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#51
Old 10-28-2013, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Ethilrist View Post
"Still waters run deep." Actually, they don't run at all... they're still.
I thought that this is saying you're looking at a river and it looks like the water isn't moving, but that's simply because it's a deep river and the water is flowing more swiftly at the bottom.

Although...now that I think about it, does that actually happen in nature?

Maybe it's more like shallow creeks run swiftly and splashily, but the more stately rivers (rivers with gravitas, if you will) may not be as quick and showy but they make up for it by being deep.
#52
Old 10-28-2013, 01:55 PM
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Here's one I hate: "A penny saved is a penny earned."

Forget the relative worthlessness of a penny, that's not why this idiom bothers me. I just don't understand it. If someone gives me a penny, did I earn it? What if I stole it? What if I worked for it? Now say I came across a penny in each of the aforementioned ways. Does the very virtue of saving each penny make each penny earned? No!!

So what the heck does this idiom even mean? I've always taken it to mean "It's a good idea to save your pennies rather than spending them, because in the long run, saving even small amounts of money will add up over time." But, how does "A penny saved is a penny earned" mean that?
#53
Old 10-28-2013, 02:02 PM
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When I was little I didn't understand "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want."

That made no damn sense. Of course I *want* the Lord to be my shepherd, isn't that what Sunday School is trying to teach me? Then my mom explained that it means "...I shall not want...anything else."
#54
Old 10-28-2013, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Here's one I hate: "A penny saved is a penny earned."

Forget the relative worthlessness of a penny, that's not why this idiom bothers me. I just don't understand it. If someone gives me a penny, did I earn it? What if I stole it? What if I worked for it? Now say I came across a penny in each of the aforementioned ways. Does the very virtue of saving each penny make each penny earned? No!!

So what the heck does this idiom even mean? I've always taken it to mean "It's a good idea to save your pennies rather than spending them, because in the long run, saving even small amounts of money will add up over time." But, how does "A penny saved is a penny earned" mean that?
I believe the expression refers to the fact that it's easy to spend money, but takes some effort to put it away for later. Effort in the sense of planning and foresight and denial of immediate gratification. The effort will pay off in the long run, therefore you have earned that saved money, regardless of how you came by it. Perhaps when the expression was coined a penny was actually worth something, but I've always taken it as a euphemism for money in general.

Last edited by Arrendajo; 10-28-2013 at 02:56 PM.
#55
Old 10-28-2013, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Gatopescado View Post
Solved: Eat half the cake.
No, because once you cut the cake, you have ruined the beauty and elegance that you wished to preserve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Here's one I hate: "A penny saved is a penny earned."

...

So what the heck does this idiom even mean? I've always taken it to mean "It's a good idea to save your pennies rather than spending them, because in the long run, saving even small amounts of money will add up over time." But, how does "A penny saved is a penny earned" mean that?
"A penny thrown away recklessly is a penny you don't have around to spend later." From when pennies were worth something - halfpennies were worth something.

Last edited by Irishman; 10-28-2013 at 03:02 PM.
#56
Old 10-28-2013, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Yllaria View Post
If you don't get the straw packed into the mattress properly, it can poke you through the ticking.
I hate it when I get poked through the ticking! It's one of the worst places to get poked through.
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Originally Posted by Innards Snacker View Post
It's negation by association. The negatory aspect of not gets applied to the phrase as a whole. For one reason or another the not gets dropped but no one minds because everyone knows it still means that they don't care. We see the same thing happen with "I could/couldn't give a damn."
This reminds me of Clark Gable's immortalized line: "Frankly, my dear, I give a damn!" I just play it safe and say "I don't care" (especially if the person emphatically tells me that he didn't kill his wife). (sorry for the mix-and-match movie quotes... by which I mean "not sorry")
I find strange "How [do] you like them apples?" Why "them apples" instead of just "that".
#57
Old 10-28-2013, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Crawlspace View Post
I've recently learned that "Don't shit where you eat" means to not fuck someone you work with.

