Задания 13. Выделение информации в прочитанном тексте
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All the waste packaging of supermarkets is recycled.
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It is believed that the idea of supermarkets first belonged to an American businessman who opened a self-service grocery store in 1916. The main advantage of the new American store was that the goods were stocked on the shelves, so the customers could take their own goods and bring them to the front of the store to pay for them. Although there was a high risk of stealing, the owner found the new shop's organisation more effective because it allowed him to reduce the number of shop assistants. Later the new shop organisation spread widely throughout European countries.
Nowadays supermarkets are as British as football and cricket. In the UK 90% of all food is bought at five different supermarket chains. That makes these companies extremely powerful, especially when they deal with small businesses, for example farmers. Milk is a good example. Supermarkets like to use things such as milk and bread, which are at the top of almost everyone's shopping list, to attract customers. To offer the lowest price the supermarkets need to buy milk from dairy farmers very cheaply, so big supermarket chains agree on a very low price and dictate it to farmers. If the farmers don't agree to that price, supermarkets start to look for the cheapest possible products abroad instead.
The consumers are of course happy to get cheaper products, but they should also keep in mind the influence supermarkets have on the environment. First of all there's packaging. Supermarkets like all the products to be packed because it makes it easier to put them neatly on the shelves. Consequently, supermarkets produce nearly 10 million tons of waste packaging in the UK every year, less than 5% of which is recycled. Some supermarkets put large recycling bins in their car parks, trying to create the image that they are environmentally friendly. However, that is just an image.
To reach the supermarket shelves the products often have to travel half the globe. Due to preservatives even milk products can stay unspoiled for months. It's a great advantage for the supermarket as yoghurt bought from a farmer can't be kept for longer than 2 days. That is why many small farmers do not even get a chance to compete with long-lasting imported goods.
When a new supermarket is planned, everyone says that a lot of new jobs will be created. In reality the number of jobs lost in the area is greater than the number of new positions in the supermarket. Within a 15km radius of every new supermarket that opens the number of people working in the food business goes down. It happens because all the small shops nearby are forced to close.
The best way to prepare for a marathon is to join a running club.
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Many Americans enjoy running marathons – a forty-two kilometer race. More than three hundred marathons were held in the United States last year and that number is expected to grow.
The New York City marathon is held every year on the first Sunday of November. It is a big sporting event with thousands of participants. One can see celebrities and famous sportsmen among the marathon runners. A famous cyclist, whose excellent physical condition helped him complete the marathon in less than three hours, admitted that the race was ‘the hardest physical thing he had ever done’.
While the New York City marathon is the biggest, the Boston Marathon is the oldest one. Boston’s is held in April. Boston is famous for the fact that Roberta Gibb became the first woman to unofficially run that marathon in 1966. At that time, people did not believe women could run marathons. The Olympics did not hold a women’s marathon event until 1984 in Los Angeles, California.
Today’s marathons welcome everyone. The popularity of the sport has spread among people who are interested in health and fitness. Many middle-aged people like to spend a weekend visiting a new city and running a marathon there. Some magazines call the middle-aged people of today the ‘marathon generation’. Forty-three percent of marathon runners in the United States are 40 years old or older. There are many organisations for marathoners. Nowadays many local running clubs offer training programmes that can prepare runners for the big race. A marathon really starts several months before the race. You need to run about five days every week to prepare. Most runs should be for half an hour. You should also try to run for an hour or more each Sunday. This is a very basic way for an average runner to prepare.
What you can’t prepare for is running in a big marathon with thousands of other participants. A marathon is in many ways a social event. There is a sense of community. The spectators are as much a part of the race as the runners. Almost every age group is present. At the start of the race there is a lot of shouting as the runners want to release some tension. They have three to five hours of hard running ahead of them.
However there are people who want to run farther. For them ultra-marathons are organised that take running to a different level. An ultra-marathon is any race longer than a marathon. One of the oldest ultra-marathons is held annually in California, USA. It is 160 kilometers long. Last year, 210 people finished the race. The winner, Graham Cooper, finished in eighteen hours and seventeen minutes.
While working as a caretaker Ben Southall had lots of free time.
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Have you ever heard of the Great Barrier Reef? It is the world's largest coral reef system along the eastern coast of Australia. In February 2009 an extraordinary position was advertised by the Australian Tourism Office. The advertisement ran that the Great Barrier Reef needed a caretaker for half a year. It was for a special person who would look after the Reef.
The job offered a large salary, free accommodation in a luxury villa, and transportation there and around the islands. All expenses would be paid: the winner wouldn't need to spend any extra money on anything.
The job's duties were pretty simple. You could only dream of such requirements. First, the person had to speak English and swim well. Second, on the island his responsibility included writing a weekly Internet blog. That's right, weekly, not even daily! The job description also required the successful applicant to explore the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, swim, make friends with the locals and generally enjoy the tropical climate and lifestyle. A real dream!
Within the first 2 days of the contest, the tourism office received more than seven thousand online applications. All told, 34,000 people of all different nationalities applied. Each made and presented a 60-second video resume. They had to be creative and they were. In the end 16 people were chosen, who flew to Australia for the final selection. The candidates were interviewed and the winner was Ben Southall from the UK.
Ben greatly enjoyed the dream job he had got. He realised that people knew very little about planet earth and its treasures. Living in big cities, they forgot how important the flora and fauna of this world were. Every time Ben went outdoors, he could discover something new. “Every time I dived or went underwater, I forgot about all the troubles above water and concentrated on living in the moment. It was a good way to clean the mind and build respect for the natural world,” Ben said.
