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					        SLANG

SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS
         &
 IDOMATIC LANGUAGE

    Prepared by:
 Test Control Office
          JAF Language Institute.
                  July 2004
                                       v.727
Ser       Idiom           Meaning        Notes
 1    ABC’s          The basics
 2    About face     Reverse decision
 3    About right Something that is
                     basically correct
4     Abreast of the Be informed, know
      situation      what is happening
                      2
5 Absent-         Forgetful
  minded
6 Ace            Do extremely well
7 Ace in the     Something/someone
  hole           kept as a surprise
                 until     the    right
                 situation
8 Abreast of the Know        what    is
  situation      happening
9 Across the     Including everyone
  board          or all things
                     3
10 Act of God    A            natural
                 occurrence
11 After one’s Liking       someone
   own heart     because of similar
                 interests
12 A head of the Have a gain or a
   game          profit
13 All along     From the beginning
14 All ears      Listening carefully
15 All the rage Popular
16 Ammo          Ammunition
                    4
17 Apple of        To think highly of
   one’s eye       someone/something
18 Arm and leg     Very expensive
19 Around the      24 hours
   clock
20 Asleep at the   Not alert to an
   wheel           opportunity
21 Assess          Evaluate, analyze
22 At a loss       At a financial loss,
                   to be uncertain, not
                   knowing what to
                     5
                say
23 At a premium Needed very much,
                expensive
24 At all costs By      any      way
                necessary,
                regardless of the
                effort
25 At large     Free after an escape
26 At           In a fight, in a
   loggerheads quarrel
27 At one’s     Be easily available
                   6
   fingertips
28 At zero hour Critical time
29 Average Joe A person showing
                usual or ordinary
                behavior
30 Awkward age Early adolescence
                   B
31 Babes in the Innocent       and
   wood         inexperienced
                person
32 Back-breaker Difficult job
                  7
33 Back off     Stop annoying or
                bothering
34 Back-seat    Automobile
   driver       passenger      who
                annoys the driver
                by telling him how
                to drive
35 Back-stabber One who lies or
                does something to
                hurt a friend
36 Bail out     Escape from a plane
                   8
                 that is about to
                 crash
37 Back talk     A rude reply
38 Back to the   Be in a trap with no
   wall          way to escape; in
                 bad trouble
39 Backtrack     Return over the
                 same way or route
40 Bad blood     Hatred      or bad
                 feelings within an
                 interpersonal
                   9
                  relationship
41   Bad hair day A day in which
                  nothing seems to be
                  going right
42   Bad mouth    To talk badly about
                  something        or
                  someone
43   Bag          Get or capture
44   Baker’s      Thirteen
     dozen
45   Ball park    A guess as to the
                    10
   figure        correct amount
46 Bang (bang    Something that is a
   out)          fun, joy
47 Bank on       Depend on
48 Barfly        Someone who often
                 goes to clubs and
                 bars
49 Bark up the   To look for a
   wrong tree    solution in the
                 wrong place
50 Basket case   Mentally         or
                   11
                 emotionally weak.
                 Unable to take care
                 of himself
51 Bat an eye    Show emotion or
                 interest
52 Batten down Cover and fasten
                 down
53 Battle tested Someone/something
                 that     has    been
                 proven valuable
54 Bawl out      To severely criticize
                    12
                  someone
55   BCD          Bad          conduct
                  discharge
56   BDU          Battle dress uniform
57   Bear in mind Remember
58   Beat a dead Want to argue about
     horse        something that has
                  already         been
                  decided
59   Beat around Delay telling the
     the bush     truth or main issue
                     13
60 Beat one’s     Work very hard
   brains out
61 Beat it        Leave immediately
62 Beat the       To     search    for
   bushes         something in a
                  complete way
63 Beats me       Don’t understand
                  something
64 Bed of roses   A place of beauty,
                  ease and comfort
65 Beef up        Give more strength,
                    14
                 to reinforce
66 Behind bars   In prison
67 Behind the    In an unpleasant
   eight ball    situation        or
                 awkward position
68 Belay         Ignore
69 Bellyache     Complain
70 Bend over     Try very hard
   backwards
71 Bent out of   Angry or insulted
   shape
                   15
72 Bet your      Be absolutely sure
   bottom dollar of something
73 Better half   Someone’s husband
                 or wife
74 Big shot      An        important
                 person
75 big wheel     An        important
                 person
76 Bigwig        An        important
                 person
78 Big stick     Powerful force
                   16
79 Bird dog        Follow closely
80 Bite the bullet To continue in a
                   difficult situation
