Crazy American Expressions
By: Amber Hayes, Cultural Outreach Assistant
You’ve studied English for years; you’ve got the grammar textbooks that you’ve highlighted in every color and notecards with English vocabulary.
So why is it that you have no idea what your neighbor is saying?
English – much like any other language – is alive. It doesn’t always follow the rules and there are some phrases that don’t make it into school textbooks. Here are a few American English expressions you’ll most likely hear while you’re in the United States.
- To Be Beat – To be very tired
“I can’t go to the movies tonight; I’m beat after my 10-hour shift!”
- To Bite the Bullet – To do something that you do not want to do
“It’s time to bite the bullet and sell the house. I know you love the location, but you can’t afford it anymore!”
- To Call it a Night – To stop an activity
“We’re not going to finish this project tonight; we might as well call it a night. We can come back to it on Monday.”
- To Add Fuel to the Fire – To make a bad situation worse
“The citizens are already upset with the government, and now they’ve added fuel to the fire by cutting school funding.”
- To Be Broke – To be poor
“I’m broke; I need to get a part-time job!”
Keep a look out for your participant newsletter to learn more American English phrases!