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Get a grip, people! 冷静下来

中国日报网 2023-08-29 12:24


Reader question:

Please explain “get a grip” in this quote:

“Why should he apologize? Get a grip, people! It was a joke.”

My comments:

Apparently, someone (he) tells a joke to draw the collective ire of some people. They demand that he – should be someone famous, popular and influential – apologize for that joke, which they deem offensive or politically incorrect or otherwise inappropriate.

Here, the speaker defends him, asking people to calm down. It’s just a joke, the speaker points out. So, relax.

Don’t overreact. Don’t lose control of yourself.

In other words, get a grip.

Get a grip?

Originally, this means getting hold of something firmly. When shaking hands, we find, for example, some people have a firm grip – their fingers squeeze like clamps.

In order to stand still in a fast moving bus, we’re advised to get a grip on the back of a seat or onto one of the hand straps overhead.

By extension, we get a grip on a situation by starting to understand it and thereby take control of it.

We may become irrational if we lose the grip on the situation (failing to understand it properly).

And when we do that, we lose control and become, say, angry.

When that happens, someone, just like the speaker in our example, may ask us to get a grip.

Get a grip, that is, and don’t overreact!

In our example, the speaker advises people calm down. After all, it’s just a joke.

“Get a grip”, in short and to sum up, means “calm down”. Relax. Don’t overreact. Don’t be angry. Don’t lose your composure. Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill, basically.

All right, here are media examples of “get a grip” in this sense:

1. Jennifer Lawrence has responded to the uproar surrounding a photo of herself in a revealing dress during a photocall while promoting her new film, Red Sparrow, while her male castmates were wrapped up in jackets and coats. The Hunger Games actress admitted she felt “extremely offended” by fans suggesting that the photo was sexist, and took to Facebook to share her opinion. She wrote: “Wow. I don’t really know where to get started on this ‘Jennifer Lawrence wearing a revealing dress in the cold’ controversy. This is not only utterly ridiculous, I am extremely offended. That Versace dress was fabulous, you think I’m going to cover that gorgeous dress up with a coat and a scarf? I was outside for five minutes. I would have stood in the snow for that dress because I love fashion and that was my choice.”

The 27-year-old continued: “This is sexist, this is ridiculous, this is not feminism. Over-reacting about everything someone says or does, creating controversy over silly innocuous things such as what I choose to wear or not wear, is not moving us forward. It’s creating silly distractions from real issues. Get a grip people. Everything you see me wear is my choice. And if I want to be cold THATS MY CHOICE TOO!”

Speaking about Jennifer’s outfit, one person previously wrote: “This is such a quietly depressing (and revealing) image. Not least because I've been outside today and it’s bloody FREEZING,” while another added: “Everyone in that picture looks mortified by the fact of that picture. Who suggests this?”

This isn't the first time Jennifer has defended herself during her stay in London, as the Hollywood star also came under fire after appearing to be ‘rude’ to Joanna Lumley at the BAFTAs. Speaking about the incident on Lorraine, Jennifer explained: “I grabbed her just before she went on stage and was like, ‘Just go on and on and on about me’, obviously kidding, and she went on and gave me the nicest introduction ever and so as a joke, it was kind of an inside joke between us, I was like, ‘Alright, calm down,’ because I was the one who told her to do it, and boy did that go wrong! I was at the BAFTAs for 15 minutes and I offended England.”

- Jennifer Lawrence responds to dress controversy: ‘Get a grip people’, HelloMagazine.com, February 22, 2018.

2. Joe Swash left fans swooning during his return to I’m A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here as they quickly spotted a change from his last stint on the show back in 2008. The former EastEnders actor has signed up to do it all again in the ITV show's first-ever spin-off, almost 15 years after being crowned King of the Jungle.

Joe made his first appearance in I’m A Celebrity... South Africa on Tuesday night (May 2) as he made his entrance into the South African bush alongside fellow former EastEnders star Dean Gaffney. But the pair weren’t allowed to head straight to camp where they’ll battle it out against the other memorable contestants to be crowned the first I’m A Celebrity ‘Legend’.

They were reunited with hosts Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly Flipping Disgusting drinking trial to win treats for their new campmates. Joe and Dean arrived secretly on the show, where they were greeted immediately with a Bushtucker trial, described as “one of the most disgusting ever” by ITV.

The pair were made to drink “gruesome concoctions” named after individual campmates in a bid to win treats for them. It involved finishing drinks made of blended cow vagina, maggots, chicken intestines, and testicles, while McPartlin and Donnelly looked on with glee.

“I’m really nervous. I feel like I’m doing this for the first time again, which ain’t good,” Joe, 41, confessed ahead of his entrance while 45-year-old Dean admitted: “I’m probably more scared now than I was then.”

But despite watching the stomach-churning challenge unfold, I’m A Celebrity viewers were flocking to social media to speak about Joe’s new change in appearance.

@snape.chris said: “Thanks a lot for spoiling the surprise. Not much point watching.” @jadams2911 commented: “Thanks for spoiling that before tonight’s episode! @jacs_51x wrote: “Well that’s the surprise ruined for me.” @samconroy79 replied: “Spoiler alert. Aye cheers buddy.” @shazzaredford added: “No need to watch it now. We know who it is.”

Others, however, defended him. @lucyholt29 said: “It’s not a spoiler! Imaceleb already posted like 4hrs ago saying they were going in. Get a grip people. Good luck Joe.”

- I’m A Celebrity viewers spot Joe Swash change after coming under fire for ‘spoiler’, ManchesterEveningNews.co.uk, May 3, 2023.

3. It’s a good thing AI is going to take over the world soon and we’ll all be living in virtual reality headsets, because pretty soon we won’t be able to use any words.

Taking a page from PETA’s book that words like “bullpen” needs to stop being said because apparently its offensive to bulls, we are now going after seaweed. Yes, seaweed.

On Friday, BBC news was interviewing an environmentalist about the ongoing seaweed problem that has continued to plague much of the southwestern coast for months.

However, when the Radio 4 “Today” anchor used the term “seaweed” to describe what it was, the elitist ‘naturalist’ Chris Packham said that term is offensive and asked the anchor to refrain from using it.

“I’ll politely ask you to mind your language. Can we call it marine algae rather than seaweed? The weed word puts it at an immediate disadvantage, doesn’t it?” Packham asked.

The anchor immediately apologized because he knows how important all those marine biologists tuning in are for the ratings.

“Marine algae” everyone. Just rolls right off the tip of your tongue, doesn’t it?

As one would expect with someone who is so defensive over words like seaweed, Packham than started lambasting local residents for their complaints over the abundant amount of seawe … I mean marine algae … that has been covering their shores. His solution? Just “get a grip,” people!

“So you know, let’s get a grip and tolerate nature. People love nature in the UK when it’s not an inconvenience to them, but the minute that they are slipping over a few forms of algae, everyone’s up in arms,” Packham argued.



About the author:

Zhang Xin is Trainer at chinadaily.com.cn. He has been with China Daily since 1988, when he graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University. Write him at: zhangxin@chinadaily.com.cn, or raise a question for potential use in a future column.

(作者:张欣   编辑:丹妮)


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Heat of the moment? 一时冲动


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Tempting fate?

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