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Off the shoulders

[ 2011-01-12 09:30]     字号 [] [] []  
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Off the shoulders

Reader's question:  

"This will take a little weight off our shoulders," said Pacino, who couldn't understand the reasoning of the bill's opponents.

Could you explain "off the shoulders"?

My comments:

When you carry something of a lot of weight on your shoulders, you feel heavy, obviously, and burdened.

And so when you take that weight off your shoulders, you're free from it. You're relieved of it.

Any "weight" taken off is a relief. It can be a real thing – such as the big schoolbag on the back of a diminutive child on the bus.

Or, figuratively speaking, that "weight" can be any sort of mental burden that's been bothering you. Take that off, too, will you?

Related stories:

Off and running

Gold dust

Frugality fatigue

Red flag

Foregone conclusion

Call balls and strikes

Stare in the face

Cyber Monday

With a grain of salt

Drive home

Out of nowhere

Shove it under the carpet

the sky is the limit

hit it off

get my rib in my heart

With bells on

No harm, no foul

Pick up the slack

length and breadth of

get up to speed on something

Go to Zhang Xin's column


About the author:

Zhang Xin 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.