Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Run into

If you run into someone, it means that you meet them unexpectedly somewhere. You never planned to meet with them, so in most cases it is a coincidence that you happen to be in the same place at the same time.

1.  If you’re in a profession that deals with a lot of people each day, you are bound to run into a client, patient, colleague or acquaintance in any number of public places (outside of work).

2. It’s great to run into a friend that you haven’t seen for a long time.

3. I often run into students of mine at different malls, walking along the beach and especially at the supermarket.

4.  Have you ever run into a person you know in another city or in another country? That’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s almost unbelievable when it happens to you. You realize what a “small world” it is.

5. Are there people that you really don’t want to run into? When you run into someone you don’t want to talk to it’s kind of awkward (uncomfortable).

6. If you keep running into the same person (like it happens in the movies), it could be one of 5 things: (1) It might be “destiny”, (2) that person may be stalking you (following you), (3) you may be stalking that person, (4) it could just be a coincidence after all or (5) perhaps you are living in a really small town.

7. If you run into an “enemy” (or a person you’re not fond of/ dislike), do you at least say “hi” or wave at them because it’s such a coincidence, or do you try to avoid them or ignore them and keep walking?


  1. Love it Frank! Example number 6 is really funny. It's awful when I run into someone that I don't see in a long time and I can't remember the person's name.

  2. Hi Michel,
    Happy New Year! (First time I'm speaking to you in 2012).
    Yes... it's awkward when you can't remember someone's name! I wish I had thought of that as an example... but I will remember that and use it as a conversation point in class...
    When you get a chance you should come and visit... or spend the night... we have lot's of space here for your son to run around. Is it a son or a daughter?

  3. Hi just want to know is that phrase run out synonymous with come across ? I mean are they interchangeable. Thanks.

  4. Hi... Come across is a totally different phrasal verb. No connection at all.

    Come across means to find something by coincidence/ something you were not planning... so in that sense, it is very similar to "run into" which is to meet someone in an unplanned way... a coincidence or "accident".

    Last week I CAME ACROSS a store where they sell old 2nd hand LPs. I bought some to put in my classroom. It was an unexpected and pleasant find. I didn't know that they were still being sold.

    Yesterday I RAN INTO a student of mine at the supermarket. I didn't know that he shopped there. We had a brief conversation and continued shopping.

    Maybe you were thinking of run into and not RUN OUT, which is what happens when something is finished:

    I RAN OUT of shampoo today, so I used my daughter's baby shampoo. Not the best, but it did the job!

    Hope that helps!

  5. thx for ur reply.just wanted to ask if i can use bump into to mean "to meet someone by chance=(run into)".

  6. Yes... exactly... run into & bump into are synonyms... exactly the same in every sense.

  7. Guess who I ran into on my way to the mall? Your favorite aunt!