Most Commonly Used Idioms

‘You’ll find that if you hang in, and knock yourself out with hard work, before you know it, you will have mastered these hip expressions and come through with flying colors.’

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ИдиомаПереводЗначениеПример
above board legitimate, legalShe knows it shouldn’t be kept a secret. She wants to keep everything above board.
across the board including everyone or everythingThe company had a successful year. All salaries were increased by 10% across the board.
air one’s dirty laundry in publicвыносить сор из избыdiscuss personal problems openlyHe is a very private person. If he has a problem in his family he doesn’t want to air his dirty laundry in public.
all alongс самого началаall the timeShe was accepted into the university, but she knew all along that she’d get in.
all earsя весь внимание / я весь во вниманииeager to listenI was excited to hear about her vacation. When she told me about it, I was all ears.
all thumbs clumsy, unable to fix thingsDon’t ask me to put that clock back together. I’m all thumbs.
an arm and a leg a large amount of moneyIt cost an arm and a leg to fix the stove.
ants in one’s pants nervous, anxiousHe wasn’t sure if he would be chosen to win the award. He had ants in his pants.
apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, the being similar to a parent or family memberHe acts just like his father. You know, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
apple of one’s eye someone special, usually a son or daughterAlthough he loves his son, his daughter is the apple of his eye.
at fault responsible for making errorsHe is at fault for all the errors on the computer.
at odds in disagreementHe is at odds with his boss.
at one’s beck and call always ready to do what is orderedWhenever she calls him, he’s always helping her. He is at her beck and call.
at one’s wit’s end anxious, franticI need to speak with him to finish the report by tomorrow but he’s not available. I’m at my wit’s end!
at the end of one’s ropeзайти в тупикdesperate, with nowhere to turnI’ve tried every which way to figure out this problem but I can’t. I’m at the end of my rope!
back on one’s feet financially or physically healthy againSince sales improved, he is doing better and he’s getting back on his feet.
back out of withdraw, end an obligation or promiseI made a deal with my friend to help him at work. When I became too busy, I had to back out of it.
back to the drawing board rethink an idea, need to start overWhen my supervisor told me that our idea would not work, we had to go back to the drawing board to come up with something else.
backbone courageHe has no backbone because he was afraid to reprimand her.
backseat driver passenger who tells you how to driveI’ll never drive Joe to the airport again. He kept on wanting me to take another road which I knew was wrong. He is such a backseat driver.
bail one out helpThanks for picking me up when my car broke down. You really bailed me out of a bad situation.
ballpark figure approximate amountWhen I asked the contractor how much it would be to remodel the kitchen, he gave me a ballpark figure.
bang for the buck value for the money spentNewspaper advertising works well for us because we get the best bang for the buck.
bank on it be sure of, count onI’ll be there to help you. You can bank on it.
banker’s hours short work hoursHe loves his job because on Friday, he gets to work banker’s hours.
bark up the wrong tree make a wrong choice or a false assumptionIf he thinks that I’m going to help him paint his house, well he’s barking up the wrong tree.
bat a thousand have a perfect recordHe is so happy that everyone he invited to the party is coming. He’s batting a thousand.
bat an eyelash show emotionHe was filled with emotion during his speech, but she didn’t bat an eyelash.
bawl out reprimandThe team was bawled out after they lost the game.
be beside one’s self be very upsetI was so mad when I heard that she was making up stories about me that I was beside myself.
beat around the bush avoid giving a clear answerI didn’t want to hurt his feelings and tell him that he wasn’t selected for the team. So when he asked me if I had any information, I basically beat around the bush.
beat someone to the punch do something before someone else canShe was going to buy the last red dress that the store had, but I beat her to the punch and bought it first.
beat the rap escape punishmentThere was not enough evidence to convict him, so he beat the rap and was set free.
behind the 8-ball in troubleMy department is late on its deadline. We are behind the 8-ball.
bend over backwards try very hardHe’ll bend over backwards to help any of his friends.
bide one’s time wait patiently for the right opportunityI’m just going to bide my time. I know that eventually a position will open.
big shot important personSince he was given a promotion, he’s been acting like a big shot.
big stink an angry and loud complaintShe made a big stink when her meal was served cold.
birds and bees facts about sex and birthThe girl’s mother told her daughter about the birds and the bees during the summer holidays.
bit off more than one can chew trying to do more than one can physically and mentally handleI told her I would help her in her job, but it seems that’s all I’ve been doing lately. I think I bit off more than I could chew.
bite one’s tongue keep oneself from speakingI had to bite my tongue in order not to tell him that he won the raffle.
bite the dust die, disappearOur old TV didn’t work yesterday. I guess it finally bit the dust.
blab talk too muchShe is always blabbing about her supervisor’s personal life to her friends.
blabbermouth person who talks too much and tells secretsHe is such a blabbermouth that there is no way Bob will be surprised for his party.
black sheep a family member with a bad reputationJohn’s way of life is so different from all of ours. He is known as the black sheep of the family.
blind date a date arranged for two people who don’t know each otherMany married couples have met on a blind date.
blow it lose a chance, make a mistakeI knew I blew it when I forgot my lines in the play.
blow over end, passShe knew her coworkers will eventually forget how she messed up the filing system in the office. She couldn’t wait for the incident to blow over.
blow the whistle expose, betrayI just found out that he’s been stealing from our company for the past year. I don’t want it to continue and I’ve decided to blow the whistle.
boil down make shorter, condenseThis whole complicated situation just boils down to something simple…it’s either a yes or a no.
bomb fail, be unsuccessfulThe whole cast was very sad that the show bombed on Broadway.
bone to pick with someone complaint, argumentI heard that you have rejected my proposal. I’mupset and havea bone to pick with you.
boob tube television setWhat is on the boob tube tonight?
bookworm person who reads a lotThe library is the perfect place for her to work because she is such a bookworm.
booze liquorThey kept bottles of booze behind the bar.
botch up make a mistake, ruinI asked for her help with my watercolor painting. But when she decided to add some purple paint, I knew that she completely botched it up.
bottom line end result, ultimate causeHe never practiced the piano, so the bottom line is, he can’t play very well.
bounce not acceptable because of insufficient funds in the bankIf your check bounces, I will need to charge you extra money.
brain intelligent personShe is such a brain, she will figure out how to solve the problem.
brainstorm very smart ideaI have got a brainstorm! Let’s start giving out free samples of our products.
bread and butter basic needs of life (food, shelter, clothing)The voters are worried about bread and butter issues like jobs and taxes.
break one’s neck try very hardShe broke her neck last night trying to finalize the proposal.
break the ice overcome formality or shyness with othersHe started the meeting by telling a joke. He was hoping the joke would break the ice.
break the news tell a surprising factShe broke the news and told him that she was going to move to another city.
break up separateThey needed to break up their engagement because she fell in love with someone else.
break even have expenses equal to profitsThe company did not make a profit this year. We just broke even.
breathe a word tellPlease don’t breathe a word of this to anyone.
breeze easyLast night’s homework was a breeze.
bring home the bacon earn the family’s incomeHe stays home and raises the children and she brings home the bacon.
broke having no moneyI can’t go to the restaurant tonight because I’m broke.
brown bag bring one’s lunch from homeFor the meeting on Friday, we’ve all decided to brown bag it.
buck dollarI’m low this week on cash. Can I borrow a few bucks to get me through the week?
buckle down study or work very hardLast semester his grades were very low, so this year he decided to buckle down.
buddy-buddy very friendlyShe’s gotten to be very buddy-buddy with her boss.
bug annoy, botherIt bugs me every time he asks to borrow a pencil.
bulldoze intimidate, coerceI did not want to work on the fundraising committee, but I feel I was bulldozed into it.
bum worthless personAs long as I have known him, he never worked and always borrowed from other people. He is such a bum!
burn a hole in one’s pocket money to be spent quicklyThe bonus he received must have burned a hole in his pocket. He ended up buying a car the next day.
bury the hatchet make peaceAlthough we had gotten into a big fight last month, we decided to bury the hatchet and become friends again.
butt in interferePlease don’t butt in to our conversation, it’s personal.
butter up flatter for selfish reasonsI buttered up my boss before I asked him off for the upcoming holiday.
by hook or by crook by any means necessaryEven though we have to fly to get to your wedding, we will be there by hook or by crook.
by the skin of one’s teethеле-еле успеть что-то сделатьby a very small marginOur team won by the skin of our teeth.
call it quits stop, finishI have worked all day and am exhausted. I‘ve decided to call it quits.
call off cancelThe game was called off because of rain.
call on the carpet reprimandHe was called on the carpet for losing all the financial statements.
call someone’s bluff have someone prove what he saysI don’t think Bob knows as much as he says. I think we should call his bluff.
call the shots be in charge, give ordersWe knew who the supervisor was because she called all the shots.
can fire, dismissI was canned and no longer am working for the company.
can of worms complex problem or complicated situationIt opened up a large can of worms when the company decided to talk about the union contract.
carried away adversely influenced by strong emotionHe was carried away by his effective sales approach and bought the remainder of his products.
catch on understand, figure outI am beginning to catch on to this algebra.
catch someone red-handed find one in the act of doing something wrongThe police came and the bank robber was caught red handed
caught short I didn’t have enough money to pay the billI was caught short.
chalk up record, scoreChalk up another one for the team. They won the championship.
change of heart a change in the way one feels about somethingI wasn’t planning to spend the holidays with my family, but after speaking with my mother, I had a change of heart.
chickenfeed a small amount of moneyTaking the whole family on that cruise is certainly not going to be chickenfeed.
chip in contributeWe are all going to chip in and give the teacher a gift.
chip off the old block child who looks or acts just like his or her parentHe reminds me so much of his father. He’s a chip off the old block.
chip on one’s shoulder quarrelsome attitude, quick to angerI was afraid to ask her for a favor. It looked like she had a chip on her shoulder.
cinch easyAdding and subtracting was always a cinch.
