Useful Vocabulary & Phrases: 2014-2015

No. 1
Phrase: Give Someone a Hand
Meaning: -help someone
Example:Can you give me a hand with my project? I have to make it ready by Monday.
No. 2
Phrase: See Eye to Eye
Meaning: agree with each other
Example:They are very good partners. They see eye to eye on many things.
No. 3
Phrase: You are what you eat
Meaning: If you want to be fit and healthy, you need to eat good food and avoid unhealthy items.
Example:May: Are you going to eat all those snacks?
Paul: Yes. What’s wrong?
May: Be careful. You are what you eat. If you want to stay healthy, throw them away.
No. 4
Phrase: Every Cloud has a Silver Lining
Meaning: -Every bad situation has some good aspect to it.
-This proverb is usually used to encourage someone who faces difficulties and is unable to see any positive way forward
Example:May: My brother is in hospital now.
He broke his leg last night and he was told that he had to stay in the hospital for a week. He is very unlucky. Paul: Don’t worry. Every cloud has a silver lining. He can then take a good rest from his heavy work in the coming week.
No. 5
Phrase: Look Before You Leap
Meaning: -check that you are clear what is ahead of you before making a decision that you cannot go back on
Example:May: I’m planning to take up 5 more courses in tutorial schools.
Paul: Are you sure you can spare the time and money? My advice is: Look before you leap.
No. 6
Phrase: Close to home
Meaning: If a remark or comment is close to home, it is so true, or it affects you so directly, that you feel uncomfortable.
Example:Alan looks embarrassed. Bob's comment must bave been close to home.
No. 7
Phrase: Cork up something
Meaning: If you cork up your feelings or emotions, you fail to show or express them.
Example:It would be better if she showed her grief and didn't cork up her feelings.
No. 8
Phrase: Bare your heart(soul) to someone
Meaning: If you bare you heart (or soul) to someone, you reveal your innermost thoughts and feelings to them.
Example:Mike couldn't keep things to himself any longer. He decided to bare his soul to his best friend.
No. 9
Phrase: All things to all people
Meaning: If you are all things to all people, you please or satisfy everyone.
Example:She's exhausted tying to be a good wife, a good mother and a good teacher, but she can't be all things to all people.
No. 10
Phrase: Butter wouldn’t melt in your mouth
Meaning: If you say that someone looks as if butter wouldn't melt in their mouth, you mean that they look completely innocent, but that they are capable of doing unpleasant things.
Example:The boy who stole the purse looked as if butter wouldn't melt in his mouth.
No. 11
Phrase: Big cheese
Meaning: This expression refers to a person who has a lot of power and influence in an organization.
Example:Tom's father is a big cheese in the oil industry
No. 12
Phrase: to play gooseberry
Meaning: If someone is playing gooseberry, they are with two people who are having a romantic relationship and would prefer to be alone.
Example:A: Would you come to the movie with us?
B: No, thanks. You two go alone and enjoy yourselves. I don’t want to play gooseberry.
No. 13
Phrase: to stand somebody up
Meaning: If someone stands you up, it means they fail to keep an appointment or date with you.
Example:He stood her up once too often, so she broke up with him. Tom stood up Mary once and she never forgave him.
No. 14
Phrase: schadenfreude
Meaning: “Schadenfreude” is a loan word borrowed from German. It means the satisfaction or pleasure felt at the misfortune or trouble of the others. It is usually used as a noun.
Example:Mary could not help but feel a degree of schadenfreude when his ex-boyfriend was dumped by his girlfriend.
No. 15
Phrase: to nuke (food)
Meaning: “Nuke” was first used as a slang word to refer to a nuclear device or weapon. Later it was used as a verb which means “to heat in a microwave oven”.
Example:I grabbed some leftovers from the fridge and nuke them for dinner.
No. 16
Phrase: beggars can’t be choosers
Meaning: We use this idiom when people are in a desperate situation where they cannot have what they want and must accept whatever they can get or are given.
Example:I would have preferred a flat of my own rather than sharing this squalid sub-divided unit with some strangers but beggars can't be choosers. I have been looking for a job for a year since I was laid off.