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名人教英文﹕To have legs 可以風行

【明報專訊】Editor: So what have you got?

編輯:你有什麼消息?

Reporter: I got a tip-off about the Energy Minister accepting a bribe from the Benzolex Oil Company in exchange for giving them a licence to drill in a prohibited area.

記者:有人給我告密,說能源部長收了本索萊斯石油公司賄賂,發予禁區鑽探石油許可證。

Editor: Who from?

編輯:消息來自誰人?

Reporter: I don't know. It was an anonymous phone call.

記者:我不知道。那是個匿名電話。

Editor: Well you know that's not enough for a newspaper story.

編輯:報紙的報道,不能以此為據。

Reporter: I know, I know. But one of my government contacts told me that she knows the minister had dinner with the Benzolex CEO several times before he gave them the licence.

記者:不錯,不錯,但政府內部有人給我消息,說能源部長發許可證之前,跟本索萊斯總裁吃過幾次飯。

Editor: That's not proof of a bribe. Is that all you've got?

編輯:那不能證明他受賄。你沒有其他資料了麼?

Reporter: No. I found out that the minister is married to the sister of the Benzolex CEO.

記者:有。我發現能源部長就是本索萊斯總裁的妹夫。

Editor: Put it all together and it's still not a story that's got legs. We need proof of bribery to print anything and proof that will stand up in court. Otherwise we'll get sued. I'll give you two more weeks to come up with something more solid.

編輯:這些資料,湊合起來,還不能成為一段好的報道。說人受賄,報道必須有證據,才可以付梓,而這些證據必須法律上不能質疑,否則我們會被控告。我再給你兩個星期,看可不可以找到較實在的材料。

Reporter: OK. Thanks. I think I can do it.

記者:好,謝謝。應該做得到的。

■To have legs 是美國俗語,直譯是「有腳」,常用來說主意、理論、產品、新聞報道等可以成功或廣受歡迎,有時會改為意思相同的 with legs,例如:(1) He thought my business idea had legs and entered into partnership with me(他認為我這個生意計劃可行,就和我合伙)。(2) I am sure this is a book with legs(我認為這本書可以風行)。

作者簡介﹕專研中英文,著有時事評論、英語學習、散文等書籍。

作者︰古德明

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