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Over the past century, all kinds of unfairness and discrimination have been condemned or made illegal. But one insidious form continues to thrive: alphabetism. This, for those as yet unaware of such a disadvantage, refers to discrimination against those whose surnames begin with a letter in the lower half of the alphabet.

It has long been known that a taxi firm called AAAA cars has a big advantage over Zodiac cars when customers thumb through their phone directories. Less well known is the advantage that Adam Abbott has in life over Zoë Zysman. English names are fairly evenly spread between the halves of the alphabet. Yet a suspiciously large number of top people have surnames beginning with letters between A and K.
Thus the American president and vice-president have surnames starting with B and C respectively; and 26 of George Bush's predecessors (including his father) had surnames in the first half of the alphabet against just the second half. Even more striking, six of the seven heads of government of the G7 rich countries are alphabetically advantaged (Berlusconi, Blair, Bush, Chirac, Chrétien and Koizumi). The world's three top central bankers (Greenspan,Duisenberg and Hayami) are all close to the top of the alphabet, even if one of them really uses Japanese characters. As are the world's five richest men (Gates, Buffett, Allen, Ellison and Albrecht).
Can this merely be coincidence? One theory, dreamt up in all the spare time enjoyed by the alphabetically disadvantaged, is that the rot sets in early. At the start of the first year in infant school, teachers seat pupils alphabetically from the front, to make it easier to remember their names. So short-sighted Zysman junior gets stuck in the back row, and is rarely asked the improving questions posed by those insensitive teachers. At the time the alphabetically disadvantaged may think they have had a lucky escape. Yet the result may be worse qualifications, because they get less individual attention, as well as less confidence in speaking publicly.


The humiliation continues. At university graduation ceremonies, the ABCs proudly get their awards first; by the time they reach the Zysmans most people are literally having a ZZZ. Shortlists for job interviews, election ballot papers, lists of conference speakers and attendees: all tend to be drawn up alphabetically, and their recipients lose interest as they plough through them.

49. What does the author mean by "most people are literally having a ZZZ" (line 2, paragraph 5)?
[A] They are getting impatient.
They are noisily dozing off.
[C] They are feeling humiliated.
[D] They are busy with word puzzles.

which one is the best answer? The answer reference is B

what do you think ? Can American fall asleep at university graduation ceremonies? what "literally" means here? why not A ?

 "as" is a conjunction or a adv. in the sentence “As are the world's five richest men”

Thank you very much for reply!

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Hi,

49. What does the author mean by "most people are literally having a ZZZ" (line 2, paragraph 5)?
They are getting impatient.
They are noisily dozing off.
They are feeling humiliated.
They are busy with word puzzles.

which one is the best answer? The answer reference is B ' Yes, B. 'ZZZ' refers to the sound of snoring.

what do you think ? Can American fall asleep at university graduation ceremonies? The author says that they can. But the whole tone of the article is facetious.

what "literally" means here? The opposite of 'figuratively'.
eg I'm very angry. When I see you, I'm going to kill you. Figuratively, this just means that I'm angry.
eg Im very angry. When I see you, I'm going to kill you. The literal meaning is that I'm going to murder you. You'll actually be dead.

why not A ? 'ZZZ' refers to sleep.

"as" is a conjunction or a adv. in the sentence “As are the world's five richest men” Conjunction..

Thank you very much for reply!


Best wishes, Clive


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Thank you very much!
does "impatient" refers to the emotion of annoy ,dyspeptic and the  behavior that somebody move his body continually.and the author means they are laziness .am i right?

and if "so" is a conjunction ,why "As are the world's five richest men" is a simple sentence no a Complex Sentence ?Can it be used like this ? 

thank you!
Hi again,

does "impatient" refers to the emotion of annoy ,dyspeptic and the behavior that somebody move his body continually.and the author means they are laziness .am i right? 'Impatient' means 'lacking patience', 'unable to accept delay'. It's a mental attitude. You may or may not be able to see impatience by looking at someone.

and if "so" is a conjunction ,why "As are the world's five richest men" is a simple sentence no a Complex Sentence ?Can it be used like this ? It's not really an independent sentence,. It needs to be joined to the preceding sentence, eg by a comma.

eg Correct - Mary likes Coke, as does Tom.

eg Incorrect - Mary likes Coke. As does Tom.

Best wishes, Clive