(Upper Intermediate +, conversation class about humour, slang, colloquial and bad language used). Understanding humour.
Do you understand humour or comedy in English?
Is it weird?
Can you think of examples that you like?
What type of humour do you like?
Name some of your favourite films or TV shows?
What do you think of American humour?
What do you think of British humour?
What about Jewish comedians? Mel Brooks? Woody Allen? Seinfeld?
What type of humour is it? Use as many adjectives as possible.
1. Please review the following words / phrases / bad language from the video & script.
fictionalized version of himself
celebrities playing themselves.
The plots and subplots
the subject matter
to revolve around
letting go (to let go)
an old fart
a stick in the mud
a pain in the ass
Words / phrases / bad language from the Script:
taking up two spaces.
you’re gonna leave
then that car is gonna get blamed
I really give a shit what you think of my parking job, ok pal?
( I really don’t give a shit what you think !)
to pull in
“over the line”
2. Please read the information about Curb Your Enthusiasm
Curb Your Enthusiasm is an American comedy television series produced and broadcast by HBO, which premiered on October 15, 2000. As of 2011, it has completed 80 episodes over eight seasons. The series was created by Seinfeld co-creator Larry David, who stars as a fictionalized version of himself. The series follows David in his life as a semi-retired television writer and producer in Los Angeles and later New York City. Curb often features guest stars, and some of these appearances are by celebrities playing themselves.
The plots and subplots of the episodes are established in an outline written by David and the dialogue is largely improvised by the actors themselves. Much like Seinfeld, the subject matter in Curb Your Enthusiasm often involves the stuff of daily life, and plots often revolve around Larry David’s many faux pas, and his problems with certain social conventions and expectations, as well as his annoyance with other people’s behaviour. The character has a hard time letting such annoyances go unexpressed, which leads him often into awkward situations.
So, Larry David is an asshole. He is a constant complainer. He always has something to complain about. He could be described as “an old fart”, “a stick in the mud”, “a pain in the ass” or much worse.
Do you know anyone like Larry David?
Please read the script out loud, paying attention to the bolded words and phrases.
Larry: Excuse me, are you happy with that park?
Guy: yeah, what’s wrong with it?
Larry: You’re way outside the line, you’re taking up two spaces.
Guy: I’m like- an inch over the line
Larry: NO, you’re a foot over the line, you’re taking up two spaces and the next car is also going to be taking up two spaces , then you’re gonna leave, then that car is gonna get blamed. This is chaos, society can’t function like this.
Larry: You have to be in the line, the way its supposed to be !
Guy: Here’s an idea, why don’t you mind your own business?
Larry: Well, I suppose that’s an idea, not a very good one though.
Guy: Oh No?
Larry: Just say “you know what?, I’ll do better next time”
Guy: I did fine, I did fine
Larry: No, that’s not fine
Guy: I don’t need to do better
Larry: No, you didn’t do fine, you need to do better.
Guy: No, I did fine
Larry: That ! That’s just shoddy !
Guy: I really give a shit what you think of my parking job, ok pal?
Larry: This is not an open field, this is not a farm, ok? Just park your car between the lines, its not that hard ! Just pull in between the lines.
Guy: Why don’t you stay between the lines of your own God damn business?
Why don’t you stay confined within the lines of not being an asshole ?
Coz you’re way over that line alright!
Larry: The only person who’s the asshole here is the pig parker !
Guy: Pig parker?
Guy: So you’re calling me a pig?
Larry: A pig parker?
Guy: hey, you know what? Have a really nice day !
Larry: ok, I will, I’m sure you will too at everyone else’s expense
Guy: Yeah! I will, I will.
4. Please watch the scene from
Curb Your Enthusiasm: Episode 75 – Larry and Pig Parking
What’s his problem in the scene?
What’s his problem generally?
Do you like this type of humour?
Some people say that it makes you feel nervous, do you agree/ disagree?
Have you any stories similar to this?
The slogan says “there’s a little bit of Larry David in everyone”. Do you agree?
The slogan says “deep inside you know you’re him”. Explain?
How does British or American humour compare with Spanish or Catalan humour?
6. Exercise using new vocabulary & bad language
plots and subplots , subject matter , to revolve around , faux pas
social conventions , annoyance , to let go, unexpressed, awkward
Please use the words above in the following sentences:
1. I made such a ______________ at the party last night that I had to leave! It was extremely _____________ .
2. It is sometimes difficult to adjust to the ________________ of new countries and traditions.
3. If you search your inbox by _______________ look for the words “rude asshole” and you’ll find it.
4. The complicated ___________________ of Shakespears´ stories always end in a lot of people dying.
5. Txell is so big headed! She thinks the world _________________ her!
6. In the end I had to __________ of my Vespa, it was just too old and difficult to maintain. I really loved that bike but it caused me much _______________ .
7. John and Joe don’t get on, there are a lot of things __________ between them.
an asshole, a complainer, an old fart, a stick in the mud, a pain in the ass, taking up , an inch , a foot , shoddy, I really don’t give a shit, to pull in, over the line
Please use the words above in the following sentences:
1. What an ___________ !! he just took my parking space !
2. Doing my taxes is a real __________________ !
3. There was hundreds of old books in my fathers house __________ a lot of space.
4. There are 12 ______ in ________ .
5. My boss accused me of _________ work, can you believe it?
6. My grandfather is very old and he really is ____________, he is never happy with the food we prepare for him.
7. To be very honest, ______________________ who you choose to date, its not any of my business.
8. I think that John will be fired this time, he definitely stepped ___________ when he called the boss __________________ .