BBC Learning English: The English We Speak – Chew the fat: to talk in a friendly way, socially, without actually exchanging too much serious information. Maybe gossip a bit…
Rob has taken Feifei to a cricket match but she’s not too keen, especially as some of the words associated with the game have her stumped! It’s time for Rob to explain what being stumped really means.
(At the coffee shop)
Rob: Hello and welcome to The English We Speak. Hi, Feifei. I saved this table for us. This is my favourite coffee shop.
Feifei: Hi, Rob. Thanks for inviting me to have breakfast with you. It’s nice to have the first meal of the day in the company of a colleague before going to the office.
Rob: Yes, indeed. Let’s chew the fat.
Feifei: Ah, you won’t catch me this time! I know what you mean by ‘chew the fat’!
Rob: Every language has some expressions that have a literal meaning and a figurative one. I’m glad you’ve heard this one before.
Feifei: In English, the expression ‘chew the fat’ means to talk in a friendly way, socially, without actually exchanging too much serious information. Maybe gossip a bit…
Rob: Yes. It’s a casual conversation, like the one we might have now, over breakfast.
Feifei: But first, let’s hear some examples of how to use the expression ‘chew the fat’.
- I don’t want arguments at the dinner table! Let’s not talk about football or politics – let’s just chew the fat about other things.
- Mary left the company two years ago but she’s always around chewing the fat with her old colleagues.
Rob: So now you know what ‘chew the fat’ means. Let’s enjoy some fat. I took the liberty of ordering some food for you – and it’s on its way now.
Waitress: And here you have two plates of your typical English breakfast, as you ordered, sir.
Rob: Thank you. Mmmmm – that smells delicious! Come on, Feifei, tuck in while it’s still hot.
Feifei: Oh Rob. It looks nice but it’s a lot of food. Fried egg, cooked mushrooms, half a tomato, a lot of bacon…
Rob: Yes. It is our typical fry-up.
Feifei: I like eggs and tomato but… there’s a lot of fat here.
Rob: Come on, just chew the fat! It’s very cold outside and there’s nothing like a hearty meal to start the day full of energy.
Feifei: Well, it is really cold and the meal smells nice. Maybe eating a bit of fat occasionally won’t make me… well… fat.
Rob: Come on, let’s chew the fat. I’ve heard that John hired a new secretary. He’s got one already so why does he need two?
Feifei: I know. And she doesn’t have much to do anyway… Mmmmm… this bacon is really crispy. Let’s chew the fat. Bye.
Rob: Bye. Mmmmm. Glorious greasy food! Mmmmm…
The English We Speak – Chew the fat Transcript Video
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