9. Richard Ryan is stuck in traffic.


man in traffic

Richard Ryan


traffic jam

another man stuck in traffic



beat the traffic: to leave early before the highways and streets become busy

blame: to assign responsibility for a condition

commute: travel to or from work

rush: the time during the morning or the afternoon when there’s the most traffic

spot: location

stuck: unable to move

traffic jam: too many cars in one place prevents movement

tense: worried; concerned



Richard Ryan is stuck in traffic. There must be an accident somewhere up ahead because he’s been sitting in the same spot for the last few minutes. The cars aren’t moving at all. It looks like it’s going to be another slow commute.

Even though he left his house early to beat the traffic, if the cars don’t start to move soon, Richard will be late for a very important meeting. He has to meet with some lawyers who are advising his company on a construction project. Richard is the president of a big company. If he’s late, he won’t get in trouble, but he hates to be late for anything.

Sergey is stuck in the same traffic jam, and he’s headed to the same meeting that Richard is going to. He’s worried about being late, so he gets out his cell phone and calls one of his coworkers to tell her that traffic is bad. Sergey doesn’t know that his boss, Richard, is in the same traffic jam. If he knew that, he wouldn’t be so tense.

Sergey has a reputation for being late to work. He always blames it on the traffic. Everyone tells him he has to leave his house earlier to beat the rush. Sergey likes to stay out late at night, so it’s not easy for him to wake up early.

Both Richard and Sergey live in California where traffic congestion and delays are common problems. Richard is thinking about moving his business to a new location that’s closer to the downtown business district where most of his employees live. If he did that, Sergey could ride his bike to work and forget about getting stuck in a traffic jam.

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Now you try it. Read the paragraph above. If you have a microphone, you can record your voice.


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