English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List of Idioms - W
|on the wagon||Someone who is
on the wagon is no longer drinking
No wine for me please - I'm on the wagon.
|wait for the cat to jump||
If you wait for the cat to jump, or
to see which way the cat jumps, you
delay taking action until you see how events
will turn out.
Let's wait for the cat to jump before we decide.
A person who plays a waiting game
delays taking any action or making any
decision because they prefer to wait and see
how things develop, usually in the hope that
this will put them in a stronger position.
Our competitors are not reacting. They're playing a waiting game.
|waiting for a raindrop in the drought||When someone is waiting for a
raindrop in the drought, they are
waiting and hoping for something that has
little chance of happening.
For many people, finding a job these days is like waiting for a raindrop in the drought.
|waiting in the wings||If someone is waiting in the wings,
they are waiting for an opportunity to take
action, especially to replace someone else
in their job or position.
There are many young actors waiting in the wings ready to show their talent.
|walk all over someone||If one person walks all over another,
they treat them very badly or unkindly,
especially by showing no consideration for
their cares or needs.
You must learn to defend yourself. Don't let him walk all over you!
|walk of life||A person's profession or position in
society is known as their walk of life.
There were people from all walks of life among the protesters.
|walk on air||When you are happy or excited because of
a pleasant event that makes you feel as if
you were floating, you are walking on
Sophie has been walking on air since her painting won first prize.
|walk and chew gum||If you can walk and chew gum
(at the same time), you are able to do more
than one thing at a time.
(This expression is often used negatively to indicate incompetence)
Why did you hire that guy? He can't walk and chew gum at the same time!
|walk on eggshells||If you walk on eggshells with
someone, you are careful not to hurt or
She's so sensitive, you have to walk on eggshells with her all the time.
|walk into lion's den||If you walk into the lion's den,
you find yourself in a difficult situation
in which you have to face unfriendly or
After the failure of the negotiations, he had to walk into the lion's den and face the Press.
|good walls make good neighbours||This expression means that respecting
one another's privacy helps create a good
relationship between neighbours.
We try not to disturb the people next door. Good walls make good neighbours.
|walk a tightrope||If a person is walking a tightrope,
they are in a difficult or delicate
situation where they must act carefully.
The management is walking a tightrope in their efforts both to keep the costs down and satisfy the trade unions.
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