Now, the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.
Every week at this time, we tell about popular American words and expressions. Some of these are very old. Some are new. Together, they form the living speech of the American people.
Today we tell about the expression "down to earth." Down to earth means being open and honest. It is easy to deal with someone who is down to earth.
今天我们讲述down to earth（实在、朴实）这个短语，它的意思是坦率、诚实，和这种人打交道会很轻松。
A person who is down to earth is a pleasure to find. He or she accepts other people as equals. A down to earth person is the opposite of someone who acts important or proud.
Down to earth people could be important members of society. But they do not consider themselves to be better than others who are less important. They do not let their importance "go to their heads." Someone who lets something go to his head feels he is better than others. He has a "big head."
朴实者可能是社会精英，但他们并不认为自己比普通人更优越，不会被自己的重要地位冲昏了头脑（go to their heads）。那些被某些东西冲昏头脑的人会认为自己比他人优越，自高自大（big head）。
A person who is filled with his own importance and pride is said to have "his nose in the air." Often the person who has a big head and his nose in the air has no reason to feel better than others. He surely is the opposite of someone who is down to earth.
一个满脑子自大和傲慢的人被称为鼻孔朝天（his nose in the air，即自高自大）。通常这种自高自大鼻孔朝天的人并没有感觉比他人优越的理由，他的确和朴实者大相径庭。
Americans use another expression that is similar in some ways to down to earth. The expression is "both feet on the ground." Some one with both feet on the ground is a person with a good understanding of reality. She has what is called "common sense." She may have dreams. But she does not allow them to block her understanding of what is real.
美国人使用的另一个短语和down to earth在某些方面有相似之处。这个短语就是both feet on the ground（脚踏实地）。脚踏实地者对现实有着正确的理解。她具备所谓的“常识”。她可能会有梦想，但她不会让梦想妨碍自己对现实的理解。
The opposite kind of person is one who has his "head in the clouds." Someone with his head in the clouds is a person whose mind is not on what is happening in real life. Such a person may be called a "daydreamer."
与这种人相反的是不切实际者（head in the clouds）。不切实际者的思想不会集中在现实生活中发生的事情，这种人也可以被称为空想家（daydreamer）。
Sometimes a person with his head in the clouds can be brought back to reality. Sharp words from a teacher, for example, can usually get a daydreaming student to put "both feet on the ground."
有时候不切实际者也会被拉回现实中。例如，老师的痛斥通常能将做白日梦的学生拉回现实，让他脚踏实地（both feet on the ground）。
The person who is down to earth usually has both feet on the ground. But the opposite is not always true. Someone with both feet on the ground may not be as open and easy to deal with as someone who is down to earth.
When we have both our feet firmly on the ground, and when we are down to earth we do not have our noses in the air. We act honestly and openly to others. Our lives are like the ground below us – solid and strong.