clamp down become stricterBecause he came home from the party so late, his father said he will start to clamp down on his curfew.
clean up make a big profitSince he started his new business, he’s really cleaning up.
clear go throughWhen will this check clear my bank?
clear the air calm anger and remove misunderstandingWe were tired of fighting, so we decided to start talking and clear the air.
close shave narrow escapeIt was a close shave getting out of the burning building.
coast is clear no enemy is in sightTake the present out of the closet when the coast is clear.
come a long way make great progressHe came a long way in his recovery from surgery.
come across find or meet by chanceIf you come across any pictures of my friends from high school, let me know.
come apart at the seams be upset and lose controlI almost came apart at the seams when I saw the taxicab hit my car.
come clean tell the truthI came clean when I knew I was caught in a lie.
come hell or high water no matter what happensCome hell or high water, I’ll for sure be at that meeting.
come off it stop kidding, boasting or making believeHerbert said he was the only one who could do the job. I told him to come off it.
come on strong overwhelm with excessively strong language or personalityThe car salesman came on too strong and angered my wife.
come through with flying colors succeed, win, exceedWhen he graduated with honors, it was evident that he came through with flying color.
comeback to be successful againThe actress made an outstanding comeback on the stage, after her bout with pneumonia.
con обманом вовлекать, кинутьlie, swindle, trickHis boss conned him into working on the weekend for no pay.
cook someone’s goose create big problems for someoneHe knew that when he was caught in a lie his goose was cooked.
cough up give money unwillingly, give up a secretYou said that you would help pay for their wedding. Well, it’s been three months—cough it up.
count on rely on, trustI could always count on my best friend.
cover for someone protect someonePlease cover me, if I end up not knowing what to say at the meeting.
crack downприменить суровые мерыto start ​dealing with ​bad or ​illegal ​behaviour in a more ​severe wayThe police are beginning to crack down on teenagers who are out too late at night
cream of the crop the best of a group, top-choiceThis university only accepts the cream of the crop.
creeps, the fear, uneasinessIt gives me the creeps every time I pass the strange looking house.
crocodile tears show of sorrow that is not really feltHe cried crocodile tears when he discovered that he couldn’t go to the meeting.
crop up happen quickly without warningI had to stay at work late yesterday. Some new work cropped up.
cross one’s mind think of, occur quickly to someoneIt did not cross my mind to thank her for my birthday card.
cut corners limit one’s buyingShe was way over budget for the wedding, so she needed to cut corners.
cut down on use less, reduceMy doctor wants me to cut down on sugar.
cut the mustard succeed, do well enough what needs to be doneHe wasn’t able to cut the mustard so he had to leave the army after only one year.
cut out have talent for, be suited forShe is not cut out for the swim team. She’s too slow.
cut someone down to size prove someone is not as good as he or she thinksJohn thought he was the smartest student in the class. We needed to cut him down to size.
dawn on become clear, begin to understandIt finally dawned on me that I missed our anniversary.
dead-end job position with no futureHe decided to go back to college because he realized he had a dead-end job.
dig up find, recall, discoverHave you dug up any information on the new employee?
dime a dozen common, easily obtainedThose shiny stones are not worth anything. They are a dime a dozen.
dish out criticize, abuse, scoldSometimes he’s nasty and insulting. He can really dish out.
dive disreputable, low class bar or nightclubI did not like where he brought me last night. It was a real dive.
do the trick достичь цели, сработатьbe successful, achieve a good resultThe recipe needs a little help. I think salt may do the trick.
do without live without somethingWhen the television broke, I knew that I could do without it for a week or two.
doctor it up fix temporarilyThe hem on the dress ripped. I doctored it up with some tape.
double check reinvestigate thoroughly, look again for errorsThis column does not add up. I will double check it for a mistake.
double-cross betrayI cannot double-cross my best friend.
dough бабки, капустаmoneyHe makes a lot of dough.
down and out having no money, no successAlthough he was successful a few years ago, today I hear he’s down and out.
down in the dumps unhappyShe’s been down in the dumps ever since she lost her job.
down the drain wasted, lostI don’t like to throw my money down the drain.
down to earth having good sense, practicalMy fiancée is friendly and sensible. She’s very down to earth.
draw the line set the limitHe sets an early curfew for his children. He draws the line at 10:00 PM.
dress up wear one’s best clothingWe need to dress up for this wedding.
dressed to kill расфуфыренныйwear one’s finest clothingShe was dressed to kill when I saw her at the convention last year.
dribs and drabs little by little, small quantitiesShe told us the story in dribs and drabs.
drive at try to say, insinuateWhat were you driving at when you said that insulting comment?
drive someone up a wall make someone crazyMy son is driving me up a wall!
drop in the bucket a small amountThe cost of fixing the sink is a drop in the bucket compared to replacing the whole sink.
drop out one who doesn’t complete a study courseMy cousin dropped out of college.
drown one’s sorrows drink liquor to forget one’s problemsI was so upset last night, that I drowned my sorrows at the bar.
dump get rid of, rejectI can’t believe you dumped your girlfriend.
dwell on talk and think about something all the timeI know it is a big decision, but you shouldn’t dwell on it all day.
eager beaver ambitious, hard workingCharlie gets to work at 7:00 am everyday. He is an eager beaver.
earful interesting gossip, informationMy friend found out about the local politician. I got an earful.
egg someone on push, urgeMy wife didn’t want to take the job, but I egged her on.
elbow grease strength for cleaningI needed to use a lot of elbow grease to get the dirt off the floor.
elbow room enough space to be comfortableIt was so tight in that restaurant. There wasn’t any elbow room.
end up finishI heard that you got lost on your way home last night. Where did you end up?
every Tom, Dick and Harry the average person, nobody specialIt seemed like every Tom, Dick and Harry came out to purchase tickets for the movie.
face the music meet one’s punishment, accept the consequencesWhen he got caught stealing the money from the bank, he realized that soon he would have to face the music.
face up to accept something unpleasant or difficultYou need to face up to the fact that you did not win the election.
fair and square honest, honestlyIwonthe contest fair and square.
fall apart stop working properly, deteriorateHis old car finally fell apart.
fall behind not be able to keep up, fail to maintain a schedule or rate of speedWhen she couldn’t go to school because of her illness, she significantly fell behind in her work.
fall for begin to love, have strong emotions forI fell for her as soon as I met her.
fall off decreaseSales have been falling off since the economy has slowed down.
fall through fail, collapseThe big sale I made at work yesterday fell through this morning.
false alarm warning or report that is untrueShe thought that she was pregnant, but it was a false alarm.
far-fetched unlikely, exaggeratedThe possibility of her receiving a full scholarship is very far-fetched.
fast buck money obtained easily and often unethicallyI know a way we can make a fast buck.
feather in one’s cap proud achievementHis speech went well at the corporate meeting. It was a feather in his cap.
fed up with had enough, disgusted withShe was fed up with his attitude at the office.
feel in one’s bones know by intuition, feel certain without evidenceI believe he is going to get the promotion. I can just feel it in my bones.
feel like a million bucks feel wonderfulI felt like a million bucks when I wore my new suit to the wedding.
feel like two cents feel ashamed or embarrassedI felt like two cents when I dropped the birthday cake on the floor.
feel sorry for pityShe felt sorry for him when she heard the news of his accident.
fender bender minor accidentI had a fender bender on my way to work this morning.
fiddle around work without a definite plan and knowledgeThe clock was broken, so he fiddled around with it until he got it to work.
figure out try to understand, solveShe couldn’t figure out one of her math problems.
fill someone in tell a person the detailsWe had the meeting yesterday when you were out. Let me fill you in on what you missed.
find fault complain, criticizeShe always seems to find fault with any of my friends.
fish out of water someone who does not fit inShe felt like a fish out of water when she went to the party in her formal dress while everyone else was wearing jeans.
fishy suspicious, false soundingYour company is giving you a month off from work? That sounds a bit fishy.
fix someone up arrange a date for someoneI fixed her up with my best friend.
flip one’s lid get angry, go crazy, become very excitedHe flipped his lid when he found out his son stole some candy from the store.
floor someone surprise, confuseI was floored when I found out they had made me a surprise birthday party.
flop failureHis business ended up being a flop.
fly off the handle get angryHer mother flew off the handle when she found out that her daughter dropped out of college.
fly the coop leave suddenly, run awayAs soon as he turned eighteen years old, he flew the coop.
fly-by-night unreliable, untrustworthyI don’t want to buy my computer from that store. It’s a fly-by-night company; they may not be in business next year.
foot in the door opening, hopeful beginning of successIt is not my idea of a perfect job, but at least I have my foot in the door with a great company.
foot the bill payWho is going to foot the bill for the office renovations?
for a song at a low price, cheapHe got his new car for a song.
for the birds terrible, awfulI work long hours and hardly get paid. This job is for the birds.
for the time being at the present timeFor the time being, let’s not make any changes to the report.
free-for-all mayhem, disorderWhen the teacher left for a meeting, it was a free-for-all in the classroom.
freeload get things that others pay forWhen my friend moved into my apartment, stayed for a year and never contributed any money, I knew he was a freeloader.
from the bottom of one’s heart with great feeling, sincerelyMy sister thanked me fromthe bottom ofher heart for saving her dog’s life.
from the left field unexpectedly, with an odd or unclear connection to the subjectWe were in the middle of a business meeting when, out from left field, he asked about the weather.
from scratch from the very beginning, starting with raw materialsThis chocolate was not made from a cake mix, she made it from scratch.
fume be angryWhen I heard that she was talking about me to other people, I was just fuming.
gall нахальствоshameless, insolent attitudeShe spent all of her money on clothes and music, and then she asked to borrow money for groceries. She has gall.
game willing, readyOkay, you want to make plans to go to China? Okay, I’m game.
get a grip on oneself take control of one’s feelingsWhen he lost the soccer game, he couldn’t stop crying. I told him to get a grip on himself.
get a kick out of enjoyI get a kick out of it every time I see her dance.
