Update: 2012-11-27 10:00 PM +0630


TIL English Idiom Collection


Collected from various sources by U Kyaw Tun (UKT), M.S. (I.P.S.T., U.S.A.), and staff of TIL (Tun Institute of Learning, http://www.tuninst.net ) for staff and students of TIL Computing and Language Center, Yangon, Myanmar. Not for sale.

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dad-blamed damaged goods damn it [B] damn the luck [B] damn you [B] damned if you do and damned if you don't dampen your spirits dance with the one who brought you dapper Dan daredevil dark horse dark side darken a church door dam dam it dam my luck dam right dam tooting dasein dash off a note/letter

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From Magnuson
dad-blamed --
daredevil Internet link dad-blamed

dad-blamed -- damned, darn, dingbusted
The dad-blamed fishing line is tangled! It's in knots!

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damaged goods

From Magnuson
damaged goods --
abused, in poor condition
One man described prostitutes as damaged goods.

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damn it

From Magnuson
damn it --
it is very annoying or frustrating, darn it
Damn it! That cigarette smoke is making me ill.

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damn the luck

From Magnuson
damn the luck --
that is bad luck, that was unlucky, darn my luck
When Marilyn's computer crashed, she said, "Damn the luck!"

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damn you

From Magnuson
damn you --
you are bad, you deserve the worst, go to hell
Damn you, dog! Get out of my house with your dirty bum!

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damned if you do and damned if you don't

From Magnuson
damned if you do and damned if you don't --
you are blamed if you do it and blamed if you do not, between the devil..., can't have it both ways
If you offer to help, he refuses; if you don't offer, he complains. You're damned if you do, and damned if you don't.

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dampen your spirits

From Magnuson
dampen your spirits --
reduce your enthusiasm, cause you to lose interest
Losing one game didn't dampen her spirits. She's full of hope.

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dance with the one who brought you

From Magnuson
dance with the one who brought you --
be loyal to the person who helped you, don't turn your back on your friends
Don't try to get votes from big business. Stick with the workers - dance with the ones who brought you.

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dapper Dan

From Magnuson
dapper Dan --
well-groomed man, classy man
He looks so great in his new suit - a real dapper Dan!

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From Magnuson
daredevil --
(See a daredevil)

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dark horse

From Magnuson
dark horse
-- dash off a note/letter Internet link dark horse

dark horse -- the competitor that could surprise us and win
The dark horse in the World Cup is Ireland. They could win it all.

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dark side

From Magnuson
dark side --
bad side of a person, the evil part of our nature
Most people try to hide the dark side of their personality.

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darken a church door

From Magnuson
darken a church door --
attend church, go to a church service
He never darkens a church door except to attend funerals.

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From Magnuson
darn --
damn, ruddy
35 is hot - too darn hot!

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dam it

From Magnuson
darn it --
oh no, not again, nuts, rats
Darn it! I locked my keys in the car.

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dam my luck

From Magnuson
darn my luck --
my luck is poor, I am unlucky today
My bread is in the oven and the power goes off. Darn my luck!

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dam right

From Magnuson
darn right --
that is right, yes, you betcha
"Do you believe in ghosts?" "Darn right I do! I just saw one!"

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dam tooting

From Magnuson
darn tooting --
that is true, I agree, darn right
"They still talk about the winter of 1907, don't they, Helmer?" "Darn tootin'! It was a cold one!"

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From Magnuson
dasein --
blending into a group, not distinct or unique
How to describe Anna? Dasein - she seems to disappear in a group.

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dash off a note/letter

From Magnuson
dash off a note/letter --
quickly write a note or letter and send it
Josi dashed off a note to her cousin in Toronto - in English.

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D03. dead even -- dead ringer Internet link dead even

dead even -- having the same score, tied, a dead heat
After six events in the decathlon, the two men were dead even.

dead-eye Dick -- a person who can shoot accurately
We call him Dead-eye Dick. He can shoot the dot off an i.

dead giveaway -- (See a dead giveaway)

dead heat -- (See a dead heat)

dead in the water -- not competitive, not qualified to compete, haven't got a hope
When you're job hunting, if you don't have a resume you're dead in the water.

dead last -- the last runner or competitor
It doesn't matter if you come in dead last. Just finish the race.

dead loss -- (See a dead loss)

dead meat -- finished, terminated, done for
If you're caught driving drunk in Sweden, you're dead meat.

dead on -- accurate, correct, spot on
When you said our sales would double, you were dead on.

dead ringer -- (See a dead ringer)

D04. dead set against -- death warmed over Internet link dead set against

dead set against -- strongly opposed to, down with
She's dead set against abortion as a means of birth control.

dead tired -- very tired, blotto, zonked
After fighting the fire, they were dead tired - exhausted.

dead to the world -- sleeping, in a deep sleep, sound asleep
I was dead to the world when the phone rang and woke me.

dead wrong -- clearly wrong, mistaken
I was dead wrong about the word: it's prejudice, not prejudism.

deadbeat -- a person with no desire to work, good-for-nothing
Lana, are you going to marry that deadbeat? He's no good!

deadhead -- a person who has damaged his brain with drugs
It's too bad, really, but Marvin is a deadhead - too much cocaine.

deal me in -- deal cards for me, please; I want to play cards
Deal me in, Walter. Deal me a winning hand.

Dear Dad, No mon, no fun, your son! Dear Son, So sad, too bad, your dad! -- Letter from a son attending college, and his dad's reply. (contributed by Jes Jr. Henry)

death row -- the prisoners who are to be executed or put to death
The priest wants to visit the prisoners on death row.

death warmed over -- (See look like death warmed over)

D05. death wish -- deked out of his jock Internet link death wish

death wish -- saying you want to die, inviting death
To challenge the Mafia would be a death wish. It would be suicide.

deathbed -- (See on your deathbed)

deck him -- knock him down, cream you
Tony decked him in the first round of the boxing match.

deck out -- decorate; attach ornaments, lights, etc.; customize
His truck was all decked out with chrome trim and colored lights.

deep, dark secret -- very private information, confidential information, on the QT
I'll tell you about my past, but not my childhood. That's a deep, dark secret.

deep pockets -- rich, wealthy, filthy rich, loaded
Jerry can pay your legal fees. He's got deep pockets.

deep six -- in a six-foot-deep grave, pushing up daisies
If you overdose on coke, you're deep six, man.

deep sleep -- sound sleep, restful sleep, sleep like a log
I was in a deep sleep when the fire started, but I woke up and phoned for help.

deke you -- deceive you, fool you, sucker you
He'll try to deke you. He'll fake one way and go the other.

deked out of his jock -- tricked out of position, outplay, stickhandle
Mario skated in on the goalie and deked him out of his jock.

D06. dense -- dickens you say Internet link dense

dense -- not smart, slow at thinking, stupid, not too swift
She knows the answers to these questions. She's just acting dense.

Denver boot -- a wheel block that stops a car from moving
Greg was drunk, so the police put a Denver boot on his car.

deserve credit -- deserve praise or thanks, give her credit
David deserves credit for finding the lost keys. Thank you, boy.

devil-may-care -- carefree, wild, on a lark
Employers won't hire people with a devil-may-care attitude.

devil you say -- (See the devil you say)

dibs -- (See first dibs)

dick [B] -- penis, dink, dork, hoo-haw
With all these winter clothes on, I can't find my dick.

dick -- nothing, zero, nada, zilch
Don't listen to him. He knows dick about selling!

dickens of a time -- (See a dickens of a time)

dickens you say -- (See the dickens you say)

D07. did good -- dig a little deeper Internet link did good

did good -- did well, did a good job, done good
I watched you ride that horse - you did real good!

did yourself proud -- did a good job, did well, did good, done good
That was a great dinner, Nora. You did yourself proud.

diddly-squat -- nothing, not a penny, dick
For all that work, he gave me diddly-squat - not even thanks.

didn't have a stitch of clothes on -- naked, nude, birthday suit, in the buff
When the kids go swimming they don't have a stitch of clothes on.

die down -- gradually stop, diminish, drop off
When the laughter died down, I found my false teeth, put them in my mouth, and said, "Excuse me."

die for -- want very much; in the worst way
I'm dying for a cup of coffee! I'll have an Espresso, please.

die hard -- change slowly, continue to be strong, you can't teach...
Some men still want to be the head of the family. Old beliefs die hard.

die off -- become extinct, all of them die
That type of horse died off before humans appeared.

different strokes for different folks -- people have different preferences, to each his own
When Michael heard the story of a man who had a clone of his wife in several cities, he smiled and said, "Different strokes for different folks!"

dig a little deeper -- try harder, give a little more
The coach asked the team to dig a little deeper, to give their best.

D08. dig deep -- dildo Internet link dig deep

dig deep -- give more money, dig a little deeper
We'll all have to dig deep if we hope to achieve our goals.

dig in -- begin to eat, eat up, help yourself
Dig in, everybody. There's lots of food.

dig in their heels -- hold their position, not yield or move
If we discuss money, he digs in his heels. "No raises," he says.

dig it up -- dig the garden, dig to uncover a buried object
Remember where you bury the treasure, because some day you may want to dig it up.

dig me -- understand, get my drift
"I don't like you to take my car. That's gonna stop, dig me!"

dig your own grave -- cause your own failure, cut your own throat
When you criticize the manager, are you digging your own grave?

dig yourself in -- make it worse, say or do something that aggravates
When he insulted the policeman, I said, "Don't dig yourself in."

dig/dig it -- like, enjoy, relate to
Ole digs the Beatles. His favorite song is Norwegian Wood.

digs -- apartment, house, pad
I'm having a party so everybody can see my new digs.

dildo -- (See a dildo)

D09. dilly -- DINKS Internet link dilly

dilly -- (See it's a dilly)

dilly-dally -- go very slowly, pause too much
Sarah, you come straight home from school. Don't dilly-dally.

dime a dozen -- (See a dime a dozen)

dimwit -- one who is slow to respond or catch on
I felt like a dimwit when I couldn't remember her name.

ding-a-ling -- fool, an airhead, jerk
What a ding-a-ling! She expects me to pay for a phone book!

dingbat/ding-dong -- strange person, nerd, weirdo
That dingbat wanted me to take off my clothes!

dingbusted -- damn, blasted, consarned, darn
I couldn't reach the dingbusted switch to turn on the light

dingle you -- phone you, call you, give me a ring
I'll dingle you when I get back from Chicago.

dink [B] -- penis, dork, hoo-haw
Did you wash your hands after you touched your dink?

DINKS -- married couples who have Double Income No Kids
Our travel packages are purchased mainly by DINKS.

