Podcast

Episode 23 • Family

23b

Be put up for adoption

Long-lost relative

Bring up

Follow in someone's footsteps

Be in (one's) blood

Story

Hello Rick, Mike over here, reporting from Norway, where the impossible just happened!

The world record for longest ski jump now belongs to Jonathan McGill, who just performed a jump of over 840 feet. That’s right, we’re talking about the son of Sandy and Jack McGill, the two professional skiers who died in the big avalanche of ‘92. Little John was put up for adoption and went to live with a long-lost relative from Colorado. Despite being brought up in a quiet little town, as soon as he was old enough, he decided to follow in his parents’ footsteps. After the jump he simply said: “I guess it’s in my blood!”

Back to you, Rick!

Questions

Okay, we're back. It was really hard to read that story because I was pinching my nose the whole time to change my voice and it couldn't really read, but I think it went well. Okay, let's begin with expression number one.

Be put up for adoption

'Little John was put up for adoption.'

• When is a baby put up for adoption? Before or after finding new parents?

A baby is put up for adoption before finding new parents because you want to find parents for this child. It can be before they're born or after they're born.

• What could be the reasons for putting up a child for adoption?

Well, there's various reasons. It could be maybe just like in the story, the parents have died, both parents have died, they got nobody else-- The child has nobody else that they can go live with and so, they are put up for adoption. Or maybe sometimes some parents are just very young, they don't feel like they could do a good job as parents, so they decide to put up their baby up for adoption. Maybe there's bad financial situations or maybe the parents have committed a crime and they're both in jail. Whatever the reason may be, some kids are put up for adoption.

• Do you know somebody who was put up for adoption?

I don't think I know anybody who's been put up for adoption. Then again, it's something that maybe some people don't share, so there's really no way of knowing in the end.

Long-lost relative

'... and went to live with a long-lost relative.'

• Is a long-lost relative someone you saw recently or a long time ago?

Well, here the expression itself kind of helps you, long lost relative. That's someone that you saw a long time ago. You haven't lost them. It's not like your keys in the morning when you have to leave. Oh, my gosh, where's my uncle? I don't see him. No, that just means you haven't seen them in a very long time.

• Can you think of any long-lost relatives of yours?

I have a lot. I have a whole side of family living in Sicily in Italy and I haven't seen them in forever. I think I have, I don't know dozens and dozens of long lost relatives.

Bring up

'Despite being brought up in a quiet little town...'

• Who normally brings up a child?

Normally, the person who brings up the child is the parents, but depending on your situation, you may be brought up by someone else. We've already discussed it. It's the same as with the verb raise that we talked about in the previous episode in Episode 22. You can be brought up by your parents, by sometimes an older sister or an older brother.

• Can you bring up an adult?

No, you only bring up a child. To bring up someone means to help them grow and develop. Both by supporting them financially as well as emotionally.

• Does bringing up only involve material stuff or also values?

When you're talking about bringing up, it usually refer to the whole package. Everything that's needed to help the child grow, both material stuff but also values.

• Where were you brought up? In which country or which city?

I was brought up in Italy in the north of Italy, specifically in Milan.

Follow in someone’s footsteps

'He decided to follow in his parents’ footsteps.'

• If you follow in your parents‘ footsteps, for example, do you emulate your parents or do something different?

Following in someone's footsteps, in this case, your parents' footsteps. That means that you live life or do something that your parents have done before. It's very used when you're talking about the career of someone. Let's say that your parents were lawyers. I've decided to follow in my parents footsteps and become a lawyer myself.

• Who ‘follows in someone’s footsteps‘? Younger family members or older family members?

We're only talking about younger people. If you're younger, you can follow in someone's footsteps because that person has already done the work. You're just copying them and going through the same things they did. Again, it's very, very used with the jobs.

• Are you following in your parents’ footsteps?

I guess I am. My mom was a teacher, she's retired now, but I have become a teacher myself. It wasn't my idea. I didn't do it-- When I first did it, I was like, 'Oh, I'm going to follow my mother's footsteps." It just sort of happened but I guess yes, I realized that I was falling in my mom's footsteps.

Be in one’s blood

'It’s in my blood!'

• If a skill or interest is in your blood, do you share it with someone else? With whom?

Yes, if something is in your blood, a skill, an ability, or something that you like, that means that you share it with someone in your family, usually many people in your family.

• Is the expression ‘It’s in my blood’ used to describe something that feels natural or forced?

If it's in your blood, it means it feels natural. You don't have to force it. Imagine you have a family of musicians. Your mom plays the violin, your dad plays the piano and you go to high school and you start playing the trumpet. It just comes very very natural to you. That's because it's in your blood. It's out literally in your blood. I don't even really know if a talent can be passed up through genetics. Maybe yes, maybe no, I don't know enough about science but that's the expression. You know what it means, I have the same skill that my family, the rest of my family has.

• Is there something that you believe is your blood?

I think something that comes, I don't think so actually. Maybe I've been adopted. Who knows? No, but I think I'm really good at languages. I am an okay singer but I don't know anybody in my family who's good at either of these things. so I don't know. I guess maybe teaching is in my blood, again, because my mom was a teacher but I can't think of anything else honestly.

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