009 - Expression: From Rags to riches


In this expression episode, you'll learn how to use the common English expression "from rags to riches" and about The California Gold Rush.

The American English Podcast

The American English Podcast

By Shana Thompson

"Gold! Gold! Gold! Once it became clear that the rumors of gold were for real, nearly everybody in California thought . . . Can I drop what I’m doing and make a fortune mining gold? A whole lot of people decided, yes they could, and off they went." – The Gold Rush by PBS America


Hello and welcome to this new podcast episode. That snippet you just heard was from the American Gold Rush History documentary, and the gold rush is what we’re going to talk about in today’s episode. Before we do, let’s begin with a joke. 

The question is: What did the leprechaun say when I asked him for a dollar? 

Answer: Sorry. I’m a little short. 

This one’s actually funny. A leprechaun is a character from Irish folklore. And we usually think of a short little bearded man who usually wears a green coat, a green hat and partakes in mischief. So, he is short.

So did you get the joke? Short can mean the opposite of tall, but it can also mean that you don’t have enough money. If you go to the store and try and buy something but realize you don’t have enough money, you can tell the cashier "sorry, I’m short. I need to run to the car to get more money." 

Your Host

Shana - ESL Teacher

Hi Everyone! I am an ESL teacher from California and the host of the American English Podcast. Learn more about me and my teaching experience here.

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