Catch Word #132 – It’s in mint condition

When buying or selling used items, it’s important to know what condition the items are in. In this episode, we talk about some expressions that are used to describe an item’s condition. We look at expressions to say that something is in excellent condition, bad condition, or somewhere in the middle. If you like looking for deals online from people selling their stuff, or if you’re a second-hand shopper, then this episode is worth a listen!


Expressions included in the learning materialsperfectcondition

  • Mint condition
  • Brand new
  • New to someone
  • Or anything
  • Wear and tear
  • To see something for yourself
  • Craigslist
  • To keep on an eye on something
  • To have seen better days
  • Up close
  • To keep an eye out for something
  • To be in good shape

Sample transcript

Maura:            That’s right. Now today we’re going to do a Catch Word episode, and that is where we talk about different expressions and slang. Of course, we explain them for you and we give you examples of how you can use them.

Harp:              Yes. Today we’re gonna look at expressions that are used to talk about what kind of condition an object is it.

Maura:            Right. Is it in good condition or bad condition? So we’re going to look at expressions that talk about the condition of something.

Harp:              Yeah. These expressions are often used when you’re buying or selling something.

Maura:            All right. So, first we’re going to talk about an expression that means something is in very, very good condition; that it’s like brand new.

Harp:              Yeah. This expression is mint condition.

Maura:            You know, I really like this expression. It is mint condition.

Harp:              Yeah. Mint condition.

Maura:            Now, you know, I kind of remember when I was a kid and hearing this expression for the first time, and thinking that it was so strange. I didn’t understand, because I was thinking of mint, you know? Like the herb or, like, you have a mint after dinner. And I did not understand how mint condition could mean very good condition.

Harp:              Yeah. It’s interesting and it’s got a very interesting origin. A mint is a place where money is made. And when money leaves the mint, it’s in perfect condition. So mint condition is when something is in awesome condition. It’s really nice. It’s like it’s new still.

Maura:            Yeah. I think when I was a kid, I didn’t know that a mint was also the place where money was made.

Harp:              Yeah. I definitely did not know that when I was younger.

Maura:            Right. So mint condition means that it’s like new. You wouldn’t say that something is in mint condition if you bought it brand new from the store. Something is described as being in mint condition when it’s actually not new, but it looks like new or it functions like it’s brand new.

Harp:              Yeah. When it’s as good as new, you would use the expression mint condition.

Maura:            That’s right. So, we are now going to give you, as we always do, a couple examples using mint condition.

Maura:            I really love your dress. Is it new?

Harp:              It’s new to me.

Maura:            Oh. Well, where’d you get it?

Harp:              I got it at the used clothing store near my house.

Maura:            Really? It looks brand new.

Harp:              Yeah. It’s in mint condition. It actually had the tags still on it.

Maura:            Oh, I love those finds at thrift stores.

english PodcastAudio/Learning Materials: Culips