get a load of have a good look atGet a load of those fancy cars driving down the street.
get ahead become successfulShe is saving all her money, so that one day she can get ahead.
get along manageHe realized that he was able to get along quite well without his partner.
get around to finally find time to do somethingI have put it off for months, but I finally got around to cleaning the windows.
get at mean, hintYou tell me that I am slow at work. What are trying to get at.
get away with murder not be punished for wrongdoingHe’s the boss’s son and comes in late everyday, but we can’t complain. He’s getting away with murder.
get cold feet be afraid at the last minute, lose confidenceI was prepared to make a speech, but I got cold feet when I saw how many people were going to hear it.
get down to brass tacks begin important work or businessGet off the phone so that we can discuss business. Let’s get down to brass tacks.
get even get revenge, settle the scoreI was so upset when she insulted me last week. I want to get even with her.
get the runaround be sent from place to place without getting the information neededIt took me four hours to renew my driver’s license. I was sent to almost every department and seemed to get the runaround.
get in on the ground floor start from the beginning so you’ll have full advantage of any favorable outcomeHe is a very wealthy man. He was one Microsoft’s first employees and got in on the ground floor.
get in the swing of things adapt or adjust to a new environmentAfter working two weeks in the new department, I finally got into the swing of things.
get off the ground make a successful beginning, go aheadHe will finally take his project and get it off the ground in the coming year.
get off one’s back leave someone alone, don’t botherShe reminded me that I had to prepare for my trip out of town. I wish she would get off my back.
get off on the wrong foot make a bad startHaving a fight with a co-worker on my first day of work was not a good idea. I got off on the wrong foot.
get off the ground make progress, make a good startI finally got my business off the ground.
get one’s goat make someone disgusted, annoyed, angrySitting in traffic for 5 hours really got my goat.
get out from under end a worrisome situationI am glad that I amworkingagainand making money. I finally got out fromunder mybills.
get out of withdrawI would really like to get out of going to the holiday party.
get out of hand lose controlThe party really got out of hand when they started drinking alcohol.
get something off one’s chest unburden yourself, tell what’s bothering youI feel better ever since I told him my problem and got it off my chest.
get the ax be firedMy company finally realized that he wasn’t doing his job. They gave him the ax.
get the show on the road start a project or workWe have been discussing unimportant things all morning. Let’s get the show on the road and start getting down to business.
get to the bottom of find out the real causeAfter talking to my friend for an hour, I finally got to the bottom of why he wasangryat me.
get under someone’s skin annoy, bother, upsetHe has a difficult and annoying personality and always got under my skin.
get up and go ambition, energy, enthusiasmShe always seems so excited and motivated at work. She’s got a lot of get up and go.
get up on the wrong side of the bed be in a bad moodMy son has been cranky all day. I think he got uponthe wrong side of the bed.
get what is coming to one what one deserves, good or badAfter stealing so much money from the charity, I really hope he gets what’s coming to him.
get wind of find out, hear gossip or rumors aboutI got wind of the fact that they will be closing down our department.
give a hoot careI don’t give a hoot who wins the election.
give the cold shoulder be unfriendly to, ignoreI was so mad at my cousin, that I gave her the cold shoulder at the wedding reception.
give in do as others want, surrenderI wanted to paint the room blue, my wife wanted yellow. I had to give in.
give it one’s best shot try very hardI gave it my best shot, but I still didn’t make the team.
give someone a break give someone an opportunity or chanceThe actor struggled for many years. Finally, someone gave him a break and put him in a movie.
give someone a hand helpI couldn’t work my regular hours. A co-worker gave me a hand and switched schedules with me.
give someone a piece of one’s mind say what you really think when angryI was so mad that he was late for the wedding, I gave him a piece of my mind.
give someone his walking papers dismiss, fire, send awayShe got her walking papers on Friday and won’t be coming back to work.
give someone the green light give permission to go ahead with a projectWe were finally given the green light to begin setting up the new project.
go cold turkey stop abruptlyMy doctor really wants me to quit smoking. I decided to stop and go cold turkey.
go Dutch each person pay for himselfIf we have dinner together, I insist that we go Dutch.
go from bad to worse deteriorateSales have been very slow this season, but this was the worst week of all. It seems like it’s going from bad to worse.
go out of one’s way делать все, что от тебя зависитmake a special effort, do more than necessaryI went out of my way to make it easier for you.
go over перечитыватьexamineBefore I submit the report, I want to go over it one more time for mistakes.
go over big be very successfulDo you think my idea to have a birthday party for our teacher will go over big?
go overboard overact, be recklessI’ve never seen so many flowers at a wedding. Do you think maybe you’ve gone overboard?
go steady go out with only one person romanticallyWho did you go steady with in high school?
go to bat for assist, helpI have overheard that she may be fired from her job. I think she is a hard worker and I want her to stay. I’m going to bat for her.
go to pot deteriorate, become undisciplined, unkemptHe has quit his job, gained weight, and I think may be abusing drugs. It looks like he’s really gone to pot.
go under the knife have surgeryI’ll be going under the knife next week for some minor surgery.
go up in smoke disappear, fail to materializeShe was going to go on a vacation, but her mother got sick. Her plans have gone up in smoke.
go-getter ambitious personShe is the most successful salesperson I’ve ever seen. She’s a real go-getter.
goldmine worth a lot of money, successfulHis business is a major success and will only get bigger every year. He is sitting on a goldmine.
goner someone in a lot of troubleHis boss found out he has been stealing from the cash register. He’s a goner.
good sport a person who loses wellEven though I beat you in the game, you still congratulated me. You are a good sport.
goof off not want to work, be lazyI am tired of working so hard. I just want to stay home and goof off.
grab 40 winks I felt so sleepy after mylunch, I decided to grab 40 winks
grand штука$1000It cost me a grand to stay in the luxury hotel.
greasy spoon inexpensive restaurant with mediocre foodI hated dinner last night. It turned out being a greasy spoon.
gung ho enthusiastic, eagerHe thinks his team is the best in the league. He is really gung ho this season.
guts courageHe has a lot of guts to stand up to management.
guy manThat guy over there is my neighbor.
half baked бездумныйfoolish, sillyOpening up a store which sells only tape will not be successful. It is a half baked idea.
hand it to someone поддержатьgive credit, acknowledgeI’ve got to hand it to you. Your idea to open a store in this location was great.
hand over fist rapidlyHe’s making money hand over fist.
hand something on a silver platter give a person something that has not been earnedHis father is president of the university and his education was handed to him on a silver platter.
hand to mouth barely able to cover basic expensesThat family is struggling since the father lost his job. I hear that they’re living hand to mouth.
handful a lot of troubleMy three year old runs around the house and often breaks things. He’s a real handful.
handle with kid gloves be very careful, tactfulHis wife gets upset very easily. He has to handle her with kid gloves.
handy can fix things, usefulShe’s very handy around the house. If anything breaks, she can fix it easily.
hang in there be patient, waitI know you want to quit school, but hang in there. You only have 4 more weeks before your graduation.
hard feelings anger, bitternessI know we had our differences, but I hope there are not any hard feelings.
hard up in desperate need of somethingEveryone comes to her desk and takes supplies. I know she’s hard up for pencils.
harp on dwell on the subject, repeat, persistI know losing your job was awful, but don’t harp on it. You are only making yourself more depressed.
has-been a person once popular but no longer in public favorSince the movie star was found guilty of a crime, I haven’t seen him in any motion pictures. He’s a has-been.
hassle botherPlease stay home tonight. I don’t want the hassle of having to bring you and pick you up from the party.
have a ball have a good time, enjoy one’s selfShe had a ball at her holiday party.
have a crush on be attracted toI have had a crush on her since 5th grade.
have a fit become upsetShe’ll have a fit if she finds out you broke her watch.
have a good head on one’s shoulders besmartorsensibleYou have a good headon your shoulders and I’msureyou’ll do fine in college.
have a mind of one’s own be able to think independentlyAlthough we all voted one way, she voted in a completely opposite direction. She’s really got a mind of her own.
have a prayer have a chanceHe’s not good enough to make it on the team. He doesn’t have a prayer.
have been around to be experienced, sophisticatedShe knows all about office politics. She has been around for awhile.
have egg on one’s face be embarrassedShe called in sick to work yesterday, but when I saw her at the store she had egg on her face.
have it coming deserve a punishmentI didn’t study for the exam and I failed. I had it coming.
have it made be sure of success, have everythingEver since she won the lottery, she can do whatever she wants. She has it made.
have it out with someone discuss a conflict or misunderstanding with the other person involvedMy friend and I had a big fight last week. This morning I had it out with him and now everything is okay.
have one’s feet on the ground be practical, sensible, stableShe’ll make a great wife and mother because she has got both feet on the ground.
have one’s hand in the till steal from one’s employerThe reason he has been buying such nice new clothes is that he’s got his hand in the till.
have one’s head in the clouds have unrealistic dreams, lost in thoughtEven though she is a terrible actress, she thinks someday she will be a movie star. She has got her head in the clouds.
have one’s heart set on desire greatlyThe boy had his heart set on getting a puppy.
have someone’s number know what kind of person someone isHe doesn’t think anyone knows, but I know he stole the material for the book. I’ve got his number.
have something up one’s sleeve kept secretly ready for the right timeIf the electricity goes out during the birthday party, don’t worry. I’ve got something up my sleeve.
have the heart to be thoughtless enoughI know there was just a death in her family. I don’t have the heart to ask her when she is coming back to work.
have two strikes against someone be in a difficult situation with little chance of successHe wanted the job but he can’t write and he has difficulty speaking on the phone. He’s got two strikes against him already.
haywire беспорядочный, расстроенныйbroken, confused, awryThe plan was in place to surprise by boss on his birthday, but it all went haywire.
heart-to-heart intimate, honestI needed to speak him about a problem I was having. We had a heart-to-heart talk.
high and dry alone, without help, strandedAfter everyone left the party, I was all alone to clean up. I was left high and dry.
