英语短文阅读-文化篇
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文化

美国家庭是怎样的?

American family

In the United States, most families have two or three children, and there are also even larger families.

Certainly, children live together with their parents. But when the children have families, they will move out and have their own houses. Parents usually keep in touch with their grown children and take great interest in their grandchildren. On holidays, members of the larger family - grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins - often have meals together.

Both Mother and Father can have a voice in the family, but not all families are run this way. Many families still live by the old rule that Father's word is law.

Now, some mothers do not stay at home any longer. They also go out to work. Today, about 10 million American mothers with children under eighteen have jobs. In some families, mothers have to work because the father can neither find jobs nor make enough money. In other families, the mother may work to make more money so other family can enjoy a better living. Many working mothers have to look for a cleaning woman one day or more days a week to help with housework and look after the children.

美国的房车文化

The van culture in the US

Americans with small families own a small car or a larger one. If both parents are working, they usually have two cars. If the family is large, they will buy a van (住房汽车). A small car can hold four people. A large car can hold six people but it is very crowded (拥挤). A van can hold seven people easily. Americans call vans motor homes. A motor home is always used for holidays. So if a family has a van, the grandparents are often asked to go on a travel together.

Mr. Bush and his wife had a third child last year. So they have to sell the old car and buy a van. The sixth and seventh seat are used to put other things, since a family of five have to carry many suitcases (衣箱) when they travel. And when they arrive at their grandparents’ home, they can also carry their grandparents.

During the travel, they can live in their van for a few days or weeks. All the family members can enjoy a happier time when travelling together. Some people are even crazy about it. That is why vans have become very popular and there are many parks for motor homes.

冬季奥运会邮票。

Stamps of White Olympics

The Winter Olympics is also called the White Olympics. At this time, many colorful stamps are published to mark the great Games. The first stamps marking (标志) the opening came out on January 25th ,1932 in the United States for the 3rd White Olympics. From then on, publishing stamps during the White Olympics became a rule.

During the 4th Winter Olympic Games, a group of stamps were published in Germany in November l936. The five Olympics rings were drawn on the front of the sportswear. It was the first time that the rings appeared on the stamps of the White Olympics.

In the 1950s, the stamps of this kind became more colorful. When the White Olympics came, all countries in the event published stamps to mark those Games. China also published four stamps in February 1980 when the Chinese sportsmen began to take part in the White Olympics.

Japan is the only Asian country that has ever held the White Olympics. 14,500 million stamps were sold to raise (筹集) money for this sports meeting.

Different kinds of sports were drawn on these small stamps. People can enjoy the beauty of the wonderful movements of some sportsmen.

美国的DIY 文化

Do it yourself

When the Americans are at home, they usually enjoy spending their free time on all kinds of DIYs (do it yourself). Maybe this is a little different from our Chinese people. When we Chinese are at home , we would like to enjoy ourselves by watching TV or receiving our friends. But American people like spending their time in doing some kind of work on their own. They believe it to be helpful and interesting.

In their eyes, DIYs will not only help them to develop their brains but also save them much time. For a very little job, they will need to think twice before carrying it out well. This will certainly do much good to their brains and make them brighter and brighter.

Some Americans live far away from the service centre(服务中心). When something goes wrong , they will have to wait for a long time before finding the right service. In these cases, they would also love to manage by themselves. So in American, DIYs are very popular. There are a lot of newspapers on them, even books and websites

世界各地典型的茶文化。

The tea culture around the world

All around the world, people drink tea. But different cultures have their own ways of drinking tea.

In China, until the Ming dynasty (朝代), tea was made from tea bricks (茶砖) rather than leaves. People always drink tea when they are getting together. They drink it at any time of the day at homes or in the teahouses.

Another tea-drinking country is England. Britons drink over 120,000,000 cups of tea every day. In England, the late afternoon is “tea time”. Almost everyone has a cup of tea then. The English usually drink it with milk and sugar. They also eat cakes, cookies and a few sandwiches at tea time. Afternoon tea is sometimes called “low” tea, as it is served at lower coffee tables. Tea is also important in Japan. The Japanese have a special way of serving tea called tea ceremony(茶道). It has a long history and is full of meaning. The complete (完整的) ceremony lasts four hours. There is even a special room for it in Japanese homes.

汉堡的起源。

Hamburgers

It is known to all that the hamburger is Americans’ favorite food. Many people think the Americans made hamburgers first. However, the earliest burger ancestor (祖先) is invented by Mongol (蒙古) horsemen.

In the 13th century, the Mongolians from Central Asia moved into Russia and parts of Europe. They ate something like beef, goat or horse meat. But it was raw (生的) and they put it under the saddles of their horses. Soon the Russians started to eat raw meat, too. Germans from Hamburg (汉堡) and other northern cities learned to eat this food from the Russians. However, they added salt, pepper (胡椒), a raw egg, and then cooked it.

