to be so rich that you can afford anything
“Go buy your own! I’m not made of money!”
make money hand over fist
Ever since he left his office job and went into business by himself, he has been making money hand-over-fist.
make a killing
He made a killing on some business idea out east, then came home looking to find the girl he left behind.
“If everything goes to plan, and with a little bit of luck, we should make a killing off this.”
make a mint
They’re making a mint selling second hand books to students. I wish I had thought of that.
make a meal of (something)
2. to exaggerate a small injury or insult
“Dave is making a complete meal out of setting up his shelves. It shouldn’t be that hard.”
He has a bad habit of making a meal out of every tackle: it seems that every 5 minutes he is rolling on the floor crying.
“I think you are making a bit of a meal of this. I only said I didn’t like your new haircut, not that I think you are ugly.”
make a pig's ear of (something)
Anna has never asked Dave to help her with DIY since he made a pig’s ear out of decorating the nursery.
“Can you have a look at this for me? I’m afraid I’m making a pig’s ear out of it.”
make ends meet
They have been struggling to make ends meet ever since Dave lost his job at the shoe factory.
“I’m not sure if I will be able to make ends meet next month. So if you know of any work, let me know. I’ll do anything.”
The city council has made good headway in getting the new subway line designed and ready to open. Hopefully it will be finished early next year.
“It hasn’t been a good start, but I think now we are making some headway.”
make or break
“This next project is make or break for Dave. The bosses have wanted to fire him for a while, but if he can succeed in this one they will probably keep him.
make (your) blood boil
“Every time I see him with her it makes my blood boil. I can’t believe he stole my girlfriend.”
make (your) flesh crawl
make you scared, or feel uncomfortable, creepy and disgusted
Whenever I see a rich old man marrying a young 20-year old, it makes my skin crawl.
make (your) toes curl
Watching Dave try to chat to women made Phil’s toes curl. It was horrible to watch.
make (yourself) scarce
(can also be used for ‘go away for a while’)
A good PA knows when to fight for a client’s needs, and when to make him/herself scarce.
“When the bosses come here, make yourself scarce: the last thing I want is for them to see you here.”
man's best friend
Dave was happy in his retirement: a nice house, a wonderful wife, and man’s best friend to walk with him each morning next to the river.
“Why do you need a wife, when you have man’s best friend: Loyal, trusting, and incapable of talking?”
(a) man of letters
In the past there were great writers, great men of letters who thought carefully about deep topics. Now there are a thousand books about people falling in love with vampires.
“When I retire I would like to become a man of letters, sitting at my window in an old house in the countryside.”
a man's man
Dave enjoys knitting, and last week, for his birthday, he invited everyone to the ice dancing. I wouldn’t say he is a man’s man.
“Ha, you won’t find me doing girly things like yoga! I’m a man’s man. I like to get my exercise outside, hiking up mountains, cutting down trees, fighting bears…”
(the) man upstairs
Before he died, Phil tried to make peace with the man upstairs. We only hope he was successful.
(the) man on the street
Over the last decade the man on the street has lost faith in both politics and business.
an important or serious example of its kind
It was a major league decision, and Dave only hoped he had chosen the right path.
“I’m tired of Dave. He seems like a major league pain the ass.”
make a monkey of (someone)
If there was one thing Anna enjoyed, it was making a monkey out of the boys who wanted to date her. She would pretend she was interested, and then crush them.
“I’m OK teaching the class, but I am not going to stand here while you make a monkey out of me. I am a teacher, not a clown!”
mark my words
“You may laugh now, but mark my words, in a year you’ll be begging me for a job.”
(a) marked man
Ever since he scored 3 against United, he has become a marked man. Nobody is going to be surprised by anything he does now.
The President has become something of a marked man since he annoyed congress and the public with his tax reform package. I think it will be very difficult for him to get decisions done in the future
many moons ago
“I was a great player once, but that was many moons ago.”
a matter of life and death
“I don’t know why you are so angry about me spilling some wine on your trousers. I know it is annoying, but it is hardly a matter of life and death.”
“Take this letter to the general, and do not delay. It is a matter of life and death.” [
The celebrity magazine had another article about the May-December romance between the two actors. Most people don’t think it will last, and it is just a publicity stunt.
Most people don’t like the idea of a May-December romance, but if one person is looking for security, and the other excitement, why should they not try it?
money burning a hole in (my) pocket
Dave’s job pays him well, but every pay day he finds he suddenly has money burning a hole in his pocket, and by the end of the week he has spent it all.
“My parents gave me a $100 note last week, ever since when it has been burning a hole in my pocket.”
money for old rope
Many people say that working on the board of a university is money for old rope – what do these people actually do?
Money-laundering is a crime, but a difficult one to spot.
He was convicted of money-laundering, using his casino as a way to pass his drug money into his accounts.
“I’m afraid, on this matter, money talks. Your idea is very nice, but we have to go with the biggest offer. Sorry.”
money to burn
They told Dave to talk to Anna about her investing in his company; after all, she always seemed to have money to burn.
“I’m afraid I can’t go on holiday at the moment. I don’t really have any money to burn.”
monkey see, monkey do
“The kids stealing is just a case of monkey see, monkey do: they get it from their father.”
“Hawaii or the Seychelles? Both would be great, but it’s a moot point: I have to work.”
(the) moral high ground
“The one thing about you is you always take the moral high ground. I don’t think you would do anything evil, no matter how much money I offered.”
(have) a mountain to climb
(often used after something has made success even more difficult)
United have just scored again. Now City have mountain to climb.
move Heaven and Earth
He promised her he would move Heaven and Earth for her if she married him.
move the goalposts
I’m tired of them always moving the goalposts: at first they said I only needed to improve the finances; then they said I had to double the profits. Now I have to make us the number one company in the sector.
mover and shaker
The party was filled with the city’s movers and shakers: artists, musicians, business leaders and even the mayor.
much ado about nothing
The whole scandal was much ado about nothing: he only met her for coffee, once, and nothing happened. The rest was the newspapers inventing a story.
mum's the word
“Don’t worry, I won’t tell her. Mum’s the word.”
“Dave is alright, but a bit of a mummy’s boy. He needs to grow up a bit.”
music to (my) ears
The exams being delayed for an extra month was music to his ears; he needed more time to study, otherwise he would surely fail.
“She wants to see me? That’s music to my ears.”
mutton dressed as lamb
“Phil’s mum is a bit embarrassing: she still gets drunk twice a week, and her clothes make her look like mutton dressed as lamb.”