Straight arrow

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Silverobama, May 21, 2012.

  1. Silverobama

    Silverobama Senior Member

    Chongqing
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
    Hi,

    I got the term "straight arrow" from my teacher and she's a Chinese teaching in my university.

    Here is her example sentence:

    He's a straight arrow and we all trust him.

    I've heard of the idiom "straight as an arrow" but "straight arrow" quite new to my ear.

    Does it make sense to you to mean "an honest person"?

    Thanks a lot
     
  2. Elwintee Senior Member

    London England
    England English
    It makes sense, but it is not idiomatic. 'Straight as an arrow' is, as you say, the normal phrase.
     
  3. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    In AE, we can (and do) say He's a straight arrow.
     
  4. Silverobama

    Silverobama Senior Member

    Chongqing
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect

    Thanks a lot
     
  5. Elwintee Senior Member

    London England
    England English
    Ah, me! My lack of BE/AE bilingualism lets me down again. Sorry if I've misled you, Silverobama.
     
  6. Philolog65 New Member

    Moscow
    Russian - Russia
    I would like to add something to this discussion - how weird would it sound to a native speaker if I named an English club "Straight Arrow English", suggesting that we are honest with our customers? Thanks in advance for sharing your opinion.
     
  7. Florentia52

    Florentia52 Modwoman in the attic

    Wisconsin
    English - United States
    I would guess, based on Elwintee's post above, that it would not make sense to a speaker of BE.

    As an AE speaker, even though I understand what "straight arrow" might mean, it would still sound strange, and the meaning would not be immediately obvious. If anything, I would take it to mean that the club practiced English that was rigorously correct and not colloquial.

    I also have to wonder why a club would have customers, or why there should be any question about a club's honesty.
     
  8. Philolog65 New Member

    Moscow
    Russian - Russia
    Thanks for your detailed reply, Florentia. In fact, I've been thinking about the logo depicting an arrow that would symbolize an ambition to reach the goal. So most people would just see the picture of this arrow, but those familliar with the saying would see another meaning that it might have... To answer your question, "Club" may not be the right word since it offers a premium membership. Talking about honesty, nowadays there are too many English clubs with catchy slogans "learn English in three weeks!". Our goal is to be differentiated from them.
     
  9. Florentia52

    Florentia52 Modwoman in the attic

    Wisconsin
    English - United States
    We may be wandering into an area of cultural differences rather than linguistic ones. "Straight-Arrow English Club" would sound strange in the U.S., but it might be a perfectly good name in Moscow.

    I agree with you that we would not use the word "club" to describe an enterprise that charged a fee and promised "Learn English in three weeks."
     
  10. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    Weird. I don't recommend it.
     

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