Android APP

English Tests All In One Android App

To study regularly, improve and track your English, you can download our Android app from Play Store. It is %100 free!

Speak English Around Town Lesson 24 Idioms, Proverbs, Expressions MCQ Test

Speak English Around Town Lesson 24 Idioms, Proverbs, Expressions MCQ Test

Congratulations - you have completed Speak English Around Town Lesson 24 Idioms, Proverbs, Expressions MCQ Test. You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Shaded items are complete.

LESSON 24 – Down on One’s Luck


Steve runs into his old friend Carl and asks how hes doing. Carl tells him that hes lost his job and hes got no money. Steve offers him a short-term job at his company.

Steve: Hi, Carl. Long time no see. How’ve you been?

Carl: Down on my luck! I got laid off six months ago, and now I’m flat broke.

Steve: Sorry to hear that. Is your wife still working?

Carl: Yes, but she’s only making minimum wage.

Steve: It’s hard to get by on that!

Carl: Tell me about it! We’re so cash-strapped, we’re going to need to sell our house.

Steve: What type of job are you looking for?

Carl: I’m exploring all avenues. Marketing, sales …

Steve: I wish you’d told me earlier. We just hired a new marketing manager!

Carl: I wish I’d known about that job.

Steve: We still need some help in our sales department. It would only be short term, but it would help you get back on your feet.

Carl: I’m definitely interested.

Steve: The job does involve a lot of grunt work.

Carl: That’s fine. Beggars can’t be choosers.


Language Lens: Wish statements

Use “wish” to say that you want a situation to be different than it is. You can use “wish” for situations in the present and in the past.

=> Present: To talk about the present, use: wish + verb in the past tense

◼ I wish I had a summer house (I don’t have one).
◼ I wish I spoke Chinese (I don’t speak Chinese).
◼ I wish I were* rich (I’m not rich).
◼ I wish you were* a lawyer (You’re not a lawyer).

* After “wish” use “were” instead of “was”. This is the form of the verb “to be” that’s used when situations are imagined or unreal. It’s called the subjunctive.

To say that you are not happy with the current situation and that you want somebody else to do something about it, use: wish + would (or the contraction ‘d) + base form of the verb

◼ I wish you would lose a few pounds.
◼ I wish that guy I met at the bar would call me!
◼ I wish they’d stop talking during the movie.
◼ I wish it would stop snowing.*

*In this case, you need Mother Nature to help you change the situation!

=> Past: To talk about situations in the past that you regret or are not happy about, use: wish + had (or ‘d) I hadn’t + verb in the past tense

◼ I wish I hadn’t agreed to this.
◼ I wish I’d followed your directions.
◼ I wish I hadn’t eaten that sushi.
◼ She wishes she’d gotten into the University of Pennsylvania.


  • beggars can’t be choosers

 you can’t always get exactly what you want; when you need something badly, you’re willing to take whatever you can get

Example: I know you don’t like Al’s Pizza, but it’s the only place that’s still open this late. Beggars can’t be choosers.

  • cash-strapped

 having very little money; not having enough money

Example: Joel has agreed to lend his cash-strapped son $5,000 to cover his rent for the next few months.

  • (to be) down on one’s luck

 in a period of bad luck (especially regarding finances)

Example: After being down on his luck for months, Ken finally got a new job and has started dating a lovely woman.

  • (to) explore all avenues

 to consider many possibilities

Example: Kyle just graduated from college and is now exploring all avenues, including jobs at banks and with the government.

  • flat broke

 without any money; poor

Example: Dan would like to move out of his parent’s house, but he can’t afford to. He’s flat broke.

  • (to) get back on one’s feet

 to recover; to have sufficient money

Example: You lost your job and are having trouble paying your rent? I hope you get back on your feet soon!

  • (to) get by

 to survive; to live from

Example: Jay’s wife Susan lost her job, but the family is able to get by on just his salary.

  • (to) get laid off

 to lose one’s job; to get fired or let go from work

Example: After Scott got laid off from Ford, it took him six months to find a new job.

  • grunt work

 work requiring little skill; menial work

Example: “Did Angela enjoy her summer internship at the bank?” – “No, she was stuck doing grunt work like making copies and getting coffee for the managers.”

  • long time no see

 we haven’t seen each other in a long time

Example: Hi, Tracy. Long time no see. What have you been up to for the past couple of years?

  • minimum wage

 the minimum amount an employer can pay an employee, according to U.S. law

Example: Right now Emily is making minimum wage at the fast food restaurant, but she’s hoping to get a raise soon.

  • short term

 not permanent; for a certain period of time only

Example: Ryan’s company offered him a short-term assignment in Beijing. He’ll be there for six months.

  • Tell me about it!

 I agree

Example: “The professor’s lecture sure was boring.” – ”Tell me about it! I fell asleep after 10 minutes.”

Previous Posts

Next Posts

We welcome your comments, questions, corrections, reporting typos and additional information relating to this content.

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments