105、ants in your pants
Ants 就是蚂蚁, pants 就是裤子。蚂蚁钻进了裤子,你可以想象是个什么滋味了。你肯定坐不住了。 Ants in your pants 这个俗语的意思就是一个人很紧张,坐立不安。
例句 1 :The company financial report isn’t due until next Friday. But the boss has ants in his pants and wants us to have it all ready for him on Tuesday morning.
我们公司的财务报告应该是下星期五才交。但是,我们的老板紧张得要命,非要我们在星期二早上就交给他。
例句 2 :Say, what happened to the order for table seven? The guy’s been waiting for a half hour and he’s really getting ants in his pants for the cheeseburger and fries he ordered.
喂,七号桌子点的东西好了吗? 那人等他点的奶酪汉堡包和炸薯条已经等了半个小时啦,他都有点不耐烦了。
106、To have butterflies in one’s stomach
butterflies 是指蝴蝶, stomach 是人身体里消化食品的胃。To have butterflies in one’s stomach,从字面上来解释就是,一个人的胃里有蝴蝶。可是,这个说法的真正意思是一种持续不断的恐惧、紧张或忧虑的心情,和中文里说的“心里感到七上八下”很相似。
例句 1 :Sitting there at my sister’s wedding dinner, I had butterflies in my stomach because I know I’d have to stand up and make a speech.
我姐姐结婚那天晚上举行宴会的时候,我坐在那里心里直感到七上八下,因为我知道我得站起来讲话。
例句 2 :Yeah, sure I had butterflies in my stomach in the locker room! But once I got out on the court and caught that first pass, I was just fine.
比赛前在更衣室里的时候,我当然感到很紧张不安。可是,等我一上场,接到第一个传来的球的时候,我就没事了。
107、bug
在口语里,人们往往把昆虫叫做“小虫子”,也就是美国人说的 “bug” 这个字。 Bug 这个字可以指小虫子,但是,它也可以当动词用。在当动词用的时候, bug 这个字的意思在不同情况下就不一样,它可以解释为:令人烦恼,就像你周围有许多苍蝇或蚊子时让你心烦一样。 Bug 这个字也可以指窃听别人的电话或讲话。要是一个人说: “That loud music next door really bugs me.” 他的意思就是:“隔壁人家把音乐放那么响,真烦人。” to bug someone,这是使人心烦、令人讨厌的意思,或者也可以解释为“窃听”
例句 1 :You know what bugs me? Somebody coming a half hour early when you invite them to dinner. Very rude of them, I think. I tell you — it really bugs me!
你知道什么事情会让我感到讨厌吗?当你请朋友来吃晚饭,某个人早到半个小时。我认为这种人真不懂礼貌。我告诉你,那才叫我讨厌呐。
例句 2 :Our car is ten years old so my kids keep bugging me to buy a new one, but the old one still runs fine and I don’t want to put the money out right now to replace it.
我们家的汽车已经用了十年。所以我的孩子们老是鼓动我去买一辆新车。可是,那辆老车还很好用,我现在也不愿意花钱去买新车。
108、to louse up
to louse up,这是弄糟、毁坏的意思。
例句 1 :The lousy rain has certainly loused up my plans to take my girl friend to the beach today.
这讨厌的雨真是打乱了我的计划。我今天本来准备和我女朋友一起去海边玩的。
例句 2 :I loused up my chance to get that job at the radio station by showing up at the employment
interview two hours late. But could I help it if my car had a flat tire on my way to the meeting?
由于我那天去招工的地方面谈时晚到了两小时,因此我失去了在电台工作的机会。可是,在我去的路
上我汽车的轮胎炸了,那叫我有什么办法嘛?
109、to get a foot in the door
美国的商品推销员在不很久以前还是挨家挨户地去推销商品,例如吸尘机、厨房用品、百科全书和圣经等。当一位家庭主妇听到敲门声,把门打开的时候,精明能干的推销员就会把一只脚先伸到门里边,这样可以避免在他还没有机会介绍他的商品之前女主人就把门关上了。这种挨家挨户访问的推销员现在几乎已经销声匿迹了,大多数推销员现在都靠电话来招揽生意。可是,把一只脚先伸到门里边这个说法却成了一个人们经常用的俗语了,在英文里就是: to get a foot in the door。 To get a foot in the door 的意思就是:为了达到一个目的迈出了第一步,尽管你可能离达到目的的距离还很远。
例句 1 :You know that beautiful girl who sits ahead of me in English class? She keeps turning me down for dates, but I finally got a foot in the door today: she met me for coffee after class.
你知道英语课坐在我前面那个很漂亮的女孩子吗?我请她出去玩,她老是拒绝我。可是,今天我算是迈出了第一步。她答应下了课和我一起去喝咖啡。
例句 2 :Getting into politics is tough. But Martin got his foot in the door when he volunteered to go around town putting up posters for the Republican candidate for Congress.
要进入政界是很难的。可是,马丁曾经在当地义务地帮助那些共和党竞选国会议员的候选人张贴标语,这样他为能够进入政界迈出了第一步。
110、to be dead on one’s feet,这是指两只脚非常累。
例句 1 :Honey, I’ve got to sit down and rest before I take you out to dinner. I’m really dead on my feet tonight: we had the big year-end sale on and I was so busy I didn’t even have time for lunch.
亲爱的,我得坐下歇一会儿再和你一起出去吃晚饭。我今天晚上两只脚实在累死了。我们正在举行年底大减价,我忙的连午饭都没有时间吃。
例句 2 :My parents took me to Constitution Avenue to see the parade. After standing there for a whole day, my mom was so dead on her feet that she could not even cook dinner for us by the time we got home.