How or why this came about is beyond me.
In more general terms it means "Don't make a mess where your support comes from." Don't shit on your plate and then expect a pleasant meal. Don't create drama at work and expect a pleasant work environment.
#58
Old 10-28-2013, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by gallows fodder View Post
Maybe it's more like shallow creeks run swiftly and splashily, but the more stately rivers (rivers with gravitas, if you will) may not be as quick and showy but they make up for it by being deep.
The implication is that you have more to fear from the silent dude in the back of the room than the obnoxious moron getting in your face but I think the actual correlation to water is that a stream or creek that makes a lot of noise and looks fast is easy to get in and out of and doesn't really put you in danger. A larger river that looks like it's moving slowly isn't something you can wade through and the current, especially in the center may look slow but in reality can sweep you off your feet and half a mile down the river before anyone knows you're gone.
#59
Old 10-28-2013, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Here's one I hate: "A penny saved is a penny earned."

Forget the relative worthlessness of a penny, that's not why this idiom bothers me. I just don't understand it. If someone gives me a penny, did I earn it? What if I stole it? What if I worked for it? Now say I came across a penny in each of the aforementioned ways. Does the very virtue of saving each penny make each penny earned? No!!

So what the heck does this idiom even mean? I've always taken it to mean "It's a good idea to save your pennies rather than spending them, because in the long run, saving even small amounts of money will add up over time." But, how does "A penny saved is a penny earned" mean that?
I take this to mean that when it comes to money, you can either save it or earn it. Being smart with your money and not spending it foolishly is as good as going out and having to work for it.
#60
Old 10-28-2013, 04:18 PM
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"He's second to none!" or "He's second to no one!" - I always hear that as "How bad must a person be that, there's no one involved in the event, and he Still came in second?"
#61
Old 10-28-2013, 04:27 PM
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"A watched pot never boils."


Well if you apply enough heat to it, it will in fact boil. You watching it will not prevent this.
#62
Old 10-28-2013, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Here's one I hate: "A penny saved is a penny earned."

Forget the relative worthlessness of a penny, that's not why this idiom bothers me. I just don't understand it. If someone gives me a penny, did I earn it? What if I stole it? What if I worked for it? Now say I came across a penny in each of the aforementioned ways. Does the very virtue of saving each penny make each penny earned? No!!

So what the heck does this idiom even mean? I've always taken it to mean "It's a good idea to save your pennies rather than spending them, because in the long run, saving even small amounts of money will add up over time." But, how does "A penny saved is a penny earned" mean that?
Actually as Andrew Tobias in The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need points out, if you save a penny your wealth increases by one cent.

But, thanks to taxes, you have to earn more than a penny to increase your wealth by one cent.

So its often better to save (look for deals), then to try an earn more to build up your wealth.

So the saying means, saving a penny (getting a better deal) is just like earning a penny (and in fact, thanks to taxes.... its better).
#63
Old 10-28-2013, 04:52 PM
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Oh wow, thanks for trying to explain this idiom to me. So "a penny saved" in this context means that you paid a penny less for something than you otherwise would have, and NOT that you put a penny in the penny bank.

I think I get it now! A penny saved by getting a good deal is just as good as a penny you earned and added to your wealth. Phew. I'm happy again.
#64
Old 10-28-2013, 05:04 PM
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"Awesome"vs. wful". These expressions should mean the same thing, but are opposite. Why is this?
#65
Old 10-28-2013, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by vontsira View Post
Consensus of opinion reached, was that "could care less" is what students of language usage call a "sturdy indefensible": an expression which is at least to some degree wrong / nonsensical / inaccurate, but which many people persist in using, regardless.
You wasted perhaps the only opportunity you will ever get to say "irregardless" with impunity. Just sayin.
#66
Old 10-28-2013, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
That's another one that makes more sence turned around.
You want to eat your cake but still have it.
The solution is patently obvious, as Gatopescado notes: Eat half the cake. Then you do have your cake and you've eaten it, too.

I've always taken "I could care less" to have an unspoken addendum of "... but that would require me to muster up the energy to do so and, given the irrelevance/lack of interest this matter holds, I am unwilling to do so, as that would - ironically - require me to care about this matter enough to be bothered doing that."

