19 Dec

slice and dice

Who taught: Jessy and Today show

Slice and dice (source: http://csassignment3.wordpress.com/)

Two days a week, Jessy gives me a ride to my work. Today was one of those days. On our way to my work today, Jessy asked me a question, “Hey! Do you know what ‘slice and dice’ means?”

Having a career in the information technology area, I have known the expression for a while. So, I was able to answer, telling Jessy the definition of the expression.

However, the way I remember this expression has nothing to do with my career. I think of this expression, imagining myself slicing and dicing a cucumber for salad so that I can eat the pieces of the cucumber easily.

Jessy said, “I heard that expression this Morning, watching the Today show. On the show, a reporter said,’When it comes to checking a return policy, slicing and dicing is better.'”

You know that this does not mean that you are physically cutting the return policy horizontally and vertically. That would not be a good idea. You would lose your receipt.

Oh.. Whenever I think of this expression, another word comes to my mind. It is “scrutinize.” What do you think? Pretty close, right? When you slice and dice a return policy, that means basically you are scrutinizing it so that you can keep yourself from being caught in a bad situation.

Now, I have always thought this expression has a negative connotation. Slicing and dicing is like being too picky about things. What do you think? Am I right? Enlighten me, my friends!

08 Aug

dog days

Who taught: Al

Dog Days (source : http://literatehousewife.com/)

There are some expressions that are sort of universal. I have a hunch that today’s expression is one of them and you can easily understand what it means as you hear or speak.

A few days ago, I was watching Today show on NBC and Al, as always, was talking about the weather. On his background, there was a map of the United States. And, it marked the Southern states as “dog days,” with red color. Well, I had not heard of this expression but it totally made sense to me. Why? I don’t know. It just feels like it is universal. So familiar. Maybe, we do have a similar expression in Korea.

As I research about this expression, I realize that the origin goes far back than what I thought it would be. It was used by the Greeks and the Romans.

The name comes from the ancient belief that Sirius, also called the Dog Star, in close proximity to the sun was responsible for the hot weather.

This is very good to know and makes you sound very knowledgable, right? But, I like this version of definition that I found from Urban Dictionary.

Time in the summer where it is so hot or humid that the dogs go crazy by barking or howling.

A few days ago, it was totally dog days of summer here in PGH. It is much better now. Hope this cooler temp stays for a while!

Here is a piece of advice for you. Eat watermelons this Summer. Not only is it a great hydrator during summer fun, it also helps to reduce your chances of getting burned while you play outdoors this summer due to it’s high volume of lycopene.

27 Jul

tatas and twins

Who taught: Today show

Tatas (source: http://peoplethatshoulddieandrotinhell.wordpress.com/)

Some English words or expressions sound cute to me. Like tatas. Well, sounds cute before I get to know what it means.

As Jessy and I have breakfast, we usually watch or listen to Today show on NBC. A few days ago, one of the topics was related with a part of women’s body. Wanna give it a try to guess what it is? That is what tatas mean. Pay attention to the fact that it is plural. What part of women’s body is two and kind of symmetric? I mean there are a few but there is something very obvious. Do you get it?

That’s right! They are breasts on a female. Also, it looks like they have to be large to be called tatas. How big? I do not know. But I guess it is all subjective. There are of course bunch of synonyms. Do I know all? Not at all! But I do know one more which is twins. Now, you would say, “What? Twins? Twins are just twins. What else it could mean.” Huh! You are not correct. This could mean something else and one of them is breasts.

Twins can also mean balls on a male, assuming that you know what balls mean. (FYI, balls mean testicles.) It is all contextual. Usually, if a guy says twins, it probably means balls whereas it would mean breasts when a woman says it. Wait! I might be wrong. It would be the other way around.

Now maybe they are not really cute any more.

My American friends, what else could mean breasts or balls?

01 Jul

hazy and hazing

Who taught: Today show

Hazy morning (source: http://www.redbubble.com/)

Do you check weather often? How often? I usually check it at least one time per day, especially in the morning. One of the words I hear very often these days from a meteorologist is hazy. Do you know what haze is? Here is a definition for you.

an aggregation in the atmosphere of very fine, widely dispersed, solid or liquid particles, or both, giving the air an opalescent appearance that subdues colors.

It usually happens in summer morning and I kind of like it because it makes me feel kind of calm. So, till today, this has been the only definition that I know in relation to haze or hazy.

Well, of course, there is another definition. This is always hard. How come one word can mean two or more? Even worse is that they are totally different. I think ‘haze’ is a perfect example of this case.

Today, I heard a really sad news from NBC’s Today show. George Desdunes, a Cornell University sophomore, died on Feb 25, 2011. He was tied, duct-taped and forced by his friends to drink too much alcohol during a hazing ritual of a fraternity. I remember similar rituals existed in Korea when I was a college student. I have always thought why people force other people to do something, especially drinking. I do not understand at all.

Now, here is another definition of the word, haze, in this context.

to subject (freshmen, newcomers, etc.) to abusive or humiliating tricks and ridicule.

This definition tells me everything. It is ridiculous. This could be even worse than bullying. Hope this would stop soon!

I like hazy morning but hate night with hazing.