Posted by GPP on August 23, 2003
In Reply to: Words-R-Us posted by Henry on August 22, 2003
: : hi..today's list...thank you very much.
: : 1.I am really out of my league here
: Everyone knows more than me. From sport.
A metaphor--such as a young person trying to play ball with professionals.
: : 2.someone seems to be a bit off.
: I don't know. Perhaps a little unreasonable. Perhaps a bit off the mark - see below.
Here "a bit" means "a little bit", or somewhat--(nothing at all to do with biting off a piece of something). "Off" depends on its context; the complete phrase could mean partly correct but partly wrong; or somewhat crazy; or out of sorts, in a rather bad mood; or not performing up to his/her usual standards; or probably any of several other meanings.
: : 3.She is in over her head
: Deeply involved, and unable to escape? From someone drowning.
Yes, the image comes from being out too far in a body of water; another similar phrase is "out of her depth". Again, its meaning depends on the context. It could mean much the same thing as #1, "out of one's league". On the other hand, she might be involved in a poor relationship with a lover, as I think Henry may be suggesting, and unable to break away from it; in this case, however, the alternative phrases "out of her depth" or "out of her league" would imply that it's her partner in the relationship who is too much for her to cope with, rather than the relationship itself.
: : 4.who wears the pants in your house?
: Who is in charge?
This phrase assumes that it's the man of the house who gets to make all the decisions; the phrase has always been at least slightly ironical--the husband (wearing pants) might THINK he makes all the decisions, but the wife (wearing a dress or skirt) knows better.
: : 5.shrugged off his worries
: Left his worries behind, paid no attention to them
: : 6.opinion is off the mark
: Wide of the mark, inaccurate. From archery or shooting.