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Full Transcript - Episode 4

Episode 4 - Transcript: Image

Leo the Arsonist, crypto-criminals, elephant dung, and wunderlust...

J: Good morning São Paulo!

G: And anywhere else.

J: And anywhere else. Yes, Brazil, basically.

G: Yes.

J: Er, podcast number four.

G: Number four. Here we are!

J: Today we have, er, What Caught My Eye this week. We have a few articles from that. We have an interview – with, er, Pablo Jacinto.

G: And who’s Pablo Machinto?

J: Jacinto.

G: Jacinto.

J: He’s a lawyer. He-he plans to travel around the world in a Winnebago, I think.

G: Ah, very nice.

J: Or a car or something like this.

G: He’s got the Wanderlust, eh?

J: He’s got the wanderlust. He wants to travel, and travel, and travel.

G: Oh, I look forward to s-talking to him, then.

J: So, qu-quite an interesting individual. In addition, we’ll have some more tests from the grammar guru. At least from me, I-I have a couple of tests for you this week.

G: Oh good, I’ll look forward to those.

J: And, er, other than that, the normal, er, Samba Buzz buzz-iness.

G: Yeah, we’ll have a bit of a buzz going, I’m sure.

J: There you go.

G: Get the buzz on…


G: So Jay, er, what caught your eye in the news this week?

J: I have a news article, that I don’t honestly know if it’s serious, or funny, or controversial… I don’t know what it is, because it’s almost so absurd, it’s-it’s a little bit of everything.

G: It must be about Trump, then.

J: No, er, actually not. What do, Bolsonaro, Leonardo di Caprio and Amazon all have in common?

G: Alright, this sounds like a joke. I would…um… I don’t know.

J:  Er, they all have in common that-that Amazon is burning and somehow they’re all incriminated in this. The Brazilian president, Bolsonaro, this week said that somehow Leonardo Di Caprio is to blame for all the Amazon fires that are going on. So the Amazon is burning and, somehow, an actor from Hollywood is responsible for this.

G: Hm, that makes perfect sense, really.

J: Of course, maybe in-in Jair’s world, I don’t know, it’s possible, b-but of course there’s no evidence to support the fact that-that Leonardo Di Caprio was involved in this.

G: So what would make him say such a thing then, if there’s no evidence?

J:  Well, he has given support, financial support, to some NGOs that are fighting the fires.

G: Ah.

J: And somehow this-this was redirected to the fact that he’s causing the fires. Now th-that has nothing to do with it.

G: Hm.

J: I-I wouldn’t actually kn-know why…what financial incentive he would have to destroy the Amazon forest. That-that makes no sense to me.

G: I was wondering what incentive Bolsonaro would have to suggest such a thing actually, but I guess he doesn’t like the idea of people interfering in Brazil, maybe?

J: Well, I dunno. Either that or perhaps he’s supporting farmers who are burning the rainforest so th-that they can increase their soya production.

G: Ah. Could be that. Although, I was watching the other day that, um, a program showed that some fire-fighters become arsonists actually. A lot of fires are started by fire-fighters.

J: Fire-fighters arsonists? I-I did hear a story or two about that.

G: So I don’t know exactly what causes that. I think maybe it’s th-the sheer exhilaration of fighting a fire that they-they miss it when they’re not doing it, or something. But it’s-it’s it’s a psychological phenomenon that’s been i-identified around the world.

J: Well, yes or…who knows? It could also be that they’re actually stim… they’re trying to get a pay raise.

G: Hm.

J: So then they justify that they should get more money because there are so many fires.

G: Right. That would make sense.

J: They could…er, it’s possible… I-I actually do know about one strange case in California where a local fire-fighter, who was somewhat of a hero for always being the first responder by the fires. Now it turns out that he was able to go undetected for a period of about 5 years because he was a fire-fighter and knew how to start the things without being caught.

G: Yes.

J: So, in a way, the-he was always first on the case to-to put out the fire because he set the fire himself.

G: Uh-huh.

J: So…

G: Although I don’t think this is Leonardo’s motivation in this case, no?