D10. dipstick -- dis/diss Internet link dipstick

dipstick -- a person who seems to be stupid, dimwit
When Todd is nervous, he acts like a dipstick - like a fool.

dirt cheap -- very cheap, not expensive
Cherries are dirt cheap in B.C. during the summer.

dirt file -- record of failures and bad actions
Every time we have a fight, you haul out my dirt file.

dirties -- (See dirty laundry)

dirty dog/dirty rat -- immoral person, liar, scum, slimebucket
You dirty rat! You stole my truck and used my credit card!

dirty laundry -- personal problems, mistakes, scandals
I don't want the public to see my dirty laundry - my worst moves.

dirty money -- stolen money, money obtained illegally
We believe the donation from the Mafia is dirty money.

dirty thirties -- 1930s, when drought caused hardship on the prairie; dirty thirties
During the dirty thirties, soil drifted into the ditches and crops wouldn't grow.

dirty work -- unpleasant tasks, difficult work
I do the dirty work - fight for the puck - and he scores the goals.

dis/diss -- insult, criticize, disrespect, put down
If you dis me, I won't help you with your math.

D11. discombobulated -- do Internet link discombobulated

discombobulated -- disturbed, bothered, upset
When my dog hears a train whistle, he becomes discombobulated. He barks and howls.

discretion is the better part of valor -- be sensible when you are brave; be courageous but not reckless
In all your battles, be brave but not foolish. Discretion is the better part of valor.

dish -- (See what a dish)

dish it out -- criticize, complain
Jay can dish it out, but she gets mad if you criticize her.

disk jockey (DJ) -- radio announcer who plays recorded music
Clare became a disk jockey with a radio station in Moose Jaw.

ditch him -- leave him, lose him, give him the slip
I tried to ditch him at the mall but he held on to my hand.

ditto -- repeat it, write or say the same thing, back at ya, same to you
"You jerk!" "Ditto!" "You creep!" "Ditto!" "Ditto!" "Double ditto!" "What!"

ditz -- fool, an airhead, jerk, nerd, nut
You ditz! You put ketchup on my ice cream!

do (a speed) -- travel at a speed, drive at a speed of
We were only doing 50 km per hour. That's the truth.

do -- (See hairdo)

D12. do a 180 -- do it the hard way Internet link do a 180

do a 180 -- turn around and go in the opposite direction, U-turn
When the boy on the motorcycle saw the police car, he did a 180 and sped off.

do a dime -- be in prison for ten years, do time
If you shoot somebody you'll do a dime, maybe more.

do a favor -- help someone who asks, do a task for someone
Ben offered to do me a favor if I ever need help.

do a gig -- play music for a dance or concert
Our band is doing a gig at Bijo's tonight. We play from 10 till 2.

do a number on -- deceive, fool, taken, taken in
They did a number on us when we bought this car. It's not reliable.

do away with -- throw out, dispose of
We want to do away with nuclear weapons - to dispose of them.

do-dad -- an object with a name you cannot remember, do-funny
A little do-dad on the back of the carburetor was sticking. That was the problem.

do drugs -- use drugs, take drugs
They don't hire people who do drugs. No way.

do-funny -- a thing with a funny name, thing-a-ma-bob
You put the do-funny on the lever, and you're finished!

do it the hard way -- use a poor method, go against the grain
Don't start a fire with stones. That's doing it the hard way.

D13. do lunch -- do unto others as you would have them do unto you Internet link do lunch

do lunch -- have lunch together, eat lunch
We'll do lunch tomorrow, OK? Do you like salad?

do me -- love me, make love to me
Paul sang, "When she really done me, she done me good!"

do me for/do me until -- supply me until, last me, tide me over
"Got lots of shampoo?" "Enough to do me for a week or so."

do me in -- kill me, knock me off
I hope no one wants to do me in. I want to live a few more years.

do or die -- last chance to win, it's now or never
It's do or die. If we lose this game, we'll be out of the series.

do the honors -- do the task for the leader, fill in for the leader
The Mayor can't speak to us, so Mr. Kelly will do the honors.

do the town -- celebrate or party all over town
On July 1, we'll do the town. We'll really celebrate.

do the trick -- solve the problem, help, that's the ticket
If you need a lubricant, Vaseline will do the trick.

do time -- be in prison, be in a penitentiary
He's doing time for sexual assault. He's in for five years.

do unto others as you would have them do unto you -- treat people the way you would like to be treated
This is The Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

D14. do up -- doctor it/doctor it up Internet link do up

do up -- lace, tighten the laces
Do up your skate laces, please. I will help you tie them.

do with -- would like, want
I could do with a cold drink. I'm hot and thirsty.

do without -- manage without, not have, make do
We did without meat all winter. We became vegetarians.

do you follow -- do you understand? do you see how it operates?
do you understand?
Turn the key left to lock, right to unlock. Do you follow?

do you mind -- do you care? does it matter?
Do you mind if I sit on your desk? Does it bother you?

do your own thing -- do it your own way, do what you feel, let it all hang out
I like managers who let me do my own thing - who respect my way of doing things.

do your part -- do your share, do your job
We did our part to help the food bank. We donated cereal.

do your utmost -- do as much as you can, do whatever you can
Pat did his utmost to save her, but she fell into the pool.

do yourself proud -- do something that you are proud of
You did yourself proud when you helped the refugees.

doctor it/doctor it up -- improve it, edit it, spin doctor, touch up, tweak
I wrote the letter but Ted doctored it up - to make it look professional.

D15. dodge a bullet -- dog me Internet link dodge a bullet

dodge a bullet -- avoid a failure or loss or injury
Kevin dodged a bullet. He got a "D" on the final exam.

dodo -- (See go the way of the dodo)

doesn't add up -- is not logical, does not make sense
One shot was fired, but three cows are dead. It doesn't add up.

doesn't mince words -- does not say nice words when complaining, call a spade a spade, straight from the shoulder
When Greta is angry she doesn't mince words. She tells you what is bothering her.

doesn't wash -- is not believable, is not logical, does not make sense
His explanation doesn't wash. If a millennium begins at year 1, how does he account for the first year?

dog days of summer -- the hottest days of summer, midsummer
We like to watch baseball during the dog days of summer.

dog eat dog -- vicious competition, everybody for himself
Will education prepare us for the dog-eat-dog world of business?

dog in the manger -- a person who will not share something he does not use or need
He's a dog in the manger about his office space. He doesn't use it, but he won't let us have it.

dog it -- be lazy, not work
Bill admits he's been dogging it lately. He lacks energy.

dog me -- follow me, bother me
His failure in politics dogged him for the rest of his life.

D16. dog tired -- dolled up Internet link dog tired

dog tired -- very tired, exhausted, all in, done in
Janis was dog tired after the series. She played every game.

dog's age -- (See for a dog's age)

dog's breakfast -- (See a dog's breakfast)

dog's life -- (See a dog's life)

dogan -- Catholic, a member of the Roman Catholic Church
Catholic, a member of the Roman Catholic Church

doggone -- extremely annoying, god-damn, blasted
I can't find the doggone scissors again. This house must eat them!

doggy bag -- (See a doggy bag)

doggy doo -- dog poop, dog feces, doo-doo
Here, I brought a plastic bag for Lassie's doggy doo.

dollars to donuts -- (See bet you dollars to donuts)

dolled up -- in a party dress, with hair styled, gussied up
When Lisa gets all dolled up, Harry becomes very romantic.

D17. don't borrow trouble -- don't give me that line/story etc. Internet link don't borrow trouble

don't borrow trouble -- do not invite their trouble; we have enough trouble
When I said I was going to help my neighbor get a divorce, Pat said, "Don't borrow trouble."

don't count your chickens before they hatch -- do not expect all plans to be successful, wait until you get the final results
"Look at the sales I'm going to make this month - over 50!" "Don't count your chickens... ."

don't eat that -- do not accept that, do not believe that
After hearing the report, Ben said, "Don't eat that, guys."

don't get mad; get even -- do not waste your energy on anger, do get revenge; actions speak louder...
To the victims he said, "Don't get mad. Get even. Report this to the police."

don't get me wrong -- do not misunderstand; take it the wrong way
Don't get me wrong; I love literature, but I hate poetry.

don't get smart with me -- show more respect, do not talk back
If you ask why, she'll say, "Don't get smart with me."

don't give a crap [B] -- do not care at all, do not value it, don't give a damn
Janis doesn't care if he likes other girls. She said she doesn't give a crap.

don't give a damn [B] -- do not care, am not interested, give a shit [B]
Jack's late for class every day and I don't give a damn! He's a big boy now and it's his business!

don't give me any of your lip -- do not talk back, do not refuse to do what I ask
When the boy swore, she said, "Don't give me any of your lip."

don't give me that line/story etc. -- do not tell me that false story
Don't give me that line about a cure for the common cold.

D18. don't go away mad; just go away -- don't know whether you're coming or going Internet link don't go away mad; just go away

don't go away mad; just go away -- do not be angry, but leave; you are not welcome here
He said to the heckler, "Don't go away mad; just go away."

don't go there -- (See don't want to go there)

don't hand me that -- (See don't give me that)

don't have a cow -- don't become so excited or angry, chill out)
"Do you want a punch in the nose?" "Now, Ralph, don't have a cow."

don't hold your breath -- it is not going to happen soon, be prepared to wait
The City will repair the street but don't hold your breath.

don't knock it -- don't be negative, it could be worse
"I only got a C for my report." "Don't knock it. I got a D."

don't know him from Adam -- do not know who he is, have never met him
The man says he knows me, but I don't know him from Adam.

don't know the first thing about it -- do not know anything about it
I can't fix a transmission. I don't know the first thing about it.

don't know the half of it -- do not know all the facts, have not heard all of it
Yes, they got divorced, but you don't know the half of it.

don't know whether you're coming or going -- you are confused, you do not understand, go in circles
If you believe the cult leaders, you won't know whether you're coming or going.

D19. don't know which end is up -- don't push your luck Internet link don't know which end is up

don't know which end is up -- are confused, are mixed up
After talking to four bureaucrats, I didn't know which end was up.

don't know which side your bread is buttered on -- do not know what is really important, have not learned much about life
If you refuse the assistance, you don't know which side your bread is buttered on.

don't know your ass from a hole in the ground [B] -- you are ignorant, you are mistaken, mixed up
He said one member of the cult was so confused he didn't know his ass from a hole in the ground.

don't look a gift horse in the mouth -- do not be critical of a gift; be grateful for a gift
Don't evaluate a gift. Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

don't make a mountain out of a molehill -- do not cause a big fuss about a small problem
So I scratched the car. Don't make a mountain out of a molehill.

don't make me laugh -- do not be ridiculous, don't give me that line
When I said I wrote the novel, he said, "Don't make me laugh."

don't make no nevermind -- (See it don't make no nevermind)

don't make waves -- do not do anything that will cause problems
Our company has changed a lot. Don't make any more waves.

don't mention it -- it was no trouble, no problem
"Thanks for the ride," I said. "Don't mention it," he replied.

don't push your luck -- do not try to get too much, do not ask for more
If Mom says maybe, don't push your luck. Be patient.

