Idioms part 2: Are you pulling my leg ?

2nd June 2020

This blog is especially for my internet friend Silk Chatters, as she mentioned this idioms in a note. She has lots of interesting blogs, so have a gander at her page. Here’s a link to one of her blogs:

https://silkcordsblog.wordpress.com/2020/05/31/my-disgust-with-the-media-continues-to-skyrocket/

Idioms

Following on from yesterday’s blog, I’ve included some more everyday idioms, this time related to work. See how many you’ve come across. To kick off, many of my students are accountants. For that occupation we have:

Woman in Gray and White Pinstripe Dress Shirt Using Black Tablet Computer

number-cruncher = a slang term for an accountant

cooking the books = writing false information in accountants – a serious crime

What kind of work is accounting ?

Young bored office worker sitting at desk and working, she is ...

Exciting and adventurous … not really. My students complain that their work is uninteresting, boring and tedious. Idiomatically, we could say:

It’s like watching paint dry

same thing, day in, day out

same old, same old

How do you cope with pressure or cope with stress ?

How Accountants Can Combat Work-Related Stress | AccountingWEB

I will getaway from everything = Do something completely different

I take a breather. I take five (a short break from work)

I like to let off steam by

Ask each other: what do you do to let off steam ?

Massena man wins St. Lawrence University's first Amateur Table ...
Play table tennis
17 Complete – Sing Karaoke in Japan! | GATE20.com
Sing Karaoke
Bus travel to shopping spots| FlixBus → The new way to travel
Go Shopping

7 Best Apps To Watch Movies Together Online With Your Friends
Watch movies

Fun Holiday – Read a Book Day
Read a book … or many books
Good Times Bad Times - LED ZEPPELIN / Cover by Yoyoka , 8 year old ...
Yoyoka, aged 8, playing drums

Idioms

Keep an eye on (watch something carefully)

under the table = to give money to someone unofficially

kick the bucket = to die (informal) Did you hear ? Old Tom kicked the bucket.

A spanner in the works = a serious problem

In the right ball park (US) = not correct but close

On the right track (UK) not correct but close

Now, practice:

That’s not right but you’re …

I had to pay … to get the paperwork stamped

Can you … on the food while I answer the phone ?

Oh, poor Mr Jones, he … last week

That’s a real problem. It puts a …

Journey in Life: "Throw a spanner in the works" nghĩa là gì?
Throwing a spanner in the works. The young lady is holding a spanner

Idioms / expressions (money)

money doesn’t grow on trees

time is money

on the money = exactly right 

costs an arm and a leg = very expensive.

Don’t stop working ! _________________________________

I can’t stay in a 5 star hotel, it ____________________

Be careful with your clothes, I can’t keep buying new ones _______________________ Yes, she’s always right, always _________________

New idioms / collocations

to get hold of someone = to speak to or meet someone

Hell breaks loose = will be a lot of trouble

to be into something = to like something very much

more or less = not 100% but almost.

I beg to differ = polite way to disagree

In the next blog, we’ll look at how these idioms can be used in everyday conversations

Remember: don’t get caught cooking the books – or you’ll get a massive fine.

Consequences of the Enron Scandal

Adult Class, Level 3: Can’t buy me love.

14th November 2019 AEF 2A pp. 14 – 15.

Tonight, attitudes to money: What does the first singer think about money ? What is important in his life ?

Image result for beatles can't buy me love

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKfALmKL0VU

Now, compare with this attitude:

Image result for flying lizards money

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-P2qL3qkzk

The first song is romantic; the man doesn’t care about money, he wants love. However, the lady sings, “I want your money !” This is called being materialistic, wanting expensive things and money.

Vocabulary – p. 154. Verbs pertaining to money.

Activity. You inherit a small fortune and want to splurge out (spend a lot of money). Working in small groups, tell what how you would spend your luxury day.

Plan a luxury day

To develop narrative writing and speaking skills, use words or phrases such as:

Firstly // Initially // I would start // It would kick off with …

secondly, thirdly etc

after that // afterwards // following that // and then …

for a change // as a contrast// for a break // to take a break from all the …

lastly // I’d end up // I’d round the day off with

You could:

luxury breakfast // luxury spa treatment // horse-carriage ride

shopping // luxury yacht

See Barcelona play // Attend a play at a London theatre

OR add your own ideas

Where would you go ? What would you do ? What would you buy ?

Activity: Devil’s advocate.

This is to develop argument skills, how to politely disagree with someone.

Example: one student wants to buy a beautiful, luxurious Rolex watch. It really is an outstanding timepiece:

Image result for Rolex

Without doubt, this is a luxury item. The pros …

It is gorgeous and so elegant. I will feel so special wearing it. People will admire and look up to me. They will think I am wealthy and have a great career. I will attract many cute women (or handsome men, whatever !). I may feel superior to other people who only have cheap watches or nasty fake knock-offs – like Thay Paul 🙂

Now play Devil’s advocate. Say what are the cons of owning such an item. Firstly, agree with the first student – it is without question a luxury item. Having said that

It will attract attention … but maybe from thieves or pickpockets. It is a lot of money, maybe an obscene amount of money when so many people are poor. Can you justify living in a Socialist country and owning such a materialistic item ? Will it make you arrogant ? Will you think you are better than other people BECAUSE of a thing ? Finally … what does it DO ? Fundamentally, it tells the time. My fake Rolex will tell the same time … but it cost $20 NOT $ 5 000 !

Now students’ turn. Similar concept but this time, the latest iPhone:

Image result for iphone 11

The iphone 11 (woooooowwwwwwww !)

One student wants to buy it, the other must give reasons why it is not such a good idea.

Useful phrases: a waste of money / not necessary // a fashion accessory // you can’t afford it //

Image result for neither a borrower nor a lender be

Role play game:

Three students will act out working in a department store, a shop with a sale on, and a street market. Other students have a set budget (say £100) and have to buy three items.

They can practice with the following language:

How much is this, please ? // Could you bring the price down for cash ? // Do you take plastic (credit cards) ? // If I smile, can you take off 10% ?

Wow, that’s a bargain ! // Sorry, that’s too much // Is that your best price ?

I’ll take it ! // Wrap it up ! // Let me think about it and come back // Sorry, that’s too much.

Image result for van heusen shirts store
A department store selling expensive designer shirts
Image result for clothes on sale
Clothes on sale – ‘to clear’
Image result for london street market
London street market.

NOW – to make it more animated – the people working in the shops will no doubt be using different varieties of English. Let’s see if the students can alter their voices to portray an upper-class, well-spoken salesperson; a basic shop worker and a working-class street trader. I (old ham actor that I am) shall demonstrate. Yes, it’s not a conventional lesson but maybe the students will appreciate something different (even if the management don’t).

To end, I really want the students to gain confidence in speaking, so a lot of talking in small groups. I have various talking points they can discuss, and once they feel relaxed, we can play:

Just a Minute: students are given an open subject and must speak for one minute without deviation, hesitation or repetition. Other students time them and judge their performance.

Language review: students must give the correct word to a definition pertaining to tonight’s theme.

And then … take care, see you next week, later, dude !

Image result for lighting cigar with money