我爸爸妈妈带我到宪法大街去看游行。我们在那儿站了一天,回到家的时候,我妈妈的脚累得要死,连做晚饭也做不动了。
111、to stand on one’s own two feet
To stand on one’s own two feet 的意思恐怕不难猜到。一个人如果能站稳脚跟的话,他就一定能独立自主,靠自己的力量来办事。
例句 1 :Son, somebody may try to get you to smoke marijuana or drink, just to fit in with the crowd. But I hope you can stand on your own two feet and say no.
儿子呀,有的人为了要你合群也许会劝你喝酒或吸毒。但是我希望你能够独立自主,拒绝他们的引诱。
例句 2 :Bill Brown has managed to stay in Congress now for twenty years. The voters don’t always agree with him but they really like the way he stands on his own feet and makes his own decisions on which way to vote, regardless of pressures from all the lobbyists.
比尔·布朗在国会当议员已经二十年了。选民们不一定都同意他的观点,但是他们倒很欣赏他在对各种提案投票时的那种独立自主精神。不管那些游说者给他施加多大压力,他都按自己的决定投票。
112、To throw oneself at someone’s feet
1)这个俗语可以解释为:公开对某人表示爱慕。
例句 1 :I’m still looking for the right girl to marry. And when I find her, I’ll throw myself at her feet and ask her to spend the rest of her life with me.
我现在还在物色一个我认为合适的女孩作为我的妻子。一旦我找到了,我就要拜倒在她的石榴裙下,恳求她作为我的终身伴侣。
2)这个习语还可以解释为:为了得到一些好处而溜须拍马,或拜倒在某人脚下。
例句 2 :The prisoner who has been convicted as a traitor threw himself at the feet of the judge and beg for mercy.
那个被定罪为叛徒的犯人拜倒在法官的面前,求他发发慈悲。
113、to be swept off one’s feet
被爱慕或讨好的对象往往会突然感到非常兴奋而不由自主地变得飘飘然起来。这种情景在英文里是这么说的: to be swept off one’s feet。
例句 1 :Dick was so crazy about Jane that he threw himself at her feet. Jane was swept off her feet and they’re getting married next Tuesday.
迪克实在是爱简,他完全拜倒在她的石榴裙下。这一下使得简感到飘飘然,不由自主了。他们竟然决定下星期二就结婚。
例句 2 :Hal, I know how anxious you are to get married and start a family. But don’t let yourself get swept off your feet by a pretty face: think about what you are doing before you get caught.
海尔,我知道你是非常急于结婚成家。但是,你不要被一张漂亮的脸弄得昏昏然的。在问题还没有发生前,你得脑子清楚一些,明白自己到底在干什么。
114、Don’t let the grass grow under one’s feet
Grass 是指草。 Don’t let the grass grow under one’s feet 从字面上来解释,这句话的意思是:不要让草在你脚底下长出来,实际上也就是说,你不要什么事也不干,浪费时间。
例句1 :Right now the house is a real bargain. Don’t let the grass grow under your feet — sign the agreement today before somebody grabs it.”
现在房产价格实在是非常便宜。你不要浪费时间,最好今天就签合同,免得给别人把这栋房子抢走。
例句 2 :I tell you, don’t let the grass grow under you feet — this is the last day of this sale and the price on this model goes up a thousand dollars tomorrow!
我告诉你,今天是这次减价的最后一天。这种型号的车子,明天就要上涨一千美元。所以你不要犹豫不决,浪费时间。
115、to pull no punches
Punch 这个字的一种解释就是拳击;To pull no punches,这是指毫不保留地告诉别人你的看法。
例句 1 :When I saw my brother Joe, I didn’t pull any punches — I told him to stop drinking and go out and find a job.
当我见到我哥哥乔的时候,我毫不保留地对他说,不要再喝酒了,还是出去找个工作吧。
例句 2 :I pulled no punches when I went to see the auto dealer who sold me such a lousy car. I told him he ought to be ashamed to charge so much for a car that had so many things wrong with it. No, he didn’t give me my money back, but I sure felt better afterwards.
那个汽车商卖给我的这辆汽车毛病太多了。我去看他的时候毫不客气地对他说,卖这么次的车给我还收我那么多的钱,你自己应该感到害臊。虽然他并没有把钱还给我,可是,说了这些话我感到痛快多了。
116、straight from the horse’s mouth
Straight from the horse’s mouth,从字面上来解释它的意思是:直接来自马的嘴巴。可是,这个俗语的真正意思是:你听到的消息是真实的,因为这消息来自可靠的来源。马和消息可靠又有什么关系呢?你要知道,远在人们还没有使用汽车的年代,人们是依靠马作为他们主要的交通工具,认为马是十分可靠的。现在,汽车已经早就代替了马,但是这个俗语仍然被广为使用。
例句 1 :I tell you I know for certain that Lisa will be promoted to manager. The boss told me himself, so it’s straight from the horse’s mouth!
告诉你,我知道莉沙肯定会被提升为经理的。这是老板亲口告诉我的,这个消息是绝对可靠的!
例句 2 :Say, did you hear that Sally and Bob are going to get married. Honest, I’m not joking. I heard it from Bob himself, so it’s straight from the horse’s mouth!
喂,你听说了没有,萨利和鲍勃要结婚了。我可不是开玩笑,我说的是实话。我是听鲍勃自己讲的,因此这消息是完全可靠的!
117、no holds barred
No holds barred 这个说法是来自摔交运动。no holds barred 是指人们在争论或其他场合不顾对方的面子和情绪,毫不迟疑地把自己的想法说出来。
例句 1 :My wife and I had a real no holds barred talk last night about all the things wrong with our marriage.