D20. don't put all your eggs in one basket -- done it all Internet link don't put all your eggs in one basket

don't put all your eggs in one basket -- do not invest all the money in one company
Balance your investments. Don't put all your eggs in one basket.

don't rock the boat -- do not cause a change, do not upset anybody
If the team is winning, don't rock the boat. Don't change anything.

don't sweat it -- do not worry about it, you can't saw sawdust
If you did your best but didn't win a medal, don't sweat it.

don't teach your grandmother how to suck eggs -- do not tell me what I know, do not say what is obvious
You, a history major, telling me, a war veteran, about war? Don't teach your grandmother how to suck eggs!

don't think so -- do not believe it is so, think not
"Do you have dandruff?" "I don't think so."

don't want to go there -- do not want to talk about it, it is not a pleasant topic
My divorce? We don't want to go there. It's ugly!

done for -- defeated, beaten, hopeless
We were done for until Tim hit a home run and we won the game.

done good -- did well, performed well, did good
After watching the race, his dad said, "You done good, Son."

done in -- very tired, dead tired, all in
After the roundup, the old-timer was done in - exhausted.

done it all -- had a lot of experience, done every activity
We need a manager who's done it all - done all the jobs.

D21. done to a turn -- double or nothing Internet link done to a turn

done to a turn -- cooked or baked until very tasty
The steaks were done to a turn - brown and juicy.

done with it -- finished using it, not using it
Just leave the pen on my desk when you're done with it.

Donnybrook -- a fight involving many people - especially in a game of hockey
The Flames and the Oilers had another Donnybrook last night - a bench-clearing brawl.

doo-doo -- excrement, shit, doggy doo, in deep doo-doo, poop
My shoe really stinks. I must have stepped in some doo-doo!

door to door -- going from one house to the next house
We went door to door asking for donations for the team.

dork [B] -- penis, dick, hoo-haw
"Does your dork shrink after you've been swimming?" "Ya. That's natural."

dork [B] -- foolish person, dipstick, jerk, lamebrain
What a dork! He drove off the road to pass that car!

double-cross -- break a promise, cheat on someone
He promised not to tell you, but he did. He double-crossed me.

double-edged sword -- (See a double-edged sword)

double or nothing -- double the first bet and if I win, I owe nothing
After losing the first bet, I said, "Double or nothing this time?"

D22. double take -- down and out Internet link double take

double take -- look again in disbelief, can't believe my eyes
She did a double take when Clint Eastwood walked into the store.

double-talk -- confusing talk, bafflegab
His explanation of the government decision was a lot of double-talk.

double whammy -- two events or experiences that happen close together, synchronicity
Talk about a double whammy! My boss tells me I've lost my job, and you tell me I've won the lottery!

dough -- money, dollars, moola
Did you get some dough? We need money to buy groceries.

doughhead -- someone who does not think before acting
Don't ever call him a doughhead again. He's my boyfriend.

dove -- a person who wants peace, pacifist
The doves complained when the US built more nuclear weapons.

down -- sad, depressed, low
She's been down ever since her cat died. She misses her cat.

down a peg -- (See take him down a peg)

down and dirty -- not polite, rude, vulgar
The next song is down and dirty. It's called Snake's Pad.

down and out -- poor and unlucky, bumming and boozing
When he was down and out, he went to the Salvation Army.

D23. down for the count -- down the hatch Internet link down for the count

down for the count -- defeated by an opponent, out of the contest
Chad was down for the count. He couldn't get up.

down home -- simple but good, old fashioned
Hey, Ma. I can't wait to taste your down-home cookin'.

down in the dumps -- sad, not happy, depressed, down in the mouth
Shelly was down in the dumps until her boyfriend arrived.

down in the mouth -- looking sad, having a sad face, a sad sack
You'd be down in the mouth, too, if you'd just lost your job.

down my throat -- (See shove down my throat)

down on his luck -- not lucky lately, not happy or positive
With no money and no job, Ragnar was down on his luck.

down pat -- memorized, just right
Flora had her speech down pat. She had practised it many times.

down the drain -- lost, wasted, squandered
His fortune went down the drain when he began to gamble.

down the garden path -- (See lead you down the garden path)

down the hatch -- down the throat and into the stomach
Another pickled egg went down the hatch. Yum!

D24. down the line -- down to the wire Internet link  down the line

down the line -- in the future, later, down the road
Down the line, we'll meet again and laugh about our disagreement.

down the pike -- toward us, at us, what's going down
Management keeps sending complaints down the pike, and we don't send anything back!

down the road -- dismissed, fired
Disagree with the boss and you'll soon be down the road.

down the road -- in the future, in a few years
We plan to have an office in both cities - but that's down the road.

down the tubes -- lost or gone, ruined, up the creek
You have to advertise, or your business will go down the tubes.

down to a T -- perfectly, exactly, down pat
Sharon is wonderful in the play. She has her part down to a T.

down to brass tacks -- (See get down to brass tacks)

down to earth -- humble, not proud, the salt of the earth
I like Mrs. Wilson because she's so down to earth, so natural.

down to the short strokes -- nearly finished a job, almost completed a task
"How's it going? Are you nearly finished?" "We're down to the short strokes - we just have to paint the doors."

down to the wire -- to the last minute, near the end
The first two games went down to the wire - very close scores.

D25. down under -- drag Internet link down under

down under -- Australia, New Zealand, etc.
Next year I'm going down under for my holidays - New Zealand.

down with -- do not support, stop that plan, not
"Down with the sales tax!" they shouted. "Down with the tax!"

downer (drug) -- (See a downer)

downer (sadness) -- (See a downer)

downhearted -- sad, unhappy, down
"Are you downhearted, my dear?" "No. Just quiet, my love."

downplay -- say it is not important, soft pedal
They tried to downplay the fact that smoking caused the fire.

downside -- (See the downside)

downtime -- time needed to repair a machine
When you own a computer, you have to expect some downtime.

draft dodger -- a person who runs away from military service
American draft dodgers came to Canada in the 1970s.

drag -- (See a drag)

D26. drag it out -- draw a sober breath Internet link drag it out

drag it out -- take a long time to finish, speak for a long time
When James tells a ghost story, he drags it out for an hour.

drag on -- go for a long time, last for hours or days
The funeral dragged on and on - for three days!

drag queen -- man dressed in women's clothing, transvestite
Don's a transvestite. They call him "the drag queen of Fag Street."

drag race -- two cars racing from a stop light
"Did you see the drag race?" "Ya. The Corvette won."

drag your feet -- work too slow, prevent progress
They're dragging their feet. Tell them to work faster.

dragged through a... -- (See look like he was dragged through a knothole)

drain the swamp -- remove what prevents a clear view of the problem
If I were manager, my first step would be to drain the swamp.

drat -- oh no, nuts, rats, scrut
Drat! I've lost the key. How can we get into the apartment?

draw a blank -- be unable to think of an answer, mind go blank
For some reason, I drew a blank when the professor questioned me.

draw a sober breath -- be sober, not be drunk
They say he hasn't drawn a sober breath since his son was killed.

D27. draw attention to -- dress down Internet link draw attention to

draw attention to -- ask people to notice; show or display to people
If you wear a short skirt, you draw attention to your legs.

draw first blood -- attack first, be first to hit or win
The Jets drew first blood in the series, winning game one 5-4.

draw it to my attention -- tell me about it, cause me to be aware of it
Spelling is a problem. Thanks for drawing it to my attention.

draw the line -- stop, refuse to do it
When it comes to drugs, he draws the line. He won't touch them.

draw their fire -- get attention while a friend moves or escapes
You draw their fire while I move behind them. You distract them.

draw upon -- recall and use, remember
At university, I drew upon my knowledge of Russian history.

drawing card -- entertainment to attract people, loss leader
The community hired a comedian as a drawing card for the fair.

dream on -- you are not being realistic, get your head out...
You expect me to buy you a Corvette? Dream on!

dress clothes -- good, expensive clothes
"Why don't you change your dress clothes before you repair the car?"

dress down -- (See a dressing down)

D28. dress down -- drive a hard bargain Internet link dress down

dress down -- dress in casual clothes, dress informally
It's a library party, so dress down. Wear something casual.

dress rehearsal -- the last rehearsal before the performance, dry run
All actors must come to the dress rehearsal - our last practice.

dress rehearsal -- the last rehearsal before the performance, dry run
All actors must come to the dress rehearsal - our last practice.

dress up -- dress in your best clothes, put on glad rags
Everybody got dressed up for the banquet. Roy wore his new suit.

dressed fit to kill -- dressed in party clothes, dolled up, dress up, gussied up
In walks Erica, dressed fit to kill. She looked terrific!

dressed to the nines -- dressed in high fashion, gussied up
Here I am in jeans. Everybody else is dressed to the nines.

dribs and drabs -- (See in dribs and drabs)

drink like a fish -- drink a lot of liquor every day
If Hal is coming to visit, buy lots of beer. He drinks like a fish.

drink up -- drink your wine etc., bottoms up
Drink up, my friends. It's Buddy's birthday!

drink you under the table -- drink more liquor than you, drink and not pass out, put you away
After three glasses of beer, you're nearly drunk. I bet I can drink you under the table!

drive a hard bargain -- pay a low price, negotiate firmly
When buying land, Cal drives a hard bargain. He pays low prices.

D29. drive around -- drive you to distraction Internet link drive around

drive around -- drive a car up and down the streets, tooling around
At night we drove around town, looking for something to do.

drive it home -- make a message clear, say it so they understand
When you talk about safe sex, drive it home. Stress safety.

drive me batty -- cause me to be insane, drive me crazy
The noise from that motorcycle is driving me batty!

drive me crazy -- cause me to feel crazy, bug me a lot
That TV commercial drives me crazy! It's on every channel!

drive me to the edge -- cause me to be nearly mad or insane
When those chipmunks sing, it drives me to the edge!

drive me up the wall -- cause me to feel anxious; go around the bend
I won't babysit at the Kaplans. The kids drive me up the wall.

drive standard -- shift gears on a car or truck
Can you drive standard? My car has a five-speed transmission.

drive you -- hit you, punch you, cream you
If you get pushy, he'll drive you. He's got a bad temper

drive you nuts -- cause you to feel crazy, drive you crazy (see drive me crazy)
Working for Harry will drive you nuts. He's a perfectionist.

drive you to distraction -- cause you to lose thoughts, drive me up the wall
Her continual chatter will drive you to distraction.

