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Idiomatic expressions

IDIOMS
absent-minded: forgetful (distraído) all ears: eager to listen to someone (todo oídos) all of a sudden: suddenly, without advance warning (repentinamente) beat around the bush: speak indirectly or evasively (dar vueltas para hacer algo) behind the times: old fashioned (anticuado) blow one's own horn: praise oneself (fanfarronear, hacer alarde) brand new: absolutely new (flamante) catch one's eye: attract one's attention (llamar la atención) catch (someone) red-handed: find someone in the middle of doing something wrong (atrapar a alguien con las manos en la masa) change horses in midstream: make new plans or choose a new leader in the middle of an important activity (cambiar de caballo en la mitad del río) change (one's) mind: change one`s decision (cambiar de opinión) come across: find something or meet someone by chance (encontrarse repentinamente con algo o alguien) come into fashion: become fashionable (ponerse de moda) crocodile tears: a show of sorrow that is not really felt (lágrimas de cocodrilo) cry over spilt milk: cry or complain about something that has already happened (llorar sobre leche derramada)

EXAMPLES
My grandfather is very absentminded and often forgets his key. Okay, I'm all ears, please tell me about the party. All of a sudden it became cloudy and began to rain. Stop beating around the bush and give us your final decision. My aunt is a little behind the times. He is always blowing his own horn and is very annoying at times. He was finally able to buy a brandnew car. I tried to catch her eye but she didn`t notice me. The policeman caught the boy redhanded when he was stealing the candy.

They decided to change horses in midstream and that is probably why they lost the election. He changed his mind and said that he would not go to the movie tonight. I came across an interesting story in the newspaper the other day. She says that although bell-bottom pants have come into fashion again she will never wear them. He said that he was very sorry but his tears were just crocodile tears. Don't cry over spilt milk. You can never change the past.

die out: die or disappear slowly until all gone (desaparecer, extinguirse) doll up: dress in fancy clothes (emperifollarse, vestirse de moda) do without: manage without something (arreglárselas sin algo) dressed to the nines (teeth): dressed elegantly (elegantemente vestido, "hasta los dientes") dress up: put on one's best clothes (vestirse formalmente) drop (someone) a line: write or mail a note or letter to someone (escribirle a alguien unas líneas) easy-going: tolerant and relaxed (tolerante, de fácil convivencia) eat like a bird: eat very little (comer como un pajarito) eat like a horse: eat a lot (comer como un caballo) eat one's words: admit being wrong in something one has said, retract one's statement (tragarse las palabras) end up: finish, finally do something (terminar por) face the music: accept the consequences of something (enfrentar los problemas) fall behind: fail to keep up with work or studies or payments, etc. (atrasarse en el trabajo, estudios, pagos, etc.) fall in love with: begin to love someone (enamorarse de) fed up with: disgusted or bored with someone or something (harto de) figure out: try to understand or solve (entender, darse cuenta)

Dinosaurs died out millions of years ago. She was all dolled up for the party at the downtown hotel If there is no sugar, we'll have to do without. The stars were all dressed to the nines (teeth) during the Academy Awards ceremony. He decided to dress up for dinner at the restaurant. She promised that she would drop me a line when she gets to Singapore. He has a very easy-going management style. He eats like a bird. That's why he can`t put on enough weight to join the football team. He eats like a horse but he never puts on any weight. He was forced to eat his words after his boss proved that he was wrong.

We ended up going to the restaurant after the movie last night. He is going to have to face the music sooner or later. He fell behind with his homework at the beginning of the term and had problems throughout the year. I fell in love with her the first time that I saw her at the restaurant. I think that he is getting fed up with the constant demands of his boss. He finally figured out how to use the new video recorder.

fit as a fiddle: in good athletic condition or health (como un violín) fix someone up with someone: help someone get a date by arranging a meeting for the two (arreglar algo con alguien) for all the world: for anything, for any price (por nada del mundo) for better or worse: depending on how one looks at the matter, with good or bad effects (para bien o para mal) from hand to hand: from one person to another and another (de mano en mano) from the bottom of one's heart: with great feeling, sincerely (de todo corazón, sinceramente) from now on: from this moment forward (de aquí en más) from scratch: from the very beginning (de cero, de la nada) from time to time: occasionally (cada tanto, de vez en cuando) drop (someone) a line: write or mail a note or letter to someone (escribirle a alguien unas líneas) easy-going: tolerant and relaxed (tolerante, de fácil convivencia) eat like a bird: eat very little (comer como un pajarito) eat like a horse: eat a lot (comer como un caballo) eat one's words: admit being wrong in something one has said, retract one's statement (tragarse las palabras)

Her grandfather is 92 years old but he is as fit as a fiddle. I tried to fix my sister up with a date with my friend but she refused me.

For all the world I do not know what he is trying to tell me with the notes that he writes For better or worse he has decided to quit his job and go to live in Brazil.

The plate of food went from hand to hand until finally it was all finished. I thanked him from the bottom of my heart for helping my daughter when she was sick. From now on I will study Italian every day. He decided to build the house from scratch. We go to that restaurant from time to time. She promised that she would drop me a line when she gets to Singapore. He has a very easy-going management style. He eats like a bird. That's why he can`t put on enough weight to join the football team. He eats like a horse but he never puts on any weight. He was forced to eat his words after his boss proved that he was wrong.

end up: finish, finally do something (terminar por) face the music: accept the consequences of something (enfrentar los problemas) fall behind: fail to keep up with work or studies or payments, etc. (atrasarse en el trabajo, estudios, pagos, etc.) fall in love with: begin to love someone (enamorarse de) fed up with: disgusted or bored with someone or something (harto de) figure out: try to understand or solve (entender, darse cuenta) fit as a fiddle: in good athletic condition or health (como un violín) fix someone up with someone: help someone get a date by arranging a meeting for the two (arreglar algo con alguien) for all the world: for anything, for any price (por nada del mundo) for better or worse: depending on how one looks at the matter, with good or bad effects (para bien o para mal) from hand to hand: from one person to another and another (de mano en mano) from the bottom of one's heart: with great feeling, sincerely (de todo corazón, sinceramente) from now on: from this moment forward (de aquí en más) from scratch: from the very beginning (de cero, de la nada) from time to time: occasionally (cada

We ended up going to the restaurant after the movie last night. He is going to have to face the music sooner or later. He fell behind with his homework at the beginning of the term and had problems throughout the year. I fell in love with her the first time that I saw her at the restaurant. I think that he is getting fed up with the constant demands of his boss. He finally figured out how to use the new video recorder. Her grandfather is 92 years old but he is as fit as a fiddle. I tried to fix my sister up with a date with my friend but she refused me.

For all the world I do not know what he is trying to tell me with the notes that he writes For better or worse he has decided to quit his job and go to live in Brazil.

The plate of food went from hand to hand until finally it was all finished. I thanked him from the bottom of my heart for helping my daughter when she was sick. From now on I will study Italian every day. He decided to build the house from scratch. We go to that restaurant from time to

People like that are a dime a dozen. A fair-weather friend A person who"s a friend during the good times. substandard. That sprained foot turns out to be a blessing in disguise. which has an unexpected beneficial effect or becomes an asset to you. compared to the debts. A dime a dozen Common. cheap. Something which seems like a problem. de vez en cuando) A A blessing in disguise time. refers to the Apostle Thomas. Often relates to a response to debate or indecision. A fool and his money are soon parted . A drop in the ocean A very small part of something. generally as a proportionate statement. or subjects. Their revenue is a drop in the ocean. you weren"t in the bus crash because of that. A true doubting Thomas. but not the hard times. which is usually derogatory. Actions do speak louder than words. Actions speak louder than words Not passive. active expression of deeds based on opinion or situation. always trying to sell you something. I mentioned my problems with my phone bill and he disappeared for six months. Talk about fair-weather friend. A doubting Thomas Derived from the New Testament.tanto. famous for asking questions and needing explanations to be convinced. he insisted on seeing some proof of the whole idea. It can apply to people. He"s got a real chip on his shoulder about the industry retirement schemes. The value is the idiom. reducing the perceived value of something or someone. A chip on your shoulder This is a grudge for a previous experience. The statement is used to put things into a perspective. He just went and did that.

and was around when he was needed. If you use the phrase A fool and his money. and unity is required for strength. obvious. So she just didn"t buy the car. Nobody wanted to do anything� Talk about a good man being hard to find. Something which is impossible to overlook. the rest of it is redundant. nobody could get anything done to deal with the situation. but also used as a general expression for a repeat experience of something you did. and it did part him from his money. In some cases idioms are reshaped into the sentence structure: That was a friend indeed. have a hair of the dog. or can be used in context. unsubtle. Like many idioms. It means division brings weakness. if he can do that job I"ll be astonished. A friend in need is a friend indeed A friend who"s around when you need them is a real friend. It means stupidity costs money. A good man is hard to find This idiom operates as a context. The implication is you don"t have to earn that money or property again. A fool and his money� that was a dumb investment. see if you can face natural light and oxygen before you go anywhere. A penny saved is a penny earned The value of keeping your money or property. A legend in his own mind Delusive person with inflated opinion of himself. Usually used in relation to too much alcohol. usually related to the overall situation being described. A house divided From the statement A house divided against itself cannot stand. a penny saved. the subject of the idiom is sometimes contracted. They were living in a house divided. for sure. That guy"s a legend in his own mind. A herd of elephants Noisy.This idiom is basically a truism. A hair of the dog Doing something which made you feel terrible as a cure for it. You shouldn"t have drunk so much. and they"d put a herd of elephants out of work. . I have a two year old and a four year old. I literally had to use a phone book.

An equal chance of one of two things happening It was really a toss up whether Alan or Bernard would get that job. almost always sarcastically. A world of their own Insular. A taste of your/his/her/their own medicine Describes someone receiving the same treatment or experience they have inflicted on others. They trashed a whole car park. A toss up Based on literally tossing a coin to make a decision. That car is an albatross around your neck. And men go down to the sea in ships . They live in a world of their own. An acquired taste Expression which refers to an unusual or distasteful experience. They live in a world of their own. not connected to the reality of others. talk about a picture painting a thousand words! A piece of cake Easy. A slap on the wrist A minor penalty. no difficulties. The implication is that the punishment was insufficient. It was a piece of cake to install the new kitchen. simple to do. but they do seem happy. An albatross around your neck Derived from Samuel Taylor Coleridge"s Rime of the Ancient Mariner. something where a single image or statement describes something fully without need for elaboration. it means a lifetime curse.A picture paints a thousand words Used to show the value of the obvious. They got a real taste of their own medicine in that game. don"t know what"s going on around them. and got a slap on the wrist for doing that. Understanding mobile phone plans and bills is an acquired taste. the other side"s forwards ran straight through them. Can be derogatory or a comment on ideals and the perspectives of the subjects of the statement. One look at him.

A rolling stone gathers no moss The idiom is based on the idea that something in motion doesn"t stagnate or collect problems. teachers and parents flooded the media with complaints. As it was. the world will end. Apr�s moi. An own goal Doing something which counts against yourself. His education policy turned out to be a real own goal. la deluge! This is sometimes (hopefully) a sarcastic idiom. often cynical statement of the unchanging nature of something. meaning after the speaker goes. and will ever be This is a fatalistic. A stitch in time saves nine Doing something before hand. without being choosy. . Like they say. We saw the hurricane. He had to do that. meaning in time. Like I said. some risks have to be taken in his work. it means After me. Literally based on the Biblical Flood. The investment was a shot in the dark. As it was. but it paid off very well. and going somewhere safer. it"s like men go down to the sea in ships. the deluge. As the story/song goes A familiar series of events. something the listener will know So. as the story goes. any port in a storm. and hid in the basement of an abandoned house.This statement means that some people do dangerous things as a career. and will ever be� Sausages! A shot/stab in the dark An attempt based on the chance of achieving something while unsure of the possibilities of success. a rolling stone gathers no moss: He wasn"t going to hang around waiting years for them to do something when the business was in trouble. la deluge! I knew they were going to bring in an outside auditor for that business. saves having to do much more work later. Apr�s moi. he eventually proposed. Any port in a storm The expression means getting out of danger any way you can.

because so far I haven't had a chance to do any of this. . turned out we did a stitch in time. I've got an axe to grind here. Everything with that supplier costs an arm and a leg. more than it's worth. and we"d already done the work before the boss wanted it. the best of a group of people or set of subjects. All Bark And No Bite: A person who talks far more aggressively than they act. but they got on to marine biology and it was all Greek to me. Look.Yeah. trying to deal with the economic mess. so we have to find another source. All In The Same Boat: Everyone in the same situation. All Greek to me: Said when the person doesn't understand the subject. when the big rush job came in the same day. That guy's all bark and no bite. we've only got an hour to do 300 orders. An Arm And A Leg: Too expensive. Apple of My Eye: Favorite. We're all in the same boat. Against The Clock: Usually refers to working or doing something against a deadline. with the same problems. Idioms alphabetic list A-B Adding Fuel To The Fire: Aggravating a situation by making it worse. and never yet done a thing about it. An Axe To Grind: To have an axe to grind means to have a situation to sort out where the person has a grievance. He was adding fuel to the fire about complaining about his toast while the kitchen was burning down. We're working against the clock here. he's been talking about fighting this for years. So we didn"t have to do that as well. where the time is counting against you. Often used to warn people against doing something. We were talking about fishing.

