Insulting Other People
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to mess around – to do unimportant things to have fun when one has nothing else to do; to waste time doing silly things * We’ve been messing around on the computer for hours. Don’t you think we should start our homework soon?
to pipe down – to be quiet; to stop making noise * Hey, pipe down in there! We’re trying to sleep!
to get on (someone’s) nerves – to annoy or bother someone; to do things that make another person upset or angry * It really gets on my nerves when you leave your dirty clothes on the floor.
disgrace – something that is bad, unacceptable, and shameful; something that cannot be approved of * In the past, getting divorced was a disgrace, but now it is more acceptable.
to get a rise out of (someone) – to get an angry reaction from someone; to make something do someone in response to one’s actions or words * He’s only doing that to get a rise out of you. He thinks it’s funny when you get mad. Try to ignore him instead.
to wave (someone) off – to move one’s hand in the air in a way that shows one wants another person to go away or leave a place * We offered to help Ms. Klein clean up the classroom, but she waved us off and said she could do it by herself.
unpredictable – acting in an unexpected way, so that one cannot know what will happen next * That movie was so unpredictable! I had no idea it would end that way.
slight – a rude or disrespectful criticism; something that one says or does that makes another person angry or upset * When you criticized the way Marie’s children were dressed, she took it as a slight to her skills as a mother.
to set (someone) off – to make someone very angry; to cause someone to do something, especially out of anger * It really set Kelvin off when he found out his brother had been lying to him.