Between 1830 and 1900, thousands of Germans went to live in the United States. They took the hamburger with them. People called it hamburger steak (牛排). Later, people put a hamburger steak inside bread or a bun and ate it with their hands, like a sandwich (三明治). This was the first real hamburger—the hamburgers we eat today.

有趣的滑冰运动是谁发明的?---故事

Today, roller skating is easy and fun. But many years ago, it wasn't easy at all. Before 1750, people never tried skating on wheels. That changed because of a man named Joseph Merlin. Merlin was a man with many ideas and many dreams. People called him a dreamer.

One day Merlin was invited to an important party. He was very pleased and a little excited. As the day of the party came near, Merlin began to think. He wanted to find a way to make a wonderful entrance at the party. Merlin had an idea. He thought that he would attract a lot of attention if he could skate into the room.

Merlin tried different ways to make himself roll. Finally, he decided to put two wheels under each shoe. These were the first roller skate shoes. Merlin was very proud of them. He dreamed of arriving at the party and skating into the room while playing the violin. He was sure that everyone would be very surprised.

On the night of the party, Merlin rolled into the room, playing his violin. Everyone was really surprised to see him. There was just one problem. Merlin had no way to stop his roller skating. He rolled on. Then, with all eyes on him, Merlin hit into a huge mirror on the wall. The mirror broke into many pieces with a very loud noise.

Nobody forgot Merlin's wonderful entrance after that.

风靡世界的笑脸娃,给你一个大大的微笑。

The famous smiley face

Smiley faces are almost everywhere to be seen. Whenever you see them, you will feel a positive sense of power.

In 1963, artist Harvey Ross Ball in Massachusetts (马塞诸塞州), America, was asked to create a symbol (标志) for a local company. Ball finished the Smiley in less than 10 minutes. It was a simple smiley face: two oval eyes and a large semi-circular (半圆形的) mouth. Yellow was chosen as the background color, because it was the color of spring, the sun and an unclouded happiness.

The happy face was so popular. The company made thousands of buttons with the smile on them.In 1970, two brothers, Bernard and Murray Spain, came across the image in a button shop. They added the slogan (口号) “Have a Happy Day” to the smile and printed it on products. By the end of 1971, they had sold more than 50 million buttons and other products, like coffee mugs, stationery and tea trays.

The Smiley is the perfect symbol of feeling good. Today, it still remains in many design and cultural ideas. It tells us that no matter how small, any effort (努力) to make others happy is worthwhile (值得的).

篮球的起源。

Basketball

Football is a favorite sport for many people. But did you know when the first football game took place?

The first game was held125 years ago by a Canadian man named James Naismith. He was the inventor of basketball. In 1891, when teaching PE in a training school in America, Naismith was given two weeks to find an indoor activity in winter. Naismith created a game of skill, so students would not get too many injuries. The first game was played with a soccer ball and used two peach baskets as goals. He also came up with thirteen rules for the game. The idea was to throw the ball into the opposing (对手的) team’s peach basket.

The game soon became popular and spread to other states. The rules, of course, was improved . The old peach basket was replaced by iron rims with netting(网). Specialized (专门的)balls also began being made.

Naismith ’s sport was introduced in many nations. In 1936, basketball was brought forth at the Berlin (柏林) Olympics. Today it has grown to become one of the world's most popular sports. Around 300 million people play it worldwide.

A lonely café at mountain top

Are you getting fed up with the crowded and noisy coffee shops in cities? Perhaps you should get away for a while and head to Dagu Glacier (达古冰川) in Sichuan.

At an altitude (海拔) of 4,860 meters, a café there has a wonderful view of the mountains outside its windows. After pictures of the coffee shop were published online, it was described by Internet users as the "world's loneliest café".

The café may be quite remote. And in winter, the temperature outside drops to minus 20℃. But that hasn’t stopped travelers from making all the way up there. For many people, it looks like a quiet place for them to take a break from the busy life.

The café was completed and opened last October. There’s a cable car (缆车) to drop you to the top of the mountain. Inside the café, there is a heating system (供暖系统) to keep things warm and cozy. If you don't feel well at such a dizzy height, it also offers oxygen equipment (氧气设备). Anyone who travels to Dagu Glacier shouldn’t miss it.

culture bites: Dagu Glacier

达古冰川位于四川省阿坝州黑水县境内,千百年来一直不为世人所知晓,直到1992年才被日本科学家通过卫星发现。该冰川是中国第一彩色冰川,也是迄今发现的世界上海拔最低、面积最大、年纪最轻的冰川。海拔3800-5100米,山顶终年被雪覆盖,山峰错落有致,在阳光的照射下银光灿灿。最为壮观的三截冰川是1、2、3号冰川,形成年限达亿年。冰川之间有200多个冰川湖泊,澄澈美丽。