high and low every placeI can’t seem to find my keys. I’ve looked high and low.
high-brow intellectual, cultured personEveryone seemed very high-brow at the cocktail reception.
hit a successHer book was a hit and sold a million copies.
hit below the belt hurt someone cruelly and unfairlyI have been upset ever since she made that awful comment to me. It really hit below the belt.
hit it off enjoy one another’s company, get alongAlthough we just met, we really hit it off and will probably see each other again.
hit the bottle drink alcoholHe hits the bottle every time he has some family trouble.
hit the ceiling get angryI hit the ceiling when I found out that she broke my computer.
hit the nail on the head arrive at the correct answer, make a precise analysisWhen you named the person who was responsible for our losses this quarter, you really hit the nail on the head.
hit the sack go to bedI was so tired last night, that I hit the sack as soon as I got home.
hit the spot refresh or satisfyWe sat in the sun and hadn’t had a drink all day. That cold glass of water really hit the spot.
hogwash nonsenseThe idea that aliens landed in New York City is a bunch of hogwash.
hold a grudge not forgive someone for an insult or injuryEven though they broke up 10 years ago, she still holds a grudge and will not speak to him.
hold back conceal, hideHe held back his feelings and acted as if everything was alright.
hold one’s horses waitI can’t leave the office yet. I’m waiting for an important phone call. Just hold your horses.
hold up delay, postponeSorry I’m late. I was held up in traffic.
holy mackerel! вот это да!used to express strong feeling of surpriseHoly Mackerel! Look at that man’s motorcycle.
hook, line and sinker without question or doubtI told a lie to my teacher. He bought it hook, line and sinker.
hot 1 stolenHe bought a great television from a guy on the street for $50.00. The television must have been hot.
hot 2 in great demandThis was the hottest movie out this weekend.
hot air nonsense or exaggerated talkI don’t believe a word that man says. He is full of hot air.
hound continually botherShe hounded me until I finally agreed to say yes.
hush-hush secretThe birthday party is a surprise. Please don’t tell anyone, it’s hush-hush.
hustler person who gets money aggressively or unethicallyHe won’t work. If he needs money, he’ll hustle someone.
hyper very energetic, anxious, unable to sit stillIt is impossible to bring that child to a restaurant. He is too hyper.
ill at ease неловкийI am shySo when I go to a cocktail party I am ill at ease.
in a bind в труднейшем положенииIn trouble no matter what you doShe committed to help two different people at the same time. She is in a bind.
in a jam in troubleHe is in a jam and needs some help toget out of it.
in a nutshell brieflyShe spoke to us for at least an hour and told us a long story. I would have preferred that we heard it in a nutshell.
in a pinch okay, when nothing else is availableIf you don’t have a needle to sew something together, a safety pin will work in a pinch.
in a rush in a hurryI can’t find my wallet and keys and I’m late for a meeting. I’m in a rush.
in a rut always doing the same thingMy job is very boring and uninteresting. I’m depressed and think I am in a rut.
in advance ahead of timeLet’s call the movie theatre in advance and see if they have any tickets left.
in black and white in writingThe salesman said that he would give me a 5 year warranty on my purchase. I told him to put it in black and white.
in hot water in troubleI am going to be in hot water when she finds out that I dented her car.
in nothing flat quickly, in a short timeWhen he heard that I was taking him out to dinner, he got dressed in nothing flat.
in seventh heaven very happyI begin my month long vacation tomorrow. I’m in seventh heaven.
in someone’s shoes in another person’s place or positionYou cannot pass judgment on someone until you’ve stepped into their shoes.
in stitches laughingHe is the funniest person I know. He always keeps me in stitches.
in the bag certain, sure, definiteThe job interview went very well and I think I will be hired. I am confident that it’s in the bag.
in the doghouse in troubleMy wife and I had a big fight last night. I’m in the doghouse.
in the long run in the end, as a resultIf you study hard in school, in the long run you will be successful.
in the market for wanting or ready to buyWe are in the market for a new mattress.
in the red losing moneyOur company is in the red and may be going out of business.
in the same boat in a similar situationHe can’t pay his bills either. He is in the same boat as you.
iron out work outEven though the two men do not get along, they are both willing to iron out their problems.
jack up raise pricesLast week the department store jacked up all their prices.
jack-of-all-trades person who can do many kinds of workMy friend is a jack-of-all-trades. He knows how to fix everything.
jalopy old car usually in poor conditionI finally sold my jalopy and bought a new car.
jam-packed crowded, fullMy new computer can do so many different things. It’s jam-packed with features.
the jitters anxiety, nervousnessShe knew the test was going to be very difficult and she had the jitters all day.
John Hancock signatureThe car salesman asked the customer to put his John Hancock on the bottom of the contract.
jump down someone’s throat criticize angrily, hastilyHe’s very angry today. Every time I ask himaquestion he jumps down mythroat.
jump the gun start before you shouldYou will need more facts before you go into business. Don’t jump the gun.
jump to conclusions make quick but unjustified conclusionsDon’t jump to conclusions and assume that all well-dressed men are rich.
keep a stiff upper lip have courage, be braveEven though he thought he was going to be terminated from his job, he kept a stiff upper lip.
keep in touch communicate, talk or write to each otherEven though we won’t see each other for six months, let’s try to keep in touch.
keep on continueIf you are not hungry, don’t keep on eating.
keep one’s fingers crossed wish for good luckHis mother kept her fingers crossed so that her son would make the team.
keep one’s head above water be able to exist on one’s income, pay billsEven though she only made a meager salary, she was still able to buy clothes, go to restaurants, and keep her head above water.
keep one’s nose clean After he was released from prison he stayed out of troubleHis parents were glad that he kept his nose clean.
keep one’s shirt on be patient, waitI know it’s taking me a long time to finish my work, but keep your shirt on.
keep something under your hat keep something a secretShe was given information which was meant to be private, so she kept it under her hat
keep tabs on watch, checkMy neighbor is always looking out her window and keeping tabs on me.
Keep up with the Joneses try to equal your neighbor’s lifestyleHe works many long hours just so he can keep up with the Joneses.
kick in the pants rejection, criticismSteve was always kind to someone who was poor and unfortunate. When that person made a lot of money, he ignored Steve. Steve got a kick in the pants.
kick oneself regretI could kick myself for not buying that stock which tripled in value.
kick something around discuss, think aboutWe didn’t know which way to direct the company, so we kicked some ideas around.
kick the bucket dieThe old man kicked the bucket when he was 110 years old.
kid a young personI have two kids. They are 10 and 3 years old.
kid around fool, play, jokeDon’t kid around with Mary. She is in a very bad mood.
kiss something goodbye see something ruined or lostWhen I saw the photo album fall off of the boat and into the water, I knew it was lost forever and I just kissed it goodbye.
knock it off stopHe wouldn’t stop tickling me, so I told him to knock it off.
knock one dead greatly impress, surpriseWhen the actor was preparing to go on stage, I told me to knock them dead.
knock one for a loop surpriseI didn’t expect the movie to have that sort of ending. It knocked me for a loop.
knock one’s head against the wall waste time in futile effort to improve or change somethingTeaching teenagers to drive responsibly is like knocking my head against a wall.
knock oneself out make a great effortShe worked many hours getting ready for the party and knocked herself out.
knockout, a a beautiful person or thingThat beauty queen is a knockout.
know if one is coming or going be able to think clearly, know what to doThere were so many students signing up at registration, I didn’t know if I was coming or going.
know-how experience and knowledgeHe has been building houses for many years and has a lot of know-how.
kosher true, authenticThe financial statements say that your business is making a lot of money. Are the amounts all kosher?
land on one’s feet come out of a bad situation successfullyShe just came off of a terrible divorce. She’s doing well now and it seems that she landed on her feet.
last straw, the the last insult or injury that one can endureHis son watched TV all day and didn’t work. When he started to gamble, that was the last straw.
lay out spend or payWill you lay out the money for the meal and I will pay you back tomorrow?
learn the ropes acquire special knowledge of a jobNow that you have started your new position with the company, it will probably take you a few months to learn the ropes.
leave a bad taste in one’s mouth make a bad impression, make or feel disgustedI thought the salesman was obnoxious. He left a bad taste in my mouth.
leave someone holding the bag put someone in an awkward position, leave someone else to take the blameThe children ate all of the cookies and ran away. Peter was the only one who remained and was left holding the bag.
lemon merchandise that doesn’t workMy new car has needed repair four times since I bought it. I ended up buying a lemon.
let bygones be bygones. Forget differences that happened in the pastEven though my friend and I had a big fight, I told him we should let bygones be bygones.
let it ride continue without changing a situationDon’t say anything to him now. I don’t want to hurt his feelings. Just let it ride.
let on reveal, inform, tellShe let on that she knew my secret.
let one’s hair down be informal, relaxedAfter the business meeting when our supervisor left, we spoke about our personal lives and let our hair down.
let someone off the hook excuse from a penalty or promiseBecause this was his first criminal offense, he was let off the hook.
let the cat out of the bag tell a secretHis surprise birthday party was cancelled because someone let the cat out of the bag.