J: No, I-I see… I don’t see Leonardo -i-i-in-involved in this in any way. That’s just absurd. What else did you have for me?

G: Um, I have a-an item here that follows on from something, er, we were discussing a couple of weeks ago, actually. It’s, er…

J: In pod two?

G: In pod two. It’s been announced today that the National Agency of Sanitary Vigilance…

J: Ok, that’s…

G: …this is a translation of a…

J: Sanitary vigilance? Is that meaning that people who watch the toilets?

G: I don’t know but it’s um…it’s a group here in Brazil that, um, are responsible for approving the sale of medical products.

J: Ok.

G: And they have announced today that they have approved the sale of cannabis-based products for medicinal use.

J: Cannabis.

G: And they have given a three-year license. So this is a first for Brazil.

J: But…but now does that mean that the-the politicians have approved the laws for this as well?

G: Um, I wouldn’t like to say what the relationship between the Sanitary Vigilance Agency and the politicians is but, um, implicitly, I guess there’s somebody involved, yes.

J: So, it’s possible that we have, let’s say, locally grown, medicinal marijuana?

G: Ah, no, because in actual fact they have not permitted the growing of medical marijuana – only the manufacture, so…

J:  So-so y-you can have it and you can use it but you just can’t grow it.

G: Exactly. So the manufacturers will have to import-import the, er, marijuana from other countries – possibly your home state of Colorado, who knows?

J: It’s possible. I-it’s good business for Colorado as far as I’m concerned.

G: Yes.

J: But that’s a little bit absurd that you can actually use it here but you can’t actually grow it.

G: Exactly.

J: Hm. Makes you wonder. Anyway…

G: Anyway, so that’s er, I thought I’d include that one as it was related to what we’ve been talking about previously. Um, what about elsewhere? Have you got anything else to include, this week?

J: Yeah-yes, there was something. There was one thing that caught my eye that I-I had to go quite far to…all the way to North Korea for this. Now you might ask – ‘why North Korea?’ Well North Korea is currently under international sanctions because they want to limit North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons.

G: Ok.

J: Right? So there’s a lot of financial and, er, sanctions and consequences against trading and, let’s say, letting North Korea earn more money. This week there was a United States citizen that was arrested because he-he’s a crypto-currency developer.

G: A crypto-currency developer?

J: A crypto-currency developer.

G: So what’s a crypto-currency developer?

J: Well, a crypto-currency is like a virtual currency.

G: Ok.

J: Like Bitcoin or something like that. Everybody knows Bitcoin.

G: Hm.

J: And, he developed a different kind of crypto-currency and then he proceeded to g-go tell the Chi… the North Korean government how to avoid being detected. So they can basically whitewash, or they can launder, their illegal money through crypto-currency.

G: Ok, so, I-I guess th-the details around that are kind of complex, probably, in terms of…?

J: Well they are, but l-let me give you a couple of details here…erm…because I-I think the-the numbers are quite shocking for me. They estimate that, er, Pyongyang has – that’s the capital of North Korea – has close to, er, 700 million US dollars in crypto-currency at this moment.

G: Through this one guy?

J: Through-through this one guy and through this one holding. So that-that’s close to one billion US dollars…             

G: Wow.

J: …that they potentially laundered. So I think one thing that’s quite curious is that this man who developed the crypto-currency goes to North Korea, gives them intelligence on how to avoid being detected, and then they can continue to whitewash the money and avoid international sanctions. Of course, this is quite serious and the United States Justice Department is not going to let this guy go anytime soon.

G: Hm.


J: So that was my international news. Did you have anything-anything else, Gee?

G: I have a question actually. Um, are you familiar with what ‘dung’ is?

J: Dung? Yes, dung I know. Dung is poop. That’s crap, or…or excrement.

G: Yes, basically. Um, have you ever tasted any beer that you thought tasted like dung?

J: No. I try to avoid those kinds of beers.

G: I-I have. I’ve tasted quite a few and, my goodness, it’s not good! Anyhow, I never thought I’d see the day but somebody in South Africa, a couple… they have turned their hand to making gin from elephant dung!