D30. drop dead -- drop off Internet link drop dead

drop dead -- you are badly mistaken, go to hell [B]
If you think I'm getting on that motorcycle, you can drop dead.

drop her/him -- leave her, not date her anymore, tube her (see tube him)
She wouldn't quit smoking, so I dropped her - told her it was off.

drop him like a hot potato -- leave him, not associate with him
If she finds out you're not rich, she'll drop you like a hot potato.

drop in -- visit, go to see, drop over
When you come to Edmonton, be sure to drop in for a visit.

drop-in -- visitor, one who drops in
He was a drop-in at the Seniors' Centre. He liked to go there.

drop in the bucket -- (See a drop in the bucket)

drop it -- stop talking about it, do not say any more
When I mentioned his accident, he told me to drop it.

drop like flies -- dying in great numbers, falling dead on the floor
When a pox infected the tribe, people were dropping like flies.

drop off -- deliver, drive and leave a parcel
I'll drop off the parcel today. What's your address?

drop off -- go to sleep, doze, fall asleep
I only dropped off for a second. I was awake for the news.

D31. drop off -- drugstore cowboy Internet link drop off

drop off -- reduce, diminish, slip, slow down
Sales have dropped off recently. Maybe we should advertise.

drop out -- quit, stop attending
I have decided not to drop out of school. I'm going to continue.

drop out of sight -- disappear, not be seen for awhile
After the scandal, he dropped out of sight. I haven't seen him.

drop over -- visit, come and talk
Our friends dropped over last night for a cup of coffee.

drop the ball -- fail to do or complete a task, not follow through
Who dropped the ball? I'll tell you who! We dropped the ball - you and I. We need to take responsibility for our lives and our world!

drop the other shoe -- (See wait for the other shoe to drop)

drop your drawers -- take your pants down, remove your shorts
Don't you hate it when you have to drop your drawers for a nurse?

drop your gloves (hockey) -- remove your gloves to fight with your fists
Don't drop your gloves in this game. There's no fighting.

drown your sorrow -- drink until the sadness goes away
Jay drowned her sorrow in wine. Then she had a headache.

drugstore cowboy -- a boy or man dressed like a cowboy, a fake cowboy, dude
"Are you a drugstore cowboy?" "No sir. I got Wrangler jeans an' dung on my boots - I chew tobacco an' I c'n spit real good!"

D32. drum up -- ducky Internet link drum up

drum up -- create interest in, recruit, find some customers
We have a million widgets to sell. Let's drum up some customers.

dry out -- stop using alcohol, on the wagon
She's drying out at a treatment centre. It's a four-week program.

dry run -- complete rehearsal, walk through
Let's do a dry run of our play so I can add the background music.

dry up -- stop talking, be quiet
I wish he'd dry up. He talks too much.

dubs -- everyone pays for his own food; Dutch treat
If we go to the cafe, it's dubs. We each pay for our own treat.

duck out -- leave, run away, desert, skip out, jam
"Where did you go?" "I ducked out when the gang walked in."

duck soup -- easy, quick, a piece of cake
If you know how to move the decimal point, calculating a percentage is easy - it's duck soup!

duck's guts -- (See it's the duck's guts)

ducks in a row (ducks in order) -- organized, planned; each person knows his job
I have to get my ducks in a row before the sale on Tuesday.

ducky -- great, fine, lovely
"Somebody left the gate open and the horses are gone!" "That's ducky, just ducky!"

D33. dude -- dump on Internet link dude

dude -- a man who dresses like a cowboy or rancher to impress people, any guy who dresses and acts cool, drugstore cowboy
Hey dude! Got your party clothes on? You look real pretty!

due north -- straight north, directly north
Follow the winding road west to the junction; then go due north.

duh -- how stupid, do you know anything? go figure, ignorance is bliss
I didn't know how to spell comeuppance. Duh!

duke it out -- fight with your fists, punch each other
Gerry wanted to duke it out with the referee - tried to punch him.

duke's mixture -- (See a duke's mixture )

dumb as a sack of hammers -- (See as dumb as a sack of hammers)

dumbbell -- one who does not think, an airhead, knucklehead
What a dumbbell I am! I locked the keys in the car.

dumbo -- a person who acts stupid, a fool, a dipstick
Hey, dumbo! You're driving on the wrong side of the road!

dump her/him -- leave her or him, drop her, tube her (see tube him)
Sid and Marie had a fight, so he dumped her and began seeing me.

dump on -- unload the dirty jobs, give what is left over
They dump on Karen too much. They give her the large classes.

D34. Dumpster diving -- dying seconds Internet link Dumpster diving

Dumpster diving -- searching in the garbage to find bottles etc.
No. This college does not offer a course in Dumpster diving.

durn -- (See darn)

dust -- ruined, dead, done for, toast
If you smuggle drugs into the US, you're dust. You'll go to jail.

dust bunny -- ball of dust on the floor, dust that looks like fur
On Saturday morning I vacuum up the dust bunnies before I go out.

dust devil -- small whirlwind, twister
Dust devils seemed to follow us as we walked across the field.

dust-up -- (See a dust-up)

Dutch treat -- everyone pays for his/her own lunch etc.; dubs
When we go for eats, let's go Dutch. That's fair, eh.

duty calls -- it is my duty, I must do a task
"Duty calls," he said, opening a book to begin his homework.

dyed in the wool -- confirmed, certain of his beliefs, card-carrying ...
A dyed-in-the-wool democrat - that's me. I believe in democracy.

dying seconds -- (See the dying seconds)

D35. dying to know -- dying to know Internet link dying to know

dying to know -- wants to know, is very curious
Amy is dying to know the name of the guy in the leather jacket.

End of TIL page






C01. c'est la vie -- call it a day Internet link c'est la vie

c'est la vie -- that is fate, that's life
If you have bad luck some days, it's natural. C'est la vie!

Cabbagetown -- a district in Toronto where European immigrants live
Restaurants in Cabbagetown serve European food.

cabin fever -- feeling depressed because you have to stay inside
After three weeks of cold weather we all had cabin fever.

cackleberries -- eggs, chicken eggs
Look! This hen laid five cackleberries!

call a spade a spade -- say it in plain language; the straight goods
Kris will report the facts. She's not afraid to call a spade a spade.

call attention to -- ask you to read or notice, draw attention to
I would like to call attention to the student parking problem.

call for -- require, ask for
This recipe calls for bee pollen. Where can we get that?

call his bluff -- challenge his story, give it to me straight, put up or shut up
When I called his bluff about low profits, he admitted that the company made 11 million.

call into account -- consider, factor in, reckon with, account for
If you want to go to Ottawa on the first of July, you have to call holiday traffic into account.

call it a day -- not work anymore today, call it quits
I'm feeling very tired. I think I'll call it a day.

C02. call it quits -- calm down Internet link call it quits

call it quits -- stop doing something, quit what you are doing
The dust is bothering all of us. I think we should call it quits.

call it square -- we do not owe each other, it is a wash, we are even
I bought the pizza; you bought the beer. Let's call it square.

call off -- cancel, postpone
They called off the concert because the lead singer is sick.

call off the dogs -- tell your friends to stop harassing me
Okay, I'll pay what I owe you. But call off the dogs!

call on -- ask, request
I may call on you to speak at the meeting. Will you speak to us?

call tabs -- collect money from bar customers
If customers are drunk, you call their tabs and ask them to leave.

call the shots -- make the decisions, decide what happens
Mr. Binks may be the president, but Ms. Barker calls the shots.

call up -- phone, dingle you, give me a ring,
Call her up and ask her for a date. Go ahead, phone her.

calm before the storm -- (See the calm before the storm)

calm down -- not be so upset, settle down
Please calm down, Mr. Tse. Your daughter is safe.

C03. camel toes [B] -- can't help Internet link camel toes [B]

camel toes [B] -- the folds of the vagina revealed by tight jeans
When Betty wears her old jeans you can see her camel toes.

can -- (See the can)

can -- dismiss, fire, let go
He was canned for drinking liquor at work. They dismissed him.

can help it -- can stop it, can prevent it
Abortion won't become legal if he can help it. He's against it.

can it -- stop it, knock it off
Miss Schmidt heard a boy say, "Can it! Here comes the teacher."

can of worms -- a controversial issue, an old problem
Gun control - let's not open that can of worms!

can't believe my ears -- cannot believe what I hear, it is unbelievable
The cat is babysitting the kids? I can't believe my ears!

can't believe my eyes -- cannot believe what I see, it is unbelievable
When you walked into that cafe, I couldn't believe my eyes.

can't have it both ways -- you have to choose one or the other; cannot have your cake...
When children are allowed to make choices, they learn that they can't have it both ways.

can't help -- cannot prevent, cannot stop
I can't help crying at weddings. They make me feel sad.

C04. can't hold a candle -- canned Internet link can't hold a candle

can't hold a candle -- (See hold a candle)

can't put my finger on it -- cannot remember the exact words
I know the answer, but I can't put my finger on it.

can't put my hands on it -- cannot remember exactly where it is
Your book is in my office, but I can't put my hands on it now.

can't see for looking -- cannot see because I have been looking too long
Will you try to find my glove? I can't see for looking.

can't see the forest for the trees -- I am so close that I cannot see the whole picture or the big picture
I'm so involved in teaching that I've lost my view of education. I can't see the forest for the trees.

can't stand -- does not like, hate
Don can't stand love songs. He thinks the words are silly.

Canada goose -- getting goosed in Canada by a Canadian
"There," he said. "Now you've had your Canada goose."

canary -- a person who tells the police, a squealer
Ken - that canary! He tells the boss who comes in late.

candy-ass -- a person without courage or confidence
Larry, that candy-ass! He's afraid to play me because he may lose.

canned -- prepared, memorized, a pat answer
His answers sound canned, like he memorized them.

