Thursday, January 21, 2010

right off hand

Today's expression has the same meaning as yesterday's. Like right off the bat, right off hand or simply off hand means thinking of something to say right now or right away. We can use the same examples we had yesterday and use off hand instead. So if you can't think of anything to say or think of an example to give right now, you can say, "I can't think of anything off hand," or "I can't think of one right off hand."

like this:

A: Do you know who RSVP'd for the party tonight?
B: I have a list upstairs. I know the president and the vice president are coming, but I can't think of the others right off hand. There are about 30 people on the list.
A: Really. I'm thinking of not going. I'm completely wiped out right now.
B: You should go; it'd be fun. Besides, the boss says she expects everyone to show up or else ...
A: Or else what?
B: I can't remember exactly what she said off hand, but it was something to the effect that she'll keep it in mind when they're giving out raises.
A: Wow. They're really taking this event seriously.
B: You're telling me.

right off the bat - right now; right away (see yesterday's blog)
RSVP - reserve a place for a future gathering (often a formal event)
wiped out - exhausted; very tired
a raise - an increase in salary
You're telling me. - I agree with you. Absolutely.

Alright folks, do you know the phone numbers of all your friends right off the bat or right off hand, or do you have to look them up?

Good luck, and enjoy the weekend.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

right off the bat

Happy New Year everyone! Here we are again after a long break. Our next expression often has to do with quick thinking. Thinking of something to say right off the bat means thinking of something to say right away or right now. Sometimes it's easy to think of an example or a funny story right off the bat. At other times, however, it's not as easy. It's, therefore, quite common to say "I can't think of anything right off the bat." This means that even though there are plenty of examples of certain jokes or inexpensive but great restaurants or other things that you're talking about, you just can't think of any right now.

like this:

A: What's the name of that Thai restaurant on 9th avenue between 48th and 49th?
B: I know which one you're talking about, but I can't think of the name right off the bat.
A: I want to recommend it to Tom and Andrea for their anniversary. The prices are reasonable and the food's really good.
B: I agree. It's very tiny and cozy. I would recommend one of the duck dishes, but I can't remember the name. Have you tried it? It's the one where the duck is really crispy.
A: I can't think of it right off the bat, but I know which one you're talking about. Anyway, I'm sure they'll enjoy it.

Alright folks, I'm glad you're still checking us out. I hope I can get back to posting twice a week. Also watch out for a new and improved version of our website: It's under development right now. When it debuts, it will have exercises that will allow you to practice the expressions you've learned on this blog. ... and of course, I will make an announcement once it's ready.

Until next time,