Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Feb 2013
    • Posts: 1,128
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    What is the English for this expression

    Hello all users!

    Suppose we are about to open a tin of beef, but to our surprise we find that there is very little beef in the total mass of the tinned food. Because of the scarcity of the beef in the food, I would like to say it properly enough for you to understand. In my country, it is customary to say, for instance, (in connection with the example under discussion) that "this tin did not even lie close to a calf (a young cow)" or "this tin did not touch a calf" or "there is hardly a trace of beef in this tin" or "this tin is not even closely related to a cow" or "this tin does not even smell of a calf".

    What do you think?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by JACEK1; 19-Jul-2014 at 19:46.

  1. riquecohen's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil

    • Join Date: Aug 2010
    • Posts: 6,002
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    It seems to me that all of your suggestions would be easily understood by a native speaker. I can imagine someone saying that "this can (AmE) has never been anywhere near a cow."

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Feb 2013
    • Posts: 1,128
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    Are there any other humorous ways of expressing the same thought?

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,354
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    I would have gone for "I don't think this has ever seen a cow".

    This phrase would be closely followed by "I'll have to heifer word with the manufacturers" and then "Shall I see if we have an-udder one?"
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. Amigos4's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Oct 2007
    • Posts: 47,752
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    I would have gone for "I don't think this has ever seen a cow".

    This phrase would be closely followed by "I'll have to heifer word with the manufacturers" and then "Shall I see if we have an-udder one?"
    Oh my! You Brits are such a funny bunch!!!

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 24,983
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #6

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    There was an American television commercial about small hamburgers. The tag line was "Where's the beef"? The elderly lady, Clara Peller, became a celebrity. President Reagan used the phrase to challenge an opponent's program in a debate.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ug75diEyiA0

  5. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 23,275
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #7

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    "I'll have to heifer word with the manufacturers"
    That's veally funny!

  6. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 23,275
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #8

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    Quote Originally Posted by JACEK1 View Post
    Suppose we are about to open a tin of beef, but to our surprise we find that there is very little beef in the total mass of the tinned food.
    Do you understand the phrase, "to be about to do something"? It means you haven't done it yet. I think you mean "Suppose we have just opened a tin of beef and, to our surprise ..."

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Feb 2013
    • Posts: 1,128
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #9

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    to be going to do something very soon:

    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dict...bout+to+do+sth

  7. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,354
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #10

    Re: What is the English for this expression

    No-one is arguing with that, but Raymott's point is that if you were about to open​ the tin of beef, you would not yet know that there was very little meat in it. The contents are still invisible until you open the tin. While you are "about to open" the tin, it is still closed.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. [Vocabulary] English Expression
    By Gilles L in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-Nov-2010, 23:26
  2. [General] English expression
    By Gilles L in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 25-Apr-2009, 12:42
  3. english expression
    By maria in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 19-Mar-2009, 02:24
  4. English Expression
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 16-Jan-2008, 12:50
  5. English Expression
    By contact in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 17-Jun-2006, 00:01

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •