American Phrases,
English Idioms and Expressions

"U" through "Z"

Below on this page you see a partial listing of English idioms and expressions and American phrases beginning with letters 'U' through 'Z'


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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


"U" through "Z" begins here:
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Under scrutiny

Being investigated or watched.

Wan Toe is under scrutiny. They are watching everything he does very carefully.

Similar:
Under surveillance.
Living in a fish bowl.
Under the magnifying glass.

Compare to: Fine-toothed comb.

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Under someone’s thumb

Under someone’s control.

When someone says: Adolpho is under Julia’s thumb, they mean something like:
He’s under her full control.

Similar:
He’s her puppet.
She’s playing him like a violin.
She has him wrapped around her little finger.

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Under the gun

Facing a tight deadline.
Under (a lot of) pressure.

We are under the gun to get the play on the road by next week.

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Under the hat

Secret.

When someone says: Keep it under your hat, they mean something like:
Do it quietly;
Keep it a secret;
Keep it to yourself;
Don’t tell anybody about it; etc.

Also see:
Sweeping something under the rug

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Under the weather

Feeling a little sick.

Q. How are you feeling?
A. I’m feeling a little under the weather.
Q. Is it bad?
A. No, I’ve just got a cold.

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Under water

In trouble.
In financial trouble.
Financially speaking, when you owe more (on a loan) than the property is worth.

Also see:
Upside down situation.

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Under way

In progress.
Being done.

A medical study on the effects of third-hand smoking is under way at this very moment.

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Until the last dog dies

Forever.
For a very long time.

Q. How long are you going to stay here?
A. I will be here until the last dog dies!

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Up for grabs

Available for anyone to take.

Q. By the way, I know that your chief engineer has retired. Is his position filled?
A. No, it’s up for grabs.

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Up for something

Ready, or in line, for something, as in:
This time, I’m up for promotion.
Next year, she’s up for re-election.

Interested in something or doing something, as in:
Are you up for some mountain climbing today?

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Up in arms
Up-in-arms

Ready to fight.
In a fighting mood.
Agitated or outraged about something.

The Republicans were up in arms about the “empathy” remark that Obama made.

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Up on something

Familiar with something.
Having current information about something.

I’m afraid I’m not up on the history of my country!

Also:
Up-to-speed.

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Up one’s sleeve

Something hidden.
A hidden thing ready to be used, maybe like a trick.

What do you have up your sleeve this time?

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Up the ante
Gambling

Adding to the rewards.
Adding to the incentive.
Making it more interesting.

Also:
Sweeten the pot.

Background:
This expression comes from gambling. When you up the ante or sweeten the pot, you’re adding to the amount of the bet, thus making it more interesting by increasing the potential winnings.

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Up to 10 years

Maximum of 10 years.
No more than 10 years, maybe less.

Note:
Other numbers and units are used also.

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Up to date
Up-to-date

Current.
The most recent version.
Including the latest changes.

This report was printed last week and is our most up-to-date document. Feel free to use it in your research.

Compare to:
To date.

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Up to snuff
Up-to-snuff

Acceptable.
At the acceptable level.
Meeting the requirements.

Also:
Up to par.

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Up to speed
Up-to-speed

Current.
Aware of, or familiar with, what’s going on.

Q. Are you up to speed with our computer system?
A. I’ve worked on similar systems, so I’m sure it’ll be okay.
Q. What about the case? Are you up to speed with the case?
A. No, sir, I’ll have to study the case and prepare myself.

Also see:
In touch.
Up to date.

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Up-and-coming

Promising and new.
Showing signs of success.

Q. Why are you interested in helping her?
A. She’s an up-and-coming singer, with potential. If I help her now, she might help ME later!

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Upper hand

Advantage.

When someone says: We have the upper hand in the negotiation, they mean something like:
We have an advantage over them.
We’re in a better position than them.

Q. Do you want to negotiate with Richard?
A. Not really. I have the upper hand here.

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Upside down situation

A money losing operation or business.

