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Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Dressed To Kill

If someone, especially a woman, is dressed to kill, they are wearing very smart or attractive clothes which are intended to attract attention and impress people.

To dress in extravagantly fancy or stylish clothes so as to thoroughly impress others.

#1 – Dressed Up for a Date
Jasmin: It must be a very special event that Stephen is taking you tonight. You’re dressed to kill!
Therese: Yes, he’s taking me to a fine dining on a cruise ship. It’s an elegant place so I did my best to put on something nice.
Jasmin:  You look gorgeous. I hope you have a great time!
Therese: Thank you. I’m sure I will.

#2 – Going to Attend a Celebrity Party
Abby: Hey Cate, are you going to that fancy party next Saturday night?
Cate: The one in Beverly Hills for the movie producers? I wouldn’t miss it.
Abby: Yes, that’s the one. I’m wondering about what to wear.
Cate: Well, you better dress to kill cuz’ it’s going to be one extravagant party! 

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

To show someone the ropes

Example 1- John is starting a new job at Burger Town
Manager: Hello, John. Welcome to Burger Town! We are excited to have you on our team.
John: I'm excited to be here. I'm a little nervous for my first day, but I will do my best.
Manager: Don't worry! We've arranged training for today. Your supervisor will help you. She will show you the ropes before you have to help any customers.
John: Great! Looking forward to getting started.

Example 2- New international student at LSI
Longtime student: Hi there! My name is Jack. You must be new! Nice to meet you!
New student: Hi, yes. I'm new. Nice to meet you, too.
Longtime student: You seem a little lost. Are you OK?
New Student: Not really. Everything is really confusing.
Longtime student: Don't worry! I can show you the ropes. It's pretty easy once you know where everything is. Let's have lunch together.

To show someone the ropes is to teach someone a task, or to show someone how a place functions. In example 1, John's supervisor will show him the ropes. She will teach him to do his tasks. In example 2, the new student's classmate will show him around the campus; he will show him the ropes so he can know how to function in that place.

(Often used with can and will)  subject/subject pronoun can/will show + object pronoun + the ropes → George can show you the ropes.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019


Slaps: to taste great; to be amazing or awesome; to describe music that is really good

Dialogue #1
Jenny: Where do you want to go for dinner?
Kevin: Have you tried that new pizza place around the corner.
Jenny: Yes, last week. Their vegetarian pizza slaps!
Kevin: Great! Let's go.

Dialogue #2
Kelly: Have you heard the new Billie Eilish song?
Cassandra: No, I haven't listened to her music very much.
Kelly: Really? You should. Her new song slaps!
Cassandra: OK. I guess I'll listen to it.

Meaning: In the first dialogue, they are talking about a new restaurant that has delicious pizza, or "the pizza slaps." In the second dialogue, they are talking about music and a new song from the singer Billie Eilish. Her new song "slaps" or is really amazing. "Slaps" is often used to describe music.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

To sleep on

To Sleep On (first meaning): The most common meaning is to think more about something (usually overnight) and make a decision about it later.

Jenny: Are you going to take that new job working in Thailand?
Casey: It's a great job. I would be teaching children English.
Jenny: So, are you moving to Thailand?
Casey: Well, even though it's a great job, I need to sleep on it before making a final decision. It's a big change to move to another country.

Meaning: In this situation, Casey has been offered a great teaching job in Thailand, but it is a big change in her life, so she needs to think about accepting the job a little more or she needs to sleep on it.

To Sleep on (second meaning): More recently, it means to ignore or not pay attention to someone's ability or talent; to not get the attention one deserves.

Kevin: You should let Callie sing at your party on Saturday night. She has an amazing voice.
Amber: Really, I didn't know that she can sing or perform.
Kevin: Everyone is sleeping on her. I don't understand it because she is so talented.
Amber: Maybe she needs to promote herself more to let people know how good she is.

Meaning: In this situation, Callie is really talented and can sing well, but no one knows it. They are ignoring her talent. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

To be a fly on the wall

To be unnoticed while listening and observing others.

Example #1:
I wish I could be a fly on the wall and hear what he says to his boss when he tries to explain why the project failed.

Example #2:
Tom never came home to his girlfriend last night. I wish I could have been a fly on the wall when he told her the reason.

Example #3: The rival company is going bankrupt. If I could be a fly on the wall at their meeting I could learn what is going on there.

Example #4: They made the documentary with a fly on the wall style.

To be a fly on the wall: This idiom uses the image of the small but silent fly resting on the side of a wall, and observing while human activity continues in the room. The definition is to listen and watch others closely but they don’t notice your presence. To observe a situation as if you are invisible.

In example #1, the speaker wants to hear how the co-worker is going to explain his failure and how the boss will respond to him.

In example #2, the speaker is interested to hear the boyfriend’s excuse and his girlfriend’s response and would have liked to hear how they interacted with each other.

In example #3, the speaker is from a rival company and wants to learn what kinds of internal difficulties the company is facing without them knowing that he is listening.

In example #4, a fly on the wall documentary is an observational style of documentary filmmaking in which the camera records participants doing things in their normal way and responding to situations in their normal way. The style avoids using interviews. The effect is such that the camera, and therefore the viewers, too, are like flies on the wall observing the situation.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Cray cray (adjective)

This slang word is used to describe someone or something that is really crazy.  It is just another way to say "crazy" and is widely used by the younger generation.  This expression has been around for about 10 years and but it really became popular when the rapper Jay-Z used it in one of his songs.

Example 1
I have so much work to do today.  I think I am going to go cray cray.

Example 2
My brother met this girl recently.  She keeps texting him and calling him all the time.  She keeps asking him to go out on a date even though he clearly told her that he is not interested in her.  I think she is really cray cray.

Example 3

Tom: Hey John, can I borrow your new car?  I want to go to this cool party tonight.
John: Oh ya?  Are you a good driver?  How long have you been driving?
Tom: Of course, I am a good driver.  I mean I failed my driving test 2 times, but I passed it the third time.  And I have gotten in an accident only once this year.
John:  Dude!  You must be cray cray if you think I am going to lend you my car.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

To promise the moon

To promise the moon: to say that you will do more than is possible for you to do. To promise more than can be delivered.

#1 - A politician giving speeches to potential voters
In his speech, the politician promised the moon to the people so that they would vote for him. He promised that he would reduce their taxes and that under his leadership crime would drop.

#2 – A boyfriend asking his girlfriend to marry him
The man promised the moon to his girlfriend. He told her that he would become wealthy and that in two years she would be able to quit her job and focus on her art. He told her that they would go on exotic vacations and have a winter home in Spain.

To promise the moon: This idiom is used when something is unlikely to happen even though the speaker has said that it would. The speaker is presenting an attractive future in the hopes that he will also appear attractive.  

In example #1, the politician is trying to convince people to vote for him by promising attractive things in the future even though he may have no intention of even trying to fulfill that promise.

In example #2, the boyfriend is hoping his girlfriend will accept his proposal for marriage. Perhaps he fears that she will reject him, so he is making her future with him look very attractive. He may feel especially positive about his future. It could be that he is not trying to deceive her, only afraid that he may lose her. He wants her to feel that he will work hard for her and make their lives together as wonderful as he can. He may be unrealistic about what he can do for her.