Catch Word #138 – Trying to make ends meet

Some people have a lot of money and some people have only a little bit. This episode focuses on expressions that people use when they are talking about trying not to spend money, often because they don’t have very much. There are people who pinch pennies all the time, and others who only tighten their belts when they have to. Listen to this episode to learn about making ends meet.


Expressions included in the learning materialsmakeendsmeet

  • To feel down
  • To make ends meet
  • Instant noodles
  • A shower
  • To start someone off
  • To get by
  • As long as
  • Minimum wage
  • To get back on your feet
  • To pinch pennies
  • To tighten your belt
  • Broke
  • To cut costs

Sample transcript

Maura: This expression is usually used when someone doesn’t have very much money. So if we continue with the example that you gave, Harp, if someone makes $500 a week, and it’s just enough money for them to be able to survive, to be able to pay their bills, like their rent of their food.
Harp: Yeah. They’re not buying a lot of fancy clothes or going on any trips. They’re just making enough money to meet their basic needs.
Maura:  That’s right. So, the expression itself isn’t actually negative, but it’s often used in a situation where someone doesn’t have very much money or they’re trying to make ends meet. They’re trying to find a way to make enough money that they’re able to pay their bills.
Harp: Yeah. It’s used when people are having trouble making ends meet, usually.
Maura: That’s right. This expression, too, has a few interesting origins. And if you’re interested in those, we’ll tell you about them in our Learning Materials, which comes when you become a member.

english PodcastAudio/Learning Materials: Culips

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Posted in Catch Word.