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    #1

    on pins and needles/fuss and bother/put on/put on airs/give yourself airs

    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to tell me whether I am right with my interpretation of the expressions in bold in the following sentences?

    I have been on pins and needles all week long until she sent word that everything was all right.
    Jane's mother was on pins and needles because Jane was very late getting home from school.
    Many famous actors are on pins and needles before the curtain opens for a play.
    on pins and needles = nervously anxious

    It was on the tip of my tongue to tell him he was a liar but I didn’t want a row to be started.
    on the tip of one's tongue = ready to utter something

    It’s more fuss and bother than it’s worth.

    fuss and bother = fuss and bother is what is involved in being too anxious or careful about doing something exactly right

    He’s not seriously hurt. He’s just putting it on.That’s his usual way.

    He put on a pretense of bravery, but we all knew that it was false.

    put on = assume affectedly, pretend to

    The fact that her parents own a villa in Capri is no reason for Amanda to keep putting on airs.

    put on airs = to show conceit; act in a superior or condescending manner

    Don’t give yourself airs! It makes you look ridiculously.

    give oneself airs = to act pretentiously, or in a snobbish manner

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.

  1. buggles's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: on pins and needles/fuss and bother/put on/put on airs/give yourself airs

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to tell me whether I am right with my interpretation of the expressions in bold in the following sentences?

    I have been on pins all week long until she sent word that everything was all right.
    Jane's mother was on pins because Jane was very late getting home from school.
    Many famous actors are on pins before the curtain opens for a play.
    on pins = nervously anxious

    It was on the tip of my tongue to tell him he was a liar but I didnít want a row to be started.
    on the tip of one's tongue = ready to utter something

    Itís more fuss and bother than itís worth.

    fuss and bother = fuss and bother is what is involved in being too anxious or careful about doing something exactly right

    Heís not seriously hurt. Heís just putting it on.Thatís his usual way.

    He put on a pretense of bravery, but we all knew that it was false.

    put on = assume affectedly, pretend to

    The fact that her parents own a villa in Capri is no reason for Amanda to keep putting on airs.

    put on airs = to show conceit; act in a superior or condescending manner

    Donít give yourself airs! It makes you look ridiculous.

    give oneself airs = to act pretentiously, or in a snobbish manner

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.

    On pins = nervous

    pins and needles = tingling in fingers or other body parts as a result of return of circulation after blood supply temporarily cut off.

    All the others look fine to me.

    buggles (not a teacher)


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    #3

    Re: on pins and needles/fuss and bother/put on/put on airs/give yourself airs

    Quote Originally Posted by buggles View Post
    On pins = nervous

    pins and needles = tingling in fingers or other body parts as a result of return of circulation after blood supply temporarily cut off.

    All the others look fine to me.

    buggles (not a teacher)
    I would use "pins and needles.". I don't know the expression "on pins." Perhaps it is another one of those Brit/Yank things.

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      • English Teacher
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      • Oriya
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    #4

    Exclamation Re: on pins and needles/fuss and bother/put on/put on airs/give yourself airs

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to tell me whether I am right with my interpretation of the expressions in bold in the following sentences?

    He’s not seriously hurt. He’s just putting it on. That’s his usual way.
    Can be expressed this way:
    Is he seriously hurt or just putting it on that way as usual?
    He put on a pretense of bravery, but we all knew that it was false.

    put on = assume affectedly, pretend to= to pretend to have a particular feeling or way of behaving which is not real or natural to you

    The fact that her parents own a villa in Capri is no reason for Amanda to keep putting on airs.
    Pay no attention to her. She is just putting on airs.
    put on airs = to show conceit; act in a superior or condescending manner

    Don’t give yourself airs! It makes you look ridiculously funny.

    give oneself airs = to act pretentiously, or in a snobbish manner
    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.
    All three expressions have similar use.

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