我和我的妻子昨晚可真是毫不留情地谈了一谈,把我们婚姻方面的所有问题不管三七二十一都说了出来。
例句 2 :That TV debate between those two guys running for senator was sure a no holds barred affair. They spent more time saying nasty things about each other than they did talking about their plans.
那两个竞选参议员的人在电视上进行辩论时真是毫不留情地说话。他们花在互相攻击方面的时间比介绍他们方针的时间还多。
118、to let one’s hair down
To let one’s hair down 描绘出一幅可爱的画面。过去,西方女子很多都留长头发,出去应酬时把头发盘在头上梳出各种式样来。晚上回家后,她们就把发卡一个个地从头发里拿出来,让头发很自然地披在肩上。 To let one’s hair down 的实质意思也就是解除表面的装饰,使一切显得很自然、真实和放松,或把心理的话说出来。 To let one’s hair down 不一定用于女子,也可以用在男性。
例句1 :The president has to make so many official appearances that he seldom gets a chance to let his hair down and enjoy life like ordinary people.
总统要出席许多公开场合,因此他很少有机会像普通老百姓那样轻松地享受生活。
例句 2 :Sally, we’ve been good friends for a long time. But lately I get the idea you are very much upset with me. I wish you’d let your hair down and tell me what’s wrong to make you feel this way.
萨莉,我们多年来一直是好朋友,可是最近我感到你对我非常不高兴。我希望你能够坦率地告诉我,到底是些什么事让你这么不高兴。
119、loose cannon
美国人经常会说某个人是一个:loose cannon;loose 是松散的意思,而 cannon 是指大炮。Loose cannon 的来历是几百年前当人们在海上作战时,他们往往在船上放好些大炮,每一座大炮放在一个带四个轮子的平台上。在战争间隙的时候,船员们用很粗的绳子把这些大炮栓住,不让它们随便移动。可是,当风暴来临,这些绳子在风浪的冲击下断了以后,大炮就会在船甲板上到处滚动,会把那些不幸就在大炮旁边的船员轧死,这比真正的敌人还要危险。现在,loose cannon的意思和打仗并没有什么关系。人们把 loose cannon 用来指一个失去控制、无视权威、打破常轨的人,这种人往往会伤害和他自己站在一边的人。例如,有些美国政府官员在重大问题上擅自采取行动,也不向总统汇报。国会议员就把这些人称为 loose cannon。
例句 :I know this guy is a smart political worker. But he’s hard to control. In fact, he’s a loose cannon who might do more damage to our side than the man I’m running against.
我知道这家伙在政治工作方面很聪明。但是,这个人很难控制。实际上,他就像一个没有约束的大炮,给我们造成的危害可能会比我竞选对手造成的危害更大。
120、blockbuster
Blockbuster 原来是第二次世界大战期间联军在和纳粹德国进行空战中用的武器,这种武器的力量十分强大,它可以把城市中两条街之间的所有楼房夷为平地。而现在,blockbuster 是指某件事取得很大的成功,特别是指文艺界一些成功的电影、歌曲、剧本等。
例句 1 :A story from Hollywood said that the new James Bond film is the blockbuster film of the season.
好莱坞的一篇文章说,詹姆斯·邦德新拍的那个电影是这一季度最成功的片子。
例句 2 :The biggest Hollywood blockbuster of all time still remains “Gone With the Wind”, the classic picture about the civil war. And the amazing thing is it was made back in 1939.
好莱坞历来最成功的片子仍然是关于美国南北战争的经典作品「飘」。令人惊奇的是这部片子还是早在1939年拍摄的。
121、bomb
Bomb 就是炸弹,也一样是一种武器。但是,在电影和音乐方面,你要是用 bomb 这个字,它的意思就是不成功,不受欢迎,卖座率很低。要是有一则新闻报导说最近一位著名歌星录制的歌曲是一个 bomb 的话,那就是告诉你,这张唱片或磁带没有像想象中销路那么好。
例句 1 :A newspaper says that a picture that had cost 34 million dollars to make has bombed at the box office.
一份报纸说,一部花了三千四百万美元摄制的影片卖座率很低。也就是说,这部电影的本钱都收不回来。
例句 2 :This young producer made money on his first three films, so the studio invested forty million in his fourth film. But it turned out to be a real bomb — it didn’t make enough to get back the investment.
这位年轻的电影制片人开始拍摄的三部电影卖座率很高,赚了不少钱,所以电影公司就投资四千万美元让他拍第四部电影。可是,这部电影的卖座率实在很低,因此连本钱都没赚回来。
122、to drop a bombshell
To drop a bombshell 的意思是:宣布令人震惊的消息,就像一枚炸弹在你身旁突然爆炸一样让你吃惊。
例句 1 :Grandfather dropped a bombshell last night when he told the family he is marrying a woman 40 years younger than he.
祖父昨晚上对家里的人说,他要和一个比他年轻四十岁的女子结婚,这可真叫大家吃了一惊。
例句 2 :In March 1968 President Lyndon Johnson dropped one of the biggest bombshells ever dropped in American politics when he announced that he would not run for re-election because of the Vietnam War.
1968年3月美国总统约翰逊宣布,因为越南战争,他决定不竞选连任。这可是美国政治史上最令人震惊的消息之一了。
123、odd 这个字仅仅只有三个字母组成,可是它却有好几个意思:它可以形容某个很奇怪的人或者行为,也可以指一、三、五这样的单数,它还可以解释为“多一点”,如: fifty-odd men,意思是“五十几个人”。Odd 这个字还可以和别的字合在一起用,当然和不同的字合在一起它的意思也就不同。例如:Oddball。要是你说某人是个 oddball,那就是说这个人表现的很奇怪,和一般人不一样。我们来举个例子吧:
例句 1 :My friend Joe is certainly an oddball. In the summer he puts his shoes in the refrigerator at night so his feet will be cool when he goes to work in the morning.
