#92 – TO MOVE UP

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Hello, you’re listening to ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’. My name’s Luke Thompson. This is phrasal verb number 92 and just before I begin you might notice that if you’ve listened to all of these episodes that the sound quality tends to change. Sometimes I’ve got a deep sounding voice. Sometimes the quality is good. Sometimes it’s not so good. Well, the fact is that I record these episodes in various different situations because I’m recording them in little moments of spare time that I have during the day. Sometimes I’m using my mobile phone. Sometimes if I’m at my desk in front of the computer and I’m using the microphone on my laptop. Sometimes if I’m… if it’s all connected I use my good quality microphone. That explains why the sound quality is different in each episode. Sorry about that but it’s just a way that I’ve managed to do this by squeezing in these episodes in little moments of free time. There was a phrasal verb there. Did you notice that? ‘To squeeze something in’. That’s not the phrase that I’m focusing on in this episode. No, it’s not. This one… The focus of this episode is to look at the phrase ‘move up’, okay? ‘Move up’ and it’s very common and it’s got a few different uses. We’re going to look at three or four of those things.

So, the first one, I’d like to talk about, first definition means ‘to change your position in order to make space for someone or something’. So, it’s basically to, kind of, just literally move your body in order to make space. If you can imagine that:

People are sitting at a table to have lunch and you’ve got your lunch on a tray and you bring it over and you realise there isn’t space near you but if people… what am I saying? So, you want to sit down but there’s no space and you say to your colleagues – Could you move up a little bit? Could you move up a bit?

So, that means, obviously, to just move your whole body to make some space.

– Could you move up a bit, please?

– Could everyone move up a little bit, just to make some space, thanks.

Okay. So, that’s the first one ‘to change your position to make some space’.

The next one is to, like, get a better job, okay? To get promoted.

– I don’t think I’m ready to move up just yet

okay? Or:

– I’ve been looking at Jeff’s performance recently and, putting aside for the moment, you know, some of the controversial things that he’s done in the past, I think that if you look at the figures, actually, his work’s been very good. Now, I think it might be time to move him up to the next available position.

‘To move someone up’, okay? So,

– The win has moved her up in the world rankings.

So, in tennis, for example, Andy Murray beat… Who would it be he beat?. He beat someone. Let’s say he beat Roger Federer.

– So, after beating Roger Federer on Saturday Andy Murray has moved up in the world tennis rankings

for example. It’s not true. It’s not true. I don’t know actually where Andy Murray is in terms of the world’s rankings. So, ‘to move up’ means to, like, change, to be promoted, let’s say.

And then we’ve got to just generally increase to a higher level which is the opposite of drop. So, you could say that, you know:

– Looking at the figures here, the biscuit sales have moved up significantly over the last six months.

There’s an example meaning that they’ve increased, they’ve gone up, they’ve risen. And we also have the fixed phrase: ‘to move up in the world’.

– Well, you’re moving up in the world, aren’t you?

For example:

Normally, you know, a friend of yours, normally takes the bus but then you see them stepping out of a nice black BMW car and you say – Is that your car? You’re moving up in the world, aren’t you?

meaning that you’ve improved your social status. ‘To move up in the world’ – to improve your social status.

– She wanted to move up in the world.

So, she married Paul McCartney, for example. That could be a story about Heather Mills.

That’s it for this episode of ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’. Don’t forget to visit teacherluke.co.uk where you will find transcripts for all of the other episodes and there will be a transcript for this one very soon. The transcripts are written by listeners of this podcast and I should say, actually, at this point that recently I visited ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’ and it’s not as popular as ‘Luke’s English Podcast’. ‘Luke’s English Podcast’ has been downloaded something like 2.5m times in the last year which is incredible, really. ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’ is not as popular, maybe not as well known but it is becoming more and more popular all the time. And when I started doing this the episodes were getting, you know, three, four, five hundred views. I say views, three or four, five hundred listens on average. Now, I’ve just checked number 91, which was ‘to move on’ and that’s got 5.9 thousand plays now, nearly 6 thousand plays and in total ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’ has had over…, it’s had nearly 6 hundred thousand listens in total. So, that’s pretty good. It’s becoming more and more popular and it’s one of the most commonly visited pages on teacherluke.co.uk as well. So, that’s good. I hope that it becomes more and more popular as more and more people discover this. Do tell your friends, if your friends are learning English too. Do tell them about ‘A Phrasal Verb a Day’. Spread the knowledge.

That’s it for this episode. I’ll speak to you again soon but for now – it’s goodbye.

(Thanks Andzrej for another transcript)

  • Fabiano

    Hey Luke. Nice podcasts. Thanks for helping us learn English. My question is: Would it be ok if I said to someone sitting at a table in a restaurant (the tables are very close to each other) ‘Excuse me, would you mind moving your table up a little bit. It´s too tight for me to sit at my table’?

  • riddle

    My friend is very mean. When we go for a paint to the bar and I ask him to move up a bit, he tells me to go to hell. No, actually, he always moves up when asked to. That was just a bit of a joke for you – readers of this comment. You know, Luke, I wonder why so few people write comments here. There are so many listeners of these podcasts. They should put more emphasise on practise!! There’s no way round it. If one wants to move up in the language ladder, then it is a must to practise! I don’t know if that makes a lot of sense ( the former sentence) but anyway, I had a bit of practise, didn’t I? I have a lot on LuKE but I manage to squeeze A phrasal verb a day in. See what I just did? I just used another phrasal verb. Luke, if I’ll keep on listening to your voice, I’m going to turn into your clone or whatever. I’ve noticed that I talk like you. Maybe I should use other content to learn English. No, actually, I’m not going to change anything. I’ll will stick with your podcasts because they rock! They’re the bests out there in the podcast world. Can’t wait to see your next phrasal verbs, although they’re a bit less popular.

  • Andrzej

    Luke, one of my dictionaries says that the fixed phrase ‘to move up in the world’ has got an ironic meaning. Always? Thank you in advance if you find time to write an explanation.

    • It’s not always ironic, but it is often used sarcastically.