We’re losing money on this building. It’s been an upside-down investment for us ever since we bought it!

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Urban legend

A legend that may, or may not, be true. And if true, it may be exaggerated or otherwise distorted. It is also referred to as modern legend or contemporary legend and is different from typical, old legends.

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Using discretion
Origin: Legal

Being diplomatic, discreet, and tactful, and using diplomacy in one’s actions.
Using one’s knowledge, experience, and authority to separate between courses of action, and deciding on the proper one. In other words, using one’s head!

When a warning at the beginning of a television show says: Viewer Discretion Is Advised, it means:
The show may not be suitable for younger viewers. Adults must be ready to make a decision accordingly.

When someone says: This is my plan, but please use discretion, they mean:
Use this information wisely.
Don’t tell the whole world about it!

Also:
Do it discreetly.
Be discreet about it.
Do it with discretion.
Use it with discretion.
Do it at your discretion.

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Using one’s gray cells

Thinking. Using one’s brain.

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Using one’s head
Using one’s brain.

Thinking logically.

A. I hear you’re going back to school again. I’m glad you’re finally using your head!
B. Yeah and I’m getting a headache, too!

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Using one’s judgment
Origin: Legal

Making a decision based on one’s knowledge or experience.

Q. What do you want me to do with these books?
A. Use your judgment. I trust you and I trust your judgment.

Also see:
Judgment call.

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U-turn

A 180 degree turn.
A drastic change of mind.
Making a turn on the street from going in one direction to be able to go in the opposite direction.

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Vantage point

A place or position from which you can see or observe something (very well).

When someone says: From my vantage point, he’s alright, they mean something like: I think he’s okay.

Similar:
If you ask me, ...
The way I see it, ...
In my point of view, ...
From where I’m sitting, ...
As far as I’m concerned, ...

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Vertically challenged

The politically correct way of referring to a short person.
The politically correct way of referring to a person who has difficulty standing up.

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Village fool
Village idiot

An idiot.
A foolish person.

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VIP

This is an abbreviation for: Very Important Person.

Guest of honor.

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Voicing one’s opinion

Telling people what one thinks.

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VP

This is an abbreviation for: Vice President.

Also:
Veep.

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Wait a sec.

Wait.
Wait a minute or wait a second.

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Wait until the dust settles.

Wait until things are clear.
Wait until we know what’s going on.
Wait until we know what we’re doing.

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Waiting for the other shoe to drop

Waiting for something else (bad) to happen.

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Waiting something out

Waiting long enough for something to happen or change or end.

We are waiting out the storm (or the elections or the recession, etc.)

The two brothers are waiting out their 84-year-old rich uncle’s death, could mean: They are waiting until he dies so that they may get his money!

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Wake up, and smell the coffee!

This expression-like sentence could have any of the following meanings:
You’re falling behind.
You don’t know what’s going on.
Pay attention to what’s happening.
What are you doing? Do something.
Things are changing, and you’re not paying attention.

A. My brother still trusts his ex-wife.
B. Really?! He needs to wake up, and smell the coffee!

Also:
Get with it!
Get with the program!

And, on a more humorous note:
Wake up, and smell the cappuccino!

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Waking up on the wrong side of the bed

Being moody, cranky, or impatient.

When someone says: She probably woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, they mean something like: She’s not in a good mood today.

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Walk the walk; don’t just talk the talk.

Deliver, don’t just promise.
Do the things that you tell others to do.
Don’t just tell other people to do things but then do something else yourself.

When someone says: We walk the walk; we don’t just talk the talk, they mean:
We don’t just talk! We do what we say to do.

Also:
Don’t be a hypocrite.

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Walking a fine line
Walking a thin line

Being careful about one’s actions or statements in sensitive situations.

If you’re in a situation where you have to be real careful about what you’re saying or doing, you must walk a fine line.

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Walking on eggshells

Being careful with what you’re saying.
Being very careful in a sensitive or dangerous situation.