Let the chips fall where they may. Act regardless of consequencesThe police were asking him about the robbery. He knew he had to tell everything he knew and let the chips fall as they may.
like a ton of bricks strongly, forcefullyWhen I was told that my favorite uncle died, it hit him like a ton of bricks.
live high off the hog have many luxuries, be very comfortableWhen you see their new home, you’ll know that they live high off the hog.
live it up pursue pleasure, have a good timeNow that school is over, I want to live it up this weekend.
live wire active exciting personPeople always want her at their parties because she is a live wire.
loaded having lots of moneyEver since he started his new business, he appears to be loaded.
loaded drunkI can tell by the way she spoke that she was loaded.
look down one’s nose at think someone is worthless or unimportant, show contemptShe thinks she is better than everyone else. She always looks down her nose at others.
look into investigate, checkI’m going to look into the possibility of getting a scholarship for college.
look up improve, getting betterSince he is putting in more hours at work, his financial situation is looking up.
loony bin insane asylumI couldn’t believe how crazy she acted last night. She belongs in the loony bin!
loot moneyHow much loot do you need to buy that fancy car?
lose one’s marbles go insane, act irrationallyAnyone who insults his boss has lost his marbles.
lose one’s shirt lose all one’s moneyHe put his lifetime savings into the restaurant. When it failed, he lost his shirt.
lose track of someone lose contact, no know where someone isI have lost track of him since high school and have no idea where he lives now.
louse up ruinI’ve worked on this painting for weeks, but when my paintbrush slipped out of my hand, I loused up the painting.
lowdown the true storyI heard that she was married before but didn’t know why she divorced. Give me the lowdown.
lower the boom stop completely, punish strictlyWhen the father heard that the children were not doing their homework, he lowered the boom.
make a bundle make a lot of moneyShe made a bundle selling donuts to the construction workers.
make a dent in make progressI have got a lot of work to do, but I made a dent in it last night.
make a federal case out of overreact, take strong measures for a minor problemI’m sorry for spilling some water on your desk, but you don’t have to make a federal case out of it.
make a go of succeed, produce good resultsAlthough this new business is risky, I’m going to try to make a go of it.
make a hit be successfulPeople loved my new brownies and wanted the recipe. I guess I made a hit.
make a killing gain a large amount of money at one timeShe made a killing in the stock market last year.
make a monkey out of someone cause to look foolishThe lawyer was shrewd and made a monkey out of his opponent’s client.
make a mountain out of a molehill make a big problem out of a small oneIt wasn’t difficult, it was easy. Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill.
make ends meet balance one’s budget, meet one’s paymentsHis expenses are so high, that even though he makes a lot of money, his family has difficulty making ends meet.
make fun ofосмеиватьridiculeIt’s not nice to make fun of other people.
make it up to someone пытаться загладить свою винуcompensate for an unfulfilled promiseI am so sorry that we have to cancel our plans tonight, but I will try to make it up to you.
make of something interpret, figure out, think ofWhat do you make of his decision to drop out of college?
make one’s hair stand on end frighten, horrifyThe extreme poverty in that country would make your hair stand on end.
make one’s mouth water look or smell very good, make one want to eat or drink something one sees or smellsThe smell of garlic outside the restaurant made my mouth water.
make one’s own way rely on one’s own abilitiesShe had no help from anyone. She had to make her own way.
make out do, progress, succeedHow are you making out with your new responsibilities at the office?
make sense be comprehensibleWhat’s the word in English that’s spelled yrkszwa…it doesn’t make sense.
make sure see about something yourself, checkWe are leaving on our vacation, and I want to make sure that you locked all the doors.
make the best of accept a bad situation and do as well as possible under the circumstancesEven though our heating system broke, let’s light a fire in the fireplace and make the best of it.
make up one’s mind decideShe hasn’t made up her mind as to what university she will be attending.
make waves upset the status quo, create a disturbanceHe likes to avoid controversy and usually doesn’t make waves.
man-to-man frank, directDon’t discuss the problem with me. Go to your boss’s office and talk about it man-to-man.
mean business be seriousHe told his son that he had to finish all of his homework before he went out to play and he meant business.
mess disorderly, cluttered condition; bad or confused situationThere were clothes and food all over his apartment and it was a mess.
miss a trick take advantage of every situationAs soon as her boss left the building, she begantomakepersonal calls. She doesn’t miss a trick.
miss out on lose an opportunity, miss a worthwhile eventIt is too bad you couldn’t make it to the reunion because you missed out on a good time.
miss the boat lose an opportunityIt’s too bad he didn’t buy gold when it was cheap. Now, it is very expensive and he really missed the boat.
mobbed crowdedThe shopping mall was mobbed the day before Christmas.
mooch borrow, beg, get without payingShe says that she doesn’t smoke, but she is always mooching cigarettes from her friends.
mouthful a true and impressive statementYou said a mouthful when you admitted that she was the smartest girl in her class.
mudslinging making malicious remarks to damage someone’s reputationThere is a lot of mudslinging going on in politics today.
mum’s the word don’t talk about what was saidI don’t want you to say anything about our discussion. Mum’s the word.
murder a difficult or painful ordealGetting her master’s degree while she worked full-time was murder.
nag, a a persistently urging personHe complains that his wife is always nagging him to do things around the house.
name someone after give the child the name of an admired personMy son is named after my grandfather.
nest egg extra money savedThey have a small nest egg saved up for their vacation.
nightcap, a last drink one has before leaving or prior to sleepingShe ordered some brandy as a nightcap.
nincompoop a stupid person, a foolHe doesn’t know how to act well around other people. He’s a nincompoop!
nip in the bud prevent at the startWhen she saw that her little boy was snacking between meals, she decided to nip it in the bud.
nitpick look for very minor errors or problemsEvery time she reads one of his reports, she is always nitpicking on the most minor points.
nitty-gritty the essence or important partWe’ve been discussing your problem for an hour, but we finally got down to the nitty-gritty.
nitwit idiotHe messes up everything in our department and is such a nitwit.
no bed of roses uncomfortable, unhappy situationTheir marriage is no bed of roses. They seem to always be fighting.
no dice no, certainly notI like living in this area. When my children wanted to move, I said ‘no dice’.
no picnic not pleasantHe works very hard at the factory. He says it is no picnic.
nobody’s fool smart competent personShe’s very smart. She’s nobody’s fool.
not on your life definitely not, no wayThere is not a chance I am going to drive 4 hours to go to that party…not on your life.
not so hot not very goodShe boasted about her pumpkin pie, but I thought it was not so hot.
nothing to sneeze at something not trivial, to be taken seriouslyThey offered him a lot of money to take this new position. He was going to give it a lot of thought because it was nothing to sneeze at.
nuts about in love with, enthusiastic aboutI’m nuts about our new neighbors.
odds and ends miscellaneous itemsI have some odds and ends around my house that I would like to sell.
off and on occasionallyWe are not very good friends anymore. I see him off and on.
off base inaccurateIf you think I paid one thousand dollars for this coat, you are way off base.
off color in bad taste, rude, dirtyHe told an off-color joke at the party that embarrassed my wife.
off one’s rocker crazyHe is off of his rocker if he thinks I’m going to help him decorate for the party.
off the hook out of something, freed from an embarrassing situationI don’t want to have dinner with him. Let’s tell him that we will be out of town so that we will get off the hook.
off the record privately, unofficially, not for public announcementI need to tell you about one of my accounts, but it needs to be off the record.
off the top of one’s head from memory, spontaneouslyOff the top of my head, I think her last name begins with an ‘M’.
old flame former boyfriend or girlfriendShe bumped into an old flame at the shopping mall.
on a shoestring with very little moneyWe are trying to decorate our home on a shoestring.
on Easy Streetв шоколадеhaving a pleasant, secure lifeEver since his mother won the lottery, they have been on easy street.
on guard careful, waryIt is a very important meeting and we must think before we speak. We must be on guard.
on one’s last leg at the end of one’s strength of usefulnessMy car is over ten years old and it’s on its last leg.
on one’s shoulders one’s responsibilityThe president has a lot of problems on his shoulders.
on pins and needles nervous, excitedWhen I found out that the movie star was coming to the party, I was on pins and needles.
on shaky ground unstableThe buyers aren’t sure if they really want to buy the car. I think the sale is on shaky ground.
on the ball paying attention and doing things wellShe always gets her paperwork submitted on time. She is always on the ball.
on the blink not workingThe ice is melting in our freezer. I think it is on the blink.
on the edge of one’s seat in nervous suspenseI have wanted to see this movie ever since I read the book. Now that it is about to start, I am on the edge of my seat.
on the fritz not working correctly, out of orderThe ice is melting in our freezer. I think it is on the fritz.
on the go busy running aroundI won’t be home all day. I have many errands to run and will be on the go.
on the house provided free by a bar or restaurantSince I am good friends with the owner of the restaurant, dinner was on the house.
on the level honestThey are not telling you the whole story. They are not on the level.
on the q.t. secretlyI was just told that I will be promoted to vice-president but nobody knows about it yet. Please don’t tell anyone and keep it on the q.t.
on the rocks breaking up, ruinedThe couple is always fighting and I wasn’t surprised to hear that their marriage is on the rocks.
on the same wavelength communicating, thinking similarlyThey didn’t understand each other. They were not on the same wavelength.
on the spot in a difficult or embarrassing situationI was put on the spot and expected to make a toast at the anniversary party.
on the wagon abstaining from liquorHe used to drink a lot of beer and wine, but now he is on the wagon.
on the warpath very angry, looking for troubleWhen Mary saw John with another woman, Mary went on the warpath.
once in a blue moon раз в сто лет, в кои-то векиoccasionallyHe doesn’t watch television often. Only once in a blue moon.
once-over quick look or examinationI didn’t have time to read the contract, so I gave it a once-over.
one for the books very unusual, remarkableShe hates to be around children and she’s an elementary school teacher. That’s one for the books.
one’s cup of tea something one enjoys, special interestI don’t like going to the opera. It’s not my cup of tea.
one’s hands are tied one is unable to helpI would like to lend you money, but we just bought a car and a house. My hands are tied.
one’s heart is in the right (wrong) place kindhearted, sympathetic or well-meaningAlthough she makes a lot of mistakes, her heart is in the right place.
one’s heart is in one’s mouth one is nervous, fearful, or anxiousI’m speaking in front of 200 people tonight and am very nervous. My heart is in my mouth.
one-track mind mind focused on a single ideaAll he ever thinks about is football. He has a one-tracked mind.
out of line not usual, incorrect, unacceptableShe tells her husband what he can and cannot do. I think she is out of line.
out of sorts in a bad mood, irritableI haven’t’ been feeling very happy lately. I am out of sorts.
out of the blue unexpectedly, by surprise, from nowhereI haven’t’ heard from my college roommate in 10 years. Last week, out of the blue, he called me.
