work up an appetite, eat like a horse, pick up the tab

a) I've really worked up an appetite this afternoon digging in the garden.

b) Children? Why don't you go outside to play and work up an appetite before dinner?

To 'work up an appetite' means to become hungry following physical exercise or exertion.


a) We always have to cook twice as much as usual when Steve comes to dinner. He eats like a horse.

b) My husband eats like a horse and always finishes before everyone else

To 'eat like a horse' means to eat a lot.


a) Our boss picked up the tab in the restaurant as a treat for all our hard work.

b) I was planning to pick up the tab until I realised how expensive the food was.

If you 'pick up the tab' it means you pay the bill.


1) When was the last time you worked up an appetite?
2) Can you remember an occasion when you or someone you know picked up the tab?
3) Can you think of someone you know who eats like a horse?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:55

word bank #98

It didn't really sink in that I'd passed the exam until I saw my name printed on the list of successful students.
sink in: "to fully comprehend something"


1. It's highly questionable whether he'll attend the meeting. Relations between the two countries are not good.

2. Would you mind filling in this questionnaire? It should only take a few minutes.

3. She's unquestionably the best manager I've ever worked for. She has a wonderful ability to motivate people.


I'd like to place an order for a delivery of stationery please.
"to place an order"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:53 | CAE

word bank #98

I know she's always arguing with you, but at least she stands up for what she believes in.
stand up for: "to defend a person or point of view"


1. Experts are beginning to question the effectiveness of the Government's anti-drugs campaign.

2. The treatment he received for the injury was totally ineffective and he had to spend several weeks off work.

3. The couple had an enormous argument which effectively brought their relationship to an end.


Apparently the police will be making a statement about the arrest later today.
"to make a statement"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:53 | FCE

The World of Music

A piece of music
Be into ('like particular music)
To sing at the top of one's voice
To have a sign song
To listen to soothing music
To express yourself
To put you in a good mood/a good frame of mind
To raise our spirits
To unwind
To de-stress

Useful quotes
"It was once said that..."
If you can walk you can dance. If you can talk you can sing.
(Proverb from Zimbabwe)

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.
(Red Auerbach)

Without music, life is a journey through a desert.
(Pat Conroy)

The history of a people is found in its song.
(George Jellinek)

Without music, life would be an error.
(Friedrich Nietzsche)
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:44

word bank #97

I'm fed up with this weather. It's been pouring down with rain all afternoon.
pour down: "to rain heavily"


1. He can never make up his mind about anything. He's so indecisive.

2. It's the President's decisiveness that I admire most. He's a great leader.

3. They won decisively, 5-0.


It is quite a revolutionary system of doing business that stands on its head all orthodox principles.
"to stand on its head"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:43 | CAE

word bank #97

He got in trouble for sending up his teacher. I must admit though, he made everyone laugh.
send up: "to imitate someone in a way that makes them look silly"


1. Sam sends his apologies. He can't come to the meeting as he has another engagement.

2. Tom was very apologetic about losing my watch. I had to forgive him in the end.

3. The boy spoke very apologetically and then left the room.


I'm really under pressure at work at the moment. We've had a big order come in and we're all having to work extra hard.
"to be under pressure"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:42 | FCE

hard up, from hand to mouth, made of money

a) If you're hard up why don't you get a part-time job during the school holidays?

b) My brother's really hard up at the moment and has asked me to lend him some money.

If you are 'hard up' you don't have much money.


a) If you don't mind living from hand to mouth there are some wonderful opportunities to do voluntary work abroad.

b) Apparently, Paul spent his teenage years homeless and living from hand to mouth in London.

If you live 'from hand to mouth' you live on very little money.


a) Footballers these days are made of money and act more like film stars than sportsmen.

b) Sorry, but I'm not made of money. There's no way I can afford a new car.

If you are 'made of money' you are rich.



