#IOTW: Turning Tables

Hi, Fellas! How are you doing?

I have been listening to Adele’s Turning Table lately and I found an interesting fact about ‘turning tables.’ It turns out that ‘turning tables’ is an idiom.


This time we will discuss what ‘Turning Tables’ means and how to use it in sentences. The idiom of ‘turning tables’ is originated from a board (table) game called ‘Backgammon.’


Backgammon is a two-player game. To win, a player should make all his checkers outside the board. There are two 2 dices & 15 checkers for each player. One got the whites and the other got the browns. The player needs to set a strategy for keeping his opponent’s checkers inside the board. If the opponent leads the game, the player should ‘turn’ the favor by setting a strategy to win.

Well, that’s a bit of the idiom’s history. Now, let’s see how we should use it in sentences.

In general, ‘turning (the) tables’ mean ‘to flip (membalik) the situation (keadaan)’ You can use the idiom if you are:

(1) Flipping somebody’s favor into bad luck or vice versa.

Let say you used to chase a girl you liked the most but she somehow ignored you. Now you don’t like her anymore and she instead likes you and chases you. To express this situation, you can say:

“I used to chase her but I turned the table on her.” which means “Dulu aku yang ngejar-ngejar dia tapi sekarang malah kebalikannya.”

You can also use the idiom if you are:

(2) Describing a situation that flips your thought.

E.g. “I was happy to help Juki prank Bob but Juki turned the table on me!” which means “Aku santai aja bantuin Juki ngerjain si Bob eh ternyata malah aku yang dikerjain.”

Another use of the idiom is to describe:

(3) A situation that is reversed and gains upperhand (unggul.)

E.g. “Group A lead the game until Group B turned the table on them by 5-3.”

Note that you have to use the preposition “on” after “turned the table” for those cases. However, you can also use the idiom without “on” as in:

“That’s it. Don’t turn the table. Everyone knows that you are a liar.” which means “Udahlah. Jangan memutarbalikkan fakta. Semua orang tahu kamu tukang bohong.”

“Please, stop your turning tables. I can’t keep up with that.” which means “Tolong dong, hentikan permainan kamu mainin hati aku. Aku udah nggak tahan.”

Did you get it guys? I hope you did.

Well, thank you so much for keeping up with us. Thanks for all the favourites and retweets.


We thank these guys for those awesome pictures.



Compiled and written by @wisznu at @EnglishTips4u on September 10, 2015


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s