Archive for October 24, 2010

idiom: to be all ears


Last week I heard someone on a TV show use an idiom that I’d like to write about today. The expression is to be “all ears”. This is used when we want to say to another person that we will listen to them with our full attention. For example:

A: I have something to tell you.

B: Ok, I’m all ears. What is it?


A: I have some great news for you guys!

B: Really? We’re all ears! What’s your news?


A: There’s something I have to say to you.

B: Ok, give me just one minute to finish this and then I’m all ears.

So, as you can see, this expression is used as a response to another person’s statement that they want to say something to us. We use it when talking about ourselves or our group. Therefore, we can say “I’m all ears.” or “We’re all ears.”, but we DON’T say things like, “He’s all ears.” or “You’re all ears.” If we say this, it will sound strange.

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