81 Blabbermouth A very talkative
                   person
82 Black and       Bruised
   blue
83 Black out       Having no lights for
                   security reasons
84 Blind date      A first date between
                   two persons who
                     17
                  have never met
                  before
85   Blitz        Attack and defeat
86   Blow by blow With much detail
87   Blow one’s Become very angry
     cool
88   Blow one’s Destroy or make
     cover        unknown       one’s
                  secret
89   Blow one’s Get very mad
     stack or top
                    18
90 Blow            Destroy something
   something
91 Blow            Don’t finish or do
   something off   something
92 Blow the        Tell      something
   whistle on      against someone
   someone
93 Blow up         Have an angry
                   outburst
94 Blue blood      Having the qualities
                   of a noble birth
                     19
95 Blue-collar    An industrial    or
   worker         factory worker
96 Bog down       Slow or stop
97 Bomb           To fail
   something
98 Boom box       A portable cassette
                  /CD player usually
                  in a large size
99 Born with a    Born rich
   silver spoon
   in one’s
                    20
    mouth
100 Bottom line   The most important
                  point
101 Bottom dollar Last dollar
102 Bounce        Discuss and think
    around        about an idea
103 Bound for     Going to
104 Bowl along Move freely
105 Bowl over     Defeat       without
                  much effort
106 Box in        Shut in or keep in;
                     21
                   to surround
107 Branch out     Expand
108 Break a leg    Wish good luck
109 Break one’s    Try very hard
    neck
110 Break out     Escape
111 Break the ice Reduce            the
                  nervousness        or
                  formality of a social
                  situation    through
                  friendly
                     22
                   conversation
112   Break up     Dismiss a unit or
                   organization/ end or
                   finish
113   Breakdown Collapse/ analysis
                   /fail to operate or
                   function
114   Breathe down To follow closely in
      one’s neck   pursuit/      watch
                   someone closely
115   Brick wall   Strong obstacle
                      23
116 Bring about     Cause to happen
117 Bring out a     Stress a certain
    point           piece of information
118 Bring to mind   Remind
119 Bring up        Take      care    of
                    children / introduce
                    a subject
120 Brush a side    Ignore
121 Brush up on     Review
    something
122 Buck            Go     against   or
                      24
                oppose
123 Bucket of   A complicated or
    worms       unclear situation
124 Buff        Muscular
125 Bug         a. Bother/ b. put an
                audio          device
                somewhere         for
                unauthorized
                listening . c. defect
                or problem,
126 Build up    Increase forces or
                  25
                  number of supply or
                  equipment
127 Bull          Information that is
                  not      true      or
                  believable
128 Bull-headed   Stubborn
129 Bump into     Meet someone
130 Burn out      Become exhausted
131 Burn up the   Drive a car very fast
    road
132 Burst into    Suddenly begin to
                    26
    flames         burn violently
133 Burst into     Suddenly begin to
    tears          cry
134 Busybody       One who looks into
                   other       people’s
                   private business
135   Butt in      Interrupt
136   Button up    Finish
137   Buzz off     Go away and stop
                   annoying someone
138   By all means Certainly
                      27
139 By and large     In general
140 By hook or       By any available
    by crook         way
141 By the skin of   By        a     very
    one’s teeth      little/barely
                         C
142   Call it a day Quit for the day
143   Call off       Cancel, stop or quit
144   call the shots Give direction
145   Carry the ball Take               the
                     responsibility
                       28
146 “cat got your The inability to talk
    tongue        freely because of
                  shyness
147 Catch cold    Become sick with a
                  cold
148 Catch on      Understand
149 Catch one’s Get one’s attention
    eye
150 Cave in       fall down to weaken
                  and be force to
                  surrender
                    29
151 Crumbs       Small pieces of food
152 Consent      Approval, agreement
153 Chip in      To put one's share of
                 money
154 Crumble      Fall into pieces
155 Coarse       Not smooth, rough
156 Core         Center of anything
157 Cheap shot   A mean action or
                 insult
158 Check it out Look into an issue
159 Check up on To investigate or
                    30
                 make       sure    of
                 something
160 Chew out     Reprimand or scold
161 Chew the fat Talk casually about
                 nothing important
162 Chicken-     Person who is scared
    hearted      of others/things
163 Chill out    Relax
164 Chin up      Stop being sad, get
                 happy
165 Chip in      Contribute
                    31
166   Choke off    Bring to a stop
167   Chow down    Eat
168   Chuck out    Throw a way
169   Clean –cut   Neat,         specific,
                   definite
170 Clear cut      Definite, without any
                   uncertainty
171 Clear up       Explain or solve
172 Close call     Narrow escape