When someone says: I’m walking on eggshells with my wife, it means:
I have to be very careful about what I say or do around my wife, because she’s very sensitive.

Also see:
On thin ice.

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Walking someone through something

Explaining things.
Telling someone, or showing them, how something is done.

Don’t worry, I’ll walk you through the instructions and show you how to assemble this ridiculous machine!

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Walking the line

Following the rules.

Q. Why did Johnny Cash walk the line for June Carter?
A. Because he loved her!

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Wall Street

The financial community in general.
The financial capital of the United States.
Where the New York Stock Exchange is located.
A street in New York where the headquarters of major financial institutes are located.

Compare to:
Main Street.

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Wanna

This is a slang abbreviation for: Want to.

If someone says: We wanna take it easy today, they mean: We want to take it easy today.

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Waste not, want not.

If you don’t waste things, you won’t need more.
If you don’t need it, don’t buy it, because then you won’t waste it.

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Water under the bridge

Things that have already happened.
Things in the past that shouldn’t really matter.

A. I don’t want to see them again. They didn’t treat me right at school.
B. But it’s been so long. It’s all water under the bridge at this point. Let’s go to the reunion.

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Water-cooler talk

Office gossip.
Things about the company that the employees would talk about.

More credibility is generally given to printed material than to “water-cooler gossip.”

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Watered down
Watered-down

Something that’s made to look less serious, less detailed, less costly, etc., than the actual thing.
Something that has been diluted so that it’s not as strong as it would be at full strength, such as a watered-down drink.

I’m serving him watered-down drinks because he gets drunk easily!

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Waving the white flag
Origin: Military

Being open to negotiation.
Wanting to hold peace talks.
Showing a willingness to surrender.

A. I think you guys should try to come to a compromise.
B. Yes, that’s exactly why I’m waving the white flag by inviting you here to be a mediator.

Also:
A peace offering.

Compare to:
Extending an olive branch.

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Way back when

Long time ago.

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We deliver.
We can deliver.

We can do it.
If we say we’ll do it, we’ll do it.

A. When we signed up with you, we weren’t sure you’d provide good service.
B. Well, as you can see, we deliver!

Also:
We come through, or we keep our word.

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We’re outta here!

Let’s leave.
We are done.
It’s no use anymore.
That’s it, we’re leaving.
That does it, we can’t take it anymore.

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Wearing something on one’s sleeve

Being transparent (truthful, etc.,) about something.
Not being good at hiding one’s emotions.

She wears her heart on her sleeve, means:
She’s open about being emotionally sensitive!

They wore their racism on their sleeve, means:
They were not shy about being racist.

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Wearing thin

Weakening.
Becoming less effective.

Your excuses are wearing thin. They’re not working on me any more.

Also:
Running out of patience.

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Weighing in

Expressing one’s opinion, as in:
The vice president hasn’t weighed in on the situation yet.

Having or exerting influence, as in:
The vocal mob was eager to weigh in on the election results.

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Well, I’ll be!

An expression of surprise.

A. They were talking about a talking dog on television.
B. A talking dog? Well, I’ll be! What’s next, a flying pig?

Also:
I’ll be damned!
What do you know!
Well, I’ll be damned!
Who would’ve guessed!
Well, what do you know!

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Well-to-do

Wealthy.

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Wet behind the ears

Innocent.
Inexperienced.

He’s young and a little wet behind the ears.

Background:
This expression apparently comes from the fact that babies, when they are born, are wet all over. The area behind the ears dries last, by which time some time has passed, supposedly allowing for maturity and experience.

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What did that get you?

How did that help you?
What did it do for you?
What did you accomplish?

Also:
Where did that get you?

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What do you make of it?

Can you figure it out?
What is the meaning of it?
What do you think it means?

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What gives?

What is it?
What’s up?
What’s cooking?
What’s happening?
What do you want?

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What goes around comes around.

You get what you deserve depending on how you behave, good OR bad. For example, if you’re nice to people, nice things will, in turn, happen to you.

Also:
You reap what you sow.

