Archive | marzo 2013

A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush

Más vale pájaro en mano que un ciento volando

Google Images, "A bird in the hand..."

Google Images, “A bird in the hand…” Click on the image to listen to a song by Ice Cube

Meaning:

This saying tell us that it is better to have something for sure than to have the promise to get something in the future but that is uncertain. The bird in the hand represents the things that we have for sure or a guarantee to get something. The two birds in the bush are those things that we don’t have at hand. We might get them but it is not sure to have them.

 

Google Images, "A bird in the hand..."

Google Images, “A bird in the hand…” Click on the image to watch a video by Vsaucé

Origin:

This Greek proverb was used by Aesop in some of his fables. The Romans also used it, and in the 1400’s it was translated into English. The hunters of birds said that a bird that you had already captured (in the hand) was better than the promise of getting two instead. Sometimes, we reject things that we already have because we have the illusion of getting uncertain better things.

 

Google Images, "A bird in the hand..."

Google Images, “A bird in the hand…” Click on the image to watch a video by Quantum Conundrum

Example:

• My best friend told me that in his company there would be some well paid new openings for next year. He urged me to quit my job and to apply for one. Of course, I will apply for a job but I will not quit my job. My father used to say, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”
Google Images, "A bird in the hand..."

Google Images, “A bird in the hand…” Click on the image to watch a video by Paul Dinning

Beware of greeks Bearing Gifts

Enemigo que hace regalos, seguro que quiere algo

Google images, "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts"

Google images, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts” Click on the image to watch a video by VookInc

 

Meaning:

We use this expression as a warning. We tell others to be suspicious of presents from those who are not our friends or from those with whom we have had problems with in the past.

 

Google images, "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts"

Google images, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts” Click on the image to hear a song by Bridges Left Burning

Origin:

The Roman writer, Virgil,  wrote the Aeneid. In it, the Greek army tried for ten years to conquer the city of Troy.  In the end, the Greeks played the Trojans a trick. They pretended to leave away and left behind  a large wooden horse as a gift. In it, hundreds of Greek soldiers were hidden because the belly of the horse was hollow. When the Trojans pulled that horse into the city, the Greeks went out at night and defeated the Trojans, conquering the city as a consequence.

 

Google images, "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts"

Google images, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts” Click on the image to see how you can learn new proverbs

Example:

• My boss called me to his office to tell me that I had gotten a raise. Then, he asked me to call his wife to tell her that we would be working together all next weekend in the office. I smell a rat here. He never gives presents to any one, neither does he give any raises. I don’t know what to do. The promise of that raise makes me think that I should beware of Greeks bearing presents.
Google images, "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts"

Google images, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts” Click on the image to hear a song by Tantrumsanthem

Between The Devil and The Deep Blue Sea

Entre la espada y la pared

 

Google images, "Between the devil and the deep blue sea"

Google images, “Between the devil and the deep blue sea” Click on the image to listen a song by George Harrison

Meaning:

We feel between the devil and the deep blue sea when we are in a very difficult position, between two great dangers. It refers to a very difficult decision to make.

Google images, "Between the devil and the deep blue sea"

Google images, “Between the devil and the deep blue sea” Click to listen to a song by Emil Bulls

 

 

Origin:

There was a heavy plank fastened to one side of a ship in the 17th century.  This plank was called the devil. It was used to support the cannons. There were times in which sailors had to go out to do some repairs to the devils. This was a very dangerous situation because the mariner could fall down any moment into the deep blue sea. If the ship got into a very tight area, the sailor could be easily smashed and die. That is why, this expression got an expanded meaning of being between two dangerous positions.

 

Google images, "Between the devil and the deep blue sea"

Google images, “Between the devil and the deep blue sea” Click to listen to a song by Black Stone Cherry

Example:

• I was invited to be a judge in the last art contest at school. The last two finalists were my nephew and the son of my best friend. After every judge had voted, the result was a tie. I had to decide who the winner would be. I didn’t want to vote. I felt myself between the devil and the deep blue sea.
Google images, "Between the devil and the deep blue sea"

Google images, “Between the devil and the deep blue sea” Click to listen to a song by Peggy Lee

Between a rock and a hard place

Entre la espada y la pared

Google images, "Between a rock and a hard place"

Google images, “Between a rock and a hard place” Click on the image to see 127 hour movie trailer.

Meaning:

We use this expression when we are in a very tough situation. Usually, when we have to decide one of two things but we don’t know which of the two to pick out. A similar expression is “Between the devil and the deep blue sea” or “Between the wall and the sword.”

 

Google images, "Between a rock and a hard place"

Google images, “Between a rock and a hard place” Click to watch The Rolling Stones´ video Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Origin:

This is an American expression from the 20th century. Just imagine that you were squeezed between a rock and a hard place (which in fact are two similar things). You turn to either place but you find out that neither place is pleasant.

 

Google images, "Between a rock and a hard place"

Google images, “Between a rock and a hard place” Click to watch video by Jason Golec

Example:

• I have been offered two new jobs. One will give me professional development but the other one will give a much better pay. I don’t know which of the two options I have to pick out. I feel myself between a rock and a hard place.
Google images, "Between a rock and a hard place"

Google images, “Between a rock and a hard place” Click to watch UFO´s Between a rock and a hard place

Your Better Half

La Media Naranja

 

Google images, "Better half" Click to watch "Better Half" by Keith Urban

Google images, “Better half” Click to watch “Better Half” by Keith Urban

Meaning:

Your better half is your couple. Your beloved husband, wife or whatever it is. If we consider that a couple is made up by two. Your best complement is your better half.

 

Google images, "Better half" Click to watch "Better Half of me" by Dash Berlin

Google images, “Better half” Click to watch “Better Half of me” by Dash Berlin

Origin:

If we cut several fruits into two and then we mixed them and then tried to put them back together again, we would realize that this task could take a little long. Since not all of the fruits are of the same size or shape, only those who could best complete the other is the better half. In the 16th and 17th centuries puritans said that each person was made up of two halves: body and soul, each one being the best half of the other. Extending this concept to a marriage, Sir Philip Sidney, a writer said that the best half was the best possible spouse.

 

Google images, "Better Half" Click to watch "My Better Half shor story"

Google images, “Better Half” Click to watch “My Better Half short story”

Example:

• When I met Sally, I learned to admire all her qualities. She is tender, loving, caring, intelligent, etc. I realized at that moment that she would make my better half.
Google images, "Better Half"

Google images, “Better Half” Click to watch, “Better Half” by Ginuwine

Bells and Whistles

Estar sobrecargado de cosas / Tener muchos gariboleos

 

Google Images, "Bells and Whistles"

Google Images, “Bells and Whistles” Click to hear the song Bells and Whistles by Steph MacPherson

Meaning:

We say that something has bells and whistles when it has impressive, flashy accessories but which, in the end, are unnecessary. When something is innovative and with high technology, we say that it is state-of-the-art but if it contains excessive features, it has bells and whistles.

 

Google images, Bells and Whistles"

Google images, Bells and Whistles”

Origin:

In modern times, many new technological advances have been reached especially when it comes about electronics. The “bells and whistles” depict those unnecessary additions to equipment. Of course, these additions are a marketing plus to make customers buy those items at a higher cost but they do not really affect the good working of the product.

 

Google Images, "Bells and Whistles"

Google Images, “Bells and Whistles”

Example:

• My brother bought a new cell phone with internet connections, camera, video, MP4 player, games, etc. But a telephone is just for calling, isn’t it? I would never buy such a telephone with all those bells and whistles. Would you?
bells and whistles1