The English Learners' Blog

A blog for English learners and their teachers everywhere, initiated in 2010 with the contribution of students from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland. More about me on the On-line Profile below. Welcome!

Shapes in Language – First Comment Round

In an interview broadcast on CNN today, Christiane Amanpour asks her interviewee:

“So how does this (the economic situation in Cuba – currently described as very good by authorities-, and the energy problems recently reported by Cubans) square up?”

What did she mean?

What other uses of words describing shapes (circle, square, triangle, oval, rectangle, round, etc) help you express various ideas in English?

Feel free to make your comments below. The next round is on me!


Filed under: ■ Shapes & Sizes

10 Responses

  1. frontlinevet says:

    fair and square

    • Alina Alens says:

      And the round is open with a great phrase!
      Thanks, Aurelian! Time for the rest of us learners to cross our t’s and dot our i’s.
      Let’s brainstorm some more shapes in language!
      We can only get the big picture by playing all the angles (i. e. using our joint efforts to reach our goal)!

      • atma says:

        speaking of teas and eyes, i think we should use those eyes to watch our peas and queues…so how does that one line up?

      • Alina Alens says:

        About minding our “P”-s & “Q”-s, and about crossing the “T”-s & dotting the “I”-s, I’ll quote someone in CSI (Miami) with: “I will make it my life’s work to …”

  2. frontlinevet says:

    Answer :
    To match, to correspond
    Right teach?@))

  3. atma says:

    fair and square‘ means equal, equitable, honest… a good deal. it can also mean that a person wants to do something correctly (like pay you). or that something has been divided equally… and so on.

    • atma says:

      in this case the ‘good economy’ and the ‘energy problems’ are at odds with eachother and need to ‘square up’ or ballance out with each other, or maybe one could settle the other…can they?

  4. ringtone says:

    Impressive!, Obviously you know a lot about this.

  5. Magdalena G. says:

    To round off a number, for example because it is big and the digits in the lower positions aren’t that significant in the context the number is presented, or just to simplify calculations.

  6. Alina Alens says:

    Here‘s an interesting place where you can test your knowledge of unusual shapes like:

    – balanoid,
    – bursiform,
    – cordate,
    – pineal,
    – sagittal,
    – pinnate,
    – cuneate,
    – cingular,
    – corniculate,
    – tectifor,
    – helicoid,
    – navicular, or
    – subulate.

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