Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Milking The Cow

Usually a reference to treating a person or entity as a cash cow. This implies taking advantage of a situation and has a strongly negative tone (except to those happily taking the money). Ex.: "Defense contractors get hugely inflated contracts from the government. They're really milking the cow - and making the rest of us pay for it." (An example of the issue)

A Cash Cow

 A "cash cow" is a source of steady income. Ex.: "Before the housing bubble collapsed, mortgages were a cash cow for banks and investors alike." That is, until the recent economic troubles, mortgages were a steady source of profit (even though that was a "bubble" effect).

Get Over It

To "get over" something is to move beyond it; to leave it in the past. Conversely, to not "get over" something is to dwell on it and keep it alive as an issue. Ex.: "Your party lost in the last election. Get over it!" This is insensitive, but means, accept defeat with grace; do not be a sore loser.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Seeing Eye To Eye

To see "eye to eye" with another person is to be in complete, total agreement about a particular subject. Ex.: "Lisa's father and mother both saw eye to eye about her new boyfriend: they both thought he was no good for her at all." (Here, the idiom is in the past tense. Seeing -> Saw)

Cool as a Cucumber

A cucumber is a gourd that is usually stored cold in a fridge (in the West, anyway). Thus, to be "cool as a cucumber" is to be very cool; that is, level-headed, even-tempered, in strong command of oneself. Ex.: "You've already done one TV interview. You'll be cool as a cucumber in the next one!"

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Flipped On Its Head

Something "flipped on its head" has been figuratively turned upside down. It has been altered so profoundly that up is down, left is right, and a person's expectations have been completely overwhelmed. Ex.: "Social media has turned the communications business on its head." Social media has revolutionized the communications business.

In The Heart Of

The "heart" of something is its center, its core, its most vital area. This can be figurative, or in relation to territory, it can be geographic in nature. Ex.: "Protesters set fire to at least three police cars in different parts of the city, including one in the heart of the financial district." (Subject: G20 riots) This means, in the center/ the core of the financial district (of Toronto, in this case).

Saturday, June 26, 2010

I Feel Like A Million Bucks

A buck is an informal American word for "a dollar." To say "I feel like" a million dollars means, the person feels worth a million dollars. The speaker is claiming to feel very good, in robust health and with a positive outlook. Ex.: "I made the winning goal in our hockey game. I feel like a million bucks!"

On The Line

When your job is "on the line," it is in jeopardy. The job could be saved, but is in danger of being lost. That is, you might be fired if you do not do your job properly. Ex.: "Matt's job was on the line due to his anti-social behavior. If he knew how to work in a team, his job would be secure."

Other things can be on the line, too: your marriage, your future, even your life. Anything "on the line" is in a crisis and could go in either direction (that is, up or down). 

The English Idioms Blog is Born!!

This post is being auto-published to the English Idioms page on Facebook. The blog URL is . Following the RSS feed of this blog means getting all the "official" idioms postings in one place, but remember that English Idioms highly values all its contributors! Thank you, one and all.

Welcome to the English Idioms Blog!

English Idioms is a worldwide phenomenon centered on Facebook. The brainchild of a Vietnamese English learner, I, Jeremiah Bourque, English tutor and writer (among other things), was asked to co-administer the page. English Idioms now has over 20,000 fans (well, people who "like" the page, since Facebook changed it from fans to what... likers? Is that a word?) and continues to grow daily.

The posts on this blog will be automatically redirected to English Idioms. Most posts will, obviously, have something to do with idioms! While the Facebook page allows anyone to post, this will be my "admin feed" as Jeremiah Bourque, so feel free to subscribe to the RSS to get "just" the official stuff. I must add that the contributors on English Idioms add a lot of flavor and character and their contributions are highly valued! 

Welcome one and all.