AE 515: 13 x Hand Expressions + TEST

Learn Australian English in this episode of The Aussie English Podcast where I teach you 13 HAND EXPRESSIONS in English and give you a test at the end too.

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AE 515: 13 x Hand Expression + English Test

G’day, guys! What’s going on? I am Pete, the host of Aussie English and today I want to teach you a whole bunch of expressions to do with the hand. Let’s go!

Alright, so, number one, guys: is to live hand-to-mouth. To live hand-to-mouth. This means to live with the bare minimum of food of money of whatever resource it may be and to have none left over afterwards, to have none spare. For example: While studying at university I really lived hand-to-mouth. I’m still living hand-to-mouth even with this new promotion.

Number two: to be caught red-handed right? The idea there being you have blood on your hands because you have been caught in the act of doing something wrong or committing a crime. So, for example, the examiner caught the student cheating red-handed on the exam. I caught my son red-handed taking a cookie out of the cookie jar.

Number three: Second hand. Second hand. If you get something second hand, you’re getting it and it’s not new. It’s not brand new, it’s second hand, someone else has owned that before you so, for example, I’m going to buy a second-hand car. Did you get that jumper second hand from the op shop?

Number four: to give someone a hand, to give someone a hand, this means to assist someone with something they’re doing. Could you give me a hand with this heavy couch? I can’t really lift it on my own. I’m gonna give James a hand with his car on the weekend. We’re gonna repair it.

Number five: to be good with your hands. To be good with your hands. That one tends to be pretty obvious, but it’s usually used to mean that you are skilful with your hands when making something or when repairing something. Dave works as a plumber and has always been good with his hands. If you’re good with your hands, can you help me fix my broken camera?

Number six: at hand. To be at hand. I guess that’s you can reach that thing if it’s at hand, right? So, it is to be close by or to be readily accessible, you can get to it. So, for example, I’ll ring up the police and see if they have an officer at hand to investigate this crime. Do you have your mobile phone at hand?

Number seven: to wash your hands of something. To wash your hands of something. This means that you refuse to have anything more to do with something and it can be someone as well.  After our fight, I washed my hands of Peter and I want nothing more to do with him. She washed her hands of cigarettes years ago, hasn’t touched a smoke since.

Number eight: to have your hands tied. To have your hands tied. If you have your hands tied, it is that you are unable to act freely and you have to follow the rules or abide by the law. The cop pulled me over and wanted to let me go, but his hands were tired and he had to give me the fine. The judge says her hands are tied and the law requires a harsh sentence.

Number nine: to know something like the back of your hand. If you know something like the back of your hand or more specifically if you know a place like the back of your hand, it is that you know that thing incredibly well, right? You would imagine you know the back of your hand pretty, well better than anyone else. I’ve lived in Melbourne my whole life and I know the place like the back of my hand. She knows this neighbourhood like the back of her hand.

Number ten: hands down! Hands down. This means easily and decisively, right? So, will usually use this when talking about the most extreme something, the best thing, the worst thing, right? For example: this restaurant is hands down the worst restaurant I’ve ever eaten at. The Matrix is hands-down the best film we’ve ever seen.

Number eleven: to take matters into your own hands. To take matters into your own hands. This means to deal with a problem yourself because the person who was meant to be dealing with it was unable to do so. After the police gave up the investigation, we decided to take matters into our own hands. I might have to take matters into my own hands. If you don’t deal with your misbehaving son.

Number 12: on one hand… on the other hand… So, we use on one hand or on the one hand to introduce a statement that we’re then going to compare to an opposite statement usually or a contrasting statement on the other hand. For example:

on one hand, I want to go to the party tonight, but on the other hand I have to study. On one hand, she wants to go to the gym and get fit, on the other hand, she’s too busy with work.

The very last one, guys, the very last one, number thirteen is: first-hand, and you can also hear this as second-hand and third-hand, fourth-hand etc. So, when we use first hand this usually means directly it’s happened to you directly. So, you’ll hear something first hand, you will learn something first hand, you will see something first hand and that means that you personally did that thing. If it’s second hand, it’s that you did so through someone else. If someone tells you a rumour about someone else, you’ve heard that rumour second hand or you’ve heard that information second hand through someone else and not the direct source, ok? So, examples: when the dog growled at the girl, she learned first-hand not to pull its tail. I heard second hand that Bill’s going to divorce his wife. So, there you go guys. There you go!

Those are 13 expressions that you can use that are related to the body part the hand. They’re very common, they’re very useful! So, learn those and if you have a video that you would like me to do in the future on expressions like this surrounding a theme, make sure to comment below and let me know which you would like me to do. And also, don’t forget to hit that like button and subscribe to see more videos like this. Thanks for joining me, guys. See you soon!

Let’s review with the test. I’ll show you the question followed by the answer if you need more time pause the video. Good job guys, well done! I hope you scored well, and I’ll see you next time.

****

Let’s review with a test!

I’ll show you the question followed by the answer. If you need more time, pause the video.

 

  1. If you’re comparing two contrasting things you use the expression _______.

 

  1. On the one hand, on the other hand
  2. Hands are tied

 

If you’re comparing two contrasting things you use the expression on the one hand, on the other hand.

 

  1. If you only make enough money for the bare necessities in life, you __________.

 

  1. Live hand to mouth
  2. Give someone a hand

 

If you only make enough money for the bare necessities in life, you live hand to mouth.

 

  1. If you decide to deal with a problem because the person who should have dealt with it has failed to, you have _______.

 

  1. Taken matters into your own hands
  2. Your hands tied

 

If you decide to deal with a problem because the person who should have dealt with it has failed to, you have taken matters into your own hands.

 

  1. If something is easily and decisively the best, it’s ______ the best.

 

  1. Hands down
  2. At hand

 

If something is easily and decisively the best, it’s hands down the best.

 

  1. If you know a location incredibly well, you ______.

 

  1. Know it like the back of your hand
  2. Take matters into your own hands

 

If you know a location incredibly well, you know it like the back of your hand.

 

  1. If you catch someone in the middle of committing a crime you _________.

 

  1. Wash your hands of them
  2. Caught them red-handed

 

If you catch someone in the middle of committing a crime you caught them red-handed.

 

  1. If someone or something you need is readily accessible, it’s _______.

 

  1. At hand
  2. Second-hand

 

If someone or something you need is readily accessible, it’s at hand.

 

  1. If you are amazing at repairing or making things, you are ________.

 

  1. At hand
  2. Good with your hands

 

If you are amazing at repairing or making things, you are good with your hands.

 

  1. If you learn information directly from the source, you’ve learnt it _______.

 

  1. Hands down
  2. First-hand

 

If you learn information directly from the source, you’ve learnt it first-hand.

 

  1. If you assist someone with something, you ________.

 

  1. Give them a hand
  2. Are good with your hands

 

If you assist someone with something, you give them a hand.

 

  1. If you have to follow the law even if you don’t want to, your ________.

 

  1. Hands down
  2. Hands are tied

 

If you have to follow the law even if you don’t want to, your hands are tied.

 

  1. If you buy something that isn’t brand new, you’ve bought it _______.

 

  1. First-hand
  2. Second-hand

 

If you buy something that isn’t brand new, you’ve bought it second-hand.

 

  1. If you no longer want anything to do with someone, you’ve ______.

 

  1. Washed your hands of them
  2. Caught them red handed

 

If you no longer want anything to do with someone, you’ve washed your hands of them.

****

Good job, guys! Well done! I hope you scored well and I’ll see you next time!


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