Back To Square One: Derived from board games. you're barking up the wrong tree. and I was high as a kite with happiness and relief. What we really needed on the legal team was a back seat driver. . Barking Up The Wrong Tree: Approaching a subject the wrong way. getting the basics wrong. B Back Seat Driver: Someone who's not actually doing the job but giving advice and instructions. after previous failure. Batty Acting strangely. At The Drop Of A Hat: Instantly. Baker's Dozen: From the old baking tradition of baking thirteen loaves in a batch. Bats. In older usage it was also a term for happiness. Modern usage: No point in talking to him when he's as high as a kite. They expect us to do all this at the drop of a hat.That guitar was the apple of my eye. As High As A Kite: This is usually a slang term in modern usage. So after all that they wound up back to Square One. mad. Old usage: I got the job. Back To The Drawing Board: Returning to the planning stage. referring to people who are drunk. If you think you're going to get nicer bills by complaining to the postman. this refers to returning to the start of something. it was back to the drawing board for another scheme. wasting time. We wanted 12. but we got a bakers dozen. Having been unsuccessful in persuading the car salesman to accept lima beans. the best I've ever seen. immediately.

you're beating a dead horse. Sometimes refers to attempts to assist people. no person. beware of anything which comes from an enemy. Be careful what you wish for The expression has a slightly superstitious idiom. making something unimportant seem important. If you think you're going to get a refund on that meal. all photos. Bite Off More Than You Can Chew: Attempting something which is beyond your abilities. literally. They bent over backwards to get the flight arrangements right. Why would a person who you've always loathed give you a present? Beware of Greeks bearing gifts. talk about being between a rock and a hard place. exaggerating facts. Stop beating about the bush! It's a giraffe. not talking about the real subject. referring to the Wooden Horse of Troy. trying to make politicians do anything just because it's the law. The original idea was that the gods would hear you and send you your wish in a way you didn't want. you're batty! Beat A Dead Horse: Trying to do something about an unchangeable fact. meaning beware of what you say. Bend Over Backwards: Go to great lengths to do something. . Be careful what you wish for. You're biting off more than you can chew. It means. not a toaster! Beatup (in relation to subject) Overstatement. Beware of Greeks bearing gifts Dates from the Trojan War. Between A Rock And A Hard Place: A lousy choice between tough situations. I'd say. That new celebrity is a total beatup. that guy could be your new boss.If you think I'm going to that party. They had a choice between bankruptcy and a liquidator. Beating Around The Bush: Not dealing with the major issues.

Blindsided Hit from an unexpected direction. and situations where loyalty to family is more important than other considerations. They were completely blindsided by the price rise. and he shouldn't have done it. so you can do something about it. Blood oath An exaggerated expression of extreme commitment to a statement or cause. Blind as a bat Can't see things properly. Often refers to a person's situation or condition. so I had to help him get out of the mess. Australian version: Blood oath I did the auditing properly. ring them up and tell them. Bloody minded . Literal version: They swore a blood oath to get rid of their manager. but blood is thicker than water. doesn't know what they're looking at. where the speaker is told to bite their tongue as a punishment for saying something out of place. Derived from old methods of swearing oaths of loyalty. It was a dumb thing to do. They came out of that meeting black and blue from the flak and criticism from the shareholders.Bite the bullet Derived from old surgical process where patients were operated upon without anesthetic. You bite your tongue! How dare you say that! Black and blue Bruised and beaten. Modern usage of the expression means to accept an unpleasant situation. or a direction where it wasn't possible to see something coming. The intention was to make sure the patient didn't hurt themselves by uncontrollable movements of their teeth and biting their tongue off. or something they should be ashamed of saying. Bite the bullet. Australian version of expression means something confirming a statement to be absolutely true. Blood Is Thicker Than Water: Refers to family ties. They were blind as bats about buying all that expensive rubbish. Patients were given a bullet to bite to grit their teeth against the pain. Bite Your Tongue: The expression comes from old usage.

American expression based on the farmer's chance of owning his farm. hated by motorists and the auto industry. Can also be used referring to the end of something. A bloody minded person is someone trying to cause problems by their way of dealing with an issue or a situation. Expression relates to the blues. and shocking. that thing is a lemon. Struck out of nowhere. Now relates to a bad product of any kind. and as a metaphor in common usage. contrary way of thinking. Buy a name brand. almost impossible. refers to being unable to achieve a result or in social contexts to make an impression . You really do look blue today. which was famous for its songs about troubling emotional situations. Look. occurrence in a long period of time. a duck with freckles. Winning the lottery was like a bolt from the blue for someone who'd been poor for so long. Bolt from the blue Refers to a lightning bolt out of a blue sky. It was a bit bloody minded of his ex girlfriend to send them a wreath to their wedding. which wouldn't be until the farmer died.Perverse. Break A Leg: Originally a theatrical expression wishing good luck with a performance. still used in acting and now in other performing arts. Job interview? Break a leg! Buy A Lemon: Originally related to a postwar American car which became famous as The Lemon. Fred bought the farm last week. at least. Hit by something very extraordinary. Blue Moon: A rare. Blue Sad. moody. no kidding. C Can't Cut The Mustard: Negative idiom. Buy the farm: Die. It was one of those things you wouldn't expect to see in a blue moon.

can be a person. with all his problems. Fred's sudden crisis really cast a pall over his daughter's wedding. Catty person Negative expression referring to an unpredictable person. information. Putting a real expert into the hedge fund was really setting the cat among the pigeons. I don't know if you could call Mary a catty person. Jack's got a cast iron stomach.All his fancy sales talk just couldn't cut the mustard with those people. Jim's been carrying the weight of the world. whose temper and behavior is sometimes vicious. The idiom creates an expectation of further. The war in Europe cast a shadow over the world. A duck and a horse are chalk and cheese. and isn't quite the same idiom. Shakespeare for financiers� talk about casting pearls before swine! Cat among the pigeons Introduce an element of danger or risk into the environment. Cast a shadow This is an idiom which refers to a different degree of situation and usage than Cast a pall. Cast a pall To introduce a negative element into an otherwise happy occasion. I've seen him eat two meals at once. as the symbolic predator among the harmless pigeons. developments. Chalk and cheese Two quite different things. or a new development in a situation. but we know she has claws. Carrying the weight of the world Severely burdened person. The cat. carrying their troubles and problems. if you ask me. Cast Iron Stomach: A person with strong digestion. recently. . dangerous. untroubled by eating or drinking things which would affect others. Cast pearls before swine To give something beautiful or valuable to those who don't appreciate it.

we're going to get this done. a traditional expression meaning the same thing. Chew a person out: Originally a military expression. Cock and Bull Story: A story which isn't believed by the speaker or person describing it.Charley Horse: American expression referring to a painful tightening of calf tendons. Come again? . We were just chewing the fat about the business situation. and I'm in no hurry to repeat the experience. that story about the hedgehog orchestra. It was pure cock and bull. their credit rating suffered when they got knocked back by the bank. let's chow down! Close but no Cigar: To nearly achieve something or get something right. I'm sure of that. Come hell or high water. I've had Charley Horse a few times. They tried to find the money for that project. Come Hell Or High Water: Regardless of any kind of obstacle. Idiom refers to Fire and Water. literally or metaphorically. Chow Down: To go and get food. and really came a cropper. or things generally. Close but no cigar. and get it done today. it's E=mc squared. Verbal lecture to someone detailing their mistakes. Albert. Come a cropper Land on your backside. people. OK. The cigar was once a prize for contestants in games. Chew the fat Talk about something. John really got chewed out by the manager about how he handled that account.

given the situation. I think we need a cooling off period before we discuss this problem between our clients any further. people. You'd have to say that was a pretty cool. Cool (things. cooling off period This idiom has both a vernacular and a legal meaning which is used as a non-legal idiom. where the speaker. it was originally a Jazz expression meaning good. situations) The word has multiple uses as an idiom. It means. This is a satiric expression. That version of the expression has also become a common usage. telling me to learn to be an intellectual? Come off your high horse! Come on down American expression derived from game shows in which contestants were told to Come On Down. Calm down. or a general positive. and may also mean to make it comprehensible. is requesting someone to repeat the statement. Come again? What flood are we talking about? Come off it Cease with an action or taking a position on a subject. Yeah. usually regarding a subject or a statement of position. so come on down! Cookie (person) American slang expression which has gone into general usage as a metaphor for a person. it's open season for everybody here apparently.Come again is usually a conversational idiom. in the same context as Cool. a hot temper. The word developed into general usage to include another. Who do you think you are. in his business. older European idiom. referring by implication to the opposite idiom. calm and collected performance. It also means someone who plays a tough situation well. meaning a person who was cool under pressure. The word always has some descriptor with it. . as the listener to a statement. Cool off. In its modern context. It also refers to a legal requirement in contracts and sales for a mandatory period for review and reconsideration before proceeding with the next phase of the process. You want us to relay the whole brick wall? Come off it! Come off your high horse Stop taking an exaggerated position of authority or superior social position. denoting the person and/or the situation don't deserve to be taken seriously. The idiom is usually from a person who is telling another to cease. Originally referred to females as cookies. which is a hybrid of both basic meanings. basically. Alan's actually a very tough cookie. acceptable.

Cup Of Joe: American mid 20th century slang expression. The government took a cutesy approach to the unemployment figures. It's usually used in context with trying to find out the facts of a situation. meaning pretending to be something nice. uncontrollable laughter. Cross your fingers. There can be a negative version of the statement. . The idiom is a warning in concept. I'm going to try to land this thing. Can literally mean hysterical. This is spilt milk. You crack me up. and was eventually eaten by a real wolf because nobody believed him when he yelled for help. You think I'm going to pay two million dollars for a box of matches? Cross Your Fingers: Superstitious idiom. because they didn't have that problem until they started checking out the company's finances. raising false alarms. and the public wasn't impressed.Crack Someone Up: To make someone laugh excessively. like trying to use milk after it's spilt and contaminated. when it means the idea of someone's statement is ridiculous. The fingers are literally crossed. cutesy (person. Cute. Have a cup of Joe and relax a bit. refers to coffee. when it isn't. folks. and irrecoverable. refers to crossing your fingers for luck with a problem. Cut the Ice Make the first move in a new situation. Cry Wolf: Refers to an old European fairy tale. in sign language. Cry Over Spilt Milk: The spilt milk analogy refers to a situation where the damage is done. we can't waste time and resources on that. Could be a case of curiosity killing the cat. where the lead character cried wolf. Don't cry wolf unless you've got a real problem. thing) Cute in these contexts is a sarcastic expression. we have to move on and stop dwelling on the past. Curiosity Killed The Cat: This idiom means that inquiring into things can be dangerous.