C05. Canuck -- carry on Internet link Canuck

Canuck -- a Canadian, a citizen of Canada, Johnny Canuck
When we visited Montana, a clerk called us "Canucks."

capture the imagination -- cause a person to imagine a scene or character
The story of Jacob Two-Two will capture the kids' imagination.

car buff -- a person who loves to repair or restore cars
Colin has been a car buff ever since he bought his first Ford.

card -- (See such a card)

card-carrying member -- a regular member, a person on the membership list
Only card-carrying members will be allowed to attend the meeting.

caribouboo -- a mistake made by a caribou, make a booboo
"Why did the caribou get lost?" "He made a caribouboo! Ha ha!"

carry a tune -- sing well, sing in tune, pipes
Ask June to lead the singing. She can carry a tune.

carry it off -- make it happen, pull it off
This project requires planning and skill, but he can carry it off.

carry on -- continue, keep on
Carry on with your game. I'll wait until you're finished.

carry on -- talk or act silly, not be sensible
They were kissing in church. Imagine carrying on like that!

C06. carry out -- case of Internet link carry out

carry out -- do, complete, execute
Now that we have the loan we can carry out our plan.

carry the can -- be responsible, see that the job gets done
The manager gets a big salary, but Mario carries the can.

carry the conversation -- continue the conversation, continue talking to you
Visiting with Sally is easy. She carries the conversation!

carry the day -- provide enough energy or support, fill the gap
We need one more volunteer. If you can come it will carry the day.

carry weight -- have influence, have power
Nina is a good reference; her name carries a lot of weight.

carry your weight -- do your share of the work, do enough work
If you carry your weight, you can work here for the summer.

cart before the horse -- (See the cart before the horse)

cascade (business) -- allow information to flow down to the employees
Archie thinks we should control this information, not cascade it.

case in point -- an example to support my point or thesis
Social democracy can succeed. Sweden is a case in point.

case of -- (See a case of)

C07. cash and carry -- cat got your tongue Internet link cash and carry

cash and carry -- pay cash and carry it out of the store (no deliveries)
The ad stated the terms of the sale: CASH & CARRY.

cash cow -- a source of much money, a profitable resource
Alberta's cash cow - oil - is helping to balance the budget.

cash flow -- money spent on the operation of a business
Calculate your weekly business expenses. That's your cash flow.

cash in -- receive cash for bonds or poker chips; profit from
You're retired now. It may be time to cash in your bonds.

cash on the barrelhead -- pay cash to the owner at the time of purchase; cold, hard cash
The old man said, "To buy my pony you'll have to pay $300 - cash on the barrelhead."

cash on the line -- pay the full price in cash to the seller
I'll pay $200 for the bike - cash on the line.

cash up/cash out -- count all the cash at the end of a business day
After you cash up, put the money in the safe and lock it.

cast a spell -- use charm or spiritual power to change people
When Pavarotti sings, he casts a spell on his audience.

cast your vote -- vote in an election, mark your ballot
Before you cast your vote, think carefully about the issues.

cat got your tongue -- why do you not speak? lose your tongue?
Before I could reply, she said, "Cat got your tongue?"

C08. cat's ass -- catch a ride Internet link cat's ass

cat's ass -- (See the cat's ass)

cat's meow -- (See the cat's meow)

cat's out of the bag -- (See the cat's out of the bag)

catcall -- shouting disapproval or insults, heckling
The catcalls from the audience caused the speaker to pause.

catch 22 -- the cause is the effect and the effect is the cause
It was catch 22. I needed my glasses to find my glasses.

catch a buzz -- begin to feel intoxicated, begin to feel natural high
This is strong beer. You catch a buzz from drinking one bottle!

catch a cold (catch cold) -- be sick with a cold, come down with a cold
I caught a cold while we were in Vancouver.

catch a glimpse -- see for only a second, visible for a brief time
I caught a glimpse of Sue at the mall, but she didn't see me.

catch a plane/bus/train -- go to the airport and get on the plane
After the meeting, you can catch the plane to Toronto.

catch a ride -- ride with someone who has a vehicle, get a lift
When I go to church, I catch a ride with my neighbor Lila.

C09. catch as catch can -- catch some z's Internet link catch as catch can

catch as catch can -- no order, get what you can
The Clearance Sale was catch as catch can - each one for himself.

catch hell [B] -- get a scolding or lecture, get it, get shit [B]
"Did you catch hell for cheating?" "Yes. The teacher lectured me and gave me zero on the exam."

catch it -- get a scolding or lecture, catch hell [B]
Did you catch it for coming in late? Was your mom mad?

catch me by surprise -- surprise me, not warn me
The snowstorm in May caught us by surprise. We didn't expect it.

catch me doing that -- see me doing that, find me doing that
You won't catch me skydiving. It's too dangerous.

catch on -- learn how to do, learn the ropes
We need trainees who catch on quickly - people who learn fast.

catch on -- get work, get a job, hire on
Maybe you can catch on with a survey crew for the summer.

catch phrase -- idiom, popular phrase, buzzword
There's a catch phrase for Newfoundland: The Rock.

catch some rays -- have a sun bath, get a sun tan, bag some rays
When we get to Hawaii, you can catch some rays. It's sunny there.

catch some z's -- sleep, get some rest, crash
Do you mind if I catch some z's on your couch? I'm sleepy.

C10. catch the wave -- catch your eye Internet link catch the wave

catch the wave -- join the trend, do what is popular
Condos are popular now. Should we buy one and catch the wave?

catch up -- arrive later, join you
You go ahead. I'll catch up with you at the bus stop.

catch-up -- (See play catch-up)

catch up on -- do something that you have neglected
Ali can't go to the movie. He has to catch up on his homework.

catch up with -- revealed or exposed, come back to haunt you
When your lies catch up with you, it's embarrassing.

catch you at a bad time -- visit or call when it is inconvenient
You look very sad. Did I catch you at a bad time?

catch you later -- I will talk to you later, I will see you later
I have to leave now. Catch you later.

catch you off guard -- surprise you, say what you do not expect
Did my comment about dog poop catch you off guard?

catch your death -- become very ill, catch a bad cold
In this terrible weather, put on a coat or you'll catch your death.

catch your eye -- cause you to look, get your attention
When I was in Paris, a Peugeot cabriolet caught my eye. Ah!

C11. caught dead -- caution Internet link caught dead

caught dead -- (See wouldn't be caught dead)

caught flatfooted -- not ready to respond, mind in neutral
Esposito was caught flatfooted by Lemaire's slapshot - an easy goal!

caught in the act -- caught doing a crime, caught with his pants down
Two of the boys were caught in the act of vandalism. They were breaking car windows.

caught looking -- be looking when you should have been acting
I was caught looking when he hit the ball. I just watched it.

caught red-handed -- caught with evidence, caught in the act
The smuggler was caught red-handed with a kilo of cocaine.

caught up -- busy with, involved
Maidra is caught up in church activities. She's very busy.

caught up -- be finished, completed the required work
I want to get caught up on my cleaning before we have guests.

caught with his pants down -- found doing a bad act, caught in the act
Percy was caught cheating - caught with his pants down.

cauliflower ear -- a human ear that looks like a small cauliflower
After years of playing rugby Ron had a cauliflower ear. It had been bumped and injured too many times.

caution -- (See a caution)

C12. cave in -- chances are Internet link cave in

cave in -- quit, be unable to cope, fold
One more crisis and I'll cave in. I'm very weary.

cement hands -- awkward hands, butter fingers
Joey can't type; he's got cement hands.

chain letter -- a letter that is copied and sent to other people
This letter says I will have bad luck if I break the chain.

chain of command -- order of those in power, line of authority
If you are a lieutenant, the chain of command goes up and down.

chain reaction -- one event causing a sequence of events
Abe sold his shares, causing a chain reaction in the market.

chain smoker -- a person who smokes one cigarette after another, smokes like a furnace
"Do all chain smokers die of emphysema?" "No, but most of them do."

chairman of the boards (hockey) -- a player who controls play along the boards
In the 1970s Doug was chairman of the boards for the Hawks.

chalk it up to -- conclude that it is..., attribute it to...
You tried and you failed. Chalk it up to experience. Learn from it.

chalk one up for you -- you have earned a point, you won that point/game
Good shot! I'll chalk one up for you.

chances are -- it is quite possible, it may be
Chances are they're lost, and that's why they're late.

C13. change for the better -- charity begins at home Internet link change for the better

change for the better -- improve, become better
My attitude has changed for the better. I'm more positive now.

change hands -- change owners, be sold or traded
That condo changed hands three times in one year - three owners!

change horses in mid stream -- change plans/methods after you have begun a competition or business
We're in the furniture business, not clothing. We can't change horses in mid stream.

change of heart -- change from negative to positive
Now he seems friendly toward us. Has he had a change of heart?

change of heart -- change from negative to positive
Now he seems friendly toward us. Has he had a change of heart?

change your mind -- choose a different plan, change your decision
Please change your mind about leaving home. Please don't go.

change your tune -- change your attitude, change your mind
If the price of a barrel of oil goes down, he'll change his tune.

change your tune -- change your attitude, change your mind
If the price of a barrel of oil goes down, he'll change his tune.

character assassination -- saying things that ruin a person's reputation, muckrake
"What did they say about him?" "It was mainly gossip and character assassination."

character density -- number of dense people, number of dummies
If I join your company, the character density will decrease.

charge it -- buy or purchase on credit, put it on the bill
The clerk said, "If you don't have cash, you can charge it."

charity begins at home -- first help the needy in your own community; then help others
If you want to help the poor, remember that charity begins at home.

C14. charley horse -- check it out Internet link charley horse

charley horse -- soreness in a muscle, cramp in a calf muscle, pull a muscle
"Did you hurt your leg playing baseball?" "Yes, I slid into third base and now I have a charley horse."

chaser -- a soft drink to follow a hard drink, a weaker drink
The old man drank coffee as a chaser for the Irish whisky.

chasing rainbows -- trying to achieve an impossible goal
Many young actors are chasing rainbows - hoping for fame.

chat her up -- talk to her about a date, talk romantically to her
If you like Mila, chat her up. Say nice things to her.

cheap -- unwilling to spend money, not generous, tight
They refuse to buy the boy a decent suit. They're too cheap.

cheap drunk -- (See a cheap drunk)

cheap like borsch -- not expensive, as cheap as vegetable soup ( borsch may also be spelled borsh, borscht or borshch, showing that we lack an authoritative mapping from the Russian to the English alphabet  )
I didn't pay much for this jacket. It was cheap like borsch.

cheap skate -- a person who does not pay his share, a tight-ass
That cheap skate can keep his money. I'll pay for the tickets.

cheat on -- break a marriage promise, be unfaithful
He cheats on his wife. Now he's sleeping with a waitress.

check it out -- inquire, find out about
Check it out. It may be a great opportunity.

