How are you? Hoje, no podcast, eu falo sobre mais duas expressões super comuns do inglês do dia-a-dia. Não perca!
How are you? You’re listening to the new episode of the Inglês Online podcast. Download the Inglês Online app at the Google Play Store or the Apple Store – search for “inglês online Ana”. Thank you for telling everyone you know about this podcast and, enjoy!
So, check this out: if you’re receiving my message in your inbox (thanks for being a subscriber, by the way) then you probably keep an eye on your inbox for my messages, right? Otherwise, why would you be on the list…? So, when you keep an eye on something, that means you’re focusing a little bit of your attention on it.
It’s like… you’re aware that something’s about to happen; you’re aware that this cool newsletter you’ve subscribed to will be popping in your inbox shortly and for that reason you’re keeping an eye on your inbox. Every time you fire up that browser window there’s something in the back of your mind that tells you “There may be new mail from Ana” – or anyone, really, that you’ve subscribed to.
So, here’s the thing: I know you understand what I mean when I use the idiom “keep an eye on”. I know you got it; I’m sure you understood the little example I just gave you. Is this idiom coming out of your mouth as you speak English, though? That’s what this podcast is for: give you a lot of audio input. Listen to something you understand long enough, and before you know it you’ll be saying it like a pro. Or, in our case, like a native speaker. I’ve seen it happen countless times.
Let me get on, then, with more examples – this one, for a slightly different way to use “keep an eye on”. Same as we do in Brazil, in English we can use ‘keep an eye on’ someone or something with the purpose of watching that person or thing. As many of you know, I like going to cafés or coffee shops with my computer and getting some work done over a cup of coffee.
Sometimes when I want to go to the loo, I ask the person sitting next to me to keep an eye on my bag and my computer. I’m asking that person to watch my stuff for me – by the way, once, in Brazil, I asked a girl to do that for me and she said, point blank, “If someone tries to steal your stuff there’s nothing I can do”. Anyway, I’ve had some strange stuff happen here in London as well, regarding other people’s reactions to leaving stuff unattended in a café.
But back to our idiom: you get the point. You ask someone to keep an eye on your bags, on your groceries, on your wallet, on your new employee, on your kids, whatever or whomever you think needs a bit of vigilance! You can also say keep an eye out for something, “keep an eye out for something.” That has a bit more of a specific meaning – let’s say I tell you, Inglês Online subscriber, “Keep an eye out for my English course!” Here, I’m telling you exactly what to expect – my new course. I’m not asking you to watch or take care of my course – I’m telling you there is this new thing coming up – my course, and telling you to pay attention: keep an eye out for it, because it’s coming soon!
“Keep an eye out” is also useful to warn people that something or someone is going to show up soon. You can tell your colleagues at work “Guys, keep an eye out for the Health inspector visit – we got a letter from the Health Department today saying they’re inspecting every office in the neighbourhood this week”. Or maybe you’re at the bus stop with a group of people and you’re all chatting and having a laugh and your friend says “Everyone, keep an eye out for the bus or we’ll be stuck here for another thirty minutes.”
So, what is it that you’re keeping an eye out for at this moment? Let me know! See you soon.
before you know it = antes que você se dê conta, quando você menos esperar
get work done over a cup of coffee = fazer o trabalho enquanto bebo café
loo = toalete, banheiro (UK)
point blank = de maneira direta
leave something unattended = deixar algo largado ou sozinho sem ninguém pra olhar ou cuidar
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