- forgetfulOur neighbor is very absent-minded and is always getting locked out of his house.
armed to the teeth
- fully armed, having many weaponsThe robbers were armed to the teeth when they robbed the bank.
at or on the tip of one`s tongue
- at the point of being said, almost rememberedMy former teacher's name is on the tip of my tongue and I will soon remember it.
- say bad things about someoneThe football players are always bad-mouthing their coach.
beat into one`s head
- teach by telling again and again, drillI have been trying to beat the history material into the student's head.
beat one`s brains out
- tire oneself out by thinkingI have been beating my brains out all day trying to remember who we should invite to the party.
beat one`s head against a wall
- struggle uselessly against something, not succeed after trying very hardYou are beating your head against the wall trying to figure out what the new boss wants.
- too high an opinion of one's own ability or importance, conceitHe has a big head since he won the speech contest at university.
blow one`s mind
- become wildly enthusiastic over something as if understanding it for the first time in an entirely new lightMy friend told me that if I read the new book it would blow my mind.
blue in the face
- very angry or upset, excited and very emotionalHe argued with the supervisor until he was blue in the face.
boggle the mind
- stop the normal thinking process by being fantastic or incredible, unbelievableIt really boggles the mind when you think how quickly the Internet began to have a major impact on people's lives.
born with a silver spoon in one`s mouth
- born to wealth and comfort, born richThe boy was born with a silver spoon in his mouth and has never had to work at all in his life.
- an unusually dense or stupid personHe is such a bonehead. He never understands what other people are trying to tell him.
- the loss of talented and educated people of a country to other countries where conditions are betterThere is a brain drain from many countries to the United States where some conditions are very good.
button one`s lip
- stop talking, keep a secret, be quietPlease button your lip so that we can hear what the speaker is saying.
by the skin of one`s teeth
- by a narrow margin, barelyWe were able to catch the train by the skin of our teeth.
by the sweat of one`s brow
- by hard workHe built up the business by the sweat of his brow.
by word of mouth
- orally, from person to person by the spoken wordI learned that there would be a holiday next week by word of mouth.
cat get`s one`s tongue
- one is not willing to talk because of shynessThe cat seemed to have gotten her tongue and she was not able to say anything.
cheek by jowl
- side by side, in closeThe boxes were placed in the room cheek by jowl and nothing else could fit in.
cross one`s mind
- be a sudden or passing thought, come to one's mindIt suddenly crossed my mind that the store would be closed all day on Monday.
curl one`s hair
- shock, frighten, horrifyThe movie is very realistic and many of the scenes will curl your hair.
foam at the mouth
- be very angry (like a mad dog)The girl's father was so angry that he was foaming at the mouth.
get through one`s head
- understand or believeIt was difficult to get it through the bank manager's head that I didn't want to borrow any more money.
give someone a piece of one`s mind
- scold angrily, say what one really thinks to someoneI gave the store manager a piece of my mind when I told him about the broken product.
go to one`s head
- make someone too proud, make a person think he or she is too importantI think that his new job has gone to his head and he thinks that he is much better than everyone else.
go to one's head
- make one dizzyThe alcohol quickly went to his head and he had to sit down for awhile.
hair stands on end
- the hair of one's head rises because of frightMy hair stood on end when I saw the large dog run out and begin to bark at me.
have rocks in one`s head
- be stupid, not have good judgementHe must have rocks in his head if he thinks that I am going to lend him any more money.
head above water
- out of difficulty, clear of troubleMy brother has been having a hard time keeping his head above water since he lost his job.
- search for qualified individuals to fill certain positionsThe company has been head-hunting for many months in order to try and find a new president.
- with the head or front pointing at something, with the front facingThere was a head-on crash last night near our house that left three people dead.
head over heels
- upside down, head firstThe little boy fell head over heels in love with the girl in his class.
- psychiatristWhen I was a child my next door neighbor was a head shrinker.
hide/bury one`s head in the sand
- keep from seeing, knowing or understanding something dangerous or unpleasant, refuse to see or face somethingHis father always buries his head in the sand and never wants to deal with any problems.
hold one`s tongue
- be silent, not talk"Please hold your tongue", the teacher said to the young boy.
in one`s face
- abruptly, unexpectedlyThe plan to have a going away party for our boss blew up in our face when we heard he would not attend.
in one`s hair
- bothering one, always annoying someoneMy sister's small son is always in her hair when she is making dinner.
keep a stiff upper lip
- be brave, face trouble bravelyWe managed to keep a stiff upper lip when the company announced that they would close down our office.
keep one`s chin up
- be brave, be determined, face trouble with courageMy brother is trying to keep his chin up even though he has lost his job.
keep one`s head
- stay calm when there is trouble or dangerEveryone tried to keep their head during the fire at the hotel.
keep one`s mouth shut
- be or stay silentI tried hard to keep my mouth shut during the salesman's speech.
leave a bad taste in one`s mouth
- make a bad impression, make or feel disgustedThe way that the company treated the workers left a bad taste in our mouth.
let one`s hair down
- act freely and naturally, relaxWe were able to let our hair down at the party and have a good time.
