BBC英语六分钟 第240期:超级富豪


This is a download from BBC Learning English. To find out more, visit our website. 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English. com.

本文来自BBC Learning English。如需获得更多内容请访问我们的网站。BBC Learning English. com 英语六分钟节目。

Neil: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English – the programme where we bring you an interesting topic and six items of vocabulary. I'm Neil.


Catherine: And I'm Catherine. Today we're taking a look into the lives of the super rich– and we're going to look at one of their favourite pastimes.


Neil: The super rich are people with over $30 million US dollars of assets.


Catherine: Assets are things we can own and sell – like property, boats and private planes.


Neil: Expensive toys. First things first, let's do our question, Catherine. In which country is the percentage of super rich expected to grow fastest over the next 10 years? Is it a) China b) Brazil c) Vietnam?

昂贵的玩具。先说重要的,我们来看看今天的问题。在未来十年中,哪个国家的超级富豪比例增长最快?a)中国, b)巴西, c) 越南?

Catherine: I'm going to go for Vietnam. I think, that's an up and coming country and I think there is going to be a lot of growth in wealth in the future.


Neil: Ok, well we'll find out if you are right or wrong later. The number of super rich are expected to increase by 43% over the next decade.


Catherine: Now, this doesn't mean income is rising at the same speed for everyone. You might remember a report last year which said the world's richest 62 individuals owned as much as the poorest 50% of people in the whole world.


Neil: So, my question is – what on earth do people with so much money spend it on?


Catherine: One academic in the UK has been researching just that. And her answer is …, Neil?


Neil: Yachts! A yacht – a luxury boat used for pleasure. The ultimate status symbol – that is, an item which allows you to show off your wealth and position in society.


Catherine: Let's listen to Emma Spence from Cardiff University in the UK. What's so unusual about yachts?


If you have an exclusive wine collection or art collection or even the purchase of a business jet– these are investable assets – something that you can retain value on or accrue value on. A business jet, a private jet, can cut costs – and make businesses more convenient by running faster, more comfortably than commercial airlines. So these purchases, they make good, sound business sense. Whereas a superyacht is essentially a black hole.

如果你有独家的藏酒或艺术收藏品,甚至是购买了一架商务机,这些都是可供投资的资产,可以保值或增值。商务机、私家飞机可以精简开支,比商业机更快、更舒适、更便于出差。所以这些东西具有商业意义 。然而超级游艇实际上是个黑洞。

Neil: Before we get to the yacht, Emma talked about certain assets like planes and wine that made business sense.


Catherine: Now, to make sense – is a phrase you'll be familiar with. So, if we say something makes business sense, it means it's good for business. But yachts are different.

make sense这个短语你会很熟悉。如果我们说某物具有商业意义,那就是说它对商业有利。但游艇不同。

Neil: Yachts, and especially what she calls superyachts, actually lose money. So much so, she calls a superyacht a black hole of wealth.


Catherine: A black hole, in scientific terms, is a place where gravity is so strong that nothing can escape – not even light. So, in business terms, a black hole eats all your money!


Neil: It's also used conversationally to mean a place where things go missing.


Catherine: These superyachts are big. The world's longest is 180m in length. And they require a professional crew. Which is how Emma began her study – she used to work on the yachts.


Neil: She's now spent six years studying the world of superyachts and the super rich.


Catherine: So, what else did she learn?


Neil: She says that in the world of the super rich – the size of your yacht shows your place in the pecking order.


Catherine: The pecking order means the social system from most powerful to least powerful.

pecking order(社会等级)是指从最有权势到最没权势的社会体系。

Neil: If you're higher up in the yachting pecking order, you get the best place in the harbour. Which is very important to yacht owners, apparently.


Catherine: Apparently, so. It's all about seeing and being seen. You could actually say that yachts are the ultimate form of conspicuous consumption. Now that's another great term – conspicuous means visible or noticeable and consumption means spending. So, the phrase conspicuous consumption refers to the kind of buying you do so that other people notice your money.


Neil: Before we sail off into the sunset Catherine, how about we answer today's question.


Catherine: I said that Vietnam is the country in which the percentage of super rich is expected to grow fastest over the next 10 years.


Neil: Well, I'm very pleased to say that you were right. It was in fact Vietnam– according to the same report by Knight Frank – the population of ultra wealthy is expected to grow by a staggering 170% in the next decade.


Catherine: Now, how about we have another look at the wealth of vocabulary in this programme?


Neil: Very good. We started with assets – here it means things we can buy or sell. What are your assets?


Catherine: Oh, you know, my diamond rings, my bike, my laptop. I'm not like you though Neil, I don't live in an expensive mansion – that would be a real status symbol!


Neil: If only that were true, but it's a good example. A status symbol is a possession that shows off our wealth and our place in society.


Catherine: Yes, and we had the phrase to make business sense – in other words to be good for business. We could also say that a particular policy makes economic sense.

是的。我们还提到一个短语,make business sense,换句话说就是对商业有利。我们也可以说某项政策有益于经济发展。

Neil: Or I could say investing wisely makes financial sense. Not like yachts which are expensive to buy and run. In fact, they're a black hole for our money.


Catherine: Now, did you know our next phrase, pecking order, actually comes from chicken behaviour?

你知道我们下一个短语——pecking order实际上是源于鸡的行为吗?

Neil: And finally, the phrase conspicuous consumption. For example, you could say that dining at the finest restaurants wearing expensive clothes is conspicuous consumption.


Catherine: And to clear up two similar phrases: a status symbol refers to the object itself, like a luxury car; whereas conspicuous consumption refers to the act of spending money on things like expensive cars but you're spending money so that other people notice.


Neil: Do check us out on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

欢迎大家在Facebook、Twitter、Instagram 和YouTube上收听我们的节目。

Both: Bye!


6 Minute English from the BBC.


来自:VOA英语网 文章地址: