Start making your English more powerful by using figurative expressions.

In this episode Max is going to explain to us all how using idioms in spoken English can really help you connect more to people and sound a lot more fluent. Also, we will be testing our newest section, Killer Quotes! Learn popular expressions and get improve your pronunciation with clips from movies and TV series.

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Words You’ll Learn

  • Pumping iron- to lift weights at the gym
  • Lathering- rubbing soap to make it bubbly
  • Pisco- traditional drink from Peru/Chile
  • Caipirinha- traditional drink from Brail
  • Hold the fort down- to protect something and
  • Laymen’s terms- a simplified version of something
  • Idiomatic- when something doesn’t have a literal meaning
  • Pull out of your hat- to do something as if it was magic
  • In a nutshell- a summarize explanation
  • Jump on the band wagon- get involved in something because everyone else is
  • Bit off more than you can chew- to accept too many task and not have time to do them
  • Think outside the box- to not be constrained with your creativity
  • A blessing in disguise- an unexpected opportunity
  • When all hell breaks loose- when a situation becomes chaotic
  • Don’t jump the gun- to do something too early without thinking carefully
  • To leave someone hanging- to leave an audience wanting more
  • Cut someone some slack- to not be so strict with someone

Shout Outs

  • 5 Star iTunes Review : Emron from Canada- Absolutely useful”
  • RealLife English Coordinators from Belo Horizonte Brazil: Allyson, Bianca, Pricilla, Camila, Tiago, Aww Yeah!!

Leave us a review and get a shoutout in a future episode!
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Kickass Quote

  • “If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself” –Albert Einstein

Conversation Topic

  • Learn about the benefits of learning and using idiomatic expressions in while speaking English. Max guides us through a handful of common expressions that he has been collecting over time for his upcoming e-book.

Killer Clip

  • Learn all the different ways to use the phrasal verb TAKE OUT with a funny clip from the movie “The Interview.”

Weekly Challenge

  • Find 3 idioms that you like and make examples of those expressions. Examples used will be featured in Max’s FREE E-book which we will give to all of our listeners. Just post the expressions in the comments below.

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Song: Franz Ferdinand “Take Me Out”


So if you’re lonely
You know I’m here waiting for you
I’m just a crosshair
I’m just a shot away from you
And if you leave here
You leave me broken, shattered, I lie
I’m just a crosshair
I’m just a shot, then we can die

I know I won’t be leaving here with you

I say don’t you know
You say you don’t know
I say… take me out!

I say you don’t show
Don’t move, time is slow
I say… take me out!

I say you don’t know
You say you don’t know
I say… take me out!

If I move this could die
If eyes move this could die
I want you…to take me out!

I know I won’t be leaving here (with you)
I know I won’t be leaving here
I know I won’t be leaving here (with you)
I know I won’t be leaving here with you

I say don’t you know?
You say you don’t know
I say take me out

If I wane, this can die
If I wane, this can die
I want you to take me out

If I move, this could die
If eyes move, this could die
Come on, take me out

I know I won’t be leaving here
I know I won’t be leaving here
I know I won’t be leaving here
I know I won’t be leaving here with you

 Return to RealLife English ESL Podcasts

  • Juhapekka says:

    My three idioms are:

    Hit a rough patch.
    Haven’t the foggiest.
    Hit rock bottom.

    And respective examples including in following dialogs that I came up with:

    -Have you any idea how you can come up with the solution in your difficult situation?
    -Haven’t the foggiest. To be honest with you, I’ve hit a bit of a rough patch lately and I can’t think clearly. Hopefully my situation won’t get worse and it’s even possible that I’ll hit rock bottom but I really hope it’s not going to happen.

