Now, the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.

    Today we explain some expressions about birds. For example, if something is for the birds, it is worthless or not very interesting. Someone who eats like a bird eats very little. And a birds-eye view is a general look at an area from above.
    今天,我们讲述一些关于禽类的词汇。例如,如果说某事某物for the birds,指的是它毫无价值或不是很有趣。说某人eats like a bird(俗语:吃鸟食)指他吃得很少。birds-eye view(即鸟瞰)是指从高处观察一个区域。

    Did you know that if you tell a young person about the birds and the bees you are explaining about sex and birth?? Have you ever observed that birds of a feather flock together? In other words, people who are similar become friends or do things together. Here is some good advice: a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. This means you should not risk losing something you have by trying to get more of something you do not have.
    你知道吗,如果你和年轻人谈及the birds and the bees,意思是谈论性和繁殖。你是否注意到birds of a feather flock together(物以类聚,人以群分)?换句话说,换句话说,性格相似的人总是会成为朋友或者在一起工作。以下是一些好建议:a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush(两鸟在林,不如一鸟在手)这句话的意思是不要冒险拿你已经有的东西去换取那些看上去多一些但你未必能得到的东西。

    Sometimes I can do two things by performing only one action. This is called killing two birds with one stone. But I would never really kill any birds. I love all kinds of animals. This is a real feather in my cap. It is something to be proud of.
    有时,我可以一举两得,也就是所谓的一石二鸟。但我绝不会真的杀害任何鸟类,我爱所有动物。这是a real feather in my cap,也就是说这是值得自豪的。

    Most of the people I work with are early birds. They believe that the early bird catches the worm. They think that a person who gets up early in the morning for work has the best chance of success. Everyone in my office works hard, but some people have had their wings clipped. Their jobs have been limited. This is because the office is organized by pecking order. People with more years and experience are given more responsibility.
    和我一起工作的许多人都喜欢早起。他们相信the early bird catches the worm(早起的鸟儿有虫吃)。也就是说,他们认为,一大早起床开始工作,会获得更好的成功机会。我办公室的每个人工作都很努力。但有些人被束缚手脚,就是说他们的工作受到限制。这是因为办公室论资排辈,工作时间长经验更丰富的人被赋予更多责任。

    Some bird expressions are about crows, chickens and ducks. For example, when I am driving, I always travel as the crow flies. I go the most direct way. Anyone who eats crow has to admit a mistake or defeat.

    Now let's talk about my sister. She is not very young. She is no spring chicken. She will work any job for chicken feed -- a small amount of money. She is easily frightened. For example, she is too chicken-livered to walk down a dark street alone at night. Often she will chicken out – she will not go out alone at night.
    现在让我们来谈谈我的妹妹。她不是很年轻,也就是她不是spring chicken。为了一点小钱(chicken feed),她什么工作都做。她很容易受惊。例如,她胆小(chicken-livered)到夜里不敢在漆黑的街上走。她经常会退缩(chicken out)--在夜里不会单独出去。

    My sister was an ugly duckling. She looked strange when she was a child, but she grew up to be a beautiful woman. Sometimes she thinks too much about having something in the future before she really has it. She counts her chickens before they are hatched. Sometimes her chickens come home to roost. That means her actions or words cause trouble for her. However, my sister does not worry about what people say about her. Criticism falls off her like water off a duck's back.

    Politicians are sometimes considered lame ducks after losing an election. They have little time left in office and not much power. Congress holds a lame duck session after an election. Important laws are not passed during this period.