Another I've heard that I wonder about: "A bird in he hand is worth two in the bush." I 'get' it means (effectively) "something is better than nothing", but I struggle to think of a plausible situation whereby having a bird in my hand would be an immensely advantageous or desireable situation - much less one where two birds would be an improvement.*

*I realise this probably dates from an era where having a bird in your hand meant you were actually going to have something to eat that night, but even so, it doesn't make a lot of sense nowadays.
#67
Old 10-28-2013, 08:00 PM
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It's funny because I was just explaining the idiom "bird in the hand" to my boyfriend not more than 2 days ago. I too struggled to come up with a good example, but just settled on saying something like, "It's better to appreciate what you've got in your possession right now than it is to possibly lose it for a chance to get even more of that good thing."

Still couldn't come up with a real world example of when I would say it though, that wasn't totally lame sounding.
#68
Old 10-28-2013, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Oh wow, thanks for trying to explain this idiom to me. So "a penny saved" in this context means that you paid a penny less for something than you otherwise would have, and NOT that you put a penny in the penny bank.

I think I get it now! A penny saved by getting a good deal is just as good as a penny you earned and added to your wealth. Phew. I'm happy again.
This is new to me. I have never seen this definition attached to the saying. Honestly, you're overthinking it a bit. A simple Google search reveals the meaning of the phrase, such as this one from wisegeek.org:


A penny saved typically refers to the full quote a penny saved is a penny earned. This old adage is a little challenging to understand, since people cant earn the same penny twice. It does relate to the idea of the difficulty in being thrifty and saving money. Spending a penny, or any other amount, means the person no longer has it in his possession, while saving it means he can still count it as something earned and something held.
Another way of interpreting this maxim is to say that saving is work too. Saving is another form of earning, because it may take effort not spend the penny. In a sense, the person who saves does work twice for the penny, once to initially earn it, and then again to keep from spending it. Alternately, a penny in a savings account may earn money, granted at a very slow rate. This meaning may not have been intended with initial use of the phrase.
#69
Old 10-28-2013, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post

Another I've heard that I wonder about: "A bird in he hand is worth two in the bush." I 'get' it means (effectively) "something is better than nothing", but I struggle to think of a plausible situation whereby having a bird in my hand would be an immensely advantageous or desireable situation - much less one where two birds would be an improvement.*
When I talk to new sales people I like to use this idiom -

the sale you've made, is worth a whole hell of a lot more than the one you haven't -

Or to put it another way - take the money that's on offer first, make it safe and secure and THEN work on the "two in the bush" - if you give up the bird in the hand, to chase the two in bush, you may well end up shit outta luck.
#70
Old 10-28-2013, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
It's funny because I was just explaining the idiom "bird in the hand" to my boyfriend not more than 2 days ago. I too struggled to come up with a good example, but just settled on saying something like, "It's better to appreciate what you've got in your possession right now than it is to possibly lose it for a chance to get even more of that good thing."

Still couldn't come up with a real world example of when I would say it though, that wasn't totally lame sounding.
Think of it in terms of a sale -

let's say you've been looking for a new laptop - then you see one on sale for 40% discount.

Do you buy it, or wait for another sale that is 60% discount?

Well - a bird in the hand (40% discount) is worth two in the bush (the 60% discount that might never eventuate)
#71
Old 10-28-2013, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by shijinn View Post
that's taken out of context - earthworms are nocturnal so they're actually being out late, having partied through the night.
Ahhh...so my grandfather was actually slut shaming the earthworm for partying too much?
#72
Old 10-28-2013, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by gallows fodder View Post
I thought that this is saying you're looking at a river and it looks like the water isn't moving, but that's simply because it's a deep river and the water is flowing more swiftly at the bottom.

Although...now that I think about it, does that actually happen in nature?
Yes, it does, both in rivers and seas. The top layer may look sluggish, but the undercurrents are fast and drag you down.
#73
Old 10-28-2013, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Soylent Juicy View Post
When I was little I didn't understand "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want."