173 Cook up        Create, plan and
                   organize, invent
                     32
174 Cop out      Avoid trouble and
                 responsibility
175 Copy cat     A      person    who
                 imitates      someone
                 else’s manner, style
                 or behavior
176 Couch potato Someone who spends
                 too     much     time
                 watching TV and not
                 exercising
177 Count        Include someone
                    33
      someone in
178   Count            Exclude someone
      someone out
179   Count on         Depend, rely on
180   Cover a lot of   Move rapidly
      ground
181   Crack a joke     Tell a funny story
182   Crackdown        To enforce the rules
                       or laws more strictly
                       than in the past
183 Crack up           Have a physical or
                         34
                   mental collapse
184   Crank up     Start
185   Crash        Fall asleep
186   Crash course A short course that
                   gives a lot of
                   information in a very
                   short time
187   Crazy about Have a very strong
                   interest or liking in
                   someone            or
                   something
                      35
188 Creep         An unpleasant or bad
                  person
189 Crocodile     False tears, pretended
    tears         grief
190 Cranky        Angry              and
                  complaining
191 Cross ones    Hope for good luck
    fingers
192 Crystal clear Without        doubt,
                  understandable
193 Cut and dry Very       clear   and
                    36
                 understandable
194 Cut it out   Stop it`
195 Cut to the   Reduce      to   a
    bone         minimum
                    D
196
197 Day by day   Gradually
198 durable      sturdy
199 Dead duck    In a very bad
                 situation
200 Dig up       Discover or find
                   37
201 Different         Everyone            has
    strokes for       different interests and
    different folks   likes
202 Dirty work        Very hard, tiring
                      work
203 Distorted         Garbled
204 Doggy bag          A plastic or paper
                      bag given to a
                      restaurant customer
                      to take home uneaten
                      food
                        38
205 Don’t count     Unwisely depending
    your chickens   on making a gain or
    before they     profit before you
    hatch           have it
206 Don’t cry       Complain or cry
    over spilled    about something that
    milk            has already happened
207 Double cross    Cheat someone
208 Down and out    Poor and hopeless
209 Down to         Begin     to    work
    business        seriously
                      39
210 Down to earth Be      practical    or
                  sensible
211 Drag          Slow down, hold
                  back
212 Draw the line Set a limit
213 Dressed to    Be wearing one's best
    kill          or finest clothes
214 Drive         Cause someone to
    someone mad become          violently
                  angry or insane
215 Drop out o    Discontinue attending
                     40
216 Drop          Write       a   short
    someone a     note/letter
    line
217 Dry run       Rehearsal
218 Dutch treat   Each pays one's own
                  way
                     E
219 Easy going    Relaxed
220 Egghead       Intelligent person
221 Eyewash       Information used to
                  hide the truth
                    41
                    F
222 Face the      Meet the blame, face
    music         a difficult situation
                  with courage
223 Fall a part   Become
                  disorganized,
                  collapse
224 Far-fetched   Exaggerated
225 Fed up        Be disgusted
226 Feel like a   Be in the best of
    million       health and spirit
                    42
    dollars
227 Fender-        AN automobile
    bender         accident
228 Few and far    Not many, few
    between
229 Fill the gap   Meet a need, make
                   complete
230 First rate     top quality
231 Fishy          Strange and
                   suspicious
232 Fervent        Intense, impassioned
                     43
233 Fade           Lose the original
                   color
234 Flack jacket   A jacket that has
                   metal plates for
                   protection against
                   flack
235 Flap           A confused situation,
                   a crisis, a decisive
                   event
236 Flat broke     Having no money
237 Follow suit    Follow the example
                     44
                    of another
238   For good      Forever             ,
                    permanently
239   For the birds Worthless,
                    unacceptable,
                    unsatisfactory
240   Foul up       Ruin or spoil
241   From A to Z From beginning to
                    end
242   Full blast    Go at full capacity
                     G
                      45
243 Get after    Reprimand
    someone
244 Get ahead of Do better than ,
                 progress more rapidly
                 than
245 Get behind   To be late
246 Get by       To      succeed      or
                 manage
247 Get going    Start or begin
248 Get out of   Not to be in control
    hand
                     46
249 Get over     To recover from
                 something
250 Get          Explain or make clear
    something
    across
251 Get          To complete or finish
    something    something
    over
252 Give a big   Give an enthusiastic
    hand         applause, help
253 Give         To argue with or
                   47
    someone a     criticize someone
    hard time