Ben's life on the island was not just fun. It was very busy, busier than most people imagined, and certainly busier than Ben himself had imagined. He worked seven days a week and up to 19 hours a day. The Best Job included travelling to over 60 islands of the Reef almost every day. It was not just looking after the Reef, Ben had a lot of meetings, press conferences and interviews. He was getting a lot of attention all the time and he couldn't get away from it. That was probably the hardest part of the job.
Moreover, any adventure has a certain degree of risk. Swimming and diving on the Great Barrier Reef was not different. Ben had to deal with whales, sharksand other huge sea creatures. Surprisingly, the most dangerous thing was a small jellyfish about the size of a little finger. It's considered to be extremely poisonous and Ben was stung by it. He had to spend a couple of days in hospital but luckily recovered after a course of antibiotics.
Ben often says that the project has taught him a few valuable lessons. Working with the Internet is one of those jobs you can do 24 hours a day. Ben realised it was hard to separate life and work, but this he had to do. He also said: “I've learned that we get one life on earth so we have to use it. There'll always be other countries to visit, other people to meet and other adventures to meet. This is what I wish to do. I'm planning to go to Asia in a few years time”.
Banksy's film was based on his autobiography.
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Where do you expect to see graffiti? Probably not in a museum. Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, in the south-west of England, was the kind of place where you could see classical pictures and statues. However, in the summer of 2009 the exhibition ‘Banksy versus the Bristol Museum’ opened. The exhibition presented more than a hundred works by Banksy, one of the world’s most famous graffiti artists.
Banksy is a puzzle to all. He keeps his identity secret. He hardly ever gives interviews and likes to remain anonymous. Nobody knows much about his life or his background but many people believe that his real name is either Robert Banks or Robin Banks and that he was born in England, somewhere near Bristol.
Banksy’s street art is always provocative. It's his way of communicating with society. His graffiti is characterised by bright and frequently shocking images, often combined with slogans. His work is often a personal protest against wars, social policy or people's behaviour. Although graffiti is not allowed in cities, Banksy's works have become immensely popular.
Banksy believes that art should not be used for advertising. He has refused four times to do adverts for Nike, a famous sportswear company.
A year after the Bristol exhibition, Banksy made a film called “Exit Through the Gift Shop”. The film tells the story of a street artist. It got many positive reviews from the critics and from the general audience.
Another curious fact from Banksy's biography is that once he was named among the 100 most influential people in the world. He actually found himself in the company of Barack Obama, Steve Jobs and Lady Gaga. When he was asked to send a photo, Banksy sent a picture of himself with a paper bag (recyclable, naturally) over his head. His fans still don’t really know who he is.
Bristol isn’t the only place in Britain to welcome and accept graffiti. A park in Dundee, Scotland, has the longest legal graffiti wall (almost 110 metres long) in the UK. Anyone can paint on the wall any time they like. The idea of this graffiti wall project is to demonstrate the positive side of graffiti and to organise workshops and graffiti classes for local children.
Even the capital of the country could not stay free of street art. There's a special website dedicated to London's street art and artists. The site's team is a group of enthusiastic young people who are closely connected with the street art world. They try to record and register all the works and display them on their “Street Art London” site. That is quite a job to do! The reason is that street art is very temporal and short-lived: graffiti is soon covered by another wall painting so they have to be quick to take a picture and post it on the website.
Red noses are sold at the same price in all shops and supermarkets.
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There's one special day in Britain when you can see lots of people all over the country wearing clown red noses. This is known as Red Nose Day. It's arranged by a charity organisation “Comic Relief” whose aim is to collect money for people who are in need.
“Comic Relief” was started in 1985 by the writer Richard Curtis and the comedian Lenny Henry. At that time, people in Ethiopia were suffering from an awful hunger and something had to be done. The idea was simple. Richard and Lenny decided to gather a group of much-loved British comedians to give public performances. And in this way they would collect money to help people in desperate need. They also hoped to let people know about poverty in Africa. Richard and Lenny strongly believe that laughter is the best weapon to fight tragedy, poverty and injustice. That was how “Comic Relief” was born.
One of the main events organised by “Comic Relief” is Red Nose Day. It takes place every two years in the spring, though many people think that this day should be held annually. The first Red Nose Day was held on 5 February 1988 and since then they have been held on the second or third Friday in March.
The event is widely celebrated in the UK and many people consider it to be a type of unofficial national holiday. The symbol of the day is the red nose which you can find in various supermarkets and charity shops. The thing is that red noses are not sold and you cannot buy them, but you can leave a small sum of money (a donation) and just take one. The exact sum of the donation is not fixed. You can leave as much as you want — it's an act of charity.
Since 1985 there have been all kinds of noses: plastic, soft, boring common ones, there were noses that looked like faces, noses that made noises, noses that changed colour when they got hot… This year it's a dinosaur theme, which means noses are shaped like small creatures from pre-history.
On Red Nose Day money-raising events take place all over the country and many schools participate.
In the evening of Red Nose Day a ‘telethon' takes place on the BBC channels. This is like a televised marathon that shows a selection of the events of the day, and lots of short comic performances and reports of how the money will
be spent. It starts in the evening and goes through into the early hours of the morning.
There’s a Red Nose Day page on Facebook and you can follow it on Twitter. People also upload videos of local charity events on YouTube and Facebook.
So, if you are ever in the UK on Red Nose Day, now you know why you will find normal people wearing red noses and doing silly things! It's all for a good reason!
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