That made no damn sense. Of course I *want* the Lord to be my shepherd, isn't that what Sunday School is trying to teach me? Then my mom explained that it means "...I shall not want...anything else."
Huh, interesting... the Spanish translations specify the "for nothing". El Seor es mi pastor, nada me puede faltar - the Lord is my shepherd, I can lack for nothing.
#74
Old 10-28-2013, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
It's funny because I was just explaining the idiom "bird in the hand" to my boyfriend not more than 2 days ago. I too struggled to come up with a good example, but just settled on saying something like, "It's better to appreciate what you've got in your possession right now than it is to possibly lose it for a chance to get even more of that good thing."

Still couldn't come up with a real world example of when I would say it though, that wasn't totally lame sounding.
when you're in a happy relationship you do not risk it for a night with the hot twins in the bush, for you might just end up being eaten by a bird.

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Originally Posted by bengangmo View Post
Ahhh...so my grandfather was actually slut shaming the earthworm for partying too much?
#75
Old 10-28-2013, 11:01 PM
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Upthread Superhal took issue with "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" on the basis that life had better give you sugar as well otherwise it's going to taste like shit.

Good point, but I have another issue with the saying, namely that it prevaricates on the nature of lemons. The implication is that if life gives you something sour (ie bad, useless), you should be enterprising and make something better from what you are given. But the saying only works because lemons are not something bad or useless: they may be sour, but they are a valuable, nutritious and tasty fruit. That's why you can make lemonade out of them.

To make the saying more realistic, it would have to be either:

When life gives you something valuable like lemons, you'll be able to make even more money by turning it into lemonade. Isn't it great to be born into wealth?"

..or alternatively, to be brutally honest, the saying could be:

"When life gives you something useless and valueless, you won't actually be able to make much out of it, sorry. Sucks to be you, I guess."

I suspect that neither, more realistic, version of the saying would suit the rhetorical purposes of the sort of smug wanker who tends to use the original version.

Last edited by Princhester; 10-28-2013 at 11:02 PM.
#76
Old 10-28-2013, 11:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Corner Case View Post
"He's second to none!" or "He's second to no one!" - I always hear that as "How bad must a person be that, there's no one involved in the event, and he Still came in second?"
The one that always got me is "I've forgotten more than you'll ever know about this."

First time I heard one guy say that to another, I thought "So, what, he's sixty percent knowledgeable, and well on his way to seventy -- and you used to be a hundred percent, but have dropped down to twenty? Or he's topped out at ninety-five percent, while you've gone from ninety-nine to zero? Exactly how stupid are you these days, compared to how brainy you used to be?"
#77
Old 10-28-2013, 11:33 PM
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"When life gives you AIDS, make lemon-AIDS!"

- Sarah Silverman
#78
Old 10-28-2013, 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Gatopescado View Post
Solved: Eat half the cake.
So you can halve your cake and eat it too.
#79
Old 10-29-2013, 01:11 AM
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"A stitch in time saves nine." No idea. My guess would be something to do with Borg dressmaking. "Stitch 7 of 9 completed. Other stitches need not be assimilated."
#80
Old 10-29-2013, 01:55 AM
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Originally Posted by gallows fodder View Post
I thought that this is saying you're looking at a river and it looks like the water isn't moving, but that's simply because it's a deep river and the water is flowing more swiftly at the bottom.

Although...now that I think about it, does that actually happen in nature?

Maybe it's more like shallow creeks run swiftly and splashily, but the more stately rivers (rivers with gravitas, if you will) may not be as quick and showy but they make up for it by being deep.
Well, yes, but: The cross-sectional area of a deep reach is larger than the cross-sectional area of a shallow reach. So the same volume of water is running faster through the shallow spots, and slower through the deeper spots. If it doesn't run faster it will bank up until there is a slope, then run faster down the slope. If it doesn't run slower, the slope/fall will flatten out until there is no no slope.

So water runs slower and flatter through the deep spots, and faster and steaper through the shallow spots. You can see this at the top and bottom of any still reach: there will be a fast slope running into the pond, and a fast slope running out of it.

It's like you do 100mph in a single lane, then everybody crowds up to do 30mph for some inane reason, then you all speed up again to 100mph. Only the reason you all slow down is because you can, not because you have to. And the reason you can all slow down is because the road has widened out, so the car behind you can go beside you instead of behind you, and you aren't trapped in tranch of cars all going 100mph and afraid to slow down. Then the road narrows again and you speed up to the speed of traffic to get into the single lane, with the other cars cutting in front of you and behind you at full speed.

