show-off ? (make a show of)

Revontuli

Senior Member
Turkey-Turkish
Hello,

I would like to know if there's any idiom which would mean ''to do something not really wanting it, but just to seem sincere or polite to others''. I'm not sure if ''show off'' can be used for that or is there any other expression/idiom ?

Thank you,
Revontuli
 
  • nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Hello,

    I would like to know if there's any idiom which would mean ''to do something not really wanting it, but just to seem sincere or polite to others''. I'm not sure if ''show off'' can be used for that or is there any other expression/idiom ?

    Thank you,
    Revontuli
    To make a show of? I am not sure if it's what you want though :)

    38.make a show of, to be ostentatious about; affect: Whenever there are visitors, the bosses make a show of being nice to their employees.
     

    Revontuli

    Senior Member
    Turkey-Turkish
    Hello Nichec,

    Thank you very much for your reply.

    I don't know if this expression can also be used for what I exactly mean...But my earlier explanation wasn't correct , so it's my fault.

    For example, students sometimes do projects/homework not really wanting to learn something but only because they're obliged to do that and to show their teachers they have a project,so they won't fail.

    Can I use the expression that you've given in such a situation ? Or another one ?

    Thank you!
     
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    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Hello Nichec,

    Thank you very much for your reply.

    I don't know if this expression can also be used for what I exactly mean...But my earlier explanation wasn't clear enough, so it's my fault.

    For example, students sometimes do projects/homework not really wanting to learn something but only because they're obliged to do that and to show their teachers they have a project,so they won't fail.

    Can I use the expression that you've given in such a situation ? Or another one ?

    Thank you!
    Well, I suppose when you make a show of something, you do it just to gain something you want, and most likely you will never ever do it if you don't have to.

    Err, did any of us do our homework because we wanted to when we were students? :D

    But something about this phrase used in your context bugs me, Panj, we need you here.....................
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    To make a show of ... has three quite distinct meanings in my mind, though I can only find support for two of them.
    The first is to do something in an ostentatious, flashy, way that is intended to impress and to draw attention to the do-er.
    The second is to hold someone up to ridicule - rather like making an exhibition of someone.
    The third is related to the first, but the purpose is not to draw attention, almost the reverse because in making this kind of show the purpose is to deceive, to pretend. For example, to make a show of being entirely friendly with someone for business or social advantage, while suppressing a deeply-felt longing to suspend them head downwards in a barrel of sour ale.

    So you could make a show of politeness, or indeed in nichec's example the bosses could make a show of being nice to their employees, without necessarily being ostentatious or showy about it. As long as it is insincere, you are making a show of it :)

    To pass oneself is perhaps similar.
    I never bothered learning German properly when I was in Berlin, but I picked up enough to pass myself in company.
     

    Revontuli

    Senior Member
    Turkey-Turkish
    Hello Panj,

    Thank you very much for your reply.

    As far as I can understand,''to make a show of'' with its 3rd meaning is the one I should use. So can we say that the student just makes show of doing the project...?

    I never bothered learning German properly when I was in Berlin, but I picked up enough to pass myself in company.
    That explains ''to pass oneself'' so well...:D But,as a German admirer,it surprises me !
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    For example, students sometimes do projects/homework not really wanting to learn something but only because they're obliged to do that and to show their teachers they have a project,so they won't fail.
    Hello Revontuli. I'm not sure if this is what you're looking for, but you might say:
    All the students did their projects but quite a few of them were just going through the motions
    i.e. they did their projects but only in a kind-of robotic way because they had to, not because of any enthusiasm on their part.
     

    Revontuli

    Senior Member
    Turkey-Turkish
    Hello Ewie,

    Thank you very much for your reply.

    I can use that expression too.

    But I'm not sure how to use ''make a show of''. Should I say ''the students were making a show of doing the project'' ?
     
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    Revontuli

    Senior Member
    Turkey-Turkish
    What Ewie first suggested, ''to go through the motions'', is exactly what I'd like to know.But other expressions are as useful. So,I thank you both for your suggestions.
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Panj posted (post 6) because I asked him to, and I would like to thank him here :)

    Panj is not making a show of being nice to members in WRF, time has proven that he indeed cares (or rather it's his nature to be nice), and I am not just going through the motions when I reply to the threads, I always try to find the best answer I can, maybe I search online, or I ask someone. (Though ewie, being too smart, is always right, he doesn't even have to try :rolleyes:)
     

    Revontuli

    Senior Member
    Turkey-Turkish
    Thank you for telling Panj that I needed help,Nichec.You're very kind!
    And thank you for your reply Panj. And yes,you're always helpful:)
    I also thank you for your suggestions and help,Ewie and El Escoses

    And I'm not making a show of being nice now either!
     
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