It figures that + would

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VicNicSor

Banned
Russian
It figures that she’d be mad at you, after what you did. (Longman dictionary)
It figures that I’d break my leg as soon as the skiing season started. (Macmillan dictionary)
it figures that he wouldn't come (Collins dictionary)

Are these phrases said after the events happened?:
Do they mean:
It's not surprising that I broke my leg as soon as the skiing season started.
It's not surprising that she is/was mad at you, after what you did.

Thanks.
 
  • 8thnote

    Senior Member
    English-Southern US
    "It figures" means "it makes sense to me" or "I can understand why" in the first and third sentences.

    In "It figures that I'd break my leg as soon as the skiing season started" the phrase is being used to express irony. As in "it's just my luck that I'd break my leg.....".
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    Sorry, I don't understand what time the "would" refer to here? We have "would" in the main clause and the simple past in the time clause. Does the whole sentence refer to the past (as I guessed) or is it conditional?
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    the events referred to had already happened
    Sorry, I shoud've clarified what events I was talking about. I mean -- not only the events in the simple past (in the time clause), but also the events in the main clause ("would" clause) -- all they already happened by the time of speech. Is that correct?
     

    Aardvark01

    Senior Member
    British English (Midlands)
    These phrases are said after the events happened and we are wondering why we failed to anticipate them.

    It figures that she’d be mad at you, after what you did.
    (You should expect people to be mad when people do what you did)
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Do I need to get out more, or am I right in saying that we don't use the phrase "it figures" in this sense in BE at all?
    That and the horrid "Go figure!".
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    The OED lists "colloq. phr. it (or that) figures" as "orig. and chiefly U.S."

    P.S., we will keep "go figure!" on our side of the pond, and you are more than welcome to keep "innit" on yours. :)
     

    Aardvark01

    Senior Member
    British English (Midlands)
    To "figure" is to establish a symbol from which one may draw wisdom for future reference, typically after some unforeseen event.
    "Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste"
    [A description of Cupid - Midsummer Night's Dream]
     
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