J: Gin?

G: Gin.

J: Er, how is that possible?

G: Well, let me explain. They live very close to where the elephants, er, reside and they go around and they collect buckets, or bags full of this dung that the elephant deposits…

J: That can’t taste very well for the gin, though?

G: Well, then what they do then is they clean it, apparently. They remove the s-s, er, sand and the soil and then what remains is the material that the elephant has consumed and a lot of the things the elephant consumes are not digested apparently, so the plant and the fruit material – it remains intact in many cases.

J: Now this is very curious because we suddenly go from laundering money to laundering dung!

G: Exactly. That’s a great – great link there. Yes, so, having laundered the dung, they then sterilize it and then they…

J: I hope so because…

G: …they dry it and leave it in storage and it becomes almost like a source of herbs and spices.

J: Oh, that sounds… B-but that does remind me… I think there’s a coffee that has – not with elephants, but with, I believe, wild cats in Minas. Th-there’s this particular kind – maybe it’s a bird – I d-don’t actually remember what animal but it’s…anyway some animal ingests the coffee beans, then the-through the excrement they go, and they filter, they clean, they launder, and that gives it, let’s say, an added aroma, or an added taste, to the coffee. And th-they sell it for actually quite expensive…

G: I have heard about that for monkeys.

J: H-how much – how much does this elephant dung cost?      

G: Anyhow, the elephant gin…

J: Oh, elephant gin!

G: …has a- has a name, and it’s called Indlovu, which apparently is the Zulu word for elephant. And it’s, er, it retails for $32 per bottle. So for any of you interested in trying some dung-based gin, then rush on down to your nearest South African supermarket.

J: I’m-I’m just trying to find out what the marketing strategy for that is. How-how would you actually market that?

G: Only the best! The biggest and the best.

J: The biggest and the best.       

                                                                                                       End of Part 1 


Episode 4 - Transcript: Text

J: Here we are back in Studio Y, here in Vila Olimpia. Thank you, Pablo for coming and joining us today.

P: You’re welcome.

J: Er, we need to give a little bit of background on Pablo so everybody knows who he is.

G: Sounds good. Welcome, by the way!

P: Thank you very much.

J: So Pablo, please correct me if anything is not right. Er, Pablo’s a lawyer. He works in São Paulo. He has a wife and two children and his dream is to go travel around the world in a Sprinter. Right?

P: Yes.

G: What’s a Sprinter?

P: It’s a car.

G: So how did you get into law as a career? What made you choose the legal route?

P: Actually, I didn’t choose. Somebody choose (sic) for me.

G: Are you talking about God, here or…

P: I was-I was very young and I used to work for a big, er, businessman. And he asked me wh-what I was-was going to choose for studying and I said ‘administration’, and he said, ‘oh no, no don’t do that – everybody does and it doesn’t work. Er, the future is Law.’

J: Law?

P: Yes. ‘And you should to…should study that.’ And I said, ‘ok, let’s do it.’

G: How-how long have you been a lawyer now? How many years?

P: 15 years.

G: And how would you say that the legal sector has changed in those fifteen years since you’ve been working?

P: I think it’s changed a lot – especially right now. The big change is coming right now.

J: Why is that? Why is the big change coming right now?

P: Er, I think the technology is coming for all-all kinds of areas, but especially in our area. The-the lawyers that was (sic) not working, not work with technology, they will stay behind.

G: In what way? How has technology…how has it become important?

P: Er, because you can use, er, analytics, you know, to-to to predict what the judge will decide.

G: Ok. By looking at previous cases?

P: Exactly. I study every judge that I will work. I can study the d-decisions.

J: Ok.

P: But you know it’s a small part. With technologic (sic) artificial…

J: Artificial intelligence.

P: You can do that with more efficient-efficiency.

J: Tell us a little bit about your plans to travel the world.

P: Let me tell something before that.

J: Ok.

P: Er, I-I studied a lot. I-I make (sic) my own company and, er, I didn’t have any connections, for…at that time. All my family is from the south of Brazil. A-and people say you’re crazy – it will not work. And it worked!

