—By Liang Shiqiu
用某物招待某人entertained sb with sth
He and his wife Helen were very hospitable and often entertained us with tea or potluck.
As the old saying goes, “For a day’s discomfort, entertain a guest; for a year’s discomfort, build a house; for a life’s discomfort, take a concubine.” Since entertaining involves only a day’s unease and does no real harm, we might as well entertain every now and then.
🎈（对……）有害，不利 do harm (to…)
Unlike some of the other insect eaters, spiders never do the least harm to us or our belongings.
🎈有时，偶尔，时常every now and then/again
Every now and again she checked to see if he was still asleep.
By entertaining, I mean inviting friends over for a drink and a simple meal at home. I do not mean inviting one’s cronies for a business dinner in a restaurant, complete with wine in golden goblets and exquisite foods on jade plates.
🎈邀请某人到家中 invite sb over/round/around
🎈crony n. 好友，密友a person that sb spends a lot of time with
[usually pl.] cronies (often disapproving贬义)
He was playing cards with his cronies.
🎈结账 settle account
For a simple home meal, the wife is usually the cook, so a consultation with her is essential before you decide on the particular dinner.
These consultations generally take ten or fifteen days before any consensus can be achieved, because too many factors need to be considered. Neither husband nor wife alone can make this decision.
an opinion that all members of a group agree with
（就……）达成共识 reach consensus /reach a consensus (about/on sth)
The first thing you need to consider is who to invite. The guest of honor is selected first, and then other candidates are vetted for compatibility.
🎈主宾，贵宾guest of honor
🎈vet v. 审查
to find out about a person’s past life and career in order to decide if they are suitable for a particular job
All candidates are carefully vetted for security reasons.
Stuffed shirts from the bureaucracy, wretched pedagogues struggling against starvation, potbellied merchants stinking of copper coins, and pompous dandies who specialize in currying favor… if they find themselves at the same table they may feel as out of place as chickens caged with rabbits.
🎈自命不凡的人，爱摆架子的人 a stuffed shirt
🎈pedagogue n. 教师，好为人师的人
a teacher; a person who likes to teach people things, especially because they think they know more than other people
🎈potbellied adj.大腹便便的having a large stomach that sticks out
Her breath stank of garlic.
🎈讨好，奉承，拍…的马屁 curry favor with…
Politicians are eager to promote their ‘happy family’ image to curry favor with voters.
🎈位置不当，不得体，不适当 out of place
Some of these files seem to be out of place.
I felt completely out of place among all these successful people.
Collecting together guests who have never seen each other before and expecting them to laugh and talk and at the same time enjoy their meal—well, this may be too much to ask.
🎈要求太过分，要求太高，等等be too much to ask
Would it be too much to ask you to keep your hands off my husband?
Rather than leave it to chance, the host tries to facilitate these interactions between guests. Still, if he pleases this one, he may slight the other; and finding a topic of interest to all is also a formidable task. Therefore, guests should be judged by class. Dragons, so to speak, should not be mixed with fish.
🎈任其发展，听天由命，顺其自然 leave it to chance
🎈slight v. 侮慢，冷落，轻视
formidable adj. 可怕的，令人敬畏的，难对付的
棘手的任务 a formidable task
🎈像，仿佛，可谓是，可以说是so to speak =as it were
…yet the panorama of faces and behaviors I now observed were, so to speak, a wonderful living book, one that I could turn the pages on endlessly.
As for the number of guests to invite, it all depends on the utensils available. Of course it would be good if you could invite all the guests you feel obliged to invite, but that’s asking too much. Even the biggest round table can seat no more than thirteen or fourteen medium-sized guests.
🎈utensils available中的available一词大体上表示“可以满足他人在某一场合的例行需要”。例如打电话找某人，找得到就是available；要拜访某经理，秘书说他忙或者外出了，就是not available；市场上某种货物脱销，也是not available。
🎈utensil n. （家庭）用具，器皿，家什
a tool that is used in the house
Oddly enough, few guests come alone; instead they bring their spouses. That is, invite one and you will get two. So a table is often half a table.
On one occasion, a host sent out as many invitations as he could, hoping some of his friends would be kind enough to come. Who would have thought that everyone would agree to come, and an especially close friend even brought his seven-year-old! Hurriedly, the host tried to squeeze in an extra chair, but the man politely declined and said, “Let the child sit on my lap!”
🎈谁能想到……？Who would have thought that…?
would have been通常用在虚拟语态中，表示将会做与过去事实相反的动作。
🎈squeeze in an extra chair指“缩短每个座位之间的距离，腾出空间塞把椅子进去”。
The guests jammed themselves close together, but with several stout, middle-aged men in their midst, the table was so tightly packed that the host had to pass food overhead and pour wine by their ears. After all were seated, the host stood behind, respectfully serving the guests.
