Archive for January 20th, 2011

January 20, 2011

Fat Lady

A very literal interpretation of the expression, pic: operaadventuress.blogspot.com

Today I have a really curious expression: “it’s not over until the fat lady sings”.  the expression means “it isn’t over until it is over” or, in other words, the outcome of a game or competition isn’t know until the event is truly over.  Even if it looks like one might lose there is still a chance to win right up to the last second.

Although this expression is used a lot for sporting events and competitions nowadays it is derived from music, specifically opera.  There the last aria is sung by a usually, aehm, well-build soprano aka “the fat lady” and the opera isn’t over until she is done singing.

Here is an example:

Sport commentator 1: “This is a really tight race but at the moment (insert the name of your you favorite athlete here) is in the lead.”

Sport commentator 2:  “Yes, but the race ain’t over until the fat lady sings.”

January 20, 2011

More confusing words – lay and lie

Here is a group of confusing words: lay, lie, laid, lied.  So lets’ try and get them straight!

Lay means to set something down or place something somewhere as in “please lay all the presents on that table over there”

Lie – well here it gets a little more complicated – means two very different things, namely 1) to recline, to position oneself in the vertical “I am really tiered.  I am going to lie down on the bed for a bit”

and 2) to tell something that is not true. “Tell me did you break that window with your ball or was it little Johnny – and don’t lie to me!”

When lie means relaxing on a bed and when it means telling somebody a falsehood should be pretty obvious from the context.

For those interested in using these words in the past tense:

Lay – laid- “She laid out all the facts.”  “The chicken laid an egg.”

Lie –  lied: “He lied to me for years about his finances.  I’ll never trust him again.”

Lie – and here it gets tricky – lay: “I lay on my bed all morning long thinking about what I should do with the rest of my life.”