Today’s expression is to be “stuck with” something. When you’re “stuck with” something, you have to live with it. You don’t have any choice, and it’s usually something unpleasant. The world broadly has two choices when it comes to recovering from coronavirus: either we develop a vaccine, or we develop herd immunity, where we let the virus pass through the population and eventually sixty to eighty percent of us have gotten it.
Scientists are working around the clock to develop a vaccine. But there just isn’t one available yet, and we don’t know when it will be. Maybe it will be available in a year. Maybe it will be longer. For now, though, we’re stuck with the other option: developing herd immunity. That’s not a good option. For one thing, it means a lot of people are going to get sick and die from this disease. For another, it means social distancing is going to continue for a long time, in one form or another. It’s not a good option, but we’re stuck with it. We don’t have any other choice: at least, not while a vaccine is still under development.
In my business, I conduct a lot of face-to-face meetings. But as you might expect, that’s not very possible these days. So I’m stuck with Zoom and Skype. I don’t really have a choice. I have to use those tools instead of meeting face to face. I’m stuck with Zoom and Skype for now.
Here’s another good one. I’m spending a lot more time at home lately and I’m starting to realize that my apartment gets really cold during the day, especially my living room, which has a lot of windows. It’s because there’s cold air coming in the windows. These are older, lower-quality windows that unfortunately let the cold air in. The problem is, replacing the windows is a big project. That is what’s needed, but it’s going to cost a lot of money. I need to save up for this for a while—it’s going to be another year or two before I’ll be able to replace them. For now, I’m stuck with these old windows. I tried putting this clear plastic over them to keep out the cold. That’s not really working. But I’m stuck with these windows for the next couple of years.
Have you ever paid for something in advance, only to find that you don’t quite like it as much after a little while, but you can’t really change? I bought a printer that worked with my computer at the time. But then I got a new computer, and the printer doesn’t work with the new one—don’t ask me why. But now I’m stuck with this printer that doesn’t work on my new computer. I have to live with a printer that I can only use from my iPad. So if I want to print something, I save it to Dropbox, open it on my iPad, and then print it from there. It’s not ideal. I’m stuck with a printer that doesn’t work with my new computer.
This is a case where, yes, I do have a choice. I could buy another printer. That is an option. But it’s an unappealing option because the printer is pretty new. I don’t want to be buying yet another brand new printer. When I say I’m stuck with the one I have, I meant that I’m going to suffer through this situation because replacing it isn’t a good option either.
JR’s song of the week
The song of the week, selected by JR, is “July” by Noah Cyrus. She is the younger sister of Miley Cyrus, but has a much different style. She has much more of a singer-songwriter style, just her and her guitar in this song. She’s just 20 years old, too, and sounds great in this song. JR’s song of the week is “July” by Noah Cyrus.
That’s all for today’s lesson. Thanks for joining us. Again, I do sincerely hope you are staying safe. Take care of your kids, look after the older people in your life. These are unsettling times indeed. And if you can’t be face-to-face with the people in your life, make sure to pick up the phone—and not just to text—pick up the phone or schedule a video call.
And on a lighter note, remember that you can also make new connections and take advantage of the live video calls we’re starting at PlainEnglish.com/live.