1) If you were really hard up what luxury item would you most miss?
2) Has there ever been a period in your life when you've had to live hand to mouth?
3) Where do people who are made of money live in your nearest city?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:41

word bank #96

In a vote that took place in the early hours of the morning, the Party came out against raising taxes so close to a general election.
come out for/against: "to show that you do or do not support something"


1. The management at the company celebrated record exports for the first half of this year.

2. I'm not babysitting for them. Their children are badly behaved and totally unmanageable.

3. She was promoted to the position of managing director.


Having made his mark on the organisation and become highly respected, he decided to leave and start his own business.
"to make a mark"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:40 | CAE

word bank #96

He was kicked out of university for cheating in his exams.
kick out of: "to force someone to leave somewhere"


1. I had to give a presentation for my interview. It was really stressful.

2. He's always well-dressed and very presentable, isn't he?

3. I'd love to be a presenter on one of the news programmes.


I'm sorry, I don't really follow your argument. Could you explain that point
again?
"to follow an argument"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:39 | FCE

jump to conclusions, turn a blind eye, take you for a ride

a) The trouble is, once you have a bad reputation, people always jump to conclusions about you for ever after.

b) Just because all the newspapers are writing bad things about her I don't think we should jump to conclusions yet until the case goes to court.

If you 'jump to conclusions' you take a view on something before you have all the facts.


a) Everybody knew he was stealing from the company but for some reason the management turned a blind eye to it.

b) Some people are accusing politicians of turning a blind eye to irregularities in the financial sector.

If you 'turn a blind eye' to something wrong that is happening you ignore it.


a) You need to be careful as a tourist shopping in the market. There's always someone who will take you for a ride if you're not careful.

b) He's a well known swindler who has taken lots of people for a ride over the years.

If someone 'takes you for a ride' they cheat you.



1) Do you know people who tend to jump to conclusions when they hear of rumours about people or events?
2) If you knew a colleague was stealing from the company would you turn a blind eye or inform someone?
3) Is it easy to take you for a ride or would someone find it difficult to swindle you?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:38

word bank #95

This is my favourite photo of our daughter. I'm going to have it blown up and framed.
blow up: "to enlarge a photograph"


1. The teacher told the children off for being inattentive and not listening to what he was saying.

2. Can I have your attention please? The performance is about to begin.

3. Mark's got a job as a petrol attendant in the local petrol station.


It rained most of the day but there was a short break in the weather around lunch time.
"a short break in the weather"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:36 | CAE

word bank #95

They are identical twins. It's impossible to tell them apart.
tell apart: "to see the difference between two things"


1. We were burgled last week. We had a lot of photographic equipment stolen.

2. I'm doing a photography course at the weekend. It's really interesting.

3. What time is the photographer turning up? He said he'd be here by now.


It was his first class and he decided to stamp his authority from the start by sending the boy out.
"to stamp your authority"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-21 23:35 | FCE

the wrong end of the stick, a bit rusty, keep you in the dark

a) I thought the trainer was encouraging us to work harder but I got the wrong end of the stick.


b) Anyway, I read the letter again, just to make sure I hadn't got the wrong end of the stick.

If you get 'the wrong end of the stick' you misunderstand something.


a) I haven't had the chance to practise my German for years so it will probably be a bit rusty.

b) If you haven't driven for a while you're bound to be a bit rusty so I'd be careful if I were you.

If you are 'a bit rusty' at something you are out of practice at it.


a) Sorry, but I've got no idea what the manager wants. As usual, he's kept me in the dark.

b) Why they kept John in the dark all that time I'll never know. When he learnt he was losing his job he was completely unprepared.

If someone 'keeps you in the dark' they keep information from you.


1) Can you remember the last time you got the wrong end of the stick about something?
2) Is there a particular skill you've learnt in the past that is now a bit rusty?
3) Have people ever kept you in the dark about something?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:26

word bank #94

I knock off work at 5.30. Shall I meet you in town at 6.00?
knock off: "to finish work at the end of the day"


1. The thing I value most in a person is sincerity.

2. I don't know why she believes everything he tells her. He's so insincere.

3. You're the best team of people I've ever worked with, and I mean that most sincerely.


The police set a trap for the burglars and caught them just as they were entering the house.
"to set a trap"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:25 | CAE

word bank #94

I ran into an old school friend in town today. She was getting off the bus just as I was getting on.
run into: "to meet someone by chance"


1. He's a very inventive person. He always has lots of original ideas.

2. What do you think was the greatest invention of the 20th Century?

3. He was an amateur inventor and spent all his time working on his latest project.


Who's going to break the news to the boss that we've lost the file?
"to break the news"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:24 | FCE

a splitting headache, on top of the world, back on your feet

a) I've got a splitting headache. Have you got any pain-killers?

b) I'd watch what you're drinking if I were you or you'll wake up with a splitting headache.