out of the woods no longer in danger, in the clearThe doctors say she no longer has the disease. Her prognosis is very good and she is now out of the woods.
out of this world wonderful, terrificThis chocolate cake is the best I have ever had. It’s out of this world.
out on a limb in a dangerous, exposed position, one’s ideas are openly knownBy speaking up against her boss, she is putting herself out on a limb.
over a barrel in a helpless, trapped positionHe saw me cash my paycheck and then asked me for a loan. I could not refuse. He had me over a barrel.
over one’s dead body under no condition, neverI work six days a week. Only over my dead body will I work another day.
pad the bill add false expensesThe insurance company found out that the dentist had padded the bill.
pain in the neck bothersome, annoying thing or personMy little brother is a pain in the neck.
pan out happen favorablyThis new business is risky, but hopefully it will pan out.
pass away dieI miss the neighbor who passed away last year.
pass out faintIhaven’t eaten all day, and I think I amgoingto pass out.
pass the buck shift responsibility to othersI called their customer service line, but everyone kept on passing the buck.
patch up fixEven though we had a fi ht, let’s try to patch things up.
pay through the nose pay too muchI had to pay through the nose to stay at that fancy resort.
peanuts small amount of moneyIt only cost peanuts to fix the scrape on the car.
pep talk a talk to arouse enthusiasmThe coach gave the players a pep talk before the game.
perk up emerge from a depressed or uninterested moodWhen the owner of the company walks into the office, try to perk up.
pick up obtain, getPlease pick up a gallon of milk when you go to the grocery store.
pick up the tab pay the billSince he came into a lot of money, he always picks up the tab whenever we go out to dinner.
pick-me-up, a a drink or snack taken to refresh oneself“You look tired. Drink this, it’s a good pick-me-up”.
piece of cake, a easyShe has also been good at mathematics. She thinks algebra is a piece of cake.
pile up accumulate, put things on top of each otherTry not to let the work on your desk pile up.
pill an annoying, disagreeable personShe is always mad about something and unpleasant to be around. She is such a pill.
pin someone down make someone tell the truth or agree to somethingHe needed to pin her down as to the date for the meeting.
pinch pennies be thrifty, careful how you spend moneyIf you spend your time pinching pennies, eventually, you’ll have a lot of money.
pink slip notice of dismissalHe was fired and received a pink slip on Friday and will not be showing up for work on Monday.
pinpoint find exact location or causeWe need to pinpoint the cause of the problem.
pitch in helpEveryone needs to pitch in so that we can get the work done and go home.
pits, the the worst, anything that is very badHaving to clean out my basement is the pits.
play hooky stay away from school or work without permissionHe played hooky from work so that he can do things around his house.
play it by ear make your decision according to the situationI’m not sure when I will arrive at the restaurant, so let’s play it by ear.
play the field go out with many people romanticallyShe is not dating anyone seriously and is still playing the field.
play up to someone flatter or please for selfish reasonsHe is playing up to his boss because he is hoping to move up in the company.
play with fire invite danger, troubleYou are playing with fire if you drive with your car on ‘empty’.
plenty of a lot of, abundanceShe had plenty of food at the party, so everyone ate a lot.
point out explain, show, call attention toLet me point out the problem with your plan.
pop the question ask to marryHe popped the question and asked her to marry him when they were scuba diving.
pound the pavement look for a jobIt took him 3 months of pounding the pavement before he landed a job.
pour it on thick flatter profusely, exaggerateHe poured it on thick to his boss, because he wanted to get a raise.
pull a fast one cheat, deceiveShe pulled a fast one when she got away with stealing all the company’s profits.
pull punches hide unpleasant facts or make them seem goodShe told him why she wouldn’t date him anymore, and she didn’t pull any punches.
pull someone’s leg trick, playfully tease, foolIf you think I believe that you won the lottery, your pulling my leg.
pull something off accomplish something remarkableHe never thought he would be able to put on a show, but he pulled it off.
pull strings secretly use influence and powerI’ll see if I can pull strings so that you can get an interview.
pull the rug out from under spoil someone’s plans, withdraw supportI felt like someone pulled the rug out from under me when he said he wouldn’t pay my tuition.
pull the wool over one’s eyes deceive, misleadHe pulled the wool over her eyes and married her just for her money.
pull up stakes move to another locationThey pulled up stakes last year and moved to another state.
push someone around boss, make a person do what you wantI don’t like it when she pushes me around.
put a damper on discourage, spoil a person’s funI hate putting a damper on the party, but it is getting late and everyone has to go home.
put anything past someone be surprised by what someone doesI wouldn’t put it past her to talk about me behind my back.
put down make someone look bad, criticizeHe embarrassed her by putting her down in front of her family.
put in one’s two cents give one’s opinionI put in my two cents, so that everyone knew how I felt.
put one’s cards on the table be frank, tell everythingShe put her cards on the table and told everyone what she really thought.
put one’s finger on find precisely, remember exactlyShe didn’t know what was causing the problem, but she finally put her finger on it.
put one’s foot down object strongly, take firm preventative actionI cleaned the whole house. When she told me that I had to clean the garage too, I finally put my foot down.
put one’s foot in one’s mouth speak carelessly, make a rude or insensitive commentI said something that embarrassed my friend, and really put my foot in my mouth.
put our heads together confer, discussLet’s put our heads together and figure out a way to solve this problem.
put someone in his or her place scold someone for rude, improper behaviorWhen she embarrassed me in front of my friends, I angrily answered her back and put her in her place.
put someone on a pedestal idolize, worshipHe has great respect for his coach, and has put him on a pedestal.
put something out of one’s mind try not to think about itI’m worried about next week’s test, but I am going to relax and put it out of my mind.
put through the wringer cause severe stressThe attorney asked me many questions and put me through the wringer.
put two and two together make a conclusion knowing the factsShe put two and two together and realized that he was stealing from the company.
put up a good front pretend to be happy, fool people about one’s statusEven though she is upset about the fight she had with her friend, she put up a good front and smiled the whole time they were together.
put up with patiently accept, endureHe has had to put up with her terrible disposition if he wanted to remain married to her.
quack an ignorant or fraudulent doctorThe man paid the doctor $1000.00 to fix his problem, but he still had a lot of pain. I think that doctor is a quack.
rack one’s brain try to hard to think or rememberI racked my brain to remember who I was supposed to call back.
racket easy, well-paying job, business that cheats customersThat company is running a racket. They take money from people, but never provide them with a service.
raise eyebrows cause surprise or disapproval, shockIt raised some eyebrows when the mother hit the little child in the store.
rake it in make a lot of moneySince business has improved, he is really raking it in.
rake over the coals scold, reprimand, blameMy boss raked me over the coals for losing the big account.
rat race endless, competitive striving; hurried material existenceWorking in the big city can sometimes feel like a rat race.
raw deal unfair treatmentI was the lowest paid worker in the office. I believe I was given a raw deal.
read between the lines understand things that are not said, find a hidden meaningIf you read between the lines, you will see that this contract only protects the company and not the customer.
real McCoy the genuine thingThis artifact actually came from the Titanic. It is the real McCoy.
red tape excessive formalities in official businessMany businesses have been complaining about the amount of red tape that they must deal with in order to get anything done with the government.
right off the bat in the beginning, immediatelyBefore anything else happened, right off the bat he welcomed everyone to the meeting.
right under one’s nose in an obvious nearby placeEven though I never to my eyes off of the jewelry counter, someone stole a watch right under my nose.
ring a bell remind one of something familiarI’m sure I’ve seen that man before. His name rings a bell.
rip off cheat, robThis product I bought doesn’t work and is made poorly. I was ripped off.
road hog person who takes too much room on the roadThat road hog is driving between two lanes and I think may cause an accident.
rock the boat upset the status quoIf you tell everyone in the office about the company’s plans to close, you may cause a lot of problems. Don’t rock the boat.
roll out the red carpet greet a person with great respect, give a big welcomeWhen the King of Jordan visited Washington, they rolled out the red carpet and gave him a great welcome
rope into trick, persuade or pressureShe got roped into going to the meeting even though she doesn’t work in that department.
rough approximateThis computer sells for roughly $1000.
rub one the wrong way annoy, bother, make angryThere is something about his personality that just rubs me the wrong way.
rub something in constantly refer to a mistake or faultShe used to rub it in that I was fired from my job. She is no longer my friend.
rule out decide against, eliminateYou will need some medical tests because your doctor needs to rule out whether or not you may have a virus.
rule the roost be the dominant one in the familyAlthough she is very quiet and soft-spoken, I was told that she rules the roost in her family.
run around in circles act confused, do a lot, but accomplish littleI had so much to do that I was running around in circles.
run out of finish the supply, use upThe car’s gas tank was empty and I was afraid that we were going to run out of gas.
run ragged tire, exhaustI haven’t had a day off in 2 months and feel like I’m running ragged.
run (take) a risk be open to danger or loss, unprotectedEveryone is sick in your friend’s house. If you go and visit him, you are running the risk of getting sick too.
run down in bad conditionNothing seems to be working in this car. It seems to be very run down.
scalper a person who buys a ticket at the regular rate and sells it at a profitThere were many scalpers selling tickets before the game.
scam a plan to cheat someoneThe woman finally got in trouble, because it was found out that she was running a scam.
scatter around carelessly put in different placesClothes were scattered around the messy room.
scrape the bottom of the barrel take whatever is left after best has been takenWe need to find employees for the new company but all the talented ones are already working. It looks like we need to scrape the bottom of the barrel and hire people with less talent.
scrape together get money little by littleI’ll need to scrape together some money so that I can buy your car.
scratch the surface merely begin to understand or accomplish somethingHe has been looking through the accounting books to find all of the errors. There seems to be so many that he is only beginning to scratch the surface.
scrounge around look in a lot of places for a certain itemI need a 2 inch screw that will hold a part tight in the light fixture. I’ve been scrounging around for an hour, but can’t seem to find one.
