1 – Are you “bored” or “boring?” One Point English Lesson

Michael Confusing Words 1 Comment

Check out this conversation between two friends:

  • Bob:  “Hey Tom, How’s it going?”
  • Tom:  “Hi Bob. Pretty good. Hey, how was Tony’s party last night?”
  • Bob: “Well, actually I was pretty boring.”
  • Tom: “Huh?”

Tom was surprised with Bob’s answer. Do you know why? Well, it’s because Bob said he was “boring!” The target point of today’s free English lesson is “bored” vs. “boring.”

Words like bored, excited, interested, amazed, disappointed, etc. describe how a person feels about something.

Words like boring, exciting, interesting, amazing, disappointing, etc. describe the reason a person has a certain feeling about something. For example:

  • The party was boring, so I was bored.  ( I was boring is not correct here)
  • The roller coaster is exciting, so I am excited. 
  • This lesson is interesting, so I am very interested in it.

So,  in our example conversation above, Bob said he was “boring.” If Bob was “boring” then it means he was the reason and the cause of the feeling. But this wasn’t the case. Bob was trying to explain his feeling, and we always use “~ed” to describe a feeling. Bob should have said, ” I was pretty bored.” If Bob is “boring,” I certainly don’t want to go to a party with him!  

Here is some homework to practice this with. If you like, copy and paste this into the “message” box here and I will check your answers!

  1.  If a story amazes you, how would you describe the story?
    How would you describe yourself?
  2. If a job you are doing tires you, how would you describe yourself?
    How would you describe the job?
  3. If a movie bores you, how would you describe the movie?
    How would you describe yourself?
  4. If a painting interests you, how would you describe yourself?
    How would you describe the painting?
  5. If a situation embarrasses you, how would you describe the situation?
    How would you describe yourself?

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