254 Give the      give approval to
    green light   continue something
255 Go a long     Cooperate, have no
    with          objection,     agree,
                  follow
256 Go between    A mediator
    "n"
257 Go bad        Spoil
258 Go for it     Accept a challenge
                    48
259 Go off        Be fired or explode,
                  depart or leave
260   Go through Complete
261   Go with the Agree to the way
      flow        things are
262   Gold brick  Lazy person
263   Green thumb Ability     to  make
                  things grow
264   Grounded    Not permitted to fly
265   Go ahead    Permission or signal
                  to continue
                     49
                    H
266 Hack it      Pass , be able to
                 perform satisfactorily
267 Half-hearted Without enthusiasm
268 Hang around Stay close by, wait
269 Hang onto    Keep
270 Hang out     Spend time with
271 Hardhearted Stubborn
272 Have a big   One who says too
    mouth        much, , one who tells
                 others         private
                    50
                     information
273   Hover          Stay suspended in the
                     air
274   Hinge          A metal device with 2
                     parts that act like a
                     joint
275   Heart of gold Be very kind,
276   High and low Everywhere
277   Hit the bull's Get a desired result
      eye
278   Hit the road Leave, go
                       51
279 Hit the nail   Do or say the correct
    on the head    thing
280 Hold one's     Be calm or quiet
    horses
281 Horse around   Be engaged in rough
                   fun, not be serious
282 Hot line       Emergency telephone
283 Hot shot       A very gifted and
                   successful person
                      I
284 "If the shoe    Admit the truth
                     52
    fits, wear it
285 In a tight spot In      trouble       or
                    difficulty
286 In cold blood To kill or murder
                    without feeling , in a
                    cruel way
287 Impediment obstacle
289 In high gear Full activity, top
                    speed
290 In hot water In trouble
291 In the long run In the final result, in
                       53
                      the end
292   It beats me     It makes no sense to
                      me
293   It' water under Something happened
      the bridge      in the past and
                      cannot be changed
                        J-K
294   Jet jockey       A jet aircraft pilot
295   Jump to         Make a fast decision
      conclusion      before               the
                      information            is
                         54
                   complete
296 Keep an eye    Watch carefully and
    on             regularly
297 Keep one's     Hope for the best
    fingers
    crossed
298 Knock it off   Stop saying or doing
                   something
299 Knockout        A very attractive
                   person or thing
300 Know-how       Ability or knowledge
                    55
                     to do something
                        L
301   Ladies' man A man who tries to
                     please and interest
                     women
302   Leak           To secretly give
                     information in an
                     unauthorized way
303   Learn by heart Memorize
304   Learn the hard Learn by making a
      way            mistake
                      56
305 Lend a hand       Help or aid
306 Lend an ear       Listen to someone
307 Let bygones       Forget            past
    be bygones        differences
308 Let go            Release
309 Let the cat out   Reveal     a    secret
    of the bag        unintentionally
310 Like a bat out    Quickly or very fast
    of hell
311 Like a fish       Helpless
    out of water
                        57
312 Little by little Gradually , step by
                     step
313 Letup            Relief
314 Look a gift      To find fault with
    horse in the     something when it is
    mouth            freely offered
315 Look after       Take care of
316 Look before Use caution before
    you leap         advancing
317 Look sharp       Be alert, look good
318 Lose face        Lose dignity
                     58
319 Lose one's   Lose control of
    grip
320 Lose one's   Become crazy
    mind
321 Lose ones    Get very angry
    temper
322 Lost cause   Something which has
                 no      chance   of
                 succeeding
323 Loudmouth     Foolish , noisy
                 person
                   59
324 Lousy            Something/someone
                     that's very bad
325   Lucky dog      A      very fortunate
                     person
                       M
326   Maiden name A woman's name
                     before marriage, her
                     family name
327   Matter of life Of vital importance
      and death
328   Mixed up       Bewildered,
                       60
                  confused
329 Money talks   Money      influences
                  people
330 Money to      More money than is
    burn          needed
331 Monkey        Any activity that is
    business      dishonest, illegal or
                  objectionable
                    N
332 Narrow        An escape which
    escape        almost     did    not
                    61
                     happen
333 Nasty            An unpleasant job,
    business         situation , operation -
                     ---etc
334 Neck and         Side by side
    neck
335 Numb             No feeling
336 Nip in the bud   Stop at an early stage
337 No matter        Regardless
338 Now and then     Occasionally
                       O
                       62
339 Odds and ends Small unimportant
                   things
340 Off target     Not correct
341 Off the hook Out of trouble
