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    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #1

    Run out of gas

    Do you, English, have a proverb (or a saying, or an idiom) describing a situation when someone runs out of gas too early or lacks the drive to continue with something he has just started or is about to start..
    You see we have a proverb in our language that reads something like that:
    all the steam went into the whistle (meaning a steam-boat just about to start) - the implication is that the whistle was so powerful or, rather, that there was so little "steam" that none is left to actually begin the journey
    Hope, my explanation was not too intricate :)
    I was just wondering whether the English could have some similar saying.
    Thanks, in advance.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Run out of gas

    Is this any good? https://www.usingenglish.com/referen...+trousers.html

    There is another one, which has more of your original's idea of steam pressure, but it's rather coarse
    All f**t and no sh*t - not to be used in polite society.

    b


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #3

    Re: Run out of gas

    Do you, English, have a proverb (or a saying, or an idiom) describing a situation when someone runs out of gas too early or lacks the drive to continue with something he has just started or is about to start.. Ran out of steam


    • Join Date: Aug 2006
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    #4

    Re: Run out of gas

    This one, below, describes close to that situation, but it states from the outset that the person is simply a big talker but can't actually perform.

    [Subject] can talk the talk but [subject] can't walk the walk.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #5

    Re: Run out of gas

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    Is this any good? https://www.usingenglish.com/referen...+trousers.html

    There is another one, which has more of your original's idea of steam pressure, but it's rather coarse
    All f**t and no sh*t - not to be used in polite society.

    b

    Thank you :)
    Well, the second one seems quite close in meaning! ;)

    As for the first one, it seems a little different to me because when we use that phrase about "steam" it is not so much about talk. It is rather about wrong energy distribution, or something that starts with a bang but then, sort of, fizzles out very quickly.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Run out of gas

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    Do you, English, have a proverb (or a saying, or an idiom) describing a situation when someone runs out of gas too early or lacks the drive to continue with something he has just started or is about to start.. Ran out of steam
    That looks superficially apt (in that it's about steam), but someone who runs out of steam has been doing a good job for some time beforehand - whereas the steamboat analogy in the original is about someone only getting up enough steam to make noises.


    b


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #7

    Re: Run out of gas

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    That looks superficially apt (in that it's about steam), but someone who runs out of steam has been doing a good job for some time beforehand - whereas the steamboat analogy in the original is about someone only getting up enough steam to make noises.


    b
    But Bob, this seems to say exactly what I suggested:
    all the steam went into the whistle (meaning a steam-boat just about to start) - the implication is that the whistle was so powerful or, rather, that there was so little "steam" that none is left to actually begin the journey


    • Join Date: Aug 2006
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    #8

    Re: Run out of gas

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    But Bob, this seems to say exactly what I suggested:
    all the steam went into the whistle (meaning a steam-boat just about to start) - the implication is that the whistle was so powerful or, rather, that there was so little "steam" that none is left to actually begin the journey
    I think what Bob is saying, Anglika, is that the English idiom, "I've run out of steam" doesn't carry the negative implications that the idiom of Black Velvet's language does. Even a hard worker can run out of steam.

    "Phewwww, I'm gonna quit for the day. I've [plumb] run out of steam.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #9

    Re: Run out of gas

    I wonder if it is possible to say that something is "out of steam/gas" from the beginning.. ?
    Whould the phrase carry the negative connotation in question - meaning a failed start-up?

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Run out of gas

    Quote Originally Posted by black_velvet View Post
    I wonder if it is possible to say that something is "out of steam/gas" from the beginning.. ?
    W[no h]ould the phrase carry the negative connotation in question - meaning a failed start-up?
    There is the idiom 'to work up/develop/get/have a head of steam' (which anyone or any enterprise must do before starting - a 'head of steam' is enough energy to perform effectively). But that has no negative connotation.

    b

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