push back [postpone]

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Elaine Koh, Oct 14, 2008.

  1. Elaine Koh Senior Member

    Singapore English
    He asks them to push the meeting back by at least a week from October 25.

    Does it mean that the meeing will take place at least one week before October 25 or one week after October 25?

    Many thanks.
     
  2. bibliolept

    bibliolept Senior Member

    Northern California
    AE, Español
    It means that the meeting will take seven or more days after October 25. The phrasing is unusual enough that I can see why this might cause you some confusion.
     
  3. Elaine Koh Senior Member

    Singapore English
    Thanks, Bibliolept.
     
  4. Matching Mole

    Matching Mole Senior Member

    England, English
    Push back here means move further away (from the present), so if the meeting is on October 25 the meeting would be at the beginning of November at the earliest. "Back" is not used in the sense of "back in time" (further in the past), it means further away (from the present, into the future).

    This is the opposite of "bring forward". "Bring" implies towards (the present).

    "Push back", in this context, may be confusing, but I don't find it particularly unusual. Perhaps it is more common in Britain.
     
  5. Elaine Koh Senior Member

    Singapore English
    Thanks, Matching Mole, for your reply.
     
  6. Lotus001 New Member

    Oxford
    Portuguese - Portugal
    Hi,
    I heard a colleague of mine saying "I pushed back that project". What does the expression "push back" mean? Is this a rude way of saying "I refused that project"?
    Thank you in advance for your help. :)

    << Merged with previous thread. >>
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
  7. heypresto

    heypresto Senior Member

    South East England
    English - England
    He or she meant that he or she had postponed the project, or set it aside with the intention of reviving it at some time in the future.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  8. Sparky Malarky Senior Member

    Indiana
    English - US
    Sometimes a time frame is specified. I pushed that back two weeks. That project was pushed back to December.
     
  9. Lotus001 New Member

    Oxford
    Portuguese - Portugal
    Thank you very much!
     
  10. Lotus001 New Member

    Oxford
    Portuguese - Portugal
    Thank you very much!
     
  11. Packard

    Packard Senior Member

    USA, English
    This might be counter-intuitive. It is not being pushed back on the calendar. It is being pushed back on your schedule.
     
  12. Sparky Malarky Senior Member

    Indiana
    English - US
    But your schedule is kept on a calendar, isn't it?
     
  13. Packard

    Packard Senior Member

    USA, English
    Yes, but my schedule is related from today. So if I have something to do today, and I don't have time to do it today, it gets pushed back (further down on the list of things to do) and maybe I get to it tomorrow, or the day after.
     

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