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Thread: Need help with a few idioms

  1. #1
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    Need help with a few idioms

    What do these phrases mean, and how would you translate them into Russian? It's from the movie "Meet Joe Black".

    smell the thorns
    be out of [s:sem3ybky]the[/s:sem3ybky] line
    to be taking somebody from pillar to post
    to know chapter and verse about smth.
    to let the chips fall where they may
    ~ Мастерадминов Мастерадмин Мастерадминович ~

  2. #2
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    Re: Need help with a few idioms

    Maybe you should start a thread similar to Оля’s "The Search For John Gissing” and we’ll all have some fun instead of plunging into pointless political debates about who is nobler, stronger and more democratic.
    smell the thorns
    be out of the line
    to be taking somebody from pillar to post
    to know chapter and verse about smth.
    to let the chips fall where they may
    My guesses without looking it up:
    Чувствовать опасность (Увлечься чем-то, ощущая при этом скрытую опасность)
    Выходить за рамки
    Похоже на «из огня да в полымя» (какая разница как тебя сожгут - привязанным к столбу или к колонне)
    Знать до тонкостей (вплоть до номера главы и стиха в библии)
    Оставить всё как есть

  3. #3
    Administrator MasterAdmin's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with a few idioms

    Yeah, but there's a script for this movie already
    http://www.imsdb.com/scripts/Meet-Joe-Black.html

    And close captions on TV
    ~ Мастерадминов Мастерадмин Мастерадминович ~

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    Re: Need help with a few idioms

    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    Maybe you should start a thread similar to Оля’s "The Search For John Gissing” and we’ll all have some fun
    I obviously can't help with the Russian part... however, I did pull up a copy of the script http://www.awesomefilm.com/script/meetjoeblack.txt and have found what I believe are the sections our beloved Master Admin was referring to and have pasted them along with my two cents for the English meanings... one of you talented Russian speaking folks are going to have to make the jump to light speed for me.

    to be taking somebody from pillar to post
    PARRISH (cont'd)
    Everybody wants something, Joe.
    You've been taking me from pillar
    to post here. I thought I knew who
    you were, and it wasn't a whole lot
    of fun, however it was almost bear-
    able. Now I'm getting something
    else from you, something very, very
    strange -- what is it that you want,
    Joe?

    ---- end dialogue

    Pillar to post, means to be taken from one place to another for seemingly no end purpose. Usually against your will or better judgment, in a fruitless manner. There is a very good article about it here http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-pil1.htm


    be out of the line
    DREW
    Daddy'll do fine. Besides, he's got
    Joe.

    (a moment)
    And so do you.

    SUSAN
    Drew, you're out of line.

    ---- end dialogue

    When Susan says to Drew, “you are out of line,” she is telling him that he said something that he had no right to say as in it was not his place to comment. It was inappropriate. Most likely the second part, “And so do you” was what she was referring to.

    smell the thorns
    DREW (cont'd)
    (to Quince)
    Wake up and smell the thorns.


    ---- end dialogue

    Based upon the dialogue... “Wake up and smell the thorns.” – would be a play on the phrase, “Wake up and smell the coffee.”


    to know chapter and verse about smith.
    SUSAN
    C'mon! The guy's working with you.
    You always know chapter and verse
    about everyone who works --

    ---- end dialogue

    This expression is based upon the Bible or scripture being in the format of Chapter and then verse. So, it means that if you know someone or something very well, very detailed...then you know that person or topic, “chapter and verse.”


    to let the chips fall where they may
    PARRISH
    ... I don't know what you're
    going to do -- how can this be love?
    She doesn't know who you are. Why
    don't you tell her? Try it out on
    her? See what happens. Reveal
    everything there is to know about
    yourself and let the chips fall
    where they may.

    ---- end dialogue

    This expression means that you should do whatever it is you need to do and not worry about the little things or the consequences.

    "This metaphoric term alludes to chopping wood and is usually joined to a statement that one should do what is right (that is, the woodcutter should pay attention to the main task of cutting logs and not worry about small chips). [Late 1800s]" http://www.answers.com/topic/let-the...where-they-may
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Need help with a few idioms

    Thank you very much! The explanations are very good.

    I also like the islands accent that Joe assumes at certain point in the movie. He says things like "I nuttin' to do wi' dat" and "Obeah evil. I not evil."
    Is there something I should know about this manner of speaking English? What islands? And why are they speaking like that on the islands?
    ~ Мастерадминов Мастерадмин Мастерадминович ~

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    Re: Need help with a few idioms

    Quote Originally Posted by MasterAdmin
    Is there something I should know about this manner of speaking English? What islands? And why are they speaking like that on the islands?
    According to the script, it is to be a "lilting West Indian dialect" which would translate into a Caribbean or Jamaican accent. If you have any difficulty understanding it, let me know.

    From the script....

    Teena shakes her hand anxiously.
    Joe leans forward to Easter and speaks softly in perfect, lilting West Indian dialect.

    JOE
    No obeah, sister. No duppy, no
    jumbie. Evera ting gon' be irey.

    Susan and Teena both look at him, astonished. Easter's
    fearful gaze remains locked on him.

    JOE (cont'd)
    (to Teena)
    Go wi' de doctor lady. Momma be
    fine.

    EASTER
    Don' leave!?

    TEENA
    (pleading)
    Momma.

    Susan leads Teena away. Easter is riveted on Joe.

    EASTER
    (with certainty)
    Obeah.

    JOE
    Obeah evil. I not evil.

    EASTER
    What you then?

    JOE
    I from dat nex' place.

    EASTER
    You wait here'n to take us? Like
    you bus driver to dere?
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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