Anyway, it means that the slow flat reaches of a river are deep, and are not a good place to cross. If you want a good place to cross, go to a ford, where you see the water speeding accross the shallow river bottom.
#81
Old 10-29-2013, 01:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Superhal View Post
"A stitch in time saves nine." No idea. My guess would be something to do with Borg dressmaking. "Stitch 7 of 9 completed. Other stitches need not be assimilated."
My daughter loves this one...

It reads much easier if you think of it as

One stitch now will arrest stop this garment from tearing and needing to be repaired with nine stitches later on.

OR

Deal with problems when they're small, and they easy - leave them to get bigger and you'll have far more effort.
#82
Old 10-29-2013, 02:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
"All that glitters is not gold" makes no sense. "Not all that glitters is gold" is the correct translation of the Latin original.
"All that is gold does not glitter" according to JRRT. Always made the most sense to me.
#83
Old 10-29-2013, 02:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Sorgine View Post
Huh, interesting... the Spanish translations specify the "for nothing". El Seor es mi pastor, nada me puede faltar - the Lord is my shepherd, I can lack for nothing.
And there are many English translations that achieve the same - it's the one well-known metrical version usually sung to the tune "Crimond" where the confusion arises. Another metrical version runs "The King of love my shepherd is, whose goodness faileth never; I nothing lack while I am his and he is mine forever". No problem there.
#84
Old 10-29-2013, 03:57 AM
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"Need X like a hole in the head"= see how long you can survive if we cover all the holes in your head.

"Making a mountain out of a molehill": breaks the law of the conservation of matter, but would be a marvel of engineering nonetheless.

"He'll hath no fury like a woman scorned.": also one who is cold, jealous, hungry, having a bad day, irritable, etc.
#85
Old 10-29-2013, 03:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
"All that glitters is not gold" makes no sense. "Not all that glitters is gold" is the correct translation of the Latin original.
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Originally Posted by vontsira View Post
As for the "All that glitters..." quote in particular: if I have things rightly, Shakespeare is -- as often --the original culprit. It's the first line of a verse in one of his plays (IIRC, Shakespeare's actual word here is "glisters", not "glitters"). He needed to shape the line the way he did, to make it scan verse-wise.
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Originally Posted by furryman View Post
"All that is gold does not glitter" according to JRRT. Always made the most sense to me.
If memory serves me right: the Tolkien quote is, in the book, a line of a verse created by Bilbo. Personally, I'll back Shakespeare any day, against some damned halfling who wasn't even invented till some 350 years later...
#86
Old 10-29-2013, 04:17 AM
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Originally Posted by vontsira View Post
Consensus of opinion reached, was that "could care less" is what students of language usage call a "sturdy indefensible": an expression which is at least to some degree wrong / nonsensical / inaccurate, but which many people persist in using, regardless.
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Originally Posted by The Great Sun Jester View Post
You wasted perhaps the only opportunity you will ever get to say "irregardless" with impunity. Just sayin.
Indeed, I could have done that -- drat it !

I'm rather addicted to the alternative-history, etc., novels of Harry Turtledove, and seem to refer to them a good deal on this board. There comes to mind, a thing from his "North America in the 19th / 20th centuries" alternative-history cycle; at one stage of which, an unpleasant totalitarian state comes to be, in part of what we know as the USA. The makers and rulers of said state are, mostly, "rough diamonds" with limited education. There's a passage where two of these high-ups are discussing a project -- for something nasty, no doubt. One of the guys finishes a sentence with a long and quite marvellous word which he has supposedly coined: the sense is akin to "all the same" or "anyhow", and it's a combination of "irregardless" and another "non-dictionary" polysyllable.

I forget precisely what the word is; and maddeningly, I just can't seem able to find the relevant passage in the book -- but it was a wondrous bit of butchery of the English language.
#87
Old 10-29-2013, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Superhal View Post
""He'll hath no fury like a woman scorned.": also one who is cold, jealous, hungry, having a bad day, irritable, etc.
The correct quote, in context, is "Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned," and comes from the play "The Mourning Bride" by William Congreve.

