AMERICAN IDIOMS (C)
Idioms starting with C
Here is our list of popular "C" idioms that are used in American English:
1) Prediction: Example: "That was a good call on the weather. It rained just like you said that It would."
. 2) Decision: Example: "Where do you want to eat. Person 2: It's your call."
(To) call it a day:
To end work and go home. Example: "Let's call it a day. It's getting late."
Call the shots:
To make decisions, to be in charge. Example: "I call the shots around here!"
(To) carry a tune:
To be able to sing on key (accurately). Example: "She has an awful voice! She can't carry a tune."
Money. Example: "You got any cash on you?"
(To) cash in on something:
To profit from something. Example: "The actor wanted to cash in on his popularity by opening a restaurant."
When talking about wives, husbands, girlfriends, etc., people sometimes say "He's quite a catch" or "She's quite a catch", which means that the person in question is (or would be) a great partner (usually because of his/her personality, money, or looks).
(To) catch someone's eye:
To get someone's attention through eye contact.
Catch some rays (v.):
To sunbathe; To go suntanning.
Check out (v.):
1) To see ("Let's check out that new movie!"
) 2) To take a look at ("Check out this cool website!", "Check out that girl!"
Cheap, tacky. Examples: "A cheesy pick-up line", "A cheesy song".
Young woman, girl, etc. (This term is considered derogatory (offensive) by some, so if you're not sure, don't use it.)
Chill out (v.):
To relax. Example: "Chill out! Why are you getting so worked up over this?"
A distinctive person; someone with a lot of class.
(A) clean bill of health:
A report from the doctor that one's health is good; good results from a doctor's medical examination. Example: "I went in for my yearly physical and got a clean bill of health from Dr. Jones."
(To) clear the table:
To remove all dishes, cutlery, etc. from a table after a meal. Example: "You clear the table and I'll do the dishes."
(A) close call:
Most often used in the past tense, this can be said of something that almost caused a very dangerous or bad situation. Example: "That was a close call! The train almost hit the motorbike."
From the Atlantic to the Pacific coast in the United States. Example: "Our car made the coast-to-coast trip in 70 hours".
(To) come away empty handed:
To return without anything. To expect to receive something but to end up receiving nothing. Example: "The union workers came away empty handed from the negotiations."
(To) come to an end:
To finish; to stop. Example: "When the road came to an end, we turned left."
(To) come out of the closet:
To reveal that one is gay. Example: "The Republican senator shocked his constituents last June by coming out of the closet."
Come to think of it:
I just remembered. Example: "Hey, come to think of it, I do have a sleeping bag you can borrow."
(To) come up short:
To not quite achieve one's goal. Example: "The students tried to raise $1,000 for the school play, but they came up short."
Come what may
Whatever happens. No matter what happens.
nice, great, impressive. Example: "a cool dress", "a cool guy", "a cool bar."
Cool down (v.) :
Relax, calm down after an argument, etc. Example: "Give him a couple of days to cool down before you call him."
Police officer. Example: "My brother is a cop."
Copycat (noun or adjective)
Used to refer to someone who imitates/mimics another person, usually used with a negative connotation.
Couch potato :
Someone who spends most of his/her time sitting on the couch, watching TV.
(To) cover a lot of ground:
To go through a lot of information. Example: "We've covered a lot of ground in my English class in the past two months."
(To) cover for someone:
To make excuses for someone or to conceal someone's errors. Example: "He asked me to cover to him while he ran out to talk to his girlfriend."
(At the) crack of dawn:
Right at dawn (when the sun comes up). Example: "Whe hit the road at the crack of dawn."
Crack open (v.):
In this phrase, the "crack" is only used to emphasize the process of opening. Example: "Crack open a bottle of champagne! It's time to celebrate!" (Open a bottle of champagne! It's time to celebrate!)
Crank up (v.):
To crank something up means to increase it's volume (significantly) Example: "Crank it up, man! I love that song!"
To sleep. To go to bed. Example: "Do you think I can crash here tonight?"
(To) cramp someone's style:
To limit someone in some way. To limit someone from expressing themselves fully. Example: "Get lost. You're cramping my style!"
An unpleasantly weird/strange person. Example: "I don't like Tom. He's a bit of a creep."
Unpleasantly weird; something that makes you feel uneasy. Example: "That's a creepy song."
Embarrassing. A short form of "cringe-worthy". Example: "My mom's speech was cringe."
Bad. *somewhat outdated*
(To) cry one's eyes out:
To cry hard. Example: "When her grandfather died, she cried her eyes out for three days straight."
Comfortably easy. Example: "A cushy job."
(To) cut class:
To not go to class. To skip going to class. Example: "Jacob was a very bad student. He was always cutting class to go smoke with his buddies."
Cut (a deal) (v.):
To negotiate a deal; To compromise; to make a deal. Example: "Let's cut a deal. I'll let you use the car if you help around the house."
(A) cut above (something):
Superior/ better (than something). Example: "The commercial claimed that this car company was a cut above the rest."
(To not) cut it:
To not be enough; to be insufficient. Example: "In this case, saying 'sorry' just doesn't cut it." (Saying 'sorry' is not enough.)
(To) cut loose:
To act without restraint, without holding back. Example: "I just want to cut loose this weekend."