second hand not new, previously usedThe little girl has been wearing second hand clothes from her older sister for the past year.
see daylight achieve or expect a favorable resultNow that most of the inventory is done, we are beginning to see daylight.
see eye to eye have the same opinion, agreeMy partner and I are splitting up. We do not see eye to eye.
see red become very angryI saw red when he told me that he wouldn’t be at work tomorrow.
sell like hotcakes sell quickly, rapidlyHis CD is becoming so popular, it is selling like hotcakes.
sell oneself short underestimate oneselfEven though she is the only one who knows how to fix all of the computers, she doesn’t realize how valuable she really is. She is always selling herself short.
send someone packing tell someone to leave, dismissWhen he broke up with his girlfriend, he didn’t want her living in his apartment anymore. He sent her packing.
serve time be in jailHe served time in the county jail for driving without a driver’s license.
set one back costThese new shoes set me back $200.
settle down live a quiet normal lifeAfter they marry, they plan to move out into the country, settle down and have a family.
shape up begin to act and look rightThe school boy was hitting other children and talking out in class. He was told by the teacher that he better shape up or he will have to stand in the hallway.
sharp smart, witty, quick thinkingThe supervisor is very sharp. She knows how to quickly fix any problem that may arise.
shell out payWe shelled out a lot of money to eat at that fancy restaurant.
shook up upset, worried fearfulI got all shook up when I heard the awful news.
shoot full of holes find great fault withI thought my idea was great, but my boss said it would never work. He shot it full of holes.
shoot the breeze talk idly or gossipLet’s go out after work and shoot the breeze for awhile.
shop around look in many storesShe shopped around for the perfect dress to wear to the party.
shoplifter one who steals goods from storesThe shoplifter was stealing some merchandise and was caught by the security guard.
short end of the stick unfair, unequal treatmentI was the only employee who had to work all weekend. I got the short end of the stick.
shrug off dismiss, not be bothered or hurtEven though his classmates treated him badly, he didn’t let them bother him. He always shrugged off their mean comments.
sick and tired disliking some continual behavior, annoyedI am sick and tired of listening to the loud music that my neighbors are always playing.
side with favor, support one position in a disputeMy father always sided with my sister even though he knew she was wrong.
side-swipe hit the side of a carMy car needs to be repaired. It was side-swiped by a bus on my way to work today.
simmer down become quiet, calmThe teacher told the children to simmer down because they were too loud.
sink one’s teeth into go to work seriouslyI can’t wait to sink my teeth into this exciting new project.
sink or swim fail or succeed by your own effortsThis venture is going to be successful or a complete failure. It’s either going to be sink or swim.
sit right be acceptableHis father doesn’t want him to go to a far away university. It doesn’t sit right with him.
sit tight wait patientlySit tight while I run back to my house and get my keys.
sitting pretty in a favorable situationTheir team is 40 points ahead in the game. It doesn’t look like they can lose. Th yare sitting pretty.
six feet under deadThe old man that used to live in that house is now six feet under. He died a few months ago.
size up form an opinion, assessBefore I can give you my opinion, I need to size up the situation.
skeleton in one’s closet a family secretShe has always seemed distant and secretive. She has many skeletons in her closet.
skip forget, pass overThe teacher needed to skip a few questions on the test because he ran out of time.
sky high expensiveAfter purchasing the new bed with all the sheets and pillows, the bill was sky high.
sleazy shoddy, dirty, in poor conditionHer apartment was sleazy. There was dirt and garbage all over the floor.
sleep on it think about, consider, decide laterEven though you want me to take the new job, I need to sleep on it before I give you my decision.
slip one’s mind be forgottenI’m sorry I missed our appointment. It must have slipped my mind.
slob a person who isn’t clean and neatI don’t think that man has washed his clothes in two weeks. He looks like a slob.
smell a rat become suspiciousWhen $6000 dollars was missing from the company, I began to smell a rat and thought it may be internal theft.
smooth something over make better or more pleasantEven though there has been many family problems, her mother likes to smooth everything over and act like things are all good.
snap an easy taskPutting these folder files in order won’t take very long. It is a snap.
snap out of it free oneself from the control of panic, fear, hysteriaHe was upset and crying so hard that he couldn’t snap out of it.
snow job insincere or exaggerated talk intended to trick or impressEven though he never worked a day in his life, he told everyone that he was a successful attorney. He was giving everyone a snow job.
snowball’s chance in hell no chance at allWe’ve got a snowball’s chance in hell to win the lottery next week.
sob story sad story that makes the listener sympatheticThe boy forgot to bring in his homework. He gave his teacher a sob story and told her that his dog ate it.
sore loser person who gets angry when he losesThat little girl is a sore loser. She cries every time she doesn’t win a game.
sort of almost, not quite, similar toI’m not sure what color this shirt is. It is sort of blue and sort of green.
sourpuss a disagreeable person who seldom smilesMy teacher is always in a bad mood. He is such a sourpuss.
spic and span very clean, very neatNow that we have cleaned our house, it looks spic and span.
spill the beans tell a secret, informShe found out a secret and told all of her friends. She spilled the beans.
spine chilling terrifying, thrillingI don’t think that young children should see this movie. It is spine chilling.
spitting image exact resemblanceThe boy is the spitting image of his father. They look like twins.
split hairs make trivial, unnecessary distinctionsThe lawyers were splitting hairs over the wording in the contract.
split up separateAlthough they have been married for over 25 years, thecouple decided to split up because they couldnolongergetalong.
splurge spend a lot of money for somethingWhen it came to buying a new car, they splurged and bought one that was luxurious.
spoiled getting and expecting everything one wantsTheir children are so spoiled. They have every toy that you can imagine and don’t seem to be appreciative.
sport a person generous with moneyHe took me out to dinner and paid for everything. He was very sporty with his money.
spring payBecause he just won some money in a contest, he sprang for dinner.
spruce up clean, redecorateWe wanted to make our home look good for the holiday party. We spent days sprucing it up.
square one in the beginningNow that the computer had lost all the information in the report, we will have to begin at square one.
squeal informEven though he was involved in the bank robbery, he squealed on his partner so that he wouldn’t have to go to jail.
stab someone in the back betray someoneWe were always so friendly in the office. I cannot believe that he stabbed me in the back and tried to have me fired.
stand tolerate, likeThe president would not stand for corruption in his administration.
stand on one’s own two feet be independentOnce he graduated from college, he was able to get a job and an apartment and he was able to stand on his own two feet.
stand someone up fail to keep an appointment or dateThey decided to meet at 6:00. She waited for him for an hour and then realized that he stood her up.
stand up to someone be brave, courageously confront someoneEven though the bully was twice his size, the boy wasn’t afraid and was able to stand up to him.
start the ball rolling take the initiative, begin an actionIt takes approximately one year to be accepted into that school. We completed an application to start the ball rolling.
stay away from avoidI always try to stay away from mean people.
stick one’s neck out look for trouble, take risksAlthough I had nothing to do with the problem that he was having, I stuck my neck out to help him.
stick it out endure, continueThe girl was miserable at sleep away camp but she only had one more week before it was over. She decided to stick it out and stay.
stick to one’s guns to defend an action or an opinion despite an unfavorable reactionEveryone told me this idea was stupid. I didn’t listen to them and stuck to my guns.
stick up for defend, help, supportEven though everyone makes fun of her friend at school, she always sticks up for her and stands by her side.
stink to be extremely bad quality, to be terribleI was treated badly on the phone when I called the company about the problem I was having. I think their customer service department really stinks.
straight from the horse’s mouth directly from the person involvedEven though we all heard about the John’s accident, it was nice to here about it from John himself. We finally heard it straight from the horse’s mouth.
straighten out put in orderHe spent Saturday straightening out his clothing drawers and making everything neat.
strapped having no money availableCan you please buy my lunch today? I am strapped for money until payday next week.
strike while the iron is hot take advantage of an opportunityHe has been working very hard on his new business. It has been taking off and he wants to strike while the iron is hot.
strings attached restraining circumstances, obligationsHe became company president, but he had to marry the owner’s daughter. There were strings attached.
stuck unable to understandI am stuck on this math problem and I cannot figure it out.
stuff thingsWe need to buy a lot of stuff for the party.
stuffed shirt a person who is rigid or too formalIt is fun working in my office. Everyone likes to laugh and have a good time except for Ed. Ed is always serious, businesslike and never wants to relax and have a good time. He is such a stuffed shirt.
swamped overwhelmedI need to complete four reports by tomorrow. I am swamped with work.
swan song final appearanceThe actress died after completing the role in this movie. This was her swan song.
sweat bullets be nervous, be very hotI didn’t know how the interview would go and was very nervous. I was sweating bullets.
sweatshop a factory that has poor conditions, long hours, low payI feel bad for people who have to work in that chemical plant. I have heard it is like a sweatshop in there.
swell terrificYour boss has said great things about you. She says that you are a swell guy.
take a beating lose moneyLast year, everyone took a beating in the stock market.
take a crack at try, attemptEven though you tried to fix the toy and couldn’t, let me take a crack at it.
take advantage of treat unfairly for your own gain, make good use of time or conditionsBecause I had a few days off of work, I took advantage of all the time I had a read a few books.
take after resemble or act like a parent or relativeI see that he takes after his dad in his ability to play basketball.
take it endure trouble, criticism, abuse, pressureEveryone in school told her how ugly and stupid she was. She was unable to take it and eventually changed schools.
take on begin to handle, commit oneself to, acceptHe took on a great challenge when he became the CEO of a bankrupt company.
take one’s hat off to someone admire, respect, praiseI am very impressed that you actually had your book published. I take my hat off to you!
take over take control, commandWhen the pilot became ill, the co-pilot had to take over the controls of the aircraft.
take someone for a ride cheat, swindleWhen my car broke down for the third time, I realized that the car salesman really took me for a ride.
take someone to the cleaners win all of someone’s money, cheat someoneHe invested money in a business deal that went bad. They took him to the cleaners.
