Do the Preparation task first. Then listen to the audio. Next go to each Task and do the activity. If you need help, you can read the Transcript at any time.
Harry: So how are things going, mate?
Johnny: Good. Things are good. I’m really enjoying my job ... lots of work, but I’ll be rich in three years!
Harry: You work all the time. I don’t know how you manage it. You should take a break some time, come and play football with me!
Johnny: Too busy, mate, too busy. Venture capital – it’s so exciting right now. All the opportunities opening up in China. And I’m here to make the most of it! You should think about changing your job, Harry – get a piece of the action!
Harry: You’re right ... I'm always thinking about changing jobs ... but I only know about computers, nothing else.
Johnny: There are lots of computer experts around. You need to specialise!
Harry: Perhaps you’re right, but I really like my job.
Johnny: Is the money good?
Harry: Not bad ...
Johnny: But not good?
Harry: Well, I could find a job that pays more, but I would enjoy it less...
Johnny: You could come and work for our company!
Harry: Hmmm ... is that an offer?
Johnny: Yes ... I’m serious! Listen, I’ll have a word with the human resources people tomorrow. I know there are some vacancies at the moment in the IT team ... you’d easily get it. Have to go now, see you soon.
Harry: Yeah, yeah. Cheers, mate! See you soon!
Olivia: Hi there! You on your own?
Harry: Yeah, Johnny’s just gone off to work ...
Olivia: As always. Never stops, that boy.
Harry: Talking of which, what are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be in the shop?
Olivia: I’m just taking a break. I’m fed up of standing in that shop selling shoes all day, to tell you the truth.
Harry: They’re very nice shoes, though.
Olivia: All hand made, of course. But, like I say, I don’t want to spend the rest of my life running that shop.
Harry: You could sell your shoes on the web.
Olivia: That’s right! I’ve thought about that already ...
Harry: Have you got anybody to set up a website for you?
Olivia: No … but I did think ... I was wondering ... I don’t suppose ....
Olivia: ... that you’d be interested?
Harry: Me? Do your website for you?
Olivia: Well, yeah ... I’d like someone I know ... someone I can trust ...
Harry: Well, I guess I could do it, sure ... I’ll have to think ...
Olivia: Hi Fadi! How are you doing? Do you know my friend Harry?
Fadi: No ... nice to meet you!
Harry: Yeah ... you too ... cheers.
Olivia: Fadi works in the restaurant business, don’t you Fadi?
Fadi: Well, sort of, not exactly ... we supply food to lots of restaurants, but ... I tell you ... it’s a nightmare at the moment ...
Olivia: Oh dear. What’s the problem?
Fadi: Well, there’s just too much work really ... can’t keep up. It’s my dad’s business, but he’s getting old now. My uncle works with us too, but he’s not really interested, so it’s all up to me ... I can’t keep track of what’s coming in and going out ...
Harry: Sounds like you need a better stock management system!
Fadi: Yeah! That’s exactly what I was thinking – how did you know that?
Harry: That’s my job, innit? I set up computerised stock management systems, all kinds of business IT solutions ...
Fadi: Wow! That’s brilliant! Listen ... seriously now ... would you be interested in some work?
Harry: Erm ... well ... yeah! That’s three job offers I've had in the last five minutes! What should I do?
'Mate' is a very common term, especially in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, but it is not used in the US. It is informal which might be why you have not seen it in a written text before. We use it in informal writing like emails and text messages to friends, however, and not just in spoken language.
The LearnEnglish Team
Yes, that's right: 'how are things going?' is an informal way of asking someone how they are. It's is very commonly used in informal situations.
All the best
The LearnEnglish Team