idiom: to be on the blink

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This week’s idiom is to be “on the blink”. We use it when we want to talk about a machine which is not working. For example:

Can I come over and do my laundry at your house? My washing machine is on the blink right now.

A: Is your stereo still on the blink?

B: No, I got it fixed, so we can listen to music now.

Nobody can reach Glen right now because his phone is on the blink.

A: Can I use your computer?

B: I’m sorry, but it’s on the blink. I’m going to take it in to get fixed tomorrow.

We usually use this expression to talk about machines that use electricity. Also, we usually use this expression to talk about personal machines that we own but not about public machines. If it’s a public machine such as a vending machine or a pay phone, we usually say “out of order”.

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