Journey in Life: 11/17/15

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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

"Short of" nghĩa là gì?

Implosion of SRS K Cooling Tower. Photo courtesy Savannah River Site.

'Short of' nghĩa là chưa đến mức mà (not reaching as far as); ngoại trừ việc... thì... (without going so far as (some extreme action)); apart from, other than, aside from, besides, except (for), excepting, without, excluding, not counting, save (for)); ngoài ra còn có nghĩa ít hơn (less than).

Ví dụ
He died at sixty-one, four years short of his pensionable (được nhận lương hưu) age.

A rocket failure left a satellite tumbling in an orbit far short of its proper position.

Short of putting out an all-persons alert, there's little else we can do.

Short of searching everyone, there is nothing we can do.

Prospects for any kind of international order—indeed, for human survival—now urgently required the amelioration (làm cho tốt hơn, cải thiện), if not elimination, of major-power conflict. A theoretical limit was sought—short of the point of either superpower using the entirety of its military capabilities. Strategic stability was defined as a balance in which neither side would use its weapons of mass destruction because the adversary was always able to inflict an unacceptable level of destruction in retaliation.

Phạm Hạnh

"Lay low" nghĩa là gì?

Afghanistan - Mồ chôn các đế chế. Photo courtesy DVIDSHUB.

'Lay low' nghĩa là hạ gục, hạ đo ván (to cause to fall by a blow, to knock down, make prostrate; to overcome, defeat or destroy). -> be laid low = bị đánh gục, bị đánh chết, bị ốm liệt giường. Ngoài ra, lay low còn có nghĩa không thu hút sự chú ý, 'án binh bất động' (keep out of sight; avoid detection or attention).

Ví dụ
Your hurricane hands had to be trained to lay low an army of fiends.

That a small group of Arab confederates could inspire a movement that would lay low the great empires that had dominated the region for centuries would have seemed inconceivable a few decades earlier.

They started shooting as panicked (hoảng loạn) concertgoers (người đi xem hòa nhạc) scrambled (tranh cướp, tranh giành) for the exits or lay low to escape bursts of gunfire.

David Vitter, the husband and father of four cited forgiveness from God and wife, managed to dodge criminal charges, then cleverly lay low for a few months.

Phạm Hạnh

"Go awry" nghĩa là gì?

Kế hoạch 5 năm: nhặt nhạnh và xếp gọn hết đá trên bãi biển*. Photo courtesy See-ming Lee.

'Go awry' nghĩa là hỏng, thất bại (away from the correct course; amiss).

Ví dụ
How China's best-laid plans could go awry.

Tour plans of Chennai tourists go awry after Paris attacks.

US plans to capture the Islamic State's capital go awry.

Cooperating to shape strategic affairs globally, the European members of the Atlantic Alliance in many cases have described their policies as those of neutral administrators of rules and distributors of aid. But they have often been uncertain about what to do when this model was rejected or its implementation went awry.

Phạm Hạnh

* Every time I go to Wu Kai Sha, I see an old man with long flowing silver beard picking stones at the beach.

After some research, it turns out that he has been manually organising the stones on the beach for years voluntarily after noting that quite a number of people swim at the public beach which is not looked after by government officials.

And so day and night, he comes to the beach to sort the stones out into neatly organised piles so that other people can enjoy the beach.

What an incredible story — I was planning to shoot some documentary here perhaps but the locals told me that his story is quite well known and has been covered by televisions in Hong Kong already — though I have no idea where.

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