Contemporary American Society   (p. II)
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Contemporary American Society   (p. II)

A point of view

Read these two opinions about retirement. Which is more positive? Which do you think your parents will have when they retire? How about you?

1. “I’ve never been happier. I finally have time to do all the things that I had always wanted to do.”

2. “I have too much time and I don’t always know what to do with myself. I almost never see my friends from work.”

Active vocabulary:

1 to retire



піти геть, звільнитися; піти у відставку;


відставка, усамітнення

удаляться, уходить; увольнять(ся). уходить в отставку;


отставка, уединение

2 to adjust (to free time)

пристосовуватися; приводити у порядок; улагоджувати

приспосабливать(ся); приводить в порядок; улаживать (спор и т.д.)

3 to keep clean

to keep one’s word (promise)

I won’t keep you long

to keep one’s temper

to keep one’s head cool


to keep cool


to keep late hours

тримати в чистоті;

дотримуватися слова


я вас довго не затримаю;

не хвилюватися;


не втрачати голову;


зберігати спокій;


пізно лягати чи прокидатися

держать в чистоте;

сдержать слово (обещание)


я вас долго не задержу;

не волноваться;


не терять головы, сохранять спокойствие;

сохранять спокойствие, хладнокровие;

поздно ложиться или вставать

4 trouble 


to give somebody trouble


to get into trouble


to ask for/look for trouble

турбота, хвилювання;


завдавати клопоту;


попасти в біду;


шукати неприємності


беспокойство, волнение, тревога;


причинять беспокойство кому-либо;


попасть в беду;


напрашиваться на неприятности, лезть на рожон

5 to make both/two/ends meet

зводити кінці з кінцями

сводить концы с концами

6 regret


to regret


to my regret

прикрість, розкаяння; шкодувати, розкаюватися;

на жаль

сожаление, раскаяние;

сожалеть, раскаиваться;

к моему сожалению

Read the following point of view.

My name is Ron Petrotta. I have three teenagers, two girls and a boy. I want to tell you it’s not easy to have kids nowadays. They all laugh because I’m always saying: “When I was a kid ... ” But, it’s true; when I was a kid, things were different. Families were closer. We all went to church together. I make my family go to church every Sunday, but we are the only ones in our neighborhood who go. So my kids think that religion is just another one of Dad’s traditional ideas. There is not much support for traditional ideas nowadays.

It’s hard to be a parent these days. My parents never had to worry about drugs, about sex, about the danger for their kids on the street. Kids weren’t even supposed or so. There were some problems, I guess, even then, but there weren’t as many. Drugs and violence weren’t weren’t all around us like they are now.

Well, I’m a realist. I expect my kids will probably try marihuanna and alcohol and my girls may live with their boyfriends. I won’t like it and I’ll fight to prevent it, but that’s the way it is. But I think that basically my kids are good kids. I think they’ll grow up and get married. They’ll probably have the same kinds of values that my wife and I have. I just wish it were 1965 again. Those were the good old days!

Exercise 1. Read each of the following statements carefully to determine whether each is true (T), false (F), or impossible to know (ITK).

1. _____ This man retired about six months ago.

2. _____ The people at the party were negative about retiring.

3. _____ This man’s son is married.

4. _____ This man worked for forty years in the company.

5. _____ He and his wife are moving in with John, Jr.

6. _____ This man dislikes retirement.

7. _____ He and his wife live only on their savings and a retirement plan.

8. _____ This man has other children at home.

9. _____ This man has some physical problems.

10. _____ This man and his wife are going to move from the town.

Exercise 2. Fill in the blanks with vocabulary from the reading. Make necessary changes in the form of the word.

1. serious/regret/plans

I have some ______________   _______________ about my ___________________ to live away from my family.

2. in fact/begin/back/trouble

Little by little he is ___________ to feel better. _________,

he has no _____________ at all with his ___________ now.

3. dislike/decisions/money

I __________ making ____________ about ____________ .

4. limited/afford/make ends meet

I can’t __________ to live on a _____________ income because I can’t ___________________ .

Exercise 3. Show your opinion of the following statements by putting 1 next to your first preference, 2 next to your second choice, and so on through to 6. Share your ideas with a classmate or the class.

When my parents grow old and retire, I hope that they live

_____ with me.

_____ with my brother.

_____ with my sister.

_____ some time with me, and some time with my brother and/or sister.

_____ near me, so I can visit them.

_____ independently of the family.

Often a real problem happens when one parent dies and the other is alone. If my father died, I’m sure that my mother would

_____ continue living where she is living.

_____ move in with me.

_____ live with my brother.

_____ live with my sister.

_____ move to a smaller residence.

_____ move to a nursing home (a home for the elderly).

Exercise 4. Retell the text as if you were:

a. the speaker

b. his daughter/son

c. one of his friends

Exercise 5. Hold a round-table discussion on the following problem: Retirement – its advantages and disadvantages.