Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Have you ever heard somebody say “take 2” in English?

Have you ever gotten a bit jumbled in conversation and wanted to start over?

We all have those moments where we mix up our words or say the wrong thing, and then you want to start the conversation over.

We’re going to look at how “take 2” and other similar phrases can work well when you find yourself in that conversation.

We all need to start over sometimes, and now you will know how to do just that.

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Understanding Some Background

You may have heard us say “take 2” in one of our episodes.

You may have even heard that in a movie or if you were in some sort of theater production.

What is take 2?

This is something often associated with the movies.

What this means is that if something goes wrong in a scene or if you just want to reshoot something, you might say “take 2.”

You might have seen this in bloopers from a movie, where things go wrong and they have to reshoot it again.

We did a similar episode about such a thing that is worth checking out for some background.

How To Be Funny When You’re At A Loss For Words

This can help you to understand what sort of thing you should be thinking about or saying in this situation.

Take two is an informal way to say you need to start something again.

Let’s say you are telling a story and you jumble your words or make a mistake, you can say “take 2.”

It’s a fun little humorous way to begin again and signal that you made that mistake.

How and when should we use this in regular conversations?

You want to save this for informal or casual conversations.

You wouldn’t say something like this in a business meeting or more formal setting because it wouldn’t be appropriate.

If you were talking to a friend, you could say something like “So I was on the beach and I walked on the jfiwoajfioj. Ah! Take 2!”

You can use this as a way to surprise someone in conversation, or even to make someone laugh.

It’s a little self deprecating, which means you’re having fun at your own expense.

It’s a great and very natural way to poke fun at yourself when you make a mistake in conversation.

It’s a great conversation skill to learn and use!

Other Ways To Ask To Start Over

How else can you do this?

What other phrases can you use to start over in a fun way?

You always have to consider when this is appropriate and when it works, but we’ll get into that.

Here are the phrases that you can use which ultimately mean the same thing as “take 2” and can add some fun and humor in the right conversation.

  • Let me start (that) over: You are literally saying what you want to do. This is in the most literal form, and therefore it works perfectly. It’s like you are giving a necessary break from what you are saying to start over. It’s an acceptable way to say it, and it sounds natural. Sometimes we all need to reset and this is a great way to do just that. You do want to be aware of the intonation and be sure to put the emphasis on the word you made a mistake on. That’s a great effective way to pull it off in conversation. This example shows how it can work in conversation.

Lindsay: “SO where did you go last night?”

Michelle: “Oh I went to this new restaurant called Jazz Night, oh my gosh. Let me start that over…Jazz Sky!”

  • That’s not what I meant: This can mean something different such as if you used it in an argument. However here you are saying it right in the middle of conversation when you realize that you said the wrong thing. You are almost trying to correct yourself right there on the spot. This is where your tone of voice matters greatly. You want to be sure that you say this lightly so that it doesn’t come off as too aggressive. Keep it light and airy, and it will come across perfectly. Here you can see how this would work in conversation.

Michelle: “SO his number is 692-451…oh no , that’s not what I meant. 452.”

  • Scratch that: This can mean to just cancel something if you say it right away. This can work for an order for example if you are out at a restaurant. It can also work if you are giving somebody a list of items, and you want to correct something you said right there on the spot. You can see how it would work with this example.

Lindsay: “So buy peas, tomatoes, 5 potaters…ah, scratch that–potatOES!”

These phrases all work much in the same way that “take 2” does and so they are a great addition to your conversation.

A Great Way To Add Fun To Your Conversations

You might not realize all the positives that can come out of using these phrases.

These are really useful and can be humorous if used the right way in conversation.

Be sure to listen to the other episode to hear more examples as these will help to give you some background.

The important thing is to make something humorous if it’s appropriate, and so you have to know when it’s the right time.

Consider a job interview for example–that wouldn’t be the right time to say something like “take 2!”

It’s always important to remember when the situation or the person you are talking to warrants an appropriate humorous addition like this.

If you are talking to a friend or in a more casual setting, then these phrases can be fun to use.

You will feel natural and even like a native when you add fun and humor using one of these phrases.

This is a fun part of conversation that also helps with true and lasting connections.


When you mess up, don’t stop!

Keep going with one of these helpful phrases, and you can naturally continue on with your conversation.

These phrases will help to connect you and they will make you come off naturally and even humorously.

When you say something like Take 2 it might make others laugh because it feels dramatic and theatrical.

The situation may not warrant something so dramatic, but that adds to the humor even more.

Try one of these out as a fun way of starting over, and see how it can help you with connection.

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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