He cut the ice by sending them some flowers and chocolates. same methods. but is a possible threat. but he won strongly. and they got done like a dinner. Devil's Advocate: A person putting the negative position. The dark horse is the one that isn't expected to win. I'd say. and we don't get that result? Dog Days of Summer: The hot days of summer. This case is a dead ringer for the Smith Jones fraud case. Dead as a doornail: Literally. referring to an old expression regarding dogs in hot weather. as dead as something with no life in it by definition. stop avoiding issues. Let's cut to the chase. Let's not count our chickens here. or someone who was decisively defeated in some way. Done like a dinner Usually refers to sports. same spiel to the clients. panting and breathless. in terms of appearance. Dead Ringer: Exactly the same in every way. Cut to the Chase: Get to the facts. and leave out all these sidetracks and digressions. The whole subject was dead as a doornail by the time he'd finished speaking. Don't count your chickens before they hatch: The idiom means don't plan or take actions on the basis of things that haven't yet happened. The local baseball team played an away match last week. whether they agree with it or not. The dog days are here. what happens if this doesn't work. before we get confirmation. or get back on track. D Dark Horse: Derived from racing slang. This is usually done to ensure the negative aspects of a position are examined. Pegasus was the dark horse in the race. I guess I'll have to be the devil's advocate here. Can also be used to describe abstract situations. .

derived from the old horse trading tradition of checking a horse's teeth to check the horse's age and health before buying the horse. because we don't have to take any risks ourselves. irritating. Dropping Like Flies: Expression from humorous to exaggerated descriptor. That car was a real doozy. When used as an expression regarding something in progress. Down To The Wire: Till the last moment. The risk is that if that's a mistake. Drastic Times Call For Drastic Measures: The nature of a critical situation demands a response in keeping with the seriousness of the situation. scores are locked and it's anybody's game at this stage. usually negative. Refers to fatalities. The saying advises not getting too picky or critical about a gift of something either real or metaphorical. remarkable or unusually difficult. to the point he looks like a fish. because it costs nothing. Drive someone up the wall: Process of infuriating. meaning exceptional. the person loses everything. and the outcome is unpredictable. Putting all our eggs in one basket is a really bad idea. and have no other options. it means the matter is undecided. Doozy: American slang term. He drinks like a fish. I don't think we should look this particular gift horse in the mouth too closely.Don't Look A Gift Horse In The Mouth: This is an advisory idiom. or a situation which is affecting them like that. The idiom refers to the way someone behaves. all right. or driving someone else mad. This football game is going to be down to the wire. Don't Put All Your Eggs In One Basket: Traditional idiom. so they had to take drastic measures to make sure they had enough money. or the final action. Drink like a fish: Exaggerated statement to emphasize overdrinking. . but can be deliberate overstatement. These really were drastic circumstances for Sue and Betty. because we don't know what can go wrong. This particular client is driving me up the wall with all that extra paperwork. To over commit oneself to one thing or course of action. Didn't even get out of the car yard before it broke down. literally.

who is always sensitive or touchy. Earn while you learn! Become an apprentice. Idioms alphabetic list E-H E Early To Bed. or an edgy character. Earn While You Learn: Modern expression used to describe entry level paid training. ecclesiastical and academic philosophical expression literally meaning Such Is Man. He not only lives on the edge. early to rise. The seasonal ebb and flow of the business was an obvious factor in their stock orders. Edifice (personal): . Just throw the ball for the dog. And Wise: Traditional moral saying meaning good practices benefit your life. Of course. meaning very easy. It's easy peasy. practice attempt. Well. he didn't pay any attention to the professionals. situation. and it didn't really work. or a descriptor. rehearsal. get a life and a career! Easy Peasy: Rhyming English children's expression. Ecce Homo: Latin. Ecce Homo. and they're dropping like flies out there. We did a dry run on the new sales technique. I'm off to get some sleep. Early To Rise Makes A Man Healthy. the edge of danger. early to bed. Wealthy. Edge. Edgy: The expressions are part of a descriptor of a person. get paid while you're learning the trade.They tried the salad dressing. used in context with human conditions or individual character. using the tides ebb and flow as the analogy. Ebb and Flow: Metaphor for a cycle of events. Dry Run: Test. I've got a busy day tomorrow. referring to either a state of risk. he's a naturally edgy person.

because there are a lot of relevant facts missing in this report. So when he started swearing like a trooper. the whole edifice of the sophisticated person came crashing down. Elephant's Memory (person): Person whose memory of events is exceptional. Eke Out: Old usage. Eighty Eight: Jazz slang for a full size piano. Eighty Six: To Eighty Six something is to get rid of it. so eighty six the thing. Talk about an elephant's memory. I'd say. that's it. We'll just have to eke out the money we have until the big money comes in. lose it deliberately. This is an obvious edit of the situation. Right. it means the show's over. Emissary (sarcastic): Sarcastic title given to a person bringing information from another source. The looking up and down is considered sexist in some contexts. We can't take it with us. Liberace on the eighty eight is an expression used to describe a showy but good pianist putting on a big show. The implication is that not all facts are being revealed. meaning to use your resources sparingly under difficult conditions. go home. Edit (descriptor): A selective use of materials or information. Elvis has left the building. When used in another context. The elevator stare he gave her wasn't much appreciated.A fa�ade maintained by a person as a public image. Elvis has left the building: Refers to the fans staying behind in a building to get Elvis Presley's autograph. folks. . he remembers things I said twenty years ago. the performers have gone. or in some cases exceptionally annoying. and still takes them personally. we're closing. Elevator stare: To look someone up and down.

Yeah. this expression means habitually mistaken ways of doing things. explaining why all our fruit was rotten. or unrealistic. This audit report should do as an equalizer. Esper: Person with extra sensory perception. meaning emotionally charged music. lots of teenage angst. refers (usually humorously) to a person who is being described as a risk to the nation. She's just plain exception. Equalizer: American slang term. I had a series of romantic episodes. Episode. all different. Emo: Modern music form. but can also be used as a sarcastic statement. I should change my errant ways and buy anything they think I should buy. It's very emo material. because they apparently know more about what I like than I do. Episodic (personal related events): This is an idiom which sets a scene as a chapter in someone's life. According to this brochure. Ethereal Person: Person who appears unreal in some way. Enough Is Enough: Statement is made in context. someone who can sense things without you even telling her there's a problem. they can't bully the figures. or some method of getting on equal terms with a stronger opponent. but all special. originally meaning gun. Now means a weapon. Exactly how long are we going to just sit here asking for an answer and not getting one? Enough is enough! Enemy Of The State: Derived from totalitarian propaganda usage. denoting an end to an issue is required. well. Errant ways: Literally.We received an emissary from the green grocer. the chef is more or less considered to be an enemy of the state. . a real esper.

Everything But The Kitchen Sink: All possible efforts have been made. Ever (descriptor): Common in many languages. ethnic cleansing of everyone who disagrees with you? Even Stevens: Rhyming children's expression. OK. but they're really ethereal people. The kitten and the puppy picture told a story worth telling. meaning level in a game or personal affair. The ever-omniscient local council has sent us a letter saying the garbage will be picked up on Wednesday instead of Thursday. Usage has extended to create other contexts describing actions in terms of getting rid of people. Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining: All bad things have an element of good in them. We've thrown everything but the kitchen sink at this problem. I'll have to do without seeing that guy's face ever again. and we're Even Stevens. Exception Proves The Rule: . like they come from some other reality. So what's this. Every Picture Tells A Story: Relates to the content of images. every resource used. Ethnic Cleansing: Genocide committed against a specific group of people. Every Dog Has His Day: Even the lowliest of people will have a moment of glory. the use of the word Ever creates an idiom automatically. when they've been doing it on Thursday for years. So George finally got that promotion! Every dog has his day. you give me that marble. when used in context with another descriptor. providing subjective information and creating a scene for extrapolating a story.I know artists are supposed to be a bit strange. Every cloud does have a silver lining.

Excuse language: Being polite before or after using a swear word or obscenity or something which could be interpreted as obscene. indicating the fault finding is ignoring the positives. ornate. OK. Give the new starter a fair go. so this duck flies north for the winter. because the example is obviously unusual. The exception proves the rule. do you have the time? So I shouldn't ask you the time? Well excuse me! F Fair go: Australian expression meaning natural justice. a trash can wearing a silly hat. Fault Finding (person. Excuse me. It's just fantastic plastic. it's used as a descriptor in a negative sense. mission): An exercise in finding mistakes and flaws. That meaning has now been inverted in American usage to mean the exact opposite. the whole production number. so the fact it's an exception to the norm proves the norm is the usual event. it was quite a fandango. Oh. indicating annoyance sarcastically. performance or action. Fathom (verb): A fathom is a nautical measure of depth. this isn't that easy to learn. Often said as a joke. Fantastic Plastic: 1960s expression. or has another interpretation. . Some use of the expression is facetious.A situation where a common phenomenon doesn't happen. To Fathom something means to attempt to find the depth of a statement or person. Fandango (descriptor): The expression means an overdone. I don't know quite how to fathom the way she reacted to my question. I was reading about the Wall Street (excuse language) problems yesterday. meaning artificial fantasy. directors making press statements. yeah. in conversation. and all the others fly south. usually in a negative or sarcastic sense. Excuse me: The original meaning of Excuse Me was to indicate your intention to be polite when addressing someone. As an idiom.

I think we'll file that under miscellaneous. File Under Miscellaneous: Extra or uncategorized information. either positive or negative in context. O fey person. Fear And Loathing: Media expression meaning negative public interest or professional sentiment. don't quite know what to do with it. unrestricted. The novel was just about all filler material. meaning mystic person.He's a fault finding sort of person on a fault finding mission. prose. We're an electrical wholesaler. unnecessary material in music. Often means people acting as they please in relation to a topic or an issue. The minute the hors d'oeuvres were served. Feast Your Eyes: To have a good look at something. Feast your eyes on this camel. Faux Pas: French expression meaning social blunder. So tell me. now extended to describing human eating habits. there was a feeding frenzy. Fear and loathing is driving the markets following the latest revelations of insider trading. with girl meets boy as the story. Filler Material: Extra. or stock market actions. The press had a field day with the scandal. Fey (person): Scottish expression. and you're telling us where we can get free ducks. used to make up volume. such as it was. or a message from beyond the grave? Field Day: A day out in the open. is this a phone bill. and he won't pay any attention to anything that's going right. Wearing live rabbits instead of clothes to the Academy Awards was considered rather a faux pas. or products. Feeding Frenzy: Derived from sharks feeding behavior. .

Our fine feathered friend here apparently thinks we're made of money. 2. Grilled cardboard. unchanging. Fine Feathered Friend: Sarcastic expression referring derisively to a person as wearing the plumage of a bird. You're obviously finding your feet. people just don't work like that any more. Need I say their enthusiasm was flagging after 20 miles solid hiking I'd like to flag something for your consideration. method): French expression. etc. Flagging spirits or situation. 2. like an old society dress ornament. Finger lickin' good: American expression made famous by Kentucky Fried Chicken. You're too fixed in your ways. impermanent. and/or the character of a person's actions. meaning a deteriorating process. sometimes sarcastic. drawing attention to it. The obvious suggestion from these figures is that someone has their fingers in the till. now in common usage meaning tasty. . used to describe smooth handling of a situation. Flagging something. It showed a lot of finesse on Barry's part to talk them into that wholesale deal. different meanings: 1. Flagging: Flagging has two quite unrelated. the till. Flash In The Pan: Brief conspicuous event. temporary fame.Finding Your Feet: To gain confidence in what you're doing. Finesse (character. 1. talk about finger lickin' good� Fingers In (the pie. Fixed In Your Ways: A person with set habits. that's a good job you're doing there.): To have one's fingers in something means to be improperly involved in obtaining money or serving one's own interests.

Flushed with success. but I think we can put water in glasses. It was flesh and blood against a natural disaster. After all. Flea Market: A market where you can buy goods of any kind. 3. attention getting. or overusing a metaphor. if the context refers to inferior products still flogging that rubbish? Flogging (a subject. Living things One's own family Comparison in relation to circumstances Flesh and blood will only tolerate so much. The local flea market will have those things. a cousin is our own flesh and blood. Foam at the Mouth: . Flesh and Blood: Refers to several separate idioms: 1. too. This may be just a flight of fancy. I think three hours flogging a metaphor about goldfish is enough. meaning too conspicuous. Gerry wears very flashy clothing. just a flash in the pan. Flogging (sales): Old English slang. 2. Flight Of Fancy: Imaginative exercise in logic or thinking. for sure. Flashy: Negative idiom. Flushed With Success: In a mental state where previous success has led to the subsequent action. metaphor): Overdoing your subject. they went to the pub to celebrate. 3. can be a negative descriptor. I think it's actually pretty tasteless. really. 2.They were one hit wonders. and cheaper. 1. meaning selling something.

