FAST FOOD, OK ?
An intermediate level English dialogue.
In Britain, a lot of people say that teenagers do not eat good food. Television chefs have tried to encourage teenagers and young people to eat better food; but still, lots of young people in Britain prefer a daily diet of hamburgers and other fast food. Freeway magazine asked some British teenagers for their opinion about "fast food".
FREEWAY: People say that today's young people like nothing apart from "fast food"; do you think this is true? And what do you think of fast food?
GORDON: I don't have anything against it, really! It's O.K! I mean, you hear people saying it's all junk food, but most of the time it tastes good. Though I wouldn't want to live off it all the time!
DANNY: Yeah, if you mean hamburgers and whatever, there's nothing wrong with them. They're good food! They fill you up; and that's what food's supposed to do, isn't it? I mean there's meat, vegetables and bread and cheese; as far as I'm concerned, that's a pretty balanced diet.
GORDON: Yeah, hamburgers are all right. I mean, my mum says it's all junk, but frankly I can't really see what makes it any different from the stuff she cooks. I mean bread's bread, isn't it, and steak's steak, as far as I'm concerned.
KATHY: I tend to agree. Like, personally I'm not all that keen on hamburgers - they just make you fat - but if you go to a McDonald's or somewhere like that, you can get salads and things too....
JO: Well yes, 'course you can, but that's not the point, is it? I mean the thing about junk food is that it's all deep frozen, it's never fresh....
KATHY: What d'you mean? You can't get deep-frozen salads...
JO: Well maybe not the salads... but the rest's all deep frozen industrial stuff.
GORDON: But so's most of the food you get these days...
JO: It isn't at all! What about all the organic stuff, and fresh meat and things like that.
GORDON: Yes, OK... but who says its any better than deep frozen stuff?
DANNY: It certainly doesn't taste better, and it's much more hassle.
FREEWAY: Don't you eat fresh food at home then?
DANNY: Yeah, of course, from time to time; but most of the time my mum does stuff out of the deep freeze. It's good!
JO: what sort of stuff?
DANNY: All sorts of stuff. Pizzas, fish fingers, lasagna, things like that.
JO: You're not really suggesting that deep frozen pizza's as good as the real thing, are you?
DANNY: What d'you mean 'the real thing'? Deep frozen pizza's perfectly real, and fine by me... once it's been heated up, I mean!
KATHY: Anyway, who eats home-made pizza at home anyway? No-one does! D'you?
JO: No, 'cos I'm a vegetarian!
KATHY: That doesn't stop you eating pizza, does it?
JO: It depends what kind of pizza it is, doesn't it? I mean I love a good vegetarian pizza.
DANNY: D'you eat cheese then?
JO: Yes, I'm not vegan.
GORDON: I think you've got to be sensible about it really: like as I said, I like hamburgers, but I wouldn't want to go round eating them every day; and there's some things that are better than others, obviously. I mean, look at chicken nuggets f'r instance. People think they're eating meat, but they're 90% nugget and only 10% meat. I reckon things like that are a rip off; you're really being conned!
JO: But it's the same with all junk food, isn't it?
GORDON: What d'you know about it? You just said you were a veggie!
JO: Yeah, I am now, but I didn't use to be! If you want to know, the reason I went vegetarian is because I got sick of tasteless junk food.
DANNY: Maybe you ate the wrong stuff! Most of the things I eat are pretty tasty, to be quite honest!
JO: Yeah, I'm sure they are! But it's all done with chemicals and flavourings, isn't it? You never know what you're eating!
DANNY: So what, it's not poison, is it? You can kill yourself by eating poisonous mushrooms, can't you, and they're quite natural...
GORDON: And organic....
JO: Well look at mad cow disease...
GORDON: Well that was an extreme case, wasn't it? An' anyway, how many people caught it? About twenty! Probably as many as died from eating bad fruit....
conned: deceived, tricked - diet: what you eat - fine by me: good, in my opinion - frankly: honestly - junk: rubbish, very poor quality - hassle: trouble - I'm not all that keen on: I don't particularly like - mad cow disease: a fatal illness of cows, BSE - organic: natural, produced without chemicals - pretty: quite - rip off: a deception, very bad value for money - stuff: things - the point: the subject - vegan: someone who eats no animal products at all.
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► Blank fill exercise: An interactive exercise. Complete this part of the dialogue from memory. Try to remember what was said in the original discussion. The boxes will expand to accept whatever you write.
GORDON: I don't have
DANNY: Yeah, if you mean hamburgers and
GORDON: Yeah, hamburgers are all
When correcting the
blank-fill exercise, take care to allow
any acceptable alternatives, not just the words that are in the
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Revised 2020 . Originally published in Freeway, the Intermediate level English newsmagazine.
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