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    #1

    to keep one's powder dry?

    Dear Teachers,

    I read these from The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody by Will Cuppy:

    1. About Captain John Smith:
    "As he grew older, he met more and more John Smiths and it seemed as though practically everybody was named John Smith. He decided that he would do something so startling that people could tell him from other people. In those days you could do that."

    Does "that" in the end of this paragraph refer to "do something startling" or "tell him from other people"? And what does the author mean by saying this?

    2. "Kings and Queens enjoy themselves more than you may imagine. They have a lot on their minds, to use a convenient term, but they manage to get their fun just the same."

    What does "to use a convenient term" mean?

    3. "History relates that Queen Victoria tucked her napkin under her chin - she was built that way."

    What does "she was built that way" mean?

  1. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: to keep one's powder dry?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eway View Post
    Dear Teachers,

    I read these from The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody by Will Cuppy:

    1. About Captain John Smith:
    "As he grew older, he met more and more John Smiths and it seemed as though practically everybody was named John Smith. He decided that he would do something so startling that people could tell him from other people. In those days you could do that."

    Does "that" in the end of this paragraph refer to "do something startling" Yes. or "tell him from other people"? And what does the author mean by saying this? We don't know, because you haven't told us what he did that was so startling.

    2. "Kings and Queens enjoy themselves more than you may imagine. They have a lot on their minds, to use a convenient term, but they manage to get their fun just the same."

    What does "to use a convenient term" mean? "Have a lot on their mnds" is a common phrase, so he's using it, but he wants us to understand that he isn't actually certain that kings and queens have minds.

    3. "History relates that Queen Victoria tucked her napkin under her chin - she was built that way."

    What does "she was built that way" mean? Her body design accommodated a napkin under her chin.
    Old pistols and muskets had little pans of gunpowder next to their hammers, exposed to the air. That meant that the weapons could not be used in the rain, because wet gunpowder doesn't work.

    To keep your powder dry is to be prepared.
    Last edited by Charlie Bernstein; 17-Mar-2009 at 14:23.

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