. Wow. he's never had an idea of his own. Foot In Mouth: To make a self defeating statement. Food For Thought: Common literary and vernacular idiom referring to information which will require some further consideration. Fools' Gold: Iron sulphate. Follower (derogatory): As a generic term. there are the fools rushing in. and implying the information is for animals. Also used as descriptor for state of mind. I'd say it was fool's gold. He's just a follower. cave in on an issue. like an accordion. The idea of food for thought comes with a few dietary considerations. refers to ferocious dogs foaming at the mouth. nobody noticed. refers to a mineral which resembles gold. If he ever managed to hold a conversation without putting his foot in his mouth. If you think genuine recycled nasal hair is a commercial proposition.): To fold means to give up a position. Fold (like in poker. On the phone. etc. Reality is just fodder for uneducated people. believing everything they hear. no rules. It was a real free for all at the post Christmas sales. Free For All: No holds barred. never even bothered to argue. not checking their facts. a follower is distinguished in a denigrating sense from a leader. Yep. he was furious! I could hear him foam at the mouth! Fodder (negative context): The term refers to information as stock feed. did they fold on that issue fast. Used to describe false value given to a subject.Angry expression. Fools Rush In Where Angels Fear To Tread: Fools take risks where wiser people know better. denigrating its content.

come on don't be such a fuddy-duddy. From Rags To Riches: A move from poverty to wealth. but your new friend would be my definition of a fruitcake. derived from movie of the same name. Sorry to say this. Full Monty: British expression. permanently. often as a description of someone's life story. but now means making a full effort to go through the entire process.Free Country: The idiom refers to personal liberty. just wait until I emigrate. obsolescent. and a person's right to do what they wish. nutcase. and I can wear this tie! Free Rein: Without restrictions. He was given free rein to deal with the mess. Fuddy-duddy: Old. out of date. from dirt poor to global stardom. with implications of geriatric senility. This is a real rags to riches story. Oh. Literally translates as fully naked. unfettered. they haven't done things like that in accountancy since they built the Pyramids. Frozen Out: To be deliberately excluded from a group or society. French Kiss: Tongue kissing. if you really want to go the Full Monty on this. must have been a French kiss and their tongues got tangled up. They got so tired of the constant backstabbing that Bruce was frozen out of the group. Funny Farm: . They were there for an hour. Fruitcake (person): American slang. It's a free country. at least. Well. Madman.

my shopping is genetic. he said I should pay for the whole dinner! Gassing On: Talking too much. insignificant person. I'm descended from a grocer. a real actress. Get Down to Brass Tacks: Start addressing the real issues. or would you like to continue your anecdote about your date with Harry here? G Gasp (sarcastic): When used as part of a sentence. or person. heritage. Look. or is it just a hobby? Geek: Trivial. . Gawk: Look ignorantly at something. I'm glad to know we have things like you swimming around in our gene pool. that's someone I'd have to describe as a geek. You guys keep gassing on. Used as a compliment or confirmation of value. there'll be dinosaurs complaining about the noise. not a store dummy. Genetic (subject. Do you always gawk like that at well dressed women. it indicates total lack of surprise. descriptor of character): Part of a person's character and emotional makeup. Usually a comment. Should we ring the funny farm now.Slang expression for psychiatric institution for people with mental health problems. (gasp). Frankly. Gene pool (personal): Referring to ancestry. I'm convinced she's the genuine article. Genuine Article: The real thing. no real presence. Then.

Now don't get sarky about it you lot. dwelling on it. often refers to a difficult and lengthy learning process in the course of doing something. I know Jack will get fired up by this news. Getting An Education: Learning through experience. Wouldn't you say that claiming your washing machines cure acne is gilding the lily just a bit? Give The Slip: Evade someone or something. they're nothing like our previous information.Getting down to brass tacks. . Give them the slip. the guy has webbed feet. We're really getting an education doing these surveys. Get Your Walking Papers: Termination of employment. Get Up On The Wrong Side Of The Bed: Start the day in a bad mood. Get Sarky: Get sarcastic. Suggests falsification of appearances. Gild The Lily: To enhance something which is already beautiful unnecessarily. become obviously derisive. he's been in a nasty mood all day. Must have got out of bed on the wrong side. by a situation or statement. positively or negatively. what on Earth are we going to do with a warehouse full of bathroom fittings? Get Over It: Used to tell someone to move on from an event or situation after it's happened. or have a bad day. for your own sake. or we'll be taking a hike ourselves. we'll have dinner by ourselves. Get Fired Up: Get emotionally motivated. Get over it. often sarcastic. You'll make it worse. So give them their walking papers.

referring to male dominated management and the inability of females to get promotions to senior positions. Seems our opposition has a glass jaw on financial reports. I know I've got your attention when I see that glazed look on your faces. Go Bananas Refers to acting like an ape. I like to go bush. Glazed Look: Describes someone looking like a museum specimen under glass. taking the blame. a person who is taking the blame. your expression indicating a negative reaction. That thing about wage cuts went down like a lead balloon with the staff. You're being a goat in more ways than one you know. Goat (person): Short for scapegoat. to get away from society. but a glorified office boy does. I say we go for broke. meaning to go crazy. or looking as if you've been glazed over. Go For Broke: American gambling expression. Go Gaga: . just to be out of the rat race. Don't just go bananas on us. to go all out and risk everything. Go Down Like A Lead Balloon: To do something which gets nowhere with an audience. Every once in a while. really put everything we have into this job. Another case of the Glass Ceiling. but also refers to vulnerabilities of a person on certain issues.Glass Ceiling: Feminist expression. get it sorted out! Go Bush Australian Aboriginal expression. where a woman with a doctorate doesn't get a management position. Can also mean a person acting foolishly or stubbornly. but not admitting you were wrong. Glass Jaw Literally someone who can't take a punch.

That's the way these things are done. and did it for no reward. Good Samaritan: Biblical reference to the Samaritan who assisted his injured enemy when no one else did. meaning to wander with no identified destination. because there's no real choice. This is our version of the Goose That Laid The Golden Egg. Go Nuts: This expression originally meant to go mad. usually beyond what is strictly required. . Refers to an old circus act where animals were literally required to jump through hoops. and we have to go through the hoops. We have to go out on a limb. usually knowing the risk. Go Out On A Limb: Take a risk. I really felt I should help. and talked about synergies. Honestly. Where do we put it? Goose That Laid The Golden Egg: A person who is perhaps annoying. Go Through The Hoops: Go through whatever has to be done. but has developed to mean do whatever you can. where killing the goose was the terrible mistake. I wasn't trying to be a Good Samaritan. Expression is derived from the children's fairy tale of the same name.American expression. buying that camel. Go nuts. it's been a real help. and we're not going to kill it. to become incomprehensible. and insane. and they just went gaga. You really are a goose. but also a valuable source of things. Goose (person): Fool. Go The Extra Mile/Yard: Making an extra effort. stupid person. Go Walkabout: Australian Aboriginal expression. let's see what you can do. We tried telling management about the plumbing. I really appreciate your going the extra mile for us.

or unacceptable. but I'm learning a lot about the business. So I took a day off and you took a day off� Great minds think alike� so who's actually at work at the moment? Green Room: Room where people are stationed prior to going on air in broadcasting. I'm even thinking of being awake later this afternoon. Well. conversational quip): . Guesstimate Compound word which as an idiom means the person making the guesstimate isn't claiming accuracy. Thousands of people in malls and coffee shops. Grazing (people) 1980s expression referring to people eating together in restaurants. Show Mr. get those things on the database. it evolved to include meaning squalid. Habit Forming (joke. Grind (routine): The grind refers to the wear and tear of daily work.Before you go walkabout. That is absolutely gross. Great Minds Think Alike: Usually a sarcastic reference to two or more people having the same idea. That place was so grotty you wouldn't let a dog in there. The late night and early morning shift when most people are asleep. but making a rough quantification. I mean it really grosses me out! Grotty: English expression from Liverpool in the 1960s. The expression means that something is disgusting. back to the grind. Originally meaning grotesque. It's a graveyard shift job. dirty. Smith to the Green Room and give him a call 5 minutes before he goes on air. Gross (thing or person): American slang term with multiple uses as an adjective and a verb. Graveyard Shift: Derived from broadcasting slang. grazing.

with some very handy people available to us in a very handy situation. this would have to be one of the greatest. . in case history misses seeing you. It was pretty half witted. We got lucky. having fun is habit forming. mate. uncompromising position on a subject or issue. He's an absolute hardliner. have you? Hard lines. good to have available.Refers to addiction to something. Hardliner: A person or ideology which takes an inflexible. Well. I'll go get Rembrandt. pathos. getting our marketing ready. always takes the tough line on these issues. situation): Useful. but we did get something out of the deal. Half Ass: Denigrates idiomatically a half formed idea. Of all the half ass ideas anyone's ever had. action or concept. We're now doing the hard yards. drawing a plan without even doing a survey. Hangdog (look. Hard Lines: Old English expression. Handy (person. Hardline. related to at least having something. Lost your watch. that hangdog look of yours. it's half a loaf. Stick around. thing. I find. Yeah. the hard work required to make progress to a goal. Half Witted: Traditional denigration of someone's thinking. Oh. meaning tough luck. Half A Loaf Is Better Than None: Traditional expression. and made a lot of money. facial expression): Pitiful look. Hard Yards: American and general football expression.

Heating up (situation): Escalation of events where increased action is occurring. he's here to do the bosses' work for them. music): Derived from criminal slang. crashing directly into a situation. His problem is that he does everything head on. In music refers to non commercial. Hat Trick: Do something three times consecutively. Heedless (person): . We can actually find our clients on the database. additional energy in the situation. don't get too casual. Haste Makes Waste: Doing things too quickly causes mistakes. Derived from scoring three times in a sport. either positive or negative. direct opposition. extreme music. This is a very heavy person we're dealing with here. Head Over Heels: Disoriented. and never maneuvers around situations. Head On: Confrontational. They were so obviously head over heels in love the other people in the room left them in peace. Heavy (person. Haste does make waste. when referring to a person or case refers to a dangerous person or set of circumstances. You did all of that in record time.Hatchet Man: Person hired to do the dirty work. He's done it. The guy's a hatchet man. situation. Things are now heating up. Always a derogatory expression. The new secretary is heaven sent. now. Suggests friction. in terms of the publicity and the reaction to it. and means the effort is wasted. and got it all wrong. three in a row. a hat trick Heaven Sent: An unexpected but welcome event. wrong way up. Also refers to people in industry with a lot of influence.

do the reading required. Hit The Hay: To go to bed. High fives all round. The shoppers showed a real herd mentality with that stampede when the doors opened for the annual sale. High Five: Basketball gesture. but living well. where a hidden agenda is a character reference to a person acting in a way which isn't understood. though. I'd say heedless is a good description of someone who simply will not listen to facts. so I think we should at least consider some sort of hidden agenda. however ridiculous or stupid. Hidden Agenda (character): The idiom is one of suspicion. High on the Hog: The idiom refers to living in a state of excess. they're happy about that result. Herd Mentality (human): Derogatory reference to the tendency of people to do what everyone else does. I'll see you later. Old expression dating back to when people slept on straw beds. I really have to hit the hay.A person who won't take advice or act on it. We're not getting any answers from the contractors. I'm going to be busy tomorrow. Hell in a Handbasket: American expression referring to something in a state of rapid transition to a very bad state. They're living high on the hog now. and they're still doing the same old things. Yeah. don't know if they can keep it up. The print media is going to hell in a handbasket. Hit The Books: Start studying. Hit The Nail on the Head: Describe or define something exactly. . accurate assessment. Now a common expression. slapping hands together over the head in congratulation for an achievement. and continues on an unwise course of action or thought. Time to hit the books and get the notes prepared. and take precautions.

lacking substance. exactly right. I didn't even recognize her at first. Hocus pocus. Suggests an inflated balloon. The sack refers to a hammock or portable military or camping bedding. She was really looking hot. Hocus Pocus: Idiom refers to bogus trickery. or in a state of emotional excitement. tap dancer. and acts before he thinks. staged magic acts. we're up early tomorrow. ill considered. Hope Springs Eternal: Traditional expression. the basic result is we still don't have a new airport. Time to hit the sack. Hotheaded: Rash. Hot (person): Reference to a sexually attractive person. best in the business. done without thought. Hot Air: Meaningless and/or false talk. So after ten years of hot air. Refers to a person as a character reference. you don't know the rest of the story. don't take an action. That guy is naturally hotheaded. Yeah. I think all this stuff about aliens with mother ships just proves hope springs eternal. and you get a new bank account? Hold Your Horses: Don't do something. kids.That really hit the nail on the head. however you do it. Just hold your horses. Hot Tempered: . Hit The Sack: Go to sleep. Hoofer: Vaudeville expression referring to a dancer. sure. She was a really famous 40s hoofer. meaning there's always some hope. yet.

a savant. some added benefit. as well as the new contract. blood runs cold): Situation causes fear and apprehension. because he took out that engine. they paid me my back royalties. There's more hype than actual product here. He's a very hot tempered person. My blood ran cold when I realized what the Wall Street crash meant to so many people. overstatement of the virtues of a product. Ides Of March: Refers to the assassination of Julius Caesar. You want to start a business. I'd approach him differently. and you somehow managed to blow up the restaurant? Talk about idle hands doing the devil's work! . Idle Hands Do The Devil's Work: People with nothing to do get into trouble because of that inactivity. Usually refers to advertising. meaning exaggeration. yet. who doesn't necessarily understand his skills. fine. acting at great speed with enthusiasm. Now applies to a dangerous time. if I were you. As icing on the cake. who was warned about the time of the Ides Of March by a soothsayer. lots of enthusiasm and energy. I think our new mechanic is an idiot savant. Hyper: A person said to be hyper is in a state of extreme excitement. and the thing's not even on the market. Hype: Derived from hyperbole. which we hadn't noticed until he did that. Susan is naturally a hyper sort of person.Person likely to react aggressively due to a bad temper. but she just doesn't stop. So you were just loafing around. but beware of the Ides Of March! Idiot Savant: A person with a talent which benefits others. and we found that the battery was leaking. I Ice in the blood (blood turned to ice. Icing On The Cake: An addition to a good thing. energized.

