left over vs to spare

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A-friend

Senior Member
Persian (Farsi)
Hi there
Imagine juts before beginning of a party you as the organizer receive a message that there will be some unwanted guests; you worrying about the food you've prepared that whether it would suffice all or not. The guests come and everything goes well and the party comes to an end. A friend of yours who knew all the story says:
- Everyone had their portions and we still have lots of food................
Which one of the following choices would sound better in the above self-made sentence:
a) left over
b) to spare
For me, they both mean the same.
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    "Left over" sounds normal in that sentence. "To spare" sounds a little odd to me. It would sound better to me if you used it in a remark made before or during the party: Eat all you want. There's food to spare here on the table.
     
    Last edited:

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    I agree with both of owl's points.
    I don't think "unwanted guests" is what you meant. If the guests were really unwanted, you would worry about how to keep them away, not about how to feed them.
     

    A-friend

    Senior Member
    Persian (Farsi)
    "Left over" sounds normal in that sentence. "To spare" sounds a little odd to me. It would sound better to me if you used it in a remark made before or during the party: Eat all you want. There's food to spare here on the table.
    Thank you very much Owlman, but I would need to ask another question! Then could you please let me know why both of the following sentences sound normal:
    - We purchased everything and we still had money left over.
    - We purchased everything and we still had money to spare.
    I've seen both versions somewhere (I do not remember when and where!) SO I'm almost sure both versions would be natural. :)
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I understand "money to spare" in your latest example to mean "money to spare for some other use." The phrase doesn't really mean "leftover money."

    I thought "food to spare" in your original example was marginal, but it seemed to make some sense if you were talking about an abundance of fresh food on a table at the beginning of a party. I wouldn't use "food to spare" to talk about leftover food that people have already picked through. Maybe somebody else would, but I wouldn't.
     

    A-friend

    Senior Member
    Persian (Farsi)
    I understand "money to spare" in your latest example to mean "money to spare for some other use." The phrase doesn't really mean "leftover money."

    I thought "food to spare" in your original example was marginal, but it seemed to make some sense if you were talking about an abundance of fresh food on a table at the beginning of a party. I wouldn't use "food to spare" to talk about leftover food that people have already picked through. Maybe somebody else would, but I wouldn't.
    My intention in my original example was the intact food that no one has used it and no one has picked through. But what I got from your posts is:
    in both examples of mine (food / money), the only possible choice would be "leftover" irrespective of the fact that by my original post, I meant the food which nobody has picked through / no one has taken from.
    Do you confirm my understanding Owlman? :)
     
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