Open your mouth

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 24 February, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 24 February, 2010, 12:00am

Long in the tooth

What do these 'tooth' phrases mean?

1 to have a sweet tooth

a. to have a toothache

b. to enjoy eating sweet things

2 to go through something with a fine-tooth comb

a. to go through something very thoroughly

b. to look at something very quickly

3 to be a bit long in the tooth

a. to be very young

b. to be old

4 to fight tooth and nail

a. to be very bad-tempered

b. to try very hard to get something you want

5 to have a tooth out

a. to have a tooth removed

b. to have a tooth filled

A kick in the teeth

Can you match these phrases with their meanings?

1 to get your teeth into something

2 to do something by the skin of your teeth

3 to take the bit between your teeth

4 to grind your teeth

5 to give someone a kick in the teeth

a. to only just succeed in doing something

b. to ask someone to do something for you

c. to make a noise by rubbing your teeth together

d. to tell someone a big lie

e. to do what you have decided to do with a lot of enthusiasm

f. to laugh loudly

g. to do something really bad to someone

h. to begin to do something with a lot of energy and enthusiasm

My teeth are on edge!

You overhear these bits of conversation on a bus. What is the second person saying?

1 - How are you getting on at work?

- I'm fed up to the back teeth.

a. I'm really happy and pleased.

b. I can't stand it any longer.

2- Why have you broken up with your boyfriend?

- Because he's been lying through his back teeth since the day we met.

a. he's been telling a lot of terrible lies.

b. he's been spending too much money.

3 - Have you persuaded your dad to stop smoking yet?

- No. It's like pulling teeth.

a. It's almost impossible to do

b. It's been very easy to do.

4 - Do you like Susan Boyle's album?

- I don't. Her voice sets my teeth on edge.

a. makes me smile

b. annoys me very much

5 - What should I do about telling Tom I've lost my job?

- Grit your teeth and get on with it!

a. Accept that it's difficult to do but do it immediately.

b. Put off doing it for a bit more time.

A missing tooth

Complete these sentences with the correct choice of word or phrase.

1 The boss went through my application form with a (sweet tooth / fine-tooth comb).

2 I will (have a tooth out / fight tooth and nail) to get promotion.

3 Did you know that you (take the bit between your teeth / grind your teeth) when you're asleep?

4 Trying to get Robert to stop eating so much chocolate is like (pulling teeth / being fed up to the back teeth).

5 Whenever Oliver starts to complain, it (sets my teeth on edge / makes me lie through my back teeth).

6 What you did last week gave me (a kick in the teeth / a bit between my teeth).