This play is also the origin of "Music has charms to soothe a savage breast," usually misquoted as "... savage beast"
#88
Old 10-29-2013, 09:42 AM
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When somebody believes something is beyond the need for discussion they say it "is a moot point",
yet the definition of "moot" is just the opposite... "subject to debate, dispute, or uncertainty, and typically not admitting of a final decision".
#89
Old 10-29-2013, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by ruh-roh View Post
When somebody believes something is beyond the need for discussion they say it "is a moot point",
yet the definition of "moot" is just the opposite... "subject to debate, dispute, or uncertainty, and typically not admitting of a final decision".
My understanding of the term is a bit different.

A moot point is one that is technically correct, but of no force, and derives from the "Moot Courts" used in debate of various historical points.

You can resolve that Lord Cardigan should have gotten clarification of obviously illogical orders before taking action, but that does not change that the Light Brigade charged an active artillery position, instead of the retreating artillery on the flank they were supposed to capture.
#90
Old 10-29-2013, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by ruh-roh View Post
When somebody believes something is beyond the need for discussion they say it "is a moot point",
yet the definition of "moot" is just the opposite... "subject to debate, dispute, or uncertainty, and typically not admitting of a final decision".
Usually I've heard " moot point" to mean not that a subject is beyond the need for discussion because it has been decided, but that the subject doesn't need to be discussed because there is no practical value to discussing it. Like a "moot court" - there's plenty of argument but the end result has no practical significance.
#91
Old 10-29-2013, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by tiescore View Post
"A watched pot never boils."


Well if you apply enough heat to it, it will in fact boil. You watching it will not prevent this.
True, but your perception while sitting and watching is that it is taking forever.

If you go away and do something else, the water seems to boil much sooner; usually when you are balancing your contact lens on your finger, ready to put it in.

Just like it did this morning as I was making my tea.
#92
Old 10-29-2013, 11:39 AM
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Denton, TX, USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
The solution is patently obvious, as Gatopescado notes: Eat half the cake. Then you do have your cake and you've eaten it, too.
No, you have half your cake.

Quote:
*I realise this probably dates from an era where having a bird in your hand meant you were actually going to have something to eat that night, but even so, it doesn't make a lot of sense nowadays.
A sandwich in the hand is worth two you have to get out and drive to the store to pick up. Don't put down the sandwich in your hand to go get dinner.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deadtwo99 View Post
Still couldn't come up with a real world example of when I would say it though, that wasn't totally lame sounding.
It's like in a movie, where the intrepid hero is being chased by some big monster, only to have some bigger monster jump out and bite the trailing monster. Then it throws that creature out of its mouth so it can start chasing the hero. That's right, it's got something to eat in its mouth and it spits it out to go get something else to eat.

Monsters must be bitter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melbourne View Post
It's like you do 100mph in a single lane, then everybody crowds up to do 30mph for some inane reason, then you all speed up again to 100mph. Only the reason you all slow down is because you can, not because you have to. And the reason you can all slow down is because the road has widened out, so the car behind you can go beside you instead of behind you, and you aren't trapped in tranch of cars all going 100mph and afraid to slow down. Then the road narrows again and you speed up to the speed of traffic to get into the single lane, with the other cars cutting in front of you and behind you at full speed.
Where the hell do you drive? When people slow down to 30mph, it's not "for no reason", it's typically because there's been an accident or some other obstruction like merging traffic, so they have to slow down. And you've never been on an interstate trapped between two people driving side by side and both maintaining a leisurely pace while you wish to hurry along?

Roads aren't necessarily like fluid flow. They don't obey Bernoulli.
#93
Old 10-29-2013, 02:25 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: North Peach State
Posts: 175
It's a common thing in these parts to hear the phrase "they need to pick themselves up by their bootstraps," referring to a poor person or family. Recently I realized that the phrase is absurd; you physically can't pick yourself up by your bootstraps. Turns out that was the intent when the phrase was coined--to indicate just that, an impossibility.

Ironic that a lot of people around here are poor and ignorant, and don't have the tools required to "pull themselves up," and the judgers are actually using the correct phrase incorrectly to condemn them.
#94
Old 10-29-2013, 03:20 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Cold Lake, Alberta
Posts: 3,943
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
So you can halve your cake and eat it too.
What you need to get around this whole cake thing is obvious....

