Archive for April 21, 2010

separable phrasal verb: fix up


Today’s phrasal verb is “fix up” and it has four different meanings.

1. to provide something for someone. For example:

A: I really need to borrow something to wear for my date. I have nothing to wear.

B: Don’t worry. I’ll fix you up.

2. to arrange a blind date for someone. For example:

I didn’t have a date for the party, so my friend fixed me up with his sister.

I was fixed up by my friend with his sister. (passive voice)

3. to renovate something (usually a house). For example:

I bought an old house, and it’s not in very good condition, so I have to fix it up.

This house will have to be fixed up. (passive voice)

4. to decorate a place. For example:

You should see Sally’s new apartment. She’s fixed it up really nicely.

The apartment was fixed up really nicely by Sally. (passive voice)

The phrasal verb “set up” has the same meaning as the second definition of  “fix up” so you can also say, “My friend set me up with his sister”.

There’s an interesting word we use to describe an old house that needs to be renovated (definition 3): We call it a “fixer-upper”. For example:

I bought a house really cheaply, but it’s a real fixer-upper. It’s going to cost me quite a bit of money to renovate it.

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