miércoles, 26 de agosto de 2015

Talking points: Secrets

This week's talking point is secrets. Before getting together with the members of your conversation group, go over the questions below so that ideas flow more easily when you meet up with your friends and you can work out vocabulary problems beforehand.
  • What kind of secrets do people let you in on?
  • Have you ever let anyone down by revealing a secret?
  • Has anyone let you down by revealing a secret you had told them?
  • Are you good at keeping secrets?
  • What kind of secrets do you find it hard to keep? Why?
  • How secretive are you?
  • Who's the most secretive person you know?
  • Have you ever had a secret or planned something secret?
  • Who is better at keeping secrets, men or women?
  • Do you think that remarks like 'this is just between you and me' or 'please don't tell anyone' are a sure-fire way for the other person to spread the secret?
  • What family secrets do you know?
  • What secrets would you like to discover about your country?
  • Which of these secrets would you find hardest/easiest to keep? Give your reasons.
-You have won the first prize in the lottery
-You see your best friend's partner with someone else
-You have been diagnosed with a serious illness
-You have been demoted at work for your poor performance
-One of your children is on drugs. 

To illustrate the point you can watch the Speakout video Secrets, where passers-by answer these questions:
Are you good at keeping secrets?
Is it ever a good thing to keep a secret from someone?
Do you have a secret talent that your friends or family don’t know about?

I’m a really open person. I don’t keep secrets from my friends or family. I suppose I have things I wouldn’t tell everyone, things I’m a bit embarrassed about, but that’s true for most people. Are you good at keeping secrets?
I think I’m very good at keeping secrets, yes.
I’d like to think so. Um, people come to confide in me and I do the same, so I think it’s a mutual thing.
I’d say it depends on the secret. Erm, sometimes and, yeah, it depends who’s telling me the secret.
Yeah, I believe so. I think sometimes it’s, it’s according to how important the secret is and what it covers. But, um, I’ve kept some secrets in my life, trust me!
No. I’m terrible. I, somehow, and I don’t know if it’s a Canadian thing, but there’s nothing that seems really private to me. I just kind of blurt out everything.
I’ve got to admit I’m not very good at keeping secrets. If it’s a close friend and it’s something I know that erm, they don’t want to ‘get out’ then I will, I will be quite good. But, I am a bit of a gossip and I do like to spread news. Erm, I’m quite an open person with my own secrets so with other people’s I kind of follow the same pattern. It’s not very good. It’s got me in trouble a few times.
Yes, I think I’m pretty good at keeping secrets. Erm, I work in television so there’s quite a few secrets one has to keep professionally.
Uh, depends what they are. If it’s important, I guess so. If it’s gossip, not so much.
Is it ever a good thing to keep a secret from someone?
It depends on what the secret is. I think some tiny secrets are better kept secret but if it’s really having an impact on another person, I don’t think you should keep it away from the people.
I think it’s absolutely essential sometimes to keep secrets from people. Erm, I wouldn’t like to overdo it, I wouldn’t like to be too secretive but occasionally, yes, you need to.
I’m the kind of person who, if I think it’s better for the other person not to know, then I will keep the secret, although er, a lot of people will say that’s being dishonest. But er, I, I think deep down I’m quite an honest person, I always try and be pragmatic, and sometimes to be pragmatic you have to keep secrets.
It’s according to how much that person matters to you. If it’s to their benefit for you to keep it or to tell, you know what I mean? Sometimes you have to make that decision as a person: what’s important.
Oh, yes, absolutely. Yes, some things you shouldn’t tell people because, you know, it hurts their feelings.
If you’ve promised someone else that you’ll keep a secret, then definitely.
I think it is, because um, in the past there’s been times when I’ve revealed too much because I thought that keeping secrets wasn’t a good idea but that can lead to hurt feelings, so I do think that sometimes it’s necessary to, because if the person doesn’t know, it doesn’t necessarily hurt them. So, keeping a secret can be good.
Do you have a secret talent that your friends or family don’t know about?
Not many people know that, er, I used to play rugby. I was in the national Malaysian women’s team, so ... But I don’t play any more. I should do, but no. So, yeah, there’s a secret.
Well, I don’t know if it’s a talent but er, it’s definitely secret and it’s something that I usually bring out at parties and so on. It, it scares people, but it’s the ‘90 degree thumb’. [demonstrates] And it goes all the way back, from there right to the back. Sorry to freak people out, but ... That’s my secret talent.
I like to write stories but I don’t tell a lot of people about that because I think they’re not good enough to be told about, so I just keep them for myself, and maybe some close friends but, that’s it.
I used to like to cook. But in, like, the environment I grew up in you could never go to cookery classes in a mixed school. But as I’ve got older, you know what I mean, I do like to cook.
Well, I like to think I can actually sing, but all my friends and family think I can’t and I’m not sure why that is!
I don’t think so. I, I’m quite an open person so if I discovered a secret talent, I think people would know, so …
Sadly, when you get to my age, very few of your talents remain secret. You’ve tried most of them and tried to expose as many as you’ve got.