If you have 'a splitting headache' you have a very painful headache.


a) Jenny said she felt on top of the world after her massage at the beauty salon last week.

b) You must be feeling on top of the world after completing your first marathon.

If you feel 'on top of the world' you feel very healthy.


a) Anyway, it's great to hear you're back on your feet again after the operation.

b) When I'm back on my feet again I'll give you a call and we can go out for a meal.

If you are 'back on your feet' you have recovered from an illness or injury.



1) Do you often suffer from migraines or a splitting headache?
2) When was the last time you felt on top of the world and what had happened?
3) If you catch a heavy cold how long does it usually take you to get back on your feet again?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:17

word bank #93

I've drawn up a list for things we need for the holiday. Could you check to see I haven't forgotten anything?
draw up: "to prepare a list or plan"


1. The number of immigrants entering the country has remained steady over the past five years.

2. Statistics show that migration patterns during this period were mainly from the countryside towards the cities.

3. After you leave the plane you will pass through immigration, where you will need to produce your passport.


It was his comment that most unemployed people don't want to work that I took issue with. It's just not true.
"to take issue"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:15 | CAE

word bank #93

Several proposals for how the money should be spent have been put forward but no decision has yet been made.
put forward: "to offer an idea or proposal"


1. You can't wear jeans to a wedding. They're totally unsuitable for the occasion.

2. The interview team are discussing the person's suitability for the job.

3. Do you think I'm dressed suitably for a visit to the theatre?


It makes me sick the way he's always allowed to leave early. What's so special about him?
"to make someone sick"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:14 | FCE

on the same wavelength, get on like a house on fire, at someone's beck and call

a) Teenagers and parents aren't always on the same wavelength, which is probably why communication is sometimes difficult.

b) Try these quiz questions to see if you're on the same wavelength as your husband.

If you are 'on the same wavelength' as someone else you get on well together and have a similar, general outlook to important issues.


a) We get on like a house on fire and have such fun when we meet up.

b) The children are getting on like a house on fire. I haven't heard any arguments all morning.

If you 'get on like a house on fire' with someone you really enjoy each other's company.


a) He always expects me to be at his beck and call but I've got work of my own to do.

b) He doesn't need a wife. He just wants somebody to be at his beck and call all day.

If you are 'at someone's beck and call' you have to do things for them whenever they need your help.


1) Which of your friends would you describe as being on the same wavelength as you?
2) What qualities would a person need to have for you both to get on like a house on fire?
3) Do you know someone who always expects other people to be at their beck and call?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:10

word bank #92

I'm sure I'm coming down with a bug. I feel really awful.
come down with: "to begin to catch an illness"


1. I'm not very good at doing calculations in my head. Maths never was my strong point.

2. The figures don't add up. You must have miscalculated.

3. Can I borrow your calculator for a minute? I need to work out my taxes.


I'm not saying he's a liar, but he does tend to stretch the truth a little when he's talking about his achievements.
"to stretch the truth"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:08 | CAE

word bank #92

Sorry I'm late. I was held up in a traffic jam on the motorway.
hold up: "to delay or make late"


1. You should always wear protective clothing when handling this chemical.

2. Wearing a high-factor sun lotion is the best protection against getting sunburnt.

3. The goalkeeper was totally unprotected and didn't have a chance.


I'm going to close my bank account. I'm really annoyed with the poor service I've received lately.
"to close an account"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:07 | FCE

wheeling and dealing, pave the way, the green light

a) It's a great film and looks at all the wheeling and dealing that goes on in the financial centres of the world.

b) Mehdi always has his mobile phone to his ear wheeling and dealing and acting the successful businessman perfectly.

'Wheeling and dealing' refers to the complicated, sometimes deceitful transactions that take place in the world of business.


a) The agreement paves the way for one of the largest mergers to have taken place this year.

b) Experts predict that the news regulations will pave the way for a huge increase in small businesses.

If something 'paves the way' for something it makes it possible to happen.


a) The Government has given the green light to businesses wishing to apply for licenses to operate in the sector.

b) The company has given its legal team the green light to take action against their competitors.

If you are given 'the green light' to do something you are given permission to do it.


