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  1. beachboy's Avatar
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    #1

    its down to you

    Could anybody explain and contextualize the expression above?

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    #2

    Re: its down to you

    Hi, Beach Boy,

    It's a fairly recent variation of it's up to you, or the ball's in your court/it's your decision/you choose.

    'I've done everything I can to sort this out, now it's down to you.'

    'Shall I cook dinner or shall we eat out? It's down to you.'

    Rover

  2. beachboy's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: its down to you

    Thanks, Rover. I had been just trying to figure out the difference between its up to you and its down to you, and was never able to do it!

  3. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: its down to you

    I don't think this one has made it across the Atlantic yet.

    If there were several people competing for something, and now you are nearing the end, you might say "It's down to you four" or "It's down to the final two" to mean the numbers have been reduced.

    If someone said it was "down to me" to fix a problem, I would think that everyone else had already tried it and failed, so that left only me in the group.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #5

    Re: its down to you

    I've just thought of another use of this expression:

    'You're to blame'; 'you're responsible for it'; 'it's your fault'.

    * * *

    'We lost every game last season and it's down to you - you're a lousy goalkeeper.'

    'Sorry, everybody. . . the party was a disaster and it's down to me - I forgot to book the disco.'

    Rover

  4. beachboy's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: its down to you

    So, could I say to a new employee, who is learning his job: "William, youre in charge of this group, so its down to you to cater to their needs, and do this, and this, and this,...? I mean, would it mean the same as its your responsibility to cater to their needs..?

  5. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: its down to you

    Quote Originally Posted by beachboy View Post
    So, could I say to a new employee, who is learning his job: "William, youre in charge of this group, so its down to you to cater to their needs, and do this, and this, and this,...? I mean, would it mean the same as its your responsibility to cater to their needs..?
    You could, but I'd suggest you use "It's up to you" which most natives will understand.
    There are problems associated with being an "early adopter" of new phrases:
    - many won't understand it.
    - some will ask you to justify it.
    - If you're a non-native speaker, some will assume you don't know the "correct" phrase.
    - A new phrase has more likelihood of not catching on and becoming
    pass.

    To me, the meaning is something like what Barb said. The image is this: Five names are listed on a board and someone has to complete a task. You are last on the list. The first four try and fail, and their names are progressively crossed off. So, it is literally down to you to complete it. The phrase makes sense to me in this scenario. "Up to you" doesn't have this connotation.



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