🎈jam v. 塞入，塞进，挤进
to put sb/sth into a small space where there is very little room to move
We were jammed together like sardines in a can.
🎈挤满了be packed with
The attackers used a car packed with explosives.
Deciding on the menu is by no means easy. Every family can cook special delicacies, but few will exploit their fortes on these occasions. Often, it seems as if the menu was planned for a restaurant banquet.
🎈决不，一点也不by no means
🎈forte n. 专长，特长
a thing that sb does particularly well
Languages were never my forte.
If there is a cook in the home, it is a simple matter for the hostess to make her wishes known, and she does not have to concern herself with the food. If no cook is employed, then the hostess will find herself confined to the kitchen, chopping and cooking.
🎈关心、关注某事concern oneself with sth
In comparison, I found more freedom in my apartment than in the hotel, for I had my own things there, and didn’t have to concern myself with the waiter.
As usual, many hosts can talk of their prowess in the kitchen, but seldom are they up to the simplest of tasks like cutting onions and garlic. So, when drawing up the menu, the host should first of all assess his own cooking skills, because consulting a cookbook by the kitchen range is probably of no avail should a crisis arise.
🎈prowess n.[U] great skill at doing sth
🎈 up to sth
1) （体力或智力上）能胜任 [up to (doing) sth]
I don’t feel up to going to work today.
2）与 … 一样高（或好）
Her latest book isn’t up to her usual standard.
3）直到；不多于；不迟于 [=up until sth]
Up to now he’s been very quiet.
I can take up to four people (= but no more than four) in my car.
What’ve you been up to?
I’m sure he’s up to no good (= doing sth bad).
🎈炉灶 a range/a kitchen range
A few close friends crowd around the kitchen range, chatting gaily, feeling warm and cozy.
🎈… should a crisis arise=if a crisis should arise
A menu of four cold starters, four hot dishes, four side orders, and two dim sums —it seems that no dish can be taken off the list. If the meat and fish, delicacies from both land and sea, cannot make the guests belch continually afterwards, they can’t have eaten their fill.
🎈(一餐中的)第一道菜，开胃小吃starter [In American English, appetizer is used]
🎈belch v.打嗝to let air come up noisily from your stomach and out through your mouth
🎈吃饱 eat one’s fill
When each hedgehog had eaten his fill of the melons, beans and eggplants, the watchman seemed all the more helpless.
So the guiding principle of planning a menu must be to let the guests gorge themselves until their mouths drip with lard. Rather than simply stuffing themselves, what the guests hope for is nothing short of a special treat!
🎈指导原则 the guiding principle
🎈1）贪婪地吃；狼吞虎咽gorge oneself on sth
I could spend each day gorging on chocolate.
I could stuff myself with ten chocolate bars and half an hour later eat a big meal.
3）吃撑了 be stuffed
🎈可以说是、无异于、近乎 little/nothing short of sth.
The course of history is never smooth. It is sometimes beset with difficulties and obstacles and nothing short of a heroic spirit can help surmount them.
Once, a host entertained his guests with boiled dumplings stuffed with pork and spinach. After taking the first bite, one of the guests called out, “Oh! How come the stuffing is all greens? You see?” Most guests want only fatty meats and strong liquors, and don’t give a hoot about their health.
How come the door’s locked?
How come you know my name?
🎈greens n. 绿叶菜，青菜
You can refer to the cooked leaves of vegetables such as spinach or cabbage as greens.
don’t give a hoot/don’t care two hoots about sth
Alan doesn’t care two hoots about Irish politics.
When the auspicious day approaches, the hostess must go through the market back and forth to select the best quality fare at the lowest price. With two baskets of food to struggle with, she will have to stop several times before getting home, dripping with sweat.
🎈fare n. (饭店或咖啡店的)餐点，饮食，饭菜
The fare has much improved since Hugh has taken charge of the kitchen.
🎈浸满（某种液体）be soaked / dripping / dr
enched with …
大汗淋漓be ~ with sweat
After two hectic days of steeping, washing, peeling, and cutting, the day of reckoning arrives and the ugly bride must face the music. Since the guests accepted our invitation, they should at least be punctual in their arrivals, but no, punctuality is not in our tradition!
