Retail, therapy or obsession?

Speak English with Me

Hi, there! Have you heard of the phrase ‘retail therapy’? Well, there was a time when shopping was used as a therapy, when you were unhappy or depressed, but today shopping has become an obsession and an illness that itself needs some kind of therapy.
You do not believe me? Have you not seen people, stuck to their mobile shopping aps? Shopping as if their lives depended upon catching the cheapest deal. Yes, everyone seems to have gone completely berserk (crazy). Agreed, there are terrific deals, but going completely nuts (going mad) about every sale is not the right thing to do.
People have gone so crazy that the other day, a student wanted to leave the class half an early because an online shopping site was to start its sale and the student did not want to miss on the best articles on discount. Can you believe it?
Oh, by the way, in case, you have still not got the meaning, retail therapy means ‘shopping for treatment’. So, guys, do not go overboard, do not buy things just because there is a sale going on, sales happen every now and then, (regularly) buy when you have to or when there is something really worth buying. It is expensive to shop when you do not need the stuff that you have bought, you know.
Shopping reminds me of malls, in Ahmedabad, we have some malls- some nice and some not so nice, but then something is better than nothing, which means that at least we do have malls, so it is cool. Okay, take a look at the sentences given below:
1. I must shop for the grocery (items of food sold in a grocery or supermarket) today.
2. I need to shop for the grocery today.
3. I ought to shop for the grocery today.
If you notice the words in the italics, you will see that they are similar to each other, except for the fact that they are different in their degree of urgency. ‘Ought to’ is most urgent, whereas ‘need to’ is more urgent than ‘must’. These words are modals, modal auxiliaries. Helping verbs or auxiliary verbs such as will, shall, may, might, can, could, must, ought to, should, would, used to, need are used in conjunction with main verbs to express shades of time and mood.
Here is a small exercise on modals, try it and see if you can do it. Next week, together with the answers, I shall also discuss modals in detail. Fill in one word per blank, like ‘ought to’
Modals that you can fill in are: could, must, should, ought to, would,
1. You _________ have found the pen, had you put it in proper place.
2. The girls _______ _______ have listened to their parents and not taken the late night train.
3. It _______ have been jealousy that made him kill his brother.
4. You _______ not touch anything without permission.
5. She _______ have done it all by herself, she was just acting too smart.
6. I ________ go and get mom from the station.
7. She _______ decide to join the company later on.
8. The rule says, “You ________ follow the instruction”.
9. ________ you hold the baby for a while?
10. Is it a dream or reality, pinch me _________ you?
So, try out this exercise and we shall discuss it next week.
And, yes, watch this movie called Confessions of a Shopaholic, you’ll know what unnecessary shopping can do to you, plus you will also get to hear a lot of English.
Bye for now.
Key in your mails to me on: surabhi.pillai@gmail.com
Keep smiling…

Newsletter Subscribe