- support for something shown by words but not by actionsThe politician paid lip service to the proposal to build a new subway system but he didn't really want one.
- a sad or disappointed lookHe had a long face after he was fired from his job.
- be embarassed or ashamed by an error or failure, lose self-respectThe manager lost face when the person that she hired to help her was useless as a worker.
- a noisy, boastful or foolish talkerMy friend is a loudmouth and is always making foolish plans that he never carries out.
make head or tail of something (usually negative)
- find meaning in , understandI was unable to make head nor tail of our company's plans to restructure our department.
make one`s mouth water
- look or smell very good, make one want to eat or drink something one sees or smellsThe smell of the fish cooking in the restaurant made my mouth water.
make up one`s mind
- choose what to do, decideI have still not been able to make up my mind as to whether or not to return to school.
melt in one`s mouth
- be so tender as to seem to need no chewing, taste very goodThe pasta served at the new restaurant melted in our mouth.
off the top of one`s head
- without thinking hard, quicklyI was unable to remember the name of the restaurant off the top of my head.
on/upon one`s head
- on one's selfThe little boy brought the anger of his parent's upon his head.
out of one`s hair
- get rid of a nuisance or annoyanceMy sister wants to get her daughter permanently out of her hair.
over one`s head
- not understandable, beyond one's ability to understandThe mathematics lectures went over my head during the first few weeks.
pick the brains of
- get ideas or information about something by asking an expertWe picked the brains of the official who was sent to talk about the pollution problem.
put one`s foot in one`s mouth
- get into trouble by saying something embarassing or rudeMy colleague put his foot in his mouth when he told everyone that he didn't like the new manager.
put our heads together
- confer, discuss, talkWe put our heads together with the other members of the department to try and find a solution to the problem.
put (something or someone) out of one's head/mind
- try to forget someone or somethingI was forced to put my holidays out of my head when we had the emergency problems at our company.
put words into one`s mouth
- say without proof that another person has certain feelings or opinionsMy boss was putting words into my mouth when he told me what he thought that I wanted to do.
rack one`s brain
- try one's best to think, make a great mental effortI racked my brain for over an hour to try and figure out what to do about the problem with the new computer.
ram (something) down someone's throat
- force one to do or agree to something not wantedThe lawyer rammed the settlement down our throats even though we were not happy with it.
- save one's good reputation, popularity or dignity when something has happened to hurt oneThe government was unable to save face after they failed to reach an agreement with the union over pension benefits.
say a mouthful
- say something of great importance or meaning, say more by a sentence than the words usually meanThe little boy said a mouthful when he began to talk about the complicated history material.
sink (get) one`s teeth into something
- have something real or solid to think about, struggle withI was finally able to sink my teeth into the problem and began to find a solution.
slap in the face
- insultThe fact that an extreme candidate won the election was a slap in the face to the moderate voters.
slip of the tongue
- the mistake of saying something one had not wanted or planned to say, an error of speechI made a slip of the tongue when I told the woman who everyone hates that we would have a party.
- find and argue about small and unimportant differencesMy boss is always splitting hairs when I try and talk to him about something important.
- a feeling that one is very important or more important than one really isMy sister has a swelled head since she got the new job that many people had applied for.
take it on the chin
- be badly beaten or hurt, get into troubleHe was forced to take it on the chin when he got into the fight with the man at the store.
take the words out of one`s mouth
- say what another was just going to say, put another's thoughts into wordsHe took the words right out of my mouth when he said that he wanted to go and get something to eat.
tooth and nail
- fiercely, fighting as hard as possibleWe fought tooth and nail to get the new wing of the hospital opened.
turn the other cheek
- let someone do something to one and not do it in return, not hit back when hitWe were told in school that we should always turn the other cheek when we were attacked by someone.
up to the chin in
- very busy with, working hard at, having very much or many ofShe has been up to her chin all morning in work to try and get ready for the party.
use one`s head
- use one's brain or mind, think, have common senseSometimes I think that the manager of the video store never uses her head at all when you ask her a question.