Pent up

Lesson #
April 20, 2020
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"Pent up" energy is energy that is stored and unreleased.


Transcript

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Pent up

Today’s expression is “pent up.” It looks like a phrasal verb, but I don’t believe it is one. Pent-up acts like an adjective and it means “not released” or “confined.”

It’s very common to use the expression with the word “demand.” In economic terms, “demand” refers to people’s desires and ability to buy something. “Pent-up demand” is a phenomenon where people want to buy something, and they have the money to do so, but for some reason they can’t do it. Once that one reason changes, there will be a flood of demand, as everyone tries to buy something all at once.

Travel restrictions were lifted in Wuhan, and immediately airlines, trains, and buses had to deal with the pent-up demand for travel. After seventy-six days without being able to leave for almost any reason, people had accumulated a long list of travel destinations on their to-do lists. Some was vacation, sure, but a lot of trips people wanted to take were to check on elderly relatives, to return to work, et cetera. They had the desire and money to take those trips, but they couldn’t because of the travel restrictions. They had all this desire that was unreleased. It was building up, more and more each day. That accumulated desire to travel is what we call pent-up demand.

Car-buying is one good example. Every month, people buy new cars. They need to replace their old ones; their families are growing; whatever the reason, people buy new cars every month. But not these months. Dealerships are closed and people are not in a car-buying mood. But eventually, all those people who would have bought cars in February, who would have bought cars in March, who would have bought cars in April…all those people are going to go out and start shopping for cars in June, July, whenever the restrictions are lifted.

Some people say there might be pent-up demand for bigger TV’s. A lot of families might have realized that it’s easier and more convenient to stay at home and watch movies instead of going to the theater. And big TV’s are cheaper every day. So there might be growing—and unsatisfied—demand for large TV’s. It could be that pent-up demand for better home entertainment is building during the lockdown.

I’ll give you a few other things that can be pent-up. Number one: energy. This happens to adults, too, but I would use “pent-up energy” more often to describe kids or pets. What happens if you don’t take your dog out for a walk for a few days? If you’re a dog owner, the image you have in your mind is pent-up energy! If you take your dog out to a park and let him run off-leash after a long rainy week stuck inside, your dog is grateful for the opportunity to release some of that pent-up energy. The desire to go out and run around and play. It’s been building up, building up, and he just couldn’t release it. Then you finally take him out for a long run, and he runs around like a crazy person. Pent-up energy can affect kids too.

So that’s pent-up energy. What about pent-up frustration? Can you imagine what that is? If you’re frustrated with something—with work, with a friend, with family, with your partner—if you don’t talk it over, if you keep it inside, what happens? It gets worse, and worse, and worse…it builds and builds and builds, until finally…you need to release your pent-up frustration. Maybe it’s a big fight. Maybe you just release it all at once. Maybe you put on your boxing gloves and go to the gym and release your pent-up frustration or anger that way. It’s not good to let anger or frustration build inside of you, because one day you’ll need to release all those pent-up feelings.

Do you think there might be pent-up demand for going to the movies? The movie theater chains are saying there is. They’re saying that after the social distancing rules are relaxed, you’ll see people want to go out to the movies because they haven’t been able to do so these last few weeks. I’m not so sure. I think maybe people have gotten their fill of movies and TV shows, if they’re got streaming at home. I don’t think there will be quite as much pent-up demand as some movie theater chains are hoping.

Quote of the week

“The first wealth is health.” That is the quote of the week, and it’s by the poet Ralph Waldo Emmerson, who recognized that good health is the foundation of prosperity. That’s true for individuals; it’s also true for societies. And hopefully after this crisis dies down, we will all recognize that good health for everyone is a baseline requirement for being a prosperous society. “The first wealth is health,” Ralph Waldo Emmerson, is our quote of the week.

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That brings us to the end of Lesson 252 of Plain English. It’s great to have you with us as always, and remember that you can see the video lesson and flashcards and all the other episode resources at PlainEnglish.com/252.

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¿Hablas español?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into Spanish. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

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你说中国话?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Parlez-vous français?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Você fala português?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

日本語は話せますか?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Parli italiano?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Sen Türkçe konuşmayı biliyor musun?

The transcripts of Plain English lessons are available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation. Turkish translations are available starting at Lesson 278.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Mówisz po polsku?

The transcript of Plain English lessons are available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation. Polish translations are available starting at Lesson 278.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

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