Old meaning: He was a troublesome. playful. where the premise of If creates the logic. Often used as a satiric expression. either romantically. This ill wind just blew us in a contract from the customers of our recently defunct competitors. impish. all right. It means to go straight into the middle of the action in a situation. Ill Wind: The old saying was It's an ill wind which blows no good.Then situation: if the premise holds true. fellow. the logic is right.If It's Not One Thing. The meaning is more associated with a person who is removed from the norms of the human world. innocent. Ignorance Is Bliss: Traditional saying meaning there are some things people are happier not to know.Then: This is a type of logic. Ignorance was bliss. it's another! If . child of nature. I had no idea we were paying for that until now. opportunistically or adventurously. but not appreciated. . Can be positive or negative. Current meaning: Impish behavior maybe. Illuminati: Supposed elite group of people and vested interests with privileged knowledge not available to anyone outside the Illuminati. I don't know how many ing�nues are professional embezzlers. It's an If . but the rhyming slang effect is also obvious. which has given the word its status as an idiom. as well as the other meanings. Now more usually a contraction to the Ill wind form. Impish (person): Old expression meaning mischievous. He's one of the Illuminati who approved that budget that sent the city broke last year. meaning there's always some benefit to someone in any situation. Now we've got rats. Ing�nue (person): French word meaning na�ve. after getting rid of the mice? If it's not one thing. It's Another: Fatalistic but complaining expression. depending on circumstances and the age of the reference. expecting trouble from any source. In Like Flynn: The expression is believed to refer to actor Errol Flynn. tricky. After Voltaire's book of the same name.

Veritas! 01489328228313 FORID:10 Business Letters Personal Letters Resumes CVs and more . Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall: Traditional saying. Inner Child: Spiritual and philosophical concept of the inner innocence and child like needs of people. Into each life some rain must fall. Truth. Often used to describe conversation and thinking while drinking. You and your Shiraz agree with me about this song. Can be used in multiple contexts and senses. Refers to the emotions and the situations created in a previously stated scenario. he smashed a glass against the kitchen sink and walked out. when in the heat of the moment. Veritas: Ancient Latin saying meaning literally In wine. Innocent until proven guilty: Principle of justice. So you didn't win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Kitchen Hand. They argued until late in the night. meaning that in every life is some sadness. and the deal is in the bag. What happened to 'Innocent until proven guilty?' I wasn't even in the state when that happened! In The Bag: Certain of success. at this point.When he saw that chance to make some money. In vino. finally? In vino. My inner child tells me that the whole deal stinks. In The Buff: From previous English expression buff naked. used idiomatically as a reference to any suggestion of doing something wrong. he was in like Flynn. It's all been done. Are you saying that seeing you in the buff hasn't been attracting tourists? In The Heat Of The Moment: This is a conditional idiom.

It was pretty half witted. H to T A R B S C T D E F G H I J U V W X Y Z K L M N O P Q Examples of Idioms English Grammar and Examples Idioms Jargon Body language English Grammar Semantics Syntax in writing Connotative Good customer service Probability Synesthesia Understatement Homographs Hyperbole Idioms Idioms Onomatopoeia Metaphor Puns Sarcasm Simile Irony Well. it's half a loaf. conversational quip): Refers to addiction to something. Yeah. thing. Half Witted: Traditional denigration of someone's thinking. situation): . this would have to be one of the greatest. but we did get something out of the deal. Handy (person. Of all the half ass ideas anyone's ever had. Half A Loaf Is Better Than None: Traditional expression. having fun is habit forming.exampleso Questions        Business Letters Love Letters Personal Letters Language MySQL Science Math H Habit Forming (joke. Half Ass: Denigrates idiomatically a half formed idea. drawing a plan without even doing a survey.    UTF-8 Resumes Cover Letters Search Site CVs Interview w w w . related to at least having something. action or concept. I find.

facial expression): Pitiful look. He's done it. Hardliner: A person or ideology which takes an inflexible. three in a row. Haste does make waste. I'll go get Rembrandt. Hard Yards: American and general football expression. have you? Hard lines. uncompromising position on a subject or issue. with some very handy people available to us in a very handy situation. Hangdog (look. that hangdog look of yours. getting our marketing ready. and made a lot of money. the hard work required to make progress to a goal. Oh. and got it all wrong. Hardline. mate. Hatchet Man: Person hired to do the dirty work. pathos. Haste Makes Waste: Doing things too quickly causes mistakes. Always a derogatory expression. a hat trick Full list of English Grammar . We got lucky. always takes the tough line on these issues. meaning tough luck. he's here to do the bosses' work for them. Lost your watch. Hat Trick: Do something three times consecutively. in case history misses seeing you. good to have available.Haiku Jargon Idioms Verbal Irony Alliteration Satire Paradox Useful. Derived from scoring three times in a sport. We're now doing the hard yards. The guy's a hatchet man. Stick around. He's an absolute hardliner. You did all of that in record time. Hard Lines: Old English expression. and means the effort is wasted.

Heavy (person. and they're still doing the same old things. now. don't get too casual. . and never maneuvers around situations. We can actually find our clients on the database. Head On: Confrontational. This is a very heavy person we're dealing with here. extreme music. In music refers to non commercial. Things are now heating up. His problem is that he does everything head on. crashing directly into a situation. situation. music): Derived from criminal slang. and continues on an unwise course of action or thought. in terms of the publicity and the reaction to it. Also refers to people in industry with a lot of influence. Yeah. either positive or negative.Heaven Sent: An unexpected but welcome event. Suggests friction. The print media is going to hell in a handbasket. wrong way up. Head Over Heels: Disoriented. The new secretary is heaven sent. when referring to a person or case refers to a dangerous person or set of circumstances. Hell in a Handbasket: American expression referring to something in a state of rapid transition to a very bad state. Heating up (situation): Escalation of events where increased action is occurring. direct opposition. I'd say heedless is a good description of someone who simply will not listen to facts. Heedless (person): A person who won't take advice or act on it. They were so obviously head over heels in love the other people in the room left them in peace. additional energy in the situation.

and take precautions. I'll see you later. accurate assessment. but living well. exactly right. Hit The Hay: To go to bed. High fives all round.Herd Mentality (human): Derogatory reference to the tendency of people to do what everyone else does. High Five: Basketball gesture. The shoppers showed a real herd mentality with that stampede when the doors opened for the annual sale. though. Hit The Books: Start studying. That really hit the nail on the head. Now a common expression. however ridiculous or stupid. I really have to hit the hay. Hidden Agenda (character): The idiom is one of suspicion. don't know if they can keep it up. do the reading required. They're living high on the hog now. where a hidden agenda is a character reference to a person acting in a way which isn't understood. Hit The Sack: Go to sleep. Old expression dating back to when people slept on straw beds. The sack refers to a hammock or portable military or camping . slapping hands together over the head in congratulation for an achievement. so I think we should at least consider some sort of hidden agenda. they're happy about that result. We're not getting any answers from the contractors. Time to hit the books and get the notes prepared. I'm going to be busy tomorrow. Hit The Nail on the Head: Describe or define something exactly. High on the Hog: The idiom refers to living in a state of excess.

kids. yet. Yeah. Hot (person): Reference to a sexually attractive person. She was really looking hot. Refers to a person as a character reference. Hocus pocus. the basic result is we still don't have a new airport. done without thought. we're up early tomorrow. I didn't even recognize her at first. however you do it. Hope Springs Eternal: Traditional expression. lacking substance. meaning there's always some hope. Hot Tempered: . ill considered. staged magic acts. and acts before he thinks. Just hold your horses. So after ten years of hot air. Time to hit the sack. best in the business. don't take an action. or in a state of emotional excitement. you don't know the rest of the story. Hoofer: Vaudeville expression referring to a dancer. I think all this stuff about aliens with mother ships just proves hope springs eternal. Hot Air: Meaningless and/or false talk. sure.bedding. She was a really famous 40s hoofer. Hocus Pocus: Idiom refers to bogus trickery. tap dancer. That guy is naturally hotheaded. Suggests an inflated balloon. Hotheaded: Rash. and you get a new bank account? Hold Your Horses: Don't do something.

He's a very hot tempered person. overstatement of the virtues of a product. who was warned about the time of the Ides Of March by a soothsayer. lots of enthusiasm and energy. You want to start a business. As icing on the cake. acting at great speed with enthusiasm. but beware of the Ides Of March! Idiot Savant: A person with a talent which benefits others. There's more hype than actual product here. fine. . and the thing's not even on the market. energized. blood runs cold): Situation causes fear and apprehension. they paid me my back royalties. as well as the new contract. Icing On The Cake: An addition to a good thing. a savant. Ides Of March: Refers to the assassination of Julius Caesar. Usually refers to advertising. Hype: Derived from hyperbole. I think our new mechanic is an idiot savant. meaning exaggeration. Hyper: A person said to be hyper is in a state of extreme excitement. Susan is naturally a hyper sort of person. and we found that the battery was leaking. I'd approach him differently. but she just doesn't stop. because he took out that engine. Now applies to a dangerous time. I Ice in the blood (blood turned to ice. which we hadn't noticed until he did that. My blood ran cold when I realized what the Wall Street crash meant to so many people. if I were you. yet. who doesn't necessarily understand his skills. some added benefit.Person likely to react aggressively due to a bad temper.

impish. playful. Can be positive or negative. fellow. the logic is right. Ill Wind: The old saying was It's an ill wind which blows no good. after getting rid of the mice? If it's not one thing. Ignorance Is Bliss: Traditional saying meaning there are some things people are happier not to know. . it's another! If . Current meaning: Impish behavior maybe. where the premise of If creates the logic. Impish (person): Old expression meaning mischievous.Idle Hands Do The Devil's Work: People with nothing to do get into trouble because of that inactivity. but not appreciated. meaning there's always some benefit to someone in any situation. He's one of the Illuminati who approved that budget that sent the city broke last year. all right. Ignorance was bliss. Now we've got rats. Illuminati: Supposed elite group of people and vested interests with privileged knowledge not available to anyone outside the Illuminati. This ill wind just blew us in a contract from the customers of our recently defunct competitors. I had no idea we were paying for that until now.Then: This is a type of logic. Now more usually a contraction to the Ill wind form.Then situation: if the premise holds true. tricky. depending on circumstances and the age of the reference. Old meaning: He was a troublesome. Often used as a satiric expression. It's Another: Fatalistic but complaining expression. So you were just loafing around. expecting trouble from any source. and you somehow managed to blow up the restaurant? Talk about idle hands doing the devil's work! If It's Not One Thing. It's an If .

and the deal is in the bag. The meaning is more associated with a person who is removed from the norms of the human world. In The Buff: From previous English expression buff naked. In Like Flynn: The expression is believed to refer to actor Errol Flynn. as well as the other meanings. Innocent until proven guilty: Principle of justice. After Voltaire's book of the same name. I don't know how many ing�nues are professional embezzlers. used idiomatically as a reference to any suggestion of doing something wrong. It means to go straight into the middle of the action in a situation. which has given the word its status as an idiom. What happened to 'Innocent until proven guilty?' I wasn't even in the state when that happened! In The Bag: Certain of success. he smashed . opportunistically or adventurously. when in the heat of the moment. Refers to the emotions and the situations created in a previously stated scenario. My inner child tells me that the whole deal stinks. he was in like Flynn. either romantically. They argued until late in the night. at this point. When he saw that chance to make some money.Ing�nue (person): French word meaning na�ve. It's all been done. but the rhyming slang effect is also obvious. Can be used in multiple contexts and senses. Inner Child: Spiritual and philosophical concept of the inner innocence and child like needs of people. Are you saying that seeing you in the buff hasn't been attracting tourists? In The Heat Of The Moment: This is a conditional idiom. innocent. child of nature.

it's now an idiomatic expression referring to certainty. George was very in your face about the job. Iron clad guarantee: Originally an advertising expression. It Takes Two To Tango: A tango is a dance by two people. Veritas! In Your Face: American expression. Truth. meaning confrontational either a person or a situation. in context. meaning that in every life is some sadness. Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall: Traditional saying. In vino. You and your Shiraz agree with me about this song. I can give you an iron clad guarantee I'll take you to court. So you didn't win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Kitchen Hand. Itchy fingers: Urge to act. so ipso facto. I didn't spill the coffee. I wasn't here. wait until you're told to start moving. The iron entered his soul when he realized he had no support for his statement. wasn't he? Ipso facto: Latin and legal expression. Veritas: Ancient Latin saying meaning literally In wine. referring to an actual guarantee of a refund. Often used to describe conversation and thinking while drinking. usually means unwisely. Don't get itchy fingers. if that helps. Iron enters the soul: Refers to a situation where you're spiritually toughened by the circumstances.a glass against the kitchen sink and walked out. finally? In vino. Idiom refers to the need for a partner or . meaning proven by the facts. Into each life some rain must fall.

