Tuesday Toss-Up

People Say the Weirdest Things

Did someone say "Pony up?"
Did someone say “Pony up?”

Have you ever stopped to really listen to some of the idioms we use all the time? Some are weird, some funny and some downright disgusting. All of them are likely to generate mental images that give you pause.

Here are a few that I’ve heard recently:

Pay through the nose.
Pay an arm and a leg.
Raining cats and dogs.
Kick the bucket.
Spitting image.
Pony up.
It’s not rocket science/brain surgery.
Lost your marbles.

And the biggest head-scratcher for me: “S–t eating grin.” While some of the others seem fairly reasonable for how they’re used and the origins are easy enough to uncover, I just can’t wrap my mind around anyone ever, ever, ever being thrilled to eat, um, turds.


Our family has an idiom or two of our own. Our favorite is “Normally, people order rice.” The saying originated after an embarrassing incident in a Thai restaurant when my husband (then fiancé) and I were trying to low-carb it before our wedding. Apparently, Atkins and Thai cuisine don’t really mix. *shrug* Anyway, the saying is now often used whenever someone around us is doing something weird or unusual. Which, in our family, is a lot.

Perhaps it’ll one day fall into common usage.

Probably not though. And that’s probably best.

Here are a few amusing/disturbing articles on the origins of common sayings:

What are your favorite/least-favorite sayings? Any sayings you’ve invented?

4 thoughts on “People Say the Weirdest Things

  1. I remember the saying “getting down to the brass tacks”. I found out that it was a way to measure. Math wasn’t a strong issue way back when either.

    Told a clerk at a fast restaurant I wanted 1/2 dozen of the chicken nuggets. She said they didn’t have them. I pointed to the sign.

    Enjoyed this.

    1. 😀 I forgot about the brass tacks one. That cracks me up. I didn’t know it was a way to measure. Interesting.

      LOL about the chicken nuggets. Next time ask for a baker’s dozen. Heh heh heh.

  2. I’ve always enjoyed looing into the origin of words and phrases. My family has a couple of phrases, my father says “Flying fornication of a perforated pastry” as a sub for cursing and I picked it up from him and have long used it since I don’t curse. It usually gets a chuckle. My husband and I say ‘refrigerator story’ for a story that someone is trying to pass off as true but is so obviously exaggerated or otherwise false no reasonable person would believe it (from someone trying to tell a story about a refrigerator being thrown at them). I like ‘normally, people order rice’. It would be a good one to add to the common lexicon. And really, Atkins at a Thai restaurant says everything you need to know to make sense of it.

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