Level 2 idioms – Unit 02


Maria:  Did you hear that my brother has decided to drop out of school?

Sam:  You’re pulling my leg.  Has he really?

Maria:   Yes.  I told him he was better off staying, but he doesn’t listen to me.

Sam:  Maybe he’s feeling burned out.  After all, he has a heavy load this term.

Maria:  He told me he was looking into joining the army.

Sam:  That doesn’t make sense.  Doesn’t he realize that once he joins the army, he can’t

back out?  I know he can’t do without his freedom.

Maria:  I agree.  I don’t think much of his idea either.  Maybe we should have a talk with him.

Sam:  That’s a good idea.  I think he just wants to be on his own, but he’s going about it the wrong way.

Maria:  Let’s see if we can talk him into finishing grade 12.

Click on the audio recording  below to hear the lesson.


heavy load:  a large amount of work to do
realize:  understand, know


drop out (of)                                           stop attending (classes/meetings)
pull one’s leg                                          joke with someone
better off                                                 better than before
burn out                                                   become completely exhausted
look into                                                   investigate to find information
make sense (of)                                    be logical / understand logically
back out (of)                                          withdraw from, not do
do without (something)                 be able to live without (something)
not think much of (something)  think (something) is not very good
on one’s own                                         by oneself, alone
go about                                                   plan a way to do (something)
talk (someone) into                           persuade, convince (someone to do something)


Drop out is used with ‘of’ if there is an object after it.  If not, then there is no ‘of.’
Example:  I haven’t seen Bill at the chess club for weeks.  He must have dropped out.

Look into and find out have the same meaning.

Make sense is used 2 ways.  It means to be logical, as used in the dialogue.
It also means to understand logically and must be used with ‘of’.
Example:  I can’t make sense of this recipe.  Could you help?

Talk (someone) into has an opposite:  Talk (someone) out of, which means “convince (someone) not to (do something).
Example:  I wanted to go swimming, but she talked me out of it because she wanted to go shopping

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© 2004 Ambien Malecot

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