我的朋友乔真怪。在夏天,他晚上把鞋子放在冰箱里,说是第二天上班去的时候,脚可以凉快一点。
例句 2 :And another oddball is Bill, especially when it comes to food. Can you believe it, he even puts catchup on his ice cream. Talk about oddballs!
另外一个很怪的人是比尔,特别是在吃东西方面。你信不信,他吃冰淇淋的时候竟然还要加蕃茄酱。真是什么怪人都有!
124、Odds and ends
Odds and ends 的意思是:零碎东西。
例句 1 :Okay, I’m all packed now, except for a few odds and ends I’ll put in a handbag and carry on the plane with me.
行了,我的行李都准备好了,还有一些零星小东西,我准备把它们放在手提包里,随身带上飞机去。
例句 2 :One good thing I got done at the office today was clean up my desk. I’d let so many odds and ends pile up that you could scarcely see the desk itself. But I got busy and took care of everything.
今天我在办公室里做的一件好事是把我的桌子整理乾净了。那些零零碎碎的东西越堆越多,简直连桌面都看不见了。可是,我今天抓紧时间,把所有的东西都整理好了。
125、英文里“水果”这个字,也就是 “fruit” 是来自很早以前的一个拉丁文里的动词,意思是“享受”。而事实上也确实如此,香蕉、苹果、橘子、樱桃、桃子或葡萄等水果放在果盘里看起来都十分吸引人。因此、有关水果的俗语往往是具有一种肯定和完善的含义,例如:peaches and cream。
peaches 就是桃子, cream 是指奶油。 Peaches and cream的意思是:一切都很美好。有人可能会问:桃子和奶油有什么关系呢?这是因为美国人在吃水果时往往喜欢把水果切成块,然后加一点奶油一起吃。实际上,美国人吃很多东西都喜欢和奶油一起吃。所以,peaches and cream 就意味着完美无缺。
例句 1 :Sally and Joe had a big fight last week, but they’ve made up and now everything is peaches and cream again.
沙莉和乔伊上星期大吵了一场。可是,后来他们互相谈开了,现在他们又很要好了。
Peaches and cream 还可以形容一个年轻少女容光焕发的面孔:
例句 2 :Peter’s sister is a lovely girl. She has a real peaches and cream complexion, soft and white as milk and a touch of pink like a fresh ripe peach.
比德的妹妹是一个可爱的女孩。她的皮肤真是完美无缺,柔软洁白得像牛奶,还透露出一点像成熟了的新鲜桃子的粉色。
126、sour grapes
Sour 是酸的意思,grapes 就是葡萄。中文里也有酸葡萄的说法,而且中英文的意思也完全相同。
例句 1 :Bill was sure he’d be elected class president. But when Mary beat him in the voting, he told us he was glad he didn’t get the job because it was too much work. That’s nothing but sour grapes!
比尔开始认为他肯定能当选为班主席。但是,当玛丽在选举中击败他以后,他对我们说,他很高兴他没有得到这个职位,因为当了班主席工作太多了。他这么说纯属是酸葡萄心理!
例句 2 :Talk about a clear case of sour grapes! When Bob’s girl friend left him to marry another man, he went around telling anybody who would listen that he left her because she wasn’t good enough for him.
要说吃酸葡萄吧,这件事可是很明显的了。当鲍勃的女朋友和另外一个人结婚后,鲍勃到处去对那些愿意听他诉苦的人说,是他不要他的女朋友的,因为他的女朋友配不上他。
127、lemon
Lemon 就是柠檬。柠檬是非常酸的一种水果,大概没有其他东西比它更酸的了。但是,作为一个俗语,Lemon 是指那些原来在想象中很好,但是结果却非常不好的东西或事情。例如毛病百出的汽车,亏本的股票等。
例句 1 :Mr. Lee paid $15,000 for his new car. But he got a real lemon: it’s never run right and it spends more time in the garage getting fixed than it does on the road.
李先生花了一万五千块美金买了这辆新车。可是,这辆车却是毛病百出。这车从来也没有好好地跑过,它在车行里修的时间比它在马路上跑的时间还多。
例句 2 :Mr. Green usually gives me good advice. But the computer company stock he told me to buy was a lemon. I had to sell it at the price I have paid for it and lost a thousand dollars.
一般来说,格林先生给我提供的建议都是很好的。可是这次他让我买那个电脑公司的股票却是个馊主意。我不得不按原价抛出,结果损失了一千美元。
128、going banana
对我们大多数人来说,香蕉是很好吃的,又香又甜,营养很丰富。可是,going banana 的意思是:一些令人不愉快的事把人弄的十分烦燥,好像快发疯似的。究竟为什么要把香蕉说的这么糟糕,这实在很难解释。然而,这个俗语在美国那些家里有青少年的家长当中是十分普遍的。
例句 1 :Mary spends all her time listening to loud music, talking on the phone, or looking at herself in the mirror instead of studying or helping us around the house. I tell you, that kid is driving us all bananas!
玛丽把她所有的时间都用在听音乐,还得把音量放得大大的,或者是打电话,或者照镜子,而不是把时间用在学习上或帮助我们做点家务。我告诉你,那个孩子真是快要把我们逼疯了。
例句 2 :I’m going bananas over the noise in the apartment next door. They play their television loud enough for the whole building to hear. And they never turn it off until one o’clock in the morning!
