05 Apr

go by vs take

Who taught: Phil

Shoes car (source : http://highclearing.com/)

During winter, I play soccer with Phil and other friends every Monday. Since Phil lives close to me, he usually picks me up on his way to the sports complex where we play soccer. Yesterday, he was gonna pick me up as usual but then I realized that my soccer shoes are in my new house. (FYI, I bought a house and now I am in the middle of moving things. So, some are in my new house and some are in my old house.) So, I had to go to the new house to get them. On my way to Phil’s house, I called him.

Me : “Phil, I should be at your place in 5 minutes. Do you want to go by my car?” (I meant we want to use my car to go to the complex instead of using his car.)

Phil : “Sure, either way is fine. Seeya.”

So, I picked him up. And he said, “Hey Terry. You said, ‘go by my car’ when you called. I could understand what you meant but ‘go by my car’ sounds weird to me. I would say ‘take my car’ instead.”

After the game, I looked ‘go by’ up in a dictionary again. It means ‘to elapse or pass’ or ‘to pay a short visit.’  Let me give you examples!

1. to elapse : As time goes by, you will feel better.

2. to pay a short visit : Phil was not at home when I went by his place yesterday.

So, using a verb ‘go’ followed by ‘by’ has something to do with flow or passage. It does not have the feeling of using something for the purpose of transportion. My initial thought when I used ‘go by’ was ‘go’ means moving from one place to another place and ‘by’ means ‘a mean for something.’ As separate words this could be right but when they are used combined, the meaning is not as I thought.

What an easy word, take, to use? And, I was not able to find it when I needed it. This happens all the time, especially when I speak. Sometimes, I realize something is wrong right after I say it. Then, it is too late to correct it. That makes me feel somewhat frustrated. But, I know I need to get over it by speaking more and more which means I will make a lot of mistakes. Isn’t it so true that people learn from mistakes as long as we try to do our best to correct them.

Don’t you make this type of mistakes? What’s your story?

My friends! There is another thing I want to share with you. Today is my 10th wedding anniversary. Hope Jessy remembers this time! 🙂 Last year, she forgot. We have a small plan. We will have a steak with wine at our very first house. And, most importantly, I will buy a charcoal grill today to grill the steak.

23 Mar

on the ball

Who taught: Kathy

On the ball (source: http://www.choicehow.com)

One more week! Then, I will become a homeowner for the first time in my life. Not sure whether it is a good thing or not because many of my friends have told me, “Terry! You are getting yourself into a series of troubles but it is kind of fun.” I kind of get what they mean but it is still pretty exciting. About a month ago when I first singed on the sales agreement, I felt like I am just buying a thing, which is true. The only difference from the things I have ever bought so far is that I cannot take it with me. It is kind of irony. Isn’t it? Buy something that cannot be taken with you. Well, as time goes by to get closer to the closing date which is March 31, 2011, I feel that this is real. That house is mine and I will live in it soon.

But, it has not been just simple. Ever since I signed on the sales agreement, I have been very busy with home inspection and documents preparation, etc. What can I say? Nothing is easy in the world! During the process, I have been keeping in touch with a few different people and one of them is Kathy who works for my mortgage company. A few days ago, she asked me to buy a home insurance and keep her informed as the last step. So, I did it and sent an email where I put quote number and name and phone number of the sales agent I talked to, etc.

A few hours later, she sent me a response. It was very short. She said, “Boy! You are on the ball.”

When I first read it, I thought I was able to understand what she meant but not sure whether my feeling was right or not. One thing I can say, though, my feeling about a new expression is getting better and better. 🙂 So, my first feeling about the expression, on the ball, was “I am doing good.” To find out whether I am right or not, I googled it. Here is the meaning of the expression! “Well-informed and be in complete control.”

But, the more important part is its etymology. Where is it from? Doing my research, I found this forum in which you can find a lot of different stories about its origin. I will leave it up to your discretion. Being a huge soccer fan, my choice is that it is from soccer just like a English guy’s argument. Baseball is too small to have a feeling of being on the ball. Soccer ball is big enough to have my foot be on the ball. Hence, I can totally imagine that I am in full control over the ball by putting my foot on the soccer ball. I am sure you would have the same feeling if you’ve ever played soccer.

What do you think?

10 Oct

expressions in sports

Soccer (source : www.treehugger.com)

Are you a soccer fan? I love playing soccer. The winter league just started and I play soccer every Monday from Oct to Feb. Last Monday, I noticed a few expressions, playing soccer, that you might be interested in.

1. Sub!

This is not a sub that you would order at a restaurant, as you may imagine. 🙂

In the league games, there are 7 players in each team but we usually have around 18 people coming regularly. That means each team has two substitutes. When one player is trying to come out, then he/she says, “Sub,” to the people waiting. This is shortened version of substitute. There is no time during the game to say the full word. In fact, I have never heard anyone saying the full word when I play soccer.

2. Back or Front?

But then, when you sub, the person who will join the game would ask you, “Back or front?”, to you as he/she goes in. Why do you think he/she asks that question and what are the right answers? That is right! He/she wants to figure out the position you played and your answer would be like “Back center” or “Front right.” Well, how simple and short! Interestingly, this is exactly what happened to me last Monday. When I try to come out, saying “Sub!”, the guy who is going to go in asked me “Back or front?” Well, I did not get the meaning as quick as possible. Like 5 seconds later, I realized that what he meant when he asked that question but it was too late to answer. How stupid? I mean, it is such an easy question but I missed it (Honestly, I did not know whether he was talking to me or not.) and did not say anything to him when he asked it. The problem is this kind of conversation happens so fast and hard to catch up later once you miss it at the moment.

3. Got your back!

Speaking of back and front, there is another saying you can say during the game. “Got your back!” You can say this when anther player who is in front of you, having the ball, but cannot figure out how to go forward. If he heard you, chances are he will pass the ball to you.

4. It is all yours!

Can you guess when you can use this expression? Let me describe you the situation when you can use this. I was up front center and a midfielder passed the ball really well to me. Then, there is nobody who is blocking me and I got the ball under control. The only thing I need to do is calm down and put the ball into the goal. In that situation, all of my team players would be like, “Terry, it is all yours!” What do you think? Do you think I made that goal?