A boy is about to go on his first date, and is nervous about what to talk about. He asks his father for advice.
The father replies, "My son, there are three subjects that always work. These are food, family, and philosophy."
The boy picks up his date and they go to a soda fountain. Ice cream sodas in front of them, they stare at each other for a long time, as the boy"s nervousness builds.
He remembers his father"s advice, and chooses the first topic.
He asks the girl, "Do you like spinach?"
She says "No," and the silence returns.
After a few more uncomfortable minutes, the boy thinks of his father"s suggestion and turns to the second item on the list. He asks, "Do you have a brother?" Again, the girl says "No" and there is silence once again.
The boy then plays his last card. He thinks of his father"s advice and asks the girl the following question: "If you had a brother, would he like spinach?"
comb. Form 1 at or to a distance (telekinesis, telescope).
- television (telecast).
- by telephone (telesales). [greek tele far off]
v. (past and past part. Told) 1 relate in speech or writing (tell me a story).
- make known; express in words (tell me your name).
- reveal or signify to (a person) (your face tells me everything).
- utter (tell lies).
- a (often foll. By of, about) divulge information etc.; reveal a secret, the truth etc. (told her about venice; book tells you how to cook; promise you won't tell; time will tell). B (foll. By on) colloq. Inform against.
- (foll. By to + infin.) Direct; order (tell them to wait).
- assure (it's true, i tell you).
- decide, determine, distinguish (tell one from the other).
- (often foll. By on) produce a noticeable effect or influence (strain told on me; evidence tells against you). 10 (often absol.) Count (votes) at a meeting, election, etc. tell apart distinguish between (could not tell them apart). Tell off colloq. Scold. Tell tales make known another person's faults etc. Tell the time read the time from a clock or watch. You're telling me colloq. I agree wholeheartedly. [old english: related to *tale]
colloq. —n. Temporary employee, esp. A secretary. —v. Work as a temp. [abbreviation]
v. - (often foll. By to) be apt or inclined (tends to lose his temper; tends to fat).
- be moving; hold a course (tends in our direction). [latin tendo tens- or tent- stretch]
- v. Take care of, look after (an invalid, sheep, a machine etc.). [from *attend]
n. - portable canvas etc. Shelter or dwelling supported by poles and cords attached to pegs driven into the ground.
- tentlike enclosure, e.g. Supplying oxygen to a patient. [latin: related to *tend1]
comb. Form denoting a factor of 1012. [greek teras monster]
—n. - word for a definite concept, esp. Specialized (technical term).
- (in pl.) Language used; mode of expression (in no uncertain terms).
- (in pl.) Relation, footing (on good terms).
- (in pl.) A stipulations (accepts your terms). B charge or price (reasonable terms).
- a limited, usu. Specified, period (term of five years; in the short term). B period of weeks during which instruction is given or during which a lawcourt holds sessions.
- logic word or words that may be the subject or predicate of a proposition.
- math. A each of the quantities in a ratio or series. B part of an algebraic expression.
- completion of a normal length of pregnancy. —v. Call, name (was termed a bigot). bring to terms cause to accept conditions. Come to terms yield, give way. Come to terms with reconcile oneself to (a difficulty etc.). In terms of in the language peculiar to; referring to. termly adj. & adv. [latin *terminus]
n. Marine gull-like bird with a long forked tail. [scandinavian]
abbr. Teaching of english as a second language.
card n. Still television picture outside normal programme hours used for adjusting brightness, definition, etc.
- case n. Law case setting a precedent for other similar cases.
- drive n. Drive taken to judge the performance of a vehicle. test-drive v.
- flight n. Aircraft flight for evaluation purposes. test-fly v.
- match n. International cricket or rugby match, usu. In a series.
- paper n. - minor examination paper.
- paper impregnated with a substance changing colour under known conditions.
- pilot n. Pilot who test-flies aircraft.
- —n. - critical examination or trial of a person's or thing's qualities.
- means, procedure, or standard for so doing.
- minor examination, esp. In school (spelling test).
- colloq. Test match. —v. - put to the test.
- try or tax severely.
- examine by means of a reagent. put to the test cause to undergo a test. Test out put to a practical test. testable adj. [latin testu(m) = testa: related to *test2]
- n. Shell of some invertebrates. [latin testa pot, tile, shell]