Now, the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.
Last week, I told about the number one. Today, I will tell about expressions using other numbers.
Some problems are difficult to solve. But there are a lot of number expressions that can help. For example, if we put two and two together, we might come up with the right answer. We know that two heads are better than one. It is always better to work with another person to solve a problem.
Sometimes there are no two ways about it. Some problems have only one solution. You cannot be of two minds over this.
But with any luck, we could solve the problem in two shakes of a lamb's tail. We could have our answers quickly and easily.
Sometimes we can kill two birds with one stone. That is, we can complete two goals with only one effort or action. But we must remember that two wrongs don't make a right. If someone does something bad to you, you should not do the same to him.
If you are going out with your girlfriend, or boyfriend, you do not want another friend to go along on your date. You can just say to your friend: two's company, three's a crowd.
When I was a young child in school, I had to learn the three R's. These important skills are reading, writing and arithmetic. These three words do not all start with the letter "R." But they have the sound of "R." My teachers used to give three cheers when I did well in math. They gave praise and approval for a job well done.
Some of my friends were confused and did not understand their schoolwork. They were at sixes and sevens. In fact, they did not care if they finished high school. They saw little difference between the two choices. Six of one, half a dozen the other – that was their position. But they were really happy when they completed their studies and graduated from high school. They were in seventh heaven. They were on cloud nine.
Nine times out of ten, students who do well in school find good jobs. Some work in an office doing the same things every day at nine-to-five jobs. You do not have to dress to the nines, or wear your best clothes, for this kind of work.
Last year, one of my friends applied for a better job at her office. I did not think she would get it. I thought she had a hundred to one shot at the job. Other people at her office thought her chances were a million to one.? One reason was that she had been caught catching forty winks at the office. She slept at her desk for short periods during the day. But her supervisor appointed her to the new job at the eleventh hour -- at the very last minute. I guess her lucky number came up.
This VOA Special English program, WORDS AND THEIR STORIES, was written by Jill Moss. I'm Faith Lapidus.
1.arithmetic n. 算术，算法
He is good at arithmetic.
2.supervisor n. 监督人，[管理] 管理人；检查员
The supervisor prescribed the steps in which orders must be filled out.
1.They were in seventh heaven. They were on cloud nine.
in seventh heaven 处于狂喜状态中
Our boss is in seventh heaven this week.
That couple were in seventh heaven when they had their honeymoon.
on cloud nine 非常高兴，九霄云上
He was on cloud nine after winning the competition.
She has been on cloud nine since the magazine printed the story she wrote.
2.You do not have to dress to the nines, or wear your best clothes, for this kind of work.
dress to the nines 衣着光鲜
People dress to the nines for the Christmas party.
All parents dress their children to the nines during the Spring Festival.
有一些问题很难解决。但是有很多关于数字的表达方式可以起到作用 。例如，如果我们根据事实推理(put two and two together)，就可能得出正确的答案 。我们知道人多智广(或者说三个臭皮匠，顶个诸葛亮，two heads are better than one) 。与其他人一起工作来解决问题总比一个人好 。
有时候你别无选择(no two ways about it)，有些问题只有一个解决方法。你不能三心二意(be of two minds) 。
但是有时候运气好，我们能立即(in two shakes of a lamb’s tail)解决问题。我们能够迅速简便地得到答案 。
有时候我们能够一举两得(kill two birds with one stone)。也就是说，我们可以通过一次努力行动完成两个目标 。但是我们必须记住，“两个错误不能构成一个正确”(two wrongs don’t make a right) 。如果别人对你做了什么坏事，你不能冤冤相报 。
如果你跟男朋友或女朋友外出，你不想另外一个朋友参加你的约会，你可以对你的朋友说：两人成伴三人不欢(two’s company, three’s a crowd.)。
当我还在读书的时候，我必须学习三个"R"。这三项重要的技能是阅读(reading)，写作(writing_和算术(arithmetic) 。这三个词并不都是以字母"R"开头的 。但是他们的发音都包含"R"音 。我数学表现比较好时，老师经常为我欢呼(give three cheers) 。人们经常为完成的比较好的工作予以赞扬和认可 。
我有些朋友非常困惑，不能明白作业。他们简直乱七八糟(at sixes and sevens) 。实际上，他们根本就不在乎能否中学毕业 。他们觉得两个选择没有任何区别，两者是半斤八两，各有千秋(Six of one, half a dozen the other)——这就是他们的立场 。但是当他们从完成学业，从中学毕业时非常高兴 。他们简直非常愉快(in seventh heaven)，欣喜若狂(on cloud nine) 。
十有八九(Nine times out of ten)，在学校表现比较好的学生容易找到好工作。有一些人在办公室每天做着同样的事情，过着朝九晚五(nine-to-five)的生活 。做这种工作，你不必打扮得时髦到极点(dress to the nines)，或者穿你最好的衣服 。
去年，我一个朋友申请办公室里一份比较好的工作。我认为她肯定得不到 。我认为她得到这份工作的机会微乎其微(a hundred to one shot) 。她办公室其他人认为她的机会也非常小(a million to one) 。一个原因是她被抓住在办公室小睡(forty winks) 。白天她在办公室趴在桌子上睡了一小会儿 。但是她的主管在最后时刻(eleventh hour)委任了她这项新的工作 。我猜她是中彩了(lucky number came up) 。