Welcome to American English Idioms: Lesson 17. In this lesson you have 3 American English idioms to read, listen to, translate, and pronounce in English. Please focus and do your best so that you can learn and improve your knowledge of American English idioms. Don’t forget to use the comments section below to share your thoughts and what you’ve learned today.

Directions 1: Watch the video 2 or more times, and pay close attention to the audio and text.

Directions 2: Read the following text in English, then translate it using the translator on this page into your language if needed. When you finish, feel free to write a comment in the comments section below and let us know how you feel about what you’ve learned, as well as what you’ve learned.


Bite Off More Than (One) Can Chew: To take on more work or responsibility than one can accomplish. It’s a phrase that is typically used to describe someone who has taken on more than they can handle and ends up not being able to complete the tasks assigned to them. They’re often left frustrated, angry, and disappointed with themselves for taking on too much.

This idiom is often used in the context of one trying to take on more work than they can handle, which results in them biting off more than they can chew. It is typically said in a metaphorical sense, for example “I’m sorry I can’t help you with this; it’s too much for me.

This idiom is a metaphor that defines the use of too much effort on a task that one can’t complete. This can lead to frustration and feelings of failure, which can be detrimental. The frequency of this idiom used in modern culture is criticized by some as it is seen as an excuse not to try at all.

One might bite off more than they can chew if they take on too much work or responsibility. Many would say that this is an understatement as those who take on too much work or responsibility often end up getting burned out and quitting their jobs altogether. The key to avoiding this problem is to know your limits and not be afraid of saying no to tasks you cannot handle.

The phrase “to bite off more than one can chew” is a colloquialism expressing the idea of taking or undertaking an excessive amount of work or responsibility. There are many possible causes of biting off more than you can chew, including mental exhaustion, overconfidence, ignorance of one’s limitations, and mismanagement of time.


To BITE THE BULLET means to face a difficult or unpleasant situation. The word “BULLET” is used to refer to the gun and the phrase is related to knowing that life isn’t always easy and that sometimes we must face up to difficulties.

BITE THE BULLET is a metaphor that means to face the consequences of one’s actions. It is often used in military contexts when difficult or unpleasant action is required.

BITE THE BULLET is a popular expression meaning to face difficulty or unpleasant things with the attitude that it is better than running away. Some people might use this expression when they are faced with an unpleasant situation and do not want to run away from it. They want to stay and deal with the problem, no matter how difficult it may be.

To bite the bullet is to face a difficult or unpleasant situation. You may metaphorically bite the bullet, meaning you face something and endure it, and you might literally bite the bullet, meaning you shoot yourself.

The phrase “to bite the bullet” is used metaphorically to describe putting up with a difficult decision, no matter how uncomfortable. The term originates from the early days of firearms, when people would have to bite down on a bullet in order to load it into their weapon’s chamber.


Bite the dust is a slang term that means to be destroyed or ruined beyond repair. It may also mean to falter in some way, such as in an athletic event.

Bite the dust is a slang term that means to be destroyed. It derives from the early 20th century practice of spitting tobacco juice on track surfaces to absorb oil, which would cause horses’ hooves to slip and fall. The most common use is when something falls down or drops, implying it has been shattered.

The phrase “bite the dust” is part of an idiom that means to die, with the implication that death comes quickly and with little resistance. The phrase was originally used in horse races to indicate that the jockey had fallen off his or her horse. The term is no longer used in horse racing but developed into a metaphor for destructive events and situations.

Bite the dust implies that someone or something has been destroyed or ruined, usually beyond repair. It’s a slang phrase used by people to express their feelings about a situation. In this context, it seems as though the writer is aware of the phrase “bite the dust” and that it may have been used before in a negative way, so he/she felt justified in using it to describe how they were feeling about being put down by their boss.

To bite the dust is an expression that means to die or be eliminated. It can also refer to someone or something who fails in some way, for example, “He bit the dust in his interview.

3 thoughts on “BITE OFF MORE THAN (ONE) CAN CHEW, BITE THE BULLET, and BITE THE DUST: American English Idioms #17

  1. Hello , hind from Iraq,
    – Bite off more than one can chew
    Iraqi politician bite off more than one can chew so that lead failed every think, we hope change in future.
    -Bite the bullet
    Life in Iraq like Bite the bullet.

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