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Word of the Week: Jede Woche ein neues Rätsel über Bedeutung, Verwendung und Herkunft eines englischen Worts
Quentin took one look at the huge pile of boxes which had to be carried down into the cellar and shook his head. “Oh, sorry, I have this letter from my doctor, I really can't carry heavy weights and he said I shouldn't go up and down stairs too much.”
His best friend Philip gave him a flat stare. “Man up, Quentin.” By which he meant:
a) Come on, just do what has to be done.
b) Sorry to hear about your poor state of health.
c) Go back upstairs until I'm finished.
Here is the correct answer.
To “man up” means to stop whining and act like a man. It's usually used to encourage – or bully – someone into doing something they don't want to do, maybe something strenuous, like helping a friend move house, or something unpleasant, like confessing a mistake or a crime to someone. It is a direct and blunt request to be brave or to accept the consequences of your actions. Interestingly, the demand to “man up” is not exclusively addressed to men. Women can be requested to “man up”, too, if the need arises
a) What, you lost your brother's smartphone at the club last night? Man up, dude, you're going to have to tell him.
b) Don't tell me it hurts, I know it hurts! Now man up and push.
c) The home team really needs to man up and score if they want to make it through to the next round of the tournament.