隔壁人家的闹声真快把我逼疯了。他们把电视机开得那末响,整个楼都听见了。而且,不到半夜一点他们从来不关电视机。
129、to shoot the breeze
To shoot就是发射、开枪、发炮等,breeze就是阵阵微风。To shoot the breeze这个习惯用语使人脑子里出现了一幅画面,也就是:一些好朋友没事聚在一起闲聊天,毫无顾忌地想说什么就说什么。
例句 1 :On Friday nights I usually go to a movie. But it was raining so hard last night I just stayed in the dorm to sit around and shoot the breeze with a couple of friends.
一般来说,星期五晚上我总是去看电影的。可是,昨晚上雨下得好大呀,所以我就呆在宿舍里和两个朋友一起聊天。
例句 2 :One thing I enjoy about shooting the breeze — you can relax and say anything you want to. You’re among friends and nobody takes things seriously.
我很喜欢聊天,因为你可以很放松,想说什么都行。你是和朋友在一起,没有人会很认真的。
130、through the grapevine
grape是葡萄,grapevine就是葡萄藤。Through the grapevine的意思实际上就和中文里说的:通过小道消息来的一样。也就是说,这个消息是经过人们口头传播传到他这儿来的,他也不知道到底是从谁那儿开始的。早在一百多年前,当美国南北战争正在进行的时刻,士兵们把那些非官方渠道来的消息,也就是秘密地在他们中间传播的消息称为grapevine。
例句 1 :What do you think of the news that our regiment is being transferred to California. It’s not announced officially yet, but this morning I got it through the grapevine.
你对我们部队调到加利福尼亚州去的消息是怎么想的。这个消息还没有正式宣布,我是今天早上通过小道消息听来的。
例句 2 :I don’t always believe what I get through the grapevine, but it’s true at least half the time and it’s a lot faster than whatever the army tells you about what we’re doing.
我不完全相信小道消息。但是,小道消息至少有一半是确实的,而且比部队领导告诉我们的要快多了。
131、中国人常常用「如鱼得水」来形容一个一切都很顺当的环境。美国人常用的一个俗语却刚好和「如鱼得水」相反,他们说:a fish out of water。从字面上解释就是:没有水的鱼。你肯定经历过一种场合,当时你觉得很不自然,和周围的人或环境格格不入。A fish out of water作为一个俗语,就是指这种感觉的,它的意思是某人和他所处的环境不融恰,使他感到很别扭、很难堪。
例句 1 :At the conference I was a fish out of water. All the speeches were in French, a language I never studied.
参加那个会议真叫我感到别扭。所有人发表讲话时都用法文,可是我从来也没有学过法文。
例句 2 :Everybody else at the party ended up in the swimming pool. But I was a fish out of water because I can’t swim.
参加聚会的每个人最后都到游泳池去游泳了,我真感到别扭,因为我不会游泳。
132、to teach a fish how to swim
要是谁想教鱼怎么游泳的话,那简直是班门弄斧,多余的了。To teach a fish how to swim作为俗语的意思是指班门弄斧:给别人提出完全没有必要的建议或劝告。
例句 1 :My son, fresh out of college, keeps telling me how to run my business. But I’ve been making good money for 30 years so he’s teaching a fish how to swim.
我的儿子大学刚毕业,可是他却不断地来告诉我应该怎么做生意。我三十年来生意做得很好,赚了不少钱。所以,他来告诉我怎么做生意简直是多余的。
例句 2 :The day after I got my private pilot’s license, I told this man at the party all about how to fly an airplane. Later I learned he was an airline pilot who flew jumbo jets — I’d been teaching a fish how to swim.
我在得到飞行员执照后的一天,在一次聚会上告诉一个人怎么驾驶飞机。后来,我听说那个人是开大型喷气机的飞行员。我去告诉他怎么驾驶飞机真是班门弄斧。
133、有些人在处理问题的时候很果断,但是也有不少人前怕狼后怕虎,在处理问题的时候左顾右盼,迟迟不能做出决策。比如说,几个朋友一块儿去钓鱼。可是,其中一个人心不在焉,根本没有好好钓鱼。这时,他的朋友就会对他说:“Fish or cut bait。” Fish or cut bait在这个情况下的意思就是:“得了,你要不想钓鱼就乾脆去干别的。”
Fish or cut bait从字面上来解释就是:你要就钓鱼,否则就切断你的鱼饵。换句话说,也就是你要不做这个,那就做那个,总得有所决定。Fish or cut bait作为俗语的意思就是:不要举棋不定,而要当机立断。
例句 1 :Son, either go on to college or go out and find yourself a job. It’s time to fish or cut bait!
儿子呀,你要就去上大学,否则就出去给自己找个工作。是作出决定的时候啦!
例句 2 :Mister Wilson, you asked me to hold that red convertible until you made up your mind whether to buy it. Well, I’ve got another customer who wants it, so it’s time for you to fish or cut bait.
威尔逊先生,你要我把那辆红色敞篷车先留一下,等你作出决定究竟买不买。现在,另一位顾客想要买那辆车,所以,我得请你作出最后决定了。
134、cold fish
Cold fish是指那些对人很冷淡,很不友好,根本没有意思和别人友好相处的人。这些人往往不受人欢迎。
例句 1 :Let’s not invite Joe to the party: he’s such a cold fish he’ll spoil it for everybody else.
别请乔伊来参加这次聚会。他这人对人太冷淡,太不友好。他来了会使其他所有人都扫兴的。
例句 2 :I’m not going to vote for that man for senator — he’s too much of a cold fish. I shook hands with him once and it was like shaking hands with a dead mackeral.