How much a night? You're joshing me. In this situation. being jailed. Harvard. . all right. Small world. and she shows up at my party! Its Anyone's Guess: Unpredictable situation. Joshing Me: Joshing was the old word for joking. surely. Job's Comforters: From the Biblical tale of Job's sufferings. Cornell. J Jaywalk: American expression for method of illegally crossing the street. changing position without anyone's consent. where his comforters brought him nothing but despair and more grief.another party in a situation. You need each other. and there are too many variables for my taste. Dartmouth. These accountants are starting to sound like Job's comforters. it's anyone's guess when it will happen. They're not an Ivy League College. Pennsylvania. This is ideological jaywalking. It does take two to tango. Columbia. Jug. usually after a long time or distance of separation. Jugged: American expression for jail. Princeton and Yale. haven't seen her for ages. Ivy League: American idiom for the colleges Brown. It's A Small World: Idiom is used when encountering someone or something again. The idiom implies lack of information or basis for assessment. but UCLA is a great place.

He got jugged for a second offense. Jugular (to go for, context): The jugular is a common metaphor for a fatal blow. To go for the throat, strike at the jugular, means to go for the kill. He went straight for the jugular with that remark, and they backed off. Jump (contexts) The word jump sets up multiple idioms. It commonly means to move and take the initiative abruptly, creating another situation, with the following words as qualifiers of the idiom. To get the jump on someone means to have the initial move, therefore the advantage. It often means to escape. To jump bail means to run away from the conditions of bail. You look like you're ready to jump ship. I know you, you'll jump when you're good and ready. Jump The Gun: Preemptive move, to do something before the proper time. Don't jump the gun, we're going to be ready next week. Jupiter, Jovian, Jupiter Pluvius: Old usage, but common in literature. Jupiter was the senior Roman god, and the idiom came from the Latin as an alternative word for God in European usage among educated people. Jupiter Pluvius was a metaphor for rain, which was the province of Jupiter in Roman mythology. By Jupiter, this is a filthy old scow of a ship! Jupiter Pluvius appears to be unusually prevalent in these seasons. K Karma (karmic law): Hindu law of accumulated cosmic justice, good causing good, bad causing bad. In Western idioms used as a reference to a collection of circumstances causing a fate. Sell that car to anyone, and your Karma will go through the floor. Keep An Eye On: Warning idiom, meaning to monitor the subject. We'll have to keep an eye on these sales figures so we know we're getting our

money's worth. Keep body and soul together: Old expression, pre 20th century, referring to the need to meet material needs. The reference to soul infers the person will die. To keep body and soul together, they had to work even harder. Keep your chin up: Old saying, referring to not looking depressed with the face down in sorrow , usually referring to a situation causing worry or sadness. Keep your chin up, we'll get out of this mess. Key (contexts): The word Key, in most languages, refers to something important or essential. It may or may not use the literal meaning of the word as the way of opening a locked door, which is the original metaphor. The word is used as either a noun or a verb in metaphors: Original meaning: The key to the problem. This means as in unlocking the door to solving the problem. Verb form: They were all keyed up to go. Prepared to commence something. Description: Key personnel were called to the meeting. Key means essential people, required to deal with the situation. Noun: Keystone: Originally a stone used as the base of the rest of the structure, now a metaphor for a basic, essential element. Kick The Bucket: American expression, meaning to die. Killer (contexts): Killer is a modern expression used to emphasize a natural characteristic of the subject. The contexts are dictated by the subjects, but in metaphoric use the word means lethal to others. It was a killer program, lots of practical work. Killer T Shirt, that one. This new shopping mall is a category killer, it'll take business away from all the existing shops in the high street. King (contexts): The use of the word King in idioms and metaphors is truly ancient. It refers to the ruler, the chieftain, and the authority of a king as a status. This creates multiple contexts for idioms, depending on usage: ABCD The Discount Kings.

King of all he surveys. King tide. King Shepherd. Knee Jerk Reaction: An unthinking reaction to a situation, a natural reflex. This is a knee jerk reaction to the housing shortage. Know It All (person): A usually disparaging reference to a person claiming or acting as if they have superior knowledge on one or many subjects. The average Know It All knows very little. Knock On Wood (also touch wood): Derived from old European superstition which uses the expression to mean asking the fates for luck by touching wood when mentioning a potentially dangerous situation. Touch wood, it'll be OK, if we keep doing what we're doing. Know The Ropes: Expression from the days of sail, when sailors learned how to use complex rigging on ships, and a person who knew the ropes was fully experienced. We need someone who does know the ropes, to get this job done properly. Know Your Place (also know your station in life): Derived from the days of aristocracy, this is a social idiom, referring to the social hierarchy. The expression evolved afterward to refer to one's place among others with higher status. In many cases it also means showing due respect to senior members of a group. You really should know your place! You can't talk to the boss like that! L Laconic (method of expressing idioms): Laconic refers to the Spartan (Lacaedemonian) form of expression, in which they were famous for making brief statements which summed up an entire situation, often with an implied comment in the statement. In its inverted idiom, it means someone who talks too much. (After six hours of talk) Meaning 'No', apparently? I don't think a six hour monologue qualifies as a laconic exercise.

Land Of Our Fathers: Traditional expression in many cultures, the idiom refers to heritage and entitlements of generations. This is the Land Of Our Fathers, we'll never surrender it. Land Lubber: Originally meaning a person inexperienced at sea, another meaning is someone who's not at home on a subject. Fred's a good accountant, but he's a land lubber on the seas of finance. Land Of The Living: This expression means the real world of others, in its literal sense. It's often used as an idiom to refer to someone's state of mind or circumstances. This expression often lets in a lot of metaphors into conversations. Come back to the Land Of The Living, before it's too late! You've been studying for days in that crypt of a room, no wonder you're looking like a zombie! Last but not least: Theatrical expression, referring to a final performance of a group, with obvious linguistic consonance. The statement is usually rhetorical, because in most cases the best and most popular performers come on stage after the others. Last but not least, Elvis! Lateral Thinker, Thinking: From Edward de Bono's term for his methods of logic. This expression is a classic instance of the recent development of idioms. Modern language has changed drastically from the earlier forms, and new expressions are often much more economic and functional. Lateral thinking covers an entire methodology and range of degrees as an idiom. Usually it relates to a way of logically approaching a situation, but can be used for specifics and to create objectives. Various meanings and usages for idioms are created: Fortunately he's a lateral thinker, and stays focused on the end result, so he doesn't get lost on the job. Whodunits are constructed using lateral thinking, using the end situation as the criteria for the story. Lead By The Nose: To lead someone against their will to a point or conclusion.

Literal minded: One of the true idiomatic insults.We had to lead them by the nose to admission there had been fraud. Like a chicken with its head cut off: Refers to the headless chicken running around after decapitation. isn't it? . I need to talk to you. unable to read the meaning of a statement or turn of phrase. here. but not thinking. The dogs in the idiom are possible dangers or problems. and we haven't heard the end of it since. Let The Cat Out Of The Bag: Traditional expression meaning to give information which causes problems. We need a level playing field in terms of trade for our exports. Level playing field: Modern expression. told the others they were leaving. meaning a fair state of play. somewhat overstated way of asking someone to listen to you. We either let sleeping dogs lie. 'Friends Romans countrymen. I've never really thought the headless chicken approach achieved much. Lend Me Your Ear: From Shakespeare. lend me your ears!' The expression is now an ornate. Let Sleeping Dogs Lie: Very old expression. They let the cat out of the bag. Being a bit literal minded to assume rolling your car will prevent it gathering moss. The expression refers to someone who is virtually illiterate. Brutus' speech on the death of Caesar. Finally. Let Bygones Be Bygones: To allow former grievances and problems to remain in the past and not to continue unresolved. or we get a wolf pack of problems. usually in competitive situations. Lend an ear. they agreed to let bygones be bygones. meaning someone who's frantically running around.

Long in the Tooth: Derived from growing teeth as one ages. living on hope alone. trying to be someone he wasn't.Living a lie: Living in a situation where one is misrepresented. independent. Lost In The Woods: Originally related to fairy tale The Babes In The Wood. That guy's a real lone wolf. Lone Wolf: Person who fights their own battles. Living on your wits: Living on what you can think up for yourself. He's living proof you can beat the industry at its own game. if you've got the wits to make it work. from anyone. refers to people not knowing how to find their way out of a situation. live. doesn't ask for favors. Also refers to experience. doing something unreal because of a false condition of life. . Living on a prayer: Literally. Living proof: The real. Living on your wits can be great. and it caught up with him. personification of proof of a statement or idea. He's a bit long in the tooth to get fooled by that. They were living on a prayer. when they got their lucky break. He was living a lie.

Main Squeeze: American expression. Make Hay While The Sun Shines: Traditional expression. That wasn't a business conference. Now refers to an erratic. Told him what happened. now meaning take to advantage of the opportunity. aggressive person. but he really is a loose cannon on this subject. That guy's an absolute mad dog. main boyfriend or girlfriend. Mad As A Snake: Australian expression. M Mad As A Hatter: From Lewis Carroll's Alice In Wonderland. I like the guy. Mad Hatter's Tea Party: Also refers to The Mad Hatter. originally meaning to do work when conditions are suitable. referring to an irrational. but mad as a hatter. it was a Mad Hatter's Tea Party. and not stay lost in the woods about this situation. a mad dog is a dangerous one that is usually shot. referring to The Mad Hatter and his logic as a character reference to a person. She's my main squeeze. Mad Dog: (person) Derived from criminal slang. This is my main man. and could roll around the deck crushing people. unpredictable gun being fired with random results. Leroy. when a cannon on a sailing ship came loose. Loose Cannon: From naval slang. . Main Man: American expression meaning the most important friend or associate.Let's get some information. and he was mad as a snake. but in context as a gathering like the tea party in Alice in Wonderland. Nice person.

