usingtherightwords

Guaranteed to improve your English

Up is Down, Down is Up


Up and down are opposites. Up means, among its many definitions, “in or into  a higher level or position.” Down means, among its many definitions, “toward or in a lower physical position.”

Yet sometimes in usage, they mean the same thing:

up the road/down the road

I’m down for that/I’m up for that

Sign me up for that/Put me down for that

wait up/slow down

beat yourself up/put yourself down

give up/step down

It’s up to you/It’s come down to you

Also, in golf, one gets “up and down” when one needs just two strokes to get one’s golf ball into the hole when the ball is resting around the green or in a greenside bunker.

My daughter suggested most of these, reminding me how sometimes “opposites attract.”

Until next time! Use the right words!

It’s here! My début book, “If You Experience Death, Please Call: And Other Fatal Mistakes We Make With Language” is available on Amazon for $14.95.  Order here.

leebarnathan.com

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May 19, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. In these phrases it is not the down and up that mean the same thing, but the phrases on the whole, one of which is not even correct. A person can be “down with that” or “up for that” but “down for” is not right. The first means in agreement with the second excited about. You can put someone’s name down for volunteering, but that means literally or figuratively adding their name to a list of people who will do something.

    Comment by Dorothy Hoffman | May 20, 2016 | Reply


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