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Guess Who's Coming To Dinner

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner

Date: Nov 10 2006


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

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When you are in a foreign country, there are often social norms that are difficult to figure out. Eventually you will make friends, and you will be invited to go for drinks, or go to a show. Someone might even invite you to have dinner at their home.

In the US, when you go to someone’s house for dinner, it is customary to bring something along to offer the hosts.

Listen to Amanda and Kevin talk about what they do when they are invited to a friend’s for dinner.


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.





Kevin:  I was at this dinner party last Saturday. It was so fun. I really enjoyed it. But I noticed, um, there were probably ten couples that showed up and three of them didn’t bring anything.

Amanda:  Oh, really? So they didn’t bring any wine or salad or dessert?

Kevin:  No flowers. Nothing. Isn’t that a big faux pas?

Amanda:  It kind of is. And it depends… if you’re with really close friends, maybe it’s OK. But if you are invited somewhere where you’re just making their acquaintance and meeting them or the first time, you kinda want to make a good impression.

Kevin:  Yeah.

Amanda:  And help out the host. It’s kind of like you’re reciprocating for them cooking for you that evening.

Kevin:  Yes.

Amanda:  So what did you bring?

Kevin:  I brought a nice bottle of wine.

Amanda:  That’s nice.

Kevin:  Um, you know, ‘cause depending on how close you are with the person, you might say, you know, “What can I bring?” Otherwise, you just bring something, you know. Because a friend might say, “I want you to bring the dessert,” for example.

Amanda:  Right.

Kevin:  But if you don’t know the person so well, of course, you always show up with something. I kind of bring wine by default.

Amanda:  I agree. If I ever had to show up empty-handed, I think I’d feel like an ass.

Kevin:  It’s totally not cool, I agree.

Amanda:  Not cool at all.



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Amanda and Kevin agree that showing up to someone’s house for dinner with nothing to share is a big faux pas.

In the US, many people bring bread, or something to drink. A friend might ask you to bring something specific like dessert or salad. You could also bring a small gift or flowers. In general, the idea is to bring something that adds to the experience of the evening.

Do you go to dinner parties? What do you bring along?



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In most African countries your not expected to bring anything when invited for dinner and it's no social blunder.

06:56 PM Oct 28 2010 |



I totally agree to the point of bringing something or giving a hand to the host when invited to a dinner.
It’s just sort of basic courtesy a decent person should have.

12:51 AM Nov 15 2006 |



OOhh, I thought it is customery in the Eastern part of the globle like Indian sub-continent. Nice to learn that it is more or less the same in the US. Nice but dont it relates some thing give and take. In the great old days in India, it is said, when you depart with some thing, dont expect it back, rather such things are un-conditional.

05:28 PM Nov 11 2006 |




We have the same norms in Italy.Usually when we are invited we don’t like to show up empty-handed.
Sometimes i bring a nice fruit salade.

03:37 PM Nov 10 2006 |



sorry:) once more. you know i’m from ukraine. when u r onvited 2 some party u may bring what ever u like. some wine, vodka, cake… u know it depends where u r goin’...

12:34 PM Nov 10 2006 |

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