我才不投那个竞选参议员的候选人的票呐。他实在是个不友好的人。我有一次和他握手,那冷冰冰的样子简直是像和一条死鱼握手一样。
、to feast your eyes on
中文里有“饱尝眼福”的说法。美国英语里也有类似的习惯用语。其中之一就是to feast your eyes on。Feast的意思是:宴请,举行盛大的筵席,或使人得到享受等。宴请你的眼睛,使你的眼睛得到享受,实际上也就是“饱尝眼福”的意思。To feast your eyes on这个说法可以应用到各个方面,比如说看到美貌的女子,欣赏自然风光,观赏艺术作品等。
例句 1 :The place I enjoyed most was the National Gallery of Art. I spent a whole afternoon there feasting my eyes on all their modern paintings.
我最喜欢的地方是国家艺术馆。我化了整整一个下午在那里欣赏他们的现代绘画,真是饱尝了眼福。
例句 2 :I’m on diet trying to lose ten pounds, so I stopped to feast my eyes on the cakes in the bakery window, but resisted the temptation to go in and buy one to eat.
我正在设法减肥,想减轻我的体重十磅。为此,我只是到那些面包房去饱饱眼福,但是尽量克制自己不进去买东西吃。
136、to hit between the eyes
To hit between the eyes听起来是好像是很痛苦的事,但是作为一个俗语,它的意思仅仅是:十分惊奇。
例句 1 :When my wife told me we were going to have a baby, it hit me right between the eyes.
当我的妻子告诉我她已经怀孕了的时候,我真是惊奇万分。
例句 2 :I bet I fooled around with these equations for ten minutes but then all of a sudden the right answer hit me right between the eyes.
我敢打赌,我在这些方程式上花了总共十分钟还没有得出答案。后来,不知怎么回事,我突然想出了正确的答案。
137、eyes pop out
人们在碰到突然的、出乎意料之外的事的时候往往会睁大了眼睛表示惊奇。美国人在形容这种情景时经常说: “Somebody’s eyes pop out.”其实,中国人在形容某人感到十分惊奇时也经常说:那个人的眼珠子都快掉出来了。这和英文里的eyes pop out很相似。
例句 1 :My wife’s eyes popped out when she saw the necklace I bought her for our twentieth wedding anniversary.
在我们庆祝结婚二十周年时,我给我的妻子买了一条项链。当她看到那条项链时,她眼睛睁得可大了。例句 2 :I hadn’t seen my niece since she was a child, so when she visited town the other day my eyes popped out — she’s grown into a very beautiful young woman.
我还是在我侄女是个孩子的时候见过她。自从那时起,我一直就没有机会见到她。因此,那天她突然来这儿访问使我感到十分惊奇。她已经长大,变成一个很漂亮的年轻少女了。
138、Not even bat an eye
有的人不管发生什么大事,似乎从来也不会感到惊奇,他们总能保持镇静,连眼睛都不眨一下,这在英文里就是:Not even bat an eye。Bat这个字的一个解释是眨眼睛。可是,在这种情况下,它经常是以否定的形式出现的。
例句 1 :Bill didn’t even bat an eye when they told him he had just won the lottery. He just shrugged and said, “Well, I guess I can use the money.”
当比尔听到他中了头奖的时候,他连眼睛都没有眨一下,只是耸耸肩膀说:“行,我想这些钱是会有用的。”
例句 2 :Bill lost five thousand dollars on this one poker hand, but he didn’t even bat an eye–he just shrugged and said, “Easy come, easy go. Come on and deal the next hand!”
比尔在仅仅打一付扑克牌游戏的过程中就输了五千美元。可是他眼睛都没眨一下。他只是耸耸肩说:“来得容易,去得容易。快,发牌吧。”
139、to keep one’s eyes peeled
比如说,当你在交通十分拥挤的情况下开车的时候,你一定会很紧张。这时,你的眼睛就会张得大大的,注意地看周围是否有危险的情况。美国人有一个常用的俗语用来形容这种情景的: to keep one’s eyes peeled. To keep one’s eyes peeled实际上就是提高警觉的意思。
例句 1 :The beltway is very dangerous to drive on, especially during the rush hour. So be sure to keep your eyes peeled when you change lanes to pass one of those big trucks they call eighteen wheelers.
在环绕华盛顿地区的这条高速公路上开车是非常危险的,特别是上下班交通最忙的时候。所以,当你要改换车道,超过那种十八个轮子大卡车的时候,你一定要十分警觉。
例句 2 :Joe, I’m going to have to drill this lock out of the door for us to get in. The drill will make some noise, so keep your eyes peeled for the cops.
乔伊,我得把这门上的锁钻下来,这样我们才能进去。我钻的时候会有声音,所以你得睁大眼睛,注意看有没有警察。
140、to have the wool pulled over one’s eyes
To have the wool pulled over one’s eyes,这个习惯用语的意思就是:蒙蔽某人。美国是一个自由贸易的国家,但是在做生意的过程中受骗也是经常发生的。
例句1 :Poor Mr. Brown–his partner certainly pulled the wool over his eyes. He had no idea the partner was stealing all the profits until the man suddenly left town.
可怜的黄先生,和他合伙的人肯定欺骗了他。黄先生一直不知道那人在偷偷地把赚来的钱放到自己口袋里去,直到那人突然一走不返,这才使他恍然大悟。”
例句2 :I won’t vote for that politician again. I’ve seen him pull the wool over the eyes of the voters with lots of promises, but he never carries them out once he gets into office.
