adjective: fishy

Today’s adjective has two meanings. One of them is very obvious, and the other is a little more surprising. The word is “fishy”.

The first meaning is for something or some place to smell like fish. This is usually considered bad even if we like fish. For example:

Last time I went to the fish market that fishy smell stayed in my clothes for a whole day.

My friend’s apartment smells really fishy right now. She must have been cooking it recently.

I like eating salmon because it doesn’t have a strong fishy smell.

The second meaning for “fishy” is that a certain person or situation is suspicious. For example:

 I didn’t go into business with that company because they seemed really fishy to me.

There’s something fishy about that guy. I don’t trust him.

There’s something fishy going on! Jack and Bill both asked me how I’m doing, but they never talk to me! What’s going on?

Just as a side note, you might be interested to know that the word “fish” does NOT take an “s” in its plural form. Therefore, we do NOT say “fishes”; instead we would say “I have five fish.” Two other animals that follow this same rule: sheep and deer. For example:

I saw two sheep at the zoo.

There are many deer in Nara, Japan.

Please don’t ask why “fish”, “sheep” and “deer” don’t take an “s”; it’s just one of those strange things in English we have to remember.


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