🎈 hectic adj. 忙碌的，繁忙的
very busy; full of activity
to lead a hectic life生活十分忙碌
a hectic schedule安排很满的日程表
🎈算总账的日子the day of reckoning
If a guest arrived on time, he might appear like a starving ghost with a head the size of a barrel and a throat as thin as a straw. It is our style to keep the host helplessly worried and apprehensive despite repeated urging on the part of the host while we leisurely take our time and arrive fashionably late—nothing short of this can be called manners of good breeding.
🎈干着急 helplessly worried and apprehensive
apprehensive adj. 忧虑的，担心的，疑惧的，恐惧的
worried or frightened that sth unpleasant may happen
🎈由某人作出的on the part of sb. / on sb.’s part
It was a mistake on my part.
对某人而言for one’s part
部分地，某种程度上in part = partly= to some degree
🎈从容不迫，不着急 take one’s time
🎈大家风范manners of good breeding
有学问品行的人 men of breeding
Naturally, some particularly impatient friends insist on arriving ahead of the appointed time—an occurrence that often catches the host and hostess unawares and throws them into utter confusion.
🎈提前、预先ahead of time
约定的时间the appointed time
🎈使某人措手不及 catch/take sb unawares
After the arrival, the guests display their differing personalities. Some, upon entering the house, will choose a good seat, lift their feet onto a stool, and make themselves totally at home. Others, after a brief introduction, will hurry into the kitchen to help. Of course the apron-clad hostess will stick out her greasy hands to rebuff their offer.
a seat with legs but no support for your arms or back
Her offer of help was met with a sharp rebuff.
By the time all the guests have arrived, everyone will find their stomach rumbling.
🎈雷声轰鸣 thunder rumbling
腹中雷鸣 stomachs rumbling (with hunger)
Before they sit down at the table, guests invariably go through the ritual of declining and yielding. Unless the host has properly arranged the plates with guests’ names and titles in advance, he will have a hard time assigning his seating plan.
🎈ritual n. 习惯，老规矩
something that is done regularly and always in the same way
Cocktails at the Plaza was a nightly ritual of their sophisticated world.
As a rule, toasting is the host’s duty, but some eager beaver always seems to take this task upon himself and constantly fills every glass he sees to the brim.
🎈干活特别卖力的人，对工作极有热忱的人 eager beaver
🎈承担，接受take on/upon sth
No other organization was able or willing to take on the job.
Those who do not drink must go through the motions with a glass of soda water, while those who do drink sip carefully and then wrinkle up their noses.
I always start the day by going through my email.
Let’s go through the arguments again.
Certain formalities have to be gone through before you can emigrate.
He’s amazingly cheerful considering all he’s had to go through.
The boys went through two whole loaves of bread.
Then, a big plate of steaming hot food, which appears to be custard of shark’s fin or something similar, is served. One guest will take it upon himself to poke down the coriander sprinkled on the surface as if cutting poisonous grass, while another will fish it up from the bottom and hide it in his mouth. After each guest takes a spoonful, the floral pattern on the bottom of the bowl is soon visible.
🎈coriander n. 芫荽，香菜
🎈花纹the floral pattern
②花的made of flowers
a floral dress有花卉图案的连衣裙
a floral arrangement/display插花，花展
Some guests insist that seafood should be eaten with vinegar and request it loudly, but when it finally arrives the seafood has already disappeared. Dishes are served one after another, and each time a dish appears on the table the guests will shout “Abundance! Abundance!”, but then turn their heads to their bowls, unwilling to be left behind.
a large quantity that is more than enough
大量的…… an abundance of
🎈落后，落伍 be left behind
He’s behind the rest of the class in reading.
As a rule, the host replies modestly, “This is just a token of our respect for you; it’s only a plain home meal.” Some outspoken guest may exclaim, “What a simple home meal! I hope we are not eating you out of house and home.” In response, the host can only snigger.
🎈 token n. （感觉、事实、事件等的）象征，标志，表示，信物
something that is a symbol of a feeling, a fact, an event, etc.
Please accept this small gift as a token of our gratitude.
🎈把某人吃得倾家荡产 eat sb out of house and home
As the feast comes to a close, one guest may leave ahead of the others as he has a few more social engagements on his plate for this evening.
🎈接近尾声 draw/come to a close/an end
As winter was drawing to an end and spring coming nearer, the sun became so warm that people felt like taking off their cotton-padded jackets.
At this time, the hostess strolls in, her face aglow from the hectic work and a few beads of sweat standing on her forehead. The guests lift their empty glasses to toast her in recognition of her efforts in the kitchen. She takes the departed guest’s place at the table and hastily grasps for the leftovers.
