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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Around the Bend

Idiom: around the bend
Meaning: to be coming soon (an event or time of year); upcoming
Context #1 – Betty and Sergio are talking about the upcoming vacation
Sergio: This has been a difficult term at school. I can’t wait until vacation!
Betty: Well, you won’t have to wait long. The break is just around the bend and I have some really fun activities planned!
Sergio: Really?
Betty: Yes. I think you will like where we are going. But I’m keeping everything a secret so that you will be surprised.
Sergio: No way! Vacation is just around the bend and I have very little time to plan. What if I need to bring a bathing suit or hiking boots? I need to know.
Betty: No worries! I will make sure you have everything you need.

Context #2 – It is October 2016 and two friends are talking about the upcoming presidential election in November.
Darline: I can’t believe how fast time goes by. The election is right around the bend and we need to vote for our next president. Do you know who you will vote for yet?
Kenji: No, I think that I need a little more time and there is not much of a choice. One of the candidates just insults everyone and the other one is a career politician who only cares about power.
Darline: Well, it may seem hopeless, but we should still vote. It’s not only the presidential election, but other important elections for the House and Senate are also around the bend.
Kenji: Yes, I know. Maybe our votes will make a difference in those elections.
Darline: I certainly hope so!

Meaning: The idiom “around the bend” means upcoming or coming soon in American English. Sometimes “around the corner” can have the same meaning when discussing upcoming events or seasons. For example, in Context 1, they are talking about their upcoming vacation. In Context 2, they are talking about the presidential election which is just around the bend. Please note that in British English, the definition for this idiom is crazy or mentally unstable. For example. “I think this stressful job is sending me around the bend,” which means the job is making me crazy.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

To Fall Into Place

Idiom: to fall into place
Meaning: to begin to make sense;  to happen in a satisfactory way without problems; to understand something that was not understandable before; to solve the problem

Context #1 – Bethany is finishing her first day on the job
Lars: I’m so glad you got a job here. How do you like it? Is everything OK?
Bethany: Well, I like it now. At first I was really confused about how I was supposed to take orders over the phone and that really stressed me out.
Lars: Oh no! You should have told me. We have support material for new people who are just learning on the job.
Bethany: Yes, I know. I asked Martha what to do and she gave me a script and other support material. Then, things began to fall into place, and I finally understood what to do.
Lars: Whew! That’s good. I really want you to like it here.
Bethany: No worries! After everything fell into place, I am stress-free and happy!

Context #2 – Two fans are watching a basketball game and discussing their favorite team
Donna: Wow! I can’t believe how differently the team is playing today compared to just last week when they completely fell apart and lost by 20 points.
Carlos: I know! It’s like a miracle. I guess the changes the coach made in the team lineup and the new plays really made things fall into place for the team.
Donna: You can say that again! Look at all the shots they are making, and they are getting almost all of the rebounds!
Carlos: Yes, it is fun to watch.
Donna: Well, I’m really glad that everything fell into place for the team before they lost too many games. We might even go to the playoffs this year!

Meaning: The idiom “to fall into place” means to make sense of something that previously was not understandable or to organize something efficiently to make it more understandable. In Context 1, Bethany was confused about her job duties, but when a co-worker helped her, everything fell into place. In Context 2, when the team became more organized and together, everything fell into place and they started playing well.