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English idiom: Test the water


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English idiom: Test the water #1 (permalink) Tue Aug 15, 2006 9:24 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

Please help me increase my list of idioms as well as its meaning. Can you share me some of your list with its meaning? I'm having trouble in understanding some of it. (Is it testing the waters or testing the water) Please bear on me.
Mishy
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Test the water #2 (permalink) Tue Aug 15, 2006 9:39 am   Test the water
 

Hi mishy,

Test the water means find out what something is like. Sometimes children while still at school have the chance to do so called work experience where they spend a week or two working under supervision in a particular job so that they have some idea what the job would be like if they did it after they had left school. They are in fact testing the water, finding out what the job is like.

Alan
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English idiom: Test the water #3 (permalink) Wed Aug 16, 2006 16:00 pm   English idiom: Test the water
 

The basic, literal, concrete meaning of "test the water" is to stick your toe or your hand into a lake or pool to see if the water is comfortable enough to swim in. If the water is a nice temperature, you'll jump in. If it's too cold, maybe you won't. (But I would.:D)

This is the original meaning that leads to the meaning that Alan is talking about. When people "test the water", it means they try an experience for a little while to see if they want to continue.
Jamie (K)
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Test the water #4 (permalink) Wed Aug 16, 2006 16:05 pm   Test the water
 

Hi,

Yes, that's true but of course it could be that you are testing the water and actually drinking from a water source to make sure that it tastes all right.

Alan
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Test the water #5 (permalink) Wed Aug 16, 2006 18:09 pm   Test the water
 

Alan wrote:
Yes, that's true but of course it could be that you are testing the water and actually drinking from a water source to make sure that it tastes all right.

Right. It could be that too. But when I think of someone testing the water, I usually picture a person sticking a toe in the lake with a slight sense of trepidation.
Jamie (K)
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Idioms #6 (permalink) Wed Aug 16, 2006 18:50 pm   Idioms
 

Hi mishy,

As you are interested in learning more idioms. you might be interested to read some of the material I've written for the site under the heading esl lessons:

ESL Lesson: Present Simple
http://www.english-test.net/lessons/

and one I've written about colour idioms:

ESL Lesson: Colour Idioms
http://www.english-test.net/lessons/8/index.html

Alan
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English idiom: Test the water #7 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 0:06 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

Hi Alan,
What does mishy mean?
(I couldn't find it anywhere)
Thanks
Spencer
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Name #8 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:17 am   Name
 

Hi Spencer,

To be honest, I haven't a clue. Probably best to ask 'mishy'.

Alan
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English idiom: Test the water #9 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:08 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

Hi Alan,
I just realized that's the name of mishy, just because it's not written by capital,I got confused a bit.
It looks like an English word to me. (I thought you called Jamie this way :) )
Anyway,thanks for answering my question.
By the way, mishy, do you mean something? :)
Spencer
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English idiom: Test the water #10 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:15 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

Alan, in England do you often use the way of "havn't" instead of "don't have"?
Just because I didn't hear it too many times, allthought I know it's proper.
Thanks
Spencer
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Haven't #11 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:23 am   Haven't
 

Hi Spencer,

Haven't is quite common, I believe.

By the way, I don't quite follow this comment:

Quote:
I thought you called Jamie this way


Alan
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English idiom: Test the water #12 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:47 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

It looked like an adjective,that's why.
I thought you answered to HIM. ( he was the last one before you )
Hey, let me explain myself out of this mess and not to look too stupid. :)
Thanx
Spencer
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English idiom: Test the water #13 (permalink) Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:59 am   English idiom: Test the water
 

Hi Spencer,

As they say, no worries. I see what you meant.

Alan
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Test the water #14 (permalink) Sun Sep 03, 2006 12:44 pm   Test the water
 

Alan wrote:
Hi,

Yes, that's true but of course it could be that you are testing the water and actually drinking from a water source to make sure that it tastes all right.

Alan


Or it could also literally mean dipping your elbow in the bath water before bathing the baby...
Conchita
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In low water #15 (permalink) Sun Sep 03, 2006 13:25 pm   In low water
 

Hi

Can the idiom (in it’s indirect sense, I mean) refer - also – to the depth of a 'pond'?

By the way I also heard:
'for several years he had been in low water' – and, as it seemed to me, it was used in the meaning that his job was not serious for him, for his actual abilities (becasue of low job responsibities, etc)

Not in the meaning that he had been with no money.
If I understood it right :)
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