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I've come across a phrase in the context of How to Split a Restaurant Bill with Friends While You Are With a Skint, which was written on March 15th 2015 by Liz Smith for The Debrief:

On this note, you should also be wary of the man who asks for some seasonal greens and a chips for the table. ‘For the Table’ means ‘I’m craving chips but I’m taking everyone down with me’.

You need to have stated your intentions for the chips at the time of ordering. As in, loudly saying, ‘I’m OK for chips’ to verbally state that you will not be entering into the chip contract. Don’t feel pressured.


I never saw "I'm okay for chips" before. Do you say that when you don't feel like something?

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  • It's kind of stupid, the way it's stated. Easily misunderstood. Would be far better to say "I've got plenty of chips already," or some such. – Hot Licks Mar 9 '17 at 23:15
  • @HotLicks I think that's the first time i've seen an idiomatic usage condemned as stupid on ELU. It isn't a unique usage the author made up to confuse people, it's perfectly common informal usage. It is difficult to find examples online because it's a construction mostly used in the immediacy of verbal communication... this is tricky to explain... it's used in situations where consumables are being obtained. It's more common to find it in a question. e.g. you arrive at the pub, spot your mates at a table where they all have fairly full glasses. Before ... – Spagirl Mar 10 '17 at 0:15
  • @HotLicks ... you go to the bar you ask 'everyone okay for drinks?' Or you might say 'can i get anyone something?' and they reply 'no mate, we're okay for drinks'. 'Okay' might be substituted with 'fine', 'good', 'alright' etc. Just because it's unfamiliar doesn't mean it's stupid. – Spagirl Mar 10 '17 at 0:21
  • @Spagirl -The thing is, the article is purporting to tell someone who is not "up" on the terminology and idioms how to behave and make himself understood. With an idiom like "I'm OK for chips" there is a certain tone of voice and delivery that conveys part of the meaning. The neophyte (especially if not a native English speaker) could easily say things in a way that would be misunderstood. Plus, given that the person ordering the greens and chips might also be a non-native speaker, there is a double chance of misunderstanding. Far better for all involved to be just a little clearer. – Hot Licks Mar 10 '17 at 0:31
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    @HotLicks It's an opinion article written by a comedian taking a wry, tongue-in-cheek look at the perils of bill splitting. While it has a serious element, it isn't written as a serious aid for people unfamiliar with British culture or specially aimed at non-native speakers so much as it's aimed at broke brits with wealthier friends. The author is one of these women youtu.be/56Nw9bC3ms0 If it were intended to be a serious learning tool i'd agree with you. – Spagirl Mar 10 '17 at 1:24
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I disagree (with Yosef Baskin's answer). In this usage, I believe the person saying "I"m okay for chips." does NOT want chips. As in:

I'm okay for chips, but I'll go in on a cheese plate.

Similarly, when asking someone if they want refills, "I'm good" or "I'm okay" indicates that the would-be recipient does NOT desire any - she is already comfortable, and desires no more.

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    Wish i could vote this up more than once as you are correct, the speaker does not want to be bounced into paying for chips they didn't want. – Spagirl Mar 9 '17 at 21:41

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