    -Have you the foggiest what the expression “Haven’t the foggiest” could mean?
    -Yeah, I have. Your question was already self-explanatory. “Haven’t the foggiest” is simply the metaphor where you didn’t have even the smallest clue as if your thoughts would be clouded by a thick fog but you wouldn’t have even that kind of the foggiest clue what something is all about if you really don’t have the foggiest. I realized its meaning immediately. I’m such a clever guy and I have one of the sharpest intellects in the world and that’s why I haven’t ever hit even a tiny little bit of a rough patch in my life.
    -Yep. You guessed it correctly but don’t be so sure about it that you don’t encounter insurmountable problems later in your life. You can even hit rock bottom if you are too self-confident and arrogant.

    I would have also included the idiom about dodgy eggs but I didn’t remember it anymore and I didn’t find the idiom from the internet. I’d appreciate if someone told the whole idiom about dodgy eggs.

    • Justin says:

      Hey Juhapekka, Those are awesome idioms you used there. Three of my favorites. About dodgy eggs, I’ve never heard that one before and I couldn’t find it on the internet, but here’s a link to an explanation of the idiom, BAD EGG–

      Cheers and thanks for your participation!

  • Abhi says:

    My three favorite idioms are:

    1. Piece of cake – Playing guitar is a piece of cake for him.

    2. dawned on me – I was hanging out with my friends and it suddenly dawned on me that I had to attend the class.

    3. all of a sudden – We were playing soccer on the ground and all of a sudden it started to rain.

    • Justin says:

      Hey Abhi, Thanks for sharing! I love the “Piece of Cake” one! I don’t know if “all of the sudden” is an idiomatic expression, but it’s an excellent phrase to communicate with.

  • Max Ahumada says:

    Thanks Juhapekka and Abhi. You'll soon see these expressions on the eBook.

  • Challenge accepted!
    1 – English fluency is a hot potato.
    2 – I haven't yet reached the english fluency so let's go back to the drawing board.
    3 – What we want, folks? Fluency!!! And when we want? At a drop of a hat!!!
    4 – Stop to beat around the bush and explain me what means beat around the bush!!
    5 – Listen to podcasts to learn English is a best thing since sliced bread, because It's like the real life.
    Thank's a lot guys. I hope you enjoy it, and most important, I hope this help a lot of people.

  • nataly says:

    I’ll do my best:
    1. Last week, a thief was caught red-handed while trying to break into Mathew’s house.
    2. The boy would give his right arm to find his favorite soccer ball.
    3. I wanted to see “The cobbler ” movie last Sunday, but the line in the cinema was as long as your arm.
    4. Hey, Mike , I’ll win the lottery, aha! , and I think cows can fly.
    5. I was sick and I couldn’t go to the real life meetup. Don’t rub salt in the wound by telling me how great it was.
    Thanks guys ,for this Real life Radio #90. Keep it up! :)-

    • Justin says:

      Hey Nataly, Great to hear from you and I loved your idioms. Great use especially of #1 and #5- I love these ones (caught red-handed/ rub salt on the wound.) I’m not familiar with “I think cows can fly” but I have heard “when pigs fly.” Thanks again for sharing and supporting us!

  • Nataly says:

    Hi Justin, now I’m having second thoughts about #4, I heard it in the series of How I met your mother, Robbin said that. Anyway, both are too heavy pigs and cows hahaha.

    I’m going to look up for the correct one. Have an excellent weekend. :)-

  • Abdul says:

    hey guysss awww yeaah when it comes to idiom then the ball in my court I will let my freak flag fly and show you some super duper idioms I went extra mile to give you the most brilliant ones I’ve left no stone unturned until I found these awesome idioms I hope I hit the nail on the head 😉 here we go !! let’s get our feet wet

    1- Egghead ( I think Jane will do well in her finals she’s always been a kind of egghead from elementary school all the way through college )

    2- Feeling under the weather ( I think I’m going to take the day off work , I feel quite under the weather today .

    3-Itchy feet ( seeing a boat or a plane always gives me itchy feet and makes me feel homesick

    • Justin says:

      Aww yeah, Abdul! Thanks for response and participation. That’s some pretty impressive use of idioms there, all in one paragraph! Keep on rocking it!