Can be deprecatory. Method To Madness: Having a purpose to apparently meaningless or bizarre actions.We've got buyers crashing the phone lines. he bought up all the rights to all those B movies. Looks like you're a minority of one. Can be extremely sarcastic.. and just added a zero to what he paid for them. Mister (contexts) American expression derived from the titles of the winners of beauty pageants and contests. or self deprecatory. it's Mister I Don't Need Insurance now entering the lobby! Moral High Ground: Theoretical point of moral virtue. Frequently satiric as an idiom. Yes. Classic case of masterful inactivity. Dave. but it was more luck than judgment. So what's the moral high ground on other people's poverty? More Luck Than Judgment: To do something more by accident than by intent. meaning a joke often finds the truth of the matter. with the title defining the subject of the idiom. There was a method to the madness all right. Many a true word spoken in jest. sometimes means allowing a situation to resolve itself without getting involved oneself. I suggested that as a joke. and/or uncompromising. Minority Of One: On your own in a vote or decision related to your opinion. and he did absolutely nothing. Many A True Word Spoken In Jest: Traditional expression. I'd love to take credit for that. Miss. let's make hay while the sun shines! Make No Bones About: Make a statement which is unmistakable in its meaning. Mrs. . they went broke trying to sue him. He made no bones about how he felt. and they really were intending to do that! Masterful Inactivity: Ironic English expression meaning to achieve more by doing nothing. above others.

send us another shipment. Now refers broadly to any form of unbelievable mysticism. N Nest Egg: Life's savings. Murderous Silence: An awkward. Now refers to a range of past products or people. You out of your mind. They got scared of the risks and decided to protect their nest egg. Now means don't tell anyone. we can't get enough. Mum's the word: Originally an English expression. suing your customers? Don't bite the hand that feeds! New kid on the block: New person in a social group. referring to chart hits of the past. we don't want the competition to know about our prize giveaway. you could see their jobs were on the line. don't know how they can keep up with the demand.More The Merrier: The idiom means literally more of something makes for a better situation. but in its inversion it means not wanting any more in an ironic sense. More moldy oldies than any other radio station! Mumbo Jumbo: Originally referred to native superstitions during colonial times. Oh. There was a murderous silence from the boss as they tried to explain their sales figures. meaning don't tell Mum. money tucked away. where saying nothing is doing someone serious damage. The more the merrier. another mouth to feed! Moldy Oldies: 1960s pop culture expression. silence. yeah. embarrassing. Mum's the word about this new ad campaign. . Never (or Don't) Bite The Hand That Feeds You: Refers to feeding animals in the context of not damaging your source of food. the more the merrier. More management science mumbo jumbo.

and make sure I didn't fall out the window. You're not playing with a full deck here. The idiom. Off On The Wrong Foot: Starting with the wrong step or move. but doing pretty well. No man is an island: Literary expression. but I said no dice. won't do or agree to something. no room to maneuver. No Dice: Not gambling on the subject. because you obviously don't know they actually didn't want to sue you in the first place. don't know what we're going to do with this lot. The statement has been mistranslated in common usage. New York Minute: Refers to time passing at a much higher rate in some environments. mainly because modern English grammar and old usage are quite different. I had to duck to avoid hitting my head on the ceiling. is the same. You couldn't swing a cat in the place. He aged a year in a New York minute. They wanted to stall. The idiom refers to the fact that nobody lives in isolation from the world. however.He's the new kid on the block in the industry. miscellaneous bits and pieces. Got off on the wrong foot there. literally. O Odds And Sods: English expression. try it again. No man is an island. who's been known to speak occasionally. No Room to Swing a Cat: Small space. sometimes lacks facts. Not Playing With a Full Deck: Lacks normal intelligence. not even Fred. � And here we have the odds and sods collection. Off The Hook: . from John Donne's Meditations XVII 'No man is an island entire of itself'.

O. If it's OK. referring to old culture. They're usually opponents. The current version now means a general affirmative. On The Fence: Not taking a position on either side of an argument or debate. .K. or a statement which isn't made for publication. they know we didn't do it. old ideas. we're not too impressed with the arguments to date about the new high rise development. and we've had to ask for a redraft. The word ominous means omen-like. it isn't. old people. Omen. a dinner plate nailed to the restaurant door with the meal still attached! Yeah. it's OK. Strictly off the record. Ominous (situation): An omen was originally a sign from the gods of a fate. looks ominous. originally meaning off the public record. (Original meaning and current): OK was originally an expression meaning All Correct on shipping bills of lading and the lists of goods were marked OK. He was even sitting on the fence about sitting on the fence.No longer at risk. The fossil fuel concept is just old and in the way. meaning the contents had been checked and were correct. or not taking a position of preference. expectant. Yep. Off the Record: This is a current journalistic expression. we're off the hook. Old And In The Way: An early generation gap expression. but if not. now generalized. wouldn't even admit he wasn't taking a position. They waited on pins and needles for the results of the job interview. doesn't it? On Pins And Needles: Nervous. On The Same Page: People on the same page are working together in the same situation. but they're on the same page this time. It's an omen.

unsupported. with that statement. going out for a good time. avoiding blame. They were out on the town for the first time in years. Out On The Town: Have a good time. The new job came out of the blue. 'They can pass this legislation to make poverty compulsory over my dead body. Those auditors always pass the buck to their staff. having a ball. when things go wrong. They're out on a limb. meaning being patient brings rewards over time. after all. out of the sky. he stuck around. Patience Is A Virtue: Traditional statement. completely beyond the norm. Their comedy is really over the top. Patience really was a virtue. P Parallel Universes: Modern expression referring to living in different continuums of events. and got the promotion. Over My Dead Body: Implies the speaker will fight to the death to prevent the subject of discussion from happening.' said the welfare worker. no warning. They seem to live in some parallel universe. Peaches And Cream: .Out Of The Blue: Literally. Pass The Buck: Give the responsibility to others. did his job. unexpected. really. Over the Top: Bizarre. Out On A Limb: In a difficult situation. where nobody cares.

Not the Peeping Tom you'd want. in the group hierarchy. So everything's peaches and cream. where the group pressures individuals to conform or take actions acceptable to it. I don't think this guy has ever heard of peer pressure. Pencil In: The pencil metaphor means to provisionally write something. and check it out later. we're behind schedule. Frequently sarcastic. . Get the pedals to the metal people. is it? Pearl Of Wisdom: A gem of a thought. Show us your pearly whites. usually on women in the original context. smile. and is often used to mean the opposite in its sarcastic sense. Peeping Tom: Voyeur. he's not paying a lot of attention to it. is he? Peer Pressure: Psychological idiom. Prick up your ears. Any further pearls of wisdom. I think we can say Fred is more pecked than pecking. referring to peer group mechanics. derived from the pecking order in chickens. often refers to teeth. with no problems. I'll pencil it in. Pedal to the metal: Full acceleration. in case bankruptcy wasn't enchanting enough? Pearly White: Color metaphor. Prick up your ears: Command. This is an ornamented idiom. telling people to listen.A state of unrequited bliss. which can be corrected later if required. now. and if he has. intruding on people's privacy. top speed. see if we can do it. folks! Pecking order: Social order. I'm not going to say this again.

we're busy. Praise The Lord And Pass The Ammunition: Puritan saying. Pipe down.Pigeon (person): American slang. Can be used to describe a situation of over indulgence. something we've never even seen. so in a few thousand years. Yeah. great to know. The reference is always negative. referring to something or someone small. How are you. you guys. pint size. describing a response or characteristic. I need to hear this! Practice Makes Perfect: Learning from experience. Pig In A Poke: An unknown quantity. meaning na�ve person. you growing up? Pipe Down: Command. How could you be such a total pigeon for new cars? Pig Headed: Stubborn person. derived from the old expression to make a pig of oneself. now praise the Lord and pass the ammunition. he could give lessons to the pigs. training. Practice makes perfect. He's not just pig headed when he makes up his mind. The workshop party was a total pig out. We're talking about a pig in a poke. Prick Up Your Ears: Pay attention and listen. you'll be a chef. referring to general worldly circumstances. Pint Sized: Diminutive. and you want to buy it? Pig Out : Over eat. telling someone to be silent. .

If you keep wasting your money. Can be a character assessment. that's not a shark. as a joke. all politicians are pure as the driven snow. I was only pulling your leg. for my tastes. you have to understand what I'm about to tell you. Often a very sarcastic idiom. Pride definitely came before his fall. Put a sock in it. playing a joke while pretending it's real. with possibly regrettable consequences. Put a sock in it: Telling someone to stop making a racket. of course. either it's pulling your leg or I am� Pure As The Driven Snow: Pristine. Nah. Quitter: Very negative reference to someone who gives up and/or doesn't make a real or honest effort. or stop supplying the means to do something. incorruptible. because he didn't listen about that makeup when he did it himself. Pulling Your Leg: Kidding. so come out of the fallout shelter. That new law really queered the pitch for the people who bought the things before they became illegal. He's too quick on the trigger. Really. I'm pulling the plug on your allowance. . Pull the plug: Derived from life support systems. The inverted form means suggesting something is a joke when real. Well. Quick On The Trigger: Acting too quickly. Put an end to.Prick up your ears. Pride Comes Before A Fall: Pride makes people self obsessed and vulnerable. Oh. I'm trying to sleep! Q Queer the pitch: To distort a situation in a way that creates problems. and couldn't even sell them.

The council was left red faced with a bill for gold lam� uniforms. you can't even see the road. They ratted on their friends. In Asia the Rat is one of the 12 animals of Buddhist custom and the Chinese lunar calendar. Redneck (person.The guy's a quitter. It was a real red letter day when they won the lottery. plain and simple. Raining Cats and Dogs: Extremely heavy rain. The guy's a rat. meaning a lunatic. Usually a negative reference. Red Letter Day: Great day. uncultured. hence multiple contexts: I just want to get out of the rat race. someone who doesn't know what he's talking about. and the word is always negative. cultural): American expression originally meaning hick. Red Faced: Embarrassed. Wants to get out of the social rut. now meaning a boorish. They betrayed their friends. Nice guy in his way. no delays. action): The rat is the traditional European symbol of vermin since the Plague era. and the idiom is imported. This person is untrustworthy. It's absolutely raining cats and dogs out there. ignorant person or idea. literally or metaphorically. The word is widely used in idioms. 'no rain checks'. Rise and Shine: . meaning the deal is for this time only. Ratbag: Anglo Australian expression. won't even think about ringing her! R Rain check: Derived from baseball expression. but a ratbag about his diet. where rain stops play. Rat (race. disgusting. referring to a disgusting. character. It was an idea which could only appeal to a redneck. unsanitary animal and its habits. great event.

The rule of thumb here would be that we're sure they will usually order 100 units at a time. when he saw it on TV. Well. if you don't want to do it. They've gone back to their roots with these songs. Roots (origin. Root For: To barrack for a team or a person. or wipe something. culture): This expression started in the 1970s as part of African American culture. The wider meaning is to erase an error. we've got another ten loads to get on board.Get out of bed in the morning. Rub Salt In The Wounds: To make an injury more painful. as in to end the concept of it. We're rooting for you. we'll just wipe the whole idea. then. Can be a conceptual expression referring to motivation or impetus. Rome wasn't built in a day either. After he fell off the stage. Rome Wasn't Built In A Day: Great work takes time. or get moving. Mary. she laughed herself sick. Rule Of Thumb: From the painter's use of a thumb to measure proportions in a sketch. Tends to work as a benchmark concept. referring to ancestry and heritage. S . Also refers to unrealistic expectations of time frames. because they found they wanted the buildings to be able to stand up. Rub out. it meant to kill someone. and called in the accountant to check their expenditure. wipe (action): Originally a 1920s gangster expression. They ran out of steam when Bill started to have doubts about the project. and has developed as a general idiom for cultural origins of all kinds. and that really rubbed salt in the wounds. Rise and shine you guys. Run out of steam: Run out of motive power or energy. referring to people acting as if asleep.

like they hadn't known about it before. he looks sick as a dog. Sick Of the Sight Of�: The sight of something or someone is repulsive. the Noble Savage. He shouldn't have come to work today. So after the news came out they were all going into Shock Horror mode. The idioms containing the word also contain the context. The jungle is a place of savage grace. See The Wood For The Trees: The expression Can't See The Wood For The Trees means unable to see the obvious. Shock Horror: Usually a derisive reference to an overreaction. They were on their last legs. They got off Scot free. natural events. referring to the bell at the end of a round. If you have a look at the trees. sicker than a person should be. The conceptual sacred pig of managerial descent from deity. Significant Other: .Sacred (context): A thing described as sacred is one which is supposedly above criticism or reproach. sometimes with added contexts. positive or negative. The sight of so much waste makes me sick when I think how poor some people in the world are. Savage Grace: The grace and beauty of wild things. Scot free: To escape without due penalty. Sick As A Dog: Traditional expression meaning very sick. saved by the bell when the event was called off. because nobody was able to prove they were in the wrong. sickening. The contraction and other uses of the expression mean the same thing. you might see the wood. That was an idea which they held sacred. Saved By The Bell: Boxing expression.

living in a bad situation. The unholy smell of that person's ethics! The rosy sights and smells appeared to require some sugar. person or subject. Smell (contexts): Any reference to smell will be either good or bad. The anti poverty protests are a sign of the changing times. This is your new home. Sleaze. A sobering thought is one which makes you think clearly. I smell something very fishy. sleazy: Modern expression referring to an unsavory place. untrustworthy elements. or disgusting behavior. Those poor people have been on Skid Row for years. suggesting crime. Sobering Thought: In this case the word sobering is a metaphor for changing your previous mindset. which expands the context of the idiom. a current phenomenon. sight and hearing. He's a sleaze. Sixth Sense: A sense beyond the five senses of touch. Sign Of The Times: Indicative of the contemporary. Not many people come up smelling of daisies in a situation like that. The idiom literally quantifies an extrasensory capability. She has a sixth sense about stock prices. you'll be snug as a bug in this house. poor. feel. some times using another idiom to create the new meaning. Skid Row: Early 20th century expression referring to being broke. The qualification is of its nature.Modern expression referring to an unspecified relationship. in any idiom. I smelt a rat. seems to always know what they're going to do. and sure enough it was him. and that's really about the only way you can describe him. actual or conceptual. . Snug As A Bug In A Rug: Mainly a rhyming phrase. smell. She's my significant other. as a matter of fact. this doesn't look trustworthy. simply noting that a person is important. but used to refer to a nice warm cozy place or situation.

