Skydiving

Skydiving

Dec 11 2018

Intro

You’re standing in the open door of an airplane. The wind is blowing hard and your legs are shaking. The ground looks so far away. Everything is tiny… houses, cars, lakes and rivers. You know it will all be over in minutes, but it seems like so many things could go wrong. Do you jump?

People sometimes feel that unless they want to die with regrets, they need to take risks and try activities that seem dangerous. For example, they might jump from an airplane, swim with sharks, or climb a tall mountain. But you don’t have to leave your comfort zone to be happy with your life. What’s important to one person is not necessarily important to another!

Do Lily and Marni plan to go skydiving? Find out in this English lesson about an extreme sport.

Dialogue

Lily: I’m so excited this weekend. Guess what I’m doing.
Marni: I have no idea.
Lily: I’m going skydiving!
Marni: What??
Lily: Yeah, I’m so excited! It’s going to be so awesome.
Marni: Oh my god. Are you just an adrenaline junkie, or what?
Lily: I think it’s time to live a little. I’ve been wanting to skydive since I was really young. I’m at a time in my life where I need to take risks, and go for the thrill, and get outside my comfort zone. You know, that kind of thing.
Marni: I’m all for taking risks, but that just seems very dangerous to me. I mean, you could break your neck!
Lily: I prefer to concentrate on the thrill more than the “falling to my death” part.
Marni: OK, well that’s probably wise. But really? Skydiving? It just seems so dangerous.
Lily: But what’s more dangerous? Possible, actual danger, or the regrets you will face later having not done it?
Marni: I don’t think I will ever regret not jumping out of an airplane. I have things that I want to do in life, but skydiving is just not one of them. But I wish you the best of luck, and I’ll be so curious to hear about it.
Lily: I’ll send you a text on the way down.

Discussion

Marni can’t believe it, but it’s true: Lily is going skydiving. She says that she’s wanted to go since she was young, and that she thinks it’s important to live a little. Lily doesn’t want to reach the end of her life with any regrets, so she’s going for it.

Marni has absolutely no interest in going skydiving. It’s just too dangerous. She knows that a person could get really hurt by jumping from an airplane, so it’s not an activity on her “life list.” It’s hard to know if Marni is more nervous for Lily or excited for her.

Have you ever gone skydiving? Do you want to try it? Why or why not?

Grammar Point

Present Perfect Progressive

Lily says that she has been wanting to go skydiving since she was young. She uses present perfect progressive tense.

We form the present perfect progressive (sometimes called the “present perfect continuous”) with have/has been + main verb + ing. We use this tense to talk about an on-going action that began in the past, is still in progress, and may continue into the future.

For example, you might say, “I have been thinking about getting a new car for weeks.” You first thought of getting a new car weeks ago, you’re currently thinking of getting one, and unless you buy one or decide not to buy one right now, you’ll continue thinking about it.

Lily decided she wanted to skydive when she was young, she’s still interested today, and she’ll likely think about it until she actually goes skydiving.

Which is correct, “We’re hoping to go to India since last year,” or, “We have been hoping to go to India since last year”?

Quiz

  1. Why is Lily going skydiving?

  2. How does Marni feel about Lily’s plan?

  3. Which is an example of an extreme sport?

  4. Which sentence is in present perfect progressive tense?


See the full English lesson at English, baby!