the one time

Gabriel Malheiros

Senior Member
Portuguese - Brazil
Hi, there

I was watching a movie (The Intern - 2015 ) and two people were having a sentimental conversation, then one of them said:

"The one time I don't have my hanky"

What does "the one time" mean in this case?

Thank you very much!
 
  • waltern

    Senior Member
    English - USA
    The meaning is something like "I always have my hanky (handkerchief), except for now, the one time I actually need it (because I'm about to cry)".
     

    Gabriel Malheiros

    Senior Member
    Portuguese - Brazil
    The meaning is something like "I always have my hanky (handkerchief), except for now, the one time I actually need it (because I'm about to cry)".
    Thank you, Waltern.
    Is this expression used much often? Like: you often come across a certain store, but you hardly ever buy something from it. Then, one day, you need to get something from this store, but you can't find one(you don't know the address). Could I say something like : "the one time I need this store"....? Or would it sound odd to you?

    Thank you.
     

    waltern

    Senior Member
    English - USA
    Yes, that would be perfectly understandable - "The one time I need a Starbucks...(I can't find one)"
     

    Phoebe1200

    Senior Member
    Russian-Russia
    Thank you, Cagey.:)

    Henry Danger, TV series
    Context: Ray and Schwoz have cooked guacamoles each and want to know whose is better. So they have Henry taste it and he says that Schwoz's is better. Ray protests to it.

    Ray: I want a second opinion. Where's Charlotte?
    Henry: She's not here.
    Ray: She's late for work! Great! The one time we're doing something important.

    I can't really hear if he actually says "the" but it should be used here, right?
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Yes.

    You need to understand this is used somewhat figuratively. He could say the same thing again in two weeks. He's not really counting the times. He just means he really needs her and wishes she was there. (There were many other times he didn't need her as much and she was there.) So "the one time" is probably a bit of an exaggeration.

    Can you imagine in a business they only did something important one time? :)
     
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