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What is your angle?

This has positive OR negative connotation and it means:
What do you think?
What’s in it for you?
What’s your point of view?
What are you trying to do?

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What it is!

How are things?
What’s going on?

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What possessed you to say that?

Why did you say that?
What made you say that?

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What seems to be the problem?

What is the matter?
What are you worried about?
What are you thinking about?

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What’s done is done.

It’s too late.
Let’s move on.
Let’s forget about it and start from the beginning.

Also:
Bury the hatchet.
Let’s put it behind us.
Let bygones be bygones.
It’s water under the bridge.

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What’s eating you?

What’s wrong?
What’s the matter?
What’s bothering you?

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What’s on your mind?

What do you want?
What are you talking about?
What are you thinking about?

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What’s the dealio?

What’s the deal?
What’s going on?
What do you want?

Also:
What’s up?
What’s the word?

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What’s the idea?

What are you thinking?
What are you trying to do?

Q. I see that you parked your car in the manager’s spot. What’s the idea?
A. I heard he’s going to be away for a while, so why not?

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What’s the verdict?
Origin: Legal

What’s the penalty?
What’s the outcome?
What do you suggest?
How do you feel about it?
What should we do about it?

Similar:
What’s the word?
What’s your take on this?

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What’s up with that?

What’s wrong?
Why did that happen?
What’s wrong with that?
Why was this said or done?
What’s the matter with that?

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What’s your pleasure?

What would you like?
What would you like to do?

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What’s your point?

What are you trying to say?

Also see:
Get to the point.

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What’s your story?

What’s your life story?
What are you all about?
What’s your explanation?
What do you want to tell me?
What’s your side of the story?

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Whatchamacallit?

This word is used in place of a word that the speaker doesn’t know or doesn’t remember. It can mean any of the following:
What is it called?
What is its name?
What do they call that?

A. I met this guy in charge of the, whatchamacallit, the new project!?
B. I know what you mean. Go ahead. Tell me what you guys talked about.

Interesting point:
Although people sometimes don’t remember certain words while they’re speaking, they always remember to say whatchamacallit!

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Wheels are coming off the wagon.

The system is about to break down.
The situation is getting out of control.

Q. Do you think the government is losing control of the economy?
A. Definitely, to the point that the wheels are coming off the wagon!

Also:
Wheels falling off the wagon.

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When hell freezes over!

Never!

Q. When will you buy me a new car?
A. When hell freezes over!

Also:
When pigs fly!
Not in your lifetime!
It’ll be a cold day in hell before that happens!

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When in Rome, do as the Romans do.

Follow the local customs.
Follow the rules, wherever you are.

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When push comes to shove

When things get really bad.
When you have no other choice.
When it becomes absolutely necessary.

When push comes to shove, I’ll tell them what I really think of them!

Also:
When it comes right down to it.

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When the cat is away, the mice will play.

No authority means no order.
When there’s no control, there will be chaos.

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When the chips are down

When nothing seems to be working.
When one is under a lot of pressure.
When the situation is difficult or dangerous.
When the chips were down, she always did the right thing.
When the chips are down, you can always count on your real friends.

In gambling: When the chips are down, you’re losing!

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Where do you come off saying things like this?

Why do you say things like this?
What gives you the right to say things like this?

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Where in the world is it?

Where is it?

The following are similar but are not polite:
Where the hell is it?
Where is the damn thing?
For God’s sake, where is it?

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Where one gets off the train

Where disagreements begin or become too much.

This is where I get off the train, could mean:
I don’t agree with you any more.
This is where I go my separate way.
I’m not cooperating with you any longer.

Related:
People are off the bus now.

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Where the rubber meets the road!

The important thing.
The thing that counts.

Q. Do you think you’re going to win the election? You’re ahead in all of the polls!
A. I know, but the voting next week is where the rubber will meet the road.

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Whiling away the time

Passing the time.

To while away the time, the young man talks of his childhood.

Also see:
Killing time.

