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  1. vectra's Avatar
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    #1

    cartoon script with start a business from cold

    Hello,

    Here is a list of idioms I used in a cartoon script:
    1. to test the water
    2. to put one's shoulder to the wheel
    3. to bring home the bacon
    4. six of one and half a dozen of the other
    5. at sixes and sevens
    6. to start a business from cold
    7. to give/get the green light
    8. to play one's trump card
    9. a slippery customer
    10. to shrug something off
    11. a wildcat strike
    12. a shake-out

    And here is the script:
    Jane is talking to her colleague Ruth about a recent strike which shocked everybody at the office.
    Jane: I say, Ruth, what triggered the strike?
    Ruth: A wildcat strike would be closer to the mark.
    Jane: Oh, you mean some of our staff went on strike unofficially?
    Ruth: That’s right! The union did not give them the green light to do that.
    Jane: I see, but what caused the strike?
    Ruth: The decision of the Board to increase the staff’s salaries by 6%. The union had expected a 12% hike.
    Jane: Employees go on strike to have their salaries increased, but inflation erodes any salary hike. It is really a “six of one and half a dozen of the other” situation.
    Ruth: You know most of those who went on strike are women. In many families they are the ones who bring home the bacon.
    Jane: I do know all that. Actually, I am at one with them. Our economy has been at sixes and sevens for the last couple of years. If you want to start a business from cold, you have to obtain a loan. But interest is so high.
    Ruth: Well, my brother has managed to obtain a loan on very favourable conditions.
    Jane: Oh, how did he do that?
    Ruth: You know, he just shrugged off all these unpleasant experiences and pressed ahead. But to be frank, he had tested the water, and he is lucky to have such good staff: they all put their shoulders to the wheel.
    Jane: Well, coming back to the strike. Has there been any shake-out at the company to get rid of “too active” employees?
    Ruth: Not that I know of. The boss is a slippery customer, and is good at having his own way, but the staff did manage to incorporate a clause about handsome severance payment into the employment contract and now they can play their trump card when it comes to further negotiations.
    Jane: Way to go!

    Before posting the script I had consulted the dictionary of idioms on English Language (ESL) Learning Online - UsingEnglish.com.
    What I am not sure about is "to start from cold". I have never come across this expression. I do understand its meaning, but I think "to start from scratch" is the usual way to say it.
    Then "to test the water". Your dictionary gives "to test the waters".
    And do we use "to bring home the bacon" these days?

    Thank you for the time and help.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: cartoon script with start a business from cold

    Quote Originally Posted by vectra View Post
    What I am not sure about is "to start from cold". I have never come across this expression. I do understand its meaning, but I think "to start from scratch" is the usual way to say it.
    Then "to test the water". Your dictionary gives "to test the waters".
    And do we use "to bring home the bacon" these days?

    Thank you for the time and help.
    "To start from cold" is much the same as "to start from scratch". It refers to starting an engine which is of course cold at the beginning but then warms up. If I remember rightly, years ago cars had to be warmed up before being driven so you would start the engine and then leave it running for a little while before driving off.

    I use "to test the water" and "to test the waters" fairly indiscriminately.

    In BrE we certainly refer to someone "bringing home the bacon" still.

  3. vectra's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: cartoon script with start a business from cold

    Dear Gillnetter,

    You are absolutely right. But these lists of idioms were compiled in 2004. At that time the Internet was not widely used in this country, and, secondly, I think the teachers just borrowed these idioms from one of the books of idioms available at that time.
    Then the books of idioms were officially approved at a sitting of the department and published by the university publishing house. Now we study these idioms according to the syllabus.
    Under the circumstances I have no choice but to work with what we have, and that is why Usingenglish forum members' contributions are so important to bring the idioms up-to-date.

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