Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

Hi everybody. Welcome back to Weekly Words. My name is Alisha, and today we’re going to talk about clothes idioms. Okay, let’s get started.
‘Beat the pants off someone’.
To beat someone severely, or to win against someone easily in a race or a game. If you do much better than somebody else in some form of competition, you can use the phrase ‘beat the pants off’. In a sentence, “My brother beat the pants off the competition at the swimming meet last weekend”. “My brother beat the pants of the competition at the basketball game last week.” My brother is a really skilled sportsman, it seems. James, what’s up?
Next phrase is ‘burst at the seems’.
To ‘burst at the seams’. If you imagine a shirt, or just something, when there’s too much inside it, the seams of it kind of go “aahhh”. They’re expanding too much, and when there’s way too much of something inside a piece of cloth, maybe the seam rips. So this phrase means something that is too full, or too crowded. In a sentence, “My subway car was bursting at the seams, I could barely breathe”.
The next on is ‘by the seat of one’s pants’.
I don't know understand the history of this phrase, but it means you’re able to do something because you’re just really lucky. For example, “I passed the test by the seat of my pants”. Like, just out of pure luck.
Next is ‘to have something up one’s sleeve’.
Imagine a magician or something, when they do tricks they pull flowers out of their jacket pocket, or something like that, or out of their sleeve. It means you have some kind of plan ready, you’re prepared with something that might be a little mischievous. So, let’s see. In a sentence, “I knew my friend had something up his sleeve for my birthday because he was being really mysterious”? Okay.

Next! ‘Wear more than one hat’.
This is a good phrase. This phrase means you have more than one responsibility. You have more than one job, or you have a few different roles in your life. The image is that you change hats for each of your roles. “I wear more than one hat in my current position. I’m in charge of a few different departments at my company”.
Alright, that’s the end of things. That’s the end of clothes idioms. Thank you very much for joining us. Give these a try and we will see you again next week for more fun information. Bye.

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EnglishClass101.com Verified
Tuesday at 06:30 PM
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Which word do you like the most?

EnglishClass101.com Verified
Monday at 07:30 PM
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Hello Matias,


Thanks for taking the time to ask us your question.


To "beat the pants off someone" isn't a common idiom although it does exist. I believe it would be heard more so in the US. It means to beat someone severely or to win against someone easily. This is usually in reference to a race or game. It's not literal to one of the meanings of the verb 'beat' (meaning: hit or punch) but is related to the other meaning of the verb 'beat' (meaning: defeat).


I hope this is helpful to you! 😄


Sincerely,

Éva

Team EnglishClass101.com

Matias Madaf
Friday at 04:44 AM
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Hi everyone!

I have a question about the first idiom presented: "beat the pants off someone"

In the example Alisha said "My brother beat the pants off the competition at basketball game last week". So, could this idiom be reformulated as "beat the pants off someone/something"?


Regards!