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Pass the Buck

Pass the Buck English, baby! Video Lesson

Date: Oct 05 2010

Themes: Soap Opera, Work

Grammar: Simple Future Tense

Intro

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2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

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Whether you’re a criminal or a slacker, the best way to avoid being blamed for something you did wrong or failed to do at all is to blame someone else. It’s certainly not an honorable thing to do, but it’s likely to work, at least for a while.

When you’re in trouble and try to pin the blame on someone else, it’s called passing the buck. You can also pass the buck if you just don’t want to deal with something that really is your responsibility. Say someone asks you for directions in your hometown. You don’t have time or don’t want to stop and give directions, so you suggest they ask in a nearby store. You have passed the buck to the people in the store.

Watch as Devan learns that some important work didn’t get done at the office and tries to figure out whose fault it is.

3. Watch - Watch the video without reading the dialog.

Dialog

1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.

Marni

Marni

Beren

Beren

Dale

Dale

Jason

Jason

Devan

Devan

Jeff

Jeff

Devan:  Hello! This is Devan. You didn’t get the report? Oh. I’m so sorry about that. I will get to the bottom of that] right away. You guys! Where is that advertising report? Linda just called. She never got it.

Beren:  The advertising report?

Devan:  Yeah.

Beren:  Oh! Jason said he was going to take care of it after he crunched some numbers, added some figures to it.

Devan:  Jason said that?

Beren:  Yeah, yeah!

Devan:  OK, I’ll go talk to him, then.

Dale:  Why did you say that, man? That’s not true.

Beren:  I was just passing the buck! I don’t want to deal with it right now!

Jason:  Hey!

Devan:  So, where is that report? Beren says that you were supposed to send it.

Jason:  No, no, no! Last I heard Jeff was supposed to look it over for legal stuff, or something, and then send it on. I never even saw it. I don’t know what Beren’s talking about. I think she must have just been trying to pass the buck to me or something.

Devan:  So, Beren was just passing the buck to you, then. It was really supposed to be Jeff sending it.

Jason:  Yeah. I know it sounds like I’m just trying to pass the buck to Jeff, but I really don’t know anything about it. It’s really not my fault.

Devan:  OK…I’ll call Jeff, then.

Jason:  OK, I’ll see you soon. Bye.

Jeff:  So, Devan, you wanted to see me?

Devan:   Jason says you were supposed to send me that report this morning, and it’s very important, and I didn’t get it!

Jeff:  I gave it to you when I handed you those carrots.

Devan:  No, you didn’t! So Jason wasn’t just passing the buck…

Jeff:  Nope.

Devan:  You really did send it to me. Whatever, this is Marni’s fault anyway. It’s always Marni’s fault.

Marni:  I do not think this is my fault! Don’t try to pass the buck to me! I’ve told you not to eat in the office.

 

Grammar Point

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Quizzes

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Lesson MP3

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Discussion

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An important client calls Devan and tells her that they didn’t receive some information they were expecting. Devan tries to figure out which of her employees is responsible for this.

She starts with Beren, who tells Devan that Jason was supposed to send the report. Dale knows this is a lie and asks Beren why didn’t tell Devan the truth. Beren explains that she’s just passing the buck to get out of trouble.

Devan calls Jason because he is home sick. He says that Jeff was supposed to send the report. When Devan asks Jeff about it, he says he gave it to her at the same time as he gave her some carrots. She must have gotten distracted and forgotten to send it herself. Devan desperately tries to pass the buck to Marni by simply saying it must be her fault somehow. Marni reminds her that she told her not to eat in the office, and if she hadn’t been eating, she probably would have remembered to send the report.

Have you ever passed the buck to someone? Has anyone ever tried to pass the buck to you?

 

Comments

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Staisy

Staisy

Russian Federation

It is a new expression for me, I’ve never heard it before.

11:32 PM Oct 20 2013 |

fabsir

fabsir

Brazil

I have passed the buck to someone and someone has passed the buck to me as well. At offices this is quite a common thing to happen. On one occasion my colleague tried to pin the blame on me for a mistake he had made. On another occasion I passed the buck to him as I was behind schedule with my work because he failed to do his bit on time.


I was passed the buck to when I wanted to cancel my telephone service. The telephone company clerks kept transfering me from department to department.


 

09:15 AM May 10 2012 |

 julito

julito

Argentina


 Many people dont´t like to take full responsibility by their wrongdoing ,and try to pass the  buck to others. I think this is a childlike  and  immature behaviour .

12:33 PM Mar 18 2011 |

Marcelolic

Marcelolic

Brazil

hehehe I'm going to confess,yes I did it sometimes…Who never did it before? :P And the reverse has happened too :P Hahaha

03:58 PM Oct 30 2010 |

MIGUEL051

Dominican Republic

IF I WERE THE RESPONSABLE, I WOULD NOT BE WORRIED ABOUT PASSING THE BUCK. I JUST HAD DONE MY JOB.

08:40 PM Oct 21 2010 |

ahmad133

ahmad133

Yemen

pass the buck ..ooh, everyone always try to pass the buck to me, but I cope with it          :)

03:38 PM Oct 11 2010 |

rebel lee

rebel lee

China

If I do something wrong, I wouldn't pass the buck to someone else. Actually, I am hard-working and responsible, most of the time I do right things.

So, if you do something wrong by accident, just be brave to admit it. And you should never do wrong things on purpose.

07:42 AM Oct 11 2010 |

kukuka

kukuka

Ukraine

Oh, people always try to pass the buck to me and I have to deal with it quite often.

06:15 AM Oct 11 2010 |

alhgag

alhgag

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

this lesson is ver good  i didn't do in my life at all  in my opion is not good

12:54 AM Oct 11 2010 |

zoebaby

zoebaby

China

do love this lesson very much,it happens in our life sometimes,but as the introduction said,it's not a honorable thing to do…i'd like to take it whatever i've done…my bro told me that…

06:42 PM Oct 10 2010 |

elkyhcy

elkyhcy

Hong Kong

I think everyone should accountable all duties they supposed to be done.  Sometimes, it is kind of human being to get rid of the trouble stuffs and pass the buck to someone else. In my side, I would like to take care of those which supposed are my responsibility and no more regret.

10:45 AM Oct 09 2010 |

Romio79

Romio79

Russian Federation

Very good lesson:) Well sometimes when I'm too busy I can pass the buck to my colleges and they can do the same. And I think it's okay. But when I say "pass the buck" I don't mean to blame someone unjustly or transfer your guilt to someone else. Such things are really bad for team work and if it happens at last it spoils relations in the office. So if you make a mistake it's better not to pin you guilt on someone else.

11:05 AM Oct 07 2010 |

Jenny Sangurima

Ecuador

It's a very useful lessonm, I'm learning a lot with the idioms, it's te hardest grammar point in English.

05:51 AM Oct 07 2010 |

rosendo

rosendo

Mexico

ohhh , come on , every one has passed the buck. 

dont be liar heheeh 

05:19 PM Oct 06 2010 |

CynthiaHe

CynthiaHe

China

is it that true for free?

12:40 AM Oct 06 2010 |

jejo

jejo

United States

Hey Guys>>>>

 

Very important QUESTION??

 

IS there any term mean "blame someone else" beside "pass the buck"

 

Please response

 

LOOKING forward to HEARING from YOUSmile

10:03 PM Oct 05 2010 |

joseve

Venezuela

is very interesting lesson, in venezuela use '' pass the ball'' which can mean the same

03:57 PM Oct 05 2010 |

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