J: B-but the people from the south said you are crazy to go to São Paulo? Or the people in São Paulo…

P: My friends, my friends, yeah, my friends in São Paulo.

J: So basically, every…

P: They say – ‘stay here where you work because here you are safe, you know you have your-your salary and everything and don’t go to open your own office…and then you don’t know anybody an-and you don’t know if you get money for that.

J: Ok. So, that was a risk.

P: Yes, that was a risk. I-I took that risk and it worked. And w-when my office was ok and it was doing good, and I say (sic) – ‘now I will have, I will live my own dream, that was travel around the world.’ They said – ‘you are crazy, you give up your office and company.’ And I said – ‘yes, I want to do that.’ And I did it. And when I came back, everybody say – ‘you are going to lose everything.’ When I came back, actually, some stuff didn’t work well but at the end it was the opposite. My-my-my office grew a lot. Today is…I think is the triple that it used to be before.

J: Th-three times the size?

P: Three times.

J: So-so, let me get this straight. What you are saying is, you had your own company, your own law office?

P: Yes.

J:  You went on vacation, and when you came back your company grew?

P: It was not a vacation.

J: Oh, ok!

P: It was living a dream!

J: Ok but basically, you left your office and the company started to do better than when you were there!

P: No!

J: Ah, ok. I just…

P: After I came back!

J: Ok, after you came back.

P: Yes.

G: So was that because you traveled or not?

P: Because I traveled!

G: Why do you say…why do you say it improved because you traveled?

P: I used my experience to do better. You know. Like-like, er, spend less and do more. But you (sic) came back to Brazil married, with-with a child. Er, and when we was (sic) coming, we said – ‘I-I want to-to offer to my-to this child this great experience that is traveling around the world. We went to 33 countries before.

J: Thirty-three countries?

P: Thirty-three countries. So right at the beginning when we came back, we-we knew that we was (sic) going to travel again.

J: Ok.

P: We didn’t know how.

J: Right.

P: Then, er, the last years we are (sic) studying, we are following people that is (sic) traveling around the world with children, and we decided to do by car. A motorhome is too big…

J: Ok.

P: …so something…

J: Something in-between.

P: Yeah. Then we decide…we studied, er, a Sprinter. Because it’s a car. It’s easy to travel. It’s easy t-to go anywhere. It’s not too big, and you can make a house inside, complete – a perfect house.

G: Wow.

J: How do you plan to educate your kids? Because how old are your children at the moment?

P: Now they-they are two and four.

J: Two and four.

P: Er, and…

J: At a certain age they will have to go to school, right?

P: Yes. We are doing home schooling. We are going to be their teachers.

J: What’s it like to go camping with two young kids, because your-your children are-are less…both are less than five? How do you manage with two young children camping in the jungle?

P:  Oh it’s great. I-we start (sic) camping with him w-when they were like, er, er, seven month.

J: Seven months?

P: Yeah. Yes, very young. I-I always say that children, they-they don’t mind, er, about where or the-the-the material things. They want to stay with us. So, we…is a…the best moment for them to stay with us all…all…all the time. We sleep together and we-we wake up together in a tent, very close. And, er, we pass all the day…er…have experience with the nature, you know – even (sic) begin to a little ant to a big animal. So a river or a tree and th-they love. It’s magical for them. It’s a…we always…we have a-a stronger connection between us.

J: Between the parents and the children, you think?

P: Exactly, when we do that. Because when, when we are in a city, in our home…and we-we are with them but we are using our mobile or thinking about work or thinking about our responsibilities but when we are in the middle of nowhere, with no signs, er, we-we are more aware of our relationship.

G: T-you mentioned safety. Um, to a lot of people the idea of driving around continents like South America and Africa wouldn’t sound very safe. Is there anywhere you would consider unsafe to go and drive or anywhere that worries you?

P: Um, it’s hard to say. I think p- the world is safer than people tell, you know – the feeling that people have because people see the news and they see only…

J: …bad news!