C15. check out -- checkup Internet link check out

check out -- find out about, see if it is okay
Let's check out that Subaru we saw at Chong's Used Cars.

check-out -- the counter where you pay for your purchases
The shoppers were lined up at the Canadian Tire check-out.

check over -- look for errors in a paper, see if there are mistakes
I've written a letter of application. Will you check it over for me?

check that -- look at that, get a load of that
When Rick saw the sports car, he said, "Check that!"

check this out -- look at this, eyeball this, peep this
Hey! Check this out! Carly's got a boyfriend!

check up on -- see if everything is fine or safe
He went to check up on the kids because they were crying.

check up on -- supervise, watch to see if it is done correctly
They don't like a manager who is always checking up on them.

check your bags -- give your luggage to the ticket agent
I would like to check my bags. Will you put them on the plane?

checkered career -- career with failures, history of good and bad
His checkered career may ruin his chance of being elected.

checkup -- doctor's examination, medical examination
If you aren't feeling well, go to the doctor for a checkup.

C16. cheek -- cherrypicker (hockey) Internet link cheek

cheek -- sharp reply, sarcasm, lip
When I called Mom a crab, she said, "No more of your cheek!"

cheek by jowl -- beside, alongside, side by side
Jack and James fought cheek by jowl in World War I.

cheeky -- rude, impolite, lippy, sassy
Tara is too cheeky. She told her mom to stop flirting with men.

cheerio -- goodbye, bye for now, so long, toodle-oo
"Cheerio, dear. See you at lunchtime!"

cheers -- a British toast or greeting meaning good health to you or goodbye and good wishes, chimo, ciao
I raise my glass to a great leader: Sir Winston Churchill. Cheers!

cheery-bye -- goodbye, bye, cheerio
I'll see you tomorrow. Cheery-bye!

cheesecake -- naked flesh, bare skin
The dancer provided lots of cheesecake - lots of bare leg.

cheesed off -- upset, annoyed, ticked off
They were cheesed off when I said you wouldn't pay them.

cheesy -- poor quality, crappy, shabby
The acting was pretty cheesy. The actors didn't know their lines.

cherrypicker (hockey) -- a player who waits at center ice for a pass
Our coach told us about the cherrypicker on the other team.

C17. chestnut -- chicken on a June bug Internet link chestnut

chestnut -- old favorite song, well-known story
Moira played the piano, and we sang old songs - old chestnuts.

chew him out -- lecture him, scold him, give him hell (see give you hell) [B]
My sister chewed me out for taking her car. She gave me hell.

chew the fat/ chew the rag -- talk, visit, have a chin wag
I'll go and get the wine while you two relax and chew the fat.

chick -- girl, woman
We were waiting for the bus, and this chick says, "Hi, boys."

chick flick -- film for women, movie about a woman or women
Steel Magnolias is a chick flick about life in the southern US.

chicken -- afraid, scared, yellow
When it comes to heights, I'm chicken. I'm scared.

chicken -- a coward, a person who is not brave, wimp
I'm not a fighter, but I'm not a chicken. I just don't believe in violence.

chicken feed -- small amount of money, a paltry sum, peanuts
Don't worry about a few dollars for books. It's chicken feed.

chicken in every pot -- (See a chicken in every pot)

chicken on a June bug -- (See like a chicken on a June bug)

C18. chickens come home to roost -- chip off the old block Internet link chickens come home to roost

chickens come home to roost -- we cannot escape the consequences of our actions
We soon discover that lies return to their owner, just as chickens come home to roost.

chickenshit [B] -- (See chicken)

chief cook and bottle washer -- manager, supervisor
Hal is the chief cook and bottle washer for our school supper.

chill out -- pause to gain control of your emotions, cool off
I think you should chill out before you see the supervisor.

chime in -- add a word or phrase to a conversation, two cents' worth
"I want a piece of cake, too," Izzie chimed in. "Please."

chimo -- an Inuit expression meaning "Goodbye. It was nice talking to you," bye for now, ciao
"I'm glad we finally met!" "Yes, we had a good visit. Chimo!"

chin wag -- (See a chin wag)

chintzy -- unwilling to spend, cheap, tight
Don't be so chintzy with your time. Volunteer to visit seniors.

chip in -- each one help to pay for, everybody pay a little
We should chip in and buy Sadie a gift when she moves away.

chip off the old block -- (See a chip off the old block)

C19. chip on his shoulder -- chops Internet link chip on his shoulder

chip on his shoulder -- in a fighting mood, looking for a fight
Ron has a chip on his shoulder. He's arguing with everybody.

chips are down -- (See when the chips are down)

chock full -- ery full, full to the top, chockablock, plump full
The truck was chock full of paper to be recycled.

chockablock -- tightly packed, crammed in one place, chock full
The square was chockablock with people - all looking at the pope.

choke -- be so nervous you cannot perform or do it well
Don't even think about choking when you make your speech.

choked -- angry, mad, pissed
She was really choked when you called her a bitch.

chomping at the bit -- eager to go, anxious to leave
If you mention camping, the kids will be chomping at the bit.

choose sides -- help one side or team, take sides
Some of the students will dislike you if you choose sides.

choose up sides -- choose people to play on two or more teams
Let's choose up sides and play a game of volleyball.

chops -- lips and teeth, mouth
You need big chops to play the tuba, eh.

C20. chow -- claim to fame Internet link chow

chow -- food, something to eat
I'm starved. Let's get some chow.

chow down -- eat, have a meal
I'm hungry. Let's chow down before we go to the movie.

Christmas graduate -- a student who leaves college at Christmas
Among the Christmas graduates last year was Gerard Kutz.

chromedome -- bald person, silkhead
Chromedomes can tell you the advantages of being bald.

chuck it -- put it in the garbage, junk it
We used to say chuck it, but now we say recycle it.

chunk of change -- (See a chunk of change)

ciao -- goodbye, see you later
Ciao, Tony. See you in Rome.

circles around you -- much better than you, no contest
Why do you play cards with her? She can play circles around you.

circular file -- garbage can or wastebasket, file 13
A lot of memos go in the circular file. They're garbage.

claim to fame -- what you have done to cause you to be famous
Besides passing math, what's your claim to fame?

C21. clam -- clean up Internet link clam

clam -- dollar, buck
He paid a hundred clams for that radio.

clam up -- stop talking, become quiet
Why do you clam up when we mention Judy? Why so quiet?

claptrap -- nonsense, trivia, bull
I heard what the psychic said. What a lot of claptrap!

class act -- a fine person, a lady, a gentleman, first class
Do you know Stephen Lewis? Now there's a class act!

claws are showing -- show resentment or envy or jealousy, if looks could kill
When you talked about Carla, your claws were showing. Do you dislike her?

clean bill of health -- (See a clean bill of health) -- Editor's note:  double entry in the original

clean cut -- well groomed, clean, neat
We're looking for clean-cut boys to work as waiters.

clean me out -- buy all I have, steal everything I own
The thieves cleaned us out. They took everything in our house.

clean up -- pick up garbage, put away clothes or toys, wash
Lorne, please clean up the mess in your bedroom.

C22. clean up on -- clear up Internet Link clean up on

clean up on -- defeat, beat, whip you, wipe you
Little Chad cleaned up on big Clint. Chad is quite a fighter.

clean up your act -- do it better, do it legally, get your act together
I've missed classes, failed tests. I need to clean up my act.

clean up your plate -- finish eating all the food on your plate, eat it up
You may leave the table after you've cleaned up your plate.

clear as a bell -- easy to hear or understand, clearly audible
We heard him say it. He said no, clear as a bell.

clear as mud -- not understandable, confusing
Mr. Lee explained the formula. Then he said, "Clear as mud, eh?"

clear out -- leave, go, get out, take off
When the gang arrived, we cleared out. We left in a hurry.

clear out -- sell at a low price, sell at a discount
We're clearing out last year's stock at 20% off.

clear sailing -- (See smooth sailing)

clear the air -- explain, talk about a problem openly
His statement will clear the air. It will prevent more confusion.

clear up -- explain, discuss so everyone understands
Let's clear up the matter of the missing keys. Were they stolen?

C23. clear your head/mind -- clotheslined (hockey) Internet Link clear your head/mind

clear your head/mind -- relax so you can think clearly
After an argument I need time to clear my head, to become calm.

click in -- become aware, realize, dawn on, hit me
It didn't click in that he was hurt until I saw the blood on his shirt.

cliff-hanger -- (See a cliff-hanger)

climb the walls -- feel upset or stressed, go bonkers, go crazy
On the first day of school, the teacher was climbing the walls.

close a deal/sale -- complete a sale to a customer
Vi knows how to close a sale. She's a good closer.

close call -- (See a close call)

close shave -- (See a close shave)

close to the vest -- hidden, covered, not showing your cards
Walter plays close to the vest. He doesn't let me see his cards.

closer -- (See wheeler-dealer)

clotheslined (hockey) -- lifted by a bodycheck, hanging over the checker or the boards
Orr was clotheslined just as he crossed the line. What a check!

C24. clouds on the horizon -- coffee talk Internet Link clouds on the horizon

clouds on the horizon -- a problem has appeared, something is wrong, the sky isn't blue
We have achieved our goals, but there are clouds on the horizon. The government is going to cancel our funding.

clued in -- aware, in the know, with it
"How do you get clued in?" "You watch and listen, man."

clueless -- not informed, ignorant, not with it
When I don't know the answer, I try not to look clueless.

clunker -- a car that is in poor condition, a beater
Uncle Blair has bought another clunker - an old Pontiac.

clutch hitter (baseball) -- (See a clutch hitter)

clutz -- (See klutz)

cock and bull [B] -- nonsense, bull, BS [B]
Don't believe that cock-and-bull story about Bigfoot.

cocky -- proud, smartass
"Why is Len acting so cocky?" "He won the Frisbee contest."

cocoon -- stay inside your home to feel comfortable and safe
We don't want to go out tonight. We feel like cocooning.

coffee talk -- conversation while having coffee, water-cooler...
I don't believe Sally's pregnant. It's just coffee talk, just gossip.

C25. coin -- collect my thoughts Internet Link coin

coin -- money, loot, dough, serious coin
Wait till I get some coin. Then we can travel.

coin a phrase -- (See to coin a phrase)

cold call -- a visit to an employer or customer without an appointment
Sam got a job by making cold calls - by knocking on doors and asking for work.

cold comfort -- very little comfort, satisfaction in theory not reality
If Jim dies, having his money is cold comfort for his wife.

cold feet -- (See get cold feet)

cold shoulder -- (See give you the cold shoulder)

cold turkey -- abruptly, completely, not gradually
Barb stopped smoking, cold turkey. No plan, no program.

cold, hard cash -- actual money, dollar bills; not a check or credit card
No checks - I want cold, hard cash for that car.

coldcock -- punch without warning, jump
Buddy coldcocked the pitcher - hit him when he wasn't looking.

collect my thoughts -- think calmly and clearly, organize my thoughts
She was glad when the kids left so she could collect her thoughts.