我不会再投那个政客的票了。我已经看到他向选民们许好多愿来蒙蔽他们。但是,一旦当选,他所作的保证一个也没有兑现过。
141、to keep one’s eye on the ball
To keep one’s eye on the ball这个常用语原先是来自球类运动,如网球、高尔夫球、垒球等。你一定要把眼睛看准了才能打到这些球;现在to keep one’s eye on the ball已经可以应用到一般的事物上了。
例句 1 :We were playing Chicago there and the crowd was yelling and booing and waving handkerchiefs to distract us. But I kept my eye on the ball, swung as hard as I could and hit a home run. That Chicago crowd sure quieted down as I jogged around the bases.
我们那时正在芝加哥和当地一个球队比赛,看球的人群又喊又嚷,还挥动手绢想分散我们的注意力。可是,我集中精力,使出所有的劲儿来打球,结果打了一个本垒打。这下,当我沿着垒跑的时候,芝加哥的观众就变得很安静了。
例句 2 :Tom, your sales record is way down the past six months. You’ve only sold 17 cars all this time. You’d better start keeping your eye on the ball, or you’ll find yourself looking for another job.
汤姆,你的销售量在过去半年中一直很低。你在这段时间里一共才卖了十七辆汽车。你还是集中注意力地工作,不然,你恐怕得另找工作了。
142、eye-opener。
Eye-opener是一个字。Eye-opener有两个意思,一个是表示惊奇,就像下面这个女子所表达的情绪:
例句 1 :Of course, John and I have had a few problems, just like most married couples. But I always felt we had a good, solid marriage. So it was a terrible eye-opener when I opened the letter he’d left on the kitchen table and found out he’d run off with his old college sweetheart.
当然,约翰和我是有一些矛盾,就像大多数夫妻一样。但是,我一直认为我们的婚姻是有牢固基础的。所以,当我打开他留在厨房桌上的信,知道他和他以前大学里的女朋友出走了的时候,我真是非常惊奇。
Eye-opener的另一意思是:开阔了眼界。
例句 2 :Seeing those color films the astronauts took off the earth on their flight to the moon was certainly an eye-opener. I never realized how beautiful and how lonely our planet looks hanging there in space.
看到宇航员在登上月球时拍的那些有关地球的彩色照片真是开了眼界。我从来也不知道我们的地球在空间是这么美丽、这么孤单。
143、美国人很喜欢跳蚤市场。跳蚤市场在英文里就是:flea market。
什么是flea market呢?Flea market实际上和跳蚤一点关系都没有。Flea market是一种往往在周末举行的非正式集市,flea market一般都是在户外,那儿有许多摊贩出售各种各样的东西,有不少都是用过的旧东西,新的东西也有,但是质量一般都比较差,价钱也很便宜。可是,要是你眼光敏锐的话,你能花很少的钱买到很有价值的古董和其他东西。
例句 1 :I was lucky when I went to the flea market today. In the middle of all the worthless junk I found a carved jade Chinese snuff bottle and bought it for five dollars: the seller didn’t know what it was.
我今天去跳蚤市场,运气还真不错。在那些毫无用处的破玩意儿堆里,我找到一个中国鼻烟壶,是用玉做的,上面还有雕刻。我才花了五块钱。卖东西的人根本不知道那是什么东西。
例句2 :For me a flea market is a sad place–all those memories of the past: stuff that used to be precious to people who have died or grown old or just moved away.
在我看来,跳蚤市场是一个令人感伤的地方,市场上卖的东西过去对一些人来说是很宝贵的,但是他们老的老了,死的死了,有的人也已经不知去向了。
144、to clam up
Clam在中文里就是蛤蜊,当蛤蜊外面的壳关起来的时候,你要想把它打开是不容易的。因此,clam up的意思就是嘴巴闭得紧紧的。
例句 1 :Hey, clam up, will you! I’ve heard enough already about how hard you work in the office!
咳,你别说了,行不行!我已经听够了你在办公室工作多卖力的话了。
例句 2 :The cops found a man they know was a witness to the murder. But he has clammed up and won’t talk–he’s afraid the killer’s mob will come after him if he testifies in court.
警察找到了一个人,他们知道他是一起谋杀案的目击者。可是,他嘴巴很紧,什么也不肯说,他怕要是他出庭作证,那个谋杀集团不会放过他。
145、baloney
Baloney这个字是来自意大利地名Bologna,那里出一种很便宜的香肠,里面放的是一些质量不太好的肉末。Bologna是怎么变成baloney的,这就不太清楚了。可是,人们逐渐用baloney这个字来形容某些人说的话一钱不值。
例句 1 :Honey, the old man told me what a great job I’m doing and how I am so valuable to the company. But he said the company isn’t making enough money right now to give anybody a raise, he thinks he may be able to do something about it a year from now. But I’m afraid all he gave me was a lot of baloney.
亲爱的,那老头说我工作做得如何好,我对公司来说又是如何重要。但是,他说,当前公司没有足够的收入来给任何人加工资。他说明年他也许能想办法给我加工资。不过,他说的那些话恐怕多半都是空话。
例句 2 :Baloney! That’s all it is when my opponent keeps saying that my voting record always favors big business over the average citizen. Let me say it again: that’s nothing but baloney!
胡说!我的对立面说我在投票时老是从大企业的利益出发,而不考虑一般老百姓。让我再重复一遍:他们的这些话纯属一派胡言。
146、美国人把那些政府官员接受的贿赂称为:kickback。政府官员接受贿赂是违反美国联邦、州和其他地方法律的,可能会受到严厉的惩罚。
例句 1 :John Doe, the former head of the City Public Works Department, went on trial today in the district court. He is charged with taking a 50,000-dollar kickback from the Blank Construction Company after giving them a 3 million dollars contract to repair the city streets.
