07 April 2009

Idioms & Slang: Chicken

From the word chicken comes many idiomatic expressions in English! Here are a few: 

I often feel I work for chicken feed; I really don’t get paid much. I work very long hours and have to start early in the morning so I’m often accused of going to bed with the chickens. But if I want to be fresh, I need to go to bed early. It’s hard to keep a work schedule like this because I’m not as young as I used to be; I’m no spring chicken! It is often so chaotic at work and we are so very busy that we often seem to run around like a chicken with it's head cut off. We always have a lot of problems at work but that’s life and as they say, if it ain’t chickens, its feathers! Sometimes my colleagues can really get on my nerves and make me as mad as wet hen!

Other fun expressions:

to chicken out (of something) / to chicken out on someone : to decide not to do something for or with someone, to manage to get out of something out of fear or cowardice
Come on! Don't chicken out now! Freddy chickened out of the plan at the last minute.
Come on, don't chicken out on me now! Ken chickened out on us and won't be going with us!

chickens come home to roost : a proverb that says you have to face the consequences of your mistakes or your bad deeds; the bad or silly things you did in the past are beginning to cause problems
There was too much greed in the past, and now the chickens are coming home to roost with crime and corruption soaring.
don’t count your chickens (before they’re hatched): something that you say in order to warn someone to wait until a good thing they are expecting has really happened before they make any plans about it
You might be able to get a loan from the bank, but don't count your chickens.
to play chicken: to do something dangerous in order to see who becomes frightened first and stops
The two boys were playing chicken in the schoolyard.
handwriting like chicken scratch: handwriting that is very difficult to read
I don’t know how the pharmacist can read my doctor’s handwriting! It’s chicken scratch!
a hen party/night (British and Australia): a party for women only, especially one organized for a woman who is soon going get married.
Sarah decided to throw a hen party for her best friend who’s getting married next month.
be as scarce as hen’s teeth (Australian and American): to be very difficult or impossible to find
If you don’t book a hotel early in Strasbourg for the Christmas market, they’ll be as scarce as hen’s teeth!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave your comments or questions!!!