Let's enjoy English!

~ Rain, Rain, Go Away, Come Back Another Day ~

9-4-13 rain

Boy did it ‘bucket-down’ early this morning! Not just raining “cats ‘n dogs”, it was more like ‘bears & elephants’ - ha ha! By the way, there’s no such phrase ‘bears & elephants’, so don’t get confused with that now ~ it’s just silly-old-me playing around with words.

We do however use “it’s raining cats ‘n dogs” when it rains heavily. Some people like to use the phrase, “the heavens opened” - meaning it is pouring down!

Whatever the phrase may be, make sure you have a ‘brolly’ (umbrella) with you today ...

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COOL BRITISH ENGLISH IDIOMS #7 - do you know these?

idiom last

Here is the last of my looong list of British Idioms ~ read them and have fun using them, like true Brits ...

Over-egg the pudding
If you over-egg the pudding, you spoil something by trying to improve it excessively. It is also used nowadays with the meaning of making something look bigger or more important than it really is. ('Over-egg' alone is often used in this sense.)

Pin money
If you work for pin money, you work not because you need to but because it gives you money for extra little luxuries and treats.

Pink pound
In the UK, the pink pound is an idiom for the economic power of gay people.

Pull your finger out!
If someone tells you to do this, they want you to hurry up. ('Get your finger out' is also used.)

Quart into a pint pot
If you try to put or get a quart into a pint pot, you try to put too much in a small space. (1 quart = 2 pints)

Queer fish
A strange person is a queer fish.

Quids in
If somebody is quids in, they stand to make a lot of money from something. (Quid is slang for pound.)

Rake over old coals
If you go back to old problems and try to bring them back, making trouble for someone, you are raking over old coals.

Rearrange the deck-chairs on the Titanic
If people are rearranging the deck-chairs on the Titanic, they are making small changes that will have no effect as the project, company, etc., is in very serious trouble.

Right royal
A right royal night out would be an extremely exciting, memorable and fun one.

See you anon
If somebody says this when leaving, they expect to see you again soon.

Send someone to Coventry
If you send someone to Coventry, you refuse to talk to them or co-operate with them.

Shy bairns get nowt
An idiom primarily used by those from the North East of England, used to emphasise the fact that children who fail to ask for something (usually from an older person) probably won't succeed in obtaining it. (bairn = child, nowt = nothing)

Slip through the cracks
If something slips through the cracks, it isn't noticed or avoids detection.

Sound as a pound
if something is as sound as a pound, it is very good or reliable.

Spanner in the works
If someone puts or throws a spanner in the works, they ruin a plan. In American English, 'wrench' is used instead of 'spanner'.

Spend a penny
This is a euphemistic idiom meaning to go to the toilet.

Sticky end
If someone comes to a sticky end, they die in an unpleasant way. ('Meet a sticky end' is also used.)

Sticky wicket
If you are on a sticky wicket, you are in a difficult situation.

Stiff upper lip
If you keep your emotions to yourself and don't let others know how you feel when something bad happens, you keep a stiff upper lip.

Take the Mickey
If you take the Mickey, you tease someone. ('Take the Mick' is also used.)

Take up the reins
If you take up the reins, you assume control of something- an organisation, company, country, etc.('Take over the reins' is also used.)

Tally ho!
This is an exclamation used for encouragement before doing something difficult or dangerous.

Tears before bedtime
This idiom is used when something seems certain to go wrong or cause trouble.

Ten a penny
If something is ten a penny, it is very common. ("Two a penny" is also used.)

Thick as mince
If someone is as thick as mince, they are very stupid indeed.

Thin blue line
The thin blue line is a term for the police, suggesting that they stand between an ordered society and potential chaos. (Police uniforms are blue.)

Three sheets in the wind
Someone who is three sheets in the wind is very drunk. ('Three sheets to the wind' is also used.  'Seven sheets' is an alternative number used.)

Throw a spanner in the works
If you throw a spanner in the works, you cause a problem that stops or slows progress on something that was going well.

Up sticks
If you up sticks, you leave somewhere, usually permanently and without warning- he upped sticks and went to work abroad.

Up the spout
If something has gone up the spout, it has gone wrong or been ruined.

Up the stick
If a woman is up the stick, she's pregnant.

A woman politician given an unimportant government position so that the government can pretend it takes women seriously is a wallflower.

Watering hole
A watering hole is a pub.

Who wears the trousers?
The person who wears the trousers in a relationship is the dominant person who controls things.

Wood for the trees
If someone can't see the wood for the trees, they get so caught up in small details that they fail to understand the bigger picture.

Wouldn't touch it with a barge-pole
If you wouldn't touch something with a barge-pole, you would not consider being involved under any circumstances. (In American English, people say they wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole)

Yeoman's service
To do yeoman's service is to serve in an exemplary manner. (Exemplary means the best of its kind.)

Look forward to tomorrow’s start of the “****” theme-week ... (it's a surprise ;-)

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COOL BRITISH ENGLISH IDIOMS #6 - do you know these?

idiom Saturday

Actually not for 'Pete' but for YOUR sake ~> learn and use these:

Off your chump
If someone is off their chump, they are crazy or irrational.

Off your rocker
Someone who is off their rocker is crazy.

On Carey Street
If someone is on Carey Street, they are heavily in debt or have gone bankrupt.

On the blink
Is a machine is on the blink, it isn't working properly or is out of order.

On the blower
If someone is on the blower, they are on the phone.

On the cards
If something is in the cards, it is almost certain to happen.

On the dole
Someone receiving financial assistance when unemployed is on the dole.

On the fiddle
Someone who is stealing money from work is on the fiddle, especially if they are doing it by fraud.

On the game
A person who is on the game works as a prostitute.