以前市政工程部的头头约翰多伊今天在地区法院受审。他的罪名是接受布兰克建筑公司给他的五万美元贿赂,以换取他给该公司一项价值三百万美元修理街道的合同。
例句 2 :We thought our congressman was a sure bet to be re-elected. But he’s in real trouble–his opponent charges him with getting kickbacks for voting a certain way and seems to have some evidence to prove it.
大家都以为我们的议员肯定会再次当选的,但是他现在可碰到麻烦事了,他的对手指责他在对某项提案进行投票方面接受贿赂,而且他们好像还有证据。
147、美国多年来有一首流行歌曲,它的名字叫“I get a kick out of You”
Kick就是用脚踢的意思,不管是人的脚,或是马的脚,被踢的人一般来说是会感到很痛的。但是,这首歌的名字“I Get A Kick Out of You”却毫无痛苦之意,相反的,它的意思是:由于你的爱情使我感到快乐和激动。
例句 1 :Say, Barbie, let me tell you something. I really get a kick out of being around you. If you feel the same way about me, maybe we ought to get serious and think about getting engaged to each other.
咳,芭比,我有些想法要告诉你。和你在一起真使我感到非常愉快。要是你对我也有同样的感觉的话,那我们得认真对待我们的关系,考虑我们是否应该订婚了。
to get a kick out of这个俗语可以用于任何一个使你高兴的人,或任何一样令你喜爱和激动的东西。
例句 2 :I’m not a kid anymore but I still get a big kick out of going to see a circus. The elephants, the clowns, the acrobats–they make me feel like a kid again.
我已经不是个孩子了。但是,每次去看马戏总是使我感到非常高兴和激动,那些大象、小丑和杂技、使我感到我好像又成了一个孩子似的。
148、to kick the bucket
To kick the bucket,它的意思是:一个人死了。这个俗语可能是出自很久以前有关一个工人的故事。那是在一个静静的夜晚,这个工人在马棚里,站在一个翻过来放的桶上面,他在屋顶的房梁上挂一根绳,把绳的另一头套住自己的脖子,再打一个结。然后把脚下的桶踢开,这样他就吊死了。现在,人们经常用to kick the bucket来指某人死了。特别要指出的是,to kick the bucket这个用法一般是对死者不太尊重的,因此在有礼貌的谈话中不太使用这一俗语。
例句 1 :Your old friend Charley’s not working here any more. In fact we heard he kicked the bucket down in Texas last winter; he got kicked in the head by a horse he was trying to saddle up.
你的老朋友查理已经不在这儿做了。事实上,我们听说他在去年冬天在得克萨斯州死了。他在套马的时候,那匹马往他的头上踢了一脚。
To kick the bucket这个俗语也可以用于动物。例如:
例句 2 :That old dog next door finally kicked the bucket. He was sixteen years old, toothless, blind and could hardly get around. Sixteen years is a long time for a dog, so it was time for him to go.
隔壁的那条狗终于死了。那狗已经有十六岁了,牙都没了,又瞎,行动也不便。十六岁了,对狗来说也是时候了。
149、to kick up one’s heels
大家大概都看到过一匹年轻的俊马在宽阔的草原上兴高采烈地奔跑的情景吧!这是一幅很美丽的图像,马的前腿往前伸展,后腿很有节奏地往上踢。美国有一个俗语就是建筑在这一形象之上的。这个俗语就是: To kick up one’s heels,它从字面上来解释就是:把后脚往上踢。但是,实际上to kick up one’s heels是用来形容人们到外面去寻欢作乐,就像马在草原上奔跑一样。
例句 1 :How about coming out with us Wednesday night? We’re all going to take Bill Glover out to dinner. Then later we’ll drop into a few night spots. It’s Bill’s last chance to kick up his heels, you know–he’s getting married the next morning.
星期三晚上跟我们一起出去玩,怎么样?我们大家一起请比尔格洛弗出去吃晚饭。然后,我们再到几个像夜总会那样的地方去玩。这是比尔到外面去寻欢作乐的最后一次机会了,你知道,他第二天上午就要结婚了。
例句 2 :My mother and dad are over sixty, but they still like to go out once in a while to have dinner and do a little dancing and kick up their heels. Of course, they go home a lot earlier than they used to.
我的爸爸和妈妈已经六十多了,但是他们有时还是喜欢到外面去吃晚饭、跳跳舞,高兴高兴。当然罗,他们现在回家的时间要比以前早多了。
150、to kick off
To kick off的意思是一项活动,或一个计划的开始。To kick off原来是用在足球比赛的。每次比赛开始都是由一个球队把球踢到对方球队去。可是现在这个俗语几乎可以用在任何方面,意思是:开始(一项活动或一个计划)。美国人经常用to kick off来表示竞选活动的开始。
例句 1 :Last night Michael Smith kicked off his campaign for the U.S. Senate with a speech here promising lower taxes and a bigger budget for schools and more help to the farmers.
昨晚,迈克尔斯密斯在这儿发表讲话,作为他竞选美国参议员竞选活动的开始。他在讲话中向选民们保证降低税收,增加学校经费,并给予农民更多的帮助。
例句 2 :Now that my exams are all finished, I’m going to kick off the summer vacation by going down to Ocean City for a week to get some sun, some surf and a chance to look at the girls.
现在考试已经全部结束,我要先到欧欣城去玩一个星期,去晒晒太阳,在海上玩冲浪,还可以看看那里的姑娘们。这就作为我暑假的开始。


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