“I’m running late” is the idiomatic expression used when a person wants to be excused for the likelihood that he will be late.
It may also be used to cut off a conversation, for example, the listener wants to stop talking and interrupts the speaker with, “I have to go, I’m running late”. It would be bad taste for the speaker to continue talking and he would be expected to end the conversation.
How do you use the term “running late”?
For example, a person says to a waiter: “Could you bring the bill with coffee? We’re running late”. This means that if they do not hurry, they risk being late for their next appointment.
Can you think of situations when it’s necessary to tell someone that you’re “running late”?
On the other hand, the expression “Running out of time” is used when someone tells you that they have run out of time; they mean that they have used up most of their allocated time, that they have no time left, for a particular activity such as a test.
How do we use the term?
“My biggest worry is that I’m running out of time and energy. Thirty years ago, I thought 10 years was a really long time.”
“We are running out of time. Can we take a decision before we wrap up the meeting?
Can you think of situations when it’s necessary to tell someone that you are running out of time?
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I received this pic in my mailbox and instantly got inspired.
Here is my take on the word OWL.
What does the idiom “as wise as an owl” mean?
It means someone who is really smart. In lots of stories and myths, owls were associated with wisdom.
Some synonyms are: wise; worldy- wise; experienced or intelligent.
Owls have a reputation for being wise because their large eyes and stern, professional glare make them look educated. Often, their eyes are “framed” as if they’re wearing eyeglasses, which many associate with studious work. And their large, feathery heads seem to have plenty of room for big brains.
Some famous quotes referring to wise owls:
“Can grave and formal pass for wise when men the solemn Owl despise?” => Benjamin Franklin.
“A wise old owl sat on an oak; the more he saw, the less he spoke; the less he spoke, the more he heard. Why aren’t we like that wise old bird?” – Edward H. Richards.
Did any of your school teachers remind you of a wise owl?
Do you know any wise owls today?
What does the idiom “a night owl” mean?
“a night owl”:This refers to a person who habitually stays up late and is active or who works at night, as in “You can call her after midnight, because she’s a night owl”. The term derives from the primary nocturnal habits of the owl. Usually, people who are night owls stay awake past midnight and extreme night owls may stay awake until just before or after dawn.
Night owls tend to feel most energetic just before they go to sleep at night.
Some curious synonyms for ‘a night owl’ are: lacking restraint; indulgent; wayward; wicked or wanton!
This colloquial term, originally used in the late 1500s for an owl that is active at night, was transferred to nocturnal human beings in the mid- 1800s. There is the sense of “one who seeks prey at night, one who stays up late”.
Who are some famous night owls?
Adolf Hitler (during WWII, slept from about 4 to 10 am and napped between 5 and 7pm);
Are you a night owl?
Do you know anyone who’s a night owl?
Do they work better at night?
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Anyone who knows me knows that I love Strombo . He is one of Canada’s best talk show hosts. His show produces clips called ‘ Best Story Ever’. They are short videos that either make you laugh or just leave you speechless.
The UK’s longest-running TV soap, Coronation Street focuses on the everyday lives of working class people in Manchester, England. In this Best Story Ever, Marc Baylis who plays the pawn shop owner Rob Donovan explains how in an episode, a football match ending up showing more of one actor than anyone had hoped.
What can we learn from this clip?
Rob was winding Steve up a lot. (i.e. do or say something jokingly to get someone upset or annoyed)
The goal-keeper was gong to try and save a penalty.(the player who defends the goal in foot ball/hockey)
The goalkeeper’s privates had managed to sneak outside of the shorts. (i.e. genitals / to move outside without being noticed by anyone)
It is my best Coronation Street story so far.(i.e. up to today)
How can we use them in context?
My co-worker and I wind each other up a lot. we are good buddies!
The goal-keeper did a bang up job last night. We won 2-0.
Keep your privates in your pants !
My teenager snuck out last night to go to a party.
I have had a relaxing vacation so far.
Practice answering these questions with your trainer, spouse or friends
Who/What winds you up?
Can you tell me about your favorite goal-keeper ever?
Have you ever been caught naked with your privates out?
Did you sneak out much as a teen?
How many books have you read so far this year?
It would make us really happy if you could share this post with a friend who needs to gain confidence in English. A little English every day goes a long way!
This is another expression I came across last week at the WOBI. Kevin Roberts from Saatchi & Saatchi used it when speaking of Lovemarks(+/+).
Where does ‘table stakes’ come from?
Well, it is a gambling term, referring to how much a person can bet in a round of poker.
How do we use it in business?
In business, it usually refers to a minimum level of investment, technology, or some other essential ingredient to make something become successful. It is the minimum requirement to have a credible competitive starting position in any business venture.
How would you translate it in italian?
In poker, I would say ‘scommessa mnima’. In business, it is definitely ‘fattore indispensabile’.
How do we use it in context?
Giving great value is table stakes for any lovemark.
Social business strategies are becoming table stakes today.
If you say something until you are blue in the face, you keep repeating it again and again but no one seems to listen to you. The attempt is not successful.
I heard a speech recently that mentioned this expression. The speaker was giving examples of companies that use compliance rather than stimulating engagement. The speaker said:”You can try until your blue in the face to recruit people with initiative but it will never work if your corporate culture is one of hidden compliance.’
This idiom comes from oxygen deprivation. If you don’t receive oxygen, your face will ultimately turn blue.
If you talk incessantly and forget to take a breath, your face will turn blue thus the expression ‘until you are blue in the face.’
How do we use it in context?
You can speak until you are blue in the face but she will never believe you.
They can try until they are blue in the face but I will not change my mind on this matter.
What is the Italian equivalent?
Puoi parlare fino a domani. = You can talk until you are blue in the face.
Tom Peters presented the acronym MBWA at the WOBI conference in Milan. It stands for Managing By Wandering Around. He argued that one of the biggest problems for managers is losing touch with their people.
What are the odds that you find a CEO wandering around speaking to people at the office? The chances are not that high in most cases. Does your CEO wander around speaking to people just because he wants to know how everything is going and what people are thinking ?
What is the meaning?
Odds is a plural noun and it means the chance or probability that something will happen.
‘What are the odds?‘ is like saying ‘What are the chances?’ or ‘What is the likelihood?’.
Interestingly, it can sometimes be used as a rhetorical question because we feel we know the answer.
How can we use it in context?
What are the odds that you will pass the exam if you don’t study? I figure they are very slim.
What are the odds that they will succeed in reaching the set budget? I think it is highly likely.
What are the odds of the teacher calling off the test tomorrow? Fat chance, right?
In the dialogue below, It sort of means ‘That’s incredible!’. In this case, it is a stand-alone expression.
Mary: Speaking of travel, how was your trip to Florida? John: It went really well. We managed to raise 10 000 dollars at the fundraiser. Surprisingly, I was on the same flight as my best friend without knowing it. Mary: Wow! What are the odds?