Schrodinger's nearly as famous cake experiment.
You and a cake are put in a box where you are being restrained by a cord that may or may not be cut if a specific radioactive atom decaying occurs at any given moment.....
mmm, quantum cake! You have your cake and get to eat it too!
#95
Old 10-29-2013, 03:36 PM
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Location: Seattle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Cad View Post
Along the same lines, someone who takes a tumble is tits over ass. If it's a bad enough fall wouldn't you be ass over tits?
Ass over teacup is better. It gives a visual...
#96
Old 10-29-2013, 06:46 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Stockton
Posts: 10,241
Quote:
Originally Posted by Superhal View Post
. . ."Having a chip on your shoulder" = tell Chip to get off.
According to Bugs Bunny cartoons, daring someone to knock a chip of wood off of your shoulder used to be a method of trying to start a fist fight. Random googling seems to support the idea, but that could just be because no one is willing to challenge the rabbit's authority.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flywheel View Post
To which I'll add one point I've never seen in other discussions of this idiom: sound trumps sense. It's hard to say "I couldn't care less" without sounding earnest! and sincere! (Like a society matron in a Three Stooges film saying "Why, I've NEVER been so INSULTED in my LIFE!".) IOW, exactly the wrong tone for conveying blase nonchalance.
There's also a rhythm to English language put-downs that the n't interferes with. "I could CARE less!"

Quote:
Originally Posted by vontsira View Post
. . . The saying as stands, would seem to suggest that it's a kind of honour and compliment to the offender, to hang him with a new rope. It turns out, though, that in the business of hangmanship -- being hanged with a new rope is more painful for the victim, than being hanged with a well-worn, more comfortable older rope.
Previous thread on the topic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
. . . Yeah, why give in to that extortionist? Taking my friggin' apples every day, he should get a real job.
If you eat an apple a day, you'll stay healthy and not have to go to a doctor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatopescado View Post
Solved: Eat half the cake.
And the next day, eat half of that. And so on, and so on. According to Zeno's Paradox, you will then always have cake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by control-z View Post
In more general terms it means "Don't make a mess where your support comes from." Don't shit on your plate and then expect a pleasant meal. Don't create drama at work and expect a pleasant work environment.
My dad always said "don't shit in your mess kit."

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
The one that always got me is "I've forgotten more than you'll ever know about this."
The implication is "I've forgotten maybe 2% of what there is to know on this subject and you're only impressed with the 1% that you know because you know so damn little about it."

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacLir View Post
The correct quote, in context, is "Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned," and comes from the play "The Mourning Bride" by William Congreve. . .
Oh, cool! It's fury as in harpy, not fury as in anger. Much more mythological.
#97
Old 10-29-2013, 06:58 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: rhode island
Posts: 38,855
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yllaria View Post
According to Bugs Bunny cartoons, daring someone to knock a chip of wood off of your shoulder used to be a method of trying to start a fist fight. Random googling seems to support the idea, but that could just be because no one is willing to challenge the rabbit's authority.
I think this was done on an episode of Andy Griffith where Opie challenged a bully. But since you brought it up I thought I'd look, and found this wiki article. Seems to be a lot of history behind this the whole chip-on-the-shoulder thing, leading up to using it as a challenge to fight.
#98
Old 10-29-2013, 07:12 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
The solution is patently obvious, as Gatopescado notes: Eat half the cake. Then you do have your cake and you've eaten it, too.
Does Zeno's paradox work with baked goods? As long as I only eat half the remaining cake each time, I will have infinite cake?

Last edited by wolfman; 10-29-2013 at 07:12 PM.
#99
Old 10-29-2013, 07:24 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 10,505
It occurs to me that seems stupid the way I wrote it. Meant to say if Zeno applies to baked goods, then as long as it's possible for me to always eat half of the cake, then it doesn't matter how I eat the cake, I can never eat it all anyway.
#100
Old 10-29-2013, 10:16 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 264
"Seeing is believing." because the truth is "Believing is seeing." Aloha
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