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Whisky breath

Drunk.
One whose breath smells like whisky.

Similarly:
Dog breath.
Turtle neck.
Potato head.

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Whistle-stop series

A series of short stops and meetings at a number of locations.

The senator is going to South America for a whistle-stop series of meetings with South American leaders.

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Whistling Dixie

Being happy, carefree.
Talking or thinking a little too positively, making things seem better than they are in reality.

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White elephant

A big burden.
A valuable (but expensive to maintain) item that nobody wants, or can afford, to keep.
A company or property that is so costly to maintain that it is impossible to make a profit.

Also see:
Albatross around one’s neck.

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White knuckler

Really scary.
A tense and nervous person.

Q. How was your flight on the small plane?
A. It was a white knuckler! The turbulence was so bad that I thought I was going to die!

Background:
When people are scared, they sometimes grab something (edge of the seat, the railing, someone’s hand, etc.) very hard. Now, if they’re really scared, they will grab it so tightly that their knuckles will turn white!

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White trash
White trailer trash

White (Caucasian), lower class, low-income, generally uneducated people. (An insult. Not a nice thing to say.)

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Who cares?

I don’t care.

Also:
Whatever.
See if I care.
The hell with it.
I don’t give a hoot.
I don’t give a care.
I couldn’t care less.
I don’t give a damn.
Who gives a damn?
I don’t give a rat’s ass.

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Whole nine yards

The whole thing.
All of something.

Our vendor got us a box suite at the baseball game! It didn’t just give us the best seats in the stadium. It also included free parking, a private living room, kitchen, bathroom, and lots of food; the whole nine yards!

Also:
The whole shebang.
The whole enchilada.

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Why don’t you?

What sounds like a question is actually an invitation or an order to do something, as given in the examples below:
Why don’t you say it? means: Say it!
Why don’t you write about it? means: Write about it!
Why don’t you tell me about it? means: Tell me all about it!
Why don’t you come over and sit next to me? means: Sit next to me.

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Why, of course!

This is simply a more emphatic and sympathetic way of saying: Of course!

Q. Shall I tell you what I did today?
A. Why, of course!

Similar:
Why, no!
Why, yes!

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Wild goose chase

A fake task.
A task that (we know) will not produce any results.
Sending someone to look for something that either doesn’t exist or isn’t where they say it is.

When someone says: I sent him on a wild goose chase, they mean something like:
I got rid of him. I sent him in the wrong direction.

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Will fly

Will work.

If you say: This plan will fly, you mean:
It will work.

If you say: This plan will fly with her, you mean:
She will like it.
She will agree with it.

Opposite:
Won’t fly.

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Windy City

This is a nickname for the City of Chicago.

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Winging it

Doing something without preparation.
Doing something and seeing how it works.
Doing something without weighing the consequences.

I didn’t have time to study for my test last night, so now I’m just going to have to wing it and hope I pass.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wingman

Best friend, sidekick.
A person assisting others (including friends) to make connection with a potential love interest, when they can’t do it easily on their own.

I’m too uncomfortable approaching a woman that I’m interested in. So, I’ve asked “Subtle Raul” to be my wingman!

Background:
This word has its roots in aviation. When several airplanes are flying in formation, the pilot flying behind the lead pilot is the lead pilot’s wingman and will take over if something happens to the lead pilot.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Win-lose (situation)

A situation where one side wins, one side loses.

Compare to:
Lose-lose or win-win.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Win-win (situation)

A situation where both sides win.

Compare to:
Lose-lose or win-lose.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wise guy
Wise-guy

A know-it-all.
A person who is very sure of himself, and pushes his own ideas.

So he’s a wise guy. He thinks he knows everything, and makes sure that everyone knows it.

Another meaning:
A gangster.
Connected to organized crime.

Do you see those guys over there? You’d better be careful. They’re “wise guys,” if you know what I mean!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

With a vengeance

With intensity.
She came back with a vengeance from near defeat, overcame her opponent, and won the game.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

With all due respect

With all of the respect that is deserved.