take something lying down suffer without having a fightSomeone said the he stole money from the company. He’s not going to take that lying down.
take something to heart consider seriouslyHis parents spoke to him about improving his grades. I hope he took it to heart.
take a bull by the horns take strong actionHe needs more money, so he is going to take the bull by the horns and ask for a raise.
take the Fifth refuse to testify against oneself, as guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment to the ConstitutionHe asked the fat girl how much she weighed. She was embarrassed and took the Fifth.
take the plunge do something decisiveI realized I gained a lot of weight, so I finally took theplunge and decided to seriously goonadiet.
take the words out of someone’s mouth say something someone else was going to sayI was just going to say that he was a liar. You took the words right out of my mouth.
take up begin an activity or hobbyShe plans to take up golf next summer.
take with a grain of salt listen with skepticismHe told me that he got all A’s in college. I don’t believe him. You should take it with a grain of salt.
talk through one’s hatразводить бодягу, нести чушьmake exaggerated or inaccurate statementsShe’s always talking about how much she is investing in the stock market, but I think she is talking through her hat.
talk turkey discuss seriously, in a business-like mannerIf you are really serious about buying my car, let’s talk turkey.
tearjerker story that makes you cryThe movie we saw last night was a real tearjerker.
tell someone off speak to angrilyWhenever she becomes too arrogant, it is time to tell her off.
think up invent, createThe theme for this year’s party will not work. We need to think up a new idea.
third degree, the prolonged questioningWhen I returned home from my date, my roommate wanted to know everything that had happened and gave me the third degree.
through the grapevine via gossip from other peopleI heard through the grapevine that you are pregnant. Is that true?
through the mill experienced in difficulties of lifeShe’s had a difficult life. She’s been put through the mill.
throw cold water on discourageI really don’t want to throw cold water on your business proposal, but I really don’t think that it is a good idea.
throw in the towel surrender, give upWhen he realized that there was no way he wasgoingtofinish the race, he finally threw in the towel.
throw one’s weight around use one’s influence in a showy mannerBecause she was the boss’s daughter, she liked throwing her weight around the office and tell everyone what to do.
throw the book at punish severely for breaking rules or the lawThey have a lot of evidence against that criminal. They are going to throw the book at him at the trial.
tickled pink very happyI wasn’t feeling well and wanted to go home. I was tickled pink that the party had finally ended.
tide someone over help someone through a shortageCan you please loan me $10 and tide me over until I get paid next week?
tie the knot get marriedShe will tie the knot this spring.
tied down restricted by family or job responsibilitiesWhen you have children, pets and a mortgage, you feel tied down.
tight squeeze difficult situation financiallyI don’t have the money for that now. I am in a tight squeeze.
tighten one’s belt economize, spend and use lessSince he has taken a cut in his salary, the family has needed to tighten their belt.
tightwad person who is cheap and stingyWhenever we go to a restaurant, he always tries to leave without contributing any money toward the bill. He is such a tightwad.
tip someone off warn, informThe burglars were arrested because the police were tipped off.
to a T в точку, в точностиperfectly, exactlyAlthough you have only been to my house once, you described it to a T!
to boot in addition, alsoShe is trying to lose weight. So I was surprised that after dinner, she ordered cake and ice cream to boot.
to the hilt completely, to the limitHe’s borrowed a lot of money against his house. He is mortgaged to the hilt!
tooth and nail as hard as possible, fiercelyAlthough they were going to take that an account away from me, I fought tooth and nail to keep it.
top-notch excellent, the bestHe never loses a court case. He is a top-notch attorney.
topsy-turvy upside down, in disarrayWhen you move from one apartment to another, everything is topsy-turvy.
total completely ruinAfter the accident, my car was totaled and was unable to be fixed.
touch and go very dangerous or uncertainShe was sent to the hospital in very poor health. The doctors said that it was touch and go.
tough break unlucky event, misfortuneBreaking his leg in the middle of football season was a tough break for John.
tourist trap any place that is overpriced and attracts touristsI hate going to that resort in the summer. They charge hundreds of dollars a night for a tiny room. I think it’s a tourist trap.
track down search forThe balances in both accounts are not matching. We need to track down the problem.
treat pay for someone elseHe really helped me complete my project, so I treated him to lunch.
try something out testThe store told me that we can try the mattress out for 30 days to see if we like it.
turn one off disgust, bore, repelWhen he started saying bad things about my sister, it really turned me off.
turn out result, endAlthough the movie was boring at first, it turned out to be wonderful.
turn over a new leaf change one’s conduct for the betterMy little boy has recently started lying to his mother. After I spoke with him, he told me that he is turning over a new leaf and won’t do it anymore.
turn someone down rejectAlthough the job interview went very well, he was turned down for the job.
turn someone’s stomach get someone sick and upsetIt really turns my stomach when little children treat their elders poorly.
turn the tables reverse the situationWe lost the game last night, but tonight, we’ll turn the tables.
turn to go to for helpHe was such a good friend. I always knew that I could turn to him if I needed some money.
turn up appearThose keys have been lost for a month. I am hoping that they turn up soon.
twiddle one’s thumbs not busy, not workingOur department has gotten slow this season. All we are doing is twiddling our thumbs.
twist someone around one’s finger influence someone easilyHe will do whatever she wants. It’s amazing how she has him twisted around her little finger.
two-faced disloyal, untrustworthyShe’ll tell you that you have a beautiful dress, but when you leave, she’ll say that you are fat and how awful it looked on you. She is two-faced.
under the table illegal money transaction, such as paying a bribeShe was paid under the table and continued to collect her unemployment checks illegally.
under the weather not feeling wellI started sneezing this morning and have had a bad headache. I am beginning to feel under the weather.
up one’s alley something one enjoys, special interestI’m going to the art museum on Sunday. I know you love to paint, so this is right up your alley.
up the river in jailThe judge found him guilty and he was sent up the river for 5 years.
up to here with disgusted with another’s continual behaviorMy phone bills are always so high. I am just up to here with them.
up to one’s ears deeply immersed inI have a lot of folders sitting on my desk. I am up to my ears in paperwork.
up to par (neg.) meeting normal standardsI have a headache and don’t feel up to par.
up to someone someone’s choiceBecause it is her birthday, it is up to her what kind of birthday cake to buy.
upset the applecart ruin or spoil a plan or ideaOur plans are perfect. Don’t discuss them with anyone. We don’t want to upset the applecart.
use one’s noodle (head) thinkHe wasn’t using his noodle when he offered to stay and clean up the mess.
walk all over someone take advantage of someoneHe loves her so much and she walks all over him.
wash one’s hands of refuse responsibility for, abandonIf he lies or hurts you, you should wash your hands of him.
washed up no longer successful or needed, failedSince he was arrested, his movie career is all washed up.
waste one’s breath speak or argue with no resultI have told her that she should stop smoking a thousand times. Don’t even mention it to her, you’ll be wasting your breath.
watch (or mind) one’s P’s and Q’s act very carefully, pay attention to detailIf you are having dinner with your boss, you have to watch your P’s and Q’s.
water down diluteThe coffee is too strong. I think you need to water it down.
wear the pants be the boss of the familyShe makes all the big decisions when it comes to finances. We all know who wears the pants in that family.
weigh one’s words becareful of whatone saysThe boss is going to interview me today. I don’t wanttotalktoomuch. I should weigh my words.
well-off rich, wealthyShe has traveled extensively throughout the world. I believe she’s very well-off.
wet behind the ears inexperiencedHe can’t manage the office. He is still wet behind the ears.
wet blanket person who discourages others from having funShe was no fun at the party. She is a wet blanket.
wet one’s whistle have a drink, especially alcoholI am so thirsty. I would like to wet my whistle.
what it takes any ability for a job, courageShe is smart and ambitious. She certainly has what it takes to be a doctor.
when the chips are down at the worst time, when one faces the biggest obstaclesA true friend is someone who is always there when the chips are down.
whistle a different tune change one’s attitude, contradict previous ideasThe boss’s son doesn’t believe his father should pay anyone overtime, but when he can work extra hours, he whistles a different tune.
white as a ghost very pale because of fear, shock, illnessMy sister became as white as a ghost when she saw the man at the window.
white lie a harmless lie (told to be polite or to do something not seriously wrong)I told my boss a white lie and said that I was sick yesterday when I actually wasn’t.
wild goose chase absurd or hopeless searchShe did not want the police to find her boyfriend so she gave them false information and sent them on a wild goose chase.
will power strength of mindSome people say you need a lot of will power to quit smoking.
wimp spineless, non-assertive personHe never speaks up for himself. He is such a wimp.
wind up end, finishIt’s getting late and I want to finish this project and go home. Let’s wind things up.
wing it rely only on one’s knowledge, act without preparationThey asked me to make a speech, but I did not prepare anything so I just winged it.
wisecrack sarcastic or nasty remarkHe is not very nice, so don’t be surprised if he makes a wisecrack about your clothes.
wishy-washy having no definite opinion, unable to decideHe never has his own opinion. He is very wishy-washy.
with a fine toothed comb very carefullyShe lost her earring somewhere in our house. We searched for it with a fine-toothed comb.
with flying colors with great or total successShe passed her course with flying colors and now wants to go out and celebrate.
within reason sensible, reasonable, reasonablyI know you want to buy my car. If your offer is within reason, then it’s a deal.
word of mouth recommendation from other peopleHis business does not advertise. Hebecame successful all by word of mouth.
work one’s fingers to the bone workveryhardIhad to type manypages to put this booktogether. Ihave worked my fi gers to the bone.
work out find an answer, solveI have added these numbers three times and still get different answers. This problem can’t seem to be worked out.
wrong side of the tracks, the the poor section of town, implying social inferiorityShe comes from a wealthy family. Her parents did not want her to marryanyone from the wrong side of the tracks.
yell bloody murder express loud, emotional angerSome babies yell bloody murder if their mothers leave them with babysitters.
You’re kidding Really? Is it true?You’ve read every single entry in this book? You’re kidding!

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