342 Off the record Not official
343 On cloud nine Experiencing
                   extreme happiness
344 On the blink Not          functioning
                   properly
345 On the spot    In     difficulty   or
                   trouble
                     63
346 On the tip of    At the point      of
    one's tongue     remembering
347 Once in a blue   Rarely
    moon
348 Out of hand      Out of control
349 Out of order     Broken , not working
350 Out of the       Impossible
    question
351 Outfit           Unit, organization
352 Over and over    Repeatedly
353 Over one's       Difficult          to
                       64
   head           understand
                     P
354 Pain in the   Someone          or
    neck          something extremely
                  disagreeable     or
                  unpleasant
355 Piece of cake Easy , simple
356 Plastic       Credit cards
357 Point of view Personal opinion
358 Perplex       To make someone
                  confused
                   65
359 Periodicals      Newspapers       and
                     magazines
360   Pop up         Happen suddenly
361   Pressed for    Having very little
      time           time
362   Pull strings   To     secretly   use
                     power and influence
                     to get something
363   Put one's foot Say something one
      in one's mouth should not have said
                        R
                       66
364 R and R       Rest and relaxation
365 Rain cats and Rain heavily
    dogs
366 Rain check     A request for an
                  invitation at some
                  future date in place
                  of one you received
                  but unable to accept
367 Raise a stink Complain or protest
                  strongly
368 Refrain       Not to do , avoid
                    67
369 Read between Find     a     hidden
    the lines    meaning
370 Ready-made   Not original
371 Run low on   Have in short supply
                   S
372 Saddled with Responsible for
373 Second hand Previously used
374 Second rate  Of poor quality
375 Set forth    Explain clearly
376 Set free     Release
377 Settle for   Accept , agree
                    68
378 Shift gears   Change a topic
379 Shove off     Leave or depart
380 Sink or swim Fail or succeed in a
                  situation
381 Sit tight     Wait patiently
382 Skin of one's Barely escape or
    teeth         succeed
383 Slip of the   The     mistake   of
    tongue        saying     something
                  one didn’t want or
                  plan to
                    69
384 Smell a rat   Become suspicious
385 Snap decision A decision made
                  quickly         without
                  much thought
386 Sold on       Be convinced of the
                  value of
387 Sooner or     At sometime
    later
388 SOP           Standard operating
                  procedure
389 Sort of       A little , slightly
                     70
390 Spell out        Explain very clearly
391 Stab someone     Betray someone
    in the back
392 Stand on one's   Be independent
    feet
393 Step on the      Increase the speed
    gas
394 Stick around     Remain in the area
395 Skeptical        doubtful
396 Straight from    Directly from a
    the horse's      person or a place
                       71
      mouth          where       something
                     began,      from     a
                     reliable source
397   Surf the net   Go onto the internet
398   Spin around    Turn
399   Starvation     Famine
400   Straddle       See both sides of a
                     problem, to have
                     trouble making a
                     decision
                        T
                       72
401 Tail end        The end part
402 Take cover      Hide
403 Through         Follow the correct
    proper          procedures           ,
    channels        particularly        in
                    reference to the chain
                    of command
404 Tied up         Busy
405 Topsy-turvy     Messy
406 Time is         Not much time is left
    running short
                      73
407 Time to kill   Having extra time
408 Toe the line   Be careful to do what
                   one is supposed to
                   do, obey the rules
409 Too many       Too many people
    chiefs and not giving directions and
    enough         not enough people
    Indians        doing the real job
410 Trade in       Exchange
411 Traffic jam    Slowing or stopping
                   of traffic
                     74
                     U/W
412   Under a cloud Under suspicion
413   Vacillate     Hesitate
414   Wind up       Conclude or finish
415   Wishy-washy Without an opinion
                    of one's own
                    Y-Z +
416   You bet       Certainly, of course
417   Yucky         Very unpleasant
418   Yummy         Very delicious
419   Zero hour     Critical time
                      75
420 Zero in     Locate accurately
421 Jagged      Having an uneven
                pointed edge
422 Orphan      Having no parents
423 Pensive     Having deep and
                serious       thoughts
                often    about     sad
                matters
424 rave        Speak madly or
                shout crazily
425 Notorious   Well known , or
                  76
                famous especially for
                something bad
426 Crude       Rough, unfinished,
                offensive, ill-
                mannered
427 Affiliate   Join with , become a
                part of
428 Glee        Joy , a fleeing of
                delight
429 adjacent    Next , neighboring
430 Malleable   Can be molded
                  77
431 Straddle   Runs through
432 fervent    Strong desire




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