When someone says: With all due respect, sir, that’s not what you said the other day, they mean something like:
You know I respect you, but why are you lying?

Note:
This is an expression that you can use when you want to politely disagree with someone. However, in a way, sometimes it’s another way of saying that you really have NO RESPECT for the other person! So, be careful about when, how, and to whom you say it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Within earshot

Very close.
Close enough to hear (it).

Q. Were you close to where they were arguing?
A. Yes. I was within earshot and heard the whole thing

Opposite:
Out of earshot.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Within striking distance
Military

Close.
Close enough to strike, hit, touch, etc.

We were told not to start firing unless the enemy was within striking distance.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Without missing a beat

Without hesitating.
Responding to something without showing surprise or shock.

Compare to:
Missing a beat.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wonder years

The time of life for younger people when things are still special, like going to an amusement park.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wooden nickels

Fake money.
Fake anything.

When someone says: Don’t take any wooden nickels, they mean:
Be careful;
Don’t trust everybody;
Don’t get taken or fooled;
Be careful in your dealings with others; etc.

Background:
In the olden days, wooden nickels were sometimes issued by businesses as a promotion and didn’t have a universally accepted monetary value. The warning above has now become an expression.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Work in progress
Work-in-progress

Work or a project that has been started but not finished yet.
Work or a project that has taken a long time and is still not finished. (Sarcastic.)

Q. Did your son get his degree?
A. Oh, that’s a work-in-progress. I don’t think he’ll ever get it!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Working one’s butt off

Working very hard.

Q. Have you been to the movies lately?
A. No, I don’t have time. I’ve bee working my butt off, even on the weekends!

Also:
Working one’s tail off.
Working one’s fingers to the bone.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Working to someone’s advantage

Being advantageous to someone.

This can only work to HER advantage, means:
It won’t hurt HER.
It can only be good for HER.
It won’t help US, it’ll help HER.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Worth a mint

Valuable.
Worth a lot of money.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Worth noting

Good to take notice.
Good to pay attention to.
When someone says: The results of our latest study are worth noting, they mean something like: It’s worthwhile to look at these results. You might even learn something!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Would just as soon

Would prefer.
Would rather.

Q. Would you like to go to the party with us later?
A. No, I have to be back early. I’d just as soon go now.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wouldn’t put anything past someone

This term implies a negative connotation about the person’s character.

When someone says: I wouldn’t put cheating past her, they mean something like:
She’s capable of cheating.
If she’s caught cheating, I won’t be surprised.

When someone says: I wouldn’t put anything past your friend, they mean something like:
He might do anything.
You never know what he would do!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wrapping one’s head around something
Wrapping one’s mind around something

Understanding (feeling, comprehending, etc.,) the issue.

Also:
Getting one’s arms around something.

She can’t even get her arms around our problems. How can you expect her to make good decisions on our behalf?

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Writing on the wall

Warning.
Message of doom.
Some indication of things to come.
The fate of something is already determined.

Q. Why are you selling your stocks?
A. The stocks will be losing even more value. I can see the (hand) writing on the wall.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Writing one’s own ticket

Letting one decide what one wants to do per one’s own desire.

If someone is able to write their own ticket, it usually means that they are exceptionally gifted, smart, connected to influential people, financially secure, etc., and have many options for their life and future.

When someone says: Write your own ticket, they mean something like:
Tell me what you want to do.
Tell me how much you want, and I’ll go along.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wrong end of the stick

I got the wrong end of the stick, could mean:
I was cheated.
I got a bad deal.
I was put at a disadvantage.
I had to do an undesirable task.
I had to do the things I hated to do.

Also:
The raw end of the deal.
The short end of the stick.
The crummy end of the stick.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Wrong side of the tracks

The poor, crime-ridden part of a town or community.

Compare to:
Other side of the tracks.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

“X” dollars’ worth

Thirty dollars’ worth of something, means: A quantity of something that costs thirty dollars.

