Informal and Formal Telephone Conversations
Неофициальные и официальные телефонные разговоры
MR. BLOCK: They say that entertaining guests is an essential part of diplomatic activity. Do you share this opinion?
MR. BULATOV: I would rather consider entertaining not an essential but a most important part of diplomatic work. Apart from improving the public image of the country you represent it helps to establish contacts and make friends.
MR. BL OCK: It takes a lot of time and efforts to say nothing of money to arrange a diplomatic reception such as an official dinner, for instance.
MR. BULATOV: Yes, it does. But the most difficult job is to make the people you have invited feel comfortable and at ease.
MR. BLOCK: I suppose it depends on the host.
MR. BULATOV: And the hostess, the way she works out the seating plan and observes the order of precedence. Ministry officials and foreign diplomats are touchy people, you know.
MR. BLOCK: Should the common interests and the profession of the invited guests be taken into consideration while arranging the seating plan?
MR. BULATOV: If you want your dinner to proceed smoothly you ensure it as far as possible. The conversation among the guests will be more lively, and most probably there will be no conflicting situations.
MR. BLOCK: Conversation is an art.
MR. BULATOV: You are right. A conversation is not an interchange of words, but ideas. Even a dinner conversation should be thoughtful, natural and still light. It is an art which is acquired by experience.
MR. BLOCK: Some topics are in themselves unpleasant or are sure to bring out from some guests dissatisfaction or even anger.
MR. BULATOV: I don't think that there are taboo subjects the discussion of which should be avoided.
MR. BLOCK: Are there any topics which you wouldn't recommend to touch upon during an official dinner?
MR. BULATOV: If there are guests whom you don't know well enough, avoid to talk on local or national politics, religion, death and other tragedies.
MR. BLOCK: Some people are interested in local scandals, gossip and divorces.
MR. BULATOV: Exclude them. There are some topics which interest almost everyone and are fairly sure to go well in any company. These are books, the theatre and motion pictures, radio and TV programmes, travel-places visited, scientific achievements and so on.
MR. BLOCK: In other words, the worth of the topic depends on the time, the place, and the people you are talking to.
MR. BULATOV: You are right, Mr. Block.
an essential part - существенная связь
to share opinions - делиться мнением
to make friends - заводить друзей
to say nothing (of) - не говоря уже о...
touchy people - обидчивые люди
lively conversation - оживленный разговор
gossip - сплетня
an interchange of words - обмен словами
art - искусство
to touch upon a subject - касаться предмета
divorce - развод
dissatisfaction - чувство неудовлетворенности
guest - гость
seating plan - план расположения гостей за столом
to avoid - избегать
death - смерть