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up the ante

up the ante

Date: Jul 19 2012


1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

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“Each time I do a new movie, I always like to up the ante.”

- Actress Reese Witherspoon talks about her career. (Us Weekly)


- 女演员瑞茜·威瑟斯彭 (Reese Witherspoon) 谈论她的职业。


1. Definition - Study the definition.

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raise the standard

2. Use - Learn how the slang is used.

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To be a good poker player, you need to know how to take smart risks. If you’re reckless, you could lose a lot of money. But if you never make an aggressive move, you probably won’t win very much, either.

You could say that the same thing is true in life. It’s important to keep stretching yourself and trying new things, even though that sometimes means taking greater risks. That’s why the actress Reese Witherspoon tries to up the ante each time she makes a new movie. She doesn’t want to keep doing the same old thing. She wants to keep making bigger, better films.

In poker, an ante is a bet. When you up the ante in a game of poker, you increase the bet, or raise the stakes. Similarly, when you up the ante in life, you make something better, more desirable, or more valuable. Sometimes, that means taking a bigger risk. But the risk is worth it, because when you up the ante, the reward is usually bigger, too.

For instance, upping the ante at work could mean taking on new projects and putting in a lot of extra time and effort. Chances are, your efforts will be rewarded with a promotion, a raise, or at least some positive attention from your boss. On the other hand, if you don’t want to up the ante at your job, maybe you could just become a professional poker player instead.

Do you like to try new things and take risks? When was the last time you upped the ante in your own life?


1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

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“Rock music was always loud, but Motorhead really upped the ante by being the loudest band of all time.”

“I think we should up the ante this year and take a really amazing vacation.”

“By adding a new character, the sitcom writers tried to up the ante on their failing show.”


1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

It means you increase the importance or value of something.
by candycandice
TITO007 to increase a risk, price, demand, etcetera
by TITO007
Talia Do That means Reese likes to increase her demands or the risks in that movie in order to achieve a better result.
by Talia Do
 julito to be better than the previous film
by julito

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Log in to Comment

marija luiza


Yes, I do. I really love to take the risk in everything. When was the last time when I do a crazy thing? Well, I don’t remember, because I did loads of things. I believe that this is life, your try and try and again and again, but be careful you never have to feel bad about your own decisions, because this is life, just smile and be happy. You will won the next time :)

11:25 PM Aug 05 2012 |




10:11 AM Jul 25 2012 |

La Princesse de la vie


I’m about to take the biggest risk in my life ever, I hope I have taken the right decision .

06:24 PM Jul 22 2012 |




I have tried to up the ante in my life, turning my direction . I believe we will learn a lot by upping the ante in our life. This is my experience , beside we also learn more about ourselves, our life, and of course apping the ante makes us braver because we dare to take a risk. We take a move for a better situation and condition or at something. Don;t afraid to move on!!Laughing

05:22 PM Jul 21 2012 |



no relation between the  risk and apoker

apoker always aloser

10:11 PM Jul 19 2012 |




I hate apoker play,but I think that sometimes we need to take arisk specially in the work to show our ability & to create something new & different. I had up the ante in my life ,when I decided to see my step brothers who I didnt saw them all over my life.Its arisk for me,cuz if they didnt accept me,this would hurt my feeling.But alhumdullah I took the risk & they love me alot & take care of me now.The brotherhood is agift from allah.

09:58 PM Jul 19 2012 |

1 person likes this



i belive that the only way to progress in your life is to up the ante

05:01 PM Jul 19 2012 |




i believe that if you don’t take risks you won’t accomplish much in your life, i know that a lot of people fear that they’re gonna lose what they already have if they take risks but they have to realize that by taking risks every once in a while they are gonna accomplish so much. Besides, you would feel that you are alive instead of being on the safe side forever boringgggggggggggg.



i think it means every time make efforts for do something new in your life or at work.Efforts never fails.

10:42 AM Jul 19 2012 |


United States

A very good explanation of the phrase “up the ante” which is commonly used by native speakers.

Ngubo Sixtus

South Africa

i enjoy the subject.

03:04 AM Jul 19 2012 |

1 person likes this



United States

 i  like to try new video games! i don’t take risks because i’m afraid something will turn up. when i upped the ante was  yesterday, i improved in sleeping. i usually don’t sleep well but yesterday was so snoozy!

09:10 PM Jul 18 2012 |

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