As an ESL learner, it is important to learn as many slang and colloquial expressions as possible. You may not remember what you have learned, but they will come back to you.
Back number: a person with outdated ideas or information.
e.g. If I were you, I wouldn’t take any advice from someone who is a back number
Swell-head: a conceited person.
e.g. Look at his ego, and he’s such a swell-head.
Turkey: a failure; a sham.
e.g. The whole business was a turkey—there were no investors at all!.
Dead set: very determined.
e.g. We were dead set to finish the project despite the shortage of funds.
Jaw breaker: difficult word to pronounce.
e.g. Can you help me with this jaw breaker? It looks like a foreign word to me.
Caught short: caught at a disadvantage.
e.g. The market plunged, and we were caught short just as thought we were on the road to recovery.
Apple-pie order: very orderly; perfect condition.
e.g. When we returned home, we were surprised to find that everything was still in apple-pie order.
Also-ran: someone not likely to win.
e.g. In this presidential election, he was just an also-ran. In less than two months, he called it quit.
Bean time: dinnertime.
e.g. Come on, guys, wash your hands; it’s bean time.
Turn in: go to bed.
e.g. Come on, guys, it’s time to turn in.
To get English Slang and Colloquial Expressions for ESL Learners, get here to get the digital copy and here to get the book copy.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau