Speak English Like an American » LESSON 22 - Susan Shares the Good News

Susan Shares the Good News

Bob tells Susan that the Village Market won't take their cookies anymore. Susan tells Bob that the National Cookie Company wants to buy out Susan's Scrumptious Cookies.

Bob: Dear, I've got some bad news.

Susan: What's the matter, Bob?

Bob: The Village Market won't take any more of our cookies.

Susan: Why not? They're selling like hotcakes!

Bob: I know, but a lady found a blue hair in her cookie. Now Carol refuses to sell them.

Susan: Carol is such a dragon lady! We're better off having nothing to do with her.

Bob: She's not my cup of tea either, but she was selling lots of cookies.

Susan: Oh well. That's the way the cookie crumbles. Ha ha. Get it?

Bob: Susan, this is no laughing matter!

Susan: Bob, we don't need the Village Market anymore.

Bob: Why not?

Susan: The National Cookie Company called. They want to buy out our business.

Bob: Susan, this is a dream come true. It looks like we've struck it rich!

Susan: Yes. Soon we'll be rolling in dough!

Idioms
  • better off
    in a more fortunate position
    EXAMPLE 1: We're better off leaving for France on Thursday evening, so we can spend the entire weekend there.
    EXAMPLE 2: If you're interested in studying languages, you'd be better off attending Northwestern University than the University of Chicago.

    NOTE: This expression is often used with conditional tense (would), especially when you're giving advice: "you would be better off doing something" or "you'd be better off doing something."

  • (to) buy out
    to purchase an entire business or someone's share of a business
    EXAMPLE 1: Microsoft bought out Adam's company for $12 million.
    EXAMPLE 2: Harriett and Jane sell homemade snack chips. They hope one day a big company will buy out their business.
  • cup of tea
    the type of person or thing that one generally likes
    EXAMPLE 1: Hockey isn't Alan's cup of tea. He prefers soccer.
    EXAMPLE 2: I know Joy is nice, but she's simply not my cup of tea.

    NOTE: This expression is almost always used in the negative. She's not my cup of tea.

  • dragon lady
    a nasty woman who misuses her power
    EXAMPLE 1: Beth is a real dragon lady. She's always screaming at her employees and blaming them for her mistakes. I hope she gets fired!
    EXAMPLE 2: Liz was nasty to you? I'm not surprised. She's a dragon lady.

    SYNONYMS: bitch [slang]; shrew

  • (to) get it
    to understand
    EXAMPLE 1: I invited 40 people to my Thanksgiving dinner, but only 10 people came. I don't get it!
    EXAMPLE 2: Don't you get it? Your company is about to go out of business!
  • it looks like
    it's likely that
    EXAMPLE 1: It looks like I'll be able to get out of work early today, so let's plan on meeting downtown at 4:30.
    EXAMPLE 2: It looks like it's going to rain, so we'd better just cancel the picnic now.
  • no laughing matter
    nothing to joke about; something serious
    EXAMPLE 1: When the tornado came into town, it was no laughing matter.
    EXAMPLE 2: Jim might have been fooling around when he hit John, but he really hurt him. It was no laughing matter.
  • nothing to do with (someone or something)
    not have any relationship with someone; to not get involved with something
    EXAMPLE 1: After I found out that Nora shoplifted some lipstick from the drugstore, I wanted nothing to do with her.
    EXAMPLE 2: Larry asked Nick if he wanted to help him plan a robbery. Nick told Larry that he wanted nothing to do with it.
  • rolling in dough
    very rich
    EXAMPLE 1: Susan and Bob don't need to work anymore. They're rolling in dough.
    EXAMPLE 2: Adam will be able to retire young. He's rolling in dough.

    NOTE: This is a play on words. "Dough" means "money" as well as what is used to make cookies, breads, and pastries. The dough (cookies) made by Bob and Susan brought them lots of dough (money).

    SYNONYMS: rolling in it; rolling in money; loaded

  • (to) sell like hotcakes
    to sell fast; to be a popular item
    EXAMPLE 1:  Those new Fubu blue jeans are selling like hotcakes. All the girls love them.
    EXAMPLE 2: Stephen King's new novel is selling like hotcakes.
  • (to) strike it rich
    to attain sudden financial success
    EXAMPLE 1: Chad struck it rich with the winning lottery ticket.
    EXAMPLE 2: Craig hopes to strike it rich so he can quit his job and open a winery in California.
  • that's the way the cookie crumbles
    that's the way things go sometimes and there's nothing you can do about it
    EXAMPLE 1: You lost your job? That's the way the cookie crumbles.
    EXAMPLE 2: Somebody drank your last can of Pepsi? Oh well, that's the way the cookie crumbles.
  • What's the matter?
    What's the problem?
    EXAMPLE 1: What's the matter, Bob? You don't look very happy.
    EXAMPLE 2: Oscar looks very pale. What's the matter with him?
Practice The Idioms

Choose the best substitute for the phrase or sentence in bold:

  1. "What's the matter? You don't look happy."
    • a) How are you?
    • b) What does it mean?
    • c) What's wrong?
  2. We sold our business. Now we're rolling in dough!
    • a) we're still making cookies
    • b) we're rich
    • c) we're poor
  3. How could a woman find a hair in her cookie? I just don't get it.
    • a) I don't understand it.
    • b) I don't get hair in my cookies.
    • c) I don't believe it.
  4. Ted and Amber think they're going to strike it rich in the music business.
    • a) get hurt
    • b) make lots of money
    • c) hit something
  5. Bob thought that losing his job at the furniture store was no laughing matter.
    • a) something serious
    • b) something to laugh about
    • c) something that doesn't really matter
  6. My boss at the plastics company was a real dragon lady. Whenever I went into her office, she started yelling.
    • a) ugly woman
    • b) nasty woman
    • c) fire-breathing monster
  7. Nicole, I'm sorry you lost the election for president, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
    • a) that's how it goes and you can't do anything about it
    • b) sometimes cookies fall apart
    • c) when bad things happen, you should be very upset
  8. A few months after Peter fired Bob, his furniture store went out of business.
    • a) started doing better
    • b) moved to a different location
    • c) closed
Answer Key
Practice The Idioms
  1. c
  2. b
  3. a
  4. b
  5. a
  6. b
  7. a
  8. c
Answer Key
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