A few more phrasal verbs

Posted by ESC on May 06, 2003

In Reply to: A few more phrasal verbs posted by kathaab afandi on May 06, 2003

: hello,
: why should we have phrasal verbs in the first place..it sure isn't making english easy to learn..anyway here I go...thank you.

: 1)engrossed in
: 2)poked around in the system
: 3)fooling around in someone else...
: 4)pranking about
: 5)the shoe was on the other foot
: 6)the story began to trumble out
: 7)give off heat
: 8)swept out from under
: 9)crushed up his prescribed sedative...can't I use the word "crushed" alone without the "up" part here?
: 10)cover your butt
: 11)go in and out of fasion
: 12}gaining ground over

1) engrossed in - Deeply interested in something (like a book). "He was so engrossed in his book that he didn't answered when I called him."
From Merriam-Webster online --
Engrossed: to take or engage the whole attention of : occupy completely

2) poked around in the system - Took a look/ examined here and there.

3) fooling around in someone else... - Not sure from the sentence fragment. "Fooling around" has several meanings depending on the context.

4) pranking about - I'm not familiar with this phrase. A prank is a "practical joke" like turning someone's phone ringer up high so it startles him. The phrase could mean "goofing off," spending time on nonproductive activities. Prank: a mildly mischievous act; a ludicrous act. Merriam-Webster

5) the shoe was on the other foot "The shoe is on the other foot - Conditions have been reversed.the situation has changed." From The Dictionary of Cliches by James Rogers (Ballantine Books, New York, 1985).
6) the story began to trumble out - A person begins to rapidly tell about an experience.

7) give off heat - Not sure. There's more than one meaning depending on the context. Could be literal - "The stove gave off heat." Or could be figurative.

8) swept out from under - Not sure. Suddenly taken away. The image is an ocean wave sweeping someone off his feet. Or a rug being pulled out from under someone's feet.

9) crushed up his prescribed sedative...can't I use the word "crushed" alone without the "up" part here? Yes, I think so. Crushed the prescribed sedative.

10) cover your butt - Take action, assembling evidence, etc., so you won't be blamed for something. "I wrote a letter telling them the machine should be repaired. I wanted to cover my butt in case it broke and someone was hurt." The phrase it usually "cover you're a*s or CYA. "Butt" is considered less crude than a**.

11) go in and out of fashion - A fashion or fad is popular then everyone tires of it. Later it may revived in popularity.. "The mini-skirt has gone in and out of fashion several times since its original popularity in the 1960s."

12} gaining ground over - Steadily catching up with. I guess the origin is a race - a person/horse behind can gain ground and pass the person out front.