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It Has Nothing To Do With Me!

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QUESTION:
A listener, Ali, wants to know what it means when someone says, “It has nothing to do with me.”

ANSWER:
The expression “to have nothing to do with (someone/something)” is used in three main ways.

First, we use it when we want to say that something isn’t related to me, it doesn’t concern me, or it does not involve me.
For example:
- “Why are you asking me all of these questions about the new building?  I’m not on the planning committee and it has nothing to do with me.”
You are saying, very strongly, that you are not involved in the planning of the new building and this person should stop asking you questions.

A second way to use this expression is to mean that you are innocent of something.
For example:
- “I’m sorry that your car broke down, but it has nothing to do with me driving it yesterday.”
You are saying that although the car you borrowed from this person broke down today, it is not because of anything you did while you drove it yesterday.  In other words, you are innocent and did nothing wrong.

A third way that this expression is used is to strongly refuse friendship or contact with someone.
For example:
- “I asked her for a date, but after I made a joke about her in front of the whole class, she said she will have nothing to do with me.”
This person is saying that the girl he asked for a date will absolutely not have any contact with him, because of what he did earlier.  This sounds a little old-fashioned these days.  A more common way to say this would be:
- “I asked her for a date, but after I made a joke about her in front of the whole class, she said she doesn’t want to have anything to do with me.”

“To have nothing to do with (someone/something) can mean any of these three things and the context (situation; words used around it) will tell you which one it is.

Thanks for the question, Ali, and I hope this is helpful!

~ Lucy

31 Responses to “It Has Nothing To Do With Me!”

  1. Peter Says:

    Very comprehensive Lucy. As ever, you have covered all the angles to it. You know, the materials you offer are very functional and helpful , but what I like the best is your word arrangement . It is like, you put words together in a way that they burrow in our brains as we read them.And, The interesting thing is you do it consciously, not subconsciously.

    All hats off to you Lucy, Attagirl,

  2. Peter Says:

    It is better to say burrow and live for ever .

  3. Peter Says:

    As we r reading them. Apology for my rookie mistake. definitely ,I am a piece of work.all wacko

  4. Nina Says:

    If I am listening to another podcast which I’m comparing with yours. Could I say, this new podcast is not interessting. It has nothing to do with ESL ! ?

  5. emiliano Says:

    Before listening to Jeff and Lucy I have listened a lot of english courses that has nothing to do with their podcast lessons and as a matter of fact since I have been listening to their ESL Podcast my English has improved evidently.
    I have nothing to do with this success because my only work has been listening to them day after day without studying nearly nothing as I did before.
    Actually it has been an amusing way of learning English that I recomend to everyone who wants to learn it and he is so near me as to hear my advise.
    Thank you Lucy you are always my Muse when I am thinking about English expressions and the way of
    saying them.

  6. Kobe.Su Says:

    i heard a lot it has nothing to do with me while m at work,with the first two expression, m not involved and m innocent. sometimes it’s really annoying to hear ppl denying thier responsility and try to make themselves sounds innocent. for some case, it has nothing to do with the failure but the attitude.

  7. Free Water Says:

    This explanation is very clear.Before I read your answers I think this expression only have the first two means.The third one is vivid.

  8. Nina Says:

    Thanks Emiliano, I found the answer of my question in your sentence !

  9. Peter Says:

    Stating the obvious my friend, They are not the only one but the best in town.Trust me, I know what I am talking about. I have done my share of soul searching in the podcast realm ,and I am telling you no one can even come close to them. When it comes to English , they are a safe shelter. I am just wondering if anybody can beat them to it , Shakespeare perhaps.

  10. Dr. Lucy Tse Says:

    Nina:
    Yes, you can use this phrase just as you’ve indicated in your post. As you say, Emiliano has given us very good examples of how to use “to have nothing to do with” in exactly that way. Thanks, Emiliano.

    Also, thanks to all for your nice comments, including Peter. It’s been a long time since anyone has called me a girl (smile).

  11. Nina Says:

    Thanks for your answer Lucy. I’m sure you are a nice “girl”. Don’t forget we all had seen you on the video next to Jeff !

  12. HAMEY Says:

    THANK YOU LUCY….. I DON’T KNOW HOW TO THANK YOU.. HOPE YOU ARE GOING TO BE WITH JEFF ON 22ND JULY. HEHE.. AND ALSO HOPE THERE WONT BE ANY CAMERA PROBLEM.

