35 The Teacher 1-2 (187) 2022 Technology Tips to get the hang of something - find out how something works, to learn how to do something; a piece of cake - as easy as pie - it’s a cakewalk - something very easy; give an inch take a mile - when someone takes advantage of someone’s niceness; to give/take a rain check - to postpone an invitation for a later date usually to an unspecified time in the future, one more chance, to do an offered activity another time; to have foot-in-mouth disease - to have a habit of saying something inappropriate, to have a consistent habit of saying things at a wrong place and time; to do something by the book - to do something according to the rules or by societal standards, in strict accordance with the rules or the law; to spill the beans - to reveal the secret, to share the secret prematurely/say something that was going to be kept on the down-low; to play with fire - to do something that may pose a great hazard/harm on oneself or people around; hit the hay - go to bed/sleep; to bite off more than you can chew - to take on a task that is going to require much more effort than expected, to overdo yourself; to carve in stone (it is carved/it is not carved in stone) - to make something permanent, often used in a negative form - meaning something is not fixed, not permanent, it is subject to change, it is changeable; in the loop/be out of the loop/keep me in the loop/stay in the loop - to have or not have the special knowledge or power that belongs to a particular group of people. You can tell she’s in the loop. She always knows about policy decisions before the rest of us. I’ve been out of the loop. I didn’t realize Wendy and Bob had got engaged.; to wing it - informal, to do or try to do something without much practice or preparation, to improvise/perform without preparation, to do something on the spot; to have a few screws loose - informal, to talk about someone who is crazy, weird, eccentric or mentally unstable, someone who does weird things, says crazy stuff, etc. It can be used lightly: I think you have some loose screws, buddy. (you are crazy, you have crazy ideas) or in a more serious manner; the last straw - refers to the last event of a series of frustrating or annoying events that makes you realize you have no more patience because of the cumulative effect of small actions; quit (something) cold turkey - to stop doing something abruptly, to quit, to stop a bad habit immediately, right away, usually used to describe an addiction or a harmful habit. After smoking for so long, I should have never tried to quit cold turkey—the withdrawal symptoms are unbearable. I’m so impressed that you quit gambling cold turkey!; a blessing in disguise - an apparent misfortune that eventually has good results, good outcome from an evil situation, an unfortunate event that later leads to an advantageous situation, something terrible at first, but later results in something good, a misfortune that unexpectedly turns into good fortune; to drop the ball - when someone fails to commit to something they were supposed to follow through with. My friend told me she’d help me look for apartments but then after about two weeks of no luck she dropped the ball. - she stopped helping, she pretended she was busy, she failed to follow through with something she said she’d do; to put someone on a pedestal - give someone uncritical respect or admiration, treat someone as an ideal rather than a real person, we use this phrase when we think that someone is perfect, without faults, almost God-like, when we think so highly of a person; hit or miss - as likely to be unsuccessful as successful, as likely to be bad as to be good, especially because of not being planned or organized well, an unpredictable situation, it is either great or completely horrible, you either get something or you don’t. The service you get in these big stores can be hit-or-miss, depending on the salesperson you talk to.; when hell freezes over/when pigs fly (used interchangeably) - impolite way of saying it will never happen; that’s the way the cookie crumbles - used when something bad has happened to say that someone must accept things the way they are, such is life, c’est la vie, said when something slightly unlucky has happened that could not have been prevented and so must be accepted, used for saying that you must accept a situation that you do not like because you cannot change it.