? These kinds of questions that make us consider what decision we would make in possible scenarios are called hypothetical questions. In today’s podcast, we discuss some funny and interesting hypoth…
 
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