🎈her face aglow from the hectic work and a few beads of sweat standing on her forehead是独立主格结构，aglow from中的from引出原因。
aglow adj. 红光满面的，面色发红的
glowing especially with warmth or excitement
🎈对（某人的功劳或成就）表示认可in recognition of…
为了/以感谢…in return / reward for …或in appreciation of …
为了纪念某人；向某人表示敬意in honor of …[可为生者或逝者]
追思/悼念某人in memory of …
At the close of the feast as the tea and fruits arrive, the guests lean back in their chairs and pick their teeth. It is high time they returned home and gave the host some peace and quiet, but everybody seems to be in high spirits. They chat with much gusto, exchanging gossip and shooting the bull repeatedly. No one seems willing to be the first to say goodbye, lest he spoil the fun of the others.
🎈剔牙 pick teeth
It’s high time+…
It’s high time this leakage of information was put a stop to.
🎈兴高采烈，情绪高涨 in high spirits
If you do something with gusto, you do it with energetic and enthusiastic enjoyment.
🎈聊天，闲聊 shoot the breeze/bull
🎈spoil v. 破坏，搞坏，糟蹋，毁掉
to change sth good into sth bad, unpleasant, useless, etc
扫兴；破坏气氛 spoil the mood
影响某人食欲 spoil one’s appetite
Don’t let him spoil your evening.
The tall buildings have spoiled the view.
Only when the yawning hostess forgets to cover her mouth will a guest take the hint and propose to break up the party.
Only when the war was over in 1918 was he able to get back to work．
Only in this way can you learn English well．
Only after a bitter struggle was the aim achieved．
Only the teachers are allowed to use the room．（不倒装）
Only five men were hurt in the accident．（不倒装）
🎈领会某人暗示 take the/a hint
I thought they’d never go — some people just can’t take a hint.
Since all feasts must eventually have an end, the others are left with no recourse but to join him at the door.
🎈recourse n. 依靠，依赖
Your only recourse is legal action.
She made a complete recovery without recourse to surgery.
But do not think that with the guests all gone, the party can be promptly wrapped up! The floor is littered with melon seed shells and cigarette ashes, the table is scattered with plates and dishes, the kitchen is piled high with bowls and pots—and all sit waiting for the poor hostess to wash.
🎈圆满完成，圆满结束(工作、协议等) wrap up sth
NATO defense ministers wrap up their meeting in Brussels today.
🎈……乱扔得到处都是 be littered with sth
The floor was littered with papers.
🎈……堆得老高be piled high with…
Yesterday morning, while wandering about alone in a pine forest, I amused myself by piling up a small sandhill under an old pine tree.
用某物招待某人entertained sb with sth
（对……）有害，不利 do harm (to…)
有时；偶尔；时常every now and then/again
邀请某人到家中 invite sb over/round/around
结账 settle account
（就……）达成共识 reach consensus /reach a consensus (about/on sth)
主宾，贵宾guest of honor
自命不凡的人，爱摆架子的人 a stuffed shirt
讨好;奉承;拍…的马屁 curry favor with…
位置不当；不得体，不适当 out of place
要求太过分，要求太高，等等be too much to ask
任其发展，听天由命，顺其自然 leave it to chance
像，仿佛，可谓是，可以说是so to speak =as it were
谁能想到……？Who would have thought that…?
挤满了be packed with
决不；一点也不by no means
（体力或智力上）能胜任 up to (doing) sth
炉灶 a range/a kitchen range
(一餐中的)第一道菜，开胃小吃starter [In American English, appetizer is used]
吃饱 eat one’s fill
指导原则 the guiding principle
贪婪地吃；狼吞虎咽gorge oneself on sth
可以说是、无异于、近乎 little/nothing short of sth.
毫不在乎;根本不在意 don’t give a hoot/don’t care two hoots about sth
浸满（某种液体）be soaked / dripping / drenched with …
干着急 helplessly worried and apprehensive
由某人作出的on the part of sb. / on sb.’s part
从容不迫，不着急 take one’s time
大家风范manners of good breeding
提前、预先ahead of time
约定的时间the appointed time
使某人措手不及 catch/take sb unawares
干活特别卖力的人；对工作极有热忱的人 eager beaver
承担，接受take on/upon sth
花纹the floral pattern
落后，落伍 be left behind
把某人吃得倾家荡产 eat sb out of house and home
接近尾声 draw/come to a close/an end
对（某人的功劳或成就）表示认可in recognition of…
剔牙 pick teeth
是该做某事的时候了。It’s high time+…
兴高采烈，情绪高涨 in high spirits
聊天；闲聊 shoot the breeze/bull
领会某人暗示 take the/a hint
圆满完成，圆满结束(工作、协议等) wrap up sth
……乱扔得到处都是 be littered with sth
……堆得老高be piled high with…