Questions, Comments, and Concerns for Common Figures of Speech

Times have changed, and certain common sayings in the English language no longer have the same gusto as when they were created. These idioms and expressions have gone too long without proper analysis and constructive criticism. Here are my thoughts on why they’re just wrong.

Dog eat dog world

Sure, I know about dog fights. But dog cannibals? That’s a bit of a stretch for me. But you know what animals famously eat each other? Hamsters. So my edits for this “classic” saying is, let’s gain some accuracy and start saying we live in a “hamster eat hamster world.” It’s time to expose those bastards.

Play devil’s advocate

Today’s generation don’t seem to have the same fear or negative views of the devil as the people who created this saying. To keep this saying up to date, see whatever has the most current downvotes on reddit for the day and “play advocate” for that.

Costs and arm and a leg

I feel like inflation plays a part in this but I’m not sure the exchange rate of body parts. My gut says if we are offering up all limbs or at least three limbs (buyers choice), the dramatic price will be more properly displayed.

His life did a 180 turn

That’s just going back where he came from. My recommendation is that he considers a slight 45 degree turn. Sounds like his life needs some big readjustments but you would be surprised how much a little angling can affect your trajectory in the long run.

Put something on ice

Put it in the fridge. Ice melts, but your LG French Door refrigerator lasts forever (thanks to your lifetime warranty).

Ball’s in your court

This saying is generally used as an acknowledgement that “you” now have the decision making power. Now, I’m no sports guru, but if the ball’s in my court, are we in different courts? Am I playing alone?

There are other fish in the sea

Not very hopeful if you live in the Midwest. I think this is a good expression but I would recommend that our friends in the middle modify it to “there are other corn’s on the cobb.”

It is what it is

Ever heard of contractions. It’s what it’s, please.

You can’t have your cake and eat it too

This is meant to be used as a way to say you can’t have it all. However, we live in a very do it yourself generation. If you make your own cake you can eat it. It’s not that complicated. I recommend we qualify it by turning it into a business venture. Ex: you can’t sell your cake for profit and eat it too. You will get bad reviews on Yelp and your company will ultimately fail.

Curiosity killed the cat

Oh, I wasn’t aware my neighbor Linda who was supposed to feed my cat while I was gone in Cancun but forgot because she got “caught up” in some stuff going on in her “personal life,” was now going by the name “Curiosity.”

Well begun is half done

It sounds like the second half of this saying would be, “but your next challenge ahead could leave you dead!” A little too witchy for my taste. If That’s what you’re into, go ahead and fatten little children up on your own time, but don’t bring that stuff around me.

Jump on the band wagon

This was clearly made back when radio was the highest form of edgy entertainment. It’s supposed to mean that you are now doing something cool because everyone else is doing it. I assure you though, the kids of today are not jumping on their local marching bands homecoming float because it’s “cool.” How about we change it to “sign up for therapy.” Something that could be “cool” for all of us.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink

Not to split hairs, but with the proper amount of force you absolutely can make a horse drink. Since this proverb is used to say you can’t make people do things if they aren’t willing to learn, I suggest we change it to, you can lead a horse without a mouth to water but you can’t make him drink. That way it is REALLY clear that horse is going to have to figure things out for himself.