Calm Down: It’s Phrasal Verbs With “Down”

Do you ever have a funny feeling about someone and you can’t pin down why? You meet someone for the very first time and you mark them down as a bad person, an unreliable person, someone who will let you down.

Here and now, using lots and lots of phrasal verbs with down, I am going to knuckle down and examine these funny feelings.

Do you know what knuckle down means. Probably not. An ape, King Kong for example, walks on its feet and its knuckles. But that is not exactly knuckling down. Suppose you have an exam in a week’s time, an English exam, and you think, ‘I need to get down to some serious revision.’

And you really do get down to it. You drink lots of very strong coffee, you pour it down your throat, cup after cup, your body twitches, you can’t sleep, you can’t even lie down. All you want to do is read your English grammar book. Read it, read it, and read it again. You just can’t put it down. Now, that’s knuckling down. You get down to it, and you knuckle down.

Anyway, those funny feelings, what do they boil down to? It’s all in the eyes. When you get right down to it, everything you ever need to know about anyone is right there, in the eyes. The windows of the soul. You may want to write that down.

We all tend to get bogged down in detail. Some girls have long lists of what they want in a man. Some girls even jot it all down on paper in case they forget. How can you forget whether or not you like somebody? Suppose you put the list down somewhere and you lose it. And then you meet a man. Should you date him, yes or no? Can’t decide. You can’t find the list.

Some girls even carry little astrology charts with them. The first thing they ask a guy is ‘what’s you star sign?’ Then they hurry on down to the nearest bathroom, settle down on a toilet, get out their charts and look down the list.

‘Let’s see, I’m Gemini and he’s Taurus. Only three out of ten. So, I guess I don’t like him.’

Learning how to look into someone’s eyes helps you cut down on the work and the paperwork.

My first mistake with Lex was to compare him to the list. Tall, good looking, great dancer. Hmm, maybe I should settle down with him forever. Of course the list was much longer than that. That is the cut down version. I don’t want you to know all my secrets. But even so it was stupid, stupid, stupid.

Also I had my astrology chart. I’m Gemini and he was a Leo. A match made in heaven the chart said. Put it down to stupidity, or desperation if you like, but I was convinced. The list and the star signs, he matched both. You could have blown me down with a feather. I told myself to calm down, cool down. But how can you stay cool when you think you’ve just found your soul mate?

Have you ever done something so stupid you think you’ll never live it down? I mean, in public, with lots of people watching? That night I got really, really drunk. I like to dance, I like to go to clubs, but I really don’t drink much. I usually water down my drinks, even the wine. I take a bottle of water with me, I drink half a glass of wine and then I refill the glass with water. It’s much cheaper than buying lots of wine and it stops me from getting really drunk and falling down.

I just hate how I feel the next day; hung over, headache, really tired, run down. And after that night with Lex I felt as though I had been run down, by a truck.

Anyway, once I got out of the toilet I ran back down the hallway to find Lex, the love of my life. And I did find him, dancing with another girl. I went weak at the knees, I had to sit down on the floor. My best friend Marie sat down beside me and handed me a bottle of wine. A full bottle. I drank it straight down as though it were water.

I tried to stand but the room was swaying. I fell down on my hands and knees and I crawled towards Lex.

‘Get away from him,’ I kept shouting at the girl, ‘he’s mine, he’s mine, he’s mine.’

Lex looked down on me and I looked up at him. Our eyes met. His mouth was serious, but his eyes were laughing.

All I needed to know was there in that single glance. He looked down on me, he had no respect. True I was down on my hands and knees and my face had turned green, but when you get right down to it, no respect, no relationship.

Have you got all that down? I hope so.