Any quantity, and any monetary system could be used, as in:

Q. How much gas do you want?
A. Ten dinars worth. (Ten dinars worth of gas.)

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Yanking someone’s chain

Teasing someone.
Irritating someone.
Upsetting someone.
Stringing someone along.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Yet to happen

When someone says: It has yet to rain, it means: It hasn’t rained yet.
When someone says: I have yet to see her, it means: I haven’t seen her yet.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You are kidding!

Really?
Are you sure?
Are you serious?
Are you kidding me?

Also:
You must be joking!
You must be kidding!
You’ve got to be kidding me!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You are overreacting!

Take it easy.
You shouldn’t get so upset.
It’s not as bad as you think.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You bet!

This is a nice thing you might say if someone says Thank you, or if someone asks you to do something. It is equivalent to saying:
No problem.
My pleasure.
No, thank YOU.
Don’t mention it.
You’re welcome.

Also:
Sure thing!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can eat off this floor!

This is a very clean floor!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can see daylight through it.

It’s a very thin material.
It has a big crack (or hole) in it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can take it to the bank.

It’s good.
You can trust it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can’t be serious!

See: You are kidding!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can’t get blood out of a turnip.

You can’t get money from a person who doesn’t have money.

Also:
You can’t get blood out of a rock.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You can’t judge a book by its cover.

Don’t make decisions about a person based on their appearance alone.

Compare to:
Still waters run deep.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You could play marbles with his eyeballs!

He was very surprised.
He was so surprised that his eyeballs were sticking out enough to play marbles with! (Not a pretty picture!)

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You do the math.

Figure it out.
See for yourself.
You have the facts. Think about it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You don’t know the half of it!

You don’t know much about it.
You only know a small part of it.
You don’t know anything about it.

Other fractions are sometimes used also, as in:
You don’t know one tenth of it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You don’t say!

See: You are kidding!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You don’t wanna know!
You don’t want to know!

I don’t want to tell you.
I don’t feel like telling you.
I don’t think you want to know.
I think it’s better if you don’t know.
You might become upset if you know.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You got it!

Exactly.
That’s it.
That’s correct.
You have the right idea.

Also:
Right on.
Bull’s eye.
You’ve got it.
There you go.
That’s my girl. That’s my boy.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You have to dance with the one who brought you.

Be loyal.
They helped you, now you must help them.

Also see:
Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You know what you can do with that?
You want me to tell you what you can do with that?

It’s not polite to ask either one of these rhetorical questions which imply:
Get out of here!
I don’t like your offer!
Take it, and get out of here!

Similar and also not polite:
Put it where the sun don’t shine!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You think?

This is a sarcastic way of saying: Really?

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You want to bet?

Are you sure?
Are you sure enough to bet on it?

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’d better be right.

I hope you are right.
It’ll be better for you if you’re right.
If you’re not right you’ll be in trouble.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’re being watched.

Be careful.
You are under surveillance.

Also:
I’m watching you. I’ll be watching you.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’re killing me.

This is too much.
I can’t take it any more.
I can’t do this any more.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’re on.

Let’s do it.
Okay, I accept.
I accept your challenge.
I accept what you’re saying.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’re the man!

You’re the boss.
You’re the important one.
You’re the one everybody’s talking about.
You’re the person people should see to get things done.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’ve been had.

They lied to you.
You have been cheated.

Also:
You have been scammed.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You’d do well to listen.

It’s best if you listen.
The best thing you can do is to listen.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Your money is no good here!

It’s on the house.
You’re my (our) guest.
You don’t need to pay.

Q. It was good seeing you again. By the way, how much do I owe you for the tickets?
A. Oh, forget it. Your money is no good here!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Yours truly

I.
Me.
Myself.

Every time there’s a problem they start blaming yours truly! Am I the only one making mistakes?

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Zeroing in on

Focusing on someone or something.
Concentrating on someone or something.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Zip it!

Shut up.
Don’t talk.
Don’t say a word.

Also:
Keep your trap shut.
Keep your mouth shut.


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