Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Do you know how to express a situation in English when someone gets knocked down twice?

What can you say to that person when they have suffered two significant setbacks?

How can you empathize with them? This is a key skill for connection.

In today’s episode you’ll get some new tools to connect with someone in this situation.

Today we’re focusing on the phrase “to add insult to injury.”

This is not a question from a listener today but it’s a super fun expression that is kind of timeless.

You will hear it if you are out in the world interacting with native speakers and you should know what it means and be able to use it.

I thought of this topic idea last night while I was watching “Wisdom of the Crowd” which is a new TV series about a social network online where they solve major crimes by submitting evidence from the public.

 The two guys in the scene wake up at the office, having passed out and the manager comes over.

One of the guys gets up and gets coffee for the manager but he does not get coffee for the other guy because he’s mad at the other guy.

The guy who didn’t receive coffee feels offended- then he does something else to offend the guy again.

 And how does the guy respond?

 He says “Jeez! Insult to injury?”

What comes to mind when you think of this phrase?

 It conveys the idea that you have been harmed once, now the person is going to do something else to harm you again.


It’s good to learn these very native, natural ways to express an idea.

In this case, this phrase is an important way to express empathy if you are witnessing the situation.

If you can identify and verbally point out that they have suffered two setbacks then they will feel heard and you will create a real human connection.

What questions do you have today?

Let us know in the comments below.

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