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What is afoot?

Afoot” has two meanings. It means to walk

Do you snarl?

Dog snarl (gruñen). Lions snarl. And so do mortals.

The onus is upon you

“Onus” is a noun and it is similar to responsibility.


“Flag” (bandera) you will know as that which countries have.

A snake in the grass

Snake you may know (serpiente). There are many dangerous snakes in many countries, and in Parliaments too.

Are you a dresser?

To dress (vestir) you will know. “Dresser” is a noun and…
Are you a mole?

Are you a mole?

“Mole” (topo) you may know as the small black animal that digs tunnels under the ground, perhaps under your lawn.

How do you gauge the situation?

A gauge (calibrador) is an instrument that measures things.

Do not have truck with the Devil.

Truck (camión) you may know. A similar word is lorry. The…
How much was the porsche? It was a bird seed

How much was the Porsche? It was bird seed.

Seed (semilla, simiente, grano, pepita) you may know. Perhaps…

Are you “up a gum tree”?

“Gum” you may know. It refers to a number of things (encía, goma, pegamento, resina).

Are you a dabbler?

To dabble means to “shake about in liquid”. For example,…

Is Mr. Sanchez going off at half-cock?

“Cock” (gallo) you may know. You probably have a “cockstop” (llave de paso) in your kitchen and bathroom.
Are you in fine feather?

Are you in fine feather?

Feather (pluma) you may know. Here our focus is on idioms (modismos) that use feather.
Me or I?

Me or I?

How often have you heard this phrase: “it is me”. Many times…
Do you sometimes seat on a fence?

Do you sometimes sit on the fence?

“Fence” (valla, cerca) you may know. An area can be fenced (zona cercada o vallada).
Are you an ostrich?

Are you an ostrich?

“Ostrich” (avestruz) you may know. It is a bird that has…
Chin Chin

Chin Chin!

You may know “Chin-Chin” (¡chin-chin!). It is used when…
That is beyond my ken

That is beyond my ken

The name “Ken” you may know. It is a shorter versión of the name Kenneth. However, “ken” has other uses.


Have you ever been sailing? Do you sometimes go sailing (hacer vela)?

Furloughs for many

Many people are “on furlough” this month, in many European countries.
Just Chugging along

How art thou? Just chugging along.

Steam trains “chug” (resoplan), and an engine in a car or…
Are you in the loop?

Are you in the loop?

A “loop” can mean many things. First, as a noun. There could be a loop (curva) in a road, in a river (meandro) or in a rope (lazada).


Lemon” (limón) you will know. You may have made the drink “lemonade” at home.
A fornlorn hope?

Economic recovery in Spain? A forlorn hope?

“Forlorn is an adjective and can be used to describe people, a cottage (casita de campo), town or a place, or something that has little hope.
Are you a Meddler?

Are you a meddler?

“To meddle” is to interfere (entremeterse o estorbar) with something) or to tamper with something.
Are you middling?

Are you middling?

erhaps. If you be asked “how are you?” one response could be “middling, thank you”.

Are you a bigwig?

Perhaps. “Wig” (peluca) you may know. A bigwig is an important person, and in Spanish you might use “pez gordo”.
Have you seen a folly?

Have you seen a folly?

“Folly” has two uses. A folly (locura o desatino) can be a stupid thing. The base of the word is “fool”.
Involved in a holdup?

Involved in a holdup?

Have you ever been involved in a holdup? The answer is yes. “Holdup” has 3 uses.


A fish can smell fishy (a pescado), especially if it is not fresh. “Fishy” has another use.


“Different” (distinto, diferente) you will know.
By a whisker

By a whisker

“Whisker” you may know. Cats have whiskers (bigotes), as do many animals.

New Year Resolutions?

You will know that it is customary for many mortals to make New Year Resolutions

Are you a squirrel sometimes?

“Squirrel” (ardilla) you may know. Squirrels store nuts…

To be bedevilled

“To be bedevilled by” is to have a lot of persistent (persistente)…

Have you ever erred?

Perhaps! The writer of this article has erred many times:…

Are you sometimes “detached”?

“Detached” has the verb “detach” (separar, despegar)…

More tautologies - III

Do not be guilty of using tautologies. Using them may confuse…

More tautologies

Examine these: The prices of houses in England are falling…
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