C26. collecting dust -- come back to haunt you Internet link collecting dust

collecting dust -- not used for a long time, idle, gathering dust
"Where's the silver tray?" "On the shelf, collecting dust."

come [B] -- have an orgasm, ejaculate
Some women fake an orgasm - they pretend to come, eh.

come across -- seem to be, appear to be
You came across as being angry, not just disappointed.

come across -- discover, find
I came across an antique basin in the attic. It was in a box.

come across -- give, pay, pay up
They came across with $250 - half the money they owe us.

come across [B] -- consent to have sex, get laid, go all the way
You kiss me as though you're going to come across, but then you say no.

come again -- what did you say? beg your pardon?
When I asked Grandpa if he liked the soup, he said, "Come again?"

come alive -- become lively, cheer, applaud
As the players skated onto the ice, the crowd came alive.

come around -- begin to co-operate, believe, come onside
When he reads the report, he'll come around. He'll believe us.

come back to haunt you -- cause you to feel guilty or ashamed
Lies will come back to haunt you, remind you of the past.

C27. come by -- come home to roost Internet Link come by

come by -- find, get, obtain
How did you come by that vase? Where did you get it?

come clean -- tell the truth, admit everything, own up
The police asked him to come clean about the money - to tell them everything he knew.

come down hard -- punish hard, throw the book at
The teachers come down hard on cheating. They suspend cheaters.

come down off your high horse -- (See get off your high horse)

come down on like a ton of bricks -- reprove, punish harshly
Whenever I make the slightest mistake, my boss comes down on me like a ton of bricks.

come down to earth -- be realistic, get your head out of the clouds
If she'd come down to earth, if she'd stop dreaming about fame, she could pass her exams.

come down with -- become sick, become ill
Brenda came down with the flu. She's very sick.

come full circle -- arrive at the place where you began
"Let's ask the teacher, okay?"
"If we do that, we'll have come full circle. Remember?"

come hell or high water -- no matter what happens, by any means
I'll buy that ranch, come hell or high water. I'm determined.

come home to roost -- (See chickens come home to roost)

C28. come into -- come on Internet Link come into

come into -- inherit, receive as a gift
When her father died, she came into a lot of money.

come into play -- affect, influence, be a factor
In sales, all of your skills come into play. You use them all.

come into your own -- be your natural best, find your voice, realize your potential
After five years in medicine, he came into his own. He became an excellent doctor.

come naturally -- able to learn easily, have natural ability
Playing the piano seemed to come naturally to Susan.

come of -- happen, result, develop
Peter liked Mia, but nothing ever came of it - no romance.

come of age -- become old enough to vote or go to the bar or fight in a war
On my 18th birthday, Dad said, "Now that you've come of age, here's a set of keys to the car."

come off -- happen as planned, succeed
The band wanted to produce a CD, but it didn't come off.

come off it -- I do not believe it, you're kidding
You had a date with Cybill Shepherd? Come off it!

come on -- cheer, encourage
Come on, Mat, you can do it! You can ride that bull!

come on -- do what we ask
Come on, tell us a story. Please?

C29. come-on -- come to a head Internet Link come-on

come-on -- invitation to romance, give her the eye
She's giving Rex the come-on, smiling at him and stuff.

come on strong -- do it with more energy, do it with enthusiasm
If you come on too strong, the customer will not buy from you.

come onside -- come on our team, be on our side, buy into
We want to persuade Vi to come onside. We want her to join us.

come onto -- talk to in a sexual way, make advances
In the car he started coming onto her. He said he wanted her.

come out in the wash -- become clear later, when the dust settles
We will soon know who did it. It will all come out in the wash.

come out with -- say, tell, blurt out
Then she comes out with a dirty joke and nobody laughed.

come through -- complete the task, do what is expected
We're hoping that Ron will come through with high grades.

come to -- regain your senses or consciousness
A few minutes after the accident, he came to. He opened his eyes.

come to -- involves, includes
When it comes to dessert, I like raisin pie.

come to a head -- come to a climax, result in a fight
Things will come to a head when the family discusses the will.

C30. come to fruition -- come up Internet Link come to fruition

come to fruition -- become reality, be completed as planned, see it through
Through your donations, your hard work, and your perseverance you have seen your plans for this church come to fruition.

come to grips with -- accept the truth, face facts
I am finally coming to grips with my divorce. I'm accepting it.

come to terms -- agree, sign an agreement, settle it
We hope they can come to terms before the court date.

come to terms with -- accept that it is true, face facts
She helped the boy come to terms with the death of his father.

come to the point -- say what is important, get to the point
When you make a speech, come to the point quickly.

come to think of it -- now that I remember it, a thought has just come
Come to think of it, I was the one who suggested marriage.

come true -- become real, happen, come to fruition
You must believe in your dream to make it come true.

come undone -- lose self-control, disorganized, at loose ends, fall to pieces
When she's near me, I come undone. I can't think or talk!

come unglued -- lose control, fall apart
If Tina doesn't stop worrying, she'll come unglued.

come up -- happen, occur, crop up
In this job we never know what will come up. One customer wanted to buy an ostrich.

C31. come up with -- conk out Internet link come up with

come up with -- think of, compose
Can you come up with the answer to my question?

comeback kid -- an older person who tries to regain his/her former level of success
He's the comeback kid. At 60, he thinks he can skate and play the way he used to.

comeuppance -- correction, what you deserve, just desert, get yours
If you've been cruel to people, you'll get your comeuppance.

coming out of our ears -- having too many, having too much
Everybody brought salad. We had salad coming out of our ears!

coming out of your yin yang -- having far too many, having far too much, tons
If we learn all the idioms in this book, we'll have idioms coming out of our yin yang!

coming up roses -- doing very well, succeeding,
Since I met Ty, life is wonderful. Everything's coming up roses!

common sense -- the ability to make logical decisions; horse sense
It is because she has common sense that we ask her opinion.

compare notes -- compare what we saw and heard
We haven't had a chance to compare notes on Pat's wedding.

comuppins -- (See comeuppance)

conk out -- quit, not work any more, sleep, give out
The TV conked out just after the movie started.

C32. consarned -- cool under pressure Internet Link consarned

consarned -- darn, blasted, dingbusted, friggin
The consarned battery is dead. Rats!

contract out on -- (See a contract out on)

cook -- play good jazz, play music with skill and inspiration
The Boss Brass was cookin' last night. What a great band!

cook your goose -- finish you, ruin you, goose is cooked
If you borrow too much money, you'll cook your goose.

cool -- fine, sophisticated, hip, groovy, neat, together, way cool, with it
"Do you know any cool guys?" "Yes. There's one in my class. Would you like to meet him?"

cool beans -- nice, great, wonderful, awesome, cool
"Hey Dad, I got an A on my math test!" "Cool beans, Nicky! I knew you could do it!"

cool cat -- (See show-off)

cool it -- stop it, be good, knock it off
The students cool it when the principal walks in.

cool off -- control your emotions, chill out, calm down
I better cool off before I talk to the kids. I'm still angry.

cool under pressure -- calm during a crisis, able to perform well when you must do it
Jo was very cool under pressure. When the judge asked questions, she answered clearly and calmly.

C33. cool your heels -- corner you Internet Link cool your heels

cool your heels -- wait for a judgement, serve a detention
Chad is cooling his heels in the Remand Centre - the city jail.

cooler heads prevailed -- sensible people spoke, violence was avoided
There was nearly a riot, but cooler heads prevailed.

coon's age -- (See in a coon's age)

cop -- policeman, fuzz, pig
I know this cop on the Calgary Police Force - he's a nice guy.

cop out -- an excuse, not trying, not doing your share
Instead of speaking, he showed a video. What a cop out!

copacetic -- agreeable, fine, go along with, okay, OK
Don is copacetic. He agrees with our plans.

copper -- (See cop)

corked -- intoxicated, drunk, plastered, sloshed
Grant got corked last night and walked home. He couldn't drive.

corner the market -- become the main supplier, have a monopoly
Japanese automakers are trying to corner the luxury car market.

corner you -- insist that you listen, buttonhole you
If Helmer corners you, tell him you have to go to the bathroom.

C34.corny -- couldn't believe my ears Internet Link corny

corny -- obvious humor, unsophisticated humor
The farmer said his cows are moody today. Now that is corny!

cost a pretty penny -- cost a lot of money, had a high price
Elvis bought a new pink Cadillac. I bet that cost a pretty penny.

cost an arm and a leg -- cost a lot of money, is very expensive
That fur jacket must have cost her an arm and a leg.

cost you -- require much money or emotional stress or time or energy
Caring for a child will cost you - cost you a lot. But it's worth every minute, every tear.

cotton-picking -- thieving, doggone, flipping, ruddy
Get your cotton-pickin' fingers off that bike! Don't touch it!

cotton to that -- believe in that, do that, relate to that
City folks play cards on Sunday, but we don't cotton to that.

couch potato -- a person who watches a lot of TV
If I watch four hours of TV every day, am I a couch potato?

cough up -- pay your share, pay a debt, pay up
Come on, Tony. Cough up. You haven't paid anything.

could care less -- (See couldn't care less)

couldn't believe my ears -- (See can't believe my ears)

C35. couldn't care less -- cover your ass [B] Internet Link couldn't care less

couldn't care less -- could not care any less, do not care at all
"Brad is seeing Debbie." "I know. And I couldn't care less."

count on -- depend on, rely on
We can count on Tanya. She always comes to choir practice.

count your chickens before they hatch -- depend heavily on plans, spend money that you have not received
Politicians have learned not to "count their chickens" before the election.

course you can -- you can do it, believe it, of course you can
"I don't think I can learn this." "Course you can, son."

courseware -- computer program that teaches a course
We sell courseware to schools all over North America.

courtesy of -- from, given by, donated by
The doughnuts are courtesy of Harry's Bakery.

cover for me -- make an excuse for me, do my work
I may be late for work today. Will you cover for me?

cover up -- hide it, sweep under the carpet
He can't cover up his mistake because people know about it.

cover-up -- hiding something from the authorities or media
The reporter heard about the cover-up of police brutality.

cover your ass [B] -- protect yourself by having documents signed etc.
If you discipline or dismiss an employee, cover your ass.