  13. emiliano Says:

    We all have seen Lucy close to Jeff on the video and we know quite well she is a very nice girl but I have a question to ask her……..please if you don’t mind tell us when is your birth day as we can wish you always a “happy birthday” as we do with Jeff on the 24th of September….
    The other day I was thinking about asking you about it and I don’t know the way of doing it, this is just
    the chance……

    Thank you in advance.

  14. Nina Says:

    I agree with Emiliano. Don’t be shy Lucy. I think that we all would like to know your birthday. Please… Emiliano are you sure that Jeff was born on the 24th of september? He is always kidding. Perhaps this date is wrong?!

  15. Peter Says:

    Emiliano my friend , I have an inside scope for you . Jeff alluded in one of his audio podcast that Lucy is 28ish. My friend ,Never ask women about their age.

    If you ask me ,Take it out with Jeff. I am backing you up on this man,and I bet all our podcast mates want to know more about our dear mentor Lucy.

  16. Peter Says:

    No mean to be intrusive Lucy. I hope you dont misconstrue our geniune affection towards you and ofcourse jeff. We dont intend to make you feel nucomfortable.

  17. Peter Says:

    We meant well ,Lucy

    Peace out

  18. ESLPodcast Google Group Says:

    great advice.

    Thks

  19. Dr. Lucy Tse Says:

    It’s nice of you to ask. My birthday is May 4th.

    When I was growing up in Arizona, I often joked that everyone else celebrated my birthday a day late. Why? Cinco de Mayo (Fifth of May in Spanish) is a holiday in some parts of Mexico and in the Western United States to celebrate Mexican heritage. It’s a holiday for everyone, whether they are Mexican/Mexican American or not, to do a lot of celebrating, partying, and drinking. So I often joked that my birthday is Cuatro de May (Fourth of May) and everyone else celebrated it a day late.

    It’s certainly possible that Jeff intimated/suggested that I’m around 28 in a podcast. If that’s what he said, then who am I to argue? After all, Jeff is never wrong, right?

  20. emiliano Says:

    Thank you Lucy, very kind of your part and sure we all are happy as we know a little more of this so nice girl that we listen every day talking with Jeff and who makes all the funny and inteligent scripts.

    Tauro? a honest and determined person…..Yes, I think it fits you quite well.
    I am reminding one of the podcast where you acted as Fátima going on a date with a drunked Burt who wanted a goodnight kiss…, I laughed a lot listening to you and Jeff, also the continuation was incredible.

    Nina, yes, Jeff birthday is 24th of September same day as Scott fitzgerald a relative of his mother who was born also in Saint Paul. I know it because Jeff told us in an English Cafe that I have listened six or seven times till now.

    Thank you Lucy again, you are a lucky girl who has great celebrations a day after her birthday…..uuhm interesting matter….I want to know now which mexican celebration is that….going to see.

  21. Nina Says:

    No secrets anymore about the birthday of Jeff and Lucy. That’s great ! They are everyday in our ears and in our minds, aren’t they ? Thank you Emiliano. You are a very lovely boy… You are always answering! I think I will celebrate this two birthdays every year.

  22. emiliano Says:

    I have now more information that I have to thank you Lucy, this is what I have seen:

    ” The Battle of Puebla took place on May 5, 1862 near the city of Puebla during the French intervention in Mexico. The battle ended in a victory for the Mexican Army against the occupying French forces. The victory is celebrated today during the festivities of Cinco de Mayo (5th of May).

    On September 16, 1862, President Juárez declared that the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla would be a national holiday, regarded as “Battle of Puebla Day” or “Battle of Cinco de Mayo”. Although today it is recognized in some countries as a day of Mexican heritage celebration, it is a federal holiday in Mexico.”

    Well, I think it is an interesting matter that I want to share because I love mexicans and their country.
    Thanks a lot Lucy.

  23. Polo Says:

    Hi Lucy. I know that it has nothing to do with Ali’s question, but I’d like to see your picture in the screen. You have a pretty lovely voice. Npt be worry if the picture no flatters you.I believe all asian ladies have a singular charm. I am married with my “chinita”, as I call her, happily married. By.

