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Joe's Cafe

Personal blog of EnglishClub founder Josef Essberger - see Menu

Good book

Tell us about a book you are reading (or have read). What is its title? Who wrote it? What is it about? Why do you like it?

Around the World in 80 Days

If you had 80 days to travel around the world, where would you like to go? Where would you start? Tell us about the places you’d want to visit, how you would travel and who you would like to meet.


We all like to laugh at some time. And we all enjoy a good joke. Tell us a joke that makes you laugh.

New Year’s Resolution

At New Year (1st January) many people resolve or decide to do something or not do something. That is called a “New Year’s Resolution”. For example, they might resolve to do more exercise, or to stop smoking, or to work harder. What is your New Year’s Resolution be for 2008? And why?

My Favourite Food

Leave a comment to describe your favourite food. When do you eat it? Why do you like it?

Affect or effect?

These two words are often confused. They both have several meanings, but today we will look at their basic meaning of change.

Affect is a verb, basically meaning: cause to change; make a difference to

  • The cold weather affected my health.
  • If you don’t study it will affect your exam results badly.
  • How you dress affects the way people think of you.

Effect is a noun, meaning: a change that is the result of something else

  • The cold weather had an effect on my health.
  • Hard drugs can have deadly effects.
  • Her love letters had no effect on him.

As mentioned above, both words can have other meanings as well, and effect can also be a verb (with a different meaning). Just remember that in the sense of “change” as shown above the noun is effect and the verb is affect.

You already speak English

Here are some words we use in English that are also “international words” – you see and hear them almost everywhere. So even if you are starting to learn English, you already speak it!

Like many words in English, some of these words have been “borrowed” from other languages.



telephone, phone












Quiz: Collective Nouns

Can you put each of these collective nouns in the right sentence below? You must use each noun once only.

pack | herd | fleet | suite | audience | crowd

1. The farmer moved his __________ of cows to higher ground to avoid the flood.

2. The President and his staff had a __________ of rooms on the top floor.

3. After the concert the __________ clapped loudly.

4. It was difficult to move because there were so many people in the __________.

5. Which navy has the biggest __________ in the world?

6. The casino uses a new __________ of cards for each game.

See Comments for answers.

The Sick Rose

O Rose, thou art sick!

The invisible worm,

That flies in the night,

In the howling storm,

Has found out thy bed

Of crimson joy;

And his dark secret love

Does thy life destroy.

William Blake 1757-1827

So the question is: What is “the invisible worm that flies in the night”?

Advice or advise?

Advice is a noun:

  • He did not accept my advice.

Advise is a verb:

  • The doctor advised her to stop work.