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更新时间:2005/10/24
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It is humorous essay. But after reading it you will surely find that the author is most serious in writing it.

Is There Life on Earth?

    There was great excitement on the planet of Venus this week. For the first time Venusian scientists managed to land a satellite on the plant Earth, and is has been sending back signals as well as photographs ever since.
    The satellite was directed into an area know as Manhattan (named after the great Venusian astronomer Prof. Manhattan, who first discovered it with his telescope 20,000 light years ago).
    Because of excellent weather conditions and extremely strong signals, Venusian scientists were able to get valuable information as to the feasibility of a manned flying saucer landing on Earth. A press conference was held at the Venus Institute of Technology.
    "We have come to the conclusion, based on last week's satellite landing," Prof. Zog said, "that there is no life on Earth."
    "How do you know this?" the science reporter of the Venus Evening Star asked.
    "For one thing, Earth's surface in the area of Manhattan is composed of solid concrete and nothing can grow there. For another, the atmosphere is filled with carbon monoxide and other deadly gases and nobody could possibly breather this air and survive."
    "What does this mean as far as our flying sauce program is concerned?"
    "We shall have to take our own oxygen with us, which means a much heavier flying saucer than we originally planned."
    "Are there any other hazards that you discovered in your studier?"
"Take a look at this photo. You see this dark black cloud hovering over the surface of Earth? We call this the Consolidated Edison Belt. We don't know what it is made of, but it could give us a lot of trouble and we shall have to make further tests before we send a Venus Being there."
"Over here you will notice what seems to be a river, but the satellite findings indicate it is polluted and the water is unfit to drink. This means we shall have to carry our own water, which will add even greater weight to the saucer."
    "Sir, what are all those tiny black spots on the photographs?"
    "We're not certain. They seem to be metal particles that move along certain paths. They emit gases, make noise and keep crashing into each other. There are so many of these paths and so many metal particles that  it is impossible to land a flying saucer without its being smashed by one."
    "What are those stalagmite projections sticking up?"
    "They're some type of granite formations that give off light at night. Prof. Glom has named them skyscrapers since they seem to be scraping the skies."
"If all you say is true, won't this set back the flying saucer program several years?"
"Yes, but we shall proceed as soon as the Grubstart gives us the added funds."
    "Prof. Zog, why are we spending billions and billions of zilches to land a flying saucer on Earth when there is no life there?
    "Because if we Venusians can learn to breathe in an Earth atmosphere, then we can live anywhere."
   

NEW WORDS

    humorous
a.  funny; that makers people laugh 幽默的
    humor
n.
    essay
n.  散文,随笔
    excitement
n.  the state or quality of being excited 
    planet    
n.  large body in space that moves round a star esp. round the sun  行星
    Venusian
a.  of or having to do with the plant Venus 金星的
n.  supposed Venus being 金星人
    satellite
n.  spacecraft that goes round the planet earth and sends back radio and television signals; heavenly body that goes round a plant (人造)卫星
    signal
n.  信号;暗号
    astronomer
n.  person who studies the science of the sun, moon, stars and planets
    天文学家  
    telescope  
n.  instrument with special glasses used for seeing distant things
    extremely 
ad. very 极端,非常
     extreme
a.
    feasibility
ad. possibility of being carried or done 可行性
    feasible
a.
    manned  
a.  occupied by one or more persons 载人的
    saucer
n.  浅碟;茶托
    flying saucer
n.  飞碟
    conference
n.  meeting
    press conference
n.  meeting arranged by an important person to which news reporters are invited to listen to a statement or ask questions 记者招待会
    technology
n.  技术
    conclusion
n.  decision of opinion reached by reasoning 结论
    conclude
v.
    reporter
v.  person who gathers news for a newspaper, magazine, or radio or TV station 记者
    compose
vt. make up, form 组成,构成
    concrete
n. building material made by mixing cement with sand, small stones and water 混凝土
    atmosphere
n.  all the gasses round the earth; air in a place 大气;空气
    carbon
n.  碳
    monoxide
n.  一氧化物
    deadly
a.  causing death; likely to cause death 致命的
    gas
n.  气体
    survive
vi. remain alive; continue to live or exist 活下来;幸存
vt. remain alive after; live longer than  经历...后还活着;比...活得长
    survival
n.
    program
n.  plan of what it to be done 计划
    concern
vt. be of importance or interest to; have an effect on 涉及,关系到
    oxygen
n.  氧,氧气
    originally
ad. formerly 起初,原来
    original
a.
    hazard
n.  danger
    hover
vi. stay in or near one place in the air 盘旋
    consolidated
a.  untied; combined 联合的
    consolidate
vt.
    belt
n.  area that has some special quality; zone (地)带
    indicate
vt. show
    indication
n. 
    pollute
vt. make (air, water, soil, etc.) dirty with manmade waste 污染
    pollution
n.
    unfit
a.  not good enough; not suitable
    particle
n.  粒子;微粒 
    emit
vt. send out 散发,射出
    emission
n.
    crash
v.  (cause to) break into pieces violently  坠落;猛撞
    smash
v.  (cause to) break into pieces violently (使)碎裂
    stalagmite
n.  石笋
    projection
n.  sth. that stands out from a surface 凸出物
    type
n.  a particular kind, class or group 类型,种类
    granite
n.  hard grey stone used for building  花岗岩
    formation
n.  sth. that is formed; way in which sth. is formed 形成(物)
    skyscraper
n.  very tall building 摩天大楼
    scrape
vt. rub with sth. rough or sharp 刮,擦
    proceed
vi. continue after having stopped (停顿后)继续进行
    fund
n.  sum of money set apart or available for a special purpose 资金;基金
    billion
n.  one thousand million
    zilch
n.  zero; nothing at all


PHRASES & EXPRESSIONS

    (be) known as
    also publicly called; named  以...闻名,通常名叫
    name after
    give the same name as  以...名字命名
    as to
    about, concerning 关于
    base on / upon
    use as a basis or foundation for  以...为基础,把...基于
    for one thing ... (for another)
    in the first place... (in the second place)
    be composed of
    have as members or parts  由...组成
    as far as ... be concerned
    to the degree that it matters to 就...而言
    stick up
    stand upright; project 直立;突出
    give off
    emit; send out 发出;散发出
    set back
    delay the advance of development of  耽搁;阻碍
    

PEOPER NAMES

    Art Buchwald
    阿特.布奇沃德
    Venus
    金星
    Manhattan
    曼哈顿(纽约市中心)
    Zog
    佐格(姓氏)
    Edison
    爱迪生(姓氏)
    Glom
    格洛姆(姓氏)

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UNIT 8. Honesty: Is It Going out of Style?
UNIT 7. There's Only Luck
UNIT 6. The Making of a Surgeon
UNIT 5. The Professor and the Yo-Yo
UNIT 4. My First Job
UNIT 3. Lesson from Jefferson
UNIT 2. The Dinner Party
UNIT 10. Going Home
UNIT 9. The Brain
UNIT 8. Yoe Go Your Way, I'll Go Mine