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Today's Phrase BBC Learning English 2012

Today's Phrase BBC Learning English 2012

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09/26/2014

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To carry a torch for someone
27
th
July 2012
A man carrying the Olympic torch outside the BBC's offices in White City, London.
Photo by BBC Learning English
Today's Phrase
If you carry a torch for someone, it means you are in love with them.
For example:
 John has carried a torch for Jane for years but she doesn't seem to notice.'George is such a nice guy, isn't he? You carry a torch for him, don't you? No! Well yes actually… is it obvious?' 
Don't confuse it with
To carry the can
 
means to take the blame for something.
For example:
The boss is so lazy but when there's a mistake I always have to carry the can for him.
Interesting fact
The Olympic torch relay passed through White City, which was the site of the very first LondonOlympics held in 1908. The stadium was demolished in 1985 and BBC offices were built in itsplace. A plaque on the wall marks the place where the stadium's finishing line was.
 
Under starter's orders
27
th
July 2012
A man preparing to take part in a running race.
Photo by istock 
Today's Phrase
If you are under starter's orders it means you are waiting for a signal to start a race.
For example:
The athletes have been waiting for this moment for years. They’re under starter’s orders. And they’re off!It was only a second or two but the runners seemed to be under starter’s orders for hoursbefore the pistol was fired.
Don't confuse it with
Under arms
 
means supplied with weapons and prepared to start fighting
For example:
The rebels were under arms and an attack was just a matter of time.
Interesting fact
204 nations will be taking part in the London 2012 Olympics with about 10,500 athletesparticipating in the competition. There will be 302 events in 26 different sports. This is thethird time London has hosted the games. The first time was 1908 and the second in 1948.
 
Like a duck to water
30
th
July 2012
Ye Shiwen wins gold for China in the London 2012 400m swimming event.The 16-year-old also broke the world record.
Photo: David Gray.
Today's Phrase
If you take to something like a duck to water, it means that you discover when you start doinga new activity for the first time, you are very good at it.
For example:
He took to golf like a duck to water. He'd never played before but hit a hole in one!Kate never seemed like the mothering type but when her daughter was born she took to it likea duck to water. She was a real natural!
Don't confuse it with
 A sitting duck 
.
If someone is a sitting duck, it means they are an easy target.
For example:
The soldiers were left exposed on the hill. They really were sitting ducks for the enemy.
Interesting fact
China's Ye Shiwen stormed to gold and set a new world record in the women's 400m medleywith a time of 4 minutes 28.43 seconds at the Aquatics Centre. The 16-year-old took a secondoff Australian defending champion Stephanie Rice's record set at Beijing 2008.

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