In the episode 14 of Friends, Susan and Carol are having dinner in a restaurant. Susan's cell phone rings - it's a workmate who needs her presence there. Then, they talk to each other:

Carol: Oh no. I thought you said they could shoot the spot without you.

Susan: I thought they could.

Carol: But it is Valentine’s Day.

Susan: I know, but it is my job. Look, I’ll try to get back as soon as I can. I’m sorry.

I've been trying to understand the meaning of the bold expression above checking different meanings to to shoot and spot, but I couldn't. I guess Susan's job was not presented on the series (so far). To spot I found:

spot. A situation, especially a troublesome one.

I think it may be the right meaning in this case, if to shoot could be like to solve. However, I couldn't be sure of that. I'd appreciate any help. Thanks in advance!

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    shoot is to film or take a picture of something. the spot is some short such activity like a commercial or promo.
    – user3169
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 16:25
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    What @user3169 said. Personally, I'd be perfectly happy with slot instead of shot in this context - more explicitly alluding to the idea that the transmission (or recording) schedule is "tight" (potentially making it difficult for additional material to be "slotted in" to some small gap). Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 16:32
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    @J.R. I didn't because dictionary definitions applied to the context should have been enough to answer the question.
    – user3169
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 18:29
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    @user3169 - Have you looked up spot in the dictionary? I think sometimes we forget how hard it might be for a learner to sort through dozens of definitions and spot the correct one. Given that spot has about 20 definitions as a noun, and shoot has about 40 as a verb, that's about 800 possible potential meanings for shoot the spot.
    – J.R.
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 18:41
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    I think the OP needs to apply the context to those definitions. Then spot: "6. countable noun - A spot in a television or radio show is a part of it that is regularly reserved for a particular performer or type of entertainment. Unsuccessful at screen writing, he got a spot on a CNN film show."
    – user3169
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 23:29

1 Answer 1


As user3169 pointed, in this situation, the right meanings to shoot and spot are:

shoot. film or photograph (a scene, film, etc.).

spot. a brief announcement or advertisement broadcast between scheduled radio or television programs.

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