  24. Pedro Reyes Says:

    Hi everybody, I’m from Mexico and I want to say thanks to Emiliano for his kindly words about my country and its people. Although I’ve been listening ESL podcasts for a long time this is the first time that I’m participating with my comments and, I want to take the opportunity to say thank you Dr. Lucy , and Dr. Jeff for their great great contribution to our learning of the English language.I’m apologize for the mistakes that I made in my writing, but
    I’m on the way to learn this marvelous language,and of course Dr. Jeff and Dr Lucy are my best teachers. Thans again

  25. HAMEY Says:

    hi lucy… i am sending this mail to make some friends through your wonderful website. before that i have to say i am very weak in english.. i even dont know how to write a simple latter… also don’t know how to speak with my teachers and some of my friends all over the world. somtimes i felt shy when some of my friends from our contry talks to me in english and also i use to simply ignor them… because i don’t even know what they are talking and what i have to say them.. this is the truth..

    I am from beautiful Maldives, maybe you might not know this place.. but really this is very very beautiful country.. I would like to you to come here…

    hey all friends my name is HAMDHOON.

    pls do contact me; I will be happy if you all contact me..

    thank you lucy for your hard work, also I am waiting for your mail.. bye for now

  26. Fred Says:

    T h a n k y o u v e r y m u c h

  27. emiliano Says:

    Pedro. Hamdhoon and Polo, so nice to see you here as it is always a pleasure to have more bloggers among us.
    If you may see how badly I wrote at first, even now I have to make a great efford to write a little better after two years of doing it.
    I know that wiriting is a very good way of improving my English and also, as much important, to have a very good time reading all the bloggs and what the friends have to say.
    I have been always very close to Mexico don’t ask me why, it is a feeling, may be I have seen all the movies of Cantinflas when I was a boy and all the mexicans I have met have been very nice people.
    Polo, you may see Lucy beside Jeff in a video that they made together nearly a year ago. She looks very very nice and gorgeous on it.
    Hamdhoon your country has to bee beautiful indeed, If I could I would like to go and see it. I have seen some video on the screen about Madives Islands and they were marvellous.
    Peter, where are you from? and Nina, Hamey and Polo same question….may be you told us before but please remind me, I have a very bad memory.
    I want to know every one.
    If I didn´t tell you I am from madrid, spain., but I think I did.
    Thank you to all of you.

  28. HAMEY Says:

    thanks emiliano…

    I love my country as much as jeff loves his great nation…

    but I love to have friends from all over the world… thats not only for improving my english standard, also to share their feelings, culture and many more.

    there is one thing I have to say emiliano and all other friends.. this is the first time I am writing, without knowing what I am writing… maybe still there are few mistakes in my writings… sorry for that…

    I have finished my cambridge “O”level.. and Edexcel “A”level…without any english pass.

    but for my degree enterence I must have atleast english pass.. now I am trying for that a lot.. this is a woderful website for students like me. hehe.

    bye for now…

  29. emiliano Says:

    Sorry Nina about some information I have given you, it is in the English Cafe number 134 where Jeff talks about Scott Fitzgerald and he was a cousin but from his father’s family not his mother as I have told you above.
    Some times my memory is very bad more even about relatives as I always misunderstand everything.
    If you can listen to that Cafe where Jeff talk about this great American Author borned same day and same place that him, it should be quite interesting.
    I have listened to the cafe again and now I wanted to read some of his books, particulary “This side of Paradise” or the “Great Gatsby” that Jeff recomend us on the cafe.
    Sorry Jeff and sorry Nina, I have too many things in my head.

  30. Nina Says:

    Oh, don’t care Emiliano. The most important was the answer of my question and now I will listen again the English Café 134. I like the lessons very much. Relationships, Health/Medicine and Daily life more than business or Travel. My favorites are the English Café’s and the videos with Jeff and a “little peace of Lucy”. I am german but I am living in France since a lot of years now. I like the sound of french,spanish and italian. My dream is to be able one day to speak fluently english. Since I am listening to ESL, I understand more and more but I have to work much more every day. I would like writing messages as you do. Your English is quite good.

  31. Nina Says:

    I doubt again about the birthday of Jeff. I was listening to the English café 134 and Jeff was serious when he talks about the date but surprise today in the last café he sad that he was in prison for five years and again his voice was very serious. I’m sure that he was kidding but definitely I will never know when he is telling the truth about him. Finally he is an actor. All I’m sure is that he is hairless, not completely because I saw that he shaved the few hair he has. Jeff is an astonishing man…