Mixed metaphors.Posted: July 1, 2014 Filed under: Word Up | Tags: language Leave a comment
I love mixed metaphors. They’re as much fun as shooting fish in a barrel of monkeys. But I’m no Monday morning shortstop. I’m not green behind the ears. This isn’t rocket surgery, after all; it’s as easy as falling off a piece of cake.
Lately I’ve been burning the midnight oil at both ends. I’m not the sharpest marble in the drawer. I’m one brick short of the whole nine yards. Sometimes I feel like I’m swimming uphill against the grain. But I can see the light at the end of the rainbow, and I came out of it smelling like a bandit. At least a broken squirrel finds a nut twice a day.
You can lead a gift horse to water, but you can’t look him in the mouth. Sometimes you have to bite the hand that you’re dealt. When life throws you curve balls, make lemonade. You can dish it out, but you can’t take it with you. If the shoe fits, walk a mile in it. You can take that to the bank and smoke it!
Can you read the handwriting in the wind? We’ve barely scratched the tip of the iceberg! No use beating it over the head with a dead horse. It’s time to grab the bull by the tail and look him in the eye. Get the show on the road while the deer is in the headlights. Cook up a storm on the back burner. Ninety-nine times out of ten, that’s what you’ll get.
We could stand here and talk until the cows turn blue. But we have to get all our ducks on the same page, or the fan is gonna hit the roof. There’s no use crying over fish in the sea. A glass half full is better than no loaf at all. All bark and no bite makes Jack a dull boy. Why pay the piper when you can have the milk for free?
So here’s the whole kettle of fish in a nutshell: Wake up and smell the music. Don’t cry over spilt water under the bridge. Put your best foot forward and put a sock on it. Take the road less paved with good intentions. Don’t count your chickens without breaking a few eggs. If they tell you to jump off a bridge, you say “how high?”
Have we beaten this with a dead stick? Well, don’t let the horse you rode in on hit you on the way out.
(I gleaned a great many of these from two awesome blogs: Jim Carlton and The Russler. My appreciation, gents.)
Kindly do the needful.Posted: May 8, 2013 Filed under: Word Up | Tags: coolness, language 1 Comment
I love Indian English. By which I mean English as spoken by people of India. It’s been referred to as “Hinglish” as it’s sort of a duke’s mixture of Hindu and Punjabi and the Queen’s English, spoken there by those Brits those many, many years. Some Indianisms I tumbled upon through a column by writer Donald DeMello, which has made the rounds of the Intertubes. They are so useful that they need to be part of every-day language in the rest of the world. Some of these are from DeMello’s column, some from other places.
This commercial is a great example of Hinglish, I think.
“Doing the needful”: This is considered archaic in many regions of India, but I think it deserves a resurgence. To do the needful means to just do it, do what is necessary, take care of bidness, get ‘er done.
“What is your good name?”: Apparently this is the greeting tourists will often receive in Indian business places. Like you also have a bad phony name, but they don’t want that one.
“Sleep is coming”: That just says it all. “Let’s take rest now, sleep is coming.”
“Updation”: Being updated, brought current, upgraded.
“Entry from backside only”: A traffic direction commonly found in urban areas, indicating the way to an access point. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
“Prepone”: To cancel something before it begins. If you can postpone something, why can’t you prepone it?
“Take tension”: To be stressed out.
“Do nuisance”: Take a leak, especially in public.
“Airdash”: Going somewhere in a hurry.
“Badmash”: Hooligan, wild-hair, bad mofo.
“Timepass”: Something to pass the time, like reading this blog for instance.
“Felicitate”: This is probably my favorite. It means to make very happy, to delight, to express joy or pleasure, and/or to congratulate someone. One source wrote that India is the only place the word is used like this.
Someone I know works with many people of Indian descent (in the IT field, not surprisingly). She has commented often about how her co-workers seem to love the word “damn.” They sprinkle it throughout their conversation, in places we would not usually expect it: “Pass the damn ketchup, please.” They think it’s the greatest English word of all.
My dad, therefore, would have been the king of India.