P: …bad news…violence…and…and but there… Everybody that travel (sic) around the world – and I have contact with th-many people – all this-they have the same feeling. The world is safer than it seems. Like my dream is go…when I…after I reach Europe, go from M-morocco to South Africa in one coast and go to Egypt from another coast.

G: Nice.

P: Some people say – ‘Oh, it’s impossible! It’s dangerous! It’s crazy!’ Let’s see. I think…I think it’s possible. Er, so…and I-I will, take my family so I believe it’s safe, it’s possible!

G: Yes. Has to be, no?

P: But many people that travel around the world say for me – ‘oh, if you live in São Paulo you are able to travel to anywhere!’

G: After São Paulo, everywhere else is easy, yeah?

P: Exactly.

J: Much easier. Very nice! So, now I-I believe you have, actually, in one of your travels you have actually been to Mount Everest, correct?

P: To the base camp, yes.

J: To the base camp of Mount Everest. So you climbed up…how far did you climb up Mount Everest?

P: Er, we started 2800 meters.

J: Yeah.

P: And we went…we walked for going back twenty days we went to five hundred and…five thousand and four hundred meters.

J: 5400 meters?

P: Yes.

J: Th-that’s quite high.

G: It’s getting up there.

J: That’s quite high. Wh-what was that like that…there was 20 days of walking, right?

P: Yes.

J: Did you have any problems along – during that trip?

P: Yes. I have (sic) a-a very bad stomach ache problem and, er, diarrhea, vomit, because the al…there was a bacteria probably but…but the problem is the altitude.

J: It was aggravated by the altitude?

P: Yes. Exactly, yeah, yeah. When you start to walk, you see rivers and big trees and a lot of life. And, er, you keep walking and th-the trees get smaller, smaller, smaller, then you see only…suddenly you don’t see even that – only rocks, rocks and ice. There is no life there. I could hear the mountain say – ‘Here is not your place. You don’t belong to-to this place.’

J: Ok, but, so if the mountain is talking to you and you and your body is talking to you too. And it’s saying – uh, I don’t feel so good. Why don’t you just turn around and go back down the mountain?

P: Because I-I think the big secret is to-to be aware of your limits and respect that, because you can die. Er, but I…everyday I-I woke up feeling good…

J: Yes.

P: …see (sic) around. I was like this is, er, almost a miracle to be there…is a big opportunity. So I think (sic) I will try a little bit…a little bit more. And every day I try a little bit more, a little bit more, a little bit more until I get th…I got there.

J: Not everybody that goes to Everest comes back. Because here w-we think, reading the stories – ‘Ah that person is totally crazy. He left his family. Can you understand the motivation of somebody that goes there and goes past the limits?

P: I think it’s a big opportunity to know better yourself. You know y-you really keep in touch w…it’s a deep inside your mind, inside your body, your limits. You…you keep for like 7-8-9 hours per day and, er, of-of course you talk a little bit with people around you but most of the time y-you are in contact with yourself. So, it makes that challenge yourself…and know you…know you-yourself better, it’s…it’s very, er… It’s a big motivation and they…you…of course you have a…like base camp. It’s the ultimate goal. But there is nothing there. It’s not inter…not…there is no landscape there! You see a lot of rocks and some tents and nothing more. The-the the beauty of this walk is on the way, you know.

J: It’s the journey.

P: It’s the journey, yes.

J: Not necessarily the destination.

P: Exactly.

G: So thanks very much for coming on, Pablo. It’s been…

J: Yes, thank you.

G: …it’s been a lot of fun having you here.

P: Thank you for your invite…for your invitation. I can tell that English is very important for this trip. I think…and er, we use all the time English. Like some-sometimes we have to use mimic – like in China, in Russia, but, er, the English is…was very, very, very important.

J: Ok. Great.

G: Excellent.

J: Thank you. Thank you Pablo for coming in today to…

P: You’re welcome.

J: …Studio Y.

G: Yes, thank you very much.

P: Thank you.          


                                                                                                        End of Part 2 


J: By they way, what do you have for us?

G: Um, right, this week I have a piece on, um, subject-verb agreement. This is quite a tricky one actually.

