Catch Word #76 – Dibs

In today’s episode we’re going to look at an expression that you can use to say that something is yours. To make a claim that something or some activity belongs to you, you can call dibs. It’s a funny little word with some variations that we also talk about, like to have first dibs. And if you’re going to go for a car ride with some friends, you may want to know about shotgun!


Expressions included in the learning materialsdibs

  • oldies but goodies
  • I called dibs on it
  • to have first dibs
  • to call dibs on something
  • dibs time
  • shotgun
  • to be left
  • No big deal
  • The Wild West
  • an oldie but a goodie

Sample transcript

Maura:  So, maybe you arrive at your friend’s house and there’s some food spread out on the table and there’s only one piece of cake left, so you say that you call dibs on the piece of cake. So, by saying I call dibs on the cake, it means that that is your piece of cake. So you’re really making a quick claim to something that something is yours.
Harp: Yeah, or if you’re playing a game, you can call dibs on, being the first person to go.
Maura: Yeah, so you could also call dibs on an action or an activity. It doesn’t have to be an item; it could be that you want to be the first person to do something. One thing we should mention is that when you use this expression and you make a claim to something, you want to do it with good friends, family, people that you know really well.
Harp: Exactly. Never in a professional environment, and don’t do it with people you’ve just met.

english PodcastAudio/Learning Materials: Culips