Idioms

1. BAD HAIR DAY: A day when everything seems to go wrong.

  • What’s wrong with you? Are you having a bad hair day?
  • Today, I am having a bad hair day.
  • She had a bad hair day yesterday.
  • I am in misery because I am having bad hair days one after another.
  • Have you ever had a bad hair day?

2. IN BAD SHAPE: A person who is in bad shape is in poor physical condition.

  • I really am in bad shape. I must exercise more.
  • Rohan had a little accident, and he is in bad shape.
  • Ramesh was in bad shape when he worked in that factory.
  • Did you meet Tina. Her mother told me that she was in bad shape.
  • The patient who was in bad shape a few days ago, is now all right.

3. THE BALL IS IN YOUR COURT: If the ball is in your court, it is your turn to speak or act next.

  • You can’t do anything as long as the ball is in my court.
  • I have told him he can have his job back if he apologises. The ball is in his court now.
  • We have a special offer for you if you want, the ball’s in your court.
  • Which direction will you like to go from here? The ball’s in your court.
  • Ask my father if he will let me go. The ball’s in his court.

4. HAVE A BALL: If you have a ball, you enjoy yourself immensely.

  • The party was great, we had a ball.
  • When I went to hill station with my family, I had a ball.
  • Indian players had a ball, after winning the cricket match.
  • Tomorrow, there is a party. So we will have a ball.
  • When did you have a ball last time?

5. START THE BALL ROLLING: If you start the ball rolling, you begin an activity in which other people will join.

  • I started the ball rolling by donating money to the charity.
  • The hospital appeal received  a donation of 10 million dollars to start the ball rolling.
  • I started the ball rolling by setting up a series of meetings.
  • I would like to start the ball rolling on my project. Can you file this report?
  • My fiance and I started the ball rolling on our wedding plans when we found a place to have a ceremony.

6. A WHOLE NEW BALL GAME: To refer to something as a whole new ball game means that it is a completely different situation due to a new set of circumstances.

  • Email and text messaging has made communication a whole new ball game.
  • I had done a lot of climbing in England, but the Himalayas were a whole new ball game.
  • My parents lived their whole life in a village. Now living in the city is a whole new ball game for them.
  • I can learn English, but learning Chinese is a whole new ball game.
  • You can write good English, but speaking good English is a whole new ball game.

7. MORE BY ACCIDENT THAN BY DESIGN: Something that is done without deliberate intention.

  • I became an actor more by accident than by design.
  • The play was a success more by accident than by design.
  • I kicked the ball and more by accident than by design, it found its way into the net.
  • She got selected in the team, more by accident than by design.
  • Well, I became an inspector, more by accident than by design.

8. OF YOUR OWN ACCORD: If you do something of your own accord, you do it spontaneously or willingly, without being influenced or forced by anyone.

  • The boy went to see the owner of his own accord and admitted breaking the window.
  • She went to Agra of her own accord  to see the Taj.
  • He resigned from his job of his own accord.
  • Mahima married Rohan of her own accord.
  • Rajeev is going to America to set a business of his own accord.

9. NO ACCOUNTING FOR TASTE: This expression is used to indicate surprise at another person’s likes or dislikes.

  • She fell in love with a guy who is short, fat, bald, and poor. There’s no accounting for taste.
  • Look at the purple and green bikes, there is no accounting for taste.
  • Some people seemed to like the new age music, it’s nothing but a lot of noise, there is no accounting for taste.
  • Look at the colour of that car, it’s disgusting. There’s no accounting for taste.
  • They painted their house purple. There’s no accounting for taste.   

10. ACE A TEST: If you obtain a very high score or an excellent result, you ace a test or exam.

  • Sarika’s parents said she could go to the party if she aced her English test.
  • My friend aced the test last year and got a bike from his parents.
  • I think she will ace the test again and get a prize for it.
  • What do you think, who is going to ace the test this time?
  • See, I wasn’t wrong. She has aced the test again.