Catch Word #166 – Don’t front

Have you ever pretended to be something you’re not? If so, you’ll relate to today’s Catchword episode. Join Andrew and Maura as they introduce and explain three expressions that are used to describe people and things that are inauthentic or fake.

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Expressions included in the learning materials

  • Same old, same oldDon’t front
  • To be on it
  • Laid-back
  • Fishy
  • To front
  • Well put
  • A poseur
  • To call someone out
  • At the heart of something
  • A total 180
  • Bubblegum pop
  • A sham

Sample transcript

Andrew: How about we move on to our third and final expression for today’s episode.
Maura: All right. What is it?
Andrew: Drum roll, please. It’s a sham.
Maura: Right, a sham is a person who pretends to be something that they’re not. So just like to front, or if you call someone a poseur, it’s really the same explanation. You’re talking about a person that is not being authentic, that is pretending to be something that is not really them.
Andrew:  So a sham is just any person who pretends to be something they’re not. And when I hear this expression, a sham, I immediately think of a business context, maybe a salesman or a businessperson who is pretending that they are maybe more successful than they actually are, that’s what I think of when I hear a sham.
Maura: Yeah, it’s true that often with these expressions, a person is pretending to be something bigger or more impressive than they actually are. I mean, why would you want to pretend you’re less?
Andrew: Yeah, no, that’s an interesting point. And I don’t think there are any expressions—I can’t think of any off the top of my head, at least—that describe the opposite, when you’re downsizing yourself, but there are lots, like we’re showing you here today, that describe when you’re pretending to be something you’re not, when you’re trying to make yourself look better.


english PodcastAudio/Learning Materials: Culips English Learning Podcast