C36. cow-pie -- crack the line-up Internet link cow-pie

cow-pie -- cow shit [B] cow dung
Watch where you step. There are cow-pies everywhere. Oops!

cowpoke -- a cowboy, a man who works on a ranch
Three cowpokes were herding some cattle down the road.

Cowtown -- Calgary, Alberta; a town where cows are sold
The Calgary Stampede is the pride of Cowtown. Y'all come!

crack a book -- study, read a textbook
Sean passed that exam without cracking a book.

crack a joke -- tell a joke, say a funny word or phrase
Please be serious. Don't crack jokes or laugh at us.

crack down on -- stop, not permit, not allow
The police began to crack down on speeders in the school zones.

crack me up -- make me laugh hard, split a gut
Robin Williams cracks me up when he tells a story.

crack of dawn -- (See at the crack of dawn)

crack shot/salesman etc. -- a person who is highly skilled at shooting etc.
Marvin has developed into a crack salesman. He's excellent.

crack the line-up -- earn a place on a team, make the team
He's a good basketball player, but can he crack the line-up?

C37. crack this case -- crank out Internet Link crack this case

crack this case -- solve a crime, discover who is guilty
David will crack this case; he's a thorough investigator.

crack under the strain -- become irrational or hysterical due to strain, around the bend
Mother was a strong person. She never cracked under the strain of raising ten children.

cracked -- crazy, nuts, wacko
He must be cracked. He mailed a letter to himself.

crackers -- crazy, bonkers, nuts
Don't worry about me. I've been crackers all my life.

crackpot -- a person who is strange or weird, wacko
Some crackpot wrote a letter to him threatening his family.

crackup -- collision, crash
Drinking and driving causes a lot of crackups.

cramp your style -- cause problems for you, cause stress for you
If we can't buy a Corvette, will it cramp your style?

crank issue -- a topic that causes anger, can of worms
The Premier raised a crank issue and then went on holidays.

crank it up -- turn up the volume, louder please
Hey, Karen, crank up the radio. That's a great song.

crank out -- make, write, manufacture
Can you crank out a few jokes for our school newspaper?

C38. crap -- crazy like a fox Internet Link crap

crap -- lies, bull, BS
He told us that history books contain a lot of crap - BS.

crappy -- poor quality, junky, shabby
What a crappy camera! Look at these terrible pictures!

crash -- go to bed, go to sleep
Sometimes Don crashes on our sofa and sleeps for hours.

crash -- fail to operate, not work, break down, kaput
If Netscape crashes, I'll have to use the phone instead of e-mail.

crash a party -- go to a party uninvited, horn in
Bo and his friends crashed our party. They came uninvited.

crash course -- (See a crash course)

crawl on my hands and knees over broken glass just to see her photo -- do anything to be closer to her, worship the ground she walks on
I'm so in love I'd crawl on my hands and knees over miles of broken glass to see her photo.

crawling with -- having many of them, oodles, scads
The hotel was crawling with police. I couldn't count them.

crazy about -- like a lot, mad about
Dad's crazy about sports. He really loves baseball.

crazy like a fox -- crafty while appearing foolish or dumb, play the fool
In the debate, he was crazy like a fox. He praised his opponent for being clever and ruthless.

C39. cream of the crop -- cross paths Internet Link cream of the crop

cream of the crop -- best of the group, the finest ones
Only the cream of the crop will be invited to the interviews.

cream you -- hit you, knock you down, knock you flat
If Jon discovers you lied to him, he'll cream you. He'll hit you.

creep -- strange person, pervert, weirdo
What a creep! He looks like a stray dog!

crock -- (See that's a crock)

crocodile tears -- false tears, phony sadness
Her crocodile tears don't fool me. She just wants sympathy.

crop up -- happen, occur, come up
I'm planning to go to Montreal unless something crops up - like an airline strike.

cross my heart and hope to die -- promise sincerely, honestly, under oath
I'll pay you back on Friday, cross my heart and hope to die.

cross over Jordan -- die, buy the farm, pass away
Before dad crossed over, he told us to care for our mother.

cross over to the other side -- die, kick the bucket, pass away
Some people cross over to the other side - and return!

cross paths -- meet, encounter
We'll cross paths again, I'm sure. Until then, good luck.

C40. cross someone -- crux of the matter Internet Link cross someone

cross someone -- go against someone, insult someone
People are afraid to cross Phil because he has a violent temper.

cross that bridge when I come to it -- make that decision when it is necessary, do not jump the gun
If interest rates begin to drop, I can buy bonds, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

cross your fingers -- (See keep your fingers crossed)

cruise -- drive the streets looking for fun and friends, bomb around
It was Sunday afternoon and we were cruising the streets looking for chicks.

cruise -- drive around in a car, bomb around
On summer nights we cruise the streets looking for fun.

cruising for a bruising -- inviting a fight, asking for it
The new kid was cruisin' for a bruisin' - insulting everybody.

crummy -- poor quality, lousy, shabby
We canceled the picnic because of the crummy weather.

crunch -- (See the crunch)

crush on -- (See a crush on)

crux of the matter -- (See the crux of the matter)

C41. cry her heart out -- cup runneth over Internet link cry her heart out

cry her heart out -- cry a lot, sob, cry your eyes out
Poor girl! She's crying her heart out because he hasn't called her.

cry in your beer -- be sad as you drink beer, regret as you drink beer, cry the blues
Go to college. Get your diploma. Or someday you'll be crying in your beer.

cry me a river -- you can cry a lot but you will not get my sympathy, crocodile tears
When he complained about how much he had to pay his chauffeur, I said, "Cry me a river, guy."

cry over spilt milk -- cry about small accidents, cry instead of doing
Children drop things and break them. Don't cry over spilt milk.

cry the blues -- complain because your friend or lover has gone
Lan is crying the blues because Bing left her for another woman.

cry your eyes out -- cry a lot, cry hard, cry her heart out
The little boy was lost and scared, and crying his eyes out.

crying shame -- (See a crying shame)

crystal clear -- very clear, well understood, plain as day
After Mr. Tse explained the concept to me, he asked, "Is that clear?" "Crystal clear," I replied.

cup of tea -- favorite activity, choice of entertainment
A holiday in the Yukon is not her cup of tea.

cup runneth over -- feeling too full of love or joy or happiness
Whenever I listen to Mother Teresa, my cup runneth over.

C42. curiosity killed the cat -- cut above Internet Link curiosity killed the cat

curiosity killed the cat -- a very curious person may find trouble or danger
Don't ask so many questions. Remember, curiosity killed the cat.

curl up with a good book -- sit down in a comfortable place and read a book
On a cold and rainy day she likes to curl up with a good book.

curl your hair -- shock you, disgust you
The man described the accident. It was enough to curl your hair!

curtains -- the end, the death, the last of
If we clear-cut Canada's forests, it's curtains for the lumber industry.

cushy -- soft, luxurious, comfortable
They had a cushy life in their beautiful home beside the ocean.

cuss -- curse, say bad words, the air was blue
The little boy had learned to cuss. He said damn and hell a lot.

cut -- defined, clearly visible
Neil's muscles are well cut. They ripple when he moves.

cut a fine figure -- look very good in your clothes, look sharp
When Dee was in her twenties she cut a fine figure in this fur jacket.

cut a wide swath -- do many things - party, play sports, live and love
Tim cut a wide swath in his youth. He lived a full and active life.

cut above -- (See a cut above)

C43. cut and dried -- cut me to the quick Internet Link cut and dried

cut and dried -- simple, not complex, open and shut
For me, the choice was cut and dried. I chose the Peugeot.

cut corners -- use less material, use less than required
If we cut corners, we'll produce a low-quality product.

cut from the same cloth -- from the same family, very similar
Ty and Ed are cut from the same cloth - both are serious and quiet.

cut him off [B] -- not have sex with him, not make love to him
If he doesn't buy me a car, I'll cut him off - no nookie!

cut it -- do the job, satisfy, work
Red and brown just don't cut it. They look ugly together.

cut it a little fine -- leave very little time, have just enough money
After paying the rent we had only $60. This is cutting it a little fine.

cut it out -- stop it, do not do that, knock it off
When the kids began throwing dirt, we told them to cut it out.

cut losses -- quit the project and accept the financial losses
If the stock price goes down, sell them and cut your losses.

cut me some slack -- give me more time, give me more freedom
You may be asking too much of your son. Cut him some slack.

cut me to the quick -- hurt me, cause me to feel sad
I was hurt when she called me a cow. She cut me to the quick.

C44. cut my teeth on -- cut the mustard Internet Link cut my teeth on

cut my teeth on -- learned as a young person, learned as I grew up
Yes, I can tie a bow knot. I cut my teeth on string and ropes.

cut off -- not allowed to do it any more, stopped from doing
We have to cut off beer sales at 12 midnight. No more sales.

cut off -- drive in front of, swerve into your lane
That jerk cut me off! He swerved into my lane!

cut off -- interrupt, prevent from talking, shut down
The chairman cut me off in the middle of my question. "You're out of order," he said.

cut off your nose to spite your face -- make your problem worse, hurt yourself because you dislike yourself
If you abuse drugs to forget a problem, you are cutting off your nose to spite your face.

cut out for -- have natural ability for, be suited to
I guess I'm just not cut out for bull riding. I'm not good at it.

cut rate -- second class, sold for less than full price
We bought some cut-rate lumber and built a shelter for the boat.

cut the cheese [B] -- let off gas, fart, pass wind
Then somebody cut the cheese, and everybody laughed.

cut the crap [B] -- stop telling lies, stop doing stupid things, no more bull
Will somebody tell him to cut the crap and give us the facts!

cut the mustard -- do the job properly, cut it
If I'm too old to cut the mustard, maybe I should retire, eh.

C45. cut to the chase -- cutting edge Internet link cut to the chase

cut to the chase -- tell the exciting part, get to the point
George, please, cut to the chase. We're tired of the story already.

cut-up -- (See a cut-up)

cut you down to size -- make you feel smaller; not as important
The foreman cut him down to size by calling him a laborer.

cut you to ribbons -- defeat you in an argument, embarrass you in a contest
That professor will cut you to ribbons if you question his facts.

cut your own throat -- hurt yourself, be your own worst enemy
By overspending, you will cut your own throat.

cute as a bug's ear -- petite and pretty, adorable
Have you seen her little sister? She's cute as a bug's ear.

cutting edge -- the latest technology, state of the art
This picture is the cutting edge - the best in the TV industry.

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