J: That’s a coincidence.

G: Um, because a lot of native speakers struggle with subject-verb agreement.

J: Ok.

G: So let me ask you a question. Which of these is correct? ‘Neither the teacher nor the student knows the answer…’

J: Ok.

G: …or ‘neither the teacher nor the student know the answer.’

J: Knows the answer.

G: Well the correct answer is ‘neither the teacher nor the student knows the answer.’ So I think you were right. Now the key here, obviously is, um, actually the word that comes closest to the verb. So because student is singular, then the verb agrees with student. So had it been – ‘neither the teacher nor the students,’ then it would be plural – ‘neither the teacher nor the students know the answer,’ because students is plural.

J: Right.

G: I’ve got one more for you, very quickly.

J: Ok.

G: Um, ‘the majority of the pizzas have been eaten’ or ‘the majority of the pizzas has been eaten’?

J: The majority? So the question is, is ‘majority’ singular or plural? And in this case, majority, can be singular or plural, depending on the object that follows.

G: Ok.

J: So in-in this case, th-the majority of the pizzas, I think you said…

G: Yes.

J: …pizzas-pizzas is plural.

G: Have. Have been eaten. Correct. Correct answer! Yes. So basically again it depends on whether the object is plural or singular, as to whether the agree…the verb agrees in the plural or singular form.

J:  Very nice.

G: So in this case, pizzas is plural, so it’s ‘have’.       

J: My topic is also subject-verb agreement. Er, so I have a couple for you.

G: Alright, let’s go!

J: Now in this case, it’s making verbs agree after prepositional phrases. So would you say – ‘the cost of the books for all of his classes are quite high.’

G: Well here you have what I would call a ‘noun clause’. Um, so basically the subject is a phrase, which is ‘the cost of the books for all his classes’, and therefore in this case the verb agrees with the first noun in the phrase. So ‘cost’ is singular, so it would be ‘is’ quite high.

J: Correct. So the correct phrases should be – ‘the cost of the books for all his classes is quite high.’ Ok. One more. Correct or incorrect? ‘The ideas suggested at the meeting of the council was well received by most attendees.’ Many plurals and many singulars to choose from. Which is correct?

G: But essentially you have the same situation. Um, it’s one noun clause, and the first noun in the noun clause is ideas, which is – you did say ideas, plural, didn’t you?

J: Yes, ideas, correct.

G: So, therefore, the verb should agree with the word ideas, which would be plural.

J: Yes. Now I-I have a small tip for this. Simply take out the extra information. So you could simply read this sentence – ‘the ideas was well received by most attendees.’ Now that’s som… you’re going to recognize that immediately as incorrect.

G: That’s true.

J: Because English is different than Portuguese, in that if the subject has an ‘s’ the verb will not.

G: Ok.

J: In present tense. Present tense. So a-and th-then I’m talking about ‘goes’, ‘does’, ‘moves’ – any kinds of those situations.

G: There is one exception to that.

J: Of course!

G: Which is the word ‘news’.

J: Ok, I g…

G: It’s the rare situation of a non-countable noun with an ‘s’ at the end.

J:  Yes. It does happen.

G: Great. That works.

J: Ok. So here we go with another edition of Samba Buzz, with two zees.

G: Or two zeds.

J: And thank (you) everybody for listening to this week’s edition. As always, if you wish to contact us, write us through the We will try to reply as quickly as possible, and – anything else you’d like to mention, Gee?

G: You can always get us on our website too at

J: And please everybody, please feel free to check out the-the script that we have for…or the transcript that we have about this particular podcast. We present that in timely fashion, as quick as possible after the release, and it’s always on our website and it is a source material that you can use to improve your listening.

G: So I guess that’s it for this week. We will be back again next week. What have we got for next week?

J: Next week, I’m not quite sure. We might have an interview with a doctor.

G: Ooh dear.

J: Or we might not. It’s going to be a surprise podcast.

G: We are going up in the world.

J: We are. Ok, thank you everybody.

G: Thank you. See you next time!

J: Bye-bye.


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Episode 4 - Transcript: Text
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