1) How do you feel when you see people on trains loudly wheeling and dealing on their mobile phone?
2) Are you aware of government legislation in your country or region that has paved the way for new business practices?
3) If your boss gave you the green light to organise a social trip for your colleagues where would you take them?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:06

word bank #91

After a busy say in the office I like to wind down with a good book in front of the fire.
wind down: "to relax after doing something strenuous or difficult"


1. You need to be quite persuasive if you want to work in sales.

2. Despite all his powers of persuasion, I refused to take him up on his offer.

3. They bought the product mainly due to the persuasiveness of the advert.


To put it simply, the company is facing serious economic problems.
"to put something simply"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:04 | CAE

word bank #91

I tried to get a room in the nearest hotel but it was all booked up.
book up: "to have no vacancies"


1. The police know the location of the stolen vehicle and will be taking the owner there later.

2. They decided not to move the business as relocation costs were far too high.

3. The restaurant is located just outside of town.


Could you give me a hand with this heavy box please? I can't move it on my own.
"to give someone a hand"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:03 | FCE

fill your boots, burnt to a crisp, makes your mouth water

a) Come on everyone, fill your boots. I don't want to see any food on the table when you've finished.

b) It was a self-service, buffet meal and everyone was filling their boots with food.

If you 'fill your boots' you eat as much as you can.


a) I forgot the meat was in the oven and it got burnt to a crisp.

b) If you don't get home soon your dinner will be burnt to a crisp.

If food gets 'burnt to a crisp' it is very burnt.


a) The restaurant was fantastic and the food really made your mouth water.

b) Can you smell next door's barbeque? It's making my mouth water.

If an item of food 'makes your mouth water' it looks or smells delicious and makes you want to eat it.


1) Do you fill your boots or prefer to eat small portions?
2) Has anyone cooked a meal for you that got burnt to a crisp?
3) What kind of food is guaranteed to make your mouth water?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-17 22:02

word bank #90

Don't worry, I won't tell anyone your secret. You can count on me.
count on: "to rely on"


1. The government are freeing several political prisoners as part of the peace process.

2. He is leaving the company to become a full-time politician.

3. You have to be very careful what you say these days. Some words are politically incorrect.


Could you settle an argument between Bob and I? Who won the World Cup in 1978?
"to settle an argument"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-16 21:59 | FCE

word bank #90

Have you heard? They're going to tear down those old buildings in the city centre to make way for a car park.
tear down: "to demolish"


1. The footballer received a two week suspension for his behaviour in the last game.

2. Come on! Don't keep me in suspense. Did he ask you to marry him?

3. The creature has been kept in suspended animation by scientists.


Don't breathe a word of this to anyone, it's confidential, but I think John is going to resign from his job.
"to breathe a word"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-16 21:59 | CAE

fighting fit, get back into shape, run down

a) Here's your chance to get fighting fit . Join our 6 week fitness programme.

b) I wouldn't say I'm fighting fit but I like to live a reasonably healthy lifestyle.

If someone is 'fighting fit' they are in good health.


a) How long did it take you to get back into shape after your accident?

b) If you want to get your body back into shape you're going to have to take up exercise.

If you 'get back into shape' you recover your level of fitness after an illness or accident.


a) I'm feeling a bit run down. I need to start eating healthier food.

b) The doctor says I'm coming down with a virus, which is why I'm feeling run down.

If you feel 'run down' you feel unwell or weak.


1) What kind of sport would you recommend to keep fighting fit?
2) Can you think of a famous sportsperson who has had to get back into shape recently?
3) Are you the type that takes a day off work or your studies if you feel a bit run down or do you try to struggle on?
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-16 01:53

word bank #89

I'm just going to slip into something more comfortable for dinner.
slip into: "to quickly put on an item of clothing"


1. The spectators were treated to a wonderful game of football.

2. It was a spectacular performance and the audience gave the players a standing ovation.

3. The gymnast failed spectacularly to regain his title by falling off the high bars.


It was this painting that bridged the gap between his early abstract work and his later move towards realism.
"to bridge a gap"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-13 01:49 | CAE

word bank #89

We had an argument and he stormed off in a temper.
storm off: "to walk off angrily"


1. Did you see anything suspicious happen while you were following him?

2. The suspect is now entering the building.

3. She's been acting very suspiciously since she walked into the shop.


His father runs a business selling second-hand computers.
"to run a business"
[PR]
# by scummy | 2008-07-13 01:47 | FCE

memo


by scummy

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