On the knock
If you buy something on the knock, you pay for it in instalments.

On the knocker
If someone is on the knocker, they are going from house to house trying to buy or sell things or get support.

On the never-never
If you buy something on the never-never, you buy it on long-term credit.

On the nod
Someone who's on the nod is either asleep or falling asleep, especially when the shouldn't or are are in a position unusual for sleep, like sitting or standing.

On the take
Someone who is stealing from work is on the take.

On the trot
This idiom means 'consecutively'; I'd saw them three days on the trot, which means that I saw them on three consecutive days.

One over the eight
Someone who has had one over the eight is very drunk indeed. It refers to the standard eight pints that most people drink and feel is enough.

Out in the sticks
If someone lives out in the sticks, they live out in the country, a long way from any metropolitan area.

A few more tomorrow ...

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COOL BRITISH ENGLISH IDIOMS #5 - do you know these?

idiom Friday
Be 'as keen as mustard', have some fun and use these in your conversations?

Jam tomorrow
This idiom is used when people promise good things for the future that will never come.

Jersey justice
Jersey justice is very severe justice.

Keen as mustard
If someone is very enthusiastic, they are as keen as mustard.

Keep your chin up
This expression is used to tell someone to have confidence.

Keep your wig on!
This idiom is used to tell someone to calm down.

Kick your heels
If you have to kick your heels, you are forced to wait for the result or outcome of something.

Kitchen-sink drama deals with ordinary people's lives.

Laugh to see a pudding crawl
Someone who would laugh to see a pudding crawl is easily amused and will laugh at anything.

Like a bear with a sore head
If someone's like a bear with a sore head, they complain a lot and are unhappy about something.

Like giving a donkey strawberries
If something is like giving a donkey strawberries, people fail to appreciate its value.

Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves
If you look after the pennies, the pounds will look after themselves, meaning that if someone takes care not to waste small amounts of money, they will accumulate capital. ('Look after the pence and the pounds will look after themselves' is an alternative form of this idiom.)

Lose your bottle
If someone loses their bottle, they lose the courage to do something.

Lose your lunch
If you lose your lunch, you vomit.

Make a good fist
If you make a good fist of something, you do it well.

Make a song and dance
If someone makes a song and dance, they make an unnecessary fuss about something unimportant.

Man on the Clapham omnibus
The man on the Clapham omnibus is the ordinary person in the street.

Money for old rope
If something's money for old rope, it's a very easy way of making money.

More front than Brighton
If you have more front than Brighton, you are very self-confident, possibly excessively so.

New man
A New man is a man who believes in complete equality of the sexes and shares domestic work equally.

Nod's as good as a wink
'A nod's as good as a wink' is a way of saying you have understood something that someone has said, even though it was not said directly.  The full phrase (sometimes used in the UK ) is 'a nod's as good as a wink to a blind horse'.

Noddy work
Unimportant or very simple tasks are noddy work.

Nosy parker
A nosy parker is someone who is excessively interested in other people's lives. ('Nosey parker' is an alternative spelling.)

Not cricket
If something is not cricket, it is unfair.

Not give a monkey's
If you couldn't give a monkey's about something, you don't care at all about it.

Off on one
If someone goes off on one, they get extremely angry indeed.

More fun idioms tomorrow ...

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COOL BRITISH ENGLISH IDIOMS #4 - do you know these?

idiom Thursday
These are all interesting ones that you can use while having a good ol' natter over a cuppa tea ...

Go pear-shaped
If things have gone wrong, they have gone pear-shaped.

Go spare
If you go spare, you lose your temper completely.

Gone for a burton
If something's gone for a burton, it has been spoiled or ruined. If a person has gone for a burton, they are either in serious trouble or have died.

Gone pear-shaped
If things have gone pear-shaped they have either gone wrong or produced an unexpected and unwanted result.

Grasp the nettle
If you grasp the nettle, you deal bravely with a problem.

Greasy pole
The greasy pole is the difficult route to the top of politics, business, etc.

Green fingers
Someone with green fingers has a talent for gardening.

Grey pound
In the UK, the grey pound is an idiom for the economic power of elderly people.

Hairy at the heel
Someone who is hairy at the heel is dangerous or untrustworthy.

Hard cheese
Hard cheese means hard luck.

Have a riot
If you have a riot, you enjoy yourself and have a good time.

Have your collar felt
If someone has their collar felt, they are arrested.

Hear something on the jungle telegraph
If you hear something on the jungle telegraph, you pick up some information or informal gossip from someone who shares some common interest.  ('Bush telegraph' is also used.)

Heath Robinson
If a machine or system is described as Heath Robinson, it is very complicated, but not practical or effective, named after a cartoonist who drew very complicated machines that performed simple tasks.

Hold the baby
If someone is responsible for something, they are holding the baby.

Hold your hands up
If you hold your hands up, you accept responsibility for something you have done wrong.

Home, James
This is a cliched way of telling the driver of a vehicle to start driving. It is supposed to be an order to a chauffeur (a privately employed driver).  The full phrase is 'Home, James, and don't spare the horses'.

I should cocoa
This idiom comes from 'I should think so', but is normally used sarcastically to mean the opposite.

If you'll pardon my French
This idiom is used as a way of apologising for swearing.

In a tick
If someone will do something in a tick, they'll do it very soon or very quickly.

In rude health
If someone's in rude health, they are very healthy and look it.

In spades
If you have something in spades, you have a lot of it.

In the clink
If someone is in the clink, they are in prison.

In the club
If a woman's in the club, she's pregnant. 'In the pudding club' is an alternative form.

It's as broad as it is long
Used to express that it is impossible to decide between two options because they're equal.

Tune-in for more tomorrow ...

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