all right. More sound and fury. Soulful Expression: Often a sarcastic idiom. Doesn't that guy ever actually do anything? Southpaw: Boxing expression meaning a left handed boxer or style of fighting. Sound And Fury Signifying Nothing: Quote from Shakespeare. He was sore as a gumboil when you brought up that topic. He's a real son of a gun. Social Standing: Position in a social structure. Sophistries are a pretentious waste of time and thought. Son Of A Gun: Reckless person. It's actually a slightly euphemistic idiom for far more coarse expressions. you know. son of a gunman or outlaw. . The idiom reflects the irritable nature of sufferers. I see. he went from saint to leper. which can affect the temper of those suffering from the condition. positive or negative. and we were in no condition to even think about it. That soulful expression of yours really does get on my nerves. The scandal did nothing for his social standing. referring to a great deal of noise and bluster with no real result. with a suggestion of bogus intellectualism.It was a sobering thought that we had to go back to work the following day. Son Of Your Father: A direct reference to characteristics of the father. referring to someone looking sincere and noble. always living it up whether anyone likes it or not. Sore As A Gumboil: A gumboil is a painful lump on the gums. Sophistry (mode of idiomatic argument): A sophistry is a false argument. You're your father's son. only you and he could achieve that.

staggering: (mental condition): The word stagger means to walk uncertainly. makes him hard to argue with when he comes up with those unexpected arguments. now you've got the spoiled child. originally Stain on the escutcheon. Spare the rod. Idiom is now used widely. fiery state of mind. I was so staggered by the news that I really had no idea what to do about it. Spitting Image: Refers to an image or likeness so like the original it seems as if it could spit. Staggered. Stain on character: Old expression. Fred was spitting chips when we told him we had a whole new set of figures. we know we're playing against a stacked deck here. which meant a stain on the reputation. Stage Managed: A situation which appears to have been conducted as a performance for the benefit of those seeing it. Yeah. to the child's detriment. spoil the child: Traditional saying meaning that lack of discipline will make a spoilt brat out of a child. Spitting chips Furious. Stacked Deck: Card playing expression. I was writing my blog and got stage fright. and the idiom refers to a mental state where one is uncertain of one's position and feelings. I think this whole fight between them is being stage managed for our benefit. you spared the rod for so long. meaning the order of cards has been arranged unfairly so selected cards are dealt to selected players. is involved. .He's got a real southpaw style in his approach. Spitting image of someone who always looked like they were spitting chips. real or hypothetical. Well. to get sympathy. Stage Fright: Theatrical expression meaning pre performance nerves. referring to any situation where an performance in front of an audience.

Stern Lesson: A tough lesson. they were so starstruck they stuck around taking pictures of themselves in the lead actor's hotel room after he left. Stand Over: Criminal slang. do you think? Status Quo: Latin expression. get our own materials. . is all I'm saying. Starstruck: Dazzled by fame or reputation. Station In Life: One's role or position in life or as a member of the society. often ironic. Status Symbol: Possession or property indicating a superior social status. but he tried to clean it up. where the conditions were difficult but something was learned. The status quo at the moment is that we're waiting for them to wake up and do their jobs properly. context. Start From Scratch: The word scratch means literally from nothing. Typical starving artist. It's so common it's now a clich�. I just don't think a rubber duck really is a status symbol. The budget cuts were a stern lesson in managing our costs. Ah.The conviction was a real stain on his character. as the office boy. Jeff. the state of what is. very scary. it's maybe not your station in life to tell senior lawyers how to run their murder trials. and build the thing. Starving artist: The starving artist motif is a common theme in books and tales of artist's lives. meaning intimidation. So we start from scratch. took him twelve hours and three meals to find his way out of his limousine. The guy was a real standover man. but as an idiom it relates to a topic as a conditional.

There are so many idiomatic senses that each has to be considered relative to the total statement in which the word is contained. The guy has a heart of stone. If that's not a stony face. but in terms of responses to a prior situation or statement. I was stone cold sober. That wasn't just a stony silence. One stone on top of another. Stony Faced: A hostile expression. hadn't had a drink all day. yeah. I don't know what is. If you're thinking of becoming stony broke. Storm In A Teacup: A lot of fuss about nothing important. clear headed. Stony Broke: Very broke. immovable. now that you mention it. Stonewall: To be very obstructive. Stone Cold: Absolutely sober. without proper feeling for others. They're stonewalling. In the traditional sense. that was solid granite. I've never heard him express sympathy for anyone or anything. stone was referred to as a building metaphor. I'd say waking me up at four in the morning about your acne was a bit of a storm in a teacup. I swear. Well. Stony Silence: Similar to a stony faced expression. in the sense of real hard times. Stonehearted: Heartless. or impassive with a sense of being unsympathetic to others. I suggest you don't try it. I think they're playing for time. meaning something hard and unyielding. Stormy Petrel: .Stone (contexts): Stone is an old metaphor in many idioms. unfriendly.

Stuck In A Rut: A rut was created by old wagon wheels cutting into roads. It's a real rut. Test of courage:< . Sweat Of Your Brow: By your own efforts and hard work.A person who seems to be forever predicting disasters. he looks like a sucker. so be careful. or occasionally an event which was stunning. Sucker (person): 19th century African American expression meaning baby. to be able to swear like a soldier. T Territorial (person. issue) A person who defends their professional position. We had this famous socialite on the phone. Swear Like A Trooper: Military expression. referring to the fish being stunned with a blow after being caught. This woman was such a stunner the whole restaurant went quiet. The modern version means to be struck senseless by a situation. Trouble is he's not only a sucker. I'd say he was a stormy petrel. Stunner: Mid 20th century expression meaning a stunningly beautiful woman. and she's just standing there looking gorgeous. Usually. The modern meaning of the expression means to be stuck doing the same things all the time. You appreciate things you've earned by the sweat of your brow. swearing like a trooper. We have some very territorial salesmen in this company. Now means a person who's a fool. but in this case. Stunned Mullet: Fishing expression. at least 500 people just staring. trying to speak. So he's looking like a stunned mullet. he's right. and I don't want to be stuck doing these repetitive things all the time. forcing other wagons to use the same ruts.

Fred's a bit under the weather. but in general modern usage. Up a blind alley: Following a path which leads to an unknown destination. referring to fox hunts. and won't be coming in today. Unmentionable. event. having the force of law in terms of being observed by all. Use your noggin. or sometimes dead end. in pursuit of the uneatable. Nut. not a screwdriver! V Van Gogh's ear for music: Van Gogh's famous cutting off of his own ear in an argument with his friend Paul Gauguin is well known. here. like unmentionables as an old term referring to underclothes. Noggin.: The human brain has a lot of idiomatic metaphors. unspeakable (concept): These expressions are based on social concepts of things not discussed in polite society. . and twice as expensive. Use Your� Noodle. The unsung heroes of the office Christmas party were the data entry people. They have some individual contexts. but generally means feeling unwell. but deliberately not specified. action): A person or group not given due credit. refer to something terrible. refers to sin in the context of obscenity. The unspeakable. (Oscar Wilde. It was an unwritten law in the office that you just didn't wake Fred up after lunch. The whole marketing campaign seems to have gone up a blind alley. hence the reference to Van Gogh's ear when referring to someone who's not listening. not usually used in modern parlance.) Unsung (person. Uglier than sin. that's a car. but continue to exist in idioms. and some are quite obscure. Unwritten Law: An understood and generally accepted social custom.Uglier Than Sin: Old expression. Under the weather: Refers literally to seasonal illnesses. The actual words are quite dated. or doesn't seem to hear properly.

this is the opposite of the normal process. expression. for your own sake. referring to diversity and variety in life as stimulating the taste of life. Wanderlust: The desire to travel. perhaps too open. which is often contracted in various ways. in some cases. in terms of business hire or rental. George is looking like he's had some wear and tear. in my opinion. it's all water under the bridge now. where the obvious outer scars aren't those being referred to. again? W Wag the Dog: The complete expression. Wear Your Heart On Your Sleeve: To be very open. wearing her heart on her sleeve like that! Wearing The Scars: This is a metaphoric idiom.He's got Van Gogh's ear when it comes to melody. abstracted into this word as part of an idiom. Variety is the spice of life� so what are we doing here. Obviously. Wear and Tear. Well Bred: . Look. When applied to people. This is the fleas wagging the dog. which is the context of the idioms. Get over it. Poor Joan. He's wearing a few scars that you could only see if you knew him well. but in some cases it's a double metaphor. Water Under The Bridge: The exact idiom is that water which has flowed under a bridge has moved on. the idiom means the effects of experience. is The Tail Wagging The Dog. Hence the context. The idiom means natural attrition of the condition of a thing. Wear And Tear This is actually a legal expression. hackneyed. means expected deterioration over time. Wanderlust will drive people around the world. Variety Is The Spice Of Life: Very old. about your feelings in public. as well as an idiom. which means something described as water under the bridge has passed. for which the hirer or renter isn't considered liable. recently.

When It Rains. which is now virtually meaningless as a literal statement. really knows his way around any group of people. it happens to excess. When it rains. He was always at home among the well heeled. running around complaining. there. Wild. It was a really wild and woolly pub. and powerful. wealthy.This idiom has a social context. Man Woman or Thing: . uncontrolled. She was being a real wet hen. sometimes refers to a social group of the best people in society. which means when the impossible happens. and aren't recommended for sleeping in. Well Heeled: Literally means well dressed. I see. In modern terms. Free beer! Wicked! Wild and Woolly: Something that looks wild. meaning good. and not before. but means emotionally upset and vocal. as one of the antonymic inversions of the original meaning of the word as the idiom. Fred is very well bred. It Pours: When something happens at all. Wet blankets are usually used to put out fires. I know he didn't intend to be a wet blanket. Wet Hen: The original expression is Madder Than A Wet Hen. Wet Blanket: A person who acts like a damper on a happy occasion. more work than we could do in a year. A well bred person was considered one of the upper class. When Pigs Fly : Pigs aren't very likely to be flying animals. We'll get new staff when pigs fly. some of the people looked utterly mad.Child. it pours. Hence the expression. but also had at one point a class context. Wicked (thing. it means a person with good manners and social grace. situation): New Zealand expression. but he's so good at it.

Originally meant a person of the wilds. living outside society. Woman scorned: From Shakespeare's famous statement Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. I'd say. Wine and Dine: A romantic engagement by implication. They gave us a completely wrong steer on that deal. I'd go out with him. These so called unsolicited testimonials aren't worth a damn. but xeno biology wasn't one of my subjects. the word is now becoming an idiomatic usage in relation to sciences. is that he's always been an idiot. (originally there was actually a Brand X) meaning an unknown. worth a damn. now commonly used to mean without any bias or personal interest. This looks very Brand X to me. . or isn't. She's the definitive Wild Child of the current generation of musicians. Worth A Damn: Worth caring about. which is enlarging its frame of reference. While retaining its original meaning. Xeno (concept): From the Greek. Now applied to a woman whose feelings have been ignored or abused. Now means a person living outside social norms. without prejudice. in the idiomatic context of the statement. She's a woman scorned. and here comes the fury. She seems to be able to find people to wine and dine her in caves. often a celebrity. Something is. X (Brand) X: Advertising idiom.Old Celtic expression revived in the 20th century. My opinion. Without prejudice: Originally a legal expression. inferior brand compared to the sponsor's product. meaning outside. Wrong Steer: Directed the wrong way. or to the wrong conclusion.

and their characteristics. X was the spot on the map where the treasure was buried. Zero (descriptor): The use of zero in an idiom indicates the value of the subject is set at nothing. he looks like a kid's coloring book. In my opinion his reputation equates to one large zero . Don't judge him by his cover. It can be a serious insult. I assume? Y You Are What You Eat: What you eat determines your nature. diets. Variously used to describe people. but knowing you. You can't take it with you. Well. if you are what you eat. lawsuits� X marks the spot where we find some actual figures. Hmmm� Audit reports. for once. applied to a person. The idiomatic usage is so common that it's now a fully understood idiom in its own right. but he's more like Britannica. why are you eating that? You Can't Judge A Book By Its Cover: External appearances don't tell the whole story. You Can't Take it With You: Old